Things my big sister taught me.

Things my big sister taught me.

Well, I have to say that I can’t imagine my life without my big sister.  I have learned so many valuable lessons over the years from her.  Now that I am 40 she still continues to teach me new things.  Three new things I recently learned:

1.  People love getting mail!  She mails everything.  Since she moved to Arkansas, she has mailed me books, banners and most recently Halloween costumes. The fact is that she would have mailed these things to me if she still lived in Fenton (35 minutes away).  I don’t know what it is.  There is just something she loves about it.  She likes writing and stationery and has always had an appreciation for proper etiquette.  She particularly loves sending unexpected treats.  Just yesterday my girls received homemade Halloween cards with sticker sheets inside.  You would have thought they won the lottery.  They ran in from school and these beautiful pieces of mail, addressed personally to each of them sat right by their afternoon snack.  They tore into them and were thrilled to have a hand written message from their Aunt Kim.  So lesson learned. . . receiving mail truly can make a person’s day!


2.  It’s good to feed your dog a raw food diet.  This one I admit I was a bit skeptical about.  However, she is a smart girl who does her research, so I listened.  She has been telling me for years how horrible it is to feed your dog store bought dog food.  She buys whole chickens and feeds them to her dog RAW 😦 .  Anyway, the other night I was making chicken tortilla soup.  To make it easier on myself I bought a rotisserie chicken.  As my dog stood diligently at my side, I decided to give this chicken diet a try.  I threw him a chicken leg.  Now, she told me that they eat the bones and all . . . and he did!  He loved it!  In fact he loved it so much I saved the other one for the next day.  My husband was really concerned when he saw our little dog going to town on this chicken leg.  “Is he really supposed to eat the bones?”

“Yep,” I replied, “Kim said the whole thing.”

I was pretty proud of myself, and when I called my sister a few days later I told her how I was getting on the raw food bandwagon.  She yelled through the phone, “What?  You gave him cooked chicken bones?”

“Yes, you said I could give him the bones.”

“I said RAW chicken bones!  You can’t feed a dog cooked chicken bones!!!  They splinter and could tear his internal organs.”

“Oh.  He seems okay to me though.”

A couple hours later I received a text from my sister that said, “I’m worried about Bogey.  You sure he’s okay?”

What’s the lesson here?  While a raw food diet may be good for your dog, the real lesson learned here is SMALL words matter too.  RAW really was the key!

3.  How to lock down your itunes account so your kids can’t buy things without your permission.  A few weeks ago I posted on facebook that I was a bit surprised when I got my itunes receipt via e-mail and there was a $1.99 charge for a game called “Pou.”  When I asked my kids about it, they explained that it was a game where you have to take care of a piece of poop.  Yes, apparently nothing is free these days.  Anyway my sister attended a PTO meeting the other night and called me on the way home.  During the meeting she had learned that there is a way to lock your child’s iphone/ipod so that they are unable to make purchases.  She quickly walked me through the steps.  The irony in this is that yesterday my sister received her i-tunes receipt and it had over $60 worth of charges that her daughter had made.  Lesson learned. . . don’t laugh at me for paying $2 for shit when you just spent $60 on your own pile.

It’s good to have a sister to teach you these things!

Love you, Sis!

Oh and on a side note.  I sent this entry to my sister to edit for me before I posted.  Usually she calls me up, and walks me through the edits explaining why the change is needed.  This time she called me, and as I went to my computer to make changes she said “Forget it!  I’ve explained the comma rules to you a million times and you still don’t get it.  I’ll make the changes myself and send you the finished copy.”  Lesson learned….Not paying attention can pay off!  BTW – I threw some extra commas in this last paragraph for good measure. 


Storing Scarves


I usually keep my scares as neatly folded as possible because I don’t like them to be all wrinkly when I wear them. But my collection is growing (again–after purging the ones I wore as a restaurant hostess circa 1991). And they keep sliding off their shelf.

How about this? I like it because it reminds me of the way they display them in stores. But — two issues — they take up a lot of precious hanging space, and they will be wrinkled where they’re “tied” onto the rod. Hmmm. . . back to the drawing board. Anyone got the perfect solution?


A forgotten household task . . .


I don’t keep a “to be ironed pile” like my mother did. In fact, I rarely iron anymore. I grab things out of the dryer or sometimes even the washer and hang them up in hopes of avoiding wrinkles. Then I pull out the ironing board to touch things up right before I wear them. And on busy mornings you go for something that doesn’t need ironing, right?

Since starting my burlap obsession, I’ve had the ironing board up and given it a workout. Finally perfected the pennant technique to include ironing Wonder Under between two pieces for sturdiness and to avoid fraying edges. Then I iron the top down into a half-inch fold, giving a nicer place to glue the twine than across the front of the pennant.

All of this “fun with burlap” has left my ironing board and my iron a mess. My Dear One, who actually likes ironing, is the one who purchased both of these. He’s pretty meticulous about his clothes and loves that Rowenta Professional iron (even bought his mother one!).

Thought I’d press a few things for my girls and myself this rainy Saturday morning but have to Google “how to clean an iron” first. And then consider going to Target for a second ironing board cover; maybe I can switch them out for clothes vs. burlap?

The School Equestrian Team

DSC_0076 DSC_0217My youngest daughter is obsessed with horses. This may or may not be my fault. For the record, I have been afraid of horses since one bit me at Girl Scout camp in the sixth grade.

However, I was determined never to transfer my fears to my children, so I signed them up for horseback riding lessons when they were little. The older one moved on to dance, musical theater, student council, and boys. The younger one still thinks of nothing but horses.

So I hang out at smelly barns, reading my books and shooing flies away. In St. Louis we drove out into the country where she leased a sweet horse named Dimples. She’d trudge into hip high grass to fetch the horse, pick her muddy hooves out with a scary looking thing, spray her with fly spray, saddle up, and ride off into the distance, grinning with joy.  Easy peasy.

Big tears when we moved to Arkansas last year, but I told her that there were bound to be lots of horses just like Dimples.  Hmmm. . .nope. The girls here ride English, which means that they sport $300 helmets on their heads, $300 boots on their feet, and fancy threads in between. They still pick the hooves clean, but then they trot those ponies around a ring, leaping over fences with posture I can only dream of. It would be kind of cute if I weren’t writing the checks and biting my nails in the grandstand.

Fast forward a year, and C has joined an Interscholastic Equestrian Association riding team made up of middle and high school girls who practice together and then go to shows to challenge themselves to ride horses other than their own, using tack other than their own. That might not sound like a big deal, but in the usual shows they ride horses they know and are basically showing what the horse can do. In these team shows, they show what they can do as riders in completely unfamiliar circumstances. Not only do they draw horses from a hat, their coach has to choose which of them will place before the show, and they only earn points for the ones that she chooses correctly! It’s crazy challenging! But, it turns out, super fun, too. Despite the cold, windy day, I enjoyed seeing these athletes and horses work together. And the comaraderie! The girls helped each other get up to speed on which horse tends to (oh, how would I know?) act which way, and they acted as grooms for each other, and just generally supported one another in ways you wouldn’t see at a show where they are competitors. It was really neat to see horseback riding as a team sport.

When I was in high school, we were trying to convince the Powers That Be that cheerleading and dance team deserved to earn varsity letters. Now I’d like to see my daughter earn one in the IEA! Go Team!

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