Sunday, December 28, 2008

Wangler Christmas Party, '08

Today the Wangler Christmas party was held in Chandler, Texas at the lovely home of Chris and Lyndie Wangler. Lots of cousins, brothers and sisters were there and a great time was had by all. Here are some of the pics (taken, of course, by my new camera!).
This is Dana's family. Dana is #1 of the 10 children of the Wangler clan. All of her children and grandchildren were in town for the event. We loved seeing everyone and how much Nick and Natalie have grown. And little Chloe (who is expecting a new sibling in May of 2009) has really gotten big. What a lovely family.
The Paul Wangler family with 2 of their 5 kids with them. Hannah (who started college this year) and Daniel are in the wagon.

All the first cousins.

After all the pics of families were taken, Conrad was left by himself with the Paparazzi. Hmmm, you know, pictures were taken of our family but for some reason they didn't show up when I downloaded. I wonder what happened to them. Well, if someone got one, please e-mail it to me and I'll put it on here. Crazy!

We always do a present exchange and, used to be, Sadie and Mads were the only kids and we made sure we got something they would like because they would end up with it anyway. Now they are not the only ones and it was amazing how many kids were there. In the end, Mads ended up with what she brought after all. She was happy about that. Anna did, too. Sadie got lip gloss and she was just fine with her haul.

By the way, there are 3 new babies due this coming year to the Wangler family. The first, in Feb., then May and June. Who knows how many new ones there will be by the end of the year. Congrats all you parents to be.

This party was wonderful. We saw all the cousins, sisters, brothers, in-laws, out-laws (not really, there aren't any in the Wangler clan - that we would admit to, anyway) had great food and fellowship. The Wanglers are a great bunch of people and I was very lucky to marry into such a loving family.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

I hope yours was blessed, too!


I have some old business to take care of.

On the 19th, we went over to Shreveport to get ready for Mumsey's 70th birthday party. Auntie B and Pamela had done all the pre-party preparations and had our duties lined up for us on party day so everything went smoothly. Yeah, right.

First, the florist was late. We kept calling and they would tell us "he's 10 min. away" and an hour and a half later (from the first phone call) he showed up. The flowers were gorgeous. Then, when our men arrived with the cake, it had slid a little so it was mussed and the sandwiches "weren't fit to serve at a tailgate party", according to Auntie B who had specifically requested certain kinds of breads and those did not show up. Now, in all fairness to Kroger, the chicken salad (which for some reason I decided to try) was tasty. However, in Auntie B's defense, it wasn't what she ordered and had every reason to be upset. You decide if you want to order sandwich trays from Kroger. If you ask Auntie B? She won't be doing that again.

Now, I wasn't at any of these festivities, I was at Sonic trying to get the 2 Dr. Peppers and one cherry-vanilla coke that I ordered. First, I went to the drive thru and the card reader wasn't working. Well, I didn't have cash so they requested that I go to Brookshires (a grocery store for those unfamiliar) that was located behind the Sonic and use the ATM. Excuse me? I'm not paying a fee to get cash for a place whose responsibility it is to make sure all their equipment is working properly. aaarrrggghhhh! Well, it just so happened that we needed some last minute things (OK, just a pen for the sign-in book table) so I decided to go to the store anyway. Figured I'd get cash back when I bought the pen. Walking in, I was nearly bowled over by a pre-teen who was either blind (no disrespect meant) or just plain rude (I'm betting on rude) because I had the audacity to walk in the "in" door and, apparently, that's where she wanted to be walking. Didn't matter that I was already there. I was dumbfounded. I wish I had video of this because describing it doesn't do it justice.

Anywho, I've now checked out and gotten some cash and am back at Sonic. Instead of drive-thru, however, I've decided on a stall because the drive thru is backed up. When I call, I tell the nice person on the other end that I've already ordered these drinks through the drive thru and if they still have them, they can just bring those out. He tells me he'll check it out. He comes back "welcome to Sonic, may I help you?". I said - in my head "forget it, just order them again", so I did. You know how when you go somewhere you have a preconceived notion of how long something should take and when it starts taking longer you check the clock? Well, I checked the clock after that preconceived amount of time and 5 min. later, still no drinks. I'm sure the truck a couple of stalls down has gotten their order, which they ordered after me, but I can't be 100% sure so I call in and ask and they say they'll be right out. Another truck pulls in and orders a cup of ice and onion rings. I think to myself "if they get their order before me, I will get my 'Auntie B' on and they'll be sorry. (We say "get our Auntie B on when we feel we have been wronged and decide to tell someone about it instead of letting it slide - powers that be need to know these things.) So, sure enough, Mr. cup o' ice and onion ring gets his order and my hand flies to the red button. "Welcome to Sonic, may I help you?" says the person on the other end. "I HAVE BEEN EXTREMELY PATIENT AND ALL I ORDERED WAS 2 DR. PEPPERS AND A CHERRY-VANILLA COKE AND I STILL DON'T HAVE THEM" I said rather insistantly into the little box. I'll be right out there ma'am comes a voice aquiver with fear. OK, it didn't sound scared, but I like to think that it was. Sure enough, here comes my drinks in less than a minute.

Now, you may ask yourself why I sat there for at least 15 min. after I ordered my drinks. Most people would have just left. Well, part of me kept thinking "they're on their way". "Surely it won't be long now". "Really? Well, let's just see how long this thing takes" was the final thought. Besides, I needed a Dr. Pepper and nothing soothes the savage soul like a Sonic Dr. Pepper, unless, of course, the savage-ness was cause by Sonic in the first place.

OK, enough grousing. The party was fabulous. I saw all sorts of Mom's friends, most of whom I had met and one in particular that I had not. I was so excited to meet my mother's high-school sweetheart, Henry Whitlow. What a fabulous, cheery, hugable man. One of the first things he said to me was "I love the blog". That someone my mother holds in such high esteem likes something I do was a heart warming thing for me. Thank you, Henry Whitlow. You are a wonderful person. Not because you like my blog but because you are a dear friend to my mother and took time out of your busy life to honor her with your presence at her party. You made her party even more fabulous. I'm sorry I didn't get to say goodbye to you, I must have been in the back, washing dishes in that fabulous dishwasher (for real, it was fabulous, washes dishes in about a minute and a half - I want one for the house!). Hopefully we'll see each other again, but if not, I enjoyed meeting you.

Two of my step-sisters were there and it was lovely of them and Perry to come and all sorts of people from various walks of my Mom's life were there. I know she enjoyed it (because she told us so, several times) and we were happy to do it for her. Great big KUDOS to my Auntie B and Pamela for making it happen. In the words of my Opper "you done good".

I have no pics because my camera was again on the fritz. I think it was the battery (I know it was now - you'll know why in a minute) and I didn't even bring it. I knew Auntie B. would have hers and Pamela hers so I'm hoping I get some pics from them to post on here at a later date.

Now, onto Christmas...
On Sunday afternoon, Conrad and I got to go home, leaving the girls with my Mother and, for one night, my sister. How lovely it was for my darling Conrad and I to have some "one on one" time. Thank you, Mumsey and Pamela for a truly special Christmas gift.
Then, we went back Christmas Eve. Spent some time getting ready for the big day, and then, BAM! It was Christmas morning. I was awaken by Sadie at 5am and if you can believe it, I told her to go back to sleep. Actually, I turned on the TV in our room and told her to watch "The Christmas Story" (you know, "you'll shoot your eye out with that" movie) which is a favorite Christmas Day showing of ours. It plays non-stop on TBS or TNT or some cable network and we love it. Anyway, I think she went back to sleep and we ended up getting up at a more respectable 7am. I am normally a "let's get up at 5am" kinda girl but I was feeling kinda crappy, lots of yucky stuff accumulating in my head like the snow in Wisconsin, so I opted for a little more sleep.
Then, Aaron lit the advent candles and Madeline read the Christmas story out of the Bible and Conrad said the prayer. Then the presents...I got to open one of mine first...a new digital camera! WooHoo! A new Kodak EasyShare M863. Let me tell you something, it's beautiful, it's red and best of all, IT WORKS!!!!! And, tonight, when I plugged in the new dock (which charges the batteries while it sits there) it just poof, worked like a charm, like it was made for this computer and everything is hunky dory! I love Kodak! That's why there are pics for this part of the blog.
Here' s Mumsey with her new sweatshirt. See the snowflakes?

This is her telling me "I told you not to get me anything, my party was present enough". Yeah, know those snowflakes? They are all our names...this is Sadie.
Cool, huh? My mother is impossible to buy for. So we have to get creative. My friend, Jackie - from work, told me her embroidery machine would do this and so I gave her the sweatshirt and she turned it into this beautiful piece of art that my mother will treasure. Thank you, Jackie!
Anna got a scooter and it came with all the pads, the helmet, a backpack and a phone. Just what every girl on the move needs.
Then we traveled down to Natchitoches (well, really, Campti) to see Pamela and Greg and their 3 dogs and 6 cats and have Christmas dinner. My sister puts out the spread!
After opening presents, Mads gets fashionable with the bows.

It was a lovely Christmas, spent with family, as it should be. Next year, we will be here. We will put up the Christmas tree the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I promised the girls that since we didn't even get the first Christmas item out this year we would really do it up next year. So, watch out, world, Wanglers will go Christmas on you next year!
I hope your Christmas was blessed, safe and family-filled.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The letter

Today, we got a letter in the office, placed on the desk behind me where I would see it, but not right away. I scanned it and sent it to myself but apparently didn't save it right because it won't upload to here. However, this is what it said:

"Sorry Mrs. Jacky and Ms. Lisa for going up there to the office every time of the Day. I won't go there anymore for the year, and will show no more bad things. And I will stop telling stories about missing lunch."

Now, after dissecting this letter, we surmise it probably came from our little "FOV12" (see previous post). What gave it away was the "show the bad things and telling stories about missing lunch" this boy does this often (the lunch thing, not the "bad" thing).

This amused me and touched me and made me quite aware of some parenting going on here. I appreciate his mother making him write the apology, I bet he does quit coming up there so often. However, I like to think we're just such loving, wonderful people that he enjoys coming to visit. Well, we'll see what happens next year.

And, yes, I know the whole quote should have been indented at the beginning and end of the lines but I indented the first line and fully expected to go back and do the rest after I finished but seems my keyboard and my blog aren't really speaking to each other except for the most basic of commands, like typing so, all you grammer/speech people out there, as Sadie is fond of saying "build a bridge and get over it".

Hope y'all enjoyed all that cooooollllldddd weather! Yikes was it cold or what?

Monday, December 15, 2008

Ziplocs, who knew you could use them for this?

This post has no pictures but this blog was made for (true) stories like this.

I was walking down the hall at school today and a 3rd grader tells me a boy is throwing up in the bathroom. I asked him "Is he really puking?" and made a retched puking sound (because 3rd grade boys are impressed with bodily function noises) and he said "yes" and I thought to myself "well, I'll be seeing him in a bit". So a little time goes by and here comes we'll call him "frequent office visitor #12"- or FOV12 for short.

I look at him out in the hall and he holds up (and no, I'm not making this up) a large ziploc with...yes, you guessed it...what can only be called the remains of whatever he ate. I said "I know you did NOT puke in that bag to show me". He just stood there. I told him to go throw it away, and he actually told me "I have to keep it so I can throw up in it again". I told him that there are toilets and trash cans all over the school and that those were proper receptacles for such an activity, ziploc bags were NOT.

Frankly, it was very hard to keep a straight face through this whole ordeal. Never in my life would I have thought I would see such a sight. When he left the office to, I hope, to rid himself of the evidence. Jackie and I laughed and laughed. I nearly wet my pants I was laughing so hard.

I hope you enjoyed my little tale. I have witnesses that can attest that it's true. They'll laugh when you ask them about it but they'll vouch for me.

I hope where you are it's warmer and less precipitation coming down.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Happy Birthday, Sadie!

Today is Sadie's 10th birthday. We took cupcakes to school (and no, she didn't bring me one!) and then went to see Abby (the one in the middle of the picture) in Fruitcakes playing at Theatre Arlington. I highly recommend it. Very humorous and touching. My favorite line? Uttered by Abby herself "Lord, Momma, there's chicken pox in heaven!". If that doesn't make you want to go see it, I don't know what will. I have discount coupons up at the school if you would like to go see it and get a deal. It's a good holiday show. Anyway...

Sadie has two girls spending the night, both named Abby (although, one is Abby and one is Abi). We'll have a "real" party after Christmas when all our Saturdays (and those of her guests) aren't taken up with Elf shows and other family obligations.

I'm sure you're all waiting for my traditional "Birthday toast" to my oldest daughter. You shan't be disappointed.

This year I have seen my Sadie blossom. She has come out of her shell, so to speak. She's taking dance (of her own volition) and I was worried about her performing in front of people especially these "Elf Shows". (Elf shows in case you're new to the blog are Christmas shows performed at local nursing homes and other holiday occasions such as the community Christmas party at our church tomorrow - frankly, they are as much a holiday tradition around Arlington as...well...I don't know of anything except perhaps the parade that has gone on as long as Elf Shows.) In these shows, the kids are right there in front of the people. Sometimes that's more daunting than being up on a stage where you can't see people. However, I could tell after the first one, the performance "bug" had bit her. She loves doing them and if she takes dance next year, I don't think there will be a problem with the recital.

Also, I have seen her "blossom" physically. I think you all remember the post when I announced to the world she now has a bra. If you don't, well, you are now up to date.

She has her own style completely different from her sisters (and, frankly, mine) and that's OK. I want her to be her own person.

The girl is smart. She's not necessarily motivated but she's smart. She's still a procrastinator and would rather wait until the last minute to do something and many times there are extra points for just getting me to sign an assignment or test. Does she do this? No. She doesn't need the points. She has faltered from her straight "A"s but considering I'm not on her 24-7 to get her homework done, I'm impressed. My theory (probably wrong but, too bad) is that I've spent the last 5 years saying "get your homework your homework...did you do your homework...GET YOUR HOMEWORK DONE!!!!!!!!!!!!! If she hasn't gotten it by now, she is just not going to get it. If it's a big thing, yeah, I'm on her. But for her everyday assignments, that's her responsibility. If her grades drop, she will suffer the consequences. I haven't figured out anything that works, yet. But I will. Oh the joy (for me) when that day comes.

She has loyal friends and they fight and make up and act like 10 year olds and I love every minute of it. She stands up for herself when they fight and while I appreciate that in her and, actually admire her because I didn't have that much self-confidence when I was her age, I feel for the friend who has offended her because she isn't quick to forgive. (Thank you, Katelyn, for being patient with her and waiting her out.)

She is getting out of "kid" stuff like cartoonish movies and very much coming into the "pre-teen" world. Right on target. She's listening more to "mainstream" radio - country is her style -than Radio Disney although there's tunes on there she still likes.

I dread the day that those hormones start raging because we already clash on most everything but, forewarned is fore-armed. I'm preparing mentally now and stocking up on Valium and tequila for the event. (I'm kidding. I don't know anyone who takes Valium and I drink the tequila now!)

So far, boys are only in the "like from afar" stage. I've seen evidence of a crush and nearly fainted at the show of affection (a big sign with her "crush's" name on it) it gave me a reality check. Man, this boy thing isn't far off is it? Perhaps drinking all the tequila now isn't such a good idea. Conserve, woman!

Even with all this growth, she's becoming more of a Momma's girl. She hugs me more often than she used to and is just as likely to want to snuggle or crawl up in my lap as Madeline. I like that change.

All in all, I really kinda like who she is becoming. And while I don't understand some of it (like where she gets her self-confidence because, again, at that age, I didn't have it) I appreciate it and just stand back and let her deal with things. I am hoping that's right and that she will someday appreciate it.

Sadie, I can't wait to see what this year brings...or can I? Keep being the lovely girl you are. Stand strong and stick to your guns but know when to bend - not break - for the sake of friendship. Some friendships are worth that. Study hard, please? Work smart. The work is so much easier when you do it a little at a time instead of cramming a whole report into two days. Keep on growing into the beautiful young lady you are becoming. I love you.

And, since it became "the day after Sadie's birthday" since I started writing this post, Happy Birthday to our neighbor Phil!

Oh, and since it's now 1:17 am, I'm going to put this on here since I know Jennifer reads the blog. That "Azul margarita" is the best. thing. ever.! If you like margaritas, this stuff is in a bottle (duh) and you put it in your freezer and it slushes up and you squish the bottle for it to come out but it's still easy to get out and it's the smoothest margarita! No "ooch - wow, I can taste the tequila" feeling in your mouth, just smooth enjoyable yummyness. Thank you for the "just 'cause" gift, you're t-rrific.!