Showing posts from February, 2009

Darn this economy stinks! ... and why I love my brother

Lay-offs seem to be going around right now the way colds do in the winter.

Case in point: My older brother Nathan, a brilliant computer scientist with a master's degree and a lot of experience, sent us an email yesterday letting us know of some changes in his life:

Due to some severe downsizing at the Vancouver Site, I will not be at my present job with HP after March 27th. They've offered me a brief period to look for scarce job opportunities within HP, plus an open ended period (as long as I want!) to look for opportunities elsewhere. It is early to say what or where the next, exciting phase of my career will consist of. I am still largely in the laborious resume revision and other paperwork stage. I will attempt to gain some time by skipping the shock-denial-anger phase, philosophical life reasessment phase, and the self esteem teardown / rebuild phase. Thanks to all family members for their fine examples in handling life's big changes.
My brother is an eterna…

About Joey


Hobbies & Interests:
comics, inventions, piano, scouts, exploring, reading, science, rocks, outdoors

Most Likely to:
* Draw comic pages and invention ideas
* Explore the woods
* Ride his bike like a maniac
* Draw pictures for his siblings
* Be kind to Eliza and Harmony
* Argue about jobs he's asked to do
* Give his mom sincere hugs and appreciation
* Apologize sincerely when he's been in the wrong (but not until several hours later)
* Be polite and respectful to his teachers and leaders
* Conquer the world with his determination and stubbornness

Least likely to:
* clean his room
* remember what he's asked to do several minutes later
* clean out his backpack
* get in trouble at school
* refuse to eat something (he's our best, most adventurous eater!)
* complain about being tired, even on hikes and adventures

Sometimes gets in trouble for:
* fighting with Michael
* arguing
* talking back, especially about chores
* procrastinating chores or doing a half job

Likely Future Career:

I have six other kids, you know . . . (about Lillian)

It's fun to go to the library and meet other moms. Usually, the twins are at preschool when I go, so I have just Harmony and Eliza with me. I'll be visiting with another mom when she'll say something like, "So you just have two girls?" and I'll say, "No, I have five girls . . . " then I'll pause while their jaw drops a bit, and I'll add, ". . . and two boys."

I realized that most pictures I've posted lately have been of Harmony. Did you know I have six other kids? Want to know more about them? I thought I'd post a little bit about each of them, starting with Lillian:


Almost 10

Hobbies & Interests:
Piano, Violin, Travel, Cooking, Reading

Most Likely to:
* be responsible with anything and everything,
* keep her room neat
* help without being asked
* insist on pushing the stroller when we're out for a walk
* save her money
* be the best babysitter on the planet
* be a peacemaker

Least likely to:
* Procrastinate
* …

Large Family Critics

I wasn't going to say anything about the controversy raging right now over "Octumom" -- you know, the woman in California who had 6 children via in vitro, then went back for more and had 8, all born amazingly healthy at 30 1/2 weeks. Carrying 8 babies that long in a pregnancy is an outright miracle, and their delivery was hailed, rightly, as an amazing act of modern science and medicine.

But then the focus turned to the mother of these 8 babies and as more details emerged, the news articles and blogosphere was raging, and not in a positive way. I watched the interviews with the mom and almost felt sorry for her. I think she was deluded enough to think that she'd be famous -- the next "Jon and Kate Plus Eight" only this time called "Super Single Mom of Fourteen." She didn't seem to "get" that people weren't going to hail her as a hero for having optional procedures to get pregnant when she was an unemployed single mother using …

Digital Scrapbooking Sale -- $1 items!

Scrapbook-Elements has a great Valentines Sale going on!

Not only is MY ENTIRE STORE 40% off (come on, you know you want to look!), there is also a wonderful Sweet Treats category with 63 great items for just $1, including these great kits of mine:

Christina BartholomewChristina's Beautiful Girl Page Set$1.00

... more info

Christina BartholomewChristina's Christmas Blessings Page Set$1.00

... more info

Christina BartholomewChristina's Dreamland Page Set$1.00

... more info

Christina BartholomewChristina's Enchanted Christmas Page Set$1.00

... more info

Christina BartholomewChristina's Sweet Snow Page Set$1.00

... more info

Hurry, though -- sale ends next Friday! Happy Scrapping!

Six Month Magic

Last week, Harmony started pulling up on small things, like our feet and her brother's toy bin. I thought, "hmmm, can I count this as pulling to a stand?"

Yesterday, Harmony did this:

I'm counting it.

Housework Misery

Most moms I talk to hate laundry. The way it piles up, the way it's never done, the way it seems to multiply.

Me? I've never minded laundry much. I wash it all one day, let it pile up in baskets, then fold it the next. Folding laundry is about the only time I watch videos, so it's almost a treat to settle down for several hours and fold. I used to do all the laundry once a week, but the piles became too enormous and overwhelming, so now I wash on Mondays and Thursdays and fold on Tuesdays and Fridays. It always amazes me how many loads I can wash, though, even doing it twice a week. Yesterday, I folded 8 baskets of clothes. My thoughts started wandering towards speculating how much laundry there would be when we have six teenagers at home plus other children. I had to tell my mind to change the subject, as I began to feel a bit overwhelmed.

But while laundry is no big deal to me, what I really hate doing is cleaning my hard floors. I don't mind vacuuming, but …

Like I said . . .

A very merry half birthday to you, Harmony!

Me Me, the World's about Me

The title of this post comes from a song my sister used to sing when her children were being particularly selfish or self-centered. I sing it for my kids, too, but it doesn't seem to work.

So, you want to know more about me? Of course you do! My friend Wendy sent me some interview questions that I really enjoyed answering. (By the way, I tried to find a picture of me that didn't include at least one child without success.)

1. On your bad days, the ones where you get really frustrated, what do you do to help yourself unwind?

One thing that's been helping me lately is reading to the twins at night. They are finally old enough to understand chapter books instead of just picture stories, so I've been reading lots of Junie B. Jones stories to them. As I lie on one of their beds reading, they gather around and usually Joey and Michael and sometimes Lillian wander in the room to laugh and giggle and enjoy it too. It's so unifying to be there laughing over the funny voi…

Shameless Adoration

Harmony's almost six months old, and I know it's sounds clicheish (is that even a word?), but where does the time go? I am so thankful to have her in my life; it's hard to remember life without her. I was sorting through pictures from last year and came across one of our whole family just before a hike we went on. I was looking at my children and thinking, "something's missing here -- where's Harmony?" It took me a moment to realize that the picture was taken before she was born. She entered our lives and captured our hearts immediately. The love I feel for her is as special and unique as the love I felt for my first baby.

She's cute, she's fun, and she's adorable.

Want proof?