Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Wednesdays With Reesie

Ah, the joys of living with a 2-year-old. This morning, Reese came in the bathroom and asked for juice. I couldn't help but grin, because her hair was wild and she looked so precious. I said "Reesie, your hair is kind of crazy. Look at your hair!" I meant, of course, for her to turn around and look in the mirror. But, being the clever 2-year-old that she is, she literally looked at her hair. Or tried to. Check her out.

"I can't thee it!"

"My hair is not there, Momma. It not cay-zee."

Here she is later in the morning. After a huge battle over who would put her jeans on her (remember, she likes to do it her-telf!), I gave in. She put them on backward without unsnapping or unzipping them. I tried to help her, but of course, she said no. Actually, what she said was (all together now!)"I DO IT MY-TELF!" And I'll be danged if she didn't wear her jeans like this for at least an hour. She must have finally gotten uncomfortable enough to let me help her, because she came in and said "Momma, my pants are bo-ken."

I'll say they are broken. Sheesh, how stubborn do you have to be walk around wearing your jeans backward and halfway down for a solid hour before you ask for help?
I'll answer that for you: Very, very stubborn. Unusually, obsessively stubborn. Quietly, sweetly stubborn. Adorably, frustratingly stubborn.
I couldn't love her more.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

I've Still Got It

I was beginning to think my days of being included in the "attractive" and sometimes, even "Hot" category were totally over. Until this morning. I had to take AVery to school this a.m. and usually, I go in sweats, no makeup and a ball cap if my hair is extremely unruly. But this morning, since I have several things going on today, I showered, put on a bit of makeup and coordinated my clothing. I wore the general housewife pants, a tank and a sweatshirt...looks like you just worked out, but in reality, the outfit is a bit too nice to think of sweating in it. You know, that whole I-don't-care-how-I-look-but-I-spent-20 minutes-figuring-it-out outfit.
Anyway, I look decent today. And guess what? Someone flirted with me! Actually FLIRTED. I saw a really pretty house with a For Sale sign out front across from Avery's school and, out of curiosity, stopped to get a flyer to see the price. Two young, adorable in a blue collar way, city maintenance workers were standing outside the house. (I promise this isn't why I stopped. I didn't even notice that they were cute at first.)
As I got out of the car, one of them (the cutest one) said "Well, how much is the house?"
Me: "Is it a bad sign if it doesn't say how much?"
Cute worker guy: "I think so, but you look like you can afford it."
Me: "Really? That's funny because I don't have a job."
Cute worker guy: "Yeah, I can tell that too...and we could use more of your type in this area."
Me: (adorably flirtatious laughter) Oh, you are funny...sweet, but funny.

*Rhett begins to scream from the car and reality hits.*

Me: I gotta run of my three children is screaming at me.
Cute worker guy: You have three kids? Whoa (The other guy says something to him that I can't hear. I like to think it was "She's way too fine to have three kids.")
Me: Yeah, whoa is right.
Cute worker guy: You come back anytime, ok?
Me: (More giddy, silly laughter)
I get in the car and drive away before I can embarrass myself any further. I know it is desperate and stupid to grin like an idiot because a 25-year-old street worker flirted with me, but dangit, it feels good to be noticed. When you spend your days covered in spit-up and smelling of milk and poop, a brief moment of youth and hotness is a moment of sheer joy.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Speaking of waistlines....

Here's a picture of Angelina Jolie and one of her gazillion adopted kids found on some obscure celebrity gossip website. (Apparently, US Weekly isn't enough trash for me...I have to seek it out.)
The caption next to this picture read: "Angelina's bump...another baby or merely bloat?"

Seriously. They call this a bump. Possibly a BABY bump. Let me tell you something - my belly was bigger than this 5 minutes before I conceived each of my 3 children. Hell, it's bigger than this right now and my youngest is 8 months old. I would give my left arm (ok, I would only give the moles on my left arm) for a belly like that. If you want to see bloat, you should see me with PMS, 5 minutes after inhaling a Chipotle Steak Bowl...all of it in one sitting. Oh yeah. That's bloat.

First of all, if Angelina is pregnant again, I have two things to say:
1. Good Lord, woman, slow down...Kids are like puppies. They do grow up and become slightly less adorable and cuddly. And the more you have, the more you have hating you during their teenage years.
2. How many kids do you need to have to finally get fat and/or have visible stretch marks? Or frown lines? Or gray hair? Or even a husband, for crying out loud? (Uh oh, is my Oklahoma Bible Belt upbringing rearing it's ugly head?)

Ok, so that's alot more than 2 things to say, but these are the things that keep me up at night.
That and radar detectors. But that's a story (though not much of one) for another time.


Yes, that is me. In the white dress. With long hair. And a tiny waist.

TINY WAIST? ME? Are you kidding me?

I was cleaning out some boxes the other day and came across this picture. Forget what is going on in the picture. Forget the dress, the long hair, the tiara. (For the record, it's not that hard to become Homecoming Queen in P-town...and it doesn't hurt if your dad is the head football coach.) No, let's just look for a moment at that waistline. How did it ever get that small? I do remember when the dress came back after being altered, it was a bit tight. I must have been bulking up for the big day because the dress wouldn't zip when I tried it on a week before I was to prance around the football field for all of P-town to observe. I also distinctly remember starving myself all week before Homecoming, only eating grapes and saltine crackers in order to squeeze into said dress.

Do you know what would happen now if I ate nothing but saltines and grapes? Me either, because it would never happen unless someone told me they would take my children away unless I could wear a size 6 dress, but let's just pretend for a second. Besides the occasional fainting that most certainly would occur, I imagine there would be a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth. I envision my husband suddenly having to work late every night and the children huddling in the corners of their rooms. I see myself slipping in and out of consciousness, seeing the grapes and crackers as Snickers and pizza and then screaming like a banshee when the truth set in. It wouldn't be a good situation.

But back to 1989. From what I recall, I was as pleasant as any 17-year-old. Possibly more pleasant considering I was Homecoming Queen and probably very proud of it. I think I was happy to be starving myself because it was for a good cause. The most important of all causes back then...vanity and popularity.

Frankly, I'll take my love handles, sagging boobs and cottage cheese behind over that skinny girl any day. I have a life now.

Oh jeez, isn't this what every computer nerd says when they realize they are no longer attractive enough to "play" in the real world, so they spend their days hiding behind a monitor?

Uh oh. Maybe I'll eat just a few grapes. And a little less pizza. :)

Saturday, January 26, 2008


I am in serious need of some help. I can't get motivated. I want so badly to run the OKC Half Marathon with my brother and his sister-in-law in April, but I can't seem to motivate myself to train the way I need to be training. Granted, I haven't been running more than 2-3 miles since I had children. But before I got married, I ran a full 26.2 mile marathon and even after marriage, spent many Saturdays running around the lake, 9.3 miles. So it's not that I don't like to run. Or that I'm scared of the mileage. I don't think I'm just lazy. I'll do my workout DVD's and go to the gym most days of the week. It's almost as if I have a mental block against running for some reason.

When I was younger, my dad had this big dirt pile in our backyard. Our backyard was large, therefore, we had room for such things. I still don't know what the dirt pile was for, but from time to time, Dad would yell at the boys, "Let's go outside and move that dirt pile." For a couple of hours after that, they would shovel the dirt from one side of the yard to the other. I have no idea why. I don't think anyone knows. And we aren't supposed to ask.

What's the point of that little story? The point is, that right now, I'd rather be out there moving an unexplained pile of dirt from one location to the other for no apparent reason, than running the measly 4 miles on my agenda for today. I know I will be mad at myself if April comes and goes and I miss the run.
For now, I'm going to to see what these dedicated running freaks have to say. But if you have any words of advice on how to get excited about this, I need to hear it. Please. Help me. Save me from my boring gym-DVD-housewife workouts and get me back out on the road.

Thursday, January 24, 2008


Have you ever seen anything more determined than a 2-year-old? If you let it get to you, it can really try your patience. But, more often than not, it's quite hilarious. I love to let Reese assert her independence as often as I can. According to experts in child development, it's good for her to feel like she can do things by herself. And, hey, if nothing else, it's cheap entertainment.

Here she is, putting on her pajamas. She's getting pretty good at pants. I'd say she had those licked in less than 10 minutes this time. But the shirt. That's a whole different ball game.

(I offer to help before she even gets started)

"No, Momma. I do it my-telf."

Wait. Let me get another look at this thing.

I know it's a shirt. I think my head goes in here somewhere. But where?

Ha! I know what this is! This is the sleeve. My head won't fit there. I've tried it before.

Here's the hole thingy. My head goes in here! I knew I could do it.

See, Momma? I don't need any help.

Ah, yes. Piece of cake. No problem.

Now the sleeve and we're done.

Wait. Did I miss something here? Something is wrong with this shirt. This can't be right. First neckhole, then sleeve, right?

Yeah, that's it. I got it. Thought I lost it for a second, but nope. I'm right on track. So what if it's taken me 15 minutes to get this far?

Ok, on to sleeve two. Something still seems a bit off, but I'll work that out later.

What the...? How did this happen?

This has gone horribly wrong. It wasn't supposed to be this way. I'm two. I can do this. I can do this my-TELF!!!

(5 full minutes later)

This is definitely more frustrating than I expected.

Ok, this feels wrong. It feels really wrong, but this has to be it. Right? I will not give in. I will not give up. I am two.

Oh yeah, I got this. Told you I could do it.

Ta da! Told you I could do it. I'm TWO, after all.

And you were worried!

By the way, in case you were wondering, I like to wear my shirts inside out. This was totally how I meant for it to be. And so what if it took me 25 minutes just for the shirt? I'm dressed, aren't I? And the important thing is...I did it MY-TELF!!!

Life's Darkest Moment

For a four-year-old who loves "boy stuff," this is one of life's darkest moments. (I am aware she will someday kill me for taking and posting this picture.) Wearing girl clothes. This is her "punishment" for the Night from Hell last night. Here's a brief synopsis of last night's events:

9:15 Sweet husband is in the girls' room, reading and putting them to bed. Rhett is in bed with me because he has a terrible cough and cold and can't seem to lay anywhere, so I'm holding him on my chest so he can rest.

10:30 I'm trying to go to sleep, but my nose is now running and I can't even think about sleeping with snot coming out of my left nostril. I rotate to the other side and it gets worse.

10:45 I get up, pop a couple of Benadryl and get back in bed. My getting up has awakened Rhett, but he quickly falls back to sleep. Husband shows soon after. All is well.

Midnight Avery makes her first appearance in our room, crying. I tell her she needs to go back to her bed and she tries to bulldog her way into the bed and on top of her brother. He is awakened and I am mad. Husband takes Avery to her room. She is screaming all the way.

12:03 Avery is back. Screaming louder than ever. Rhett is now crying. I tell her, through gritted teeth, to march herself back to her room and don't come back. She goes.

12:05 She comes back. I tell her to leave. She leaves.

12:06 Back in her room, she is still screaming, which wakes her sister. Which angers me further. I go into their room to calm Reese. When all seems quiet, I go back into my own bed.

12:10 Avery is back. Wants in our bed. She has no idea how much trouble she is in. Either that, or she doesn't care. I send her back. She goes down the hall, screaming. Rhett is now in our bed crying, Reese is awakened again and screaming. I go back to the girls' room. Avery gets a swat.

12:20 I am back in my bed, all is quiet. I don't hear from anyone for a while.

3:00-ish Rhett is awake, coughing and I am awake with a runny nose. Dangit. I am sleepy. Somehow, I doze off.

5:30 Both girls are in their bed, screaming. Husband goes to them and comes back asking me why their bed is wet. Having been in a dead sleep and pretty sure I didn't' go into their room and soak it, I say "I have no clue." He goes back to the room, comes back to report that, although it doesn't smell like tee-tee, it may be a leaky diaper. He returns to the girls' room, strips the bed and puts a new comforter on it. They are settled.

5:45 Both girls are in our room. Husband returns them to their bed.

5:47 Girls are back. Husband goes to shower and get ready for work. Girls are settled in my bed, somewhat. They are sort of fighting over who will lay next to me and then I clue them in that I have no desire to be next to either of them. I realize my bed is also wet. Rhett's diaper has also leaked. What are the chances of two kids, whose diapers rarely leak, both leaking in the same night? Not sure, but I wish I had bought a lottery ticket last night.

6:30 Everyone is up, bathing. I am washing sheets. Avery is excited to be taking a bath "in the middle of the night." I am not excited about washing sheets in the middle of the night. At all.

This brings us to now. Avery has been punished. If she is not responsible and grown up enough to sleep all night in her own bed at four and a half years old, for crying out loud, then she isn't responsible and grown up enough to pick out her own clothes. Which means I get to choose her outfits. Which means I choose panties instead of boxers and pink sweats for camo cargo pants. Ahhhh, sweet revenge.

Note to all single parents out there: God bless you all. If I had to do last night alone, I'm afraid I would have gone Mommie Dearest on these kids.

Note to my husband: You rock. I couldn't do it without you.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Ladies' Man

Check out this Hunka-Hunka-Burnin'-Love enjoying a hot soak in Auntie Em's sink getting a good scrub by his Aunt La-La.

"Hey, Baby. You. Me. Hot tub."

"Heh-heh. Hugh Hefner's got nothing on me."

I Am A Little Bit Shallow

I've had the "shallow thought" before, but usually, it's a distant bell in the back of my mind that is easily dismissed. I remind myself that I do volunteer work when I can, I donate to charity when I can, I read meaningful novels, I research yoga, meditation and things of a spiritual nature. I am a deep thinker much of the time. I love to get in all-night conversations about marriage, kids, childhood and life in general. I like to analyze other people's, as well as my own, actions and words, delving into the possible deep-seated, psychological reasons for said behaviors. I don't sleep well at night because of all my thoughts. I struggle with depression at times. And everyone knows that anyone who struggles with depression does so because they are incredibly deep and intellectual. Ok, maybe that was a bit over the top.

Here's the point. I don't consider myself a shallow, selfish person. Sure, I like to look nice when I go out, but I spend most of my days in sweats, with no makeup. I like nice things, but I'm not worried about having more/better than anyone else. I've never really understood women who didn't take time to take care of their hair and skin, or wear attractive clothes. I don't think there's anything wrong with them, I just don't get it. I can be as sloppy and unkempt at home as the next person, but if I'm going out in public, I'm not going to wear flip-flops or sandals with unpolished toes and dry, cracked heels. (That's partly vanity and partly my contribution to society because there is nothing more unappealing on a woman than crusty feet and skanky toenails.) I don't have to wear makeup to the grocery store or to my girlfriend's house for a short chat, but I will shower, put on makeup and style my hair if I'm invited to any dinner, happy hour, or social occasion.

So, I'm sure you can understand my shock and dismay when the thought "Oh jeez, I am really shallow," no longer a distant whisper, came blaring into my stream of consciousness. It happened just a while ago, while I was painting mine and the girls' toenails. I had just finished showering and moisturizing my face with new Sephora samples and decided to sit and do my nails. I already cleaned the living room, did three loads of laundry, jogged on the treadmill and did a few strength exercises and felt I deserved a so-burgundy-they-are-black toenails, it hit me. I felt great. This is not an abnormal thing, to be sure, but you have to understand that I've been super down lately. I've even been wondering if, perhaps, I was having late-onset post-partum depression. It's not like I'm locking myself in the bathroom, crying all day or anything, but if someone would take my kids for a day, I might just spend the entire time in bed, wallowing in my own misery. The fact that there is absolutely not one iota of misery to be found in my life proves that it must be some sort of depression. It's not my first go-round with depression. I started taking Lexapro when I had panic attacks over having to return to work after having Avery. So I've upped the Lexapro recently, to no avail. I've read self-help books. I joined a website about finding your spiritual self. I ordered books on meditation and daily "self-esteem boosters." Nothing has worked. The holidays are over and a huge negative influence in my life has recently been virtually eliminated.

Anyway, the question is not why I've been so down lately, but why did I suddently become so "up" today? I asked myself that very question. I said to myself, "Self, why am I happy now when I haven't been able to get happy in more than a month?" Myself responded with, "Because you are pampering yourself and making yourself pretty." Yikes. Can I honestly say that putting a ritzy moisturizer on my face and painting my toes is better than hugs and kisses from my precious babies? I wouldn't trade any of those hugs and kisses for, say, the new youth cream from Bliss. I WOULD NOT!!! No, it's not that it makes me happier, but it does give me a different boost. It's a selfish happy. The feeling that you get when you know you look good and that, in turn, makes you feel good. The boost you get when you've done something only for your own happiness or pleasure. It's not a dire need and it doesn't benefit anyone but you. A lot of people frown on this type of indulgence. But I have decided that I think it's necessary. Maybe not for everyone, but obviously, it is for me.

Since acceptance was my New Year's Resolution, I'm just going to accept that I'm a bit shallow at times. And selfish. I will accept that, in order to be fully happy and cheerful, I'm going to need a little pick-me-up in the form of beauty supplies every once in a while. I think it will make me a better wife and mother in the long run. If you're happy with yourself, after all, you can be happy anywhere, right?

Oh yeah, and look at this:

I just got this in the mail from Sephora. I bought something online just so I could get this Super Skin Care Sample pack...there are like, 30 samples of skin care junk. I'm in Heaven.

Yeah, just a little shallow.

Monday, January 21, 2008


Whew! What is it about driving all day that just wears me out? I've done nothing but wake up, shower, and then ride/drive from Oklahoma. It's normally a 4 1/2 hour trip. With three children it's 5-6 hours. When you have to go through OKC to pick up and drop off husband, it's closer to 6 1/2 hours. We just got home and I'm tired.
I went to an old friend's father's funeral this weekend. Actually, my friend used to be my best friend. We hung out together constantly throughout high school and part of college. Because of stupidity, selfishness and general girls being girls, we had a couple of incidents that led to the eventual loss of that friendship. But I still felt as though I wanted to be there when I found out that her dad died. Her dad was one of the kindest men I know. I was a mess in high school and didn't always have the best relationship with my own father, so I was always amazed at the gentle nature and closeness of L.'s dad. Anyway, I went to the funeral. And I'm glad.
I got to see my friend and her family, which was nice. I spent the weekend with my brother, Josh and his wife, Emily. I love, love, love being at their house. It's casual and perfect and lazy and fun all at the same time. The only thing wrong with it is that they don't have internet. Or maybe that's why I love it so much. I had withdrawals, but it was nice to just be for a couple of days. I love Oklahoma. I love my life here, but there is just something about going home. I'm glad I am able to share both sides of my life with my children. There is no place like home. And it's worth the sore back, cranky kids, and exhaustion that come from the long trip there. I'm already looking forward to the next time.

Friday, January 18, 2008


Why do I save leftovers? Do I honestly think that anyone is going to eat them? I know I'm not. Well, except for the Weight Watchers Taco Soup, second from the bottom. I ate that until I couldn't stand to even hear the words Weight Watchers, taco, or soup. But really, did I think my husband, the veggie-hater (or anyone else for that matter), was going to grab that top bowl and go to town on leftover green beans? What about the Italian style meatballs I had leftover from spaghetti and meatballs? Who is going to eat meatballs without the spaghetti?
Then there's the bowl of Little Smokies in BBQ sauce. Great appetizer, for sure, but I rarely find myself sitting around thinking, "Man, I wish we had some Little Smokies in the fridge." And the bottom bowl? Delicious the first time around, but leftover pasta is usually not as good reheated. And I'm the only one who liked it in the first place because it contains spinach and tomatoes.
I guess I know why I save them. So I don't feel wasteful. But is it any less wasteful to throw them out a week or two later than it is to just toss them in the first place? You save fridge space, plus you don't have to wash the plastic containers.
That's it. I'm taking a stand. No more saving leftovers unless it's something I know I'm going to need or want again. Never.
Ok, my next question is this: Why did I waste mine and everyone else's time writing about leftovers? Because I'm leaving for Oklahoma today and I am in a hurry and I got irritated when I realized I had umpteen bowls to clean before I left.
Sorry to bother you with the mundane details of my life. It won't happen again.
Yeah, right.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Doctor Day

Today was Doctor Day at Avery's school. I had no idea what this entailed, exactly, but the note said "Please send your child to school wearing a white t-shirt, or scrubs if you have them. Anything that looks like doctor's clothing is fine."

Ok, well, I have some scrubs. I tied the shirt up so it would fit. That seemed kinda boring though. Then I remembered the white jacket from the dress-up bin. It's what the Kindergartner used to use for doctor's clothing. We took a magnet name tag and put a sticker over it and wrote "Dr. Avery Jackson." We filled her little tool kit with gauze, Band Aids, medicine syringes and a pill bottle filled with dried fruit. Then, inspiration really hit, and I tied her bicycle reflector to a Velcro strap and made a head lamp out of it. It was nothing short of spectacular, if I do say so myself.

So, this morning, we wake up, totally excited and ready for school. Avery balked at wearing her coat because she didn't want to disturb or cover up her doctor ensemble. I force her to wear it, but I allow her to remove it the second we walk into the school doors. She struts, literally, into her classroom and guess what? Everyone else is wearing a plain white Hanes t-shirt. Only one child had anything other than a top on. A little boy had a "Doctor in Training" scrubs top, but that's as elaborate as it got. Except for Avery. There she is, wearing a doctor coat and a headlamp, carrying a doctor bag and all the other kids look like they are there for art day or something, just covering up their clothes. Avery's teacher made a big production out of Avery's outfit, exclaiming how much like a doctor she really looked. She even told her she could keep her doctor bag with her all day. I don't know if Avery even noticed that no one else was so dressed up.
All I could think of was being in 3rd grade and wearing this elaborate Strawberry Shortcake costume my mom made (sewed from scratch, thank you very much) with an ENORMOUS big hat for Halloween and then getting to school and seeing that everyone was wearing totally plain, obscure outfits, like a hobo or ghost costume that could easily be removed or passed off as regular clothing. I was mortified. I couldn't really even remove the hat b/c it was stuffed so full with puffy foam stuff. This morning, I felt that same turn in my stomach when I realized that we were the only dorks who really went all out on the doctor thing. But then I looked at Avery's face. All I could see was pride. Shiny, excited pride. I felt a slight pang of regret at the thought that this very well may be the last time she allows me to strap a bicycle reflector to her head. Next year, she'll be at "the big school," where there are big kids around to tell you how silly and uncool you are.
She probably won't always be proud to be the one standing out or being different. Maybe when she's fourteen and comes to me and says "Everyone else does it," I'll bust out this photo and remind her that, once upon a time, she was proud to be different than everyone else. She was herself. And there is nothing in this world better than that.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

'ppropriate TV

Avery's been doing a little artwork.

This is her description of what she drew: "It's a TV show. You know, a 'ppropriate (she means inappropriate) show. They are saying naughty words and just doing, like, grown-up stuff and being ugly to each other. I know I can't watch it, but I just drew it."

There you have it. If there is something you want to do, but you know it's wrong, just draw a picture of it. It's the next best thing.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

He's Brilliant!

Look at him. He is clapping. What's so great about that, you say? He's clapping because I said "Pat-A-Cake." Any time I say that to him, he begins to clap. If you don't think that's great, then you are just being mean. I refuse to accept that this could possibly be normal 8-month-old behavior. I choose to believe he is brilliant. I also believe he gets it from me.

Reese, on the other hand, is the spitting image of her father. Here she is in the backyard. Eating dirt.

Oh well, two out of three ain't bad!

Monday, January 14, 2008


Yesterday, I was clipping coupons from the Sunday paper and decided that I might as well read part of the paper. You know, so it wouldn't go to waste and so I could learn stuff and all. Anyway, I got the Living section out first because it's the one with Dear Abby and the puzzles. Before I moved on to the New York crossword that I could never in a million years complete, I read the Miss Manners column. I like to think I already have manners, but you learn something new every day, right? Yeah, apparently.
Here is the question from someone who obviously has waaaaaayyyy too much time on her hands:

"The other day, I was in a bathroom at a restaurant and to find out whether a stall was occupied, I knocked on the door. The response was a muffled "Excuse me...
What is the proper response to a knock on a bathroom door? My feeling is that the woman had every right to be in that stall, so there should have been no need to excuse herself. My mother taught me to say the very obvious, 'Someone's in here'."

Are you kidding me? Did someone really take the time to write this letter. As if she is trying to point out that the woman in the stall was wrong for saying "excuse me?" Is there ever an inappropriate time to say "excuse me?" I mean, really, can you ever be faulted for saying polite words like that? And why in the world would Miss Manners print this question? Is there anyone else in the world who would be interested in the answer? (By the way, the answer did chastize the lady for trying to assign blame to this poor woman who just wanted to be left alone on the dadgum toilet.) Is the letter-writer going to take this article, walk around the mall with it, just waiting for that classless wench from the stall so she can once and for all show that her what an idiot she was for saying "excuse me?"
What a complete waste-of time, print, and my eye muscles.

Ok, so now I'm wasting your time too. But what I have to say is important. And people like to know this stuff. And have their flaws pointed out. Right? Right? Hello?

Saturday, January 12, 2008

What Does it Mean?

What does it mean when you are a 35-year-old mother of three, hosting a perfectly lovely neighborhood Bunco party and an old friend calls you to tell you she's at a concert and someone is talking about a bar you used to frequent and it reminded her of you?
To be precise, my phone rang, I didn't recognize the number, but knew from the area code it was from Oklahoma. I said to my guests in a politely confused voice, "Excuse me, this is someone from Oklahoma, which is where my family is, so I probably need to get this." Yeah, not so much.
I think I know who it was, but since she was at a concert, I couldn't hear her voice too well. I just can't imagine who else it was. She was yelling (and all of my Bunco guests could hear her), "I'm at the George Strait concert and the girl next to me wants to go to the Wormy Dog and I thought of you!" If it's the friend I think it was, we spent quite a bit of time on at the Wormy Dog. In fact, I spent so much time there that, when I walked in, whoever was behind the bar would slam a Bud Light down on the bar before I could even order. And once, when my dad came to town to see me and I wasn't at home, he went to the Wormy Dog to find me. Apparently, the guy working the bar told Dad, "Oh, she doesn't usually come until later." (I'm sure Dad was so proud of his baby girl at that moment.)
I did love the Wormy Dog. It was a hot, dirty little upstairs bar with saddles for barstools and peanuts all over the floor. I would go on a Wednesday night for penny beer or on a Saturday afternoon in cutoffs to play pool. I never went by myself, but even if I had, I wouldn't have been alone once I got there. It was like the country version of Cheers to me. Sadly, I guess I was Norm. Only not as fat. Not then, anyway.
So what does this mean? I hope it means that I'm a nice, respectable wife and mother who used to really like to have a good time. I choose to believe it just means that the words "Wormy Dog" remind my friend of all the fun we had there instead of thinking that I could very well have been a trashy barfly. Of course, even if I was a trashy barfly in college, that was over 10 years ago. I'm certainly not like that now. I don't even go to bars anymore. Ok, so I still like to have a good time. But I don't get bucked off of a barstool anymore and I don't wake up with peanut shells in my bra. I don't drink on Monday nights anymore. And I haven't done drunken karaoke in a really long time. Oh wait, ok, yeah, we did do that on Christmas a few years ago. But that was with family.
Um, ok, I'm really digging myself a hole here, huh? I guess I have now figured out the answer to my original question. I think it means I need to learn to knit or do needlepoint, cleanse my soul, spend more time in church, and don't answer the phone after 10:00 anymore.

Friday, January 11, 2008


My oldest, Avery, is notoriously bossy. It makes complete sense because, a) she's a miniature version of me and I am fairly bossy myself and b) she's the oldest of three. When you are the oldest (I'm the oldest of four), you have to be "responsible" for your younger siblings. You have to "set a good example" all the time and keep them out of trouble. The Catch-22 here is that you really can't win when you are the oldest. Your parents expect you to be their eyes and ears when they aren't there, but then you have to sit back and be a kid when they are there. And let's not forget that the younger siblings almost never make it easy on the oldest to be responsible or mature.

I think it's fair to say that I understand Avery's predicament. Since Reese was born we've had the "who is the boss?" conversation at least 2,000 times. This morning was 2,001.
She said "Mom, why do you always get to be the boss of everything and just do whatever you want? Like you get two waffles and me and Reese just got one?"

(Thought: Because I'm a fatty) Actual words: Because I'm a grown up. Do you want another waffle?

Avery: No, I'm full. But when I'm big, I'm going to do whatever I want.

Me: Ok, that sounds good.

Avery: Like when I'm sixty-ninety-four?

Me: Sure, or maybe when you are twenty-one.

Avery: Ok. Can I be the boss of Reese when I'm twenty-one?

Well, here's the problem with that. She'll be nineteen and probably won't let you be the boss of her.

Avery: Well, I think I'll still boss her.

Me: Ok, you can try it when you are twenty-one and see what happens.

Avery: Ok, I'll try. I'm going to go practice, ok?
I bet you can imagine how that turned's proof of how unappreciative younger siblings actually are. It's as if Reese has no concept of Avery's dilemma at having to help raise her into a decent human being. God bless the oldest child.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Britney Spears

Yeah, I'm jumping on this bandwagon. But not to gossip about her or laugh at her or even to criticize her. I'm here to (gasp!) defend Britney Spears.

I don't think that she's been the best mother ever. I don't think she has proven to the public or to the court system that being a mom is number one on her priority list. I do think, however, that she has been unfairly judged and scrutinized. I also think that denying even visitation is way, way to harsh and frankly, I don't think that would ever happen to her if she wasn't in the public eye. Consider this: Michael Jackson has been accused numerous times of molesting children and yet his children have never been removed from his custody. Mel Gibson got a DUI, but he still has his kids. Danny Bonaduce was shown on TV shooting up drugs and destroying his house in fits of rage. His children stayed in the home. The courts ruled that Britney was not allowed to drink within 12 hours of getting her kids. Where were the kids on New Year's Day? I would assume they were in Federline's custody, who was seen with Paris Hilton on New Year's Eve holding a bottle of Jack Daniel's in his hand. Maybe it was just a prop, but I kind of think he may have been drinking. Why is he allowed to drink but Britney isn't? I'm not advocating drinking around your children, I'm just pointing out the descrepancies and saying that I don't think that the fact that someone drinks makes him or her an unfit parent.

I think the court system was correct in stating that Britney couldn't drive with the kids. She ran a red light and has a history of putting her kids in the car incorrectly. But here in Texas, a woman was breastfeeding her child and speeding while driving. She was fined for not properly restraining her child, but as far as I know, the child is still in her custody.

I have a friend who works as a social worker. A dad who was found guilty of sodomizing his toddler is still allowed visitation. Supervised, to be sure, but is still allowed visitation. Britney doesn't get to see her kids AT ALL anymore because she had a meltdown at her own home. The child wasn't physically harmed and Brit was found to have been clean of any drugs, prescription or otherwise.

Clearly, this girl is in trouble. She needs some serious help. She either needs a psychiatrist, a physician, or a swift kick between the pockets to knock some sense into her spoiled little brain. But I feel sorry for her. Every time I see a story outlining her latest meltdown, I am thankful that there were no cameras or reporters around when I was 26. And I'm thankful that I wasn't a mother then, because I doubt I would have been a good one. I was way too selfish. I probably would have, occasionally, put my own wants and needs before my children. I might have wanted to go out and party if I got a divorce (which I most certainly would have been had I married the first boy I was engaged to).

And why do so many people seem to hate her and almost find enjoyment in her pain? Sheesh, her skin is 1000 times thicker than mine, because my crazy, head-shaving, bathroom-door-locking meltdown would have happened much, much earlier.

All I'm saying is (in the words of Chris Crocker), "LEAVE BRITNEY ALONE!"

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

I Dare You.... be in a bad mood after seeing this picture. I don't think it's possible. Ok, maybe you can, but I can't. Seriously, how could I ever be unhappy when this is what I pick up at school in the afternoon?
I couldn't capture on film the "handome boy" strut she had going on as we walked out of the school, but I still think you get the idea when you see the cowboy boots, her favorite "blue and kinda black shirt with the horse on it like Daddy's," the paper chef's hat, created for a special cupcake-making activity at school. Oh yeah, and the "I Love God" ribbon that we can't remember why we made. "I guess just because we just love God, Mom." Sheesh, dumb can you be?

I love the total package. I love that she has on Nicole Richie-style skinny jeans, but instead of ballet flats, she chose cowboy boots. I love that she LOVES this Polo shirt because her dad wears Polo shirts. I love that she talks in a deep voice when she's dressed like this. I love that she is so secure in herself that she thinks this is actually a good look and wouldn't believe you if you told her any different. She told me, "I just felt like being handsome today, so I am." There you have it.

Girls' Weekend

Is there anything better than time with "just the girls?" I mean, I love my husband and kids and enjoy time with them, but I have come to believe that it is essential to a woman's happiness to have "girl time." Honestly, I don't know what people do without girlfriends, moms and sisters.
Last weekend, my mom and sister drove down to see me. They were actually coming to pick up some of our old baby stuff (boo more babies for me!) because my sister is pregnant (woo hoo) and starting an in-home daycare so we unloaded as much stuff as we possibly could without shortchanging our own babies. It was to be a short trip, so we decided not to try to cram in a bunch of activities in the one full day they were here. We thought a "Day of Beauty" would be a great way to pass the time and be together. We agreed no makeup would be worn all day Saturday (not abnormal for my sister and I, almost unheard of for my mother, who wouldn't be caught dead at the local grocery store or even lying on her own couch sans makeup). I made us pedicure appointments for 10:30 that morning. Mom's treat. I never get pedicures anymore and I think this is possibly the only thing missing in my life. There is just something about sitting in a spa chair with someone at your feet, massaging and moisturizing, that makes you feel like royalty. I must say, I felt a little less royal when the poor boy doing my pedicure had to work like a sled dog to clean my feet. Jeez, I had no idea what a filthy person I was. I had black toenail polish on when I got there and I told him I didn't want any polish. "Just clean them up and try to get some of that icky yellow off." He said "I do best I can, but that black polish make them very yellow." Yeah, I got it. I knew getting the yellow stain off might take some work. What I didn't consider was that black polish conceals dirt very well. And apparently, I'm very dirty. I don't know where I have been lately to get this much junk under my toenails, but this poor guy cleaned under my nails and buffed them for well past what can be considered normal cleaning time for a pedicure. In fact, my sister was already being sanded by the time he finished. I was embarrassed.
But then I looked over at Mom, who was one heel callous away from having the Black & Decker sander brought out. That lessened my embarrassment. In fact, my sister was mid-manicure and I was relaxing in the spa chair with freshly cleaned, white toes when they finally got to the point where they could paint Mom's toes. Mom wanted to match her fingernails, which she has done in Oklahoma. They knew the color. It's called "Smokin' in Havana" but they called it "Smokin' Hot Havana." And, according to the shop owner, it's a color that "They have for like five, six years, but nobody wear." I'm not sure why this was such an important point, but they told us several times. All of the workers were spinning in circles, repeating these words "She want Smokin' Hot Havana...we have it, but don't use it." And the girl trying to open the bottle made a very obvious show of how difficult it was to open. I'm not sure if toenail polish colors go out of style, but if it does, "Smokin' Hot Havana" is apparently, 'out' in Texas. They had to use polish remover, alcohol, and finally, brute force to get the bottle open. I couldn't even look at my mother without laughing. I think the fact that most of the nail shops in our area are owned by Asians is part of the hilarity. Not because I'm a bigot who thinks Asians are, by nature, funny. No, it's because the whole time you sit there, they speak to one another in their native tongue. As they should. But you just know they are discussing the huge, filthy American who took 30 extra minutes just for cleaning. Or the Oklahoman who wears completely outdated polish. I wish I had taken pictures, but I knew Mom would rather die than have her picture posted on the Internet with no makeup.
My sister is the only one who sat there, completely normally clean, not asking for weird, old-fashioned polish. (For the record, Mom, your polish is gorgeous and perfectly "in," so don't worry.) So, because I'm a bratty, attention-hogging first-born, who can't stand it when the baby gets to shine, here's her dirty ear wax.

After all, what's a Day of Beauty without a little ear-candling? I didn't fall for it, but my sister did. Actually, she jumped on it. Mom had these ear candles in her bag and offered to flame the dirt out of our ears. Apparently, she bought them to use on her boyfriend (you didn't think she wore Smokin' Hot Havana for her health, did you?) and he was a bit apprehensive. I can't imagine why.
I mean, what's odd about burning an open flame above your hair in order to vacuum out ear wax? I can't think of a thing that could go wrong here.
Actually, nothing did go wrong. My sister's equilibrium is fine. (Well, as fine as it ever was. We are notoriously clumsy for girls.) And we are all fresh-footed, hair-conditioned, and face-purified. It was a wonderful weekend. Because, besides all of the pampering and self-beautifying, we had some really great, much-needed chats.
That's what I love about being a girl. Chatting and getting pretty.
Mom and La-La, I miss you already! Come back soon!!!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Tired. A Poem

I Am Tired...

of bedtime battles

of kids who won't eat

of tattle-tales

of sibling rivalry

of kids who won't share

of whining

I Am Not Tired...

of sweet hugs and wet kisses

of endearing voices that say words wrong

of being having three buggles to snuggle with

of innocent laughter

of the most precious faces I've ever seen

of loving so much it hurts inside

Saturday, January 5, 2008

I Hate Peanuts

I hate peanuts.

Not this kind...

Or this kind...

I hate this kind of peanuts:

Seriously, why do they make these? They aren't good for the environment. They are a complete and total mess. They stick to whatever they touch. Besides, there are other choices. Better choices. There is bubble wrap. Fun to pop, easy to clean. And newspaper (that needs to be recycled anyway). Or tissue paper. Or another box. Or anything else on this whole planet besides styrofoam packing peanuts.

Oh sure, I could just throw the box and all away. But my kids love them. Which is a big part of the problem. My stupidity is the other part of this problem. When Avery asked me yesterday "Mom, can we just break these up into the box? We won't make a mess," I bought it. I said yes. I guess I forgot about her deceptive habits these days. I also forgot that her 2-year-old sister never made any type of promise to me.

But forget what they said or didn't say. Why on earth would any normal, rational-minded mother let her children play in a box of packing peanuts? In a somewhat clean, already-vacuumed-once-today living room? WHY?????

Because I'm stupid. And it kept my kids occupied while I took a shower and dried my hair.
Was it worth it? Not really. It took twice as long to clean the living room as it did for the solo bathroom time I scored.

I'm sure a lot of you are thinking "But, at least you got a package! You can be excited that you had something to open. And who cares what kind of mess the peanuts make when you are digging into the box to find an exciting, new purchase?" Normally, I might agree with you. Not this time. You want to know what fabulously exciting object lay hidden inside all of these despicable peanuts?

Yep. That's it. A red, Fiestaware bowl to replace the one Reese dropped on the tile a couple of months ago. That's it. This is what I get for thinking I'm being smart by not dragging three kids to the mall for a $7 bowl. I'll just order online. It will be much simpler. Ha. Ha ha. It would have been simpler to buy my own pottery wheel and fashion my own dadgum bowl, dry it in a kiln and paint it red than to deal with this peanut mess.

That's what I'll do next time. Seriously. I will.

Friday, January 4, 2008

I Am a Nerd

I really am such a nerd. I'm exhausted today and for once, it's not because of restless babies. It's not because I partied into the wee hours of the morning. Nope. It's because I stayed up too late watching coverage of the Iowa caucuses. Wait. Is it caucuses? Or possibly cauci? I'm new to the political arena - I discovered The O'Reilly Factor on the Fox News Channel about a year ago and I'm obsessed. I love to think about how Hillary felt when Obama crushed her. I apologize if I am offending any of you, but I can't stomach the idea of her as president. Not because she's a woman, or a Democrat (Obama is a Democrat and I love him), but because she seems like the type of person who would sell her own grandchildren to become president. Oh yeah, and she has cankles. I may have them too someday, but I don't now and I don't want to see them on our president.
I like to wonder why Guiliani was the obvious favorite 6 months ago, but ran to Florida yesterday because Mike Huckabee came out of nowhere to beat everybody. I love to watch Fred Thompson dang near fall asleep at the podium every time he talks. I love the guy, but maybe he should stick to acting. He might drop dead of a heart attack the first time he gets a 3 a.m. phone call at the White House.
I don't know why I didn't pay closer attention in Coach Christenson's government class. Maybe it was because I was a dorky cheerleader trying too hard to be cool. Possibly it was because there was someone relatively cute sitting next to me. It could have been because I was busy passing notes, planning the next party. Whatever the reason, I was a fool. This stuff is really interesting.
Ok, it's official. I'm old. And boring. And nerdy. But it's fun to watch something I can never be a part of. I will never, ever run for office of any kind. Not even PTA Treasurer. I don't care that much, plus I have WAY too much of a past to even put my name in the hat. (Thank God there were no video cell phones when I was in college!) My husband can't run because they'll trash him because of his wife's wild past. So, I'll just sit at home and be a boring, nerdy observer.
Hey, when you're at home all day with three kids and your choices for outside entertainment are the computer or daytime TV, you get your kicks where you can.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Looks are Deceiving

Look at these two. Don't they look darling? Don't they just look like two of the sweetest, most angelic little baby girls you've ever seen?

I'm here to warn you. Don't let their innocent smiles fool you. They are not nice children. They are conniving, lying, clever little toots. They are smart. And there are two of them. I never had a chance.

This was never so evident as it was yesterday morning. It started like any other morning. Eating, getting dressed, arguing over sippy cups. Nothing unusual. But then we discussed how Reesie was getting to be a big girl and maybe we should try again to get her to go tee-tee in the potty. So I took her diaper off of her and took her to the training potty in our room. She sat for a good 5 minutes, getting up intermittently and shaking her bottom and laughing. I could tell she wasn't taking it at all seriously, so I just said "Hey Reesie, if you are able to go tee-tee in the potty even just a little bit, we'll all go make cupcakes together." She agreed and said "Yeah, Momma, I do it!" I watched for a bit longer and then said, "Come get me if you need me," and she and Avery stayed in the bathroom.

A few minutes went by and nothing happened. Until, suddenly, both girls came out of the bathroom, shrieking with delight. "I went potty!" Reese declares. "She did it, Momma!" Avery says. "WHAT?" I say. This isn't the first time Reese has said "I did it," when all she did was sit there, looking adorable. So, I went to the bathroom to check out their story. And you know what? The little potty was full. I couldn't believe it. I said "Reese, you went potty?" She grinned and said "YES!" so excitedly, I couldn't resist picking her up and swinging her around, cheering for her and chanting her name. Avery said "Momma, I went on the big potty while she went on the little one!" "Good for you, girls," I exclaim. "I'm so proud of you! Let's go make cupcakes!"

Off we went to the kitchen. We were all so excited and happy. I went on and on about it. The girls never flinched or changed their story once. As I got into the pantry to get out cake mix and frosting, a nagging doubt reared it's ugly head. I had to ask. "Avery, did she really go tee-tee in the potty?" "Yes, Momma. Remember? You came in and saw it," she reminds me solemnly. "I know, I just can't believe it," I respond. And then I start to really question it. All of a sudden, I can't believe it. Because in all the times I've sat Reese on the potty, she has never, ever gone and seems to me to have a stubborn resolve against going on the potty. So I ask them both again. And again, they give me adorable, grinning assurances that indeed, Reese is a big girl and she did finally go tee-tee on the potty. I pull the Jesus card: "I'll bet Jesus is so happy that Reese is such a big girl. You know he can see everything you are doing, right?" "Right, Momma. He is so happy," Avery tells me. I feel sick at the thought that my child would lie right in front of the Good Lord, but I'm still suspicious. So, I grasp at the only thing left I can think of. "Ok, well, as soon as I check the tee-tee to make sure it's Reesie's, we'll make those cupcakes and party all day!"

And then the truth comes out. Avery sheepishly admits, "Ok, Momma. It wasn't really Reese. I did it." "What? You went potty and said it was her?" I ask. "Yes," she says. "Why?" as if I don't know. "Because I wanted cupcakes," she responds. "But why did Reese say it was her if it wasn't?" I ask. "Because I told her to." She isn't even upset about this. She doesn't seem embarrassed or sheepish or even disturbed by the depths of her deception. The only thing she seems slightly upset about is the fact that we are probably not going to have cupcakes. This doesn't stop her from asking if we will still be able to make them. As if she isn't in more trouble than she's been in in a looooong time. As if she didn't just tell about 15 bold-faced lies to her mother. Not to mention the fact that she is dragging her innocent 2-year-old sister into her tangled web of deceit. Nope. She showed no remorse. And it terrified me.

It hit me later today that this is the first of what is sure to be many, many con jobs they pull on me. And they will only get better. Let's face it, today, their matching stories and sweet grins almost worked. If it weren't for Mother's Instinct, I would never have questioned them. Let's just hope that instinct sharpens with age because I have a feeling their stories will be much more elaborate and well-rehearsed in the future. I'll say it again. I don't have a chance.


Happy New Year! I got on yesterday morning to wish everyone a Happy New Year and either my computer or Blogger wasn't being cooperative, so I gave up. I was lazy and slothful and fat all day long and it was glorious. But don't feel like you missed anything. I'm sure the post would have been all about my new resolutions for 2008 and since we all know that those (lose weight, save money, be organized, etc) always fail, it would have a been a wasted post anyway.
However, there is one resolution I'm determined to keep. Much like last year's being more green and volunteering more, this one is one that will add to the happiness and peace in my own life as well as those around me. I hope that, by posting this resolve for all the world (or at least all 22 of my regulars) to see, it will encourage me to keep it in the forefront of my mind, making it less likely to be forgotten. So here goes:
I vow to become more accepting. Accepting of others and their differences, accepting of my own failures and shortcomings, accepting of things I have no control over and therefore cannot change (Serenity Prayer, anyone?) I promise to try really, really hard not to get upset or get my feelings hurt when someone doesn't behave in the way I think they should. I will accept that everyone does things in their own way and just because I wouldn't do things in that way, does not mean they are wrong.
And here's something I find interesting. The letters in the word PEACE are found in the word acceptance. Coincidence? I highly doubt it.
I'm going to do this one. I think my sanity depends on it.

Oh, and I did add lose weight to my list because there hasn't been a New Year's in history that I didn't need to make that one. I bought Advocare's Fiber Cleanse and am cleansing as we speak. It lasts 10 days, so wish me luck. Hopefully, I won't be on the toilet too much to fulfill my daily duties as mother, wife and computer nerd.
Happy New Year!!!