Wednesday, November 3, 2010

October in Pictures

October has been a busy month for the Green household. First, October contains a holiday that ranks close to the top among favorite holidays in our family. Second, pumpkins start showing up in grocery stores and along roadsides in this month, igniting the imagination for new carving creations. Fall festivals to attend, Trunk or Treat events to participate in, and a craft fair opportunity for Sharla, and the month is full and spilling over. So here is a look back over the month in pictures, with a few comments along the way.

Pre-October preparations for pumkin carving coming soon.

Pumpkin minion, in honor of Despicable Me

Halloween costumes this year:

Rat-A-Pult game at church trunk-or-treat festival

Tuell zombie

Monday, August 30, 2010

Adventures of Possum Man

This adventure happened back on my birthday on the 22nd, but it took me quite a while to put the video together. Thanks to Sharla for getting the video uploaded to my blog. You're awesome! (For unknown reasons, the video sometimes gets stuck. Just move the radio button a little bit, or move the page up and down a little, and it should continue playing.)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Stain removal

Took the afternoon off from work on Friday and joined all my girls on an afternoon at the movies to see Despicable Me. It was a funny movie - actually better than I expected after hearing mediocre reviews from some who had seen it before.

Afterward Sharla noticed a spot on the front of my shirt, and we decided it was a butter stain from the buttery popcorn we ate during the movie.

That shirt was new - I had only worn it a couple times - so I was bummed.

Sharla did a quick search on the Internet and found that we could remove butter stains by rubbing dishwasher liquid on it before laundering it.

I went downstairs, opened up the cabinet and got out the dishwasher detergent.

Poured a little on the stain, and started rubbing it in.

The stain disappeared immediately.

Then the spot turned pink.

The dishwasher detergent was white - something was wrong.

I looked at the ingredients on the bottle of detergent, and saw in bold print, "Chlorine bleach." Aaaaack!

I was supposed to use dishwasher liquid soap, not dishwasher detergent. Oops.

I'm glad we buy almost all my shirts on sale, so it wasn't a big loss. But what was I going to do with a pretty blue shirt with a pink spot in the middle of the front?

How to make lemonade out of lemons?

I got a bucket, poured in more bleach, and dunked the whole shirt in the bleach. Gradually the entire shirt turned a nice, girly salmon color.

I can't say I have another shirt that color. Actually, I've never even seen a shirt that color. It's definitely unique.

I won't be wearing it out of the house...

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Front porch makeover

Here are some before and after pictures of my latest home-improvement project. Sharla's dad helped me pour some concrete in front of our front door last year to make a larger front porch, and I had intended to lay porcelain tile over it. Unfortunately, I never got around to it until now. I laid out the tiles, rented a tile saw from Home Depot and cut all the tiles over the Memorial Day weekend. By the way, that tile saw was awesome! It's fun cutting through rock with metal! I laid the tiles on Monday evening and Wednesday evening, and finally added the grout on Saturday morning. It was a lot of tedius work - more work than I thought it would be, but it also wasn't as difficult as I thought. And now I know what I'm doing if we ever decide to lay some tile inside the house. Outside was a good place to try it for the first time.

This picture is the only one I could find that partially shows the original porch with the L-shaped sidewalk. This picture is a re-enactment of the fall Sharla and Melaina took that motivated us to fill in around the sidewalk with concrete.

Here is what the porch looked like after filling in around the sidewalk. It looked about like this for about a year! :-(

Laying the grout. Not difficult, but very tedious. And it was really hot, even though I started at 8am Saturday morning (finished at 11am).

The finished product.

Monday, May 3, 2010

The makings of daredevils

It is amazing what you can convince little kids to try when you do it first, then give them a little positive encouragement. I don't think Livian or Avalie would have tried this on their own, but they decided it was really fun after trying it a few times. Livian, our cautious child, was never willing to go as high as Avalie, but we know Avalie seems to have no fear, so that was expected. Mom, just to appease your concerns - no grandchildren were harmed (permanently) in the making of these video!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A thump in the night

Thump, thump, thump...

What's that noise?

It sounds like it's coming from the attic.

Go up and see what it is - I'll never be able to fall asleep with that thumping.

(time passes)

There is something stuck in one of the roof turbines.

Go poke it with a stick.

(time passes)

I poked it. It was a dead bird that got caught in the turbine and decapitated.

Lovely. So glad you shared.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Daddy, can you help me ...

Livian was in her element again this afternoon, and it nearly drove me crazy. Livian is so creative; she is always thinking of these elaborate projects that she just has to work on immediately, and once she gets the idea in her head, there is no stopping her. The problem with this is that her projects almost always require help from me or Sharla, and a lot of the time her ideas are so “out there” that we don’t want to encourage her by participating (feeding the obsession). A lot of times when Livian asks me for help with one of her projects, I kind of say yes, but then don’t really get around to helping much, even though Livian keeps asking and asking, and I end up feeling like a loser dad. So today when it started happening again, I tried my best to keep up with her, and still keep my sanity.

It started as soon as we got home from church after lunch. Sharla was at a baby shower, so I was left with no backup support. Livian and I had been working on making a model horse for part of her book report at school, and it was time to finish putting on the legs and ears and start painting. We used some green foam that people use to soak in water and put their flowers in, so we needed to spray paint it white. It’s an Appaloosa horse, whatever that means, and apparently those aren’t green! I assumed this would be our afternoon project. After several attempts to glue on the body parts and make them stay, we went outside and got the first coat of paint on. We set the horse down to dry for 45 minutes, and I thought I was done.

However, Livian’s imagination took the available opportunity to keep the craft projects going. Within a few minutes she and the boy next door came over asking if I would cut some wood for them to use to make a “birdhouse mansion” for them. And they needed my help right then! The boy’s dad said he’d give them the wood, but he wasn’t cutting it for them, and he wouldn’t allow them to do any cutting on their own. Smart man! Pass the bulk of the project off to the other dad!  I used one of my best comebacks in an attempt to avoid getting sucked in to another of Livian’s hair brained ideas – a stalling technique. I told them to draw it out on paper first so I’d understand what they were trying to make. They readily agreed, and hurried off to get paper and pencils. Phew! I figured that should last 20-30 minutes, and then it would be time to get back to the horse painting. Boy was I wrong! About 3 minutes later, I heard, “Dad, we’re ready!” They had drawn up a complete floor plan of this bird mansion in a matter of minutes! It involved six rooms, including an entrance, a bird bath, a feeding room, a nesting room, a bedroom, and an extra room for storing stuff. And they needed my help right then!

At this point I decided if I can’t beat them, I’d better join them, but on my terms. So I found some wooden projects that the girls had made at some past Home Depot Kids Workshop events, and told the kids they should use the wood from these projects to make their birdhouse, instead of cutting new wood. They agreed without much protest, and I ended up only having to make 4 small cuts! However, I still had to be involved in much of the project because it involved gluing the pieces together and then clamping them together while the glue dried. During this entire process we kept checking the paint on the horse and making touch ups, which was a never ending job because every time we touched the horse a clump of paint would pull off of the model, requiring another touch up. While the glue was drying on the new 3-story birdhouse, Livian got several kids from the neighborhood to join her in making a movie! She was going to be the director, and she needed my help to change the batteries in her video camera. And she needed my help right then! At this point I had to admit defeat. I tried my best to keep up, and I had failed. I pointed out to Livian that she was now on her third project, and I couldn’t keep up with her, and she needed to give me a break! She felt bad, and said ok, and proceeded to work on changing the batteries on her own.

It’s her bedtime now, and she just asked if I will download her video clips to our computer so she can edit them and piece them together into the movie. Yes, Livian, that’s exactly what I had in mind for how I wanted to spend the last few minutes of my evening!