Tuesday, April 7, 2009

And the winner is...

Boy...March Madness was ugly for us this year. I don't know how gamblers do it.
All of our winning picks were out early in the tournament. Jake's team (Memphis was out early and he was DEV-ES-STATE-TED. But we reassured him that didn't mean he'd lose because then it was down to the person who had the most points.

This year...the winner was...Super Cooper. He had 100/192 points! Good for him. He gets the celebratory ice cream of his choosing sometime soon. I'm sure he won't let us forget ;)

Karcyn was 2nd with 93/192.
Jake was 3rd with 75/192.
Jared was 4th with 69/192. And I find some comfort in 5th place knowing I was only TWO points behind Jared.
I brought up the rear as usual with 67/192.

What's really fun is that we've had a different winner the past 3 years. Maybe Calvin will join us next year.

It's another GIRL!

Ha! Ha! Made you look!!

This girl is of the feline variety. We adopted her on March 30th and happily welcome her into our home.

Meet Madras.

Yes, Madras. We didn't name her and I'm actually glad she already came with a name. I wasn't wanting to duke it out with the kids on the matter. Karcyn calls her Madi for short. She is a medium haired domestic kitty. And PURR-FECT for our family. We saw her, but were drawn to some other kitties first. Fortunately the volunteer that does the adoptions knew the cats VERY well and I think Madras was made for us. Personally, I wanted a younger, smaller kitten (she's 8 months old) and one that was short haired. But I told Jared, "She'll probably be a lot like our house. She's not what I expected but I'm sure I'll love her."

How 'bout that squirrel tail?

She is THE best kitten. She's still playful with kitty toys and when we hear her meow, which isn't much, it's still that high pitched kitten meow. And she is an ANGEL with our kids. She puts up with everything. A real trooper. Nothing seems to bother her. She doesn't like Karcyn chasing her (and Karcyn has the advantage there since Madras can't get any grip on our hard floors) but she just runs off. She doesn't swipe, she doesn't meow, she doesn't bite or hiss. If you have a lap, she'll sit on it. Actually, she'll sit anywhere, on your face, chest, whatever she can get to. She is so laid back and sweet. You may notice in the picture below that Karcyn has a grip on one of the cat's hind legs. Does Madras care? Not one bit. We made Karcyn stop of course. She's learning to be soft and gentle. Overall, I think Karcyn's doing pretty good with the transition. Madras is a dream in that regard. Calvin just loves having another someone on all fours like him. Jake and Cooper love her as well. She seems like a natural fit for us.

Madras sleeps with Cooper on the bottom bunk or with us or under the crib. One night Karcyn was having trouble sleeping. So we took Madras in and put her on Karcyn's bed. Karcyn wrapped her arms around Madras and we didn't hear her after that. A little while later, Madras emerged and Karcyn was sound asleep. It really doesn't get much better than that!

Oh and in case you're wondering, my mom told me that madras is a type of Indian fabric or material. That was news to me. So I googled it. Then I saw several links for Madras, Oregon. DUH! It's in central Oregon but how many times have I seen the temperature for Madras listed above Bend on the weather map? Um, lots. I'm willing to bet that's how Madras got her name.

The Calvinator

So who do YOU think he looks like?? We can't decide over here at the Hough household.

Karcyn Turns 3

Actually, Karcyn turned 3...almost a month ago! I was hoping to post her birthday stuff before the end of March, but it just didn't happen.

So, lest I look like a real baaaad mom, here are some pictures of the not-so-big-event. That night was also Jake's spring music concert at school. Which Karcyn slept through entirely. The only chance we had for opening gifts was after the concert. That's why she looks groggy and her hair is all matted around her head in curls...from the sleeping sweat. On a side note, I've got to figure out how to get her hair to curl like that, without the sweat. I've tried getting it wet/damp with water and other spritzers, but there's something magical about sweating, then moving your head all over the place to create curls. If she wasn't so grumpy after falling asleep like that I'd love the curls even more!

The past few months, Karcyn has shown a real interest in puzzles and she's really good at them. She LOVES this fishy puzzle with the magnetic pole.

It was the birthday of cupcakes this year. Easy-peasy and quick in a time crunch. Besides, Karcyn didn't know they weren't homemade :)

See? YUM!

Karcyn is getting more and more personality by the day. She's extremely outgoing and full of love for everyone she meets. If she doesn't want to do something though, she folds her arms, scowls and says no. Although when we start counting, by 2 she's usually doing what we asked her to. She does get sent to time out but it's usually for her unnecessary screeching. And she stays until we call her out, which is sometimes a lot longer than we mean for it to be because we forget she's there. (Whoops).

Karcyn loves Cinderella. She's only watched it these past couple weeks and has several large parts memorized from Cinderella to the mice to the wicked step mother. Including the tones and actions. It is hilarious to watch, especially because her speech is still garbled.

Something funny and sometimes annoying is that Karcyn will out of the blue say "Hi Maw-ee" and if I say "Hi" back to her, she keeps right on saying it. The secret is to say "Hi Karcyn" back to her, I've discovered. And if you don't...she won't stop. She runs up to visitors at the house or that we meet whose names she doesn't know and says, "Hi. Hi. Hi. Hi." After 5 times or so, I tell the guest "You have to acknowledge her to make her stop." I've never had a parrot, but I'm thinking this little quirk of hers is very parrot-ish.

One thing I love about Karcyn is that she is soooooooooooooo grateful for any little thing you do for her and she says it with zeal. If you get her a drink she says, "Oh thank oo, Daa-ee." If you help her get dressed, get her a book, help her up, move a hair away from her face, wipe her bum, get her seat belt on, it's all exclaimed with "Oh thank oo!" I hope she never loses that grateful heart. It will take her many wonderful places.

The sky is falling!

Like most people, I've been bitten by the spring cleaning bug. Actually I was bitten over a month ago, but until I got the Virgin production out of the way, I couldn't devote extra time to anything but that. So, once it was over, Spring Break was upon us, and I got started. I'm still not done of course, but I am feeling a smidge better than I was before.

This morning...it was my front picture window. We love our picture window. We don't have much of a view but it's large and new and double-paned :) I'm a little...obsessive...shall we say, when it comes to keeping it clean. And with all the rain and other matter getting whipped into it, it gets dirty a lot. Not to mention the plethora of finger prints that constantly outline the bottom of it on the inside. This morning, I decided I needed to take off the screens and use my new squeegee to see how well it worked.

I guess I wasn't the only one trying to get stuff done. It was a beautiful sunny morning and the neighborhood mower-guy was out cutting the community grass that goes along the path directly across the street from our house and further east to the playground. I actually wanted to do the windows with the morning sun shining through my front window because it helps me see what I missed when I clean it. The sun is a great proof-cleaner!

My picture window is in thirds, albeit not equal parts. We've got the large main window in the middle that is stationery. Then we have two "smaller" windows that flank both sides. They are sliders and are the ones with the screens on them to keep those pesky bugs out. I started with the big window. I cleaned it inside and out. The squeegee worked really well...hardly any streaks that the paper towel and window-cleaning cloth both leave behind. It was looking almost as clean as the day it was put in when I moved on to the first screened window. Looking at my house, it's the slider to the left. I cleaned it on the inside and then on the outside.

As I was inspecting my work and almost ready to put the screen back on, something WHACKED my window right above me, SMACKED me right on top of my head and then ricocheted onto the patio. I screamed of course, jumping back from the unexpected and frantically brushed the top of my recently showered hair hoping to rid it of any foreign debris. What the heck?? I heard the mower-guy right behind me. He was directly across the street. Maybe he inadvertently launched something at me with the mower blades. I turned to look at him. He had headphones on. But he was looking at me. Probably wondering what my problem was as I was screaming and doing the jig.

And then I saw the feathers fluttering to the ground. There, on the other side of my stool, lay a bird...although he was no crow, he was a decent sized thing for falling out of the sky and using my head to do it. Eck. The bird was still moving when I saw him on the ground. I, however, didn't care to stick around the scene to see if more birds were going to make an appearance. I had the major willies and darted inside to make sure there were no bird parts of any kind stuck in my hair.

Tweety was dead when I got back a minute later. It was apparent where he hit my FRESHLY CLEANED picture window too. It was kind of hard not to notice. It was the round smudge about 5 inches above where I stood surrounded by little feathers.

I still can't figure out what happened. I suppose it's probably silly to suspect the mower-guy. Though maybe the bird was in the grass and it scared him and like my daughter ran, I mean flew, into the window because he wasn't watching where he was going. Or...maybe Windex really does work with its streak-free shine that even the birds can't tell a difference.

Here is Tweety at his untimely death.