Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Sunday, September 30, 2007

The First to be Potty-Trained....

With much anticipation, we are proud to announce that we have one potty-trained. And "The First to be Potty-Trained" award goes to.....


Yes, folks, Elmo is the first to be potty-trained in our house. I bet you've never seen Elmo tee-tee on the potty, huh? And I also bet we are the first household to successfully potty-train him. However, I must give BB the credit. He worked hard all of 5 minutes conquering this tough feat. Words can't express our excitement...literally. BB seems to know when Elmo needs to tee-tee. Now if we can get BB to let us know when he needs to.

BB working hard at his goal of potty-training Elmo.

Seriously, though. We have begun to "explore" the wilds of potty-training. I wouldn't say that we are very serious with this just simply exploring. We set them on the potty and if after 5 to 10 minutes they haven't gone, we take them off and go about our day. CB seems to be picking it up a little quicker than BB. Which has been typical in their development with BB catching on a couple weeks later. CB has told us a few times that he needed to tee-tee and actually went within seconds of being on the potty but still doesn't mind using his diaper to the fullest, literally. BB, however, replies, "No Sir" when asked if he needs to tee-tee on the potty. We usually put him on it anyway while sometimes he goes and sometimes he doesn't. We aren't feeling any pressure and just taking it one day at a time. Now check back with me this time next year...things maybe different.

“A child can go only so far in life without potty training. It is not mere coincidence that six of the last seven presidents were potty trained, not to mention nearly half of the nation's state legislators.”~ humorist, Dave Berry

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Riding in Boats with Boys

Last Thursday, the boys and I went cruisin' on the Rez with Pappaw in his boat. My dad bought 2 life jackets several weeks ago in preparationing that one day the boys would be cruisin' around with him. The boys loved the wind blowing on their face as much as they loved the water splashing on them. We cruised for about an hour til the wind picked up and the water began to get choppy. It was quite entertaining and humorous watching the boys maneuver around in their life jackets. The jackets are so "puffy" that they would fall over like turtles on their back and couldn't get up. Daddy called them rolly-pollies.

We look forward to the next cruise. The boys are already asking, "Pappaw's Boat?" I've added a slide show of more pictures from the day at the bottom of the post. Hope you enjoy.

Pappaw just thinks he's the one driving.

A rolly-pollie moment..."I've fallen and I can't get up"

Getting cheesy with Cheetos

“There is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ~Kenneth Graham

Monday, September 24, 2007

You can't be Serious!?!?

Man claims dry burp flawed breath test

A man arrested for allegedly driving drunk is fighting to get his license back, saying his breath test was flawed because he was burping at the time.

Stratham Police Officer Christopher Call was asked to give Cronin a breath test. But before the test could be administered, Call was required to observe Cronin for 20 minutes. During the 20-minute period, Cronin told Call that he had burped. Under administrative rules, police are required to restart the 20-minute observation period if a person "vomits, regurgitates or belches" during that time.

After learning of the burp, Call restarted the observation period, the appeal said. Following the observation, Cronin was given a breath test, which allegedly showed he had a blood alcohol level of 0.12 percent. The level a driver is considered drunk is .08 percent.

Before a required second sample was taken, Cronin told Call that he had burped again. Call then heard Cronin burp, but described it as a "dry burp," the appeal said. Unsure of what to do because of the burp that occurred before the second sample, Call discussed the problem with Stratham Sgt. David Pierce, who told Call to have Cronin blow into the breath machine a second time and accept the results if they were close to those from the first sample.

The results of that second test put Cronins alleged blood alcohol level at 0.13 percent, court papers said. At a hearing before the state Department of Motor Vehicles, Cronin argued that the rules regarding the administration of a breath test after a driver burps were not followed.

But the hearings examiner ruled that a "dry burp" did not constitute a "belch," and therefore the 20-minute observation period did not need to be restarted again. The examiner also found that the "gaseous mix that flowed out of (Cronins) mouth had not emanated from (his) stomach and contained nothing but air," the appeal said.

However, Cronins appeal said the examiner never explained how he found this "distillation process" had occurred.

I found this through the Miami Herald website. I did remove a few paragraphs in order to shorten the post. So to give the article full was found through

Until next time, "give me a break", HB

Get Gizzie's Ball!

This is a common seen these days when it's time to go to bed. JB and I rock the boys every night before we put them down. While we are rocking, Gizzie is usually vying for attention by pushing her ball under furniture knowing she can't get it herself. She then will bark, sigh, moan, growl until she gets it back. So here we go...the boys get down hollering..."Get Dizzie's boll!!" As you can see, all 3 heads under the chest of drawers while all 3 booties up in the air trying to retrieve the infamous tennis ball that has been nudged to no one's reach except the parents'. But it wouldn't be a complete effort if the boys didn't try themselves in order to receive their attention from the victory of "getting Dizzie's boll".

Until next time, Here's looking at you, kid...HB

Friday, September 21, 2007

Church Mouse (1)

A drunk was staggering back from the pub one night when he came across a baptism taking place in the river.

He wanted a closer look and, hazily walked right up to the river bank. The preacher saw him and, seeing the inebriated state he was in, decided to save his soul!

He grabbed the drunk, plunging him into the icy water and praying in a loud voice! He lifted his head and asked "now brother...have you found the Lord this day?" "No!" replies the man!

The preacher, taken aback plunges the drunk under the freezing water again. After a time he lets him up again, and asks in a louder voice, if he has yet found the Lord!! To his horror the answer comes back again! "NO!"

Outraged the preacher puts him under the water for a third time and holds him there for a good minute or so! He drags the poor wretch out of the river and shouts "Now, my fallen and unredeemed brother ... for the love of God, have you found the Lord?!"

The man replies..."NO!.... are you sure this is where he fell in?"

This is a fun story from a website my dad sent to me called "Episcopalians for Traditional Faith". On their site they have a section called "Church Mouse" which features fun, entertaining stories such as the one above. I think you will enjoy the few I post, I know I have enjoyed reading them.

Until next, HB

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Halloween Monogramming Projects

For those who have requested, I have posted some of my halloween designs. I still have a few more to sew out for orders so as soon as those are done, I will be posting them also. If you are interested any of them....let me know ASAP as October is around the corner. Thanks to those who are my continued customers and support. I welcome any comments, suggestions, ideas and constructive criticism. I will post the pics here and also in the slide show at the bottom of the page.

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Sweet Mess

CB and I love strawberries. We like them even more with powdered sugar. BB doesn't care for strawberries but as you can see in the pictures he does like some powdered sugar. I left the remaining powdered sugar on the counter. While I was out of sight for a few minutes, the boys managed to get it and thus creating a "sweet mess". I must say...they are a "sweet mess" in more ways than one and I love them for it!

Until next time, I love my "Sweet Messes", HB

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Under 40? You won't Understand....

I had a friend email this to me yesterday. It wouldn't be fair if I didn't blog this also after blogging about the "under 30 crowd". Hope you enjoy and have fun relating.

Black and White TV? You could hardly see for all the snow, Spread the rabbit ears as far as they go. Pull a chair up to the TV set, "Good Night, David. Good Night, Chet."

My Mom used to cut chicken, chop eggs and spread mayo on the same cutting board with the same knife and no bleach, but we didn't seem to get food poisoning. My Mom used to defrost hamburger on the counter and I used to eat it raw sometimes, too. Our school sandwiches were wrapped in wax paper in a brown paper bag, not in icepack coolers, but I can't remember getting ecoli.

Almost all of us would rather have gone swimming in the lake instead of a pristine pool (talk about boring), no beach closures then.

The term cell phone would have conjured up a phone in a jail cell, and a pager was the school PA system.

We all took gym, not PE.. and risked permanent injury with a pair of high top Ked's (only worn in gym) instead of having cross-training athletic shoes with air cushion soles and built in light reflectors. I can't recall any injuries but they must have happened because they tell us how much safer we are now. Flunking gym was not an option... even for stupid kids! I guess PE must be much harder than gym.

Speaking of school, we all said prayers and sang the national anthem, and staying in detention after school caught all sorts of negative attention. We must have had horribly damaged psyches. What an archaic health system we had then. Remember school nurses? Ours wore a hat and everything. I thought that I was supposed to accomplish something before I was allowed to be proud of myself.

I just can't recall how bored we were without computers, Play Station, Nintendo, X-box or 270 digital TV cable stations.

Oh yeah... and where was the Benadryl and sterilization kit when I got that bee sting? I could have been killed!

We played 'king of the hill' on piles of gravel left on vacant construction sites, and when we got hurt, Mom pulled out the 48-cent bottle of Mercurochrome (kids liked it better because it didn't sting like iodine did) and then we got our butt spanked. Now it's a trip to the emergency room, followed by a 10-day dose of a $49 bottle of antibiotics, and then Mom calls the attorney to sue the contractor for leaving a horribly vicious pile of gravel where it was such a threat.

We didn't act up at the neighbor's house either because if we did, we got our butt spanked there and then we got our butt spanked again when we got home. I recall the kid from next door coming over and doing his tricks on the front stoop, just before he fell off. Little did his Mom know that she could have owned our house. Instead, she picked him up and swatted him for being such a goof. It was a neighborhood run amuck.

To top it off, not a single person I knew had ever been told that they were from a dysfunctional family. How could we possibly have known that? We needed to get into group therapy and anger management classes? We were obviously so duped by so many societal ills, that we didn't even notice that the entire country wasn't taking Prozac! How did we ever survive?

Until next time, HB

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Spoiled Under 30 Crowd

If you are 30 or older you will think this is hilarious.

When I was a kid, adults used to bore me to tears with their tedious diatribes about how hard things were when they were growing up; what with walking twenty-five miles to school every morning, uphill BOTH ways. Yadda, yadda, yadda..........

And I remember promising myself that when I grew up, there was no way I was going to boast like that to kids about how hard I had it and how easy they've got it! But now that I'm over the ripe old age of thirty, I can't help but look around and notice the youth of today.

You've got it so easy! I mean, compared to my childhood, you live in Utopia! And I hate to say it but you kids today don't know how good you've got it! I mean, when I was a kid we didn't have the Internet. If we wanted to know something, we had to go to the library and look it up ourselves, in the card catalog!

There was no email! We had to actually write somebody a letter with a pen. Then we had to walk all the way across the street and put it in the mailbox and it would take like a week to get there.

There were no MP3's or Napsters. You wanted to steal music, you had to hitch hike to the record store and shoplift it yourself. Or you had to wait around all day to tape it off the radio and the DJ usually talked over the beginning and ruined it all up.

We didn't have fancy options like Call Waiting. If you were on the phone and somebody else called they got a busy signal, that's it.

And we didn't have fancy Caller ID Boxes either. When the phone rang, you had no idea who it was. It could be your school, your mom, your boss, your bookie, a collections agent, you just didn't know. You had to pick it up and take your chances.

We didn't have any fancy Sony Play station video games with high-resolution 3-D graphics. We had the Atari 2600. With games like 'Space Invaders' and 'asteroids' and the graphics were terrible. Your guy was a little square and you actually had to use your imagination. And there were no multiple levels or screens it was just one screen forever. And you could never win. The game just kept getting harder and harder and faster and faster until you died. Just like LIFE.

When you went to the movie theater there was no such thing as stadium seating. All the seats were the same height. If a tall guy or some old broad with a hat sat in front of you and you couldn't see, you were just screwed.

Sure, we had cable television, but back then that was only like 15 channels and there was no on screen menu and no remote control. You had to use a little book called a TV Guide to find out what was on. You were screwed when it came to channel surfing. You had to get out of your seat and walk over to the TV to change the channel.

And there was no Cartoon Network, either. You could only get cartoons on Saturday morning. Do you hear what I'm saying? We had to wait ALL WEEK for cartoons!

And we didn't have microwaves. If we wanted to heat something up. We had to use the stove...imagine that. If we wanted popcorn, we had to use that stupid Jiffy Pop thing and shake it over the stove forever like an idiot.

You kids today have got it too easy. You're spoiled. You guys wouldn't have lasted five minutes back in 1980's!

The 30 and over Crowd...

I got this through an email and thought it validating and entertaining. I know I am old when I can remember the above metioned and actually relate.

Until next time, "remember when?", HB

Rotel Chicken Spaghetti

1 fryer, cooked and de-boned
1 (12 oz) pkg. spaghetti, cooked
1 cream of mushroom soup
1 cream of chicken soup
2 cans diced Ro-tel
1/2 lb Velveeta cheese
broth (reserved from boiled chicken)

Mix all ingredients. Use broth if the mixture is too thick. Put in greased 9 x 13 casserole dish. Bake at 400 or 425 for about 30 minutes or until bubbly. Sprinkle grated cheese of your choice on top after baking.

Note: I do not use a fryer. Instead I use boneless, skinless chicken breast fillets. After I boil the chicken, I cut into pieces. I measure the amount of chicken based on how much I want in the dish. Also, using 2 cans of Ro-tel makes this dish a little spicier than I like and for children. Instead, I use 1 can of milder Ro-tel. This makes a big helping; therefor, is great for large crowds. It can be divided before cooking with half of it to freeze.

Rating: * * * * * (5 stars)

Until next time, yum-yum, HB

Friday, September 14, 2007

Bet you didn't Know...and You Can't be Serious...

I am attempting to start "Bet you didn't Know" and "You Can't be Serious" posts. The "Bet you didn't Know" posts will basically be about unique, strange and weird facts that we wouldn't normally think about or know. The "You Can't be Serious" posts will basically be about rediculous, "give me a break" news from around the world that deserves the reaction of the title. My dad got me interested in this when he sent some websites that lists them. I will do my best to recognize the source that the info comes from. I do not claim all "facts" to be proven. These are meant to be fun posts that I hope you enjoy.

Bet you didn't Know...

That there are more plastic flamingos than real

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Text Messaging Advise

For those of you who text message on your cell phone. I personally don't text message but have friends and family who do. I received this through an email and decided to blog it instead of forwarding it. I think you will find this to be quite helpful about situations that we don't really think about. I must admit, if I did text, I probably wouldn't have thought about.

A woman has changed her habit of how she lists names on her mobile phone after her handbag was stolen. Her handbag, which contained her mobile, Credit card, checkbook,...etc.... was stolen. 20 minutes later when she called her husband from a pay phone, telling him what had happened, hubby says "I've just received your text asking about our Pin number and I replied a little while ago."

When they rushed down to the bank, the bank staff told them all the money was already withdrawn. The pickpocket had actually used the stolen hand phone to text "hubby" in the contact list and got hold of the pin number. Within 20 minutes he had withdrawn all the money from the bank account.

Moral of the lesson: Do not disclose the relationship between you and the people in your contact list. Avoid using names like Home, Honey, Hubby, sweetheart, Dad, Mom etc....... And, very importantly, when sensitive info is being asked you through texts, CONFIRM VERBALLY by CALLING back. Also, when you're being texted by friends or family to meet them somewhere, be sure to CALL back to confirm that the message came from them. If you don't reach them, be very careful about going places to meet "family and friends" who text you.

Until next time, HB

Monday, September 10, 2007

I Love Clean Babies!!!

“People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.”

Until next time, rub-a-dub-dub, HB

Friday, September 7, 2007

Whoa, Nellie!!!

The boys have recently discovered and befriended the neighbor's dog, Nellie. She is a beautiful, kid-friendly golden retriever. She roams her backyard with such a welcoming nature that the boys can't help themselves to a visit when we venture to play in the front yard. Her tail wags with such happiness every time the boys go over to visit. And I imagine if the boys were able, they too, would be wagging their tails to express the same excitement and happiness as their beloved neighbor dog.

"Children and dogs are as necessary to the welfare of the country as Wall Street and the railroads.”~Harry S Truman

Until next time, their tails wait with anticipation of the next visit, HB

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Victims of the Heat

This past Spring, JB and I spent a day and 1/2 redoing our front yard flowerbeds. We dug up and removed the shrubs that weren't growing and planted variegated ivy to grow as ground cover. We kept the hosta that we had already planted last year.

Well, due to the oppressive heat wave we had in August, some of the new plants fell victim to the heat.

This was once pretty variegated green ivy. As you can see, it is now variegated with the brown colors of death. I don't think there is any reviving it.

This was once hosta which is supposed to be a pretty hardy plant. Well, now it is pretty dead. It still has a few green leaves but they have continually grown brown.
I guess just watering them wasn't enough. They are, however, planted in direct sunlight which caused 5th degree fatal burns. I will probably dig them up and place potted plants that love direct sunlight and can endure the oppressive heat that comes with it.
Until next time, HB

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

House Wine of the South

This is an article that I read through MSN back in August. I did edit the article a little to make it shorter and to remove an inappropriate paragraph. I know it may still be a little long for some readers but I think you will find entertaining, validating and worth your time. I think it may be an article we can all relate to in one way or another. When JB and I went on our honeymoon to New Hampshire, we learned early that there is no sweet tea up there. When the chef at the Inn we were staying found out that we were from the South, he humbly attempted to have sweet tea for us at the dinner table. His humble attempt was so appreciated but I have to wasn't the real thing. Sweet tea is definitely a tradition and necessity that the South still proclaims.

I Wish I Lived in a Land of Lipton …
What makes Southern sweet tea so special?
By Jeffrey Klineman Posted Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2007, at 1:06 PM ET

Drinking sweet tea is one of the oldest and most exceptional Southern traditions. As Dolly Parton's character in Steel Magnolias puts it, it's the "house wine of the South"—a clear, orange-to-red tinted tea brewed from six or seven Lipton or
Luzianne tea bags, poured hot onto a cup or more of sugar or a pool of simple syrup, and then diluted into a gallon pitcher in the fridge. It's served over a mound of ice in a huge glass—so cold that you can watch your napkin drown in a puddle of condensation.

By "sweet tea," we mean "sweet." As one food technologist told me, some of the sweetest glasses can hit 22
Brix of sugar. That means that 22 percent of the liquid consists of dissolved sugar solids, or, to put it in more meaningful terms: close to twice what you'd find in a can of Coke. Still, there's a balance to the flavor—the tea is brewed long and strong, so it gets an astringency that can only be countered by lots of the sweet stuff.

Southerners, of course, have a taste for sugar that is demonstrably stronger than what you find up North. We like our pecan pie and pralines sweet enough to make the dentist cringe. All of the major soda companies—the Coca-Cola Co., PepsiCo, Dr Pepper—started in the South. Bourbon, that sweetest of whiskies, is from Kentucky. A mint julep, that classic Southern cocktail, is basically a whiskey'd up sweet tea, with mint, ice, simple syrup, and booze.

Sugar worship might account for much of sweet tea's popularity, but I think its appeal lies in the ice. Southerners seem to have a particular fascination with ice. This may stem, most obviously, from the fact that the Southern climate is often steamier than a Rat Pack

As an April Fools' Day prank in 2003, Georgia State Rep. John Noel introduced a bill that would have made it a misdemeanor for a restaurant owner not to include sweet tea on the menu. Most Southerners can easily tell the difference between fresh sweet tea and the stuff from concentrate—and unless their sugar jones is too strong that day, chances are they'll send the latter back.

It's a refreshing combination of sweet and cold, sure, but how does something that's simply tasty become the unofficial beverage for an entire region? Well, there's this: The South reveres its traditions, and sweet tea is one of them.

I may live in Massachusetts now, but I still consider myself Southern at heart. In the fall, I ask the bartender to let me watch the Bulldogs game. In the spring, I feel a potentially suicidal need to stop wearing a coat. And in the summer, I still look for sweet tea. Even on the rare occasion I can find someplace that has it on the menu, it's often slightly off. Maybe it isn't sweet enough. Maybe it's the lack of free refills. Whatever it is, it chills me.

Jeffrey Klineman is a freelance writer in Cambridge, Mass. His work has appeared in Boston magazine, George, Commonwealth, Razor, Self, and Penthouse.

Monday, September 3, 2007

Dog Pack Attacks Gator In Florida

Some of you may have already seen this through email but I thought I would blog it:

"At times nature can be cruel, but there is also a raw beauty, and even a certain justice manifested within that cruelty.The alligator, one of the oldest and ultimate predators, normally considered the "apex predator", can still fall victim to implemented 'team work' strategy, made possible due to the tight knit social structure and "survival of the pack mentality" bred into the canines.See the remarkable photograph below courtesy of Nature Magazine. Note that the Alpha dog has a muzzle hold on the gator preventing it from breathing, while another dog has a hold on the tail to keep it from thrashing. The third dog attacks the soft underbelly of the gator."

Not for the squeamish, picture below......................