Monthly Archives: February 2015

the funny power story

I feel a little bit guilty writing this post since so many people we know are without power, but it was such a source of entertainment today that I had to share.

So, we sleep with a white noise machine in the master bedroom. The one we have had for years bit the dust a few weeks ago so we are now using a back up one that was once in the guest room. The power flickered on and off many times last night, and each time the sounds of birds and waterfalls replaced our regular white noise. This morning Rahul asked why he woke up to birds singing in our bedroom. Bahaha. It was so confusing. At first I tried to ignore the strange rainforest sound, then I tried to figure out where it was coming from. Once I was awake enough to know that we were not actually in a rainforest, I switched it back to white noise. This pattern was repeated at least 3 times.


Then there was my nightmare. I am not surprised because we watched Oculus last night…super strange, scary movie.

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In my nightmare, Rahul tries to get me to ingest this liquid that will make my stomach dissolve. I keep saying I don’t want to, but he convinces me. Sigh. Maybe no more horror movies for a while.

For tonight, here is hoping for no sounds of the rainforest 😉


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the big snow

So the forecast was anywhere from 1-12 inches of snow…kinda of a big range, huh? Smooch was ready for the snow with her fancy sweater, but like the rest of us not looking forward to it.

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We woke up to 5-6 inches and this folks was PERFECT snowman making snow! I think it is the biggest snow sculpture we have ever made. Check it out…. our snow bunny!

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Here 2 of my other favorite pics from today….cannot wait to create more things tomorrow!

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the unexpected snow

When I woke up this morning, there were several emails in my inbox from CFS parents trying to find out if we were also on a school delay….a delay??? Yep, it snowed AGAIN. The snow actually started early morning and was coming down hard when Rahul had to leave for his morning commute to work. He slid and almost rear ended a car in front of him, so he turned around and came back home for my car. As the snow kept falling, schools changed from a 2 hour delay to closed. It snowed for almost 5 hours.

Obviously we were not prepared for this storm and did not have enough groceries for dinner or breakfast tomorrow morning. Not a problem when you live on Wild Azalea Lane! Samantha and I bundled up and hiked to the grocery store that according to Siri is an 11 min walk from our house. It was a little slower for us in the snow, but not a bad walk at all.We grabbed what we needed and hitched a ride home from a friend that we ran into at the store. (Aidan opted to stay at home and play his newly discovered instrument the cello!).

It is 3:30pm and the snow is falling again. Oh and we have another storm coming in tomorrow night. I guess this means no school or work again for the rest of the week….sigh. For now the house is quiet and I am reading All The Light We Cannot See with a cup of coffee… no Starbucks for me this afternoon 😦

Here are some snow pics – enjoy! Kristan

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the loft transformation

Samantha has declared for years that she plans on living with us forever. The latest plan to make this happen is to move into the workshop and attend UNC Chapel Hill for college. In an effort to jump start this independence, Samantha and her friend Ila transformed the loft into their new secret hideaway they have named S&I.

This transformation was actually a good idea since I have been throwing junk and other stuff that does not need to be up there in this area for the past 5 years. After the clean out, we added some old carpet scraps, an air mattress, and the girls set to work to make it “their space.”

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Another to do list item was checked off as a result of the loft transformation: adding the workshop to our home security system. We have a keyless remote already and have ordered a door and glass break sensor. This way the workshop is connected to our home for security purposes, but the girls can turn off the alarm without coming all the way inside.

I know that eventually the girls will not dream of living in our back yard, but for now I am going to just go with it and enjoy it as long as I can.


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more like it….

The kids enjoyed sledding on the packed ice today, but the real fun came later in the afternoon….


It lasted less than an hour, but it was awesome. All schools closed again tomorrow, but our kiddos were scheduled to be out already for parent teacher conferences. The temps are dropping in a BIG way tonight, lows below zero and highs only in the teens. We have the tub filled with water, tons of firewood and faucets dripping hot water.

Fingers crossed we can get a warm up soon…. it was starting to feel a little bit like The Shining at our house today.

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snow…..well, not really

I was really worried about my after school program yesterday since we were supposed to get snow starting in the afternoon and my program is in Wake Forest (read: almost an hour from our house). Thankfully all after school activities everywhere were cancelled, so we just waited for the snow. But it was not really snow. It was sleet and freezing rain. The worst for North Carolina, the land of no road plowing. Rahul had to go to work this morning, but the rest of us were home. Samantha was determined to make the most of the ice.

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After lunch we decided to hike it on foot to Highland Forest to sled. Getting there on foot was a bit of an adventure but we did it. Aidan was convinced we were going to get arrested for walking in people’s back yards. But we stumbled on this small pond that I think would be great in our front woods. For folks that do not know, I have had a pond/lake obsession for quite a while now. Check out this idea…


And now for the token sledding pic.

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We are supposed to get real snow (very little accumulation) tomorrow, but the real weather event for our area is Thursday. Highs in the teens, lows below freezing. Folks, that does not happen in North Carolina. I am getting the heat lamp out for the chickens and more firewood for the humans/cats and dog. My guess is that our week is done in terms of work and school.

But, don’t feel super sad for us. We are watching yet another bucket list family movie….tonight’s pick: Naked Gun. So much inappropriate humor…cannot help but laugh along with the kids 😉


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time to get back on track (warning… long post)

Getting shingles in my early 40s made me think about what was going on in my life. Don’t get me wrong, there are so many positive things in my life, but I started to reflect on the last 12 mos to see if there were any new stressors that could have triggered shingles at such a young age.

My first thought was on the intervention my brother and I did with my mom last spring. We found her barely able to breathe in her condo surrounded by trash. We made her go to the hospital, and I called Adult Protective Services. For that she vowed to never speak to me again. She went to the hospital on a Friday and the doctor said she would have been dead by Sunday if she had not come in for oxygen treatment. I know I did the right thing, but I also know that she is an adult that has to want to change her behavior to get better. My job is to be present for my husband and children, that is what I have to focus on.

Another stressor: Samantha and school last year. I observed, went to conference after conference watching her get further and further behind in math. To see her leave second grade above grade level in math and then not even score proficient on the EOGs at the end of third grade broke my heart. We did Sylvan tutoring to get her back on track, but that plus Carolina Friends’ tuition for 2 kids was hard on the budget….which led to the additional stressor of trying to work more while developing a non profit organization which I believe in wholeheartedly. This stressor has worked itself out, as I have been able to generate enough income to cover one kiddo’s tuition for the year (the goal), but getting there and exploring additional part time work was not for the faint of heart.

Then came probably the biggest stressor of all…. the end of Samantha’s quest to become Catholic. I do not want to go into detail here, but we experienced some serious family judgement and fundamentalism. This stressor led to the idea of moving, which became a stressor within a stressor. The idea of leaving the only real home I have known as an adult was really hard, but I seriously considered it because of the situation.

So how does all this complaining (sorry) lead to getting back on track? When I am stressed, I gravitate to foods which are not good for me (i.e., food cravings). Cravings. Ever find yourself uncontrollably eating a box of Wheat Thins or reaching for a third slice of buttered toast? Ironically, the foods you’re most reactive to are the ones you crave most. According to Dr. Daniel Kalish, your body reacts to intolerant foods by creating addictive narcotics called opioid endorphins. Like a drug, you have a feeling of euphoria when you eat these foods, and subsequently crave them.

I have felt so sluggish lately, pants fitting snugger, etc. And then I remember this picture when I was taking good care of myself in terms of what I ate…


I need to get back to this place. Not because I want to be fit (that is a nice bonus) but I need to figure out a way to reduce the stressors and eat in a more clean way. Ironically, when I have a clean eating life, I am less stressed.

Wish me luck!


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