Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Four Little Monkeys


You Are An Exclamation Point

You are a bundle of... well, something.

You're often a bundle of joy, passion, or drama.

You're loud, brash, and outgoing. If you think it, you say it.

Definitely not the quiet type, you really don't keep a lot to yourself.

You're lively and inspiring. People love to be around your energy.

(But they do secretly worry that you'll spill their secrets without even realizing it.)

You excel in: Public speaking

You get along best with: the Dash

Take the quiz and let me know what you are!

Monday, June 16, 2008


Well.....this started out being a most impressive pirate ship pool, with all the bells and whistles. Thanks, Gram!

The children were giddy with excitement and couldn't believe their good fortune. They had hit the mother lode of inflatable pools!

All the neighbors were eyeing it with open envy. I spotted one burrowed behind their front bushes with binoculars aimed our direction. Thou shalt not covet our pirate ship, people!

I had high hopes that this pool would entertain the gang until school started again in August ...... or at least until lunch time ...... however ......

We had no sooner inflated it, and filled it with water when the sides started sagging. They hadn't even set foot into it yet! Do the words "slow leak" pain you as much as they do us?

Here are 3 of my kids, basking in about 2 inches of water. They played Titanic until we deflated it all the way and returned it to the store. Oh well.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Happy Father's Day

I'd like to tell you about the father of my children.

When I fell in love with my hubby 16 years ago, I knew without a doubt that I had finally found the one God had saved just for me. Our life together has been eventful, with lots of moves and babies, but always facing it together as a team. On this Father's Day, I'd like to honor him and share all the reasons he is so loved.

He is so patient with me.
He truly tries to empathize with me, even when I KNOW I'm an irrational mess!
He's considerate and always listens (or at least pretends).
He works hard to provide for his family.
He is never critical of me.
He has the most beautiful blue eyes.
He makes us feel safe.
He'll join me in watching Food Network or other such nonsense.
He is dedicated and loyal like no other.
He is appreciative and full of words of affirmation.
He brings out the best in me.
He is a wholly devoted family man in whom we have complete trust.
He is NOT a quitter and is an eternal optimist.
He still makes me laugh, and laughs at my warped sense of humor.
He spends quality time with our kids, playing with them and taking them on doughnut dates nearly every weekend.
Most of all -- He is a man after God's own heart.
We are very blessed. Happy Father's Day, honey -- we love you very much!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

It's Official -- I'm Stressed Out

Long story short ..... (you know better than that with ME, don't you?) We are getting a new life insurance policy issued on me. Because we all know my vast net worth exceeds $13 and some change down in the sofa cushions.

The home office called me today to conduct a telephone interview with regard to this pending policy. I spent 19 minutes (yes, I kept track) saying "No" repeatedly to approximately 237 questions, that went something like this:

"No, I don't have a pre-existing history of Crohn's Disease."

"No, I haven't been referred to a rehab facility within the past five years."

"NO, I have never used a soiled hypodermic needle in New Guinea, at least not in the past five years...."

I had NO idea I was such an absolute stellar picture of health.

All was going swimmingly until ...... UNTIL ..... she asked if I was taking any prescription medications. Well, I've always been open about the fact that I'm practically the poster child for Zoloft, and was frankly stunned that she didn't recognize me as such.

All that aside, she proceeded to ask WHY the doctor prescribed it. Now I'm sure she was staring at her paperwork full of little boxes, one of which needed checked for "cause" or "diagnosis".

My reply was this: "I birthed four babies in less than six years, isn't that sufficient reason?"

Apparently that wasn't one of the "diagnosis" choices.

And then I offered this explanation, realizing that she must NOT have small children: "Zoloft helps hide my last nerve so it takes my kids just a little longer to find it".


And then ..... and THEN .... she suggested that the prescription was related to (and I quote) a mental health issue! I did NOT want her checking THAT box, friends!!! Although a quiet, padded room sounds appealing at times.

So we proceeded to debate over a proper diagnosis, such as post-partum depression, swimmer's ear and/or chronic yeast infection, and ultimately settled on plain old, generic STRESS.

Other than that, STELLAR. Such a specimen I am.
Now pass the Zoloft.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

America's Next Top Model

Meet our sole BOY, who was put up to this by all his sisters. Note the perfect accessory of tube socks. Can't wait to show this shot to his girlfriend some day! =)

It's a Beautiful Thing

I just had to share that we've had the best day. My sweet friend, Tonja, often uses the phrase, "it's a beautiful thing", regardless of what we're talking about. And I got to thinking, "this day has just been a beautiful thing." Quite simply a gift.

The kids are at such a fun age, where we're able to actually enjoy outings! What a nice change of pace.

Now, mind you, these are the same kids who recently shed blood over a random Wal-Mart receipt they all wanted. Other priceless items of desire that have been worth quite literally battling over: the Dole sticker off the bananas and a paper clip. Two separate incidents that involved much gnashing of teeth and clawing. I think we'd all agree -- NOT such a beautiful thing....

Anyway, today has been a pleasure, so let's focus on that blessing for a moment. We hit an early showing of Kung Fu Panda, which we highly recommend -- followed by lunch at Fazoli's, where we put a hurtin' on their endless bread sticks offer. They very well may be changing their bread stick policy as a result -- sorry.

The grand finale was a field trip of sorts to a cool local place called Cocoa Dulce', a fancy chocolate shop. The kids each got to choose a piece of chocolate or a scoop of gelato (how chic, eh?), and we sat at the counter and watched the chocolate being hand-crafted in front of our eyes. So fun!

On the drive home, the kids worked on Mad Libs that were printed on their Fazoli's placemats. It's so funny to sit back and listen to them trying to come up with words to fill in the blanks. Inevitably, the following favorites are offered up as options: snot, toilet, boogers, poop, booties (not the baby footwear), nose hairs, booger nugget (unlike ordinary run-of-the-mill boogers), and diahhrea. It would appear, the grosser the better is the prevailing rule of thumb.

We're so proud.

And we'll keep our Wal-Mart receipts, banana stickers and paper clips under lock and key. Because apparently, it's a beautiful thing.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Mother of the Year Nomination

You know, just when I start thinking I've got my act together, God is so faithful to remind me of what a numb skull I really am...... For example:

I was just remembering an incident a long, long time ago, like in the '80's ..... before I had developed the endless patience I now demonstrate with my children. Stop laughing.

On this particular day, the kids had found my last nerve and were subsequently camping there all afternoon. Jumping up and down on that last nerve like it was a Moon Walk. You know those days.

Those kids had me on the ropes, and I was frazzled! So I called my sweet hubby and asked him if we could meet him for dinner at our favorite pizza place. He agreed, and a time was set.

Something happened between our house and the pizza joint. All accounts point to the likelihood that mommy's last nerve snapped. Plain and simple.

The kids and I were literally pulling into the restaurant parking lot when my son unbuckled his seat belt, hopped up and stood between the captain chairs in the back of our Suburban and yelled, "HEY, look at me! I'm SURFING!"

Now any other day, I might have chuckled and found this amusing. But today ...... well, you know, it is well documented that my last nerve was shot.

Looking in my rear view mirror, I made a split second decision then and there to teach him a lesson about unbuckling his seat belt before the car was stopped. (can I insert here that he had been told repeatedly to stay buckled....)

So I did what I believe any other normal, rational mother would do. I ever-so-lightly tapped the brakes ..... never dreaming that as a direct result, his little body would become an instant, how shall I say ...... projectile.

Come to think of it, we practically got a science lesson thrown in there too. SCIENCE FAIR DAY, KIDS!

Unfortunately for Evan, he was lined up perfectly to land straight ahead into our vehicle's wooden TV/VCR cabinet. It all happened in s-l-o-w motion, and while he hung in mid-air for approximately 38 seconds, I had plenty of time to wallow in immediate regret. There was much resulting trauma and a humdinger of a bloody nose to deal with. He was okay, but I felt SOOOOO bad.

To this day, we can't pull into that parking lot without ONE (or all in unison) of my kids instantly recounting that story.

So we had a hands-on lesson about seatbelt safety and rocket science; but mommy got the biggest lesson of all that night ..... to not overreact in anger.

I did ask for his forgiveness, and then we prayed together. Not my proudest moment as a mommy, but I learned from it and continue on doing the best I can with these little ones God has entrusted to me.

Friday, June 6, 2008

A New Twist on an Old Joke

I came across this at http://realworldmartha.wordpress.com/2008/06/05/youre-gonna-love-this/ -- and had to share it with you!

Why DID that chicken cross the road?

BARACK OBAMA: The chicken crossed the road because it was time for a change! That chicken wanted change!

JOHN MC CAIN: My friends, that chicken crossed the road because he recognized the need to engage in cooperation and dialogue with all the chickens on the other side of the road.

HILLARY CLINTON: When I was First Lady, I personally helped that little chicken to cross the road. This experience makes me uniquely qualified to ensure - right from Day One! - that every chicken in this country gets the chance it deserves to cross the road.

GEORGE W. BUSH: We don’t really care why the chicken crossed the road. We just want to know if the chicken is on our side of the road, or not. The chicken is either against us, or for us. There is no middle ground here.

DICK CHENEY: Where’s my gun?

COLIN POWELL: Now to the left of the screen, you can clearly see the satellite image of the chicken crossing the road.

BILL CLINTON: I did not cross the road with that chicken. What is your definition of chicken?

JOHN KERRY: Although I voted to let the chicken cross the road, I am now against it! It was the wrong road to cross, and I was misled about the chicken’s intentions. I am not for it now, and will remain against it.

AL SHARPTON: Why are all the chickens white? We need some black chickens.

DR. PHIL: The problem we have here is that this chicken won’t realize that he must first deal with the problem on this side of the road before it goes after the problem on the other side of the road. What we need to do is help him realize how stupid he’s acting by not taking on his current problems before adding new problems.

OPRAH: Well, I understand that the chicken is having problems, which is why he wants to cross this road so bad. So instead of having the chicken learn from his mistakes and take falls, which is a part of life, I’m going to give this chicken a car so that he can just drive across the road and not live his life like the rest of the chickens.

NANCY GRACE: That chicken crossed the road because he’s guilty! You can see it in his eyes and the way he walks.

PAT BUCHANAN: To steal the job of a decent, hardworking American.

DR SEUSS: Did the chicken cross the road? Did he cross it with a toad? Yes, the chicken crossed the road, but why it crossed I’ve not been told.

ERNEST HEMINGWAY: To die in the rain, alone.

GRANDPA: In my day we didn’t ask why the chicken crossed the road. Somebody told us the chicken crossed the road, and that was good enough.

BARBARA WALTERS: Isn’t that interesting? In a few moments, we will be listening to the chicken tell, for the first time, the heart warming story of how it experienced a serious case of molting, and went on to accomplish its lifelong dream of crossing the road.

ARISTOTLE: It is the nature of chickens to cross the road.

JOHN LENNON: Imagine all the chickens in the world crossing roads together, in peace.

ALBERT EINSTEIN: Did the chicken really cross the road, or did the road move beneath the chicken?

COLONEL SANDERS: Did I miss one?

Thursday, June 5, 2008

The Time is Drawing Near ......

In less than two weeks we will be boarding an airplane, headed south for vacation. Even though I'm REALLY looking forward to it, it is paired with the distinct likelihood that I'll be seen in public in a swimsuit..... "Shield your eyes, children! And put away your camera, sir. Stop laughing, ma'am!"

But, all hope is not lost. There's still time to get in fighting shape, if I follow this strict work-out plan: Take a look and be ready to laugh! I'll be sure to post my "before" and "after" pictures.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Say what?!

OK, I thought perhaps my ears still needed checking -- Here's a little funny that happened today:

Evan was on the phone with his bestest buddy, Cameron, having a meaningful conversation that sounded like this from my vantage point: "No, YOU say something...... No, YOU say something....."

About 20 minutes in, Evan proceeded to put his hand over the receiver and enter into the following dialog with me:

Evan: Cameron wants to know if I can go to Janice's with him this afternoon.
Me: HUH?
Evan: Cameron is inviting me to go to Janice's. Is that OK?
Me: I don't know who that is.
Evan: JANICE'S! (because if he says it louder, I'll then realize who we're talking about)
Evan: It's NOT a person, it's an exercise place! (with sort of a "DUH, mom" tone....)

OK, smart boy -- the correct pronunciation is Genesis (Health Clubs)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Masseuse Is In

The Masseuse Is IN ...... NEXT !

Check my Ears While You're at it

Our oldest had a dental appointment today, to have her very first cavity filled. While in the waiting room, I distinctly heard a young girl say to her mom, clear as day, "Mom, you love wicked sex, don't you?"

My jaw dropped open.

It dropped open even more when I heard her mother reply, "Why yes, dear, I do!"

The girl then pulled out her little craft bag, I realized I had heard wrong. Terribly wrong. These are called Wikki Stix, which sounds remarkably like wicked sex, to those of us who are warped.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Put on Your Big Girl Panties and Deal With It

The following event happened at our house recently, which can only be described as most unsettling.

It seems there's a neighborhood boy who is crushing on my daughter. (who can blame him? she's a stone cold fox) But anyway ...... They are both in 3rd grade and ride the same school bus. I hardly know the kid, but he seemed OK. (although Holly's not interested)

So, this boy -- I'll call him Tim -- rang our doorbell recently and asked if Evan could play. Evan was flattered, as this was an older boy wanting his company.

They went straight to the basement, which houses a mother lode of toys, as well as the ping pong table and GameCube. They seemed to have a great time. I wish the story ended there.

The next day at school, Holly was teased mercilessly. You know why? It seems that "Tim" snuck into her bedroom (off the basement) and rummaged through her panty drawer while Evan was pre-occupied. He went straight to school the next day and told his 3rd grade buddies all about it. Yes, it's true. Does anyone else feel violated?

Holly came home from school SO embarrassed and in tears, telling me all this. Can I tell you that I felt a righteous anger rising inside?! My first instinct was to call that boy's mama!

We didn't have Tim's phone number, but knew which street was his. So I pulled out the phone book and hunted ..... and hunted ..... for their listing. (they have a common last name) I finally found a listing with the right last name and street -- and MADE myself dial the number. I usually avoid conflict, but when you mess with my kid, honey, I dig deep for a backbone!

My heart was thumping rapidly as I dialed and waited for an answer. I really hadn't thought through how exactly I was going to approach the topic or how the "other mother" might react ...... but when she said "hello" I started into my spiel which went something like this:

Me: Hi, I live the next street over and wondered if you have a son named "Tim"?
Her: Why, yes, I do.
Me: Well, Tim rides the school bus with my children and was over playing at our house yesterday.
Her: Silence.........
Me: And, um, we had a little problem.
Her: More Awkward Silence..........
Me: Were you aware that he was over at our house?
Her: Maybe I should tell you that my son Tim is 32 years old.
Me: OH, well perhaps I have the wrong number.....

THANK GOODNESS she spoke up before I launched into "your son is a pervert who rummages through young girls' panties" then tells all his friends!!!

I guess I'll have to go to Plan B and write a note, because all the shovels in the world couldn't dig up a backbone enough for me to actually ring their doorbell!