Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Today involved:

Tying our tree to the wall.
the end..

Lol it actually wasn't that bad, it did fall down some ornaments did break.  The hubs and I took everything off the tree and redecorated with some Christmas music.  If it was too bad I would have broken out some nog and it would have looked alot worse, lol!


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Just another Sat Night


So the hubs and I were sitting around yesterday when we hear a CRASH from the next room; as you probably guessed, it was our Christmas tree.  My heart sunk because we have so many ornaments on there that mean so much to us.  I have ornaments from so many of my trips and important places to us; Ireland, Paris, Switzerland, Germany, our honeymoon, where we got engaged, etc.  We raced in and there was broken glass all over but only 4 ornaments really broke and out of those 4 only 1 was an important one so it was way better than it could have been.  The important one that broke was a blown egg ornament that I purchased for the hubs in Germany but I did buy two different ones so it wasn't even that bad.  I do want to try to make a replacement for it at some point though because it was really pretty.  I'm still breathing a sigh of relief that it wasn't that bad.  
Huh speaking of our trip to Germany I just found out (watching the food channel) that the choir master at the Cologne Cathedral was the person who invented Candy Canes.  Hey, we were there!

Anyway I'm wrapping up our Christmas presents now and getting ready for the big day.  We made peanut butter cups last night.  I'm making mints, caramel-chocolate covered pretzel sticks, muddy buddys, and of course cookies this week.  I have about thirty thousand more things to crochet and knit but I still feel pretty good about having everything done on time.  

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas time is here

So the house is decorated, presents are ready for wrapping, all sorts of sweet treats are getting ready to be made. Christmas is upon us. I had a few good friends over last night for our homemade Christmas party. We started last year with two rules; whatever we gave each other had to be either handmade or secondhand and it had to be $5 or less. Sometimes this gets a bit tricky when you try to figure out what to get for people but we always have a good time with it. I got an amazing set of fingerless gloves, a jar mix for Chocolate Chip Bars, an ornament and also will be receiving a crocheted Christmas ornament this week. I love knowing the thought and effort that went into making the gifts, it really makes me feel special and treasured. This year I made some cold processed soap to give away and wrapped it with a crocheted washcloth that I made and tied it with a bow. I'll blog about the soap making later this week. I made most of my gifts for everyone else as well (except the kids, I got their stuff from Non Toxic Tots).  

Today we're going to be doing some Christmas chocolates, watching some Christmas movies then going to a good friends house for some caroling.  I'm excited to get into the swing of the holidays now. :)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Twin Update

The twins are back in the care of the mama.
It was odd waking up and not getting to see their gorgeous little faces and hear one year old laughs but the experience did give us a small glimpse into what it will be as a parent and I want that. I'm going to be taking it slow at home just focusing on making Christmas gifts for now then after the holidays I'll be doing things around the house that we just haven't gotten around to (painting, grouting, putting in a new sink, etc.). When all of that is done I'll be figuring out ways to make an income. I have a few ideas floating around in my brain.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Join the club

So being the frugal, green maven that I am of course I decided that we should use cloth diapers on the twins while they are with us. Yes, you read that right cloth diapers on twins. I never said I was entirely sane. Well this was all going along swimmingly I usually change about 4x a day in cloth then overnight use the disposables. I even told my sister in law today how amazing it was going and how much money we were saving. I should have known. Today after nap Willow woke up with the most monster poo that had me doing the dreaded toilet swish. While doing this horrible little dance things got a bit messy. Needless to say the soap we got from Hershey thats brown and scented like chocolate didn't amuse me as much as it normally does.

Yes its still way cheaper and we will continue but I'm not opening my trap on how easy it is anymore!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Sunday, December 07, 2008

TWINS

So yes, we have the twins. We got them last Sunday so its been just over a week now. The first few days were hard as they were getting to know us and we were getting to know them. They are completely adorable and it is a joy to have them around. Its so different though so we are still getting used to it. I am starting to get used to this whole deal of having two extra squirmy appendages with me all the time. The hubs had to learn how to change diapers on a one year old, I know poor guy they are the worst squirmers!! He is doing great and is a wonderful help to me! He even took care of the two of their morning routines today so I could make my nephews pirate birthday cake, which turned out AMAZING! We're taking things as slow as we can and staying around the house as much as we can. Today we went down the shore to my nephews bowling party then to his family party afterwards, which was a LONG day for two little one year olds!! They are both snoozing now and me thinks that they will be sleeping a little later tomorrow (crossing fingers!). They play the most amazing game where I sit on the floor and they walk to the farthest edge of the room that we are in, turn around, and "run" as fast as they can back to me laughing and giggling the whole way, when they get back to me I lift them up and cover them with kisses then the game starts again.
We are extremely blessed to have the support system that we have in friends and family. I don't know how people get by without some amazing people to stand behind them. My parents came over to babysit last night so we could celebrate our first date/engagment anniversary at Hershey Park. We got halfway out and the roads got so bad we decided to eat dinner (Shady Maple YUM!! I love me some Amish food!) and headed back.
Anyway I'm tired but felt bad for not sharing whats up!! I will post pics tomorrow of twins and also cake :)

Friday, December 05, 2008

Busy Busy

Things have been hopping around here but I just wanted to share


Friday, November 28, 2008

Christmas Time

I have been slowly moving away from the whole buy buy buy of Christmas these past couple of years. My friends and I have a gift exchange in which we have to give something that was either made or re-used that you got for $5 or less. How many "things" can one person have. The hubs and I are incredibly blessed and have more than we need, and its true we don't need anymore. We're branching out and I'm going to be making even more gifts this year for family and friends. I've been practicing with my sewing machine and have been getting decent with it. I love this idea of not trying to show your love by buying things but doing it by actually giving your time to show it, then giving your money to the people who really need it. Hmm a Wii or a new well for a village, its not a hard choice.


Thursday, November 27, 2008

So Thankful


just one side of our family for my cousin Mo's wedding in August

Reflecting today on the things that God has given me. Our little family is a very blessed one. We are blessed to have a huge loving extended family as well. I'm so thankful for the things that we have a loving marriage, a home to call our own, a crazy little kitten cat. Most importantly I have faith and hope in Jesus, as well as the knowledge that I have a God who loves me as His child. Looking at the sales ads for Black Friday the hubs and I both decided that we don't need anything and that is an amazing place to be. We know that all of our needs have been met and we pray that God would continue to show us how to bless others with the bounty He has given.

Wishing all of you the most wonderful Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Just popping in to say Hi

So hi!
I'm done with the office as of Friday, been working on getting my house together. It looks great right now. I've been a cleaning fiend the past few days; laundry is completely done, I organized our toys, cds, cleaned the kitchen, vacuumed, scrubbed. I'm currently in the middle of the craziness that is my laundry room. I would post a before picture but to be honest its that bad. I have soooo much stuff in there that I'm finding places for and organizing. I spent a good part of the afternoon organizing my fabric stash and going through craft supplies. I also made 9lbs of sweet potato fries today, yeah, overkill much?!?! Lol, good thing they freeze!!

We also got our Flip Video back in the mail. They ended up sending us a brand new Flip Video, Underwater Case and also another accessory as an "I'm sorry". All in all I'm pretty happy with their customer service and I'm in LOVE with the camera (not so much the UW case). I will be using it a ton with the twinkies. The plan is for them to arrive tomorrow at La Casa de Dirkey. I'm hoping to have the rest of the house in order by the time they get here then I can just focus on getting to know them more (they really have only met me 3 times).

Don't know how much I'll be around in the coming days but if I don't get on I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving and make sure to enjoy your families. The hubs and I are planning a very very quiet Thanksgiving, we will probably visit with his family then spend some quiet time with friends later on. My family is all coming over for the twinkies 1st birthday party this Saturday all except My Gracie and My Meggie as they will be in DISNEY WORLD!! Which even I agree is better than Aunt Kristi's house.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Making A Mei Tai



So when we found out we were getting the twins I started wondering how you do certain things.  I couldn't for the life of me figure out grocery shopping.  If you put both of them in the cart where do you put groceries?  I figured that making a baby carrier would be a necessary thing and found a Neat Website that gave general directions on how to make one.  The carrier is made from super soft corduroy, I added an extra pocket in a contrasting fabric/color.  I really like the way it turned out, it was probably the first real quality thing that I've made on my sewing machine.  I'll take a pic with me wearing it next week and once I make sure that it works well and that I like it I am going to make another one using some yummie brown corduroy and a funky contrasting fabric for the days I'm wearing earth tones. :)
As far as costs go, the cord cost about $8 and the contrasting fabric $1.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Holy Moly

I just played on my sewing machine for a few hours and I'm pretty proud and impressed with what came out of it.  The hubs was watching the flyers game so I figured I should tackle one of the crafts that I wanted to get done.  There are about 1,000 more that need to be worked on but hey 1 down 999 to go, right?
I'll update tomorrow with some pictures but be prepared to be wowed with my seamstressocity.  I'm not good with patterns so I loosely based it off of something that I found on the internet.  Let me just say that one of the twins is going to be carried in style. 
Have a wonderful night!
Dirkey

Big Day


Sunset from the other day
Sorry that I've been quiet around the bloggy world this week. There is just so much going on. I'm trying to tie up any loose strings at work and get some projects done around the house. My last day at the office is today, AHHHH! I am looking forward to being home and to having the twins when they come (Wednesday!), its just such a strange thing to think that tomorrow I won't have a leave the house type of job. Although I would have loved to not leave the house this morning when I was cleaning SNOW off of my car and driving to work. The hubs and I have been cleaning (actually mostly laundry), winterizing the house and reorganizing to make room for the two little ones.
As far as the twins go, things are moving along. My poor niece has been running around getting everything in order (power of attorney, medical power of attorney, military id cards for them, doctors, toddler car seats). There is just so much to do with the twins moving up here and her moving down to Southern VA. Please say some prayers for her as this is a really difficult time, I just can't even imagine what she's going through.
As far as our house goes we just put the shrink wrap plastic stuff over our windows and I think I already notice a difference. Yes, we're due for some new windows sometime soon. I'm going to be paying attention to our electric bill and comparing to last year to see if there is a difference in our usage. I also want to insulate our laundry room door (to the outside) more too as its always so drafty in there. We have the twin's room all set to move in the cribs, with a bed in there for my niece for when she's up visiting. There is still a huge to do list but I think I'll be able to get the house in order by the time the twins come.

Our first snow of the year from this morning!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Weekend Goodness

We went over my brothers house to babysit my adorable nieces this weekend. It had been awhile since we'd seen them so we were soo happy to do it! They are both ridiculously funny. At one point we asked my niece Gracie (5 yrs old) who her favorite uncle was, of course she said Uncle J. So being the loving sister I am I called my brother and put him on speaker and asked her. She pointed at Uncle J but said Uncle Wil, the little stinker :) We read them books, ran around the house, went on a treasure hunt, played eye spy, played red light/green light, played dress up and generally had a very busy weekend, lol.
Meggie wearing the tutu I made her
My pretty princess
She asked Uncle J to read her a book
but didn't like the view sitting next to him
Me and my Gracie, I look surprised here about something!
Meggie cheasin it up for the camera, love the pig tails!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Why its good to have family

So this week we found out that were probably going to get the twins early. In this I realized that I have a good support system around me in my friends and family. My friends are all willing and volunteering to help the hubs and I transition from just us to a family of four (if only for a few months). It makes me really thankful to have them around me, I just feel incredibly loved which is an amazing place to be. I've been researching some groups and I will be joining my local MOP's Group and also The Holistic Mom's Network so that both the kids and I get out and meet some new people!

I'm excited to begin this journey and I'm sure I'll be updating more about this as it comes. Right now my last day of work is November 26th then I will be for the first time in my adult life, without an employer. Such a weird transition :)

Monday, November 10, 2008

I wish I thought of this!


Trust me watching it through is worth it!

A Beautiful Link

Biblical Womanhood gives a nice mini lesson on comparing ourselves to others. How quickly this can move from admiration to resentment, I don't know about you but I don't want to find a place for resentment to live in my life. If there is any I pray that God would completely wipe it out.

Update-Projector Pictures

Looking at the back of our family room behind the couch is our toy center which is why this is Hannah's favorite room. She was very upset that the toys were all covered up during the movie.

This is the projected image, the hubs of course chose Star Wars as his tester movie, lol. After this he moved it back so the screen was about 9 feet wide and 4.5 to 5 feet high. He also hooked it up to our sterio so the sound was pretty good too :)

We watched a movie Sat night then again on Sunday night. Its such a good rainy day thing to do, I definitely want to make it a special treat for us to break it out so it doesn't get old. :)

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Fun Freebie

So the hubs is one of those smart people and because of this works in a smart people field. Well his company just switched offices and was getting rid of a TON of things. He brought home a bunch of computer equipment and while explaining their very specific uses my brain exploded due to non-understandiness. One thing that he brought home though I am interested in, it's a VERY nice projector, one that basically turns my family room into a movie theatre. He's working on setting it up for a nice rainy day movie for after we are done our chores. The cat is in heaven because right now it is projecting his computer screen on the wall and let me just say that pointer that was moving across the wall is VERY tempting to my little kitten cat. He just jumped 3 feet up in the air to attack it and slid down the wall. Seriously I'm in tears its cracking me up.

We were out and about all day, had to get brakes for the hubs car, pick up his front forks for his motorcycle, check out wood flooring for our house, stop at Lowes to get stuff for Christmas and a pedestal sink for the downstairs bathroom. We found Teak flooring that we're going to put in the Kitchen, Hallway, Living room and Dining Room. We have to wait till January for it to come in though. Thankfully my family is going to help with installation so the price won't be too bad.

My Christmas adventure this year is going to be soap making. I was having a hard time finding Lye anywhere but after some searching online I realized that Lowes sells it as drain cleaner. The hubs doesn't understand how drain cleaner will make soap I told him its like a chemical peel but cheaper, LOL I'm horrible I know.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Some Good Dinner


Last night I was soo close to ordering out, I was just tired when I got home and didn't feel like cooking. I stopped at my sister in laws house and took in some of the cuteness that is my niece. The pit stop fueled me on and gave me the boost I needed to make some dinner. So I made some roasted potatoes, chicken and asparagus.

We had a lovely dinner with a stimulating dinner guest, Kitten Cat Snuggle Fluffy Pants III (we're trying to rename him because his name now isn't safe to say in front of children, he got the name from his love of jumping on the dining room table).

The hubs was REALLY happy I made asparagus.
I also made a Cranberry Lemon Cake from A Hippie with a Minivan's blog and it was goooooooood

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Election

Here is a great article about how, as Christians, we should be looking at the outcome of this election.

Thats about as much as you'll get out of me, I try not to go to far into politics with people I don't know and most of the time even with people I do know. I will be praying for our future president the same as I pray for the current one and I encourage you all to do the same. I will enjoy the blessed silence of all the political ads!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

The Big 3-0


Sunrise in Hawaii on my birthday
So you all might remember that my 30th birthday was a couple of weeks ago, it happened to fall while I was in Hawaii (yes I planned it like that). It was a wonderful day spent relaxing on the beach in Hawaii, then frantically packing our condo (we got the check out time wrong), walking around Waikiki and topping it off by taking a 14 hour plane trip. Interspersed in there were some great phone calls from friends and family wishing me a happy birthday. I felt (and feel) incredibly loved and blessed to have the friends and family that I have. My mom met me at work the next day with cake for the office, a gift and a balloon (yes, she's that sweet). The hubs got me an awesome present in an old lady bike with a bell (he gave me a choice and I was like OLD LADY BIKE HERE I COME!!!). Just have to pick up some velour track suits and I'm ready for the grandkids.... errrr... kids.. whatever :)
Pics of my birthday party friends top row right to left: Mama K, Eminstitches, Dirkey, Kitten Mom, bottom row: Anne, Tamara, Gelsey and Becky

Well last Saturday the hubs had to work so I had exciting plans to clean my house the whole day then have Mama K, Eminstitches and my very unbloggy friend Tamara over for some leftover chicken soup. Well Mama K showed up first and we're talking then the doorbell rings and its a bunch of my good friends with balloons, a feather boa and a princess hat (compliments of Kitten Mom). They brought a whole fondue party over to my house!! We had some incredible cheese and chocolate fondue, crazy drinks and then a choice of a bunch of movies (I picked Love Guru). It was so incredibly sweet of everyone. I was amazed at the amount of planning that went into it too, to bring all those ingredients over, to have everyone show up at the right time, to really think of something that I would like. I'm still overwhelmed with gratitude to the really great friends that I have! I am a very blessed girl!
Also next party at my house cause jeez louis they all left a bunch of booze!

Go VOTE!!!


Line to vote 11/4/08
Todays the day, get out and vote!
We have a great responsibility to vote for who we feel is the best for us now.
The hubs and I have already gone early this morning and were happy to see a nice long line.
Buut we didn't get a sticker, I think with all my taxes I should at least get an "I voted" sticker!!
Now to pick up my freebies:
Starbucks-Get a free tall brewed coffee when you tell the Starbucks barista that you voted
Also I heard Ben and Jerry's are giving out free ice cream 5-8pm, Krispy Kreme is giving away free donuts and Chick Fil A is giving away free chicken sandwhiches.

I'm only rocking the starbucks but you should get all the voting freebies you can!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Rustic Butternut Squash with Linguini

Oh mama thats the stuff.
I was trying to think of what to make with a yummie looking butternut squash that I have had.  Today I was inspired by one of my favorite reads, Apartment Therapy The Kitchen when they had an article about how butternut squash tastes amazing roasted with butter and thyme.  
I thinly sliced my squash and roasted it in layers with sliced portabellos, mozzerella, provolone, lots of fresh garlic, pepper, salt, onion powder, thyme, sage and pats of butter.  When it was all layered up I poured about a half cup of cream on top. I put this mixture in the oven at 450 degrees until it bubbled and the squash was tender.
I mixed this into some linguini and let me just say FANTASTIC!!!
A really nice rustic tasting fall dish :)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Happy Halloween


Check out the hubs and my pumpkins for '08.
As you can tell we have some fun with these :)
Mine is Frankie and Jason did Mac. 
Hope everyone has a safe and fun day, I will update after the PARADE!!!
Wooooo Go Phillies!!!!

Probably the funniest thing I've ever seen

So my mom brought me over a bag of things that I left at their house. As usual there were melted candles and assorted trash but there was also my 7-8 yr old diary. This thing is HILARIOUS.
I have posted below EXACTLY what was written as my seven year old self cracks me up!!

My Daddy is here My Mommy Is talking to my daddy
My mom said my brother is smart mouthing
She's still talking
im sitting like I always do
My brother I's eating candy and he still is doing it
October 2, 1986

Still eating candy or smart mouthing???? curious minds want to know 7 yr old Dirkey, spill


Oct 3, 1086
Some freands there thi ing to see you there still trigning IQ Allison I's being good so is Amanda: that's it

Oct 4
I have a good fac or dayved dut the rest was werde

seriously what in the world does that mean!!!

October 14 (my 8th birthday)
I woke up to a sparcling day it was my bierthday it was amseing
I had a good day at sclool
then came the berthday party
My sister came she yelled at me I almost cryd but I had a good party.

October 18
my brothers moing the lon he looks dorky


Seriously this thing is cracking me up..  Some thoughts on this:

1.) My sisters are way lucky there are 3 of them and I don't remember who made me almost cry on my 8th birthday!!
2.) I love the spelling errors in this 
3.)I really want to know what I was talking about Oct 3-4th

Congrats Phillies!!!



Wow, such an amazing game last night!!! 28 years in waiting and the Phillies have pulled it off!!
Its good to live in the Philly area right now!!! I'm so excited to see the hometown team win on their own turf. You could feel the excitement as you watched the THOUSANDS in the streets and heard the firecrackers go off right in your own neighborhood. I'm taking of tomorrow to go to the parade.

WAY TO GO PHILLIES!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Daddy


So my dad is coming over tonight for a birthday dinner, so as is customary I made him a birthday cake last night. As you know my birthday cakes aren't usually the normal run of the mill type jobs, I like to have fun with them, and if you know my father you know that this one is especially appropriate.

The hubs and I were happy to have two really good friends over last night helping us with this tremendous undertaking. My friend Lisa kept singing "I think your tractors sexy" song and lets just say that after about 2 hours of cream cheese icing intake we were having a good time. There may have been another cake decorated with a plastic Captain Kirk and something about a sexy starship written on it but I'll just leave that to your imagination.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Hawaii Day 4 Pics

So here are some pics from our Day 4, our spa day. We had such a relaxy day with a HUGE breakfast then swimming all day then off to the spa for couples massages. I wish I had a picture of where we had our massages. It was literally a 3 sided grass hut with the open side overlooking the ocean. The last picture was in the separate spa area that you sat with your robes looking out over the ocean and in our case the sunset.

One of the surfer guys that we were watching (if you would believe it I'll pretend it was the hubs)

The beach, totally reminds me of Gilligans Island. :)

Ginger Flower

Plumeria, as you can tell I fell in love with the flowers and was sooo close to getting a plumeria tattoo but as normally happens when I want a tattooo; I changed my mind.

Sunset

Saturday, October 25, 2008

I couldn't have said it better

Always vote for principle, 
though you may vote alone, 
and you may cherish the sweetest reflection 
that your vote is never lost." 
-- John Quincy Adams

Just Sayin...

Friday, October 24, 2008

You're not the artistic one

Pic of Leaves taken by Dirkey 10/24/08

Its funny the things you remember from your childhood. Being the youngest of six I think we were all type-casted from the beginning. I can understand this just a way to differentiate between everyone; there's the bad one, the smart one, the quick one, the athletic one, the geeky one, etc... I remember one specific time though, my mom needed something drawn and she choose my brother to do it because he was the artistic one. I don't know why but ever since that moment I have always questioned my artistic talent doubting my vision for things. In the past few years I have been breaking out of this and just trying my hand at some artistic things and finding out that hey, I'm not that bad. I LIKE creating something that fits what I see in my mind. I love capturing the world the way I see it with my camera. I guess it took me 30 years to figure out that I don't have to be the "best" at anything in order for me to enjoy it and as far as the arts go can anyone really be the "best"?

I went over my friend Anne's house last night and spent a good amount of time with her daughter Erika. Erika is probably one of the most talented artists that I know, I love her vision for things and her natural artistic tendencies, as far as personal style I think she has the best that I know of(just so unique). She had a pen and ink set that we were fooling around with that I just fell in love with. I got a set today with my "fun" money and I'm so excited to play around with it and express myself in that way.

I guess I'm just learning not to be so hard on myself and to allow myself to enjoy trying things and sharing them with others.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Hawaii Day Three Pics


This awesome old Theatre had about 5 events for First Friday including a pretty good musician. Old Theatres are also probably my favorite places to explore SCORE!!

This was the childrens area of the Bishop Museum. I love that the hubs and I can just be silly and have a good time together. Its nice to be able to do things like this with your best friend.

The hubs taking stock of his surroundings on his trusty steed.

This was a wind wall, I just liked the way the picture turned out.

This was a VERY small museum dedicated to Hawaiian pop culture, I just liked the way this display of drink stirers looked.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Hawaii-Day 2 Pictures


We woke up to watch the sunrise over the ocean (yes we woke up that early!) From there we headed to the Dole Pineapple plantation, where we saw these two adorable birdees.
While at the Dole Pineapple Plantation we dined on delectable Pineapple Ice Cream

and Pineapple Juice

Then we went out to do the Pineapple Maze (the worlds largest maze). When I say we did it I mean Jason got us through it and I took pictures of pretty flowers.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hawaii Pics pt 1-Minnesota

So I mentioned before that on the way out to Hawaii we had a layover in Minnesota (a.k.a. the frozen arctic tundra). Many of you know that my sister Anna lives in this tundra with her husband and her two little frozen children. I haven't seen her or her kids since January when I went to help her after her daughter was born. Yes, you read that right. I AM the best sister in the world, I went to MINNESOTA in JANUARY to help a sista out.
Me and K in Jan
So as kids are proned to do she has changed in the nine months that followed that little visit and I was floored to see the beauty she has become.


It was so great to see my sister and the kids. I hope its sooner rather than later that I get to visit with her again.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Big News In Dirkey Land


So many of you know that I have a great neice and a great nephew that are incredibly adorable. Well right before we left for our Hawaii trip we talked to their mama and she had some news. She is in the navy and is getting new orders to go to a new city and spend some time on some big ship for 4 weeks at a time. You can imagine that this would be pretty hard for a single parent to pull off, as the twins (who will be at about 13 months when this happens) aren't very good at watching themselves for weeks on end. This is where the hubs and I come in, starting sometime in January we will start to watch these adorable kiddo's for her until she is able to have them with her again. I put in my notice and my last day at my current job is in December to give me some time to get my house in order and do some babyproofing. The babyproofing is necessary because in my 30 years on this planet (as of last Tuesday) I have caught the nasty virus of the knick-knack. I've heard that knick-knacks don't really go well with young babies unlesss they are in the paddy-whack give a dog a bone variety.

I visited with my niece and the baby's this weekend and realized the need of some baby-refreshers before the kiddo's arrive. At one time I was quite skilled with the whole changing diaper and clothes routine but my skills are pretty rusty. My grand niece crawled away from me blindfolded while I was trying to put her shirt over her head(my family is blessed with HUGE craniums so shirts are difficult). My grand nephew and I made some headway and I was able to comfort him when he was crying (a couple of times anyway). I have a feeling that the first couple weeks we have them will be pretty interesting and time consuming until I get this whole twin thing down. They really are the most adorable things coming or going so that will make up for whatever shananagans we get ourselves into.

So if any of you have any tips for me, lay them on me. I look forward to being at home, its a little scary to go down to the one income (ok alot scary) so tips on that would also be appreciated. I'll be updating more on the Hawaii trip and actually add pictures this week! I know, wow, content!!

Friday, October 17, 2008

My Flip

So I think I mentioned here that I bought the amazing Flip Video for the hubs for his birthday. When I got it I also splurged for the underwater case knowing that we would be LOVING that bad boy in Hawaii! Well when we got to Hawaii we found out that the underwater case wasn't working so well and the whole thing broke about 4 days into our trip. BOOO!!!!! The day it broke we were in Hanauma Bay, one of the best snorkelling destinations in the world, and about 5 minutes after it broke we saw a Hammerhead shark!!! OH MY GOSH DO I WISH THAT THING WAS WORKING THEN!!!!! Here's the letter I sent to them, I'll let you know what I get back.


Hello,
I'm writing to let you know what happened with my flip video. You see, my husband and I have been saving our pennies for a trip to Hawaii. We are keenly aware that this could very well be our last real vacation as we are looking to start a family soon and we hear kids are pretty expensive. For my husbands birthday in August I ordered the Flip Video with the Underwater case so that we could record and remember this major trip. At first we were in love with its simplicity, and talked so many of our friends into purchasing as well. Then we took it on our trip. The first few days it was fine, but then we tried it underwater (with the underwater case). The underwater case did not keep out the water and the camera hasn't started since. Sadly the day it broke we were in Hanauma Bay, one of the best snorkeling locations in the world and also the ENTIRE reason we bought the flip video with the underwater case. We are back from our vacation now and are understandably devastated that we weren't able to capture the majority of our trip like we had planned to. I have enclosed our invoice below, please let me know how you plan to rectify this situation.
Sincerely and with a broken heart,
Dirkey

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Day 7-Waimea

We went to Waimea beach, this is one of my favorite places on the island.  Once you get passed the initial waves its like a big ocean bathtub, I LUV it!  We took our snorkels out and saw about 5,000 silver fish under us at one point.  They were all swimming around and it looked like they were being herded by these really long pointy fish.  I loved just floating there and watching them swim about.  We swam for about 2-3 hours there, its so nice and calm.  There is a big jumping rock that I went off of last time I was there, the hubs wasn't too interested in jumping 30 ft off of a rock so we just watched the kids do it. 
From there we drove around, got some shave ice's then went to the part of the island that there are not roads.  You can basically drive around the island with views of the ocean until you hit one point; there are no roads to that point and if you want to see it you have to hike it.  We hiked a bit then drove back home and went swimming.

You think I can stay here?  Tomorrow we're going swimming with SHARKS!  AHHH!!!!  Then we're going to see my aunt at the Ko Olina Beach :)

Day 6-Relax

We spend Monday just relaxing.  The hubs picked up some spam at the grocery store so we could have an authentic breakfast.  It was not that horrible (and it horrifies me to admit that).  After breakfast we stayed around here and swam a bit in the ocean and in the pool and just relaxed.  At about 4 we decided we wanted to go into Honolulu so we went to the Pali lookout on the way.  The Pali lookout is at the top of the mountain range that separates Honolulu from the Southeastern part of the island.  The Hawaiian king Kamehameha was said to fight the battle of Oahu here with the losers running off the cliff to their death; he eventually conquered all of the islands and unified Hawaii for the first time.  From the Pali lookout you can pretty much see most of the Eastern (windward) side of the island.  From there we went into Waikiki and tried to catch the torch lighting ceremony but we were too late.  We ended up walking around Waikiki and just checking out all the fancy shops, laughing at how much people pay for weird things they are never going to use.  The hubs picked up a cigar so we went down to the beach and he smoked and I played with my camera and the lighting.  Got some pretty fun shots of Waikiki and whatnot.  From there we got lost on the way home and ended up going the super long way back.  It was a fun ride tons of twists and turns and ocean views, yes even at 11pm you can have an ocean view.  We got back to the rental and just crashed.

Day 5-Pearl Harbor

The hubs and I spend Sunday going to Pearl Harbor and the other museums around there.  Its so sobering to take that water taxi over to the monument to the USS Arizona, to stand above what became a tomb to so many.  Before we went over we walked through the exhibit of some of the artifacts found on ship and read some of the story's that were told.  One, in particular, stood out.  It was a letter written by a woman to her sister, expressing anxiety over not knowing if her son was ok.  You could tell she was panicked just by the way the letter was so scattered one moment talking about the son the next asking about mundane.  At the end it tells you the woman lost both of her twin boys that day.  In the taxi my eyes lift up to the skies and try to imagine them filled with enemy aircraft and to see what those boys saw that day.  Trying to imagine the hopelessness they might have felt as they sat there like sitting ducks.  Of course I can't imagine but for some reason just trying feels like my own personal tribute to them. 

From there we went to Bowfin museum which is a real submarine.  I was pretty surprised at how big it was.  We were able to go down into it and see all the inards.  I don't think I would be good at being a submariner, not so much the lack of space but the lack of fresh air would creep me out.  Its a good thing that was never really one of my choices for occupation.  

Next we went to the USS Missouri, the Mighty Mo.  It was pretty interesting walking around that big battleship.  It was a 1.6 mile walk through the whole thing (I thought that was pretty amazing in its own).  We got to see a good amount of the ship, it was neat to look at the life of a navy sailor.  The part I thought was the most interesting is the deck where the peace treaty was signed in Tokyo harbor to end WW2.  We were able to sneak in with a guided tour for this last part and here him give all the added details into what we were looking at by walking us through that day.  It was neat to be able to see where the war started for us and where it ended with the Japanese.

After that we went to the Pacific Aviation Museum, which sucked.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Hawaii Day 4-the imposters

Today we wanted to go to the Royal Hawaiian for breakfast, its on the beach of Waikiki and the view is just a sea of white and pink umbrellas its really pretty.  It, however, is closed for renovations and they are taking away all the pink and white umbrellas, boo.  So we went to Turtle Bay for their breakfast buffet and holy moly was it good.  Our favorites were the smoked salmon, the smoked ahi, the waffles with coconut syrup and the sticky buns with macadamia nuts.  Nom nom nom sooo good!!  We definitely got our fill from breakfast and decided to mascarade as resort guests.  Turtle Bay Resort is located on a Peninsula so basically everywhere you go you have a view of the ocean.  We took advantage of their pools our favorite being their 4 ft pool with a slide, the slide was AWESOME so fast!  I did get a slight shoulder injury from flinging myself down the slide trying to get momentum.  We swam all day long in their pools, relaxed in the hot tubs and went down to the ocean for awhile and swam there.   While at turtle bay we booked a couples oceanside massage, after we paid for that I didn't feel too bad about using all their amenities.  We left to grab some shrimp from a shrimp truck before our appointment.

For the massage they bring you to this little hut with three walls, with the open wall being to the ocean.  Inside they have two massage tables set up for you.  It was seriously the BEST massage.  The guy giving me mine used just the right amount of pressure.  The hubs liked his massage as well.  It was so nice getting a massage while listening to the waves crash on the rocks and the birds chirping-so much better than a cd!  

After our massages we headed back and hit the sack.  Tired from all that swimming!!!

Hawaii Day 3

We woke up later (around 7:30-8:30) and went straight out swimming in the ocean to check our our snorkels and fins.  The current was crazy strong but the fins really helped.  I saw a couple of fish one was long and black and white striped with what looked like fingers on his tail.  I also saw a whole school of silvery looking small fish.  We did a few laps in the pool after that then headed out to find breakfast.  Breakfast ended up being a very sorry affair, it was supposedly a local favorite the "Loco-Moco".  The Loco Moco is rice toped with a burger topped with an egg.  This was more like Encore frozen dinner Salisbury Steak, it was nasty!  We stopped at this gift shop/restaurant for it, the gift shop had some interesting gifts (A wooden version of male genetalia wearing a grass skirt that was an ashtray).  Needless to say we didn't buy anything (well except for one of those bad boys for mama k).  
After our craptacular breakfast we went on to Honolulu and to the Bishop Museum.  The Bishop Museum was pretty interesting and explained a good deal about the royal Hawaiian family, geology, history and ecology.  The hubs and I had a good time in the science center, you could simulate a volcano using hot wax, dress up as native Hawaiian animals, drive a underwater camera, make a two store volcano erupt.  I loved learning all about the royal family cause I'm a sucker for a good biography.  There were also artifacts from all over Polynesia.  
After that we walked around Waikiki for awhile then went to a good sushi restaurant.  This one was not fast food and it was soooo good!!!  The hubs and I are freaks about sushi so we were really looking forward to some crazy sushi eating while here.  From there we went onto First Friday, First Friday is when all of the gallery's have open houses.  Many of them have live music and wine as well.  We had such a good time walking from gallery to gallery looking at everything.  The Hawaii Theater (which was a gorgeous old Theatre) had live music up in their piano bar, so we went and looked around the theatre and then checked out the musician.  I got to tell all my fiber arts people that there were 2 or 3 galleries dedicated to just fiber arts, I was pretty impressed at how well they were represented.  After we got done with first friday we headed back to our rental and hit the sack.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Hawaii Day 2

Yesterday started out with breakfast on the Lanai.  From there we were just winging it.  We took a drive up to the north shore and stopped to watch some surfers along a couple of beaches.  We stopped to get some shave ice at Matsumoto's.  We walked around Hale-iwa which is a cute little town with lots of little shops, we didn't really buy anything but had a good time walking around.  From there we drove down through the middle of Oahu and stopped at the Dole Pineapple Plantation.  Let me just say it was Pineapple-tacular.  The hubs and I were cracking up at the amount of pineapple paraphanalea, they really had ANYTHING you could imagine.  After we had some pineapple juice and pineapple ice cream we walked out to the WORLD'S LARGEST MAZE.  I was interested till we found the first mark (there were 8 that you had to find) then I followed the hubs and looked at the pretty scenery.  The hubs is particularly skilled with large pineapple mazes I found out and we found all of the marks we had to hit very easily.  It amazes me sometimes how we fit together, he is good with details that I have no time or patience for and I'm much better looking at the whole picture.
After the Pineapple plantation we needed to go to the store cause schmoop forgot his sunglasses.  We found a Ross and got sunglasses and also a Hawaiian shirt for his dad as a thank you for driving us to the airport.  The hubs needed a haircut so we went to do that next and then onto Walmart (they didn't really have too many other options and Jason needed a snorkle).  After all that we were Jonesing for some sushi so we went to this sushi place in a strip mall and if you can believe it, it was pretty much fast food sushi.  They had pictures of everything they had and it was all assigned one of four colors.  Each color had a price associated with it and at the end they just added up how many red's, blue's, green's and yellows you had. You sat down at a counter that had a conveyor belt attached to it with jars of wasabi slowly making their trip around.  We only spent around $20 and were sushi stuffed (that usually costs us about $50-60.  Ha ha one of the things we ordered was spam sushi, which apparently is HUGE here for breakfast cause we have seen it EVERYWHERE.  After that we went back to our rental.
We decided we had to check out our new fins for snorkeling so the hubs and I had a fin race down to the ocean.  I don't know if you have ever tried to run/walk in flippers but it is really hard, let alone trying to pass someone!!  We went out in the ocean a bit then into the pool for a few more laps then to bed.. Seriously it was 8pm we were tired!!.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Hawaii Pt 1

Was having a problem posting, this was written on the first day.  We are "borrowing" an internet connection and it won't allow me to post pictures.. grrrrrr

Let me just tell you that I feel infinitely better than I ever have.  As I write I'm sitting on the Lanai of our rental and watching the sunrise over the ocean.  The hubs and I woke up around 4 am and took a walk on the beach.  It was so soothing just walking on the ocean with noone around, watching crabs crisscross in front of us and run into the ocean to get out of our paths.  We sat down to take a look at the stars and just watch the waves break and listen to the sounds of the ocean.  Out of the corner of my eye I saw something glimmer as a wave hit it and it ended up being a little piece of phosphorescent something (maybe sand?!).  We found a few more little pieces and watched them glow in our hands like I used to a long time ago with lightening bugs.  When we got back we made a nice breakfast and brought it out to the Lanai (where I am right now).
It really seems that just every piece of this trip has been extremely blessed.  There were a few things we were hoping for that we weren't quite sure they would come to be.  The first thing was that our connecting flight was through Minneapolis and I was hoping and wishing we might be able to see my sister and her family.  Buuut our layover was only for about an hour so we were thinking it wouldn't happen.  As it ended up our plane landed a half hour early and my sister happened to check it and rush her two kids over to visit.  I can't even tell you how happy that made me to be able to see them for just a little bit.  The last time I saw her baby girl was when I was up for her birth and now she is just the most curious little baby!  I was holding her and she would quietly check out everything around her, whipping her little body all over the place to check things out.  She also is WAY cuter than any of her pictures (maybe my sister should take some classes or something, lol!).  It definitely made my trip to be able to see them and we hadn't even gotten to our destination yet!!!  
The next plane ride was LONG!  We were sandwiched in between two people in the middle row of a HUGE airplane.  I watched 4 movies (one of them being Baby Mama-again!) and we still had time.  Ended up talking to the girl next to me, she was on her way to see her husband who is stationed out here for the army getting ready to be deployed to Afghanastan.  She's here for exactly the same amount of time we are so I'm definitely praying that she is able to have a wonderful vacation and time together with her hubs.  ok ok so we landed and took the shuttle to pick up our car.  We reserved a convertible which was either going to be a Sebring or a Mustang.  The hubs really wanted a mustang so I let the woman helping us know that it would make his vacation.  She said they are usually reserved for upgrades but she would check for us.  She ended up handing us the keys to a gorgeous silver mustang convertible!!!
We drove up to our rental and went straight to the ocean (ok ok maybe not straight there lol!). The water was so crystal clear and it was amazing just floating and swimming with noone else around enjoying the views of palm trees and open ocean.  From there we went to a shrimp truck for dinner, shrimp trucks are pretty popular on the north shore and considering our considerable love of all things seafood I knew we would be visiting several times.  The one we went to was called Yoshimura and the family that ran it was so incredibly sweet.  They fixed us some AMAZING garlic shrimp then when we were ready to go they invited us to join them in their dinner we were so full but tasted some and it was so good!  As we were leaving they told us what they were making for the rest of the week and invited us back to eat with them.  I am always amazed at the kindness of strangers on our travels, we have really met some wonderful people!
So if you haven't been able to tell I'm going to use this blog as sort of a travel journal to document our time here.  

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Here Kitty Kitty Kitty grrrrrrr

So you all know I got a new kitten awhile ago. This kitten is a sweetie but he has a little too much energy. He also LOVES any container with water: his water bowl, the toilet, vases, the watering can. He will knock over any vase with flowers wherever it might be. He will also jump on the top of the couch and root through the curtains and the window shade to try to get the watering can that is on the windows ledge. Seriously containers of water are like crack to my kitten and its getting kinda old to me.
Last night I was laying on the couch playing on my computer and the kitten jumped up and was messing with the curtains. I had it and reached up to swat him down. Well apparently I should have paid more attention cause the cat landed on my face. I know a close up of my face is totally what you want to see in the morning so here we go (bonus grumpy face to get the point across):


Here is a close up on the damage on my schnozz: