Archive for March, 2009

I realized yesterday that I have a serious pet peeve that I haven’t given much thought to in the past.

Yesterday, I visited the restroom at my work. After washing my hands, I reached to get a paper towel and it was the last paper towel on the roll. You know, the one that seems to be glued to the tube. On the counter were two unopened paper towel rolls. I used the one that was glued to the tube, opened up a new roll, and placed the roll on the paper towel holder. It wasn’t that difficult.

I have had this same exact thing happen with the toilet paper at work. Someone was kind enough to leave just enough toilet paper on the roll to cover the tube. Even my kids will go ahead and use that toilet paper and just leave the empty roll, which is better than someone leaving just a little on the tube to justify not having to reach under the sink and grab another roll.

People that leave one little piece of paper on the paper towel roll or the toilet paper roll to get out of replacing them with a fresh new one for the next person really get on my nerves. I would rather have a completely empty paper towel roll or toilet paper roll. I don’t know about you, but that last piece of toilet paper or paper towel isn’t enough.

Now, I wonder how many of those people that leave that last piece of paper on the roll use less paper themselves just so they can have just enough to leave on the roll?


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Many of my friends and family know that I have had a difficult time getting Jacob to bring up his grades at school. This has been a problem during his 7th grade year and it continued on into the 8th grade.

It is not that Jacob can’t do the work. He is very intelligent.

The problem is that he doesn’t do the work.

So, being at the end of my rope and up to my eyeballs with frustration, I created a minor stink at the school around the time that the first progress report of the last nine weeks. It really frustrated me that it was his homework grade that was bringing down his overall grades. The teacher’s have websites that are updated sporadically and I had given every one of his teacher’s (as well as the teacher’s in 7th grade) my contact information if Jacob did not do what he was supposed to do for his classes. You can imagine how I felt when I discovered, through a phone call that I made to the school, that Jacob had 7 zero’s in nearly 3 weeks in one of his classes at school. All of these zero’s were homework grades.

I will spare you the details of how I dealt with the situation, but I did deal with it because I had had enough of this school allowing my child to fail. If my child was going to fail, it was not going to be because I allowed it to happen.

I decided that it was up to me to make sure that my child learned what he was supposed to and if that meant making a few teachers mad, then so be it. Honestly, I felt that if they were allowing my child to fail even though he was an honor roll student before arriving at this school, then they weren’t doing their job. My child’s education is more important to me than any teacher that is passively sitting by allowing him to fail.

My sister-in-law decided to help. She came over and helped him with his homework and study. I emailed teachers. I stayed in constant contact with the teachers. Since he didn’t want me to create any other problems at the school and he figured out that I was serious about getting him to do his work, then he started trying to bring his grades up.

My sister-in-law and Jacob created and agreed upon a contract containing goals. They were reasonable goals and Jacob signed the contract saying that he would do what was required of him to reach those goals.

And he did.

He brought home his report card yesterday. He passed every class. He was extremely proud of himself. I was proud of him. My sister-in-law was proud of him. He worked hard the last few weeks of the nine weeks and he discovered that hard work does pay. Jacob even told his father on the phone last night that for the first time since he started going to that school in the 7th grade, he was not grounded.

I have to make sure that he has enough incentive to keep doing well in school. Our family, along with my brother-in-law and sister-in-law, will be going bowling soon. Jacob told my sister-in-law that he wanted go bowling if he reached the goals that they agreed upon.

Also, Josh and I decided to celebrate his success by taking the family out to eat at the restaurant of Jacob’s choosing. I am sure Jacob will choose a really nice steakhouse–and it will be worth every penny. 😉

Have a Blessed Day!

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You don’t know how much you take your kitchen sink for granted until you can’t use it.

The other day I received a phone call from my husband. I didn’t get to the call in time so I had to call him right back.

The first thing he said when he answered the phone was that he couldn’t win from losing. This was not a good sign. I braced myself and asked “What’s wrong, now?” (Notice the ‘now’…there is always something wrong with the house.)

Jacob was washing dishes and noticed this strange sound every time he would turn on the water, but he didn’t try to figure out what the noise was because he just wanted to get the dishes done so he could go back and play his PlayStation 2. Josh walked through the kitchen and noticed the sound. My husband wasn’t as quick to dismiss the sound like Jacob, so he investigated to see where the noise was coming from. He opened the cabinet and the pipes under the sink was leaking.

It was about 4:15pm and the hardware store closes at 5pm so he had to go get the supplies to fix the sink. He gets back and fixes the sink.

Of course, it isn’t that simple.

There is another leak, but now it is after 5pm. So, he had to wait until the store opened up again.

Yesterday afternoon, he was able to fix the sink and now we are able to use the sink.

By the way, Jacob has been told that if he is doing anything and he hears a noise that is weird, not to ignore the noise.

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The kids are on Spring Break. There is a lot of nothing going on in the house, except for some PlayStation playing, Internet surfing, and TV watching. For some reason, they believe that they are on vacation from chores when they are on Spring Break. They do what they are supposed to with a little bit lot of reminding from me, but I don’t complain too much. After all, they are kids and you are only a kid for a short while. Except for those people with brains that never catch up with their body.


Emily is really getting into the show, Jon and Kate Plus Eight. She tries to tell me about the show when I get home in the afternoon.

So far, I have gathered this from the show–from Emily’s opinions.

Jon is really easy going and does whatever Kate wants.

Kate yells a lot and has to have a lot of help because she has a hard time controlling all those kids.

There is always someone crying.

Kate is always tired.

Evidently, we could have our own show because it is just as chaotic in our house as it is in theirs even though we have only four kids and not eight.

I handle things better than Kate. (No offense Kate.)

Jon is calm and has Daddy and kid time while on some trip somewhere.

Evidently, Kate and a friend took the kids to some “chocolate place” and she is crazy, because Emily said that I would never dare take them anywhere like that. Apparently, I know better. (Again, no offense Kate.)

Kate would never make it working in a day care, because Emily said I watched more than eight kids with no problem.

Since, I have only heard bits and pieces of the show, I can’t really comment from experience but only on Emily’s perception of the show.

First of all, I think that if Kate is able to handle all eight children all day, every day, without going insane, then I think that she is doing great. Especially, since they are so young. My children are spread out and not even close to the same age, so I have to deal with 4 children that are all in different stages in their lives.

Second, I suspect that it is just easier for Jon to go with the flow than to argue. From what I gather though, he works hard and does all he can to support his family. Also, I think it is great that he tries to make time for every child. That doesn’t always happen even when a family only has a couple of children.

Third, I am glad that they decided to put their story on TV. It is great entertainment and I think that it helps Emily because she relates to the show–even though we only have four children. Being the only girl, Emily often feels like she is misunderstood and out of the loop. I do what I can to help her not feel that way and let her know that she is an important part of our family.

Finally, Emily said that she is glad that I am her mom. If watching the show allows her to appreciate the family she has, then I will gladly let her watch the show.  Besides, I like hearing Emily’s observations about their family.

Maybe one day I will get around to actually watching a full episode.

Have a Blessed Day!

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I use charts, lists, and a huge calendar to keep my family organized–or at least try to, anyway. I felt like it was a losing battle. I have to constantly remind my kids to check their lists. I have to remind them to actually do the stuff on their list. I don’t always get to everything on my list because life gets in the way. Life has a funny way of doing that sometimes. 

My mother (who is my biggest critic) came over Friday morning. She commented on how clean my house was and asked if I had spent the night before cleaning. I told her that I had not and I looked around my kitchen. I realized that my house was clean. It was clean without me having to spend hours cleaning.

All this time that I thought I was fighting a losing battle, I had actually won it.

Sometimes, it just takes stepping back and seeing your situation through the eyes of others to see the real picture. I am sure this applies to more than just my clean house. Thanks Mom!

Have a Blessed Day!

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It is a sad day at my house when I am the only one that has it all together.

Let me explain. I am what some might call scatterbrained. I call myself that, too. I am forgetful and often to the point that someone might even think that I didn’t care about whatever it was that I was supposed to remember, but really and truly my mind is somewhere else–Sonya’s own little world. Sonya’s World also makes me run late quite often, too. I even forget to leave work when I am supposed to and then I run late getting home. Sad, huh?

lose misplace items all the time: keys, check card, makeup bag, purse, cell phone, occasionally my car in Walmart parking lot, and other things. I have developed my own system for dealing with my habit of misplacing stuff, just because my mind is on something else at the time.

My keys: I always place them in the same place every day as I walk into my home. It is a cute little fish dish.

My Purse: I drop it into the same spot every day.

My Makeup bag is a little harder to keep up with. It stays in the same spot, but sometimes I don’t have time to put on makeup before I leave the house so I take it with me and then I forget that it is in the car until the next morning when I am ready to put on my makeup. It is a vicious cycle.

I always park in the area of the parking lot at Walmart. It just makes it easier to find that way.

I will put my cell phone down anywhere. I find it all over the house. I have even had to call it before so that I can hear it ring, but then half the time I realize that it is on vibrate. A quarter of the time, I have left the thing in the car. I will only realize this after calling it 5 times, realizing it must be on vibrate, and I have torn the house apart searching for it.

Knowing how I am, I have been determined to get organized. I have lists everywhere. Lists that I have forgotten about. I have lists for the kids. I have a huge desk calendar at work and at home with everything listed on it. I don’t know how much more I can do.

The other day, I was on my way home. I had just picked up baby Samuel from the sitter. It was 5pm. Jacob had a Chiropractor appointment at 5:15pm. I called Josh.

Me: Hey, I just picked up Samuel. I am on  my way. Tell Jacob to be ready when I get there.

Josh: Oh, Shoot.

Me: (I could tell this wasn’t going to be good.) What?

Josh: Jacob went to hit balls with Stanley. (Stanley was Jacob’s baseball coach last year and Jacob is really good friends with Stanley’s son.)

Me: Well, do you know where they are?

Josh: No, but he took the cell with him. (The cell that Jacob’s father bought him…not me.)

Me: OK. Well, I will be there in a minute. You know, I have it written on The Calendar.

Josh: I don’t look at The Calendar.

UGH! Can you feel my frustration? I thought that my husband was the one that had it all together. He is the neat freak in the family. I just assumed that neat freaks would be great at organizational stuff. Perhaps, I am wrong…or it is just him. Anyway, for me to be the one that has it all together in the family is sort of comical really. Since when is the most scatterbrained person in the family the one that seems to know what is going on and when it is happening. It all comes down to determination and constant vigilance on my part to have a routine for everything. Repetition is the key for me.

The Calendar is our command station. It is where I communicate to my family, as well as telling them, that this is what is on the agenda for our family. The Calendar and our lists are a way to remain organized. Having and maintaining a routine is crucial for my family. Apparently, I need to make some revisions to their lists.  

I need to add “Look at The Calendar” to my family’s lists–either that or stick a post-it note on their foreheads.

By the way, we did make it to Jacob’s appointment–barely.

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I would think that traditions are important to a lot of people, especially around the holidays. Some traditions are complex while others are simple. Some involve religious beliefs while others do not. Who knows, you may have a tradition that you don’t even think of as a tradition.

I was thinking about the traditions in my own family. We have traditions such as doing crafts at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Even something as simple as having my Grandmother’s Chicken and Dumplings at every holiday could be viewed as a tradition.

I think about how my mother and I would go out to eat, then to the movies every Saturday when I was a teenager. That was sort of our mother and daughter time. Even now, I still go shopping (most of the time it is to Sam’s or the grocery store) with my mom on most Saturday’s. We don’t get to the movies much anymore, but I feel like we have continued the tradition of spending time together on Saturday’s.

Now that I have my own children, I am thinking about traditions that I celebrate with them. Sadly, I can’t think of anything really significant that we could call a “tradition” other than attending church, but I don’t know if this qualifies as a real tradition. I think that my family gets so caught up with life that we forget to stop every now and then and enjoy being together as a family.

So, I need some inspiration! I want to hear about your family traditions.   🙂

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