Tuesday, September 30, 2008

School Pictures 2008

The girls class pictures came back last week. I mailed some out to family. I always end up with tons of wallets left over even though I buy the minimum. Paula looks so much more mature to me in this photo than she does on daily basis. I often look at them and try to envision what they'll look like in their adulthood.

Shawna - Kindergarten

Paula - 2nd Grade

Monday, September 29, 2008

Added and Subtracted Wheels

This was a big weekend for wheels. First off, Shawna learned to ride her bike without training wheels! She's 5.5 yrs old and since we live on top of a hill she doesn't get too much practice biking. Paula was the same way and only ditched the training wheels at age 6 during a camping trip. Todd took the girls down to the nearby school. Paula and her friend were teasing Shawna about her training wheels so Shawna insisted Todd remove them. She took to it immediately.

My Big Girl

In addition, the girls got to learn how to skateboard. Todd was a huge skateboarder as a kid. In fact, he has the same skateboard now as he did in high school. The girls took turns playing on it. Todd would push them up our driveway then they'd ride the hill down towards the house on their own. They also practices turning it around.

Behind Paula to the right you can see how the driveway goes up. Todd pushed them to the sidewalk, then they'd ride down into the garage.

We have carpeting in our garage so the girls practiced in there before venturing out to the concrete.

Fun Fun Fun

Friday, September 26, 2008

Box Tops

If you have children, you know about box tops. Before kids I didn't understand the whole box top concept. I'd get emails from friends telling me to save cereal box tops. I didn't but just the fact that we were supposed to baffled me.
Box Tops are little pink colored squares on certain products that when you turn them in for your school, the school earns 10 cents for each one. Sometimes products have bonus box tops. I get REALLY excited with those. They're on zip lock bags, cereal, yogurt, nighttime pull-ups, crackers and many other products. Some schools earn upwards to $20K a year! That's not the norm and those schools are usually in rural towns where the entire town participants.

At our school the money has been used for the student council. It's their one and only fundraiser. My goal is to use it for them, and the classrooms. I've volunteered to be the new box top coordinator. (thank you for the applause) Currently the 1st grade teacher (who I ADORE) is their leader, but I can get parent hours for doing this AND I'm motivated AND you know she'd rather not be bothered. LOL

So, onward to my newest mission. Bring on the box tops.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Where did you come from?

Paula, who is in 2nd grade, has to do an oral report based on her ancestry. When did her ancestors come to America? Well, heck if I knew! Not only that but she has to bring something in, or wear clothing, that depicts her ancestors and say what traditions do we continue to do today.
She had to pick one parent to interview. She picked me. It's probably a good thing since I know Todd has no clue about even his own grandparents and I'm not sure his parents would be all that helpful as their memory is fading fast.

So I called my mom. Luckily when my brother was in 4th grade he had to do a family tree and she kept the info her mom gaveher. She had my dad email me the info. Check us out! Her side has been here since the mid 1800's. Now, this is just my moms side of the family. The Italian's and Irish. (bad combination if you know any...very feisty together!) I also have to say that I LOVE having a grandpa with the name Romeo. He's past away now but how much more Italian can you get?! There is actually a living Romeo DeMartini. My 2nd cousin who they call Romi (rome-ee). I'm going to focus on the Italian side of things for her report. She's not supposed to bring in food but I'll find her something else that's Italian for show and tell.

My Mom's side of the family (Italian/Irish)
Paula's great, great, great grandparents
Charles Henry Tilton, born at Meredith, N.H. July 16, 1842
Anna Frances Simon Tilton, born in Alsace-Lorraine, April 15, 1848

William Simpson, born in Ireland
Brigid Fallon Simpson, born in Ireland

Pietro Gombia, born in Carrara, Italy, Nov. 10, 1850
Louisa Cassasa Gombia, born in New York, Dec. 24, 1861

Joseph DeMartini, born in Genoa, Italy
Celestine Arata DeMartini, born in Genoa, Italy

Paula's great, great grandparents
Frederick Albert Tilton, born in San Francisco, July 12, 1879
Agnes Simpson Tilton, born in San Francisco, Dec. 23, 1880

Romeo Anthony DeMartini, born in San Francisco, Sept. 18, 1880
Charlotte Gombia DeMartini, born in San Francisco, Oct. 13, 1884

Paula's great grandparents
Romeo Peter DeMartini, born in San Francisco, Aug. 4, 1906
Frances Tilton DeMartini, born in San Francisco, Oct. 17, 1907

Paula's grandparents
Robert Edward Coker, born in Chicago, Ill. May 2, 1939
Joan Frances DeMartini (Coker), born in Sacramento Ca,, May 24, 1943

My dads side of the family (Scottish/English)
I actually have a ton of info on my dads side of the family but this below tidbit wasn't in the genealogy book my grandmother put together. Below isn't as pretty and laid out as the above.

Paula's Great, great great grandfather
Last name Ritchie, sailed from Scotland by way of Ireland in 1773. He landed in Barnwell, SC and was in the War of 1783. He ended up in Mississippi where he met and married. He had something like 10 kids. No lie.

Every other grandparent was born in Mississippi.
This side of the family was very prolific. Everyone had like 8-10 kids. What's odd is my dad is an only child.

I may edit this to update the names and dates from my book which is at home. I'm at work typing this out.

Monday, September 22, 2008


I can't think of anything to write so I'm going to show you my new glasses. Aren't they sassy! They're transitional, which means the lenses go from light to dark in the sun. You non-glasses wearing people may not have known that and I didn't want you having to leave, Google the dictionary and then come back and say duh?!

I took this picture at home yesterday after I'd been in the sun. You can see how they're a bit darker in the lens area. This goes away after a few minutes.

I took this picture on Friday at work. The sides of the frames are pink with lots of bling. (totally fake bling btw). And because I purposely bought these to match my pink stuff today at work I AM wearing a pink blouse and black pants. I'm totally accessorized. Yeah baby!

You know you want them too.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Turning Purple

Paula informed me this morning that she can turn her face purple by holding her breath. Yikes! She does it at school apparently. I asked her if anyone taught her this or told her about it. She said no. I explained how it's unsafe and she can pass out and to NEVER hold her breath. EVER.


Friday, September 12, 2008

A little W(h)ine

I'm around. Nothing exciting to report. I'd complain but what's the point? Oh hell, it feels better to complain!

I''ve gained a ton of weight lately. I'm out of control. I'm fat! If I'm hungry I eat. A LOT. I don't know why I'm doing this since for a long time now I've been really good with my eating. I HAVE GOT to get back down to a happy size because when a woman does not fit into her clothes she (and no one else) is happy.

My minivan is freaking out. The bloody break isn't talking to the gear shift alerting it that I'm hitting the break and so therefore it should let me take it out of park and into another gear. So I sit there struggling, pushing and re-pushing the stupid break while trying to get into reverse.

At the eye doctors yesterday (which went fine, thanks for asking) I received a call from the school saying Paula was in the office crying and complaining of stomach cramps. I needed to come get her. I was 30 minutes away from her. They said they'd have her lie (or is it lay?) on a cot until I got there. I called Dina who was thankfully at home. She pinched hit for me and picked up Paula. I was at the house waiting. By then Paula was fine but did have a couple #2's (let's not go there). Today she was back in school.

At work we now have to do cash forecasting every week which I HATE. It's stupid. In the Dept I work in cash received is irrelevant to our goal. I've been here 9 years and we've never had to do this until P.M.S (new manager) started on Monday. I'm irritated. Nuff said.

Did I mention I'm fat?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


My dog is pissing me off. Seriously. How difficult is it to walk a few more feet to the dog door to piss and poo OUTSIDE? Today she pee'd and poo'd TWICE downstairs. TWICE people! That totals 4 messes. She's on my last nerve. And it doesn't help that I go around calling her Piece of Shit Dog in front of the girls as I'm cleaning up the messes. Like I even have time in the mornings to clean up dog crap! I considered leaving it for Todd (because I'm evil) but I know better than to do that. He loves animals, and especially dogs, but he didn't want another responsibility added to his plate like cleaning up the dog crap before mowing the lawn. Well, that isn't really a problem since she takes her craps indoors! He and Rosie share a love/hate relationship. Once in awhile you'll catch Todd given her tons of love.

She knows when she's done wrong, don't think she doesn't. She looks at me and crouches down looking pathetic. If I had more time I'd scoop her up, carry her back downstairs (because she's hiding upstairs) shove her nose in it and toss her out back. But generally I don't have time for that on school days so she gets away with it. Little Shit.

Look how innocent she looks with Shawna. It's all an act I tell you.
Yes, that's my leg.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Killer Hair

Yesterday on the way to school I killed a squirrel. He apparently wanted to commit suicide because he ran out right in front of me so fast there was no chance for me to stop or swerve. I heard him under my tire. Thankfully the girls didn't know what happened. When I looked in my rear view mirror his little lifeless body was laying in the street. So sad. I've had many near misses in my life with rodents who insist on killing themselves in my presence. This is the first time, to my knowledge, that one has succeeded.

My girls have picture day today at school. I was supposed to go meet a customer in the Los Angeles area today but I told my manager a couple weeks ago that today is picture day! No way was I going to let Todd, who couldn't really be home anyway, fix their hair. Scary! Even if my neighbor & friend Dina could stay with us to get them off to school, she doesn't do hair. She's the male version in her lesbian relationship. She does not do hair. She showers and shakes her curls. Done. So I had to miss going on a business trip so that I could get my girls to school looking decent for what will be in the school yearbook and on my mantel.

I'm in the process of booking another December camping trip with friends. We've ditched the Peppers. Our friends (not the Peppers) only want to hang with us. We're trying to decide if we go to Pacifia to a full-hookup RV park that is a glorified parking lot, or head to a KOA, somewhere more expensive and further away. I'm voting for the KOA. Plus we have a family who borrows our tent. Their "lodgers". You can rent Kabins at KOA's which would mean they can come too. I'll continue working on this today.

Oh! And the woman I met in the parking lot yesterday is in fact my new director. So far so good but we've nick named her PMS just in case. Her initials are P.M.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Groceries and Grandparents Day

Today I tried out Safeway's grocery shopping online. First time orders get free delivery. Normally Todd shops after work on Thursday's but if this goes well he won't have to do it. I only bought items that were Buy one, Get one Free, and/or Club Card savings items. I'll let you know how it goes. They do put in a blip that my items might not be available so I checked No Exchanges. We have to wait for them from 7-9pm Thursday night. I love getting deliveries and now I get food!

Speaking of deliveries, this Sunday is Grandparents Day. It's not a Hallmark holiday like most of you might think. A lady who worked in a senior center eons ago wanted our grandparents to be honored so she got Pres. Carter to sign this holiday into existance.

I ordered my parents, Todd's parents and my 92 year old Grandma flowers to be delivered to them on Saturday. (No deliveries on Sunday apparently). For once I'm ahead of the game. Score!

Tonight is back to school night at my girls' school. I'll go alone so Todd can watch our kiddos. Normally we'd ask the Peppers to watch them but after the biting incident I'm laying low with them. In fact, I need to remember to tell Todd not to invite them over Friday night like he normally. I think a break is in order.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Don't Bite

This Labor Day weekend we were at Pinecrest Lake with a bunch of families. There were 51 of us total. There are no hook-ups (dry camping) but there was the occasional water faucet here and there for convenience of washing dishes for the tent campers.

Todd is now known as GTO. Gadget Todd Obsessed. He brought out his night vision goggles which of course everyone thinks is just so awesome. He did movie night on Saturday and Sunday with the projector and large screen (white shower curtain). We watched Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure on Saturday. It’s just as hilarious 10+ years later and many of the group hadn’t ever seen it. Saturday was Liar Liar with Jim Carey. The lake has an amphitheater that held movies for $6.00/per person each night but my family opted out of that cost expenditure. They had newer movies like Wall-E and Get Smart.

We spent each day down at the beach. There was only 1 section that allowed dogs and many of the families we were with had dogs. We left our Rosie Shmosie with my neighbors at home. The water was cold but shallow near shore so the kids had a blast. We did picnics for lunch which worked out great.

Pinecrest is very DUSTY. My kids were filthy each day. Luckily Shawna wanted to wear the same clothes most of the time so I had limited laundry there but overall my laundry room is packed. My heels are so nasty that I took a scraper to them this morning after my shower. The dirt was stuck in the dry crevices of my heels. TMI

At night the temperature dropped down to 45 degrees one night and daytime was in the mid 80’s. My kids rode scooters & bikes on the roads around the campgrounds with the other children who were with us. Paula met an older lady camping near us with her dog Button who was a 9 year old tiny poodle. So cute. Paula and Shawna were often found over there by her camper petting and getting kisses from Button. Barbara, the woman, reminded me of Todd’s mom a bit. Facial features mostly.

On Sunday almost 50 of us set out at different times to hike the 4 miles around the lake. It’s not paved and has some crazy spots that were tough to maneuver but we all made it. Shawna only needed to be carried on Todd’s shoulders a few times for very short time frames. Paula did great and often lead our pack. I was so proud of them for completing the long tough hike.

The big drama of the weekend was between my Shawna and her little best friend Tyler. The Peppers (her family) are one of our closest friends. Some of you know that I have issues with her and my husbands close relationship but none of that came up this weekend.
The girls all play together so often they often act as siblings how they fight. A few girls were in our trailer hanging out before the night time movie started. Based on my interviews with all involved, Paula and one other girl were bossing Shawna. Shawna started getting angry and tackled Paula in front of the refrigerator. Tyler jumped in to break it up and Shawna bit her hard on the forearm. Todd ran to get her parents and I came up as they were collecting their daughter, who was clearly irritated with us. Shawna got a butt swat by me, and was put in time out on the couch missing the entire movie. I stayed with her where she cried for awhile. She didn't understand why she couldn't watch the movie even though she said sorry. Eventually she fell asleep on the couch.

I left the trailer to find out from everyone involved what had happened. When I found Tyler walking with her dad I leaned down and asked her what happened. Pepper replied with “It doesn’t matter what happened. Shawna shouldn’t bite” Then he went on to say how my girls are always hitting, etc. So I spoke back that just that afternoon I watched Tyler, who for now apparent reason, pinch Shawna, who then responded with pulling Tyler’s hair. He said she learns it from my girls. Well, if that’s so (I’m thinking) quit bringing her over every damn weekend. We all walked off.

Later that night I went over to their campfire and hung out. I asked Susan how Tyler’s arm was doing. She gave me a face that indicated Tyler was okay and I could tell Susan was still very upset by what happened. I wasn’t dropping this. There was a dad of twin 10 year old girls there too who kind of helped my argument that the girls play so much together that they act like siblings so it can get rough. I reminded Susan how just last weekend she had to put Tyler in a time out at my house for pushing or hitting Paula. She replied with, But Sandra, biting is so bad.
I totally agreed, but also asked when has Shawna ever done that before?
Her: “Well, never”.
Me: Exactly, so can we give her a break?”
She let it die and so did I.

Our girls were playing together again the next morning.

I was supposed to be going to Squaw Valley in Lake Tahoe this weekend with a friend and her friends, but her friends all cancelled so she and I decided to postpone to another time.
Just as well. I need a weekend to catch up on all my laundry!