When we moved into our house two and half years ago, we happily noted that the doorknobs were located slightly higher on the door than normal.  This meant that while Ella could open the doors at others' homes, she could not do so at our home.

Which was great.

However, once Ella could reach the doorknobs, the doorknob to her bedroom began to stick.  It would turn a little, but wouldn't engage.

So, like every good daughter would do, I called my daddy.

He took off the doorknob, added some graphite, and reattached it, and it worked marvelously.

For a few days.

But it quickly returned to its sticky ways, and once, while trying to open it to let Ella out, (who was inside freaking out that she couldn't open the door) Tom turned too hard and we heard a loud crack.  We took the doorknob off, and got the door open fairly quickly, but it was obvious that it was not repairable.  To solve the problem more quickly, we moved the knob from the hall closet to her bedroom door.  We bought a new knob for the closet, and I lamented that we had to buy a gold one to match the other knobs. 

A few months passed, and soon, it was the bathroom door.

We quickly replaced the knob, since being stuck in the bathroom would be an unpleasant experience for anyone.

Just recently I've noticed that the kids' (Ella and Rico's) doorknob is getting sticky.  I've put it on my mental to-do list, but I haven't made it to Home Depot for a new knob.

But today, while Ella was having her rest time in Louie's room, she asked me to bring her water cup.  I filled it up and brought it over, and could not get the door open.  The knob would turn and turn, but would not open.


Finally, I got it to open, gave her her water, and told her not to close the door all the way.

Two minutes later I heard the door click shut and her cry of dismay.

Again, I tried and tried to get it open, but with no luck.

I grabbed my handy screwdriver and took the knob part off, but could not get the latch mechanism to budge.  Ella was calm (thank goodness) but despite my attempts with pliers, keys, brute force, credit card, butter knife, I could not get the door open.

I emailed Tom to apprise him of the situation, but he didn't have any brilliant ideas. 

I walked outside and had Ella climb up on the windowsill to unlock the window.  I removed the screen, and with my help from the outside, she opened the window and I pulled her out.

After depositing her on the couch, I went back through the window to see if I would have better luck from the other side. 

Finally, after wedging a butter knife between the door and the jamb from the inside of the door, I was able to use a credit card to successful open the door from the outside.

So now (and hour later), Lou has no doorknob, and I will have replaced 4 of the six of the interior doorknobs in my house.  But since it was one at a time, they are all still ugly gold.




Though I have grown and cut and grown my hair since this post, it's back at about this length.  But this time Louie and I can be twins!

 {Sorry for the poor photo quality.  Camera phone+wiggly baby≠good pictures}

I made this recipe last night, but tried it out with carrots instead.  And the result: super yummy.  I cut the oil in half (which I did the second time I made it with squash, too) and stirred in some peas with the parmesan cheese.  It was perfect!

After four mediocre to downright bad hair days, I finally made another batch of this yesterday, and am sooo glad I did.  Words cannot say what a difference it makes!

And my bibliophile friends may remember this post.  But whether or not you do, my friends over at fabulous reads are doing another giveaway, this time for a signed copy of Fablehaven, if I'm not mistaken.  Which is, I affirm, a fabulous read.


Entertainment Tonight

I've been asked a couple of times how I entertain my kids all day, since they don't watch TV and only watch one movie per week.

The short answer is: I don't know.

The slightly longer answer is: I don't.  They entertain themselves.

(Of course, as I type this, Ella just walked into the room and is chanting "I want to play with you, Mommy!") 

But for the most part, Ella and Rico are great at entertaining each other and/or themselves.  Last night while I was making dinner for example, they played happily in their room.  First doctor (I could hear Ella saying "Please, doctor, I NEED two more shots!), then they built bunk beds out of a couple chairs and a box, then turned that into an airplane.  Rico will spend hours doing puzzles.  Ella could color every piece of paper in this house and still not be done.  They also enjoy playing blocks, cars, play dough, reading, drawing/coloring (or scribbling, if you're Rico), and many other things. 

Even Louie is amazingly independent.  She loves being with the big kids and watching/playing with them, but she frequently crawls off to the toybox and plays on her own, or over to the bookshelf and "reads" book after book.  Also, she takes two naps a day.  That makes for much less time for entertainment.

I'm not trying to say that I don't play with them, because I do, but they are quite impressive in their ability to amuse themselves while I get things done.  And when I play with them, they are usually the ones with the idea for what we're going to play.  (And since they are related to me, they are frequently quite opinionated.)


Still kicking

I'm not sure where I've been the last several weeks... okay, month.

It's been busy, for sure, but nothing too out of the ordinary.

And since my last post was anything but personal or exciting, I have prepared for you a little snapshot of life at this moment.

I'm on my last week of this, and I'm ready to be done being perfect.  Though I really do want to keep up the habits I've formed.  I haven't been running, though, and I miss it.  I need a partner to motivate me to get out of bed. (Any volunteers?)  Hopefully the warmer weather (that will be arriving any day, right? RIGHT?!?) will help.  And I still read, but only occasionally.  Except the Book of Mormon.  I'm totally plowing through that.  I haven't read it cover to cover in quite a while, and decided it was time again.  It's so good!  If you're not familiar with it, I highly recommend it.  You can get one here for free.  Even hand delivered.  Or just ask, I have a couple extra copies I would be happy to share.

Tom's been filling out applications like a mad man. (If you know anyone with an in to educational administration in the area, feel free to drop names. Tom's, that is.)  And doing homework like a mad man.  And trying to keep up at work.  And spend time with the family.  And still get enough sleep.  (But that never happens.)

Ella's been working on "letters of the week" and loving it.  This week it's H.  For Hotdog. And Holiday. (As in: "It's a jolly holiday with Mary!")  We watch Mary Poppins every other week (they take turns picking out the movie each Friday).  We'll be watching it again tomorrow.  She says she'll pick it every time until she dies.  Which had better not be soon.

Rico is a persistent little man.  He has been since birth, actually.  Sometimes that's a good thing.  But not so much right now.  Right now he likes to yell and scream.  Over and over and over and over and over.  Until Ella goes crazy and starts yelling at him to stop.  And no one can get a word in edge-wise.  So he gets air-lifted to his bed, until he's ready to be quiet.  It's a really fun game.  Or not.

Louie is not talking, despite the fact that I said she was.  I still maintain that she was using "thank you" and "mama" correctly and consistently, but that is no longer the case.  She babbles almost constantly, but it has no discernible meaning to anyone beside herself.  And she isn't walking either.  I'm not worried, but a little surprised.  I'm sure she'll get around to it soon enough.  And heaven help me when she does!

So there you have it.

Until next time.

Which will hopefully not be as long.

But I make no promises.

A penny saved...

We go through a lot of diapers in this house.


Despite the fact that I wish Rico were potty-trained, this has not (as yet) become a reality.  And hence, the multitude of diapers. 

Being the frugal, but lazy, person that I am, I buy diapers at Costco.  I'm sure I could get them cheaper with sales and coupons combined somewhere else, but I don't have time to figure all that out.  Plus, dragging 3 kids to an extra store just to buy one thing (even if it is a great! deal!) just doesn't work for me.

But what works even better than getting them from Costco?

Buying them from diapers.com.

Then I don't even have to try and cram them onto my cart with everything else.  They are delivered right to my door (for free, if your order is over $49), and they are competetively priced with Costco's.

That is, if you have a referral code.

Like JANE6319.

For first-time customers, this little code will save you $10.00 off your purchase.  (And, since it's a personal referral code, it will earn me a $5 credit.)  Buy two boxes of diapers (to get you over that $49 threshold) and that will bring the per unit price to below Costco.  (At least on the size 3's, that's the one I did the math on).

And they don't just sell diapers.  They sell pretty much anything you need to equip yourself for a baby.  (And if you find yourself buying non-diaper related items in addition, use code PLUS10PCT for 10% off those additional items.)

And, for even more savings, if you use Ebates, you can earn 1-4% cash back on all your purchases!
(If you're not familiar with Ebates, and shop online a fair bit, click here for a lovely $5 referral bonus for both of us.)

I'll get off my soap box now.  You may return to your everyday lives.