Wednesday, December 30, 2009

I am officially my own worst enemy.

I got my 9 year old (10 on the 19th as if that matters) a phone for Christmas.

I knew that I would get lots of head shakes from half of our family/friends, and the other half (actually, maybe 2/3's) would not even bat an eye. That is either the perk or the curse of having V work for a cell carrier - while there is cost - it is palatable thus more of our friends' kids have cell phones in their pudgy, sticky, ten year old hands.

I did get it for a very selfish reason - i wanted to be able to call him directly without having to ring his dad's phone every time i wanted to hear his and his brother's voice. And i thought, this child never really asks for anything (unlike his brother), and this one thing he has asked for all year. We even gave him a dummy model back in the summer that i had used in retail when i worked for Sprint and told him that if he could produce the phone every time i asked and it wasn't destroyed or lost - we might consider getting him one for Christmas.

It was the one thing that wasn't lost or detroyed this year. huh.

Fast forward to today. So far:

  1. He has called me from his bedroom to talk to my while I'm in the kitchen.
  2. Called his dad NUMEROUS times while watching bowl games so that they can 'watch together'.
  3. Taken some very unflattering pictures of all of us for his contacts so that these pictures can be enjoyed by all every time one of us decides to call him.
  4. Texted me from the couch while i'm in the
  5. Calls and checks his minutes balance so much Sprint is going to call him back and ask him to stop.
  6. and the final straw - he googled my name and found ALL OF MY POSTS AND HAS BEEN READING THEM OUT LOUD TO THOSE THAT SHOULDN'T HEAR ALL OF WHAT I'VE BEEN BLOGGING. Why he never did that on the laptop i don't know and it's a mute point now.
So. How to deal. how to deal. Delete old posts or say "Screw it. Those are my words and were honestly portraying how I felt at the time."

Friday, December 18, 2009

Meet me under the mistletoe...I have some children I'd like to give you.

"Get your shoes on, i have some errands to run."

"AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH MOOOOOOOOM I don't want to run errands."

"Get in the car."

"I HATE ERRANDS. I HATE SHOPPING. Why can't i stay here???"

"Get in the car."



"I'm gonna tell Dad - you said the F word!".


"Quit ramming the cart into your brother."

"Stop touching your brother."



"Don't pick up that box. It's glass."



"I want THIS for Christmas."

"Can i get it NOW?"




me too.




Tuesday, December 8, 2009

You know how holding someone's hair when they puke makes you REALLY tight with them?

i can top it.

It's been a confusing, strange path of late - between me, the ex and the girlfriend/fiance of his. Some of which i've blogged about. A lot of which i haven't. A lot - and i mean a LOT girlfriends - of time on my knees, forgetting what time it was, praying in earnest to show me what to do and how to do it, and the strength to do it with.

It's ok.

I got to"peace".

We've talked. A lot. I found out that I really like her. Like, as in, we would probably be friends if we met up and there was no ex involved. We have glasses of wine, stories about family, jobs, and kids. And it isn't forced. And that's good.

But tonight - tonight it went past that.

My youngest, my Nate, my baby, is sick. Stayed home from school today with stuffy nose, headache, and sore throat.

This was his dad's day - so i went by to see him and see if he needed anything. She walked me up to his room where he was on his bed and as i sat down with the walgreen's bag in my lap on one side of him, she sat on the other.

And that is about when he turned around and projectile threw up. We're not talking baby or toddler puke. We're talking kid, chunk puke (nice visual, huh?).

As i grabbed the bag i had to hold under him - she held his forehead. She never flinched. No gag reflex action. Believe me. I watched. closely. when you haven't had kids - it's hard to stifle that. once you've had one - you hardly notice.

And when he finally settled down, he looked at me and leaned back against her.

and i thought, THAT'S the kind of person that i want backing me up when i'm not around. And as sad as it is - i can't be there every minute - but when i'm not - she will be. And that's ok.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Charity begins at home i always say. Evidently so does my son.

Putting away clothes in Nate's room last week, i find a wad of cash, ones to be precise, stuffed into a sock in his top drawer.

If he weren't only 8 years old, i would say it's his bank roll for some lap dances at the Fox Trap.

When he walked in on me standing there eyeing that cash, he stopped dead in his tracks.

"where did this come from?"

"uhm, allowance?"

me - staring him down.

"ok FINE. It's offering for church."

"what do you mean it's offering for church?? You were supposed to put that in the offering plate in sunday school!"

"they didn't take up offering."

"why didn't you tell me?"

"you didn't ASK"

Very well. You better ASK for Santa to leave you gifts this year. I'm just sayin.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I'm sorry, but it's time. I know you don't think so, but it is.

My children, not to mention V, are now convinced that mommy has indeed lost her mind. I started putting up Christmas decorations last night. I only got as far as the dining room before a glass of wine called me name. Thus the wreath lounging on the bench, and the nutcracker guarding the garland on the dining room floor.

See how brightly that sun is shining on my wreath? It's because it was about 90 degrees yesterday. More Margaritaville than White Christmas. And it's PRE Thanksgiving. MAJOR CRIME. Nate said it was rule that you couldn't decorate for one holiday BEFORE another. Obviously, he hasn't read Nester's rules about decorating. I think she and I would be BFFs IRL.
(see stepdaughter to be - i CAN text, so there.)

Are you living by the calendar right now like I am? Does it mock you like mine does? Do you hear a soft "tick tick tick" resembling a timebomb in your head? I thought once i had kids that damn clock would shut the EFF up. (See, i'm even curtailing my potty mouth. swear.) My calendar is not my friend right now.
  1. Round 2 of football season and practice - tick.
  2. Getting boys to beach house for Thxgiving holiday w/dad on Saturday - tick.
  3. Getting self pack and overnight to Tampa by Saturday night for step's band competition. tick.
  4. Get BACK to Winter Park by NOON the next day for our women's group to decorate the church for the holidays. tick.
  5. Thanksgiving week in Tallahassee. TICK TICK.
  6. Put the tree up, the lights on, and get the menu done. TICK TICK.
  7. Back from Tallahassee, fly to NYC for 4 days TICK TICK TICK.
  8. SHOPPING. WHEN IN IS THIS GOING TO GET DONE???? tick tick tick tick tick

I know y'all feel me. If you don't - just lie to me. Don't be those friends i hate that say "Oh... my shopping is done, i want to ENJOY the holidays." HOW CAN YOU ENJOY THE HOLIDAYS WITHOUT A PANIC ATTACK??? Pishposh, bring on the paxil - and i will wish you a Merry Christmas in no time flat.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Hell wasn't nearly as hot as I'd thought it be.

It got down to 50 degrees in fact. Which was probably a really good thing considering we didn't shower the entire time we were there. It could have been really ripe around all those un-showered little boys.

And - honestly - i have been trying to think of something clever and smarmy to post about this entire adventure. and i can't. I enjoyed myself so much. It was the first time i have EVER had my youngest son all to myself for an entire 3 days. No ex, no future, no grandparents, no big brother. Just him and me. And i'm warning you all right now, that i don't think i can get through this post without a tear or two escaping.

Oh - and the mom's DID come - on Saturday around noon. I guess the dads all go out friday night, and the wives come out for the saturday events and pack campfire ceremony.

We built boats and raced tham in rain gutters (very cool idea and thankfully lots of the male chromosome around to put those rain gutters on their stands and get them to stay put.)...

I did learn some things:
  1. All of that stuff i packed that Vance told me was overkill GOT USED. so there mr. man.
  2. Don't forget the tarp for under your tent - or you'll have to clean the bottom where it was sitting on the ground in the dirt, before you can pack it up and put in your nice clean car. or you can do like i did, and shove it in your car anyway.
  3. When your husband laughs at you for packing a broom and dustpan, do it anyway, because like #2 - that's another thing you'll have to clean out when you get home - the inside.
  4. The boys will want to build a fort in the woods, as far off the path that you will let them go, with sticks, and pine needles and palm frawns. Let them. Go with them. Get dirty. Crawl inside. Be THAT mom.
  5. Keep your tent zipped up the ENTIRE TIME. or you will get visitors like this:
  6. No matter how many times the following words come out of your mouth, it will be echoed by another parent in less than 5 minutes. For example: "Don't run with that stick, skewer, flashlight, tent pole, WHAT IS THAT, in your hand - you're going to poke an eye out, break your front teeth out, break an arm, a leg, trip over the picnic table, the campfire, the tent stake..." get the idea?
  7. Spend the $25 and get the air bed. AND THE PUMP. i slept like a baby - and everyone had them.
  8. Spend the extra $10 and get the sleeping bags that go down to 20 degrees. once again, worth it. Florida girl here...hellooooooooo.
  9. Don't stress what you don't know. and i didn't know a lot. You'll learn and other parents all help. It is one big family out in wilderness. i mean camp that was 10 minutes from the interstate.
We invited guests into our site...look really closely....can you see them? They're gray and blend into the picnic table...sand hill cranes.

We had a great big pack meeting around the campfire (that's my kid with the blond hair, the arm sling and the walking stick - all props for the den's skit.)

and we closed the evening with a 'bobcat' ceremony - where the parents paint the war stripes on the cub scouts - every color representing something different - and please don't ask me because i can't remember what each color meant. it went by in a blur. and at the end, they got to paint a stripe down our nose - cute huh?

My beautiful baby boy. You asked me what MY favorite part of the whole weekend was today. My favorite part of the entire weekend is when we went to sleep Friday night and you put your arms around my neck and threw a leg over me and said "Mom, i love you sooo much." There is NOTHING in the world that meant more to me than that moment.

I can't wait until the next trip.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I lied. I'm blogging FOR A GIVEAWAY!!!!!!!!!

Ok - i WASN'T going to blog until Monday - but holy beach batman - THERE'S AN AWESOME GIVEAWAY from Completely Coastal - she is pushing the opening of a gorgeous new online store, called Outer Banks Trading Group AND if you're anything like me and drool over Coastal Living magazines and dream of spending your days on sugar white sand - then trust me on this - head over to Completely Coastal now. If you can't go to the beach, you can very tastefully bring the beach to you.

There are so many gorgeous things it was hard to decide what i would spend my giveaway dollars on.

Would it be this.....YUMMY plates for my dining room...


or look at these....SO MUCH eye candy....i probably wouldn't even use them as coasters...i'd find away to display those suckers...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

This is a blog to say I'm not blogging

until i make it back from hell the cub scout camping trip this coming weekend. and did i mention that BEFORE i get to go on the camping trip - i get to go across the state and back before then? Yea, so i'm so not friends with my calendar right now.

I was all like "Camping's great! I LOVE sleeping outside under the stars!" and then when i brought home the calendar, V looked it over, handed it back, and said "have fun baby, but i have something on EVERY weekend there's a camping trip."

You know how in True Blood, Bill Compton can zoom across a room in under a second? Yea, that was me, immediately in his face. WHADDAYAMEANYOU'RENOTGOIN?????

He did start talking but all I heard was "wahwahwahwahwaMIAMIDOLPHINSGAMESUITETICKETSwahwahwahawha"

I'm sorry....did you say something about MIAMI DOLPHINS SUITE TICKETS?

I get to eat charred meat on a stick, sleep on the ground, and serve my youngest up to the mosquitoes as an early thanksgiving feast - AND YOU'RE GOING TO THE DOLPHINS GAME??? IN THE SUITE?????????

Very well. Go. Have fun. Don't worry about me. I'm sure we'll be fine. just because we're coming off a tropical storm, and it could rain, and my tent's not waterproofed, and i've never started a fire before and i didn't know there was such a thing as waterproof matches, and the stove takes some kind of fuel that isn't sold at walmart, and it could be REALLY cold, and IT'S IN THE WOODS.....we'll be fine. Go. have a great time. really.

So, it's ME and a group of 5 dads and our respective children. I took a poll at the den meeting tonight. NO MOMS ARE GOING. that's right. ZERO. i am IT. That means i'm either going to get REALLY CATERED TO (fingers crossed). or be REALLY BUSY refereeing fights and making sure children don't run into the huge pile of sticks that are on fire. who wants to lay odds?

Friday, November 6, 2009

A wedding? really????

Now that the cat is out of the bag, or more appropriately, the dress is out of the closet, i thought i would share with you where we are with whole wedding thing.

There will be no wedding.

Pick yourself up off of the floor, wipe the coffee off of your laptop. We're still getting married, we're just not wedding'ing it. I hinted before we are eloping. But extending the invite to our friends that have made it clear they are up for a party weekend away. So, i'm not sure that counts as eloping when you're taking peeps with you.

It's not a destination wedding. We aren't working with a caterer, a florist, or a church.

Maybe it's a wedelope. That sounds funny. i like it. That's what it is. IT'S A WEDELOPE.

Here is what we know.

We're eloping to NYC, in October. Our date is 10-1-10 (how cool is that date?) i just like typing it.

It might just be the 2 of us as things get closer and things tend to happen that you can't plan, but then again, there might be 10 or 20 of us. Who knows. That's actually kind of fun too, truth be told. Both possibilities excite me. Just the 2 of us entering into this, or being surrounded by friends and having a great weekend in NYC. My absolute favorite place. So either way, i'm good!

As huge fans of Mad Men on AMC - we have decided it will have retro, 1950's vibe.

We know that we want to have a fabulous dinner and then go dancing (even better if the restaurant has live music).

We want to make a weekend out of it - shopping, a show, great food - just a FAB weekend in the city! I am SOOOOOOO excited.

I found my dress. He's found his suit. Without giving the exact dress away - you can peek here and try to find out which one it is: - here's some eye candy from their site:

I found a site full of resources:

We found our photographer:

He's planning our honeymoon and it's being kept secret from me. All i know is that i was told to find my passport. and that he would pack for me. Gotta love that man.

We have no idea where we will stay. We have stayed at several places - all great in the past, but i think somewhere new will be nice. Maybe somewhere with a view of Central Park - in the fall, the leaves are gorgeous.

If any of you have any ideas to share or favorite spots in NYC - please share - i'll be sure to check them out in a few weeks when we head up there for the lighting of the tree at the Rock.

How cool is this???? I know, I know, i'm a grown woman, but STILL... it IS kind of cool.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Meal Planning Monday

How sad is it that i sat down, planned out my meals for the week, made my grocery list, and then trucked off to the store without it? Yes, i came home with a very cheap grocery bill, because i forgot half of the stuff on there- which means, i won the lottery and get to back to the grocery during lunch - WOOOHOOOOOO, good times. good times.

OK. here we go.

Hamburgers, french fries. Yes, i know, not the healthiest, but it is homemade burgers and fries, so maybe that counts for something. Big juicy burger with huge slices of ripe tomatoes with mayonnaise...hmmm. There is nothing better than ripe, fresh tomatoes.

Crockpot chicken and dumplings from Natalie, who i think stole it from someone else... LOL.

Whatever we have at church. Our church caters dinner every Wednesday night for family night - $5 adults, $3 per child. I don't have to cook - hallelujah!

Beef Stroganoff.

Pizza and movie night at home!

Saturday Night
Orange Roughy topped with bruschetta topping. This is a made up recipe that I did on the fly one night because i had everything on hand - and now they all ask for it.

Sunday - no clue.

Orange Roughy Recipe(or tilapia or any white fish for that matter)
I prefer the sweeter taste of Orange Roughy but my kids like the tilapia - go figure. Whatever ends up being on sale wins.

Chop fresh tomatoes - i do about 3 or 4 cups. If you want this to SING - you need to go to the farm stand. period. Don't hit up your grocery store for good tomatoes, it's a waste of time, and these babies are the star of this dish, not the fish.

Chop 1/2 of a sweet vidalia onion.

Chop 2 or 3 stalks of celery

Chop fresh basil - half a bunch.

Chop 2 or 3 cloves of garlic.

Throw together in mixing bowl.

Add some EVOO - i seriously never measure unless i'm baking so i don't know what to tell you here. I add enough to blend everything - probably around a tablespoon? maybe a touch more?

Season with:

put in fridge while you do the fish.

Egg and dredge each filet in Vigo italian bread crumbs.
Spray baking dish with PAM.
Put filets in pan, saltand pepper lightly, put in oven on 350 for 5 min and put a few tabs of butter on each filet. or so (i know, i stink, i seriously eyeball everything - watch the fish and if it looks looks like it's halfway to opaque - turn over. white fish cooks up fast so just keep an eye on it.)
Flip fish over and cook other side, buttering this side as well.

After about 3 or 4 minuts, pull pan out and top w/tomato topping and put back in oven until topping is heated through.

Your done!

Friday, October 30, 2009

A Beautiful life; Answered Prayers.

I have so much to be thankful for this week, that i find myself whispering "really? all of this? in one week?"

It's Friday, and that means that Melissa, at The Inspired Room is hosting Beautiful Life Fridays. I think it's supposed to be about home decor this week. Ok, i know that it's supposed to be about home decor (and btw, please go over there and look at the kitchen pic she has posted. swoooooooon worthy.) but i digress.

My beautiful life Friday is about answers to prayers. I think she would be ok with it.

So much has happened in the last 48 hours that i have to stop, take a breath, and say "God, I am SO thankful".

1) Laura's cancer screen came back CLEAN on Wednesday. Laura is a friend that lived around the corner from me in my old neighborhood, and our sons are the same age, and have gone to school together since day one. I think i may have hugged her too hard or too much on Wednesday at scouts though, lol. I can squeeze pretty hard - but i was so very happy for her and i think i have cried more than a few tears of joy on this in the last few days.

2) My struggle with the school over a poorly executed program that left out children with disabilities ended within the WEEK. I heard back from my son's teacher yesterday that the school had decided NOT to continue participation in the program. The program, though, will continue countywide, so i'm praying hard on this one whether to continue the fight with the schoolboard and the Orlando Magic themselves. I'm not sure i can let this one rest just because my son was addressed.

3) My honey. My man. I was not having the best time of it Wednesday night. He called me from his Miami hotel room, and while i was trying to not let the situations of the week wear on me while we spoke, i cracked. I hate to do that to him. He works unbelievably hard and it is not fair to dump on him like that when he's under the gun at work, and traveling. But do you know what he DID? He came up early yesterday afternoon. I wasn't supposed to see him until tonight, but he walked in the door with flowers and took me off to dinner! It was such a great surprise, and it meant so much. I adore him and am so thankful for his presence in my life.

And that my friends, is why i think i have a pretty beautiful life.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

We fought the School, and we won!

For those of you that read my post about the FCAT awards and how it went so terribly wrong - I AM ELATED to say that the teacher just reached out to me and said that yesterday, at the weekly teacher meeting after school, it was unanimously decided that the school will not paricipate in this program. This is me screaming YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

However, since it is not their program, it is the Orlando Magic's program, that the Magic may elect to mail ticket awards to children. She did say that it's unlikely that that will occur, though.

I am still irritated at the program itself, and at the Orlando Magic, so i'm afraid my gut won't let me stop here.

I feel the program is inherently flawed. Correlations are made each year between socio-economic levels and school participation. I would venture a guess that the lower income student bracket have a higher rate of school dropouts, poor test scores and the like. BECAUSE they can't afford the extra help, the extra push, the after school care that pushes homework, etc. The village that it DOES take. So, furthering that thought, you could say that those that would MOST APPRECIATE the free sports ticket would likely never see this award.

HAVE YOU BEEN TO A PRO-SPORTING event lately? It's EXPENSIVE, i don't care how much money you make.

I must stop typing now, i feel another fight coming on...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

no, THAT's important.

Life is funny.

Your mind can get all wrapped up in things that set your hair on fire and seem SO important at the time.

The cable going out as you set down to a movie you just pay-per-viewed.
A temper tantrum by a child of yours.
A irritating conversation with your spouse.
A really late notice of a time change for a kid's ballgame or practice.

and then, something is said that takes your breath away and makes you go "i get it."

Last night, after getting an email about a last minute cub scout meeting, and rushing around to get dinner, out the door, in the rain, worried about a project at work, and how i'm going to get everything done before this weekend, and and and...

my friend and ex-neighbor, Laura, walked up to the door of the meeting, closing her cell phone and putting it in her pocket.

The first thing she said was "I just got my results, the cancer screen was clean. It's gone."

And that is why everything else doesn't matter.

Laura, i am happier for you than you could possibly know.

Monday, October 26, 2009

A Faith Throwdown. Cause we all gotta have faith.

Sounds ominous, doesn't it?

All "iron-chef" in your face, Bobby Flay inspired. But no, this throwdown is of a different sort. And from my momma. Ultimately from Stormi Omartian, but via my mom.

This throwdown challenge is faith based and i don't think i've ever done this before.

You are supposed to log down your prayer requests to God, and then pray on them 30 days, and then report back any progress on the requests. Simple no? Jot down what you've been whining to God about (that's me by the way...lots of whys, why me's and why nots???) and then seriously pray about it for 30 days straight. At the the end of 30 days return to post about what the outcome was.

We all do decor linkups, project linkups, even menu linkups, but i haven't seen this before. I'm sure i'm not the first person to do this, but it's still new to me.

I'm giving up linky space here to link back to any and all posts on this. I hope that you join me, even more i hope that you spread the word. We could all use a little faith. November 16 we post back whatever we are comfortable with sharing.

My prayer request list for the next 30 days:

1) Closure with my ex. Serious conversation closure.

2) Resolution of the school drama and a decent, acceptable outcome from the school regarding what happened to my son last week.

3) Getting this house sold. There are so many reasons why and none of them dire. But i cannot tell you how much it would mean to me have my children in a neighborhood again.

4) Personal request that i want to keep to myself right now.

It's all in the presentation.

Yesterday was our Sunday School fall festival and Spook-ghetti lunch after service. Instead of it being a potluck, the youth group cooked the dinner and sold tickets for the dinner and the festivities outside.

It served 2 purposes - to raise money for our youth mission trip to someplace ( i know, horrible, can't remember without pulling my bulletin and i'm too lazy to get that right now) and to keep the kids busy so that we could have a church meeting after the lunch while the kids were occupied.

We had a bake-walk for the kids and i volunteered to make cookies or cupcakes or something easy.

But it's never easy, really, is it?

Easy bar cookies or iced cupcakes turned into decorated sugar cookies.

Do you people know how hard it is to decorate a sugar cookie? And how much TIME it really takes? You do? oh, see, i should have read up on this before i said "Sure honey, Mommy will make the BEST cookies out there!"

It's a process.

Scan the pantry: flour - check! Oh wait, this is self-rising, put on list. sugar - check! Butter - check! oh wait, this is salted. put it on the list. Oh, reminder, salt - wait sea salt won't work....anyway you get the picture.

I let Walker make the dough. He likes the kitchenAid mixer we have. I plugged it in, blew the dust off of the top of it, and let him have at it. It started doing this really bad wobbling though, and i looked at him and said "I don't think it's supposed to do that." He looked back at me and in all seriousness said "yes, it is. and if you used it more than once a year you would know that."

Hmm. good point. Ok, smarmy 4th grader - GO MAKE THAT DOUGH YOURSELF then.

So he made the dough, and did the cut outs and i got relegated to do the decorating.

Did i tell you we're setting record heat highs for October again? We are. I bring this up because i would decorate a cookie, ice the cookie, set the cookie aside and come back to cookie and icing would be off of the cookie, on the tray, the table and in some cases the floor.

But there's AC you say? Yes, and there are polar bears too and my son the cookie dough king - says the AC is killing off those fluffy white beasts so we have tried to use it as little as possible. Icing isn't the only thing dripping and falling right now - think hair and makeup. It's not pretty.
Which is why, this picture is of them in the fridge. Keeping their clothes on.

But the cookies didn't come out half bad - i may even get into this more, provided the cookie dough king keeps that wobbling mixer monster away from me.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Chill out. I got this.

Just. one. year.

Heck, i'll even bend farther than that. Just one SEMESTER.

Without an incident, involving one or both of my children and any ONE of the school faculty. Seriously. Please.

I don't have bad children. I, in fact, have the type of children that hold doors open for others, use their manners, and at the dinner table throw people i don't even know into grace. "God, please give the lady at audubon her job back." Those are my kids. They study hard. Yes, it's a never ending struggle to get homework done here, but i know plenty of other mothers in my circle that go through the same thing. every night.

I don't mind. It's my job. A job i wouldn't trade for a million dollars.

But yesterday sent my mom-o-meter helter skelter.

My oldest got out of his grandmother's car and ran up to me after school with tears in his eyes saying that the teacher and principal walked into his class and handed out Magic Basketball tickets to everyone who scored in the top percentile for the FCAT. This is the standardized test that all 3rd graders have to take in Florida to prove that the teachers know what they're doing. That's right. Test the children to make sure the TEACHERS know how to do their job. I'm not bitter. I'll go on. And i apologize now, because there are a gazillion great teachers out there and i'm just mad right now - don't spam me please.

I love motivation. I think it's great. I think there is a time and place for it AS WELL AS A PROPER WAY TO DO IT.

Yesterday during this exercise, everyone EXCEPT my son received a ticket. So, while they called up each and every kid, my son sat there and watched every child in the class get a ticket except him.

Last year, i posted about our struggle with his learning disabilities and his right brain/left ear performance deficit. It has not been easy. The mere fact that my son EVEN PASSED AT ALL was an ENORMOUS victory in our house.

We spent 2 afternoons a week at the eye specialist for vision therapy that insurance did not cover. We spent every Wednesday afternoon at the speech and learning center in College Park - again out of pocket. On days we weren't in some form of therapy we were catching up on the homework that was missed, in addition trying to keep him in football so he would have some semblance of normalcy.

I heard "i'm dumb", "I'm stupid", "this is TOO hard" and "I don't want to go to school" more than any parent should in one year.

When his little brother passed him in reading levels i thought he was going to break down right there and i was going to have to put him in counseling for THAT too.

I am mad. No, I am PISSED.

But I got this. This will not go quietly into the faint dark night. Oh no.

What part of that was encouraging to my son? Seriously??? When it appeared that more than 65% or 70% of the kids were going to get tickets they should have realized it was going from PRAISING excelling children to PUNISHING the ones that barely got by EVEN THOUGH THEY WORKED THEIR BUTTS OFF.

His little tear streaked face begged me NOT to call the school. He said he didn't even want to tell me because he KNEW i would not let this sit. He is right. He doesn't want the ticket. NONE of us want the ticket. We want some teachers and administrators with common sense.

Baby boy, i'm sorry in advance. The wheels are in motion...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

It's an After-Party - all the cool people are gonna be there...

I know it's been awhile since I posted - bad me. I have good reasons. Really. Below is one of them. My last post was about Melissa over at The Inspired Room having a Procastinator's Party and me joining in the fun. And i am....HAVING FUN. Ok, not. I did have fun the first hour. Not so much after that.

I think i lost that lovin' feeling somewhere between "yes, i'm sure we don't need to use spacers" and "WHY AREN'T YOU USING SPACERS??!!??"

For fun, add:
  • Watching Vance get shocked by an exposed outlet and then promptly electrocuting myself on the same outlet 30 minutes later. I'm a slow learner. or as V says, i learn by doing. LOL.
  • Getting the tile on the wall before rushing out to meet my cousin for dinner only to come home and see that some of them had decided hanging on the wall wasn't for them and decided to party with the floor tile and the counter.
  • Blowing out the circuit breaker in Lowes when i took a few tiles in to have them cut. I guess the outlet the wet saw is plugged into trips the circuit every.single.time. For us, it was an on-going event. The tile guys started hiding when they saw us walk down the aisle.
  • Thinking how nice it was to have the job DONE, finito, grabbing a glass of wine and sinking into the couch only to hear Vance scream a really bad word from the kitchen. It seems you CAN screw an outlet cover on too tight. We broke 2 of the tiles that were now set firmly in mortar and grout. and of course, they were cut tiles. not whole tiles. awesome.
All things considered, we did a really good job - see for yourself. However, this is not my cup of tea. uh uh. I would much rather use my fingers to write a check or sign a charge slip to get this done. But it's UP and still on the wall (including the cracked ones because i just can't face that right now. It's too soon. The trauma is still too fresh. Maybe next year.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Procrastinator's Par-tay - count me in - i'll be the one covered in mastic.

It's Tuesday - Tuesdays' are almost as bad as Mondays. BUT - i found something to take my mind off of the drudgery of work. The drudgery of renovation! heh.

Melissa, over at the Inspired Room, is having a Procastinator's Party and is encouraging everyone that has let certain things sliiiiiiiiiiide around the house OR anyone that has been staring at a project for far too long to suck it up and get busy!

Ok, she didn't say "suck it up" that was me talking to my bad self. I NEED THE KICK IN THE PANTS..

you know i had free subway tile....that's been here at least a what better time to get busy.. I have 2 weeks before i have to report back. I wonder if she calls you out if you don't finish your project? I have the man home for most of it. and the children for only half. so that should be enough to get me started.

Here's the before...
stay tuned for the after...

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Save the Ta-Tas

Protect the girls
Scan the sistahs
Moosh the mammories
Hug the hooters
Feel the flesh
Binocle the boobies

WHATEVER you call it - check'em out. October is the month people - take care of those things!

How many people has breast cancer affected in your world?

My count:
My co-worker, Margaret.
My ex's cousin Debbie.
My Aunt Ruth
My Great Aunt Irene.
My good friend Alana.

That's enough.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

I should have known better than to vent to Dad.

What is it about parents that can make a grown woman feel like she's 10 years old again? Only my dad has the ability to totally use one sentence and lower my 5'4" frame down to 3' and leave me looking for words to reply with.

The past couple of weeks I have vented about the ex, the fiance, and the church. I've vented on my blog, to Vance, to my girlfriends and to my parents. My dad was done. He stopped me in mid-stream this past week and said to me "Do you want to be responsible for his soul?"


"Sheri, do you want to be standing up at the pearly gates and have to explain to God why in his name, you pitched such a fit about sharing your church and were so angry about it that it forced him to quit going altogether? I want you to think about it THAT way."

I'm sure the dead silence my dad got back was the response he was looking for. He probably heard crickets while i mulled that over. I don't care how much I wanted to be right, i don't think there were big enough panties to wear to stand in front of God and EXPLAIN THAT. See, that's what you get when your grandfather was a preacher, a dad who never missed a point from the pew.

I pulled out my Kristin Armstrong devotional and un-turned one of the dog eared pages and reminded myself of words that she wrote going through her divorce. The verse she based it on was 1 Peter 3:1.

"If any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives."

Listen to Kristin's words here:
As women, we must be alluring, not pushy. Our behavior shown to our husband, our ex-husband, or any relationship should speak loudly without words. A gentle spirit, a peaceful demeanor, a forgiving heart, and an inspired sense of morality are some features of a godly woman.

Even if a marriage is severed, it does not mean that the effects of a godly (ex) wife is diminished. We will always have some role to play in the spiritual journey of the men in our lives. God created women to be alluring, to invite others into His presence.

Because you are no longer together does not mean you are off the hook. Live well.

She said it much more gently than my dad, but i got the message loud and clear. I am not off the hook.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

A sneaky little post...

Do you souvenir? I do. But not in a souvenir'ish kind of way - like snowglobes, key chains or tshirts that say I heart _________. We do Christmas ornaments for our tree - NYC, New Orleans, Virginia, etc. from everywhere we visit in the year. We have a pewter Empire State Building, a solid brass Fleur de lis, initial ornaments that i can't remember from where, ornaments from Virginia, you name it. The only rules are that they are tasteful, preferrably look expensive, should NOT be expensive, and remind us of our trip.

But see these? These fabulous watercolors? We purchased these on the steps of the Met. Museum of Art in October from the artist, who was painting while he sat in the shade of the trees in Central Park.These are hands down my favorite pieces I have in my house. Except for my children's albums and artwork. I know they're pretty, and yet, they probably do not scream MASTERPIECE to you. But let me tell you why they are so important.

When Vance and I started dating, I was cynical of relationships, and if you have followed me for very long you know i forgot about our first date, had to postpone because i didn't have a sitter, and generally kept him at arm's length for awhile.

We had not been dating very long - maybe a month? When he surprised me with a trip to NYC. I had been before, and it's a long story why involving my ex, but we never left Grand Central Station, so i never got to see much of the big apple.

We spent 4 days there and this is what i remember; I remember him putting his arm around me pulling me into him and it felt like home. I remember spending time sitting in cafes with coffee and walking through Central Park and talking about everything - EVERYTHING. Why my marriage failed, why his didn't work, what we both wanted and didn't want, about our kids, EVERYTHING. I remember having dinner with him near NYU outside at this italian cafe, with little twinkly lights strewn over our heads and just LAUGHING.

Our last day there, we went to the Museum and it was one of those wonderful fall days with enough chill in the air to warrant a sweater, but not much more. And I saw these paintings. One was a Greenwich apartment in the spring, and the other, a vibrant watercolor of the autumn leaves in Central Park. And i had to have them. They represented such a beautiful trip, such a sweet, perfect, moment in time, when everything felt like it was going to be ok. More than ok. It was going to be great.

He will tell you that I cried when we got home because i didn't want it to end. He promised me it wouldn't.

And so, in the not-so-distant future, we are going back again. I'm packing a little differently this go around, that's all i'm saying...

Friday, September 25, 2009

The post about one of my favorite things, that wasn't, because the picture won't upload so now it's about something else.

Blogger isn't cooperating so i will hold a picture post for tomorrow with hopefully some really linky love for us all to share.

In the meantime - i will do a non-picture post (ugh, these are SO boring. I know, I feel ya. But what are you gonna do....)

So, i thought i would share with you what is on the boys' chore list for tomorrow (insert evil grin and background music here).

1. Dust living room
2. Dust mom's room
3. Empty all trash cans in bathrooms, office and kitchen.
4. Clean toilets
5. Wipe down sinks and counters in baths.
7. Litter box
8. Move recycles from kitchen to bin in garage.
9. vaccuum - divide rooms.

Now, i KNOW it looks like a lot for an 8 and 9 year old to do. But trust me, it's not. They divide the dusting and the vacuuming and everything else... so it goes pretty smoothly.

Yes, it's not perfect, and in fact, i have to actually work the bathrooms with them, because they haven't mastered really cleaning the sinks and counters - they just smear the toothpaste around in the sink - BUT the good news there is that this week i actually heard Walker tell Nate not to be messy with the toothpaste because they were just going to have more to clean on Saturday. they know how I FEEL.

And while we're talking about raising up kids that can take care of themselves - here's an easy CHEAT dinner that we accidentally discovered because i was too lazy to really cook (do you see a theme here, because i'm not really trying to hide it...)

We love eggplant parmigiana - but it is not something quickly done. Unless you cheat. I was craving this the other night but was super tired and Walker wanted to help make dinner and as i have said, sometimes their 'helping' is a time sucker. So we improvised. was it perfect? no. was it edible? absolutely, tasty even. And he felt proud of himself for doing it. even better.

Slice an eggplant.
Grease a baking dish big enough to hold all slices.
brush slices liberally with EVOO
Salt, pepper and italian season the slices. (they have this great italian herb paste in a tube at publix in the produce section where the fresh pkgd herbs are and it's mixed with seasoning - outrageous flavor - buy it!)
Put in oven at 350 for about 15 or 20 minutes - enough to tell that it's starting to cook through
Pull out of oven and put tabs of butter or margarine on each slice - pat around so it's distributed around.
Take Vigo breadcrumbs and sprinkle lightly over butter until slices are dusted thouroughly but not glopped on.
Put back in oven for 5 min or so until butter and bread crumbs are toasty.
Pull back out and pour RAGU or any other jar spaghetti sauce over eggplant.
Top all slices with cheese. I know you're supposed to use Mozarella, but i only had provolone - and it was still very yummy.

yes, kids can do this. easy peasy.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Baptist Bootcamp..or child labor...whatever you call it, IT'S FREE.

"BUT MOM, I'M IN MY UNDERWEAR!" Why, yes, yes you ARE. But you're VACCUUMING in your underwear so I MUST take a picture - "BUT MOOOOOOOOOOM, STOP..."

Ah....the joys of chores, and allowances, and small children who want things that cost money.

Melissa over at The Inspired Room hosts Beautiful Life Fridays - and let me tell you, kids cleaning house makes for a beautiful life.

When we joined cub scouts I was ELATED to hear the den leader tell them that their cub scout dues of $4 are due every week and THEY HAVE TO EARN THEM BY DOING CHORES.

I think the clouds parted in the sky, the sun shone bright and angels started to sing....ok maybe not....but it was darn near close.

And yes, i have stopped picking up their room too. I get to have coffee and walk around and oversee. THIS IS WHAT I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR PEOPLE, and it is great. I mean look at this pigsty. Nevermind that it closely resembles another person's bedroom...ahem....i mean, i might have a small pile of laundry that needs to go to the cleaners but hey, i pay the mortgage so i can leave clothes wherever i want.

The list. It causes so much competition. Who gets the GOOD chores. Good chores?? There are good chores? It caused so much angst i had to make them take turns on choosing chores, so one kid didn't get "empty trash cans" and "dust" while the other had to clean the litter box and toilets.

In case you're wondering, it takes all morning to clean this itty bitty house because they do one chore and get a 10 minute play break, and then you have to factor in all the WHINING. From me.
But in the end, i get a clean smelling house, and boys that will one day know how to clean their own house and make their own dinner, and hopefully in the future, their wives will thank me for all the whining i had to do, i mean listen to.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

'Standing on the Promises' does not mean the same as 'sitting on the premises'.

In other words, walk your faith talk.

Can you be OUT of peace? You can. Well, you can FEEL out of peace. I am. At this very moment, I am very much not in a state of peace, a state of grace or state of anything other than being.

I have been spending small moments in the morning and before bed praying for peace regarding my ex and my church situation. This morning, when it was just me and my coffee and my bible promise book - not one scripture regarding peace touched me. None of them felt 'strong' enough or 'powerful' enough to hold me upright for being around my ex in church this morning. They all felt small and meek. I didn't want anything small and meek. I wanted my grandfather and his hell, fire and brimstone sermons somehow justifying my righteous stance. Validation - where was my scripture on validation????

So, i then flipped pages under the heading "anger". Certainly I could find something there, right? I did. Unfortunately, they were all saying the same thing. Be slow to anger, quick to repent. WHAT??? I can't be just ANGRY without APOLOGIZING FOR IT? Well, that's not working for me today.

And then, when i decided that i should just hang it up this morning, my thumb stopped on this:

A new commandment I give unto you. That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. - John 13:34

That is going to be hard. But, I put my face in my hands and said God, if i can't get to "love" today, at least get me to "peace."

I closed my bible, swallowed one last sip of coffee and got in the shower and then went to church.

And then, as we were standing on the front steps talking to the pastor's wife, ready to walk in, He showed up with her and my kids. I mean, it's a big church, with more than one way into the sanctuary. He seriously showed up in perfect time with our arrival.

God, where is my peace? Can't you cut me SOME slack? So, in we go, them in front. They chose their pew and we walked past and sat 3 pews up. As i'm getting Nate settled into the pew, i feel Vance telling me to move down. THEY ARE SITTING WITH US? seriously? IS THIS ANOTHER TEST?

They call the kids up to the front for the lead in to Sunday school, and as I'm leading my son to class, the hymn starts.

"When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,When sorrows like sea billows roll;Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,It is well, it is well, with my soul."

God has a wicked sense of humor.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

This was a GOOD shopping day!

If you know me, you know 2 things:

1) I hate to shop.

When I do, i'm desperate. And then I buy in bulk so I don't have to go back. It is a gene that goes into remission and then pops up maybe once or twice a year.

I blame it on the fact that I work in retail operations, specifically merchandising and inventory. I make sure all those boxes get to all those stores across the country and that all those endcaps get all that fancy signage posted by the right dates and in the right spot. I go into Best Buy, Walmart, any other big box retailer so much to check on things that i HATE going in there at any other time - I'm up at 4am with the rest of the crazies on Black Friday - not to shop - god no -but to make sure that our sales systems are working and that all those boxes made it in time for that madness.

2) I hate to spend money.

This thankfully works with number 1.
But let me clarify. I am terrified of not having a safety net. I'm scared to death that one day i'll wake up to find my identity stolen and my checking account cleaned out. Probably because that nearly happened once.
Someone stole my mail out of my car which was parked in the driveway of my first house and got my bank statement. Made an ID with my name and their picture and cleaned me out in 2 hours. Thankfully, the bank replaced all the money stolen out of my account but that fear - it stays with me all the time. It's probably why i go behind Vance and pick up what he leaves in plain site in the car, like his cell phone, or mail or whatever. It's paranoya OCD.

So..this is what makes today SO freakin great. I went to Goodwill to hunt for a silver platter to chalkboard paint - like my post a few weeks back from Bless Our Nest blog. They had a few, but they weren't in great condition and the silver plate was peeling off of most so i passed - but as i was walking out the door, i saw this:

Isn't that the sweetest dress EVAH??? The best part? It was BRANK SPANKIN' NEW WITH TAGS STILL ON. I got it for $9.99! Cashier had to go and tear the price tag so i can't even brag on the price in the pic - but take my word for it!

And these?

They were $8.00!!!!!! These were from Plato's closet - the re-sale shop down the lane!

And can you tell that THEY HAVEN'T BEEN WORN EITHER??

AN ENTIRE OUTFIT FOR UNDER $20!!! I am one very happy girl tonight!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Angry conversations with God.

Not me, no. I am actually having pretty decent conversations with God lately - usually in the car - by myself. I talk out loud. sometimes LOUDLY. At stop lights I used to get pretty weird looks until bluetooth came out - that was freeing, let me tell you.

Anyway, I went into Barnes and Noble today to pick up another copy of Kristin Armstrong's book for my friend who is going through a terrible divorce. I used that book "Happily Ever After: Walking with Peace and Courage Through a Year of Divorce" after my marriage broke up. I leaned on that book and the bible passages so many times the pages had started to fray, and you could see both coffee stains and tear stains page after page. It was, no pun intended, a god send. and I gave my copy to the church to hand out when i thought i wouldn't need it anymore.

But for those of you that are like myself at all, this will make you laugh out loud. I found this book at the book store today beside Kristin's book and googled the author when i came home. Enjoy.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A FREE Kitchen Makeover! And it's all mine :)

At some point pre-war (also known as pre-divorce) my ex-husband and I took on a 3rd remodel. He hired his friend contractor to gut our master bath. This was a contributing factor to our divorce. Of this I'm sure. Anyway - the friend/contractor didn't really get the math part of his job. So he ordered about 3x the amount of subway tile necessary to do a tub surround.

The tile got stashed in the garage and ultimately forgotten about, even in the what's mine is mine part of the divorce negotiation, until my ex-MIL built a new house last year and found it. She asked if she could have it - and i was like, sure, i don't want it, the house was for sale and my sites were set on moving, not putting in any extra effort into a 2 year old house.

Fast forward to the house coming off the market and remembering that tile and cursing the fact that i had let it go that easy. Then last week, she came by and saw a box of subway tile that i got from HD to see how it would look against the counter, and she told me my ex still had BOXES left over - more than enough to do my backsplash!!! know what she did? She went over there today and scarfed those puppies up for me while the ex was at work! Yippee!!!!

While this isn't what i had decided to do - the box that i had purchased from HD was a creamy tumbled marble - THIS IS FREE WHITE SUBWAY TILE!!! FREE!!!! did i say FREE??!? Well, free at this point - at one point i paid dearly for it, but that's neither here nor there.

I think with the cherry cabinets and the dark gray and black counter - it will be ok. It's a very traditional look, and that's what i want. I think i may do a row against the counter (the formica backsplash will come up) and then run a ceramic rope/braid tile on top of that and then do the traditional subway pattern above that.

Here is the tile out of one of the boxes laid against my countertop:
and here is a look at my cabinets:
I'm up for seeing any inspiration pics you might have stashed away - or any ideas you have for the project - the man and I will be tackling this next weekend - when the kiddos are out of the house. I am SO excited!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Sharing a Cheap Thrill.

No, not THAT kind of cheap thrill, but come to think of it, i probably AM due for one of THOSE.

No, this is a cheap thrill for your pocketbook.

I love candles. I HATE paying Yankee Candle prices. In fact, i have become the anti-yankee snob. Yep, i just don't even go NEAR a yankee candle store. A STORE for goodness sake - if they actually have a STORE, where do you think they're getting that rent from??? Focus Sheri i was saying...i love candles. but i love my money more. Yep. Walmart. I have the strongest candle burning right now - and i only paid $5 for the large jar. It smells up the main common rooms - my great room, kitchen, dining room and i can almost smell it in my office. it is THAT strong.

Both of these below are very strong - both were $5. The green layered one is Pear,Baked Apple and Spiced Fig - and it is such a nice sugary pear scent. I think it's my favorite. The other is a caramel, cinnamon, baked apple mainstay (I threw away the tag and i can't remember the exact name - but it's the orangey-tan layered one - not the tan/cream one)..

Monday, September 7, 2009

Wait, summer...COME BACK....

Yesterday morning, not quite 9 am. One last trip to the water before summer is officially over...

Friday, September 4, 2009

Reminding myself what I love about home.

I don't know what it is about the start of school, and the resuming of packing lunches and un-packing of backpacks (seriously, do they leave ANYTHING at school?? i mean, besides their hoodies, and water bottles, and...) but i start to fall in love with my house again.

This isn't anything new. Maybe fall is my spring. My re-birth. Who knows. Maybe it's just the re-claiming of space that has been occupied by boys non-stop for 3 months straight. Whatever it is, this is about the time I take a look around and go, wow. This is right. This is home.

Standing at the sink tonight, it came upon me like a ton of bricks - that peaceful, cozy feeling. I took this picture (even with the clean dishes that i haven't put away just in view - well at least the colander looks happy there) because it was this simple site that made me happy.

It isn't anything great. It's an old bowl full of fruit for lunches, the back of an old jadeite plate that i put in that stand to hide the ipod stand and remote from the family room side. It will be replaced by something fabulous soon...i promise.

I think i might even have an idea of what i want to do the link and visit her site...isn't this divine? Shannon at Bless This Nest has the warmest home and the greatest ideas.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Thwack! Can you hear me NOW???

That's what i feel like.

I have not had a great week. In fact I had a pretty bad one. It started with the ex's announcement that he was getting re-married. Wait for it. IN 6 WEEKS. Wait for it AGAIN. AT MY CHURCH.


And to add to this one dash of "just for a taste of i'm not done yet" - they showed up at church yesterday. He's been maybe 3 times in 3 years.

I have posted before how i keep trying to get past this. I know what you're thinking because i'm thinking it myself.


It bothers me. It bothers me that he claims this church when it's convenient. It bothers me that we're all going to the same church. It bothers me that i go there to get centered and find peace. It bothers me that it BOTHERS ME. I know better. I am so not a good role model for my boys right now.

I'm sure there is a lesson here. I'm not stupid. I know when God is throwing a lightning bolt for my head - and then when i ignore it - he finds a way to speak to me - LIKE GETTING IN BLOGLAND. oh yea he did.

I open up laptop to see what everyone was up to this weekend - and BAM - one of my girlfriends posts THIS.

You're blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.

9"You're blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That's when you discover who you really are, and your place in God's family.

Where is all this tolerance i claim to have? Pray for me. I obviously need it.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Seriously, Scotland? Seriously??

Show mercy to one who showed no mercy to hundreds.

Let's be honest at least. It wasn't mercy. It was an oil deal. If you're going to kick the victims' families in the teeth at least do it 'open kimono' style and call it for what it is.

This is a shameful day for you.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lord help me, I've discovered Paint Pens.

Remember this post about this site and my yearning to do the same thing? Well, i finally tied the children up found some free time, and ta-dah.....

and here's the dilemma - to bench or not to bench... is it too crowded...too forced? It needs some plants. A lot of plants. Hmmm. And that pillow has to go back to my couch. I"m not putting a $50 Pottery Barn pillow on the porch for Florida summer weather to ruin. I don' t know guys, what do you think?

I see porches like Karla's and i think it works...but then i always think that about other people's houses and never think it works for me...isn't this sweet? (makes me want to carve a pumpkin, even in 90 degree heat today).

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Hey, i just call 'em like i see 'em. Deal.

I just have to say, I'm stealing this because I'm too lazy too write anything creative - AND SECOND BECAUSE IT'S SO DAMN FUNNY. This is a conversation between one of my BFFs and her daughter that she posted on Facebook.

I was cleaning out Maddy's Barbies when I found a trailer trash looking Cinderella one and said "Maddy you can throw this one away you don't even like Cinderella anymore" she said "oh no mom I made her into Taylor Swift"

Monday, July 27, 2009

Yea...right...about that...

While we were on vacation on Anna Maria Island, we did this "eco-tour boat charter" thing where you give a small fortune (i promised the capt she could keep whatever kid threw up over the side first) and they take you around the bay to fish and sand bar hop for half a day.

This is how it went.

Walker: THAT'S our boat??!?

Nate: It has a dent in the side.

: Our captain's a GIRL??

Nate: How old IS she? She looks REALLY young. Are you sure she's old enough?

Vance: Get in the god-$%#& boat.

Me: Can i drink on this boat?

So, we all pile in and motor towards the sandbar. We get there, the capt throws anchor over the side and says we can all hop into the water.

: It looks too deep.

Walker: It does. How deep is it? How do you KNOW?

The teenager captain rolls her eyes, and jumps in to prove the water is shallow enough not to drown the little buggers.

: Sharks. I'm pretty sure sharks come into the bay.

Me, shaking me head violently to the captain, fingers crossed behind my back, imploring her to back me up in my lie.

Captain: Nope. NO sharks. See?

Vance: Get off the god-#$%@ boat for chrissake.

Me: Where is that koozie?

Once in the water, nice captain lady points out all the sand dollars under our feet and the tons of sea urchins every few feet. She even goes underwater and picks one up to show the boys.


In a flash Nate has walked on water and is now on Vance's back, no limb touching the water.

Walker, however, is underwater trying to find what Nate has knocked out of the captain's hand.

Would you like to see what sent my 8 year old Jacque Cousteau into orbit?

This. Not the sand dollar. Nope. See that TINY speck of beige orange on the top? That's a crab. The size of my little pinky fingernail. Not even the whole nail. The size of my nailbed. There were about 10 of them on the underside of the sand dollar.

So pretty much the entire time we were in the water, he was on Vance's back. Poor Vance. It was a long day. And then, we piled back into boat. And promptly ran over a shark. No kidding. Yes, my boys now know that honesty isn't a policy here as much as it's a suggestion.

Then, when we got back to the beach house, the first thing out of Nate's mouth is a direct order to put the TV on Deadliest Catch. That's not the funny part.

The funny part is that he looked me dead in the eye and said "That's what I'm going to do when i grow up."

Reach for the stars babe.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Friend Makin' Monday - 6 degrees removed...or something like that.

I haven't had the urge to write lately - but Natalie over at The Brocks Rock did this and tagged Mamarazzi at Dandelion Wishes who was subbing for Kasey at All That is Good who originated the thought and i thought, well let's see if i can really get all those hyper links in the first sentence of one post....and i think i did it in honor of all of those cyber chickies - here is my first Friend Makin Monday Post.

The rules were to list 5-10 of your favorite here goes.

This is absolutely my all time favorite store. I know, I'm kind of boring that way. What's even more sad is that i really don't like to shop at all - i think i missed that gene - so I go about 3x a year and buy in bulk. I'm not kidding. I will go in and drop $500 to $1500 in one fell swoop on everything from jeans, to dresses to skirts to a trench coat, to accessories. Then i don't shop again for 6-8 months. I hate trying on clothes but i love the way i always feel pulled together because i've had the girls there pull several different things together and make several outfits out of the same 6 pieces with a turn of the accessory. I am lazy. But I am vain.

And more on the vain point....THIS IS THE BEST STUFF TO CALM DOWN THE FLY-AWAY HAIR. This is the only stuff that i have ever put on my hair that makes it extremely shiny and look model perfect - I AM NOT KIDDING - ABSOLUTELY NO FLY-AWAY HAIR OR BROKEN ENDS SHOW. It really lives up the hype and makes your hair look like silk.

yeah, there's a theme here. This really takes away from the lines on your face. Light diffusing, reflecting, i don't know, i just know it works and i've tried Chanel, MAC, you name it and i have gone back and exchanged them every time for this stuff.

The old ipod broke and i broke down and got this mainly for video and then i found out 2 days ago that not only can i load my work email on it (yea, the mac store didn't tell me
that - iphone my ass.) BUT I CAN ALSO SKYPE ON IT, and for $2 extra dollars a month I CAN USE MY MOBILE NUMBER. bye bye two devices and i didn't have to buy the iphone OR subscribe to Verizon - LIFE IS GOOD.

My all time favorite cocktail. I know at least one person reading this agrees.... ;-) (you know who you are)