Sunday, August 31, 2008


That's right. I said pissed. And I am. Be aware that this post may not be for children under 13 or people who don't like the word pissed. And to those people I say 'my language has never been clean since you've known me. Deal with it.'

I am so pissed. Last night I was scared and now I am angry. Just. Plain. Angry. We have made some awesome friends in our new neighbors Ben and Angie. I seriously think they are two of the nicest people on the planet. So kind. They have a darling little boy that my kids just can't get enough of and are expecting a new baby this week via scheduled induction. Last night their home was broken into by some low life pieces of crap that I wouldn't classify as people. They came into their home through a window on the main floor - that window faces a fenced in backyard. They took a laptop, a wallet, a safe and went through all of their personal things. Thank GOd no one was hurt. They called a little after 11:30 pm and I could barely process what they were telling me. No one ever thinks this will happen to them or people they know.

I am a lot of things, but I am not an idiot. I know that where we live isn't Pleasantville and never has been, but apparently I had a major false sense of security going on. We have had our share of car break-ins (just a month ago these very same neighbors and a few others had their cars broken into and their iPod stolen) and garage break-ins. But to my knowledge (and I use that term loosely), there hasn't been much in the way of home invasions. That all changed last night when it hit this close to home. I guess it was only a matter of time before the theives got braver here. Cars and garages weren't enough. Now they're coming into our houses. This isn't the place I moved into some eight years ago. So much has changed and it isn't good. I know this type of thing can happen anywhere, but it didn't just happen anywhere. It happened right in my own backyard to people I know and care about. And it makes me so mad.

I am just MAD for so many reasons - that bad things happen to really good people, that this is the turn our neighborhood has taken, that there doesn't seem to be much I can do about it. Most likely these thugs were waiting and watching for their chance. And they took it. My theory is that it is someone who lives around us because they keep hitting this same area. They're paying attention and knew just when to do their dirty work. Needless to say my anger turned into action. We are making some changes around our house today to better protect us from this type of crime. I hope they catch whoever is doing this, because it surely isn't the first time they've done it and I'm sure it won't be the last. If you're reading this and you live in my hood, lock up your stuff!!!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Music of da week!!!

You know it's been an interesting week when I haven't posted in this long!!! We've got some odd viral illness going on here now - high fevers and the like. Most likely contracted while visiting our local walk in care last week! That's what I love about doctor's offices! If you weren't sick when you went in, you will be when you leave!!

Friday homeschooling is pretty light, so we're already done for the day and I thought I'd post some music! My good friend Sara (aka OddDotty) was here for our homeschool BBQ last Saturday and made mention of Brandi Carlile. When I first heard of her last year, I thought she must be some distant relative of the ever popular Belinda Carlisle. But the spelling is different and her music is so much different!!! If you don't think you've heard her music, chances are you have and you just didn't know it.....


Brandi was born in 1981 (OMG, so young!!!) in Washington state. At the ripe old age of 15, she started playing the guitar and writing songs. At 16, she became a backup singer for an Elvis impersonator. Before signing to a major record label, Carlile with her twin brothers Tim and Phil Hanseroth, performed in local Seattle bars like The Crocodile, Tractor Tavern, and Queen's Paragon. Once Dave Matthews heard her perform at the 2003 Sasquatch Music Fest, she began to get the attention of the music industry and many others!!


Columbia Records signed Carlile in late 2004 based on the strength of her home recordings. Her 2005 major label debut, 'Brandi Carlile' included some of the home recorded songs and also some newly recorded tracks. Here are a couple of songs from the debut album....

What Can I Say..... no words for how cool this song is...

Throw It All Away.....

Fall Apart Again - I think this might be my fave song of hers


Her second Columbia album, 'The Story', was released in April 2007. It is a crazy good album!!! It's basically indie type folk music and almost borders on country. I do NOT like country music, so if you don't either PLEASE don't let that discourage you from getting this album. Her voice just blew me away when I first heard her songs. It has such depth and reality to it. It crackles and is rough around the edges. said 'think of Patsy Cline performing Radiohead songs.' That is exactly how I would describe it!! I first heard her on, you guessed it.... Grey's Anatomy! It's only one of my fave shows ever. Obviously because of the scandalous storylines and flawed characters, but also because of all the great music they play on the show!! Thank you Grey's for opening up a whole new world of music for so many people!!

They've featured three of her songs: "Tragedy," "What Can I Say," and "Throw It All Away". In April 2007, they put out a version of the video for the single 'The Story' with footage from the show. In May of 2007, a special two-hour episode of the show featured Carlile's song "Turpentine" during footage of the Grey's Anatomy spin-off, Private Practice.

Most recently, Carlile's song "The Story" has been featured in a GM commercial aired during the Beijing Olympic Games. So, if you watched the Olympics you have heard Brandi Carlile!!! If you liked what you heard, please check out some of my other favorite songs from 'The Story'.....

The Story - amazing love song about life, knowing someone so well and loving them anyways....

Late Morning Lullaby - LOVE it!

Wasted - sorry about the dumb, amateur vid for this....just listen to the song!!!

Have You Ever - so beautiful.... awesome song about the question 'why?' Abby sings this at the top of her lungs when it's on!

I look forward to another great album from Brandi and would encourage everyone out there to buy anything she puts out there. Artists like her don't come around very often!!! Thank you to Sara for reminding me of Brandi and my need to blog about her amazing music!!!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Here We Go Again!!

Man, we were doing so good! With Olivia that is. She's been healthy and happy for quite awhile now!! It's been such a blessing!! But this past Monday we had to take her in to the walk in care because there was blood in her urine. No fever, but I still suspected a urinary tract infection because of the way her wet diapers had been looking for a couple of days. Not quite right. She got to drink juice in the waiting room and charmed all of the nurses with her sweet smile like she always does. Then she went wee into the little cup like a good girl. After a few minutes, a UTI was confirmed and off we went with a script for augmentin. So far, so good with that.

She's been acting pretty normal despite how uncomfortable she must feel. If you're a girl you all know how much uti's suck. This morning we had to have a recheck with her pediatrician's office. Based on what they saw with her results and the fact that she's so young, they want to run some more tests. Hooray. They want to do an ultrasound of her kidneys next week to make sure there are no abnormalities there. The doctor said that sometimes there are kidney issues in some kids that they never knew existed. Then in a few weeks, they want to do another test where they put dye in her tubes and bladder to see what's going on there. The doctor said the dreaded 'c' word - catheter. Ugh. I so hate them. And I so soo sooooooooo do not want to have to put her through that, but I guess she's been through worse and this is something we need to do.

So here we go again. This time I am not googling ANYTHING. I am not looking things up on the internet. I will not freak myself out prematurely. I will not worry without reason. Ha ha, is what you're all thinking!!! It is so hard not to worry about your kids when you're a mom. But with all that we've been through, I have realized what a worthless piece of crap 'worry' is. It doesn't do you any good. And it sure doesn't do the person you're worrying about any good. Author and motivational speaker Ed Foreman describes worry as "nothing less than the misuse of your imagination." Isn't that true? It's so easy to get caught up in the worry and spiral out of control - at least it is for me. I really envy those people who seem like they don't have a care in the world!! While I might not ever be one of those people, I am proud to say that I have come a long long way in the past few months. Anxiety is a daily battle for me and has been for awhile. Every day I wake up and every night when I lay down, I have to make the choice not to let the fear and worry of the unknown take me over. Instead, I choose faith.

It's not as easy at it sounds! Writer and mother Karol Ladd asks this question: why do we harbor and savor our worries?? Could it be that worrying is easy, but faith is difficult? Faith IS difficult, but it's not impossible. I think we could all use a little more faith, couldn't we?? Now I sound like a George Michael song, but seriously. What is faith???? Faith is the act of trusting, believing and hoping in the unknown and the unseen. Faith causes questions and seeks answers. Faith causes you to learn and grow.

So instead of worrying about what these tests will or won't say, I am going to have faith!!! I will make sure to post updates as we get results. Please lift up some positive thoughts and prayers for Olivia until then!!! And I couldn't resist posting this video........ and no that's not me singing in the background!!! And you're welcome because you're going to have this song in your head for the rest of the day now!!! Sing it loud and proud!!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


I skipped my music blog for last week. It's not that I'm having a hard time coming up with bands to put out there, I just space on what to write sometimes. So this week I am taking it down a notch and blogging about a band I have had a relationship with for quite a long time.

Jars of Clay.

I'm sure you've heard of them. They are an amazing Christian rock band that really, in my opinion, changed the entire landscape of worship music. My first experience with them was in high school when I heard the song 'Flood' on the radio. I bought the album and didn't listen to too many of the other songs on it and was a little upset because the album version of 'flood' was WAY stripped down compared to the rocking one on the radio. But, the more I listened to the album the more questions I had about God and faith. So began my journey into the music of Jars of Clay!!

I believe I own every cd they've ever come out with (including the awesome Christmas album from last season). It's hard to pick a favorite. Obviously the most well known album is their first one, but I really love listening to 'The Eleventh Hour' as well. Their music is uplifting in a way that is hard to describe. There are the usual songs of praise and worship, but the thing I love most about Jars of Clay is that they aren't afraid to write/sing about the big questions. The questions we all have and those rough places we all go through. Those times that make you ask why. I always thought being a "good Christian" meant that you followed God with unwavering faith. That you never wondered why or doubted your place or purpose in the world. It is easy to have faith when everything is going your way - but I have learned that it's in the really rotten times we're given the chance to dig deeper. A chance to be closer.

This new song by Jars of Clay is called 'Closer.' It's a super catchy, simple song. Not a ton of deep, thought provoking lyrics going on. But simple works for me and that's what I love about this particular song. Take a listen and see what you think.............

They've also reworked the popular songs 'Flood' and 'Love Song for a Savior' on this EP in a very cool way. And the other two songs, 'Safe to Land' and 'Prisoner of Hope' are just awesome. The full album is due out in the spring of '09, so this is just a taste of what's in store. If we can expect more songs like these, I know I won't be disappointed!!!

Monday, August 11, 2008


Not falling as in falling down. The season of fall and all of the fun it brings!! I will probably be working on two posts today because I didn't get the chance to blog Friday about a band. Too many things on my mind and not enough time to type them all out I guess! I just have to say that I am loving this cooler weather. I was feeling that I wasn't ready for summer to be over, but this little dose of cool weather has me excited for all of the things that fall brings!!! I am looking forward to it.

For me, fall always means baking treats. Cooler weather just makes me wanna bake! So yesterday I baked a Mexican Chocolate Cake. One of my favorite stops is this little spice shop not too far from our house. They have every kind of spice and seasoning you can imagine!! Upon entering the place, your senses are sort of overwhelmed because of all of these different scents all under one roof. But once your nose adjusts and you begin to look around, you'll find so many cool items. One thing in my spice cabinet that I cannot do without is cinnamon. It smells great and just makes everything taste better. And once you have truly good quality cinnamon, you will never buy another kind! Before getting into spices, I never even knew there were different kinds! My two favorites are the Ceylon Cinnamon and the Vietnamese Cassia.


Both have truly different and unique qualities, but are equally good depending on what you use them in. Ceylon is from Mexico and is ground from soft stick bark instead of the hard kind. It's lighter in color than other cinnamons and it's flavor is very light and delicate. It is best in sweet dishes and cakes. This is the kind I used in the chocolate cake I just made. The cassia is a little $$, but it's very strong. Since a little goes a long way in whatever you're using it for, it lasts a long time. It is amazing for homemade cinnamon rolls and coffee cakes. I especially like to put a little bit in the coffee filter with the grounds. The coffee brewing smells delicious and gives it a little extra kick!! Another one of my spice store favorites is Mexican vanilla. It is the best vanilla on the planet! My grama always uses mexican vanilla in her cookies and so did my great grama. Best cookies ever! So, spend extra on good cinnamon and vanilla!! It's worth it!!


Here is the recipe for the cake I made. I shared some with the neighbors and their little boy loved it and so did my kids!!

Mexican Chocolate Cake

2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups white sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used apple sauce instead bcuz veg oil freaks me out)
1 cup water
1/2 cup sour milk (add 1 tsp vinegar to the milk & let sit for a few minutes to make it sour)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 12x18 inch cake pan. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda and cinnamon. Add the butter, oil (or applesauce), water, sour milk, eggs and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Spread evenly into prepared pan.

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Allow to cool.

*now I didn't frost this. I just dusted it with a little powdered sugar and ceylon cinnamon. BUT. There is a glaze you can make by melting 1/2 cup chocolate chips, 1/4 cup boiling water, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1 cup powdered sugar. So there ya go! Chocolate always fixes whatever is wrong with you, so indulge and be happy!!!!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Before it's too late...

I need to post pictures of the newly organized school room. Before it gets destroyed, I need to post this blog to remember that this day actually existed. My mom would be proud! I sorted through everything and made way for our new curriculum, school supplies, etc. So, ta da!!!!! Behold. The amazing school room!

Full view of the cleanliness...

Art/play area, my table with all of my teacher manuals and supplies, our 2008 olympics bulletin board.....

The armoire is the only thing that is still a mess, but you can't see it unless you open it so who cares!!! Right????? ;)


Bookshelves that hold all the kids' curriculum for the year. Top shelf on the left holds read alouds for Core 1 and Science 1. Bottom shelf on the left holds both kids' readers. Top shelf on the right holds coloring books and Usborne Arts & Craft books. Bottom shelf on the right holds Usborne read alouds and picture books. You're impressed.


Look!!! You can see the top of the table!!!!

All the kids' workbooks and supplies on either side of the table....

Wow!!! All this was done last night and this morning. I am so proud of myself!!! The only problem was that we've run out of room for a lot of our books. They've taken up residence in the upstairs hallway for now, but plans are in the works for a built in bookcase. There is an odd little space just outside of Ab's room that would be a great place for one!! I can envision it, so now we just have to build it.



I'm thinking something white with a wainscotting back and several shelves for books and baskets of toys. It would also be nice to put in a can light over the top if possible, but my handsome electrician husband needs to spec that out.


And this past weekend we finished putting down the flooring in the middle child's room. It looks great!!!




And the hallway is completely done too!!


So, we're making progress and having fun!! Three more rooms of carpet to go and we'll be carpet and hopefully allergy free!!! I have to say, as much as I love the Novalis vinyl planking in the downstairs I was a little worried about how it would be upstairs. I really love it. It doesn't have the weird sound that laminate can have and it's soft and warm under foot. We'll be adding small area rugs to the bedrooms eventually for more warmth, but for now I love the look of all the wood!!! Well, it's back to organizing for me. I'm taking it one room and one day at a time!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Molly's Music for the Week - August 1st!

Can you believe it's August?? I can't!!! Except it sure feels like it. All this hot weather!! Well, last week I blogged about The Postal Service and this week it's on to Death Cab for Cutie. Death Cab started as a small side project for Ben Gibbard (of The Postal Service), but the release of the first album went over so well that he turned it into a full fledged band situation.


They put out a few albums under independant labels - 'You Can Play These Songs With Chords', 'Something About Airplanes', 'We Have the Facts and We're Voting Yes', 'The Photo Album' and 'Translaticism.' Tracks of 'Transatlanticism' were played on shows like The OC, Six Feet Under and CSI: Miami (seriously, how many CSI's are there???). Here are a couple of amazing tracks from 'Transatlanticism', though the entire thing is beautiful.

The New Year

The Sound of Settling

In 2004, they signed with Atlantic (to which all the people freaked out and said they were selling out) and released the album 'Plans.' I think 'Plans' is one of the best albums out there.


I came to the party late because DCFC was already a big deal to most of the moody teenage population. Oh, well. My first run in with Death Cab was in '05 while listening to Q101 upstairs while putting laundry away. 'Soul Meets Body' (from Plans) came on - I sat and listened to the lyrics and melody on the edge of the bed the whole way through. I was in love. They didn't say who the band was, so I plugged some of the lyrics into google and up came Death Cab! I went out and bought the cd the very next day and it's been one of my favorites ever since. Here is a little sample of the goodness that is Death Cab...

Soul Meets Body

I Will Follow You Into the Dark - beautiful song

Crooked Teeth - AWESOME lyrics about a relationship that was doomed from the very beginning...

Marching Bands of Manhatten

Your Heart Is An Empty Room

Okay, so the latest Death Cab album came out in May and I do not personally own it yet. I am scerrred. What if it doesn't live up to my high expectations??? People seem to like it and I have heard a couple of songs, but I have not purchased it yet. With that being said, here is the first single off the album so that you can hear it for yourselves. It's quite lovely, but I feel like the intro is WAYYYYYYY too long. From the bits and pieces I have heard of this album, it is definately a little darker. But not in a bad way!

I Will Possess Your Heart

Here are a couple of others.....

No Sunlight


But I think someone new to their stuff should start with 'Plans.' In closing, these guys are so uber talented I don't think you could go wrong with any of their albums. The lyrics are always thoughtful and they just have an overall great sound. Come on, you know you're good if you get played on The OC!

About Blogging Molly

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I am a mom to three great kids - Ethan is 12, Abby is 9 and Lulu (Olivia) is 5. I've been married to my highschool sweetheart for almost fourteen years. I love to paint, renovate and live for anything DIY. I love music and I love to bake. I also teach dance at a local studio. Thanks for stopping by my blog!!!

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