Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Obligatory New Year's Resolution Post

So, today is New Year's Eve which means everyone across the world needs to start making promises to themselves that they already know they are not going to keep. In honor of that outstanding tradition of starting the new year off with failure and disappointment... here is my list.

1. I resolve to no longer make myself feel better at the expense of others. For example, I will not look at the moms at preschool who are dropping their kids off while they are still in their pajama bottoms and shake my head in disgust. Instead, I will simply admit that while they look utterly ridiculous in their tartan plaids (or worse, in their cartoon festooned bagginess), I will appreciate their need for comfort and pray for all of the world's scientists to finally invent a stain remover that can take out the grape juice stain that's been on their t-shirts since September.

2. I will no longer make snap judgements about people. For example, I will not immediately think "psycho, idiot, loser who should be forcibly sterilized" when I hear about a mother of six intentionally having eight more kids. And, I will not decide that people are trashy and gross based on their hair colors, teeth or lack thereof, wife beater tanks or affinity for NASCAR racing.

3. I will no longer watch worthless television. I will give up my addiction to reality tv and all of the idiocy that comes with it. I will save myself the torment of listening to the Kardashians in all of their "OMG, I am so hot" glory (and I will not scream at the tv that OMG isn't actually a word, so quit saying it like it is!!!! ) and I will no longer sit transfixed in front of the boob tube when drunken college students live in a house with seven strangers and declare their love for their boyfriends/girlfriends at home while simultaneously sleeping with every person in the house (usually both genders).

4. I will actually post blog entries more often than once a month. Let's face it... I am really just sitting on the couch watching DVRed reality tv from the night before, so now that I am giving that up, I will have more time to spill my inner most thoughts across the globe... or to the three of you that read it.

5. I will have more tolerance for stupid people. It's not their fault that they are idiots. I blame myself for being able to count to 12 before getting in the express check out lane, or for realizing that if you're in the left turn lane, you ought to turn left instead of sitting there through the entire light hoping to merge into the right lane when in reality no one is going to let you. My bad. Instead of mocking these unfortunate souls, I will work with state and federal governments to pick a state (probably Montana... it's big and pretty empty) and banish all the morons there and throw away the key. Actually, we probably wouldn't have to lock the fences because they won't be smart enough to try the door anyway. Or wait... Gitmo is empty now, right? Apparently you can house people there for years with no concern for civil rights.

6. I will no longer laugh and/or run for a camera and take a picture when my kids are either hurt or doing something potentially dangerous. I will strive to be the kind of parent people don't want to call CPS on.

7. I will quit making promises that I know I am not going to keep. So, no... I will not attend your Pampered Chef party... so don't ask and I won't have to tell you that I'll try to make it when I have no intention of coming. And no, I will not keep any of these resolutions, but at least I had the good intentions of writing them out. That ought to count for something, right?

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

It Takes a Little Push....

I am admitting it here and now... I did it. I was frustrated. I was annoyed. And I did it. I punished my son in the most evil of ways. Forgive me, blogisphere, for I have sinned. First, I ripped him out of a peaceful and serene slumber. Then I shoved him into constrictive clothing from head to toe. Clothing designed to squeeze every last drop of moisture out of your skin by wrapping you in 14 tons of cottony insulation. Then, I put him in subarctic temperatures and pushed him down a steep incline. Actually, I wasn't the pusher. That individual sin is not mine. I was the orderer.... Mark was the executioner. I said push and Mark... he pushed. Yes, friends who now despise me for my evil ways, I admit it. I made my son go sledding.

For whatever reason, Will decided that sledding was a fate worse than death. He was napping when all of his cousins were going and I thought, why make him miss out on this fun activity with the kids? I got him up and shoved him into snow pants, boots, a puffer coat and gloves until he resembled poor Randy Parker who couldn't put his arms down. And, just in case you thought this was a peaceful torture, let me just tell you this. He did not go quietly. He screamed. He cried. He fought those boots like there were hot coals stuffed inside. But, Mommy knows best. I felt certain that once he got out there, he would love it. So, I mummified my little boy and sent him into the darkness for a round of night sledding.

He cried.

Mark sent him down the hill anyway.

He smiled and said "that was fun."

Mark took him to the top and said let's go again.

Will cried and begged for mercy. Luckily, mercy was granted. Back into the warm car and back to Great Grandma's house he went. One trip down the hill and then back home where he was able to shed his layers and finally stop the madness. One trip down the hill for all of our blood, sweat and tears that went into the sledding adventure. One trip. That's it.

Even though it didn't go well, I am not sorry for the torture I've inflicted. I'm sure I will be when I have to pay the future therapy bills that this debacle will undoubtedly require, but for now I am not ashamed. Hear that, Dr. Phil? I am not ashamed. How will little kids ever decide what they like and what they don't if you don't... well.... give them a little push? Earlier that day Will went nuts about going swimming, but the second his little tootsies hit the water, he was off and swimming like a guppy. Well, like a guppy who has to wear an inflatable ring. If I would have given in to that bout of fear, he would have missed out on a super fun afternoon. Sledding could have been the same way. He could have sailed down that hill in his Rubbermaid tub (yes, we are that ghetto) and gone 100 more times. Or, he could go down once and beg for his life and promise to sacrifice his first born child to get out of going again. Either way, I am not ashamed of a little forced experimentation. That's how brave boys are made. Or, if nothing else that's what I will say when CPS shows up to take him away from me.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Freakin' Christmas

Christmas is in a day and a half and let me paint a picture for you... A little foray into my world and how that world operates.

I have purchased what feels like 1,000 Christmas gifts. My bank account has hemorrhaged and is circling the drain, but my kids will have a great Christmas. Will has Rocky the Robot truck waiting from Santa, Jack could care less but will love his Nintendog and Tabbi got the Barbie Nail Printer thingy that she was "OMG! DYING!!! FOR!!!" Merry Christmas to all, and my God can I go to bed now?!?!?! I even bought the stocking stuffers and Xmas jammies and visions of sugar plums are even starting to dance around my head (is that the Christmas spirit or my Christmas martinis talking???). I walk into my house today after getting the boys their Christmas haircuts and life is good. Nap time equals finish my book time because I am a woman that is completely in control and caught up.

Then I walk to my room.
Then I wonder why Chuck My Talking Truck is in the middle of the floor.
Then I wonder why Jack's Carpenter table is in the closet doorway.

Then I walk into the closet and wonder why in the hell the freaking closet shelf had to freaking fall down and scatter every freaking Christmas present between here and freaking kingdom come, meaning that I can't freaking read my book because I have to freaking find a new home for every freaking present I've purchased. Uh huh... bah humbug doesn't even begin to describe it.

Merry FREAKING Christmas, everybody... and Happy FREAKING New Year!

Friday, October 30, 2009

I'm an acter...

I am an acter. I am and no, that is not a typo (unless you count made up words as typos... which they aren't, they are purposeful inventions). I am not an actor. I don't do plays or commercials and I don't get paid millions of dollars to appear on the big screen. I am an ACTER and by that I mean that I act. I take lost dogs home and I take lost children to police officers. I call the police when cars are broken into and I step in when stepping in is needed. I've called police and I've called CPS and I act. I am an acter. I've never given my propensity for action much thought until yesterday when I realized that an entire community of people were not acters. They were watchers, and they watched.

My friend Homa called me and lured me out from under the rock from which I was hiding under to escape the world of news and current events. I haven't watched the news in 100 years, or so it felt (wait...who is the president of the United States? When did someone land on the moon?), and I learned that a 15 year old girl was gang raped in a public place and in front of a crowd of onlookers who did just that... they looked on. I'm sorry, what? Surely I misheard and really the story is that a crowd people were battling each other to be the first to either step in to save the girl or dial 911 to get police on the scene thus saving the girl. Surely I heard wrong and someone thought about saving the girl. But, no. I didn't hear wrong. People watched a girl raped, tortured, sodomized, penetrated with foreign objects, and not just by one person. By a group of boys taking turns in the torture. And a group of people watched. They watched and they twittered about it. And they did nothing.

Everyone I have heard from, be it friends of mine or famous people on The View, have been rightfully appalled by the situation... so how could a massive crowd of people decide that watching such a evil act is ok? I don't get it. Is it our fear of repercussions from getting involved? For example, recently there was a boy in Chicago caught between two rival gangs and he was beaten to death while witnesses did nothing. One bystander was quoted as too afraid to step in for fear of suffering the same beating that was given to (and eventually killed) the young boy. I get that. I can honestly say that as an acter, I would be hard pressed to step into a gang war fearing for myself. But I can damn well say that I would have been dialing 911 so fast that my cell phone numbers would catch fire. And in both situations, the witnesses had phones. In Chicago, the cell phones were used to record this child's death on video and in California, they were used to twitter and text people about the atrocity being witnessed. In neither situation were those phones used to call 911 and alert the police to the crimes without alerting the criminals.

Is it that we are such a self centered society that we no longer care about the fate of our fellow man? Do we get so wrapped up in our own worlds that the screams and pain of another person don't even register anymore? I don't think so, because we rally around breast cancer victims and the families of military men and women killed in battle. We cry for the kids on Extreme Home Makeover for moldy homes and cramped living spaces. Our hearts go out to these people and rightfully so, but when a group of boys are seen torturing a teenage girl... why is that not every bit as heartbreaking and appalling? We are called to action for fundraising walks for everything from Hemophilia to Save the Spotted Owl, but there's no moral obligation to stop the sodomy of a child when you are seeing it IN PERSON? Sure you may not know that girl, but she is someone's daughter. She is someone's sister and someone's classmate and someone's friend. She is someone sharing this planet with you and yet there's no desire to stop her suffering when it takes place right in front of your eyes? And if you are a woman, know a woman, or have a daughter... the next time... you could know the victim of this hateful crime, or, you could BE the victim of this detestable crime... and what if a stranger stood by and let you or your loved one suffer?

Is it that we are we too desensitized to the violence? Is that what causes us to ignore the graphic images of someone being beaten on your very street? Our movies, video games and tv shows show us rape for extra points on certain games and Law and Order: SVU (a show I watch faithfully) gives us images of tortured women on a weekly basis. Does seeing that on tv take away the impact of seeing it in person? Are we that warped that we cannot tell right from wrong anymore because we play the bad guy for fun in video games? We applaud Tony Soprano for his wrong doing because he's charming and has nervous breakdowns, and suddenly our version of hero versus villain has become so distorted that in person, we can't even judge it correctly anymore. Did tv do that to us or is our distortion doing that to tv? Have we become such a violent society that we no longer become entertained by things that don't involve blood bathes and assaults?

I don't know what could cause a group of intelligent people to stand by and do nothing while a person is tortured, defiled and raped, but I think as a country, we need to figure out why this happened. We need to step back and determine what we are doing wrong to make this behavior deemed acceptable. It shouldn't take a bystander law to motivate us to stand up and say that treating people this way is wrong. As a human being, it should be crystal clear what we will tolerate and what we won't. I am ashamed of those people in California and Chicago, and anywhere else where someone watched another person be harmed.... and I am sad to share this world with them. I am an acter... and you should be to.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Lessons Learned at the Pumpkin Patch...

1. Always make sure you've gotten your hand stamped and bought your tickets BEFORE you get in the 400 person line.

2. If you are deciding between sneakers and steel-toed boots before going to the patch, and you have a broken toe courtesy of your husband and his oafish vacuuming moves, go for the steel-toe. Yes, you may be walking awhile, but snagging that sucker on a pumpkin vine just isn't worth it.

3. When boarding your hayride back to the mainland, do not be nice. Nice guys get left in the corn field. And no, it's not heaven... it's not even Iowa.

4. If you feel a little claustrophobic from the large crowds, bring along a guy with a horrible, hacking cough. If you ever wondered what it looked like when Moses parted the Red Sea... cough in a crowd of small children.
5. If you decide to get hot chocolate and you don't want to juggle it while picking pumpkins... don't leave it in the stroller unless you are trying to colonize a bee hive in the cup holder.

6. Long lines + cold wind + nap time = DISASTER.

7. While it's all fun and games to pick a HUGE pumpkin when your husband is there to carry it, it is no longer fun when you are the one hauling it out to the parking lot and into the car.

7a. Calling 911 out in the country takes a really long time for the paramedics to reach you.

7b. New rule... children may only pick pumpkins that they can carry themselves.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Psst... H1N1? Is that you?

Ladies and gentleman of cyberspace... I have an announcement. I have become a complete and utter hypochondriac. Yes, this may come as a bit of a shock to some (but not all since I have declared myself as having chronic mono since 5th grade and had at least one brain tumor headache a month since high school), but it's true. And, what is worse, I have turned my hypochondria onto my children. I am like a Munchausen by proxy mom, without the whole psychotic "making them sick" part. They do that part all on their own.

Seriously, my kids are sick all the time. Insert comment from Lori here (sounds like... your kids are the sickest kids I have even known). They get colds like some famous baseball player that I don't know about since I don't watch baseball catches fly balls. Yeah, that analogy didn't really work, huh? In the past it didn't bother me much. I am not a "rush them to the doctor" kinda gal (after all, I learned from my mom who had me play in a soccer game even though I had pneumonia... not that I am still bitter), but suddenly every sneeze isn't just a sneeze anymore... it's H1N1. I wipe their noses with one hand while speed dialing Dr. G or my dad (whoever can get me a year's supply of Tamiflu fastest) with the other.

Tabbi got sick last week, and when she whined about it, I just told her to buck up. Then, the boys got it. I tell them to buck up too, but they just don't listen. I am sure it's a cold. I am pretty sure it's nothing... and then I watch the news and apparently Channel 6 isn't happy unless we are all sitting in our homes wearing surgical masks quaking in our boots (if you wear boots in the house... which I don't. I am lucky to wear socks, but you get my drift). I have received notification that H1N1 is in Tabbi's school, but again, outside of Trisha Shepard's scare tactics, I still didn't really care. Then, H1N1 hit people I know. Suddenly, I feel like I need to be over protective. Is that stream of snot running down Jack's top lip (I just gagged as I typed that) swine flu, or is it the juicy reminder that fall has arrived? Is Will's hacking cough the hacking cough of just a cold, or is this nefarious and scarily named disease ravaging his body while I sit here and google important things like Lady Gaga's clothes or Gossip Girl rumors (not that I really do that... really, I don't)? Do I lose all credibility with my pediatrician's office by running in with every sniffle I hear or do I sit back and wait for the big one? Why am I channeling Haley Joel Osment only I see H1N1. It's everywhere.

Friday, October 9, 2009

A Tale of Two Shitties...

Once upon a time, there was a boy named Will. He was horribly afraid of going poopy in the potty unless there was a potty seat available. One day, he was at preschool and his teacher took him to the potty three times, but despite his colon's urging, he was never able to go. Time passed slowly for the young boy and his colon, but eventually his mommy picked him up at preschool and Miss M told the mommy of Will's suffering. The mother took Will by the hand to guide him out of the school but was interrupted by her son's begging to use the potty. The mommy took her son into the bathroom and lo and behold, there was still no potty seat. The mommy perched her frightened son atop the potty and after much hysterical crying, the son finally agreed to try to go. Meanwhile, Will's younger brother decided to explore the bathroom. He really enjoyed the urinals and decided that he would like to stand upon them. The mommy ran back and forth trying to keep the younger son from playing in urine and the older son from flailing about and landing his rear end deep in the potty's soiled waters. Eventually young Will was able to poo and Jack was able to stay away from the pee, and the poop experience was over.

Later that week, Will had gotten more brave about going poop in a big potty. He proudly announced to his mother that he no longer required the potty seat and intended to use the big potty alone. In fact, he bade his mother stay out of the restroom completely while he went, so that he could truly enjoy the big boy potty experience. He almost asked for a newspaper to read when he remembered he didn't know how to read. When he was done in the potty, he called for his mother to assist in the wiping. His mother entered and much to her pride, she saw that Will had successfully pooped. However, much to his mother's dismay, Will had one small error. He didn't open the lid of the toilet.

The End.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Breaking Up with Ben & Jerry

Ladies and gentlemen, today I did it. Today, I started a diet. Oh yes, I have whined about weight on this blog before, but today I am actually doing something about it. So, I am pleased to introduce my new blog: Breaking Up with Ben & Jerry at

I am not going to turn my world into a diet fest, as I hate those people and I don't care if Susan Powder reads that or if the entire cast of The Biggest Loser comes after me (although I hope it's when the season starts and not at it's end because at least I may have a fighting chance of outrunning them pre personal trainer and bootcamp). I hate diet obsessed people. That being said, I do want a journal for any potentional success (and immanent failure... wait, who said that???), so Breaking Up with Ben & Jerry is it. If you're bored, stop by. Have a snack (damn, who keeps interupting my thoughts) and enjoy!!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

This and that...

I have a bunch of posts rolling around in my head, but I never seem to have the time or the gumption to write them. After all, real TV is back and I DVR everything. So, if the boys give me some down time, I am usually glued to the boob tube and mesmerized by Real World/Road Rules Challenge or Top Chef or some other kind of brain candy... (wait, don't I have last night's Gossip Girl waiting for me. Crap, better hurry this up).

  • Jon and Kate Plus 8. I never watched the show, and now I am starting to wonder if they never watch themselves on TV either, because they have got to see this nonsense and be humiliated, right? RIGHT??? Kate is controlling... wah wah, Jon. So am I and Mark seems to deal with it just fine. Jon stole their money. Kate withholds his parenting time. Jon is moving to New York. Kate wants the show to go on. I just wonder... we've got what Jon's doing. We've got what Kate's doing. Where'd the 8 go? Is anyone looking out for them in this mess? You know it's a bad sign when people start thinking maybe the Octomom should take Kate's 8, because at this point, even she might do a better job parenting.

  • David Letterman. I still love you, even if you've loved half of your staff.

  • Something is wrong with me. I think I have either had a mini stroke or some late onset of mental deficiency, because I am not right. Yesterday, I got out of the car and was about the shut the door when I thought "oh, I like this song." Then I thought "oh, why is the radio still on." Then I realized oh, maybe I should turn the car off BEFORE I get out and go inside the house. Yeah... Tabbi was there too, so she can testify at my commitment hearing.

  • Sarah Palin. Ok, I just wanted to take a minute to laugh.

  • My good friend Jounice is moving to Wyoming, so if you are one of the other people in that state, say hello to her. You can't miss her... she'll be the African American one. Just be careful if you become her future coworker. If she starts to get frustrated, watch for flying trash cans, because she gets those suckers moving!!!

  • And, a quiz. Is this photo... A.) What I look like before makeup? B.) A star-nosed mole? C.) Lady Gaga's newest video costume?

Friday, October 2, 2009

Plain White Tee

Some women spend their whole lives in search of the perfect little black dress. Some try on 100 pairs of jeans until they find the perfect pair. Not me. I don't wear dresses and as long as I can button jeans and walk on the backs, I am happy. But, I have spent my life looking for the perfect long sleeve white t shirt. It has to wash well, it has to be big enough to not hug my fat rolls, long enough to hide my pooch, and the sleeves have to pass my wrist without covering my hands. This search has been exhaustive. But I found it.

Right around two years ago, I discovered I was pregnant. That pregnancy brought forth the joy of my life. No... not Jack. (Don't get me wrong, he's great and all, but I didn't spend the last 10 years in pursuit of him.) No, it's my white t-shirt... the holy grail of my life. It is from Motherhood Maternity and even though I haven't been pregnant in almost 14 months, I still lovingly don that shirt and embrace its wonder. It has a little bit of stretch so that it doesn't feel like just a plain cotton tee. It has a v neck, but not so low that you HAVE to wear a tank or cami under it. It is long enough and baggy enough (and no... despite it's origins at a maternity store, there were no bows, no ties in the back and no pouches to stick your basketball sized bump in). It fit loosely without looking sloppy and the sleeves were the perfect length. It was is the best shirt I have ever owned. But, now it's gone.

There are two little people in my world who need me for everything. These parasites suck the life out of me on a daily basis. For around 12 hours a day, I am solely responsible for feeding them, cleaning them, diapers, pulling up grunders, playing, interacting, everything. Normally, I don't mind. Sometimes, I even enjoy it. But when Jack gets covered in mud and is crying hysterically.... the whole motherhood thing goes on hold. Do I let him stand there crying, knowing that picking him up would soothe his physical and emotional wounds? Or... do I preserve my favorite, sought after long sleeve white t-shirt. Time stands still as a little, Jackish white cherub angel pops up on one shoulder and a flaming red t shirt wearing Lynn-devil appears on the other. Cherub-Jack whispers "soothe him.... pick him up.... hold your baby until his tears stop... make the pain go away." The devil wears cotton says, "he's not that hurt... he'll stop crying soon... pat his head and save that shirt."

Stupid cherub.

Stupid maternal instinct.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Happy Anniversary!!!!

You know this blog is all me, all the time, when I forget my own anniversary. It doesn't matter if it is my wedding anniversary, hire date anniversary or in this case, my bloggiversary... I still forget the date. My husband should feel better knowing that. (It's not just our marriage that I forget, Mark. It's stuff I like, too).

Yesterday was the one year anniversary of my starting this blog with an innocent little post. Since then I have blogged about everything from politics to my kids to my boobs to my hair to virtually everything in between (and don't panic... I don't mean body parts in between. I just kinda scared myself). I vent, I laugh, I sing, I blog like nobody's reading (luckily for me that isn't too hard to imagine since my audience revolves around my mom and a smattering of friends). So, in honor of my one year anniversary spewing thoughts into this cyber abyss.... I am going to do a top 10 list of my favorite blog posts. If you're new, check them out. If not, and you already read them, leave a comment about a post you particularly liked (if you can't think of one, I totally understand... just humor me and make it up. Chances are, I won't remember if it was a real post or not).

Top 10 Favorite Blog Posts from the Last Year
  1. The Mark Post: It's funny because it's true.
  2. To Lift or Not to Lift: It's sad because it's true.
  3. Momunist Regime Attacks Cookie Party: Because I still fear the momunists!!! (And they're still out to get me. Shhhh... don't tell them where I am).
  4. The R Word: Because sometimes my blog is about stuff that is actually worth thinking about. Not often... but it does happen. Ok, once. Shut up.
  5. Dear Mr. Sexually Harassing Texter Guy: Because he has the nerve to sexually harass me and I never hear from him again. Seriously, is it that hard to pick up the phone and call someone after you send them a sext by mistake??? I feel so used.
  6. Four Years Ago... Sniff Sniff: Because sometimes when I blog, I really mean it. (And not even sarcastically).
  7. Pee Pee in the Potty... A Diary: Because no one should go through this alone.
  8. Will went into the water: Because some posts still make me cry when I re-read them (and not because they are just that bad).
  9. Tween Checklist: Because knowing who I live with kinda makes you understand why I am the way I am. (And it should make you feel sorry for me, too. A double bonus).
  10. A Letter to Kanye - AKA A Verbal Bitchslap: Because sometimes, I crack myself up.

So, those are my favorites. If you liked something else, let me know. I always like to hear from my fans. And no, I can't say that with a straight face.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Lady Gaga - Fashion Wack Job or Just Smarter Than Us???

You may look at this and think, hmmm.... cannibal mask rejected by Hannibal Lecter? But no! Think of the money we would save on makeup and sunglasses if we just went with this look. Not to mention, why go to the dentist if no one sees your mouth? Plus, hello skinny!!! No diets needed when you can't shove food in your face! This is a money saver if ever I've seen one!

This was a fashion risk, because what if she was seated next to The Phantom of the Opera? You never want to be wearing the same thing as the person next to you. BUT - think of it this way... someone sprays you with acid and disfigures your face and no one will ever know. Genius.

Again, a risky choice. This was worn in Europe where frog legs are pretty popular. One wrong move and you are dinner. And, rumor has it, it's not easy being green, but on the flip side, as a frog, she can move easily on land and in water. I am surprised more triathletes don't wear something like this.

If Minnie was going to finally make an honest man of Mickey, this is clearly what she would wear. Thank you, Lady Gaga, for being a symbol of mouse morality. More people should make a stand for rodent marriage.

Clearly auditioning for role of "psychotic alien" in the next Star Wars. Who can blame her for trying on the costume early?

This leotard may be used as a floatation device. Hey, they say California may fall off into the ocean, clearly Gaga is ready.

I feel a little bad for the lady with this one. Clearly, no one reminded her to change out of her nightgown. But, the good thing is that her pad could leak and you'd never know. If only I had this ensemble in middle school! Plus, those zits will never show through that red lace. Really, this is a puberty miracle suit!

I commend Gag (I mean Gaga) for her ability to be dressed without actually putting clothes on. A money and a time saver. Plus, look at those wings. She could take off and flee the scene of any fashion disasters looming ahead. Quick getaways are a must when one forgets to put on their pants.

Sometimes you have to wonder how clean famous people are. They are often on planes and buses for long hours and sweaty from dancing. At least with Gaga, you know if she's taken a shower recently.

Have you ever seen the movie Anaconda? Freaking terrifying. Gaga never has to worry about snake-induced strangulation with this anti-anaconda knitwear.
Lady Gaga says, "Where do I put my drink? There's no table." Her dress says "pick a hip, baby." Who doesn't want to walk around with their own end table attached?

See, I told you. Lady Gaga is not just some kooky celeb. She is as prepared as a boy scout and as creative as a Martha Stewart. Function and fashion.... golf clap for Gaga. Well done, you.

Monday, September 14, 2009

A Letter to Kanye - AKA A Verbal Bitchslap

Dear Kanye,

You are a tool.


PS.... For the record, I am not a fan of Taylor Swift. I can't name a single song of hers. For the record again, I can't name a single song of yours either. Oops. Must add "watch MTV" to my to-do list so that I can figure out who you people are. But, I do know who Beyonce is. I even saw her in concert once with Destiny's Child (yeah...that one college student in the crowd of preteens... that was me). So, it is safe to say I am a fan of hers. And, I am admittedly videoly-challenged, but I have even seen the "Single Ladies" video and I really like it. Catchy stuff. But, Kanye, that don't make you right, OK?

Beyonce's video could be hands down the best video ever vidoed in the history of that channel that used to show music videos but now just shows shows about spoiled brats and knocked up cheerleaders... but that doesn't mean you throw a temper tantrum on national TV. That doesn't mean you storm on stage in the middle of someone's acceptance speech and piss on her. You may disagree with the winner, Kanye, but guess what? It's not up to you. Little hint from me to you, the world doesn't revolve around your opinions. Now, I recognize the world doesn't revolve around my opinions either, but I am not taking a live TV broadcast hostage to promote mine. I am just typing here for whoever chooses to read it. And, I will admit that I am not a terribly nice person. I tend to be a little snipey, snippy, bitchy and may have earned the nickname Luci (short for Lucifer) at one point in my life. But, even if I don't like someone, I don't feel the need to poo on their shoes. You could have gone home and written on your grammatically odd and weirdly spelled website (that I will not put here because I am not going to promote your stupidity to the masses) whatever you wanted about who won what at something OH SO IMPORTANT like the MTV Music Video Awards. Thank goodness you don't waste your time and energy speaking out about something important, like health care, when you can devote your time to little moon man statues and music videos.

And a little FYI for you to tuck away for future temper tantrums... Kanye, no one takes you seriously anyway. Your opinion ranks up there right next to getting culinary advice from Chef Boyardee. Once you threw your first tantrum in 2007 and vowed to NEVER participate in an MTV event again, and then signed on to perform the very next year at the VMAs, you lost any credibility you may have once had. Pathetic media whore, party of one, your table is ready. Please enjoy your happy meal.

This is just not how adults behave, little Kanye. So, let me give you just a wee piece of advice for future performances... stick a pacifier in it, baby boy. No one cares about your opinions, and some of us get enough crying babies at home... we don't need to watch it on TV. But, hey, kudos for the crop circle hair design. I will say, I thought that was very nice.

Friday, September 11, 2009


I remember where I was....

I was driving to work when the first plane hit. It was 7:46am, our time, and I was in my car listening to Good Morning America, like I did every day on the way to work. Charlie Gibson reported that a plane crashed into the World Trade Center. They were speculating on what happened; a reporter heading to the scene. Clearly a plane had problems with the navigation system. Weather or visibility wasn't an issue, so maybe it was pilot suicide and in the middle of the speaking they interrupted themselves. Another plane hit. You could hear the fear and confusion in Charlie's voice as he announced it. Then the pentagon. Then the plane crashed in Pennsylvania. Suddenly, it was chaos. It was a country filled with fear.

Every plane in the sky became a weapon. Reports started coming in that planes were hijacked and headed to targets all over the country. Airports were shut down. Gas stations were mobbed and the only thing on TV was the news. People running and covered in gray ash. People diving out of the tower windows to their deaths. Images of burning buildings, burning people. Death. Children, business people, military personnel, travelers, firefighters and police. Someone I know was supposed to report to work in the towers that morning, but was at the dentist. Another's father was on his way to work when the cloud of ash was so thick he couldn't see out the windows of the car. Another's father died when the towers fell.

I don't know if it was my age or me just being naive, but I had never considered an attack on my country until that day. Wars were fought in other countries and in my lifetime, the only one I recalled was the Gulf War and we won. I didn't know anyone fighting that war, and my experience was in 6th and 7th grade, packing care packages for troops in social studies and wearing yellow ribbons to show our support. There was no blood in that war, not in my limited understanding of it, and no one would spill American blood on American soil. An Independence Day alien attack seemed more legitimate than the idea of humans attacking our country. But, it happened. And people died.

But, despite that death and the despair that is still felt by the families and friends of those who died, our country won that battle. We were hurt. We were broken and burned, but we remain. Our democracy remains. Our pride was stronger than ever. Flags were flown across the country, in front of homes where previous displays of patriotism were limited to 4th of July barbecues. Flags lined streets and people came together to say that while we were hurt, we would not back down. Our country stood for something in the days following 9-11. It stood for the human spirit. The American spirit. The knowledge that no one can break us. The understanding that the pursuit of terror would not make us live in fear. That fateful day showed those of us too young to be part of "The Greatest Generation" what Americans are made of. It was such a surprise.

In the past eight years, flags have come down. Politics went back to usual. Construction has progressed. Conspiracy theorists have had their say, and wars have been waged in lands far away. But, on this day, we as a country, remember. On this day, we as a country, mourn. On this day, as a country... not a democrat or republican, not rich or poor, not black or white, and not young or old... on this day, as a country, we grow stronger.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Too Loud!!!

Will has been diagnosed as autistic about 100 times. Never by a doctor, mind you, but by a million arm chair experts who have seen autism in other kids or on tv and recognize it as the new buzzword diagnosis. That and H1N1, but no one has used that on Will yet.

When Will was younger he would repeat things a million times. It wasn't just apple juice, it was "apple juice, apple juice, apple juice, apple juice" like a broken a record. Why did he do that? Well, according to one nanny (and no... not one that had actually met him....), it was because he was autistic. Will had a terrible fear of bees and insects and so a neighbor suggested he was autistic. He didn't speak more than a few words until he was close to 2 years old, so virtually everyone we know suggested he was autistic. Guess what, folks? HE'S NOT AUTISTIC. No medical professional has ever found reason to test him for autism. No pediatrician has even mentioned it. So, when I pose the question I am about to pose... do NOT come back with "maybe he's autistic" or I may hunt you down and shove the signs of autism up your you know what. (I can't say it because I don't want Will saying "ass, ass, ass, ass, ass, ass, ass" for the rest of the day.)

Today, Will had a rough day of preschool. He went out to the playground with his class, but there was a chipper right next to the playground taking out tree stumps. He was "scarified" by the noise. Luckily, the classroom volunteer brought him inside to play with puzzles. The downside is that he feels totally cheated out of playground time. Obviously, I could just take him to the neighborhood park, but that is not the point. Why is he so scared of loud noises?

Will is truck crazy, so he spent a long time watching the chipper from the classroom window. Much like he watched the cement truck from his bedroom window when we had the patio poured. When they jackhammered the old patio out, Will spent that afternoon in near hysteria and God help me if I play the radio loud and he unexpectedly walks into the house. I guess my questions are... is this normal and how do I fix it? I could use some help, because the last thing I want is for him to flunk out of high school because the janitor is using the floor buffer and Will has to leave his finals because it's too loud.

And let me just repeat what I said earlier... DO NOT TELL ME HE IS AUTISTIC!!! I have print outs ready and I am not afraid to shove them!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Anatomy of a Three Day Weekend

Disclaimer: Names have been changed to protect the guilty...

Day One: Saturday

Boys wake up at 7:30am. Dad leaps out of bed and says "Hey guys, let's go downstairs."

Mom hears happy play noises and comes down shortly thereafter.

Family goes out to lunch (in a restaurant).

Family has enjoyable day filled with group play.

Lliw gets to stay up til 9:30 because it's the weekend, so why not?

Day Two: Sunday

Boys wake up at 7:30am. Dad grumbles a little sigh, but gets up. Mom lays in bed a good hour before coming downstairs. Mom realizes that neither boy has been changed or fed. Mom is slightly irritated, but masks irritation with jokes.

Family goes out shopping. Lliw has fit in store over bike riding (Dad maybe could have let him go one more lap before kicking him off and inducing tantrum). Lliw has fit in second store over lack of sneakers in "giant foot size." Lliw is happy after store three because they had two suitable pairs in his size. Mom is tired of errands. Return home.

Family has dinner at grandparents' house. Grandparents returned from 2 week cruise; happy to see kids and very playful.

Bedtime at 9:30 because family stayed at grandparents' house too late.

Day Three: Monday

Kcaj wakes up at 7:30a. Dad mumbles expletives for five minutes before getting out of bed to take him downstairs. Lliw wakes up and goes downstairs. Mom doesn't get out of bed until pack of wild dogs come in and drag her lifeless body down the stairs. Boys are unfed and unchanged. Mom proceeds to rip Dad limb from limb and beat him with his torn appendages.

It is determined that no food exists in house. Lunch will be picked up from fast food establishment. Mom just wants everyone to go away and is none too helpful in the food debate. Dad (obviously reassembled) offers suggestions that Mom shoots down for no good reason other than she is just grouchy and wants everyone to go away. Ibbat offers suggestion of Chinese food. Dad, now equally grouchy because not only is Mom taking out all of her frustrations on him, but she also made him MOW. THE. LAWN. That bitch. Dad replies to Ibbat, "We are American. We eat American." Suddenly Dad has morphed into idiot redneck with amnesia since we also eat Mexican, Chinese, Italian, etc.

Mom sends Dad and children to park and escapes to grocery store alone. Only time in history Mom decides to take her time at Meijer. Ahhh....the peace and solitude of the frozen foods aisle.

Family goes to grandparents' house for dinner again. Apdnarg hides in den with lights off for most of evening. Amdnarg locks door the second we step out onto front walk. Could hear faint sounds of her calling 24 hour locksmith to come change the locks since we have keys.

Family leaves at normal time. Children put to bed at 6:00p. Ok, not really, but Mom wishes kids went to bed at 6:00p. Kids really in bed by 9:00p. Mom falls asleep chanting "Thank God tomorrow is a school day!"

Thursday, September 3, 2009

I think he likes me....

Ok, so today is Will's second day of preschool. I don't want crying.... I am not looking for tears... but this time I think he is going a little too far.

Day one, he didn't cry. He was a trooper and just waved goodbye and had a hint of fear in his eyes as I walked out of the room. I liked that. Just enough attachment to make me feel secure in my mothering, but not enough to rip the heart out of my chest as I disentangled a screaming mass of boy from my leg. Today... I think I could have used a little more attachment anxiety. We pull into the parking lot and into a space and I start to get out and he says "Mom, you don't have to walk me in. You stay here and I'll run in by myself." Italicized portions denote total "duh mom" whining tone that I thought showed up closer to third grade than three years old.

Really, Will?


He is three years old and already embarrassed by me??!?!?!?! I am not there in a robe and curlers for God sakes. Not walking in with a naked baby on my hip and a Marlboro Red hanging from my lips. What did I do wrong?!?! He didn't even know it was play-doh day yet. I explained that it was a rule that parents take the kid all the way into the classroom so he begrudgingly let me tag along. When we hit the room and he saw the play-doh out, I am pretty sure he forgot my name altogether. I think he muttered bye as I walked out, but that tcould have just been Miss M trying to mimic his voice to make me feel better. I am hoping that a trail mix snack I just bought may remind him that I am almost as good as Miss M when I pick him up.

That's right... I am not above bribery.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Letters on the first day of preschool...

Dear Miss M,

Today I handed over my most precious possession into your care. I only met you once, and it was for roughly 34 seconds, but I am trusting you with my baby. I realize he is three, and he certainly wouldn't allow me to call him a baby, but to me, he will always be my baby boy. Others may see a massively large screaming crazy man, but I see 6.6 pounds of squishy angel that I fell in love with instantly. So, be gentle with him, please.


Dear Will,

Today I left you alone for virtually the first time Daddy, no Grandma and Grandpa, just you. Alone with a room full of strangers. You were sitting at a round table, waving goodbye so bravely, with a hint of nervousness in your eyes. You didn't shed a tear, and I was so proud to walk out of that room knowing that you were so strong.

You've left the nest, so to speak, and I am so happy to see you grow up. I am also so very sad. Sad to know that the life that you are accustomed to is over. From this point on you will realize that someone other than mommy can fix your ouchies. You will learn that life isn't always fair and people aren't always nice. There will be a moment when someone takes your toy and I won't be there to make that child share or comfort you when you cry. You will learn that sometimes your feelings will get hurt, sometimes you will be left out and sometimes you'll have to deal with that alone. I didn't cry when I left you at preschool today, but I tear up at the thought of what your growing means. It means that I can't keep you from hurt anymore, and that pains me more than you'll ever know.

But, I know that you will be so strong. You are such a loving little man, and while I know you will learn that sometimes things go bad, you will also learn that you can accomplish a million things you've never even thought of doing. I left you at a table about to practice writing your name, and I bet you had no idea what one day you would learn to write. And after that, you will learn to read, and count and share and you will grow into such a smart and wonderful little boy and I can't wait to see you again today in just one hour and fifty-five minutes just to see how much you've grown. I am so infinitely proud of you, and I can't wait to meet the little boy that you are about to become.


Sunday, August 30, 2009

A Hair-raising post!!!

I don't really know what that title means, but I am posting some hair pictures, so why not go with it!

Below are pictures of my lovely pink extensions that I got November of 2008 for my 30th birthday. I had them removed about four weeks later. I loved, loved, loved the way they looked (and now that I see the pictures, I totally want them back), but Jack yanked them out and I struggled a bit with styling on those days when I just wanted to let it go curly (aka frizzy) and let it ride. But, on a well styled day, even at 30, my hair was hot!

(I don't know who that chick with my hair is... really.... I look exactly like Heidi Klum so I am not sure why the picture is so fuzzy making me look all old, fat and unattractive).

And.... here are pictures of Tabbi's fab hair makeover from about a month ago. She picked the Victoria Beckham bob and she managed to finally find the absolute best looking hair style to suit her stick straight hair. Love it!!!

Seriously cute stuff! If you liked either of these styles and are within a car ride/flight/train trip/dog sled ride, you ought to see Cari at Rumors Salon. She is magical, I think.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Top 10 Reasons Why Will Shall Be Kicked Out of PreSchool

10. Because he has a habit of saying "Jesus" every time something bad happens.... and I am pretty sure he doesn't mean it in a "Jesus, please forgive me for spilling my grape juice and grant me the power to use my quicker-picker-upper to clean it."

9. Because he thinks learning is playing with trucks while listing off every truck classification he can think of. Picture Bubba from Forest Gump, but in construction. "There's dump trucks, lifter trucks, fork trucks, tanker trucks...."

8. The teacher is going to be sick of holding off the Lilliputians to keep them from tying Will/Gulliver down so he doesn't step on them and squish them.

7. Because he kept asking when he gets to go on stage (aka the altar in the room where the church services are held) and sing. Not sure Pastor C is going to be thrilled with a booming "If You Like To Talk To Tomatoes" drowning out his sermon.

6. Because he can't pass a drinking fountain without "refilling his tank." And the school has three. That's a lot of pit stops.

5. Because Genius (aka Mark) taught Will how to "farmer blow" last night. Yeah. Good call, Mark.

4. Because Will still wants prizes for going potty, even though he's about three months potty trained, and I am pretty sure Miss M isn't going to want to dig around her purse for that Altoid that fell out of the tin back in 2003 just to get him to stop screaming "I GET A PRIZE!!!!"

3. Because when you ask Will to color inside the lines, he takes that to mean within the borders of the desk or table he is coloring upon, but not limited to an outline on the picture on the paper on which he is to color.

2. Because I really didn't realize we were supposed to bring in school supplies at Meet the Teacher night and I still have no idea what those supplies are supposed to be. Oops.

1. Because the idea of having Will gone two mornings a week, during the time which Jack takes a morning nap... It's just too good to be true!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Motivational Mantras

So I was reading Good Housekeeping today and there is an article called "Words to Chill By." The premise is that you can relax by using a motivational phrase that will take you out of your stress zone and into Chill-Land. They say that marathon runners do this during the most difficult sections of the race so that they can concentrate on something other that putting one foot in front of the other AGAIN. Now, I know when I run my marathons, I don't usually need that kind of help because my version of a marathon is the kind on USA on Tuesdays that involve Detectives Benson and Stabler doing all the running, but I digress.

Last week was particularly stressful. We had some ups and downs in Preteen Land and Jack spent the week being... well... unpleasant. Our house payment went up $300 a month and while I wish I could say that we live a life where an additional $300 a month is not an issue, but that is as likely as me strapping on some Nikes and running a real marathon. It hurts. And shin splints don't take away your house, you know what I'm sayin'?!?!?! And, on top of the usual day to day "oh my God, why do I have three kids and a spouse and a house" stress, my aunt (who I adore) is super sick and not getting well. The roller coaster of "I think this is a good sign" only to be dashed by a "I think this is a bad sign" updates on her health are unbearable. So, I read this article with gusto. Save me, Rosemary Ellis, and your magical publishing geniuses!

Here are some of their mantras:
  • When life looks like it's falling apart, it may just be falling into place. I like it, but it doesn't really work for my stresses. Money problems doesn't make my life fall into place. It's not like five people living in a box on the corner makes you say "Gosh... this is where I'm meant to be." And, it sure doesn't work for my aunt's failing health. So, thanks anyway.

  • Don't worry about the mule going blind; just keep the wagon loaded. Despite the fact that I don't own a mule, and my wagon is always loaded with Will and Jack... I still like this one. It basically means, some things are out of your hands, so deal with what you can control. Now, as a control freak, I feel like I can control everything, so again... doesn't work for me.

  • The kids will never remember, but you'll never forget. Wha huh???? That doesn't make me feel better at all. I want to forget. I WANT TO!

So, I basically veto any and all Good Housekeeping mantras, but I like the idea. So here are a few from my world...

  • You're only as happy as you let yourself be. A fortune I received the day before my "life ending" move from Iowa to Kansas at age 14. It was true, and I was really happy in Kansas.

  • It is what it is. Hey control freak, you can't change it so shut up about it.

  • Anything can happen on any given day. That's why we play the game. A quote from my mom, said before every single sporting event of my entire life (which could total around 400 million). But, it works for life, too. Anything can happen on any given day. Be open to the possibilities.

  • Sometimes you just need to look reality in the eye and deny it. Amen, Garrison Keillor. Amen.

I think if I am going to wax relaxing, I would pick one of those last ones, depending on my situations. What's your chillaxing mantra?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Mother of the Year Part Two

This is Will eating pasta when he was roughly a year old.

This is Jack eating pasta and he is roughly a year old.

What in the name of Super Nanny am I doing wrong here?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Mother Of The Year

So I decide to go to the local Chick Fil A today so the boys can play in their play place. It's rainy and muggy here, and Chick Fil A's play place has a toddler area plus a bigger area, so Will and Jack can both have fun. When we arrive, I see a friend and say hello and she asks "you aren't going to the play place are you?" Well, uh... yeah. Why else would I be here. I say yes and she informs me that there is poop down the slide. Being the inquisitive sort, I take a look and there is indeed brown smeary poo traveling south on the twisty slide. I was horrified. I was disgusted. I was willing to eat lunch and then take my kids into the play place after the staff cleaned it up.

Hey, what's a little poop in comparison to the shit storm I'd be in for if I brought them home without visiting the play place that I had promised?!?!?!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Never Happy...

I wanted a patio, and now the dog rolls in the dirt left over from the construction and gets covered in the gray dye dust left over from the decorative border and tracks that crap into my house every single time he goes outside, which is roughly 862 times a day.

I waited all summer for the school year to start, so that I had one less kid in my house all day. Now I am already sick of waking up early to make sure she is ready on time and don't even get me started on homework, which is far more work for the parent than the child.

I was super excited for Jack to start walking, and now I am sick of him getting into everything, everywhere.

I couldn't wait until Jack turned 1 and we could quit buying formula and switch to whole milk. Now, I am sick of having to keep two gallons of milk in my already cramped fridge.

I look forward to going to Lori's house to swim on Wednesdays, but when I go I am utterly exhausted from having to watch the boys so closely.

I love going out with the girls for our weekly get-together, but I hate how tired I am the next day.

I was thrilled to get the laundry done this weekend, but now I have nothing to do today.

I wanted a job for extra money, but now if the boys nap at the same time I have to work instead of watching DVR-ed Law & Order SVU.

If my Diet Coke can is half empty, I don't see it as half full.

I hate our poorly manicured front lawn, but I am not willing to get off my butt and do anything about it.

Basically, I have come to the realization that I am never, ever happy. Sucks, don't it.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I Don't Do Eulogies...

Michael Jackson died, (in case you having been living on Venus with your DSL and Satellite down and therefore didn't know) and it got me thinking. If you interviewed the bulk of the American public the day before he died, they would have blabbed about the pedophile rumors and the Wacko Jacko behavior and oh yeah... he had some good music, too. The day after he died, he was Humanitarian of the Year and the best damn entertainer/human being on God's green Earth. Now, I don't care that much about MJ and I don't give a rat's tookis which one you think, because this is my actual point.... Why do we wait until someone dies to say all the good stuff about them. Why don't we say it when they are alive?

I wrote a post back in May about two men that died in 2005 that meant the world to me, my Grandpa Wilfred Ash and my dear friend Bill Tatum. Now, I would like to think they both knew that I loved them, but did they know how much? All those things I said about them in my post, I would never have said to their face. How stupid is that? How back-ass-ward of us, as a society, to bust out eloquent and loving eulogies when the person you are speaking about can't hear you. Why don't we open up and tell the person while they are alive, instead of telling all their friends and relatives after they are dead?

With that in mind, I am going to tell you about my Aunt Patti (who I would insert a picture of, except I know she'd be pissed because she'd see it and think she has a double chin or something else ridiculous that no one else sees). She is very much alive, and while she is ill right now, I have all the faith in the world that she will recover. Life is all about ebbs and flows, ups and downs, and this down will come back up. Here's how I know. Patti Erpelding is the strongest, bravest person that I have ever known.

There hasn't been a time in my life where she wasn't "sick." I remember being so young and riding bikes to a pharmacy with Patti's daughter Heidi and Heidi said to me "did you know my mom is dying?" I didn't know that, and I am not sure I was even old enough to understand what that meant, but I didn't admit it that day. I said "I know." Later I learned that Patti had an illness that could some day claim her, but you know what? It hasn't. And you know what else... I am really old now. I am not that 10 year old riding a bike. I am 30. So that means that Patti has been stronger than this for long enough for me to go from bike riding to teaching my son to pedal his own bicycle. I don't know many people who could have that kind of fight and stamina.

Patti has seen her children graduate high school, college, marry, have babies and now watches her grandchildren grow up. The really amazing part is through this, through the times in the hospital and the transplant and the sickness and pain, she has remained this fantastic person. She isn't bogged down in the "life is unfairs" and she isn't bittered by the "why me" questions that I think I would drown in. She is funny and vibrant and absolutely the most caring mother/grandparent/sister/aunt that anyone could be lucky enough to have. I remember a day when we were visiting Iowa, where she lives, and she had to leave because her granddaughter Charly was really sick with a flu and Charly called to ask Patti if she could come see her. Patti dropped everything and went. What kid could ask for a better grandparent than that? She goes to every game, event, special occasion even if she's not feeling well, and it's because she cares more about the kids and their feelings than she cares about herself. She puts every single person before herself, because she loves them that much.

I have always felt a special bond to my Aunt Patti. I don't know if it was serving spaghetti on Easter (which rocked for me because I hate ham) or if it's because she is the only person who reads more than I do (and lends me books when she is done like she's my own personal Barnes & Noble). It could be because she shared my favorite color (yellow) and it could be because any time my hair or clothing went toward the...uhh...more unusual, to her it was always "unique." I do know it's because she will buy almost anything with a hood (and so do I) and she'll burst into song when the mood strikes her, and she almost always smiles when she talks, no matter what the subject is. The reality is, I can't articulate the all the reasons why this person is so special, but anyone who reads this and knows her will be nodding along with the simple statement... she just is. The bottom line is that this world would be a better place if there were more smiling, reading, family loving people like Patti in it. And my family is infinitely lucky because she's ours. I know in my heart that I have a really long time to wait before this becomes an issue, but I am not going to make the mistake of not saying it until it's too late. I love you, Patti! And you're amazing.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Happy Birthday, Jack!!!

Jack, Age 1

I always laugh at bloggers' birthday tributes to their children. Like their 8 month old is going to grow up to read this stuff someday? By the time our kids are old and jaded enough to blog and read blogs, there will be some mind telepathy technology where writing will become obsolete and thoughts just magi-ppear (magically appear... in Lynnspeak) in people's heads. But, today I feel motivated to write one myself. Maybe I am PMSing (which I am sure Jack will be thrilled to read if he ever reads this).

Jack's Birthday Cake

My baby boy turns one today. How weird is that? I feel like I was just pregnant with him. Truly, this year has flown by. I feel much more sentimental about this birthday than when Will turned one. Maybe it's because I know that Jack is my last. Maybe I know that this is the last first birthday in my future. Maybe it's because I now know how quickly this life flies by. Will starts preschool on "tember first" and suddenly I feel like he's going to college soon. Tabbi asks about puberty all the time, which makes me feel like she'll be married with her own kids soon (and no, not literally. This isn't... uh... can't think of a state where I won't offend people so I'll just leave that joke alone). And maybe it's because Jack and I had a pretty rocky start, but I now realize that my life would not be the same without him.

Jack's Smash Cake

When I got pregnant, I was actively trying not to. That birth control pill just can't be trusted. Moreover, I never got excited about it. I didn't glow with the thoughts of baby like I did with Will. It wasn't according to my plan, and I felt like I couldn't handle it. Will was SOOOO time consuming that how could I ever deal with a second one? Even when he was born, I didn't feel bonded to him like I did instantly with Will. I wanted to. I wanted my eyes to be glued to him at all times, like they were with Will, but they weren't. Maybe it was the circumstances or the fact that I didn't have time to bask in his glory because two other kids (much needier despite their ages) took up so much time. And, Jack cried. ALL. THE. TIME. There was no cuddly cute baby goodness. It was loud, screaming, spawn of Satan badness.

Jack's Food Coma

But, now. Jackers. Jack Attack. Jack Jack. He is mine and I love him. EQUALLY. I don't know when it happened or how, but at some point I realized that that crying, screaming, psycho child was wonderful. And I loved him. Maybe it was the medical scares, or maybe it's the way his eyes crinkle when he smiles. Maybe its the sweet way he lays his head on your shoulder or the belly laugh that comes when you least expect it. Maybe it's the crease on one cheek when he smiles his super big smile or maybe it's the two bottom teeth gleaming white against his pink lips and gums. Maybe its this babbling that is non-stop chatter with these intonations that crack me up or maybe it's the way he slaps his stomach as a clear attempt to communicate even though we have no idea what he is trying to say. Maybe it's the way he explodes with happiness when my mom or Mark walks in, or the way he waddles to me when he wants a cuddle. Maybe its that silly one finger point at everything or nothing, or the way he'll just randomly lay on the ground for a couple seconds before he gets up and plays again. I don't know what it is, but that kid gets hold of you and there is no going back. So, with all those things in mind, I want to wish Jack the happiest, eye crinkling, smile inducing birthday any one year old has ever had. Happy Birthday, Little Man. Happy Birthday.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Interesting Question...

My Facebook friend Angela posed an interesting question as her status today. Which of the five senses would you voluntarily do without? It was interesting to read people's answers on her page, because someone answered every single sense and had decent reasoning behind it. I answered easily on Facebook and had a great theory behind it... but I don't want to sway anything here. I'll post my answer later today, but for now... what sense would you ditch, if you had to ditch one?
For those of you who flunked... uh... whatever grade you learned this... here's your options. And no, ESP is not one of them.





Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Missing Missy

Today is a sad day in my household, surprisingly enough. MissyBellaYuki, the dog so nice we named her thrice, is leaving. It's not the dog hair, the mud tracking, the uber-drool that comes with everything she eats... no. She bit my baby.

Yesterday Jack Attack was crawling through the playroom and Missy was blocking the way. She is a 95 pound speed bump, and no matter who is coming through, that dog does not move. It's part of her charm. But, Jack barely touched her, if he even did, to get past yesterday and she lunged at him. I watched as her formerly statue-like head swung around and she barked/growled/bit my little man's head. Truly, she got him forehead to eyebrow to temple. Luckily, the skin wasn't broken, but I thank one teeny tiny layer of dermis for that because the temple gouge was as close to bleeding as any non-bleeding thing I have ever seen. Today it is just bruises where her teeth were, and I am grateful for that. But, Missy is out of here.

We sought a new dog because Bentley is so anti-child. That being said, he would never bite them. He just runs his fat beagle behind away, and that works for me. Missy, who could be mistaken for a polar bear rug, doesn't move... so I can't risk having a snapper who will not get out of the way mixed with a toddler who cannot control where he is falling half the time.

So, goodbye Big Dog. I will miss your sweet eyes as you would come lay your head on my lap for scratches. I will miss your formerly fantastic way with the kids, letting Jack sit on you and pet you in his not so gentle way. (In the interest of honesty, I will not miss the hair, the mud, the 4 pound poops, the drool encrusted dog bowl, and the panic filled nights of terror because there is a breeze). But, I will miss your fresh from the groomer beauty and that long and super soft hair. I will miss your size and your gentle giant look (before you ate Jack's head). If you read blogs, I want you to know that I wish you the best with your new family and no, you aren't heading to that "farm" in the sky. You're going back to the Great Pyrenees Rescue here in Indy, where they will find you a better home. One with a person who loves to vacuum so they'll love your shedding, and one where the people don't move much, so they'll embrace your speed bump qualities. And more, one that loves you for all your little quirks. Bye, Big Girl.

Monday, July 27, 2009

BlogHer '09

So, as many of you already know... BlogHer was this weekend in the lovely city of Chicago. There was swag, there was food and drink, there was the blogging elite (or bleet, as I am now calling them). But, you know what there wasn't. ME! That's right... let me tell you a little about my BlogHer weekend.

First, let's just put this out there... I never intended to go. I don't got no money for blogging conventions and I do got me some little kids that require my presence at the old homestead. So, my weekend comprised of watching Homa and her boyfriend get into a mega-fight over something even more stupid (or stupider as I typed first) than all the dumber than dumb fights Mark and I have gotten in to. (Seriously, and we once had a knock down, drag out over whether or not you choke or drown on water when it goes down the wrong pipe. Uh huh...almost cancelled the wedding over that one). Then Saturday we didn't do much until I went to my mom's to make an octopus (yeah, another day in the life of me) and after that I was home making a gag-tacular meatball casserole (and I hate me some casserole). Sunday, we managed to mooch lunch and dinner off my parents, so a banner day in my book, but not necessarily swaggy/drunken/blogger fabulous.
Now I am reading tons of my other blogs and getting their take on BlogHer, and I'll admit it. I am jealous. One person I read got to meet tons of other people I read, and I was sitting at home pouring Cream of Onion soup on frozen meatballs. I wish I met those people. I wish I got their swag. Most of all, I wish I was successful enough to warrant my appearance at said convention. The reality is that I don't just want to go to BlogHer... I want someone to want to meet me at BlogHer (insert requisite "oh we would have loved to have met you" pity comment here). I am no Moosh In Indy (although seriously considering changing name to Mooch In Indy and riding her coattails for awhile) and while I am pretty bossy, the reality is I am not BOSSY. So, if I did go to BlogHer, I would have wandered around alone saying (to myself, but not speaking aloud as to remain cool and mysterious but not schizo) "look, its Redneck Mommy" and walking away alone and ashamed that if I talked to Redneck Mommy she'd say "Domestic Who????" So, trips to ALDI and web cam chats with my brother is where I was instead.... but at least that ALDI checker knows my name. (And, my brother does, too). I guess it's time to resign myself to the fact that casserole is how I roll.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

A little story about a boy and his donuts...

Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Will. He asked for Dunkin Donuts for breakfast and what Will wants, Will gets. So, we return to our house, donut box in hand and Will decides he wants to carry the box. Sad part is, I already know that this is a bad idea. I am on the phone with my friend Nicole and as I hand Will the box and say to Nicole "Will is carrying the donut box, wanna make bets on whether or not they make it into the house?" Lo and behold... they don't. Box goes down on the nasty, filthy, dirty, grass and rock encrusted floor mat right before you go through the door into the house. Donuts are toast. (Although when I said that Will pointed out that the donuts can't be toast because they are not made of bread).

I had my hands full of cell phone and a sleeping Jack, so I headed upstairs to put Jack in his crib and was returning to get the donuts. I come back and realize Will is back in the garage picking up donuts. With the garage door wide open. With the door from the house to the garage wide open. With a fat beagle scarfing donuts as fast as his floppy jowls will let him. With the big white dog gone. Clearly, upon encountering this situation MissyBellaYuki's little dog mind channeled Braveheart and she yelled "FREEDOM!" Bentley channeled... uh... me and yelled "DONUTS!"

Jack was upstairs sleeping, so I pulled Will into the yard yelling for the dog with three names. We'd run a couple houses away, then run home and listen for Jack. Then we'd run a couple more houses, then come home and listen for Jack. Luckily, after about 150 laps like this (in 20 minutes) we heard MissyBellaYuki barking. We followed the sounds and found the dog.

Lessons learned:
  • Close the garage door (even if you know you have to turn around and make a second trip to the car right after you put Jack down).
  • If the giant dog takes off... let her go because she is going to shed 4,000 pounds worth of hair and pant out 14 gallons of drool the second her giant self gets back in the house.
  • And lastly, put Bentley on some sort of "Biggest Loser" dog edition, because his pudgy butt needs it.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Seriously, I couldn't make this stuff up...

Will (3) wakes up screaming at 3:00am last night and yells for "Moooooooommmmmyyy, mommy, mommy, mommy, mommy, mooooooooommmmmmmmmmmyyyyy." I walk in and say "hey, buddy, why are you crying?" He gets out of bed and says "I'm not crying, Mommy. I just had a moment."

Sophie (4 now) was in her harness car seat and tells her dad that she has to go potty. Perfect Jeff tells her to "hold it." She says, "I can't dad.... the seat belt is in the way."

Jacob (8 or maybe 9 but looks 12) is going to Disney World in October and is looking at the Epcot stuff. He proceeds to tell his mom that he does not want to go to Japan because he is still upset that they bombed us on that nice Sunday morning.

I take Will into the bathroom to go potty, help him get his pants down and he sits on the seat and says "Mommy, I need some privacy." Nice... I haven't peed alone in over three years... but you have some privacy little man, right up til you need me to wipe your butt!

I am laying in bed with Will one night doing our bedtime routine and I tell him that its time for me to leave, so no screaming or getting out of bed because he would wake up Jack. And Will says "and then he'd cry like a little girl?"

I was watching a youtube video of a horrifically, insanely ignorant religious group who changed the words to "We Are the World" to "God Hates the World" and sang about how much God hated gay people. Will walks over and says "I love those people, Mama. Do you love them?" I say no and explain that they just make me really sad because they hate people for no reason at all. Will says, "I am going to love them anyway because maybe that will make them better." Maybe, Buddy. Maybe.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Tween Checklist

Tabbi is 10... and she's good at it. She has grasped all the subtle nuances of the pre-teen age. Its like she woke up and realized that she must complete the following on a daily basis:

1. Must freak out because new hair cut didn't lay right. (Be sure to ignore any and all suggestions from parental unit as they clearly have no idea what it is like to have a bad hair day).

2. Must freak out because self-chosen outfit doesn't match and therefore you own NOTHING in your 50,000 item wardrobe worth wearing.

3. Must freak out because two previous freak outs have made you run late and therefore you are forced to take a quick breakfast of a yogurt and cheese stick in the car. (Be sure and make it clear that while you typically enjoy yogurt and cheese sticks, today you hate them more than if parental unit were to suggest eating dog poo and dirt).

4. Must reach quota of 5,000 separate complaints per day, ranging from weather and natural phenomena that no one can possibly do anything about to specific complaints regarding being signed up for volleyball camp even though you previously begged to sign up for volleyball camp.

5. All other conversational periods not filled with either complaints or freak outs must be filled with sullen sulking and/or looks of extreme boredom.

6. Any and all suggestions of cures for boredom or blues must be met with eye roll and shoulder shrugs. No suggestions can be entertained if coming from parental unit.

7. Should you decide to request anything (i.e. food, activity, etc) when the parental unit says it's ok, you must dismiss said activity or food with a shrug, ensuring that said parental unit knows they are not doing you any favors.

8. At least once a day, a request must be completely outlandish and insane (ex. getting a tattoo or shaving the dog), but when parental unit declines the request, World War III-inducing freak out must follow.

9. Reduce all conversation and comments (excluding, of course, freak outs) to the volume of a mumbled whisper so parental unit has to ask "what" thirteen times before understanding what you say. And, reserve the right to get super irritated when parents do not hear you, but lower voice exponentially as your irritation rises so that they definitely can't hear you while you freak out because they aren't listening.

10. Insert drugs and sex into mix to become full fledged teenager.

Friday, July 17, 2009


Remember that game from elementary school called MASH? It stood for Mansion, Apartment, Shack and House. You listed off things like three guys, three jobs, three cities, and three numbers and count. When your gamer says stop, the number that you've gotten to is the way you eliminate your options until you are left with a fortune that tells your future. I am pretty sure I was going to marry Chuck Mowder (my 4th grade boyfriend), live in a house in Chicago, work as a vet and have 2 kids. Is it just me, or would you kill for such a easy way to tell you what to do with your life? Hmmm... who do I marry? I know... MASH will tell me and then its a done deal.

This comes up because I went out with my girls last night. Homa, Sandra (yes, the one that was my friend, then wasn't my friend is back in the group...yay), Laura, Lori and Homa's sister Zain hit the local neighborhood joint and got into a discussion about Homa's love life. Without getting into details, the gist is that she is with a dude that her family may not approve of. He's not Mr. Perfect (who is???) and they are at the point where its... uh... poop or get off the pot. But, how do you know it's time to poop or time to get off the pot?

We all had our theories. Laura wanted Homa to know that marriage sucks. Sucks, sucks, sucks. She's been married for 20 years (happily-ish) and its hard. Hard. Hard. Hard. So you have to have a serious foundation of extreme love in order to make it work. So, her theory was that Homa better be pretty darn sure that love foundation is there because otherwise, when her marriage crumbles around her, they won't be able to pick up the peices. Have I ever told you that Laura is our nicest and typically more upbeat friend? Hmmm. Lori is big on Homa understanding that you can't change your man (not that Lori would ever need to. If anything we sit there and say... poor Jeff. Poor, poor, poor Jeff). Homa's dude is who he is, and you have to accept him as he is today. If he improves himself in the future, great... but if he stays exactly the same as he is today... you have to be ready to spend the rest of your life with that version of your guy. Sandra said to ignore the pressure. She, too, has felt marital pressure before and it is easy to get sucked into doing things that you know in your heart of hearts isn't right... but you feel like you've passed the point of no return. Zain just said no. But, I sit and wonder... how do we know? Plenty of relationships (mine included) look completely nutty to the outside world, but that doesn't mean the two involved don't get it? But then again, how can you see everything you need to see when you are the ones directly involved?

Homa asked me once how I knew Mark was the one. I cannot articulate an answer. I didn't doodle his name in my notebook and I sure didn't get my future from a paper game. But, I just knew (although I question it on a regular basis). How do you pick between a family that you've had forever and a man that you love, but is so new in comparison? Do you take that leap of faith? And if you do, how do you know that Mr. Right wasn't shopping at the sushi counter of your neighborhood grocery store, but you weren't there because you were wedding dress shopping because Mr. Right Now proposed and the possibility of being alone forever outweighed whether or not this guy is right for you? How do you know that just because he is your polar opposite in every way doesn't mean that his opposite traits were meant to strengthen you in the same way your qualities were meant to strengthen him? I guess the question is... how do you know?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Clean and Cute... A Distant Memory

Before I had kids, I was at lunch with a bunch of girls from work, and at the next table were two moms that I just could not understand. They came in dressed in sweatpants and stained t-shirts. They covered the highchairs in plastic stick-on place mats (at least they cared a little about cleanliness although I would be more concerned with the bio hazards on their clothes than the germs on the chairs), and ordered themselves margaritas the size of Texas. Then they proceeded to frown and volley their haggard child-induced depression across the table to one another while shoveling chips and salsa into their mouths at lightening speed. My group and I watched the women and laughed (behind their backs of course. We are nothing if not polite in our rudeness and judgements). Two of us freshly married and expecting kids sometime the future, and we knew that we would never be "that kind of mom." But, I realized today that I am just one jumbo margarita away from those two women. (Damn... why doesn't that place deliver?)

Let me take you on a tour of the ghettosville that is my current world. First, let's just say that I am not looking pretty. Ok, so I am still in my jamas, so that doesn't count, but yesterday I wore jeans and a t-shirt and spent the whole day pining for sweats. I don't actually wear the sweats yet, but I sit back and wish that I could. Really... I thought about it a lot. How comfy I would be. How durable I would be. Those tiny little thoughts creeped into my mind. They called to me. "Lynn.... wear me. Put me on. You're a stay home mom.... I am your uniform." I didn't do it, but you know I will give in some day. Maybe today. And, for the record... I am not the only one on the decline. Mark yesterday welcomed James into our house in a completely shredded Hawaiian shirt. I watched him hold Jack while talking to Dr. James and his nipple was showing. I divert my eyes and see his hairy shoulder and lily-white belly playing peek-a-boo too. At least my shirt is intact... albeit wrinkled and spattered with Diet Coke and Jack's breakfast.

Now, let me tell you about my house. First...background info. I bought a house before I had kids. I bought a house before I had a Mark. It was mine. It was cute. I had cute furniture, and decor. Pictures on walls, paint colors that were great, knickknacks... and not kitty statuettes, but real adult stuff that looked great. My house was complimented every time someone came over. It was contemporary, stylish, fun. Now if someone can even utter a compliment with a straight face, rest assured... its fake.

Picture my current epitome of style... in my family room, we have wood floors, but the trim keeps coming lose. So, we have one straightaway with hardened glue as the trim. Oh yes, and its been like that for months. Enter my kitchen where a light bulb has been out for months, and my dog peed on my front entryway rug this morning. Two pictures from the hall are broken, so they now live in the garage (and have for years) and don't get me started on the teeny tiny ants that are devouring my kitchen counters as we speak. My walls are scratched, chipped, nicked, banged, gouged and generally ripped up and I just walk past it, ignoring the water marks on the ceiling and the nail pops that probably spell out "money pit" in Braille above my head. And my bedroom... my sanctuary... my headboard is hanging crooked, the wallpaper doesn't match anything (because it was God awful when we bought the house and what I determined would be number one on my priority list has never been changed) and our treadmill hasn't worked since the day it was carried up those freaking stairs (which have a two story ceiling with more cobwebs than a deserted ghost town. And while you run screaming from my mad house, be careful not to get tangled in our screen door which is only hanging on by a thread and functions way better as a dog flap than an actual door. Jealous, yes?