Friday, April 30, 2010

Disturbing Pictures My Son Draws- Part Two

My son has an...ummmm....signature style to his artwork lately.  He typically draws things that share the same theme-destruction, violence, flames, bullets, etc.  I don't know where this comes from-we don't allow him to watch violent movies or tv shows, and he's a sweet, well behaved 7 year old boy, so it must be an outward manifestation of the male gene.  If you missed my first posting of his artwork, please check it out here .

I'm sort of doing double duty with this post, by going along with Buried With Children's weekly Kids Make the Darndest Things meme.  Check it out for more cute, strange, and/or funny artwork!


First of all, I'd like to share this lovely piece with you all.
In case you aren't practiced in reading first grade handwriting, it says "That is the biggest flaming tower that ever fell on me."  Ouch. Quite the descriptive little writer isn't he?  This picture has a few of his classic elements, fire, bullets, bombs (or "boms"), screaming people, etc., but I love how he throws in a little humor.  The tower, which I assume is an apartment building, is listing to the right, while flames shoot out in every direction.  Some poor soul on the top floor sticks their head out the window to yell "We're doomed!", as yet another person with a big head runs screaming towards the building yelling "aaaa!"  What I at first though was a firetruck shooting water at the fire, turns out to actually be a tank in disguise, shooting at either the building, the fire, or the self labeled "bom" flying over head.  I asked the artist what the things over to the side were, and he said "The people had to throw all of their giant cheeseburgers out the windows so they wouldn't burn up!" Couldn't let that happen!

Not only is a he a brilliant artist and writer, but he's smart, too! His class has been studying r controlled vowels in spelling.  On the back of his worksheet, he was instructed to come up with some of his own "ar" words.  Here's what he came up with.

Bar, barn, yarn...ok, good.  Next is "fart".  Of  course it is.  Please don't miss the plume of gas escaping the stick person's derrière!  I didn't even know stick people had behinds! I love the smug look the person has on his (her?) face-that's the same look my husband gets when he rips one.  Judging by the long hair, this may actually be a girl, which makes it slightly funnier, for some reason.  I love how the teacher just checked the paper and moved on.  Something tells me he wasn't the only boy to come up with this particular "ar" word.

Last but not least, we have a self portrait.
I apologize for it being sideways, but I'm too lazy to edit it it's funnier that way.  Let me first tell you that while he does have a large head in real life (2 hours of pushing with this one!!), he is much cuter and better looking in person, and his face and neck are generally the same color.  If you look close, you can see fangs-I asked him if he thought he was a vampire.  He said, "Oh no, Mom.  I actually tried to erase those."  Apparently, he thought the shark teeth were more realistic.  Added bonus: scrunch your eyes, and focus on the black space, and you'll see a water goblet!

I love this sweet, funny kid!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Thursday Thirteen

I love a good meme when I have a bunch of random thoughts floating around in my head, but no coherent full story ideas.  Today I'm jumping on the Thursday Thirteen bandwagon.  Visit the Thursday-13 site to link up your own Thirteen, or to read more posts.

1.  My daughter recently bought her first Teen Beat magazine.  She's growing up too fast. Oddly enough, there were no Menudo, Scott Baio or Kirk Cameron pictures in there like I remembered. < scratching head in wonder >

2.  I went to my Uncle's funeral today.  There were originally 11 kids in my Dad's family, and only 7 of them remain.  My brother and I were looking around wondering when all of our uncles and aunts and cousins got so old, because, of course, we haven't aged a bit!

3.  I'm on a pot stickers kick lately.  I bought the frozen premade kind at the store last week, and they didn't turn out too well, because to the pan.  (Thus the name?)

4.  The dead battery is still in my purse.  I did do a little decrapifying cleaning out, though.  I'm thinking of making the battery my purse mascot, or something.

5.  I appreciate the irony of the fact that I was given grief about not attending any family reunions by someone who's technically no longer even related to the family today.  (Married into family, then divorced years later.)  I love her, so that's ok.

6.  Hmmm....I've been stuck on number 6 for a really long time.

7. No one should wear this .  Unless you are a 3 year old girl, and everything else is dirty, and your Mommy just drug this out of the "Stuff That the Well Intentioned Grandma with Questionable Taste" bought at a garage sale for you to wear with your ruffly socks and white patent leather shoes.

8.  I like to make Turkey and Black Bean Sloppy Joes.  Well, technically, I like to eat them, not make them.  They are actually fairly good for you.  I loosely follow this recipe , but I use tomato sauce instead of juice, and add about 1/8 cup of ketchup, and 1 TBS of brown sugar.  I also puree most of the black beans into the tomato paste, and smash the others a bit with a fork so it isn't so "bean-y".  This would be a good chili recipe with a little extra tomato sauce and maybe some corn or something thrown in.  And cheese.  Cheese makes everything better.  (I ought to have that stitched on a pillow.)

9.  Five more, huh? Hmmmm.  For once in my life, I'm having a little trouble coming up with randomness.

10.  I recently found The Mouthy Housewives blog.  It's a hilariously sarcastic, tongue in cheek "advice" column.  It's very snarky, but there is much truth in the snark!

11.  I want this necklace for Mother's Day.  After nearly 13 years of marriage, and nearly 10 years of motherhood, I've learned that in order to get something I actually want for a gift giving holiday, I either have to purchase it myself ("Look what you bought me for Mother's Day, Honey!"), or be very deliberate and specific (there's only a 50/50 chance of this one working, but he prefers "surprising" me).  I've opted to try my luck at the second strategy this time, so I showed him the computer screen and said "Look! I want THIS for Mother's Day!", and emailed him the link.  We'll see what happens.

12.  I'm almost there(!), and there's actually still some of Thursday left!

13.  Tomorrow, I'll be back with the latest installment of "Disturbing Pictures My Son Draws", so check back Friday afternoon or evening!  Also in the works, is an update to my "Library Loser" post (fyi-I'm STILL a Library Loser).  If you haven't read the originals of these, the links are on my sidebar, if you are interested.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Is it just me or do you... (Part 2)

It's time for another fun round of Is It Just Me, or Do You.... Designed to help all of us but especially me feel better about some of the silly/crazy/strange/quirky things we do.

So, tell me, is it just me, or do you....
  • always wear socks to the OB/GYN? Even if I wear sandals, I bring along a pair of socks to wear because "Oh my gawsh! I can't let him see my feet!"
  • I'll take any excuse to post a funny kitty picture...
  • put wrinkled clothes in the dryer for a while, hoping that you won't have to actually iron?
  • buy yourself a candy bar at the grocery store on those rare occasions when you get to go alone, and snarf it down quickly in the car on the way home so you don't have to share it with your kids?
  • get a little jealous of people who actually really don't mind ordering grilled chicken or fish and steamed vegetables at restaurants, instead of the cheesy, creamy, fatty, high caloric items (ie-things that taste good)? Honestly, when I'm trying to eat "healthy" (ie-trying to not have to buy yet another size up in pants), I'd rather eat a Lean Cuisine at home than have to choke down an overpriced slab of plain chicken at a restaurant.
  • get annoyed as you listen to your Mom talk about how her Mom is annoying her? (she's 84 Mom, if she thinks the cake you baked 2 months ago had white icing when it really had chocolate icing, then WHO CARES?! True story.)
  • spritz some Febreeze around before company comes just so it smells like you've been cleaning?
  • feel completely satisfied with just wandering around Target when you finally get some alone time? (Added points if you smile and get a little giddy when you hear other children crying/whining/fighting with siblings/begging for toys because you're thinking to yourself, "Haha! That's not my kid!")
  • ever introduce yourself to someone you've already met several times? Yes, true story, sadly.  I have a bad habit of not recognizing people when they are out of the normal context of where I am used to seeing them.  It's so embarrassing.
  • have to rehearse in your head what you are going to say before you make a business call? (Added points if you forget what you were going to say when they answer the phone, and you spend a few seconds being tongue-tied before stuttering or giggling nervously.)
  • watch 45 minutes of a program before you remember that the program was DVR'd, and you could have been fast forwarding the commercials (and not strategically planning bathroom or snack trips so you didn't miss anything)?
  • dream about writing great blog posts or witty Facebook statuses in your sleep, but then can't remember them in the morning?
What are your "Is it just me, or's"?  If you'd like, share them in the comments, or blog about them and let me know so I can read them!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Like Mama's Box of Chocolates...

I've sort of been at a loss as to what to blog about this week-generally, I wait until I have something to say, or until something funny happens, but I'm at a loss for blog fodder this week.  Sooooo....during some blog browsing today, I noticed that there was a meme of sorts going around that originated at Stacy Julian's scrapbooking blog .  Participants are supposed to dump their purses and blog about what's in them, take a picture of said purse dump, and post it in a "diptych" with a picture of yourself sans makeup (and possibly sans hair product as well?).  Well, being a the type of rule follower who believes in always following rules, yet bending them to fit my own desires, abilities and logic, I'll post the purse dump, but you are SO not getting the no makeup picture of me.  Yeah, not gonna happen. Besides, I've not  the foggiest idea how to make a photo diptych, and I really don't care to learn (I'm such a rebel!).  Participants are also supposed to write about what the purse contents say about them. (I'm apparently a disorganized sloth.)  You've got to click on this lady's link just to see how neat her "purse dump" picture is... (I'll bet her house is spotless...)

Like Mama's box of chocolates, when you reach into my purse, you never know what your going to get.

I have two pairs of cheap sunglasses. Cheap, because I always lose, scratch or break them, so I can't see spending more than $15 on a pair of shades.  Two, because while we were at Disney World, I thought I lost a pair in the restroom, so I bought another pair, after squinting in the sun all day.  After returning to where we were staying, I found my old ones in another purse.  Now, I can't answer why I have both pairs in my purse  currently... What does this say about me? Ummmm....I'm cheapfrugal, practical, and absent minded!

I have 2 limp balms, 2 lipglosses, and 2 lipsticks.  What does this say about me? Ummm....I like soft shiny, lips? I dunno.  Moving on....I have hand lotion, hand sanitizer, Bath & Body Works Body Splash, because I like to be soft and sweet smelling while I disinfect myself, I suppose.  Next is a pencil from when my son had to do homework while we were at his sister's basketball practice-that says that we're busy and my son has too much homework (gripe for another day).  Checkbook and pen-obvious, I would think.

The wristlet that I use as a wallet is in there-overstuffed with receipts, credit cards, rewards cards that I can never find when I need them, spare change (that hasn't actually fallen out into my purse yet), a tiny hairclip, and a key on a paperclip that apparently doesn't go to anything anymore, because I don't remember what it's for.  What does all that mess say about me? Refer back to the disorganized sloth comment.

Widetoothed comb? That says that I'm not bald, I guess.  Keys? I have a home, vehicles, and a job.  In other words, I have a mortgage, car loans, and door to lock at work.  Riveting post today, isn't it?  Contact case and Glasses case?  I'm blind as a bat.  Sweet Tarts packet? I think my son gave them to me at some point in time, and I've yet to eat them.  Honesty, I didn't even know they were in there.  Guess that means I can add "forgetful" to the unflattering list of things this purse dump is saying about me.  Nutra Grain bar? That was meant to be breakfast, as I always eat breakfast on the run, since I'm too lazy to wake up 10 minutes earlier to eat at home.

Let's see...there's also a random dead battery in here.  It was actually in another purse when I switched purses, and I left it in there.  You never know when you might need one, right? There's hair barrette in case I need to get my daughter's hair out of her eyes, and some strange, broken pink plastic thing in case I figure out that the mystery pink plastic thing it was once attached to needs to be repaired.  All these things say that I need to clean the trash out of my purse I like to be prepared for any situation!

There's a BandAid wrapper in there because my daughter refuses to trim her nails, so her nails break off in the quick and bleed.  Just what you wanted to know, right?  All that says about me is that I need to hold her down and cut her nails, or else buy more BandAids.  The two blue tickets are from arcade games.  These say that I'm a wonderful Mom who once in a blue moon lets my kids play arcades so they'll give me a few minutes peace knows how happy it makes my kids to play video games and waste my hard earned money in exchange for some cheap plastic crap that isn't worth my gas money getting to the place.

I've also got 3 pay stubs, which say quite loudly that I don't make enough money for someone with a college degree, and I pay too much in taxes.  Other than that, they say that I don't clean out my purse often enough, since I get paid twice a month and I have 3 stubs here.  You do the math.

Last but not least, is my Vera Bradley phone case, and my phone, which I was taking the picture with.  Hmmmm...the "Vera Bradley" says that I'm a thirty-something suburban Mom, and the phone, well, that's fairly obvious.

So, in summary, I am a disorganized sloth, who is cheap, practical, busy, blind, and lazy.  Grrrrreeeeaaaaatttt. I think I picked the wrong bandwagon to jump on today.....

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Fight! Fight! or There is No Fury Like that of a Sister

Hey-sorry about the long post, and the unusual absence of sarcasm and self-deprecation, but I'm in the midst of Mama Bear fueled angst that I need to get off my chest.  We'll get back to the regularly scheduled goofiness/snark soon, so bear with me! 

She's nine years old and about 50 pounds of skin and bones.  Anyone who tries to mess with her little brother has to get past her first-and she's tougher than she looks! He's 7, impulsive, mischievous, and....well...just plain mean sometimes.  I'm talking about the kid who made the mistake of trying to start a fight with my son (for the second time in a week) in front of his sister.

For years, I've told my kids to always watch out for each other.  Friends are good, but family is more important, I drilled into their little heads. For a long time, I was afraid that my words would never sink in.  My daughter and son are best friends, although they would never admit it.  Sure they argue and bicker, and do little things to annoy each other like all siblings do, but where one is, you are sure to find the other.  My only sibling was 9 years older than me, and we are not close at all.  I've always felt like I've missed out by not having a brother or sister closer to my age, someone I could relate to.  So naturally, it makes me very happy that my kids are so close.

Last week, Tot (my son) was at his Cub Scout Den meeting with his Dad.  Our Den meetings are always a frustrating mess of disorganized chaos. Especially for me, a former Kindergarten teacher, who likes order, routine, and control, especially when a group of easily hyped little boys are concerned.  But, I'm not in charge, and since I work during some of the meeting nights, I can't volunteer, therefore I feel like I don't have the right to complain.

Anyhow, my husband came home from the meeting furious.  During an outdoor "game", that resulted, not surprisingly, in the boys running around like madmen, as usual, Marcus (name has been changed to protect the guilty and bratty), a boy from our neighborhood, tackled Tot, knocked him to the ground, and held him down, out of the blue.  Marcus' Aunt Tracy (name changed to protect the clueless and idiotic), who is raising him, just stood by and watched, giggling.  Tot was able to roll himself over and get up unscathed, but my husband was angry-this kid has been on his "Daddy Radar" for a while already as a potential bully.  Our daughter was equally as angry as her father upon hearing what happened. She clenched her small fists angrily, growled menacingly, and vowed that Marcus was "going to get it!" I have to admit that this part was kind of cute-my scrawny, tiny for her age, little girl, ready to go after some mean boy for her brother's sake....  Anyhow, we calmed her down, and things have been peaceful around here since, until today.

This afternoon, they were playing with some kids in our neighbor's backyard.  Little Bit (my daughter) rushed home, burst through the door, and breathlessly announced that she just "protected" her brother from Marcus, who had invited himself over.  It seems that Marcus, who had already been making a general nuisance of himself, winged a tennis ball straight into Tot's eye with all his might.  My son, who will normally do anything not to cry in front of his friends, burst into tears.  Marcus laughed at Tot, who got up and kicked him in the leg.  Both boys were wrestling with each other, when Big Sis jumped in and "protected" her brother.

"I kicked him in the nuts, Mom!", my innocent little princess said proudly. *face palm*  I felt instant shock and revulsion (and if I'm totally honest, a teeny smidge of pride-hey I'm not perfect!) hearing those words (well, actually just that one particular word) come out of my daughter's mouth.  We don't use that word in our house (well, for that anyway), and we don't condone that kind of talk, yet I was proud of her for sticking up for her brother, so I didn't know whether to scold her for her language (which she honestly had no idea was bad-she probably learned it from Marcus), or thank her for taking care of her brother.  I think I did a mixture of both, as I ran outside to get Tot, who was now talking to one of the "bystanders".

Tot was fine, by the way.  (I really shouldn't have picked such a babyish nickname for him, because he held his own pretty well.) I think he'll have a pretty good shiner in the morning, but the tears were long gone as he thanked his sister for sticking up for him.  I had a talk with Little Bit (Little Bit of Fierce Rawrr!!, that is) about how it probably would have been better to go and get a grownup, and how kicking a boy there should probably be a last resort, but I did tell her that I was proud of her for taking up for her brother.

I don't want to raise fighters, but I do want to raise good kids, who love each other, and who can always depend on each other.  And you know what? I think it's working!

Friday, April 16, 2010

The One Where I Prove My Stupidity

Before I (further?) prove my stupidity, I need to take care of some housekeeping type stuff.  Don't worry, not housecleaning type stuff-bleck! I don't like to do housework, much less write about it.  More like, tie up some loose ends, and such.

Ultimate Blog Party 2010

First of all, 5 Minutes for Mom's Ultimate Blog Party 2010 is over.  The pizza rolls are long gone, the Jon Gosselin pinata was decimated by day 2, and the replacement pinatas (Tiger Woods and John Edwards, of course), are destroyed, as well.  Good times, right? The party was a huge success, as far as I'm concerned! I've found so many great  new blogs to read, that I think I'm going to have to quit my job just so I can keep up! (Who needs a stinkin' paycheck anyway, I've got blogs to read!) I'm not going to name names, because I wouldn't want to leave anyone out, but seriously, I've found some great reads, and met some fun, talented, and inspiring people! am stunned and flattered and stunned and thrilled and stunned and tickled pink (oh yeah, and STUNNED!) by all of the comments I've received, and by...HELLO! all of my new followers!  Frankly, I'm surprised that anyone reads my blog, much less 31 of you, so thank you for taking the time to stop in here and read my various ramblings.  I've really appreciated all of your kind words-they've definitely been the highlights of my week.

So, on with the stupidity.  I'm basically one pair of dark shades away from being blind-at least when I'm not wearing my contact lenses or glasses.  I generally shower without either, so reading is not something I do while I bathe.  Image my surprise this morning, when something possessed me to put my conditioner bottle exactly 2 inches away from my eye so that I could read the label.  My lovely, creamy, white conditioner, is actually...wait for it.....shampoo.  Yes indeedy, I've been washing my hair twice every morning for an indefinite amount of time with two different shampoos. This would go a long way towards explaining why my hair is not dark brown like in my profile picture, but is actually a light, mousy brown, after only about 4 weeks after coloring.  Shampooing twice daily, even with color safe shampooS will do that, I suppose.  I am an idiot, but at least I have clean hair!  Providing comic relief with examples of my idiocy: it's what I do best.  But gee, my hair smells terrific!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

My Dad

Again this Thursday, I've chosen to participate in Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop.  Every week, 5 prompts are posted, and participating bloggers choose one or more prompts to write about.  On Thursdays, participants go back to Mama Kat's blog to link up, and read the posts of others.  Click the button below to play along! (But read my post first, LOL!)

Mama's Losin' It

I've chosen to write about prompt number 3:
3.) What does that tell you about your father? List five products your father used (or uses). Write a longer piece about, at least, one of them.

I couldn't sleep last night, so as I was tossing and turning, I was trying to think of five products my Dad uses.  Although there are many things I could say about my Dad, many memories I could write about (mental note to self to write about his workboots someday), many personality traits and qualities of his that I could share, writing about products he uses is difficult.  My Dad is a frugal guy.  Having grown up poor, as the 10th of eleven kids on a tobacco farm in Kentucky, my Dad has never had an abundance of cash to spend.  He's not a big brand name guy-he generally seeks out the least expensive item he can find, especially if it is something for his own use. 

I could easily come up with products that remind me of my Mom-the Kroger brand of Noxema that she has been washing her virtually unlined face with for most of her life, would be at the top of the list.  I only have to smell that instantly recognizable scent to think of my Mom, and kissing her soft, freshly washed cheek goodnight. I will always associate Triple Lanolin Hand Lotion with my Grandma.  That familiar yellow tube with the fancy green script writing almost always pops into my head when I think about her.  She was a smoker when I was a child, and the smell of her cigarettes would entertwine with the scent of her lotion, and her L'air Du Temps perfume, creating a surprisingly, not unpleasant, Grandma smell.  (Ok, here I am trying to be all sentimental and reflective, and I'm trying not to giggle at "Grandma smell"! See what happens when I try to get serious around here?)  Camel Cigarettes will always remind me of my Grandpa, who lived to the ripe old age of 93.  He smoked Camels from the time he was 14 until he was sucked so far into the depths of Alzheimers, that he forgot that he was ever a smoker to begin with.

But my Dad? Wow.  Let's see, there's Grape Nuts Flakes cereal, Maxwell House Coffee, Mennon aftershave, and.....ummmm....hmmmmmm.

Let's start with the Grape Nuts Flakes-if any of these products say anything about my Dad, it will probably be the flakes.  When my Dad finds something he likes, he sticks with it. He's not a flaky guy.  (Ha! See what I did there?)  Everyday of my childhood, as far back as I can remember, my Dad ate Grape Nut Flakes cereal.  Every.  Day.  Have you tried this stuff? It tastes like cardboard-I don't understand the draw, but apparently he liked it.  (Past tense-he's actually now in the midst of a decades long Corn Flake phase.) My Dad is the type of guy who goes through long phases of eating exactly the same thing-usually something very practical, and no frills.  I remember a long spell where he would take a sleeve of unsalted crackers, a packet of turkey lunchmeat (you know, the packets of meat that rest below the bologna and olive loaf packages in the grocery store? Those.), and the ever present, stainless stell thermos of coffee for lunch everyday.  My Dad prefers simple foods.  If you try to impress him with a fancy meal, you'll be disappointed.  He'll be much happier with a simple ham sandwhich on fake wheat bread with Miracle Whip. 

Maxwell House coffee is another.  I don't know if he buys it because he truly prefers it, or because it's pretty inexpensive, but those blue metal coffee cans are a familiar site of my childhood.  Never one to throw anything useful away, my Dad has can after can filled with screws, washers, marbles, and who knows what else packed in his shed out back.  I remember eating breakfast with my Dad, the smell of his coffee mingling with his breakfast cereal, his newspaper spread over the kitchen table.  My Dad is the lone morning person in the family-he's always enjoyed a long, leisurely breakfast, sipping his coffee and reading his paper.  Not surprisingly, he takes his coffee black. No fancy flavored cream for him, and he wouldn't be caught dead drinking a Latte or Cappucino.

Mennon aftershave.  Well, I can't remember the exact name of the stuf, but I can picture the squat, dimpled bottle, filled with green liquid. I remember my Dad slapping the stuff on his bristly cheeks after shaving.  When he wanted to be "fancy", he'd wear English Leather cologne, for my Mom-strongly scented and masculine, it came in a square glass bottle with a wooden cap.

Actually, I find that these things say a lot about my Dad and his personality.  He's content with simple pleasures, and he's a very down to earth person, who doesn't feel the need to put on airs for anyone.  He's not defined by the brand names he chooses to surround himself with like many people in our society today, but rather by his lack of brand identity.  His character, and his quiet, loyal strength are his identity-at least to me.

This picture is one of my favorites, my Dad reading to my kids when they were both tiny.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


I'm a little hesitant to write this post, because I don't want to scare away any of my new followers (thank you and welcome, by the way!), but so many people commented on my Ultimate Blog Party post that they liked the fact that I keep it real over here, sooooooooo.... I'm about to get all real up in here.  (That's a suburban 30-something Mom trying to be cool there, folks.)

I had a little outpatient surgical procedure today, nothing serious, but they had to put me under, and all that.  I'm feeling pretty good, maybe a tiny bit weak, but I'm not in pain or anything, so that's good.  The worst part of this whole deal was the preparation for the surgery.  When I scheduled my surgery, my doctor's office gave me a folder with instructions to follow before the procedure.  Mostly, it was the typical, don't eat or drink after midnight the night before, don't take asprin or ibuprofin, etc.  But,  there was one other thing I had to do last night (actually I had to do it twice!!), that seemed kind of unusual for this specific type of surgery, but the instructions were on the official paper with my Doctor's name on it, so I did it.

I'm not going to tell you what I did, but I'm sure many of you can figure it out.  Those of you who can't-trust me, you don't want to know, anyhow.  It's just not pleasant, and some things just can't be.....ummmm.....unthought.  It was pretty horrible and humiliating, and I refuse to ever do it again.  Anyhow, let's just say, that a woman knows she's found a good man, when he'll hold her up on the toilet for 10 looooonnnnggg minutes so she doesn't fall off when she feels like she's going to pass out.  That, my friends, is true love, LOL.  Seriously, other than the...ummmm....thing that I had to do (Twice!!! Did I mention that? Twice!), which was not good at all, I had some pretty scary side effects that I don't think I was supposed to, and...the thing (thingSuh) didn't quite have their desired effect, which I worried about all night when I was not busy clutching my pillow in hopes of not sliding off the edge of reality.

Today at the hospital, my Doctor came to check in with me before the surgery.  He's a pretty nice guy, and I've always really liked him as a Doctor, but when I mentioned that I had trouble with those things, he sort of chuckled, waved his hand, and said "Awww, you didn't really have to DO that.  Sorry, those were OLD instructions you were given. That wasn't really necessary." Yeah.  In that moment, I didn't like him so much.

But, after the surgery, he gave me some pretty sweet pictures of the thing he removed, so I think he was trying to make up for it in the way only a surgeon can.  Don't worry, I won't be posting those, but they all look vaguely like Venus..... Hey, the last time something was removed from my body, I got a baby out of the deal, so I was happy to be going home with something again!

On a happier note, I am feeling really blessed.  I have some really sweet friends-my work friends surprised me and took me out to lunch yesterday, and some friends from church are bringing us dinner for two nights in a row.  It really warms my heart to know that people care about me.  My extended family are being a little...indifferent about it all, so it surprised me that so many people chose to express their support for me, in what is essenstially a little thing.  Talk about being the hands and feet of Jesus...I've been blessed to be a recipient, and yes, God is in the little things, too.

I'm still a little under the influenece of the little cocktail the anesthesioloist gave me today, so if this makes no sense, or is riddled with spelling and grammar errors, then.....well, I guess I'm writing how I normally do.      < insert rimshot here > Wacka, wacka, wacka! Hoo boy, I think I'd better sign off now....

Sunday, April 11, 2010

My Daughter, the Businesswoman

Are you visiting from The Ultimate Blog Party? If so, welcome! My party post is here .

I've never really used my daughter's name on here-I'm not really sure why, but for now, I'll follow that old Mommy Blog cliche and call her a cutesy nickname.  I've called her Little Bit since she was a baby, so we'll go with that.  I call my son Tot, even though at 7, he's probably way too old for that nickname, but he'll always be my Totty.  And I'll probably still be smelling his head when he's in college.  What? Sometimes (probably when his hair needs to be washed) his hair still gets that sweet smell it had when he was a baby.  It's a Mom thing.  Anyhow, I'm getting waaaay off track here, which I'm prone to do.  I'm supposed to be talking about what a shyster entrepreneur my 9 year old Little Bit is.

When she's not playing her DS, or pretending to be a cat or dog with her brother, or writing plays to make the neighborhood kids act in, she's dreaming up ways to make some cold, hard cash.  Need a household chore done? She's your girl, if the price is right.  (Although sometimes I make her do them anyhow, because "I'm the Mom and I said so", and all that).  When her brother had to sell popcorn for Cub Scouts, she was itching to get out the door and sell it for him (even though she wouldn't get the money).  When Girl Scout cookies season rolled around, she set a goal of selling 1000 boxes of cookies. It's so hard to tell your child that they are aiming too high.  "Set your goals a little lower, dear."  See, that's just not right!

The picture is of Little Bit having a Toy Sale last summer during our neighborhood's annual garage sale.  (No, we don't always keep our garbage cans in the driveway.) The stuff you see is only a portion of what she decided to sell.  She did pretty well, she's got the "cute factor" going for her.  One lady came by twice to buy My Little Ponies from her.  She didn't even have kids, she just said that Little Bit looked so cute and hopeful standing out there, that she had to buy something from her.  (Yes, if I've taught her anything as a mother, it's how to stand by looking cute and hopeful until somebody helps you. *Bats eyelashes* What? It's a great skill!)

We live in the 'burbs, in a safe neighborhood on a culdesac at the end of a long road.  There are other families with kids on the other side of the culdesac.  We sort of have an understanding with the other families-the kids can go from yard to yard, or ride their bikes in the area, and we all sort of look out our windows and keep an eye on the kids. As they've gotten older, their freedom has expanded, but they mostly have to stay within the culdesac.  When Little Bit was about six, unbeknowst to us, she took off down the street with another little girl, armed with an Easter basket filled with nail polish bottles.  I can't remember how we found out, but when they got about 5 houses down the road, we found out that they were knocking on doors, offering to paint people's nails for .50! They had earned some "sympathy money" from good natured neighbors who now probably thought we didn't watch our kids, but they were made to return it.  (Not one of my finer moments of parenting, that.)

Then there was last fall.  Little Bit had been busy for days, cranking out woven pot holders on her little loom.  (Remember those little square looms with the loops you weave?) Our neighbors had a bunch of friends over towatch a game, and again, unbeknowst to us, Little Bit made a sign, taped it to the mailbox, and set up shop in the driveway.  I figured out pretty quickly what she was doing and put a stop to it, but not before she had sold 2 potholders for $5 to a "grandparent type" visiting our neighbor.  Five bucks!!

Fast forward to Friday afterschool.  The kids are out playing, enjoying the sunshine and warmth after a long winter. Tot comes in with chocolate around his mouth (a fairly standard look for him), but I didn't make much of it until he mentioned that he needed more quarters.  Low and behold, Little Bit is out in the garage with her Easy Bake Oven making brownies, and selling them to the neighbor kids and her brother for .25 a piece!  I didn't make her stop-I figured if they are dumb enough to pay .25 cents for a nasty old Easy Bake brownie, then so be it.

What does she do with the money? Well, I'm proud to say that she is a very careful shopper.  She can spend over an hour in the toy aisle of Target, trying to decide whether to buy Magic Beans and a couple of packs of Pokemon cards, or a Webkinz, or to save her money.  She compares prices, and agonizes over these decisions forever.  (Unless she's spending our money...)

I was going to go into how she used to convince her little brother to trade her his paper money for her pennies and nickles (he's since wisened up), and how every year she cons him out of the best of his Trick or Treat candy (he happily goes along with it to please her), but this post is long enough already.  She says that she's going to be a teacher during the week, a vet on weekends, and a movie star whenever she has extra time, but we think she's going to be a CEO of a big company or a lawyer.  At least we know she can support us when we get old, although she'll probably put us in the "bargain" home....

Friday, April 9, 2010

Party Time!

As with all online things, I'm arriving late to the party.  This time, I'm referring to 5 Minutes for Mom's 2010 Ultimate Blog Party.  Sounds pretty exciting, doesn't it?  The point of the party is to get to know other bloggers, and to find other great blogs.  Click the button below to learn more about the blog party and to find other great blogs to party at.

Ultimate Blog Party 2010

I'm supposed to write a "Party Post" to introduce myself, so grab a Solo cup of Coke and be sure to write your name on it with Sharpie (because that's how we party in my family), and grab a plate.  I just threw some chips into a bowl, and took some Pizza Rolls out of the oven, so grab some, and help yourself.  What?  So I'm not Martha Stewart, as evidenced from my attempt at food blogging .  Anyhow, have a seat (or stand, or whatever you normally would do at an imaginary online party).

As my blog title suggests (and my About Me section that you can barely read over the graphic-argh!) attests, I'm an imperfect mom.  I don't pretend to have it all together for your sake-I pretty much let it all hang out.  I have lots of bad habits, one of which, you can read about here .  I sometimes share about funny things my kids have said or done, or even funny things my kids have drawn .  I usually keep it pretty light and fluffy around here, but I am a Christian, and sometimes I'm so exicted about a Wow Moment I've had with God that I have to post about it.  Sometimes I post about childhood memories, like the post below, or this one about my first car.  Mostly, I post about random incidents, things that strike me as funny, or whatever pops into my head.  If you really want to know more about me in general, read this .

I'm pretty new at this blogging thing, both with the blog writing, and blog reading, so I'm looking forward to "meeting" some new folks and finding some new blogs!  Whether you are a regular reader, visiting from the Party, or just stumbled upon my blog, thanks for visiting! me eat the rest of these Pizza Rolls, and then we can go outside and play Badminton-without a net, because that's how we do it in my family.  We're a little crazy like that...  Oh yeah! There's also a pinata, shaped like Jon Gosselin (wouldn't everyone like to take a few blind whacks at him with a baseball bat?), so grab your goodie bags, and head outside!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Biggest Baby in Our House is Me

Today I'm doing something different.  I'm participating in Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop.  Every week, Mama Kat posts 5 writing prompts, and participants choose 1 prompt to blog about.  I chose to write about a ridiculous fear that I have (because I have about a million), but if you'd like to see the other prompts, or check out the other participant's posts, click the button below.

Mama's Losin' It

I've always been a fearful person.  I remember a time as a small child where I wouldn't go out and play for several months unless my Dad was with me, because I had seen a tv show about people who were attacked by dogs.  I was terrified that the two friendly Husky pups next door would jump the fence and bite me, or that some random stray would run into our yard and hurt me.  I was also afraid of the dark.  I'm still somewhat embarrassed to admit that I slept with my bedroom light on until I was ten years old.  My Mom still likes to tell the story about how I would be terrifed when I saw a fire engine, because I thought fire fighters actually went around and started fires.  I don't know where I got that idea from, but I do remember crying hysterically after a fire truck went down our street when I was about four years old.  I was also afraid of storms, new situations, water, and pretty much everything else.

As an adult, I still have plenty of fears, most of them typical.  Like any mother, my greatest fear is something bad happening to my children.  I also worry about something happening to my husband or my parents, or that I won't be a good enough mother, but those things aren't "ridiculous fears", and they're certainly not fun to write about, either. 

I do have to admit that the Burger King guy sort of freaks me out.  You know who I mean-the "King" with the giant plastic head and the skinny legs on the commercials.  That frozen, snarling grin on the shiny face with the immobile features just makes me shudder.  Maybe if he spoke, or did something funny it wouldn't be so bad, but he just sort of quietly enters the scence, taunting me with his freakishly plastic smile, and stares into the camera knowingly.  What does he know? He knows that he feaks people out!  I can't just be me.  Right?  I'll admit that my dislike of the King is pretty riduclous, but actually, I find him to be more creepy than scary.

I do have a really ridiculous fear that began in childhood that I've never actually outgrown.  Aliens.  Yes, aliens.  Specifically the little green ones with the big almond shaped eyes.  (Because I like to be specific with my irrational fears, you know?) Honestly, I don't really think these aliens are real (which is where the irrational comes in), but you never know. It all started when I was about 7 or 8.  We'd gone to visit my Aunt and Uncle, and they sent me home with a big boxful of children's books that my cousins had outgrown.  Now I was a good reader for my age; my vocabulary and comprehension skills far exceeded my maturity level, and we've already established the fact that I was afraid of pretty much everything.  So, you can just imagine what happened when I found a book in the box about UFOs and aliens. Had my mother known it was in there, she would have surely thrown it away before I could get my innocent, trusting little hands on it. I can still see the cover of the book-it was royal blue, with a blurry, flying saucer on the front.  The book contained stories and interviews with people about alien encounters.  Photographs and illustrations accompanied the stories, making them look "official".  Having been taught the difference between fiction and nonfiction, I assumed that the "real people" telling the stories and the photographs, rather than cartoonish drawings, made this book factual.  My world was turned upside down.  No longer would I walk down the dark hallway of our house to my bedroom by myself.  Sitting in the back of our Pinto station wagon at night with my parents all the way at the front, was out of the question.  My mother threw out the book, and tried to convince me that my fears were irrational.  I think I finally believed her on some level, but this silly fear has never totally left me.  If I see a movie, a picture or a tv show about these aliens (you know, the green ones again?), or watch an interview with a supposed alien abuduction victim, then I can't stand to be alone in a dark room.  Sometimes I get a little freaked out when I'm the only one up late at night, and I refuse to look out the back windows of the house, because what if something peers in at me from the other side? I know, I know-I'm a 35 year old woman who worries about little green men.  SOMETIMES! Only sometimes.  The rest of the time, I'm a reasonably sane (stop laughing!), secure and rational person, really!  So that is my ridiculous fear-not heights, or ghosts, or clowns (such cheery, givers of laughter and joy that they are!), but aliens.

I just had a scary thought!  Maybe the reason the King has such a big mask is because a.... bigoldgreenslimyalienhead! With almond shaped eyes! Yikes! I KNEW there was something I didn't trust about that guy!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Hey, guess what?

I won another blog award! Woohoo! Ok, I have to set the scene before I can formally accept this award.  Imagine that I am wearing an elegant evening gown.  Maybe something in gold or black, but definitley classically styled.  I tried to find a picture to help your imaginations, but apparently, I'm too picky to even choose an imaginary dress, with imaginary money, to fit my imaginary body, which is 35 pounds slimmer and  3 or 4 inches taller than my actual body.  (Just think what it must be like to shop with me in real life!) Anyhow, here I am in my lovely, classic old Hollywood dress (I'm thinking maybe something vintage-y? Hmmmm...), standing on stage somewhere glamourous, clutching my newest blog award.  Oh.  Wait a minute, that won't work.  Ok, so I'm clutching my laptop, with the award on the screen! Yeah, that's it! But, my battery is crap, so I'll need a really long extension cord, and that'll look tacky, so let's just put the award on a big old screen behind me.  Imagine my hair looking however you want, because I can't even figure out what to do with in in real life.  (I've always wanted to try red, though....)  Someone handsome (George Clooney maybe) just called me up on stage, and kissed me on the cheek. (I like this scenario!)
There-that's probably way more scene setting than necessary, but this is a big moment for me here!

Tanya, from Dreams Diapers and Dilemmas, has bestowed upon my blog the Beautiful Blogger award.  (Me? Beautiful? *Bats eyelashes coyly*) Tanya has a great blog, and she and I seem to have a lot in common.  I think we'd be good friends here in the real world! Thank you Tanya, I appreciate it, and look forward to returning the favor someday!

According to the rules of acceptance, this is what I have to do, and so do the people I pass the award on to.

* Thank and link to the person that gave you the award.

* Pass this award on to 15 fantastic bloggers you’ve recently discovered.

* Contact the Bloggers and let them know they’ve won (leave a comment on their latest post and/or tweet it with their @twitter name).

* State 7 things about yourself.

Wow-these things always want you to pass on the award to 15 people.  I'm still kind of new at this blogging thing, and I'm sort of shy and awkward about this kind of stuff (and pretty much everything in general, come to think of it).  I'm not sure I can do 15, but here are a few Beautiful Blogs I've recently started reading:

Buncha Blue-eyed Monkeys
Burried With Children
The Chronicles of a Veteran Kindergarten Teacher
My Little Life
Four Hoosiers, Two Cats and a Poker Table

Not 15, but check out my blog roll for some of my other favorites, who may add the award themselves if they happen to be reading.

Seven Things (because I haven't blabbered on long enough yet) About Moi
I talk about myself a lot on here, this is harder than I thought to come up with new, random stuff.

1. I hate mornings. Hate.  I never, ever, feel rested in the morning, yet I can't go to sleep at a reasonable time at night.
2.  My family has no idea that I blog.  No clue at all.
3.  My Mom is the only person in the world who totally "gets" me, and her health is poor.  That really scares me-I need her.
4.  I'm currently addicted to the show Ruby.
5.  I can't remember the last time all the laundry in the house was done.  (I do the laundry, so that's about me, right?)
6.  I love Big Chewy Sweet Tarts, Chewy Sprees, BottleCaps and Nerds. 
7.  I'm a very loyal friend, but I'm terrible at maintaining friendships, if that makes any sense.

*cue music* Oh, I guess my time is up! Thanks ag... *cut to commercial*

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Enough of the Rat Race

By "Rat Race", I mean Disney World.  This is the third year in a row that we've gone to Orlando with our kids.  Each year we question why we keep coming back.  It's not that we don't like Disney, it's just that we don't find it "magical" as other people seem to.  Sure, it's nice and clean, and all of the Cast Members (Disney's fancy name for their workers) are friendly and smiling, but after all, it is just an amusement park.  (Ok, I just imagined that I heard about a hundred people gasping in surprise and indignation at the "just an amusement park" part. Sorry! Maybe.) I suppose a lot of it has to do with the fact that my kids have very little interest in dressing up in costumes, or greeting the characters, and they aren't very brave when it comes to riding rides. 

Or, it could have something to do with my tendency to get annoyed and anxious in crowded places.  Seriously, what is the deal with the Moms with double wide strollers and five whining/crying/snottily sneezing, loud kids stopping smack dab in the middle of very crowded pathways to look at their park maps, talk to a friend, or chat on their phones? Do they think they are the only people in the park, or what?  In the midst of a very crowded section of Hollywood Studios-crowded as in shoulder to shoulder, feet to feet-happy music suddenly could be heard.  I was filled with a sense of dread, and overheard someone angrily say "If that's a parade coming this way, I think I might punch somebody!" Oh, wait....I guess *I* might have said that.  Sort of loudly.  That must have been why my husband looked at me in shock....

Maybe it's the cattle herding aspect-you know, walking slowly through intricately designed queing lines, or worse, being crowded into an open space, shoulder to shoulder with strangers, waiting to enter an auditorium or ride, while Cast Members with microphones  cheerfully command you to move closer together. "If you can see carpet between your feet, then you aren't close enough!" or "If you can't smell the person next to you, then you aren't close enough!", they sing out with a smile on their faces, as they usher in even more people to add to the herd of tourists speaking a wide variety of languages to their whining and crying children.  Then, the theater doors are opened, and suddenly, a swelling sea of humanity is pushing their way towards them, competitively squeezing out the less determined or organized among the herd.  I'm always afraid I'll lose a child in the charge, and I get a bit panicky.  And grouchy. I'll admit, Mickey's Philharmagic was pretty entertaining the first couple of times, but I really don't think it's worth all that stress.

Anyhow, we spent our first vacation day at Magic Kingdom. The park wasn't too crowded yet, and most of the lines weren't too bad.  My  kids, however, kept asking when we would go back to our rental house and swim and at least one of them complained everytime we got in line for a ride.  I found myself telling them "This is the Happiest Place on Earth, so smile and have fun, dangit!" Isn't this supposed to be a kiddie Mecca? Each year, we take them back, thinking that it will be different, and each year it is the same.  Sure, we do have some fun-it's not all whining, and crowds and complaints-but to them, Magic Kingdom is all about riding the Tea Cups, buying souveniers, and then going home to swim or play mini golf.  I guess my kids are cheap dates. Forget Disney, we should just rent a room at a local hotel with a pool, take them to play Putt Putt, and buy them a new Webkinz at Walgreens and be done with it for just about $100.

After doing other activities in the area for a few days(the beach-cold but fun, the Orlando Science Museum, visiting relatives, Downtown Disney, etc.), we went to Hollywood Studios.  It was crazy, can't move, can't stop and look at anything crowded.  We managed to have some fun, but many of the rides we wanted to do had lines with waits of two hours or more, and were out of Fast Passes, so a few meltdowns were had (the kids may have had a couple themselves), and we left the park disappointed.

The next day we went to Epcot.  I love Epcot, and apparently, so do my kids.  The rides are pretty much all hits with everyone, and they seem to enjoy walking around the "world", eating Churos, listening to musicians play in each country, and looking in the gift shops.  My daughter even had her picture taken with Mary Poppins-she loves that movie.  "Mary" was very sincere, she bent down to my daughter's level, put her hand under her chin and spoke to her very sweetly.  Then, she came over to us, and shook our hands.  It was all very convinving.  My husband kept saying with wonder, "Mary Poppins shook my hand!" To which my daughter would reply, "Dad, she's just an actress!" A lot of people were there too, but it seems that there is more room to spread out at Epcot-something my sanity definitely requires.The weather is always glorious whenever we are at Epcot-I guess it's just "our park".  Still not "magical", but good.

Anyhow, despite the crowds and chaos, we had a good vacation.  We do enjoy the Orlando area-I guess that's why we keep coming back.  Magic Kingdom may never seem "magical" enough for us, and Hollywood Studios is much more fun when there are fewer people there, but the sunshine, palm trees, and blue skies keep us coming back year after year.
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