Wednesday, December 30, 2009

And to Continue....

I'm skipping Christmas at the moment because there is so much to do for that blog and moving right on to today. I took the boys to get their teeth cleaned. It was the first time for Kaden and Brady hadn't been in a year or so. I know I'm a bad parent...don't judge! JK. Anyway, Kaden was siked...Brady was....well nervous. Kaden hopped up in the chair and was ready to go!

We had talked about it the night before and I told them they were just going to brush his teeth and make them really shiny. He did great! He got x-rays and everything. He let the lady clean them right up and was so excited to be a "big boy."

He even showed off his pearly whites for my many pictures. I was so proud of him. He sat in my lap while Brady waited to get started.
"My need water," he said making a face. I explained he couldn't drink anything until the dentist took a look. The next thing I know....he's throwing up all over both of us. Apparently, he didn't agree with the floride and it made him sick. After I finished catching it in my hand (gross I know!) The hygentist handed us a trash can. So, off we went to the bathroom to clean up. He was just fine after that. It was weird.

Because I was in the bathroom with Kaden, I missed all the photo ops with Brady. He had already told me "No flash photography, please." Like some kind of Diva he is sometimes.
Both boys checked out just fine with "A pluses for everyone," said Dr. Darby. I informed him that we were over acheivers at the Pillstrom household. He agreed!

Oh, where to begin?

Well, I'll start with the fact that I haven't blogged in forever! I seemed to have lost the plug for my camera and didn't want to post boring blogs with no pics. It was either that or I'mjust too lazy! I'm sure it's the ladder! I did really lose the plug...until we got new furniture and dug around in the old couch and it appeared. It appeared along with a few other things like a gameboy, a shoe (I know!), and I'm really embarressed to tell you a plate. No, I'm really serious! So, tonight I downloaded my pics and thought I'd do a few posts with pics.

My time had been consumed with preparing for the church Christmas party. Myself along with a wonderful group of ladies planned the party for the women's ministry. It was a big assignment and it was a hit! We went very non-traditional this year playing games and pairing attenders with someone they didn't know for the dinner. (Gasp!) I did! Seriously, I had them randomally pair up and then told them that's who they would be sitting with. I really thought I'd come to church that Sunday and there would be a mod kicking me out! Instead, many ladies thanked me for making them get out of their comfort zone! It was crazy but God totally did his thing that night!

One of the traditions we did keep was decorating the tables. Ladies volunteer to decorate with their Christmas ware. So, here is my table.

Last year, my MIL bought me an 8 place setting just for this occasion. I love my new plates and we have been eating off of them since Thanksgiving. Most of the things on the table are from Old Time Pottery so you know they aren't very expensive.

And of course, I edited the photos to bring out the red!

Not only was I the lead planner, I got the honor of MC of the night! I gave my camera away to a friend not knowing what to expect when it came to pics of me! But you know what? You really can tell I've lost some weight! So, thanks camera friend for making me not look so bad!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Leaving on the Midnight train to ......

After much anticipation, Brady and I finally had the chance to ride the train to Jackson, MS for his Spotlight field trip! Two days, 50+ second graders, we were destined to have a blast, right?
The day started off slow. The train was two hours late getting in from Chicago. Apparently, the weather in the rest of the world isn't like it is here! Seriously, I know the world revolves around the Pillstrom house, right? So, it was snowing in Chicage which made the train late.

Finally, we boarded the train. Brady was excited that we were rooming with a friend of his from class. I'm not going to publish his name, well, because I didn't ask his mom if it was ok. So, back to the story! Riding the train is a lot like being on a plane. Except for the massive leg room, no security, and no one giving you a dirty look for not turning off your electronic device!

This was the first time for us both and Brady was full of energy and super excited!
4 hours and a big fat nap later, we made it to Jackson. A bus picked us up and we went to eat lunch. Then off to the Museum of Natural Science.
The kids got the opportunity to work on a science lab and while they did, I hung out with this cute guy!

During their lab, they learned about animals, their habitats, and how animals become extinct. Then they met two of the residents. A snake that poops as self defense. (I'm not joking!) they also met this little guy. I don't remember his name but he was really cute! So, alligators have heart similar to people with 4 chambers. And when you lay them on their backs, they go into like a trance. Then when you flip them back over they're all disorentied! It was really interesting.

After the lab, we had a scavenger hunt through the museum. I enjoyed it and made us really look at the displays.
That night included dinner and a play. I didn't take my camera just because I was dressed up and didn't want to wear a backpack!
The next day, we hiked all over downtown Jackson to visit the old and new capitols as well as the governor's mansion.

I couldn't resist taking many pictures of the detail work in the new capitol. They call it "new" it was built in 1903. I love old buildings the craftmanship is amazing. And of course, no photo is complete until it's been edited to enhance its beauty!

We boarded the train again around 6 and made the 4 hour trek back to Memphis. It was awesome getting dropped off right next to the car! Unlike the airport, you just hop off the train and there you are in the parking lot! I loved the trip and I loved spending time with Brady! On the down side, he stopped calling me "Mommy" and started calling me "Mom." He also wouldn't hold my hand for very long! It makes me so sad that he's growing up so fast!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

School's out....

for now! We're on Thanksgiving break and so I thought it would be fun to take the boys out for a photo shoot. Mom was in town last weekend because my grandmother was in the hospital. I talked her into leaving her good camera with me so I could get some good shots of the kids.
There's a church in town that had some beautiful yellow leaves on the ground. Then we went to this cute little bridge just up the road where we've taken pics before. The boys had a blast climbing trees, throwing leaves, and just goofing around.

Some of the pics are edited, some are not. I love the one of Kaden's shoes. Mom spent a fortune on a pair of Spongebob Sketchers and he refuses to wear them! Instead, he loves these $15 Walmart shoes.

Now, I'm pretty biased but you have to admit...this is one beautiful child!

And this one is georgous! I'm so happy that my kids inherited mine and Tony's photogenticness. Is that even a word?

I love this last pic of Kaden! He could totally be a supermodel! This would make a great album cover for the new release he's working on! Just kidding. Though he would make records if he could! Maybe I should put him up on YouTube so he can be "discovered"!!!!!!
These two fellows are what I am thankful for this year! Well, and Tony, and Jesus, and my job, and my family...well....I guess there's a lot more but I'll stop before I bore you!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I've turned into one of those people who love to edit photos! I've had Photoshop Elements for a year or so and I just love learning new techniques! Today, we went to the zoo and I just had to take some super fun pictures. And, of course I had to edit them before I could even think about a nap...even though I have bronchitis and could use the rest! What the heck...I haven't rested all week!
So, the next few pics are the boys. We saw the new Teton Trek today. There are tables outfront of the exihibit and we stopped to eat our picnic. The boys had a blast just running and playing in the open area! They are both sleeping right now!

I'm thinking this one might be my Christmas card. I know it's not very Christmasy but It's a great pic of the boys.

I don't know what it is about boys...but they can make a gun out of anything!

I just love Brady's face. Of course his "gun" was bigger and he's obviously shooting Kaden who had a much smaller gun.

The Grizzly bears were adorable! There are three of them and they look really young. They were all huddled up and you had to walk over the bridge to see them. I think they are still a little shy. Of couse, we go to the zoo a lot so I didn't take many pics. And I'm too tired to work on editing the rest. So, you'll just to wait it out!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A New Toy

This school year, I am the sponsor of the student newspaper. It's called The Eagle Talon and I'm loving working with the kids on it! We haven't had a paper in 3 years so it's taking a while to get students interested in it! Well, you know it's because you actually have to read, right?
Anyway, I applied for a grant at the beginning of the year to buy a new camera for the kids to use. I was awarded the grant and finally got the camera in today. Of course I just had to bring it home and learn the ins and outs. I mean, what kind of teacher would I be if I didn't even know how to use the camera, right?
So, I brought it home and of course I couldn't just takes pics and not edit them. So, here's to the new camera! I'm jealous that I don't own one of these myself!

Sunday, November 01, 2009


Apparently, I'm the world's worst blogger! I haven't blogged in waaaayyyy over a month. Ya see, What had happened was...I really don't spend a whole lot of time on the computer these days. Between soccer, school, church, and all the other stuff, I just haven't been able to sit down and think. So, sorry about the excuses. Also, I had decided to upload some pics for this post and I can't seem to find my cord for the camera. I'll work on that in my spare time!

As for our world, Brady is doing great in school. He loves being in spotlight class and he can't wait for the field trip he's getting to take in December. He and I will get to ride a train to Jackson, MS with his gifted class. While there, we will visit the Museum of Natural Science, watch A Christmas Carol on stage, visit the capital, old capital and the governor's mansion. Then we will head back to Memphis. I'm so super excited about this trip. Unfortunatly, only one of us can go and since Tony's on call that weekend, it gets to be me!

Kaden is also loving school. His day consists of mornings in the preschool at my school. There he has a student buddy for each block. They help him with what ever and even get to plan lessons and snacks for the class. It's a learning lab for the students and the kids just love it! Then he hops on a bus and heads over to the Developmentaly Delayed class where he gets speech therapy and reenforcement. He loves going to Mrs. Robin's class and he has been learning so much! He misses nap time but his speech has improved by leaps and bounds. I can't believe he's progressing as fast as he is!

Tony has been playing guitar in the Sunday morning band for a few months now. He's amazing and I just love watching him worship on stage! It's so not his personality to be on stage but it's cute none the less. He's also decided to start leading a small group in the spring. I can't wait!

And then there's me...teaching two subjects is a lot harder than I thought it would be, but I love it! I never get bored and it makes the day go by so fast. Not to mention my Journalism students challenge me daily! I was observed last week for my semester eval and seriously, I actually had a student ask me why we didn't have an athiest's club at our school. One of the principal's was sitting there, I could feel him staring at me waiting for my response. After I started sweating like a man, I calmly explained that we probably would never have that club and if need be we would get rid of FCS to make sure of that. Boy would the liberals have loved that! I also like talking to them about politics and making them realize that the current presidency is all about race and nothing about policy. They actually dislike his ideas and policies but yet defend him because it's "not his fault". What a world...What a world....(as I melt into a green puddle of goo in the floor!)

That about wraps it up around here! Hopefully, I'll find my cord and get some pics on here soon!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Things They Say!

I was just reading through some of my favorite blogs and it gave me the idea that I should really blog about some of the conversations that happen here at the Pillstrom House!

Brady- Did you know that Polar Bears live at the North Pole and Penguins live at the South Pole? Me- No, I always thought they were friends! Brady- Nope! They've never even met!

Kaden- Hey! It's Dirty Hoes! Me- You mean dirty CLOTHES? Kaden- Yeah!

Brady- What's the difference in a hippie and a homo? Me(shocked)- Well, a hippie is someone who hates war and wants peace. A homo is like when a boy wants to marry a boy. Brady to me (I was dressed as a hippie for decade day at school) - did a great really look like a HOMO Today!

Hours later.......
Me- Brady, where did you hear about homos? Brady- iCarly. Me-Oh...did you mean hoBO not hoMO? Brady- That's what I said..hoBO. So if a hobo is guy who wants to marry a guy...what's a Homo? Me- see, I thought you said homo so I told you what that was...a hoBo is a homeless person. Brady- Yeah, I was thinking you told me a weird defination!

Kaden- I want to doe to mal-mart. Me- Why? Kaden- To buy baby Tine-ta. (translation: baby China).

Brady- Everytime I buy something, it says it's made in China! Me- Maybe we should tattoo that on our baby China! Brady- That would be awesome! Can we really? Me- NO!

As we're walking on the square in Hernando....Kaden- Hey Yook! It's a big dick! Me- um...I think that's a big ST-ick! Can you say sssssss-tick? Kaden- mo! (no)

Brady- That sounded like a lie! Me- No, it's hyperbole. Do you know what that is? Brady- No! Me- It's when you exaggerate. Like when you say you caught a really big fish...but you really caught a little fish. That's hyperbole. Brady- Can you just stop talking? I need to poop! ...walks off...

I'm sure I could spend the next week writing the things they say...And I will continue as they say them. But for now...enjoy! And feel free to post the funny things your kids have said!

Sunday, September 06, 2009

The Second First Day and Some Really Groovy Cats!

The past two weeks have seen a lot of changes around the Pillstrom household! For starters, my sweet (haha) little baby boy finally started big school! He has been so jealous of his big brother for the past two years. Everytime brother would get on the bus this year he would talk about how he wanted to go to school! And two Mondays ago...his day finally came!

Tony left before we were ready so Brady had to take the first day of school pic! But here's Kaden on his big day acting all cool. He's got this new non smiling face and he refuses to smile!

Even when we got to school, I couldn't get him to smile for the camera! However, he smiled the whole way there AND the entire day! On the way to school, he kept yelling, "I'M A ROCK STAR, BABY!"

Basically, our school has a child care program that the kids take as a class. Most of the tinies are teacher's kids. This is Kaden's cubby. This is also where the kids sit in "time out" but luckily, Kaden hasn't experienced that yet!

Friday was Kaden's first day to miss school. He had been coughing with a runny nose for a few days. I thought it was just an ear infection until about 3am Friday morning. I woke up and he was in the bed with me. He was burning up! I took his temp and it was 102. So, we stayed home and went to the doctor. By the time we got to the doctor, his temp was 104. I almost freaked! The doctor checked his ears and they were fine! (That never happens btw!) So, he wanted to test him for strep and flu. "I have good news and bad news," said the doctor! (I was hoping it was strep, which I know is a crazy thing to wish for!) The good news was, it's not strep. The bad news was that it WAS Type A flu. If you are not sure what that is, I'll tell you! It's the stage right before h1n1! Yes, that's exactly what I just said. So, we have been on house arrest since Friday!

What do you do when your kids are stir crazy from being in the house all weekend? make tie-dyed shirts of course. Brady got a kit for his birthday, so that's what we did last night!

This is no simple process. First we soaked the shirts in something. Then we added the rubberbands and dye. Then we had to let them sit in plastic bags over night. This morning we rinsed and hung them out to dry. Then we needed to wash them. So, that's what step we are on right now! They are in the washer. Next they will be dried AND then they can be worn!
I will take some pics of the boys in their shirts for all to see!

Monday, August 31, 2009

What Season Is This?

I'm sitting in the drive way watching the boys ride their bikes. I'm loving this weather we're having. I'm not sure the temp right now...but I'm thinking it's some where in the 70's or maybe even the 80's! But there's a nice breeze and it feels amazing! I can't believe it's this amazing! I'll love it for as long as it lasts. You know it will be balmy and hot in December.

I'm still on the healthy kick and this week I lost another two lbs. This brings me up a whopping 15lbs total! I can't believe I've lost that much weight! Today, one of the English teachers refered to me as "Skinny Minnie" when she was talking to me! I'm pretty sure no one has ever called me that! I'll take a picture this weekend for an update!

Other than that, not a whole lot is going on in the world of Pillstrom's!

Friday, August 21, 2009

So, apparently between teaching 5 days a week, writing very detailed lesson plans, working out, and just trying to rest...I really haven't made the time to blog latily! So let me get you all up to date.

Two weeks of school down and things are still going relatively smoothly. I love my journalism class. I applied for a grant today to buy the newspaper staff a digital camera. Some of the kids in there have great writing skills while others have brilliant minds! I have opinions that range the entire spectrim and these kids amaze me the entire 94 minutes we are together everyday! My freshmen...well...I'm still trying to learn to love them! It's the same every year and eventually we will find a happy medium and I will totally adore them. But it seems this age is when they start rebeling against authority and sometimes they don't realize it only hurts them in the long run! We'll bond eventually.

Brady is loving 2nd grade. He seems to complete his work very early everyday and his teachers are struggling to keep up with his pace. So, they let him help a boy with a broken leg who is in a wheel chair. He loves this job! He thinks he's so important! I'm glad he loves helping people.

Kaden starts pre-k on Monday! He is so excited to go to "big tool!" I'm excited because his big school is in the same building as my school! He will get to ride with me everyday and I can peek in the window sometimes and watch him learn!

So, incase you don't follow me on Facebook...I have been on a crazy mission to lose weigh and get healthy! I've lost a total of 13 lbs. Until today, I didn't realize it's so noticable. I was practicing making slide shows on the windows software I was unaware I owned...and I put these two pictures in the slide show. The one in the orange shirt is from June when I was on vacation in Texas. The gray shirt was two weeks ago on the first day of school. OMG! I can't even explain...just take a look.

I mean seriously! I thought I was just slimming a little bit! But I can really see it! This is totally motivating me to keep it up! There's nothing more that I would love to do than come home everyday and take a nap. But these pictures are such an encouragement for me to keep going! I can't wait to see me in another month! Hopefully, it will be before then when I next post!

Until then, peep out!

Monday, August 03, 2009

the First Day!

Despite my objections...the first day for teachers has finally arrived! I can't believe summer break ended so quickly! It seems like I didn't get as much done as I had intended! Oh well...right!
So, today went as well as expected! We all went to bed last night around 9:30. That's early compaired to the rest of the summer! At about 11pm, I woke up with a terrible cough! Really? Me? I have to get some sleep here! And then it was on! My throat was killing me all night! It's that sinus thing that keeps you from sleeping because everytime you breath it hurts! Not just that, all that goop is sitting right there and you can't swallow! So, every hour on the hour, I was awake coughing and getting something to drink! And you know has only gotten worse as the day went on! I seriously could have come home and went to bed if it weren't for the fear of choking the whole time! So, here I sit, my Route 44 full of ice (thanks hubby!) watching Spongebob! Thinking that there must be something in the cabinet that will not only knock me out for the night but dry up this yuck before morning too!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

On My Way now that my pitty party is over, I'm proud to announce that I lost 5 lbs this week! I was really shocked because I usually don't lose that much at one time! But it happened! I was so nervous to step on the scale this morning! After logging all of my food AND all of my calories burned for the week, I was feeling really good about the scale! But as I am fully aware about myself, usually it's not a great outcome! So, I was praying for at least one pound. I would have been thrilled for two! But five? It was awesome!

My plan for this next week is this, Keep doing what I did this past week! I don't expect to lose another 5lbs, but I do expect to keep seeing results as long as I keep working!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Diary of a Mad Fat Woman

My entire life I have struggled with my weigh! Even when I was super thin, I always thought I was fat! And now after really being over weight for nearly three years, I'm finally mad about it! Not so much mad at the fat, but mad at myself for being this way!

I have always been a very active person! I took dance from age 2- when I taught it in college. While in college, I worked out and even taught aerobics. I was probably in my best shape in college because I also participated in pageants where you had to wear a swimsuit! Tony and I met at the gym in kickboxing class. And now, we go to the gym often, sometimes too often! But this week something in my head clicked and I realized that I am turning to someone who lets the size of their body dictate their life!

I really hope this doesn't offend it's just that I got so mad at myself this week I needed to get it all out!

Here's what happened. I went to the gym on Sunday and did an hour of cardio. Monday came around and my neighbor and I went walking. Two days down...looks good! Tuesday, I go to the gym for 30 min of cardio and 45 min of kickboxing. The entire class I kept hearing myself make excuses in my head. You know how the people do the first couple of weeks on "The Biggest Loser"? Every time the trainers tell them to do something that requires hard work they have some kind of excuse. Hurt knee, old ball injury, too get the picture! I just kept waiting for the instructor to notice that I was slacking so that I could give this lame excuse I made in my head on why I couldn't run as fast as everyone else. I seriously heard my inner voice practicing how I planned to say, "I can't really do this because I had a broken foot last year." Really? I was using an old injury that wasn't even bothering me to not work out as hard as I really could? And then I just got mad!

And then it happened...or didn't! She never said anything about me and i never got to give the lame excuse I had planned. It was amazing! I actually had to suck it up and actually do the work!

This week Tony and I signed up on this website. It's called It is kind of like Weight Watchers but instead of counting points, it actually keeps your calories that you eat and that you burn! It sets weekly goals that are achievable. And it's really cool because we have both gotten into keeping track of each other! I'm sure this will fade like all of my good intentions...See the blog below. But for now, I'm working hard to no longer be a Mad Fat Woman. And instead be a healthy one!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Before school let out for the summer, I had great intentions to make some improvements in my life. One of those included home improvements! I had a pretty long list that would have kept anyone busy the entire time off. I wanted to restain my cabinets, tile around the bath tub, clean the carpets, and clean out everyone's room. Well, as good as my intentions were, I found that the majority of my time was spent at school working with the dance team. About three weeks ago, I started praying that God would show me what in my life needed to stay and what HAD to go. I love how God works because when you will receive! Even if it's not the way you hoped!

I tell you this to say when God cleaned out my schedule...he REALLY CLEANED out my schedule! I quit teachinng aerobics two weeks ago and last week, I stopped sponsoring the dance team. (That's another story for another day!)

Since God was getting the "clutter" out of my life, I felt it was time to get the CLUTTER out of my house! On Monday, Amber and I took on cleaning Brady's room. After we finished we remember we didn't take a before or after pic.

So, last night, I took these of Kaden's room.

Now please don't think I let him live like that always. I try to clean his room every couple of weeks, I'm not going to lie! But what's different this time is that I actually filled 2 1/2 trash bags to throw away and three boxes for the yard sale. I condensed his toy box shelf down to two plastic bins to put under the bed. And I moved his bed to fill in the space that always seemed to be the catch all.
So, this is what it looks like now!

I'm super proud of this project because I did it by my self! Amber has been sick the past two days which forced me to let go of things I wouldn't normally let go of! It was very theraputic! He loves his "new" room. That's one thing about my kids....they mess up their rooms and never play in them. I have seen Brady since Monday because he loves being in his clean room. Kaden is playing cars in his room as I type and I'm thinking he loves it too!