Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Long time, no see...

Wow! I've gotten behind in this thing, haven't I? I've been to Texas and back, been in a Christmas parade, and countless others. Perhaps one day I'll get around to posting about those things but I know if I wait to post about life in order, I'll never catch up!

So I'll leave you with a photo of my favorite blessings:

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Recipe for a Pleasantly Quiet Sunday Afternoon

Take two square scraps of muslin, add embroidery hoops/needles/thread, and a rough sketch onto said fabric scraps and what do you get?

Peace and quiet.

It's especially pleasant if you can find a warm sunbeam to sew in.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Shades of pain...

Looking at the photos I've taken over the past few days is interesting. Here's what I mean:

Tuesday morning:

Tuesday evening:

Wednesday morning:

Thursday morning:

Please excuse the spaghetti stains on his face... guess what we had for breakfast? ;)

The progression og the bruise that's blooming in the middle of his face is just really interesting, isn't it? Yesterday Ben asked why Caleb looked like "Rainbow Man"? He is definitely reminiscent of a masked super hero, or a raccoon.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

The Color Purple...

The color purple never made me cringe until today. Everytime I look into this alien little face (he doesn't even look like MY BABY!) it's smiling up at me and yet still, I cringe because man, oh man... it just looks so dang painful!

I can't tell if you can see the damage better with the flash on or off...

Little boys keep you on your toes...

I had several photos of Caleb that I've been meaning to post and now I have more and a story to go along with them.

Remember when I said I took that grey sweater apart? Well, as we wound each section into a "hank" (I think that's what it's called) I tied them off. Then I noticed what a cute turban it would make. Thus the photo of Jeremy and his little genie:

Last week I had to take Ben to the hospital for a minor outpatient-type surgery (although a urethral meatomy doesn't seem minor when you realize what they're cutting on, does it?) and so Daddy stayed home with the others. Daddys aren't used to nap schedules and so when Abby told him that "Caleb looks tired" he took a photo so I could see just how tired he was before Daddy put him to bed:

And finally, last night at about 8pm we heard a loud thud and Libby came in to tell us that Caleb was hurt. From what we've gathered she had "helped" him climb onto the top bunk bed and was helping him down again when something went wrong. "I've made a terrible mistake" she said, as the blood poured from his nose. Several red marks appeared across the tip of his nose and it started swelling as he partook of milkies to keep calm while we continued to monitor him. He kept telling me "Nose. Ow. Hurt. Milkies, please mom." Heartbreaking, really.

Well, I'm not all that familiar with nose injuries so off to the ER we went with Grandma, while Daddy watched the concerned older siblings. Granny met us there and boy was Caleb glad to see her! He clung to her for the duration of his hospital stay, which included a rectal temp check (yikes!) and a CT scan. For the scan he was wrapped in a sheet which was then taped up. Then they secured his head in place with tape but the little squirmy-worm required mommy to lay on top of him and secure his chin as well. As you can imagine, that went over about as well as a lead zeppelin. The scan showed that there were no fractures and no bleeding in the brain, so we were sent on our merry way. He spent the entire night in bed with Mommy, Daddy, and Milkies and seems to be feeling fine, but boy! does it hurt me everytime I look at that purple face:

Friday, November 02, 2007

The Holidays are fast approaching...

As a follow-up to my last post about knitting I thought I would let anyone out there that actually reads this know that there's a month-long how-to thingy going on at Sew, Mama, Sew. I'm looking forward to daily inspiration ;)

Friday, October 26, 2007

Busy Knitting.

I've been so busy lately, it's been crazy! I've been knitting practically everyday, trying to finish up Christmas gifts and winter accesories for the kids. The other night Jeremy helped me frog (unravel) a sweater that I saved from the salvation army pile. It's a wool/acrylic blend in charcoal gray. I ended up with 5 nice sized balls of yarn, and I've already started knitting up some armwarmers for my nephew. It's such a nice neutral color, perfect for guys. Counting out how many pairs of armwarmers I'm going to have to make, I think it's five pair of boys armwarmers, and then two more hat/armwarmer sets for girls, maybe more. Just thinking of it in those terms makes me want to give up. So I think that instead I'll allow myself that I can't make them for everyone and when I get tired of it I will stop. Last year when I felt obligated to finish something, it took me nearly a year to pick my needles up again. Same thing with sewing, if I've agreed to do something I just don't wanna do it anymore. I think I work best as some sort of surprise crafter. Like, I'm only inspired if no one is expecting anything. lol.

Well, back to my needles.


Dyson is one of the best vacuum cleaners you will ever use. I've had a Kirby, an Electrolux, and an Oreck and it is by far superior to all of these. I can't tell you how many times I've loaned my Dyson to someone in the family or someone from church because even they could tell it was superior to their own cleaner. I would love to win a pink Dyson for my mother, she could really use a quality machine.

I love that all the basic attachments are "on board". I love that you don't have to buy bags for it, and that it's super easy to empty the canister. There are several places throughout the machine where you can check for blockages. The canister is clear so you can see how much it picks up, it's incredible (my kids LOVE watching the dust swirl around). It's really just a fantastic cleaning machine.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Who says English food is bad?

So the other night we had boiled sausages-cabbage-and-potatoes which is an old family favorite of mine. Tonight I'm taking the leftovers and making Bubble and Squeak. Mmmmm!

Whoever said English food is bad has obviously never tasted the same recipes that I've made. Bubble and Squeak, Scotch Collops and Stoved Tatties, Roast Beef and Yorkshire Pudding... Yum-YUM!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Everyday there are those moments where you wish that you had a built-in-camera to catch that look, that pose, that event. But by the time you get up, take the camera out of its case and point it at your subject, the moment has passed, and all you are left with is the memory.

Case in point, this morning my cat, followed my coffee cup wherever I set it down, determined that she was going to take a sip or three. I caught her with her nose hovering over it several times, preparing to lap up the sweet milky goodness, and I knew that getting up to get the camera would endanger my precious java. So instead, I petted her, pushing her head back, and told her "No kitteh, u can't haz coffeh."

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Ben's Birthday Loot

Here's the mysterious cloaked stranger:

Here he is, showing off his fox shirt and soft, comfy pants:

And here he is doing his imitation of Bella Lagosi:

Copy cat, copy cat!!!

Yeah, I'll admit it. I have abosolutely no imagination when it comes to thinking up projects on my own. But I'm a whiz at seeing other people's creations and copying them to give to family and friends. Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, right? I hope Erin thinks so.

So here we have coffee-cozies, which also make excellent other-drink-cozies. These aren't just for hot coffee. They're perfect for iced coffee, and cold drinks. Nobody likes icy fingers! So far I made one for my BEST FRIEND, my mom, my mother-in-law, my cousin-in-law, my mom's best friend, and of course MYSELF. Because when I saw them on Erin's blog, I HAD TO HAVE ONE. And once I finished it I HAD TO TRY IT OUT. So my loving, devoted, and indulging husband took me 30 miles to the nearest Starbucks and I bought a grande pumpkin spice frapucchino because it was HOT that day. Which is how I found out that it works fabulously on cold drinks as well as hot ones.

By the way, the mostest funnest thing about this project was the embroidery. I am now as addicted to embroidery as I am to coffee. Especially embroidering the names. I LOVE IT!

You can't tell I've had too much coffee today, can you? ;)

Boys like shirts, too!

I couldn't leave my little man out now could I?

A little heat-n-bond, some scraps of thrifted fabric, and a short length of brown embroidery floss and VOILA! a turtle shirt. The bonus is, the turtle is hiding a stain I couldn't remove.

When my mom saw this she said "Oh, that's that ugly fabric I gave you. It makes a cute turtle shell!"

Another horsie shirt?

When you have two girls, you obviously have to be fair and make one each of EVERYTHING. But since I didn't have another brown shirt, I decided to make Libby's shirt a little different. Then Abby wanted to trade. Then she wanted to trade back. I think she's finally decided that they'll share both of them, which probably means that Abby gets first choice and Libby gets whichever one is left. Which doesn't sound fair, but Libby is much less concerned about such things. Except when it comes to her new rainbow-striped-hoodie-sweater. She ain't sharing that one, much to Abby's annoyance. So, to make a long story short (too late) here is Libby's horse shirt.
Basically I cut out the horse that I had used for Abby's shirt to use as a template. A little heat-n-bond and some cute fabric that reminds me of bandanas (I think it was a fatquarter from JoAnn's) and VOILA! instant applique. And I do mean instant. After I secured the horse to the shirt, I machine stitched just inside the perimeter. I like that frayed look after it's been washed a few times.
Mom says that I'm taking $4 shirts and turning them into $15 shirts. Does that mean I get to keep the $11 that I didn't spend? ;)

Busy, busy, busy...

September is such a busy month! So many birthdays (Dad, Anna, Joel, Denise, Tiger, Benjamin, Fritz, Gabriel M. and Joey M.)...

Some very good friends of ours have moved back to town our little ones couldn't be more thrilled about it. In fact, I think Abby may be "in love" with Little Gabriel. She says she's not, but she sure gets depressed when he leaves, and I spotted them whispering to each other in my rear-view mirror on the way home the other day. They are just so stinkin' cute together!

My first born, my baby, my sweet little darling boy, the answer my prayers, is now NINE! That's half-way to adult! I need to get pictures of him in his presents from mommy, which he wore to "school" today. I made him some lounge-type pants from the softest plaid flannel, thrifted from Goodwill. Then I finally located some freezer paper, so I sketched a fox stencil and painted a shirt. He is apparently most impressed by the pawprint. And I finally got around to making his cloak; I've have the fabric so long that I don't remember whether it's cotton or polyester, but it's so smooth and thick, perfect for running around outside as autumn's chill becomes more evident. And of course, the best gift in my opinion...

Vito the goat. He's so sweet and friendly, a perfect companion for a young farmer.

I finally got some photos of a few things that I've made so I'll try to post those later on this week.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Going thrifting...

I'll try to take photos later of all the "treasures" that I picked up while thrifting yesterday. LOTS of fabric (sheets) to do all that craftiness that I've been doing lately.

Spent today catching up on housework while the older kids were in school. Still more laundry to do...

Saturday, September 08, 2007

SMART Habit Saturday...

I sure hope that leftovers count, or I'm in trouble ;)

This is going to sound so egotistical, but I can't think of another new habit to pick up. I'm not perfect by any stretch of the imagination so maybe I'm just too lazy to pick up any good habits. I already keep the house pretty tidy (but not necessarily "clean", I like a tidy area, but I loathe "cleaning"), keep laundry and dishes cleaned and put away. I've been purging the house of excess, to simplify our lives. I haven't had a cigarette since Monday night. I've stopped impulsivly spending money. I don't even turn the tv on unless Jeremy's home. I don't really participate in gossip because I never really talk to anyone.

I would like to go horseback riding at least three times a week but I'm not sure how I can accomplish this. And I really should stop losing my temper with the kids, especially Ben. I need to work on my scrapbooking stuff, or my sewing. I also have unfinished knitting, and even not-yet-started knitting. I would like to give handmade-homemade things for gifts from now on. I should spend less time reading blogs, but every time I find a new one I read ALL of the archives. Oh well... I'll have to think on this some more.

See? Totally not perfect, but too lazy to pick a new habit. *sigh*

Thursday, September 06, 2007

At long last...

Oh sweet mystery of life how I have missed you... DSL welcome home!

SMART habits so far...

Sunday night we had spaghetti with garlic toast.

Monday we had steaks and baked potatoes.

Tuesday we had Scotch Collops with mushrooms.

Yesterday we had Roast Beef with Yorkshire Pudding.

We have leftover spaghetti and leftover roast/pudding for lunch.

Our options for dinner include cubed steak, meatloaf, or MM's fav sandwich. I think I'll cook the crock pot roast tomorrow.

So far, so good!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Beef... it's what's for dinner.

My poor Jeremy is sick. He even missed church this morning! I'm pretty sure that it's a sinus infection, but you know how men can be when they're sick. Feeling bad makes them even more sensitive and A WHOLE LOT grumpier. He had several quiet hours today while I took the kids to church and then to town.

Amazingly enough, the school schedule has improved my waking abilities, so I was up by eight and had the kids at church by class time... all by myself. Then after church, the five of us headed to the grocery store to purchase dinner for the upcoming week. Our menu will include Marlboro Man's Favorite Sandwich, Roast Beef and Yorkshire pudding, Scotch Collops, Meatloaf w/mashed potatoes, Crockpot Roast with carrots and potatoes, cubed steaks. Sometimes I get the feeling we'd save all kinds of money at the grocery store if we raised/slaughtered our own beef. And we could save a bundle on milk, too.

Now I just need to go through the meat and figure out what day we should eat what, based on the "sell by" dates.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

S.M.A.R.T. Habit Saturday

SMART Habit Saturday is something that I ran across in another of my frequently read blogs. If you click on that link you can familiarize yourself with the logistics, but basically each Saturday you decide on a good habit that you want to form and try to do it each day of the following week. They say that if you do somethng everyday for 21 days it becomes a habit.

I know we all have room for improvement. For instance, I've been keeping house pretty good lately. I've even figured out the secret to getting the kids involved in house keeping. But I'm afraid that my culinary escapades have suffered as a result of my obsessive desire to keep the house organized and tidy. So tomorrow I'm going to take my gorcery list and get supplies for next week so that I can cook dinner EACH and EVERY night. Hopefully the house won't go back to looking like a pig sty as a result.

So I guess I'll be back next week to report on my results.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Speaking of School...

Here is what day one of K4 looked like around here.

And Abigail talks constantly about her new friends Mary (pictured above) and Nikki. It is just so cute to see their little faces light up when they see each other.

And this...

One of the craft blogs that I check everyday is houseonhillroad. That's where I picked up the embroidery bug. And since Abigail is one of the most horse-crazy four-year-olds you will ever meet, this is for her.

I used Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron as a reference for the sketch that I drew. Then I got some transfer (tracing) paper from my dear mother-in-law and put the image on the shirt. I went over it with my water-soluable pen just to make sure it stayed there until I was done sewing. Then it was just a matter of backstitching the image and I used a french-knot for the eye. After I trimmed all the loose strings in back I ironed some stabilizer over the back, so that Little Miss won't be tickled by all those threads.

This is what I have been up to...

I've rediscovered my love of sewing. And I'm sure that it has something to do with all the crafty bogs I've been reading. (Don't worry, I'll be updating my list over there with links to all these crafty-type blogs).

Here we have a small group of girls that just can't wait 'til Christmas. Know why? Because that's when they get to go live with some little girls that look just like them! Isn't that exciting? And by the time Christmas gets here, this group will have grown and will most likely include a few boys as well.

Here's where I purchased the pattern for these cuties :

Life is Changing....

I've not been online as much as I used to be. I used to have an unyielding compulsion to check my "friends list" at Livejournal several times a day and I found myself drwn down into un-Christian behaviors and environments. At the time it seemed harmless but I can see where these unwholesome activities were very detrimental to my mental health and my marriage.

Nowadays I find myself instead drawn to "blogs" written by other mothers, Christians, crafters. I have been inspired to do more with my hands and more with the time I am given each day, now that the girls are both in preschool and Ben is going to Grandma's daily for his homeschooling. My house is cleaner, my family is happier, and I feel a wonderful sense of accomplishment when I look around me.

I have been reading a wonderful book Finding the Hero in Your Husband by Dr. Julianna Slattery. Man, I really suggest this book to all women, not just the married ones, or the ones that think that their marriage is in trouble. When I've read passages aloud to Jeremy he is amazed at how much this woman understands men. Our congregation has ordered 10 copies for Ladies Bible Class material. It is really that good. I can feel the Lord working in my life. I think that my prayers for Him to transform me into the person that He wants me to be are being answered and I am so so grateful. Soon, I'll post an update with photos from the girls first day of school and also of some of the things I've been making.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Been So Busy

My life hardly ever slows down long enough for me to blog, but in the interest of not getting too far behind I'll update on a few things.

Recently I climbed onto my arabian named Kizzam,

grabbed a lead line connected to my mom's horse, Maggie,

and rode about five miles to move them from Jeremy's aunt's house to our house. That was SO fun, but tiring! My two dalmatians, Freckles and Milo, who are both ten years old, stayed with us the entire trip. And so now the horses are here at home, which means we don't have to drive five miles back and forth twice a day to feed them.

Once we got the horses moved I went to the stockyard and bought two small goats

at auction to help clean up the pens that we will be keeping the horses in. Now the kids accompany me twice a day when we go out to feed.

Caleb LOVES this and you should hear him calling those goats. "Goakgoakgoak!" Too funny!

This past weekend we attending a VBS at Beech Island Church of Christ and I got to see some faces from my childhood. The real shocker was how much the kids that I used to babysit have grown. They're now 18 and 14!!! Makes me feel soooooo old.

Also, Caleb thought it would be a good idea to dump an entire glass of sweet tea on my laptop, so I'm now accessing the 'net on Jeremy's desktop until we figure out if Ol' Blue will recover from its sticky bath. Jeremy assured me that if it doesn't make it, he will get me another, but boy do I sure hate to spend the money on something I already had!

Pretty soon I've got to get off my behind at continue cleaning this house....

Thursday, June 28, 2007

The Duck & The Devil

There was a little boy visiting his grandparents on their farm. He was given a slingshot to play with out in the woods. He practiced in the woods; but he could never hit the target. Getting a little discouraged, he headed back for dinner. As he was walking back he saw Grandma's pet duck.Just out of impulse, he let the slingshot fly, hit the duck square in the head and killed it. He was shocked and grieved! In a panic, he hid the dead duck in the wood pile; only to see his sister watching! Sally had seen it all, but she said nothing.

After lunch the next day Grandma said, "Sally, let's wash the dishes" But Sally said, "Grandma, Johnny told me he wanted tohelp in the kitchen." Then she whispered to him, "Remember the duck?" So Johnny did the dishes.

Later that day, Grandpa asked if the children wanted to go fishing and Grandma said, "I'm sorry but I need Sally to help make supper."Sally just smiled and said, "Well that's all right because Johnny told me he wanted to help" She whispered again, "Remember the duck?" So Sally went fishing and Johnny stayed to help

After several days of Johnny doing both his chores and Sally's; he finally couldn't stand it any longer. He came to Grandma and confessed that he had killed the duck. Grandma knelt down, gave him a hug and said, "Sweetheart, I know. You see,I was standing at the window and I saw the whole thing, but because I love you, I forgave you. I was just wondering how long you would let Sally make a slave of you."

Thought for the day and every day there after? Whatever is in your past, whatever y! ou have done... and the devil keeps throwing it up in your face (lying, cheating, debt, fear, bad habits, hatred, anger, bitterness, etc.)...whatever it is...You need to know that God was standing at the window and He saw the whole thing. He has seen your whole life. He wants you to know that He loves you and that you are forgiven.He's just wondering how long you will let the devil make a slave of you.

The great thing about God is that when you ask for forgiveness; He not only forgives you, but He forgets. It is by God's grace and mercy that we are saved. Go ahead and make the difference in someone's life today. Share this with a friend and always remember:God is at the window! When Jesus died on the cross; he was thinking of you!

(Copied from a forwarded email)

Saturday, June 16, 2007

My ten year high school reunion was this weekend (well, actually I graduated a year earlier than the kids in my grade because I could not wait to get away from them...but I digress). Part of me felt obligated to show up, looking fantastically perfect, with my wonderfully perfect husband, and photos of my beautifully perfect children to show those people who treated me badly, to prove to them that I turned out way happier than they ever dreamed of being themselves in spite of their teasing and taunting and hatefulness. But then I remember that, as a Christian, I have to ignore this petty sense of revenge or whatever it is and just hope for the best for them... and I do, really. But still, I wouldn't know what to say to any of them, they didn't hang out with me in high school, why would I PAY to hang out with them now? What would we talk about? What would I even have in common with them?

When I discussed the upcoming social event with my completely perfect husband, he said that if my intentions were to go see people that I cared about and wanted to spend time with, he would be happy to foot the bill for clothes/mani/pedi/etc and escort me to the ball, but if I only wanted to go out of spite then I needed to rethink my motivations. See what I mean? He's just so darn PERFECT!

Luckily for me, I totally forgot that it was to take place this weekend and so I spent the day with my hubby, my kids, and my parents, and then I went to a birthday party for my little second cousin, whom I ADORE. And I feel that my time was much better spent this way.

And now that I've dodged that bullet, hopefully I will stop having these stupid dreams where I am BACK IN SCHOOL and trying to figure out where my books/locker/classes are even though I eventually realize that I'm married, with children and better stuff to do than hang out in a high school, which I've apparently only been doing because it was a "hobby" type thing. So then I show them my diploma and tell them all to bugger off.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Ow, my legs are killing me. It's got to be all this riding I've been doing this weekend. After being cooped up in the house for two weeks (sick with the "creeping crud") I rode Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. And in spite of my sore legs, I'll most likely being riding again today. Call it an addiction, but I just can't be kept off a horse for very long.

Tomorrow I've got an appointment in town with the local children's consignment shop. I plan on taking as much of my stuff as I can, hopefully they'll take it all in spite of the limit of 50 items on the first visit. What's nice about this shop is that they give you your money up front, so there's no fear of being robbed like I was when the last place I consigned with went out of business and disappeared with my items and my money.

Summer is here and with it the heat, although the reprieve we've experienced with the rain has made life more bearable.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Libby had her K5 graduation last week and participated beautifully and next year she and Abby will attend K4 together. After a discussion with her teacher we decided that it would be better for her to get a more solid foundation under her, so that she can learn all that there is to learn in the K5 that she will attend again after that (reading, cursive, adding/subtracting). So she will be two years behind other kids her age, but when she was diagnosed they told me that her social and academic age was about 3 1/2 so that put her at the same age as Abby. And Abby is certainly looking forward to going to school with Libby next year.

Caleb is growing like a weed! Well, actually, he really doesn't seem bigger, but he's talking more and more. So I guess he's growing like a ... sponge?

Ben is nearly done with the 2nd grade and spends all his time at his grandma's house, since she took over homeschooling him. I think the reason that she did that was because it makes it easier to homeschool Gabriel... ^_~ My mom mentioned that he should spend more time at home, but I pointed out to her that if I'd had the opportunity, I would have spent all my time with my cousin.

My friend, Anna (the midwife that delivered Caleb), and I were having lunch the other day when she told me that due to the complications I continue to have when delivering babies, the head midwife said that if I get pregnant again they won't take me as a patient. That kinda ticks me off, but the point is moot at the moment, seeing as how we have NO room for another kid in this three bedroom house.

I finally got my horses back from my mom's house. They are now at Jeremy's Aunt Sharon's house, which is only about 5 miles from us. So I've been riding as much as possible. Sunday I decided I would try to get up on my Kizza,'s bare back by jumping, something I've never really mastered. I was almost on him, when I accidentally jerked on the reins, he side-stepped, and I went the rest of the way over his back and landed on my shoulder. (Jeremy said that from across the yard it looked like a swan-dive) It rattled my brain around a little, but I didn't feel too bad afterward. Well now, my neck is KILLING ME! Can you get whiplash from falling off a standing horse? ^_~ I've been taking ibuprofen for it but I may have to break out the oxycodone I've squirrelled away.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

I'm a bad blogger

It's been forever since I've updated and there are a few things that I must share.

Libby was diagnosed with autism in late February. This was not that surprising and yet at the same time still kind of shocking to hear. Really this diagnosis doesn't change anything, but it does give us some insight on why Libby behaves the way she does and so we are able to address issues that arise in a more understanding way. One morning I heard the girls playing in the laundry room and upon inspection, this was what I discovered (of course, Abby may have instigated this stunt) :

Caleb also turned 1 at the end of February. He is such a happy toddler, and since he started eating solid food he's turned into such a bottomless pit! (Case in point: he just stole a banana from me and he's eaten almost the whole thing by himself!) He still gets milkies from mommy and probably will for a while longer. I know you're not supposed to have a favorite child ... so I'll just not finish that sentance ^_~
Abby is also doing well. She is such a fantastic big sister. She even mommys Libby sometimes! And she's such a good little helper. Here she is doing dishes for mommy:

Ben is breezing through second grade at an amazing rate. He is very confident in math, but even though his reading skills have improved dramatically he still lacks confidence in his ability. And I don't have any recent photos of him because he's always over at his grandma's or his granny's or his cousins' house!

Speaking of cousins, Gabriel's little brother Gideon is just as cute as he can be, as you can plainly see:
Hopefully I'll have more opportunities to update this blog, but I'm not making any promises ^_~