Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Journal

The day after I found out I was pregnant with Chloe, I went to the store and bought a journal. My first entry was a little unsure and hesitant, as my emotions were so raw and new. I wrote as if I was writing to a teenaged Chloe, and I planned on giving it to her on her 12th birthday. I put my thoughts, advice, dreams, and fears down on the pages of the journal, and I wrote it in faithfully every night. Towards the end of my pregnancy as things got busier, I wrote in it once a week. Then after she was born it tapered down to once a month, then once every few months. When cleaning out our bedroom on Sunday, I found the journal; the last entry I wrote was December 24th, 2005, two years ago. I couldn't believe I let so much time go by without writing to her. That night I wrote several pages in her journal, writing about the changes in our lives, and a few funny stories about her.

I also started a journal for Alivia. I wish I had started it when I was pregnant, but time just flew by too quickly. Her new journal is already filled with several pages, words of wisdom from her mom, advice, chit chat, stories and jokes. I can just picture her as a pre teen or teen, reading the journal and thinking about what her mom must have been like so many years ago. It's also a great place to write down all the cute mannerisms of the girls. I hope it is something they will treasure forever.

If I look back at my childhood, I think ages 12-14 were the toughest for me. So many changes occur, physical and emotional, the boy crazies set in, parents are annoying, friends cause drama, it's such a rough time for a girl! I know how much I would treasure something like that from my mother, and I truly hope my girls will feel the same about my words to them.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Fags and Powers.

This was my conversation with Chloe today as we were driving.

"Mama! Mama! I see fags and powers!"
"What do you see?"
"Fags and powers!"
"Fags and powers?"

I glanced out the window to see that we were passing a cemetary. Row after row of American flags and hundreds of flower arrangements.

Ah, right. Fags and powers.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Annnnd......she's off!

We have runnage!!! Alivia took off like a jet plane. She is now running from room to room, pushing her dolly in a stroller all the way across the house, and climbing all over the place. She is powerful, busy, and incredibly strong-minded. And only 10 and a 1/2 months old.

I am also pretty convinced that she was a dog in her past life. She likes to watch us with eager eyes as we eat, hoping we will drop a crumb for her to gobble up. She enjoys splashing in the toilet, and the other day she licked my face.

When I'm not chasing after the little monster, or entertaining a toddler, I'm thinking about the holiday season. I've been brainstorming affordable gifts for my little spawn. I've decided on a box full of paints and paintbrushes for Chloe. She absolutely lives for painting. She will often bring me a fresh piece of paper and state very matter-of-factly "I paint dis." It is not uncommon for her to also tap her sister on the head and declare "I paint dis too." Whenever I pull the art box out, she starts to jump up and down and shake and sputter and get really giddy, and I start to think I should call 911 or something. Paint is her toddler drug. She has to get her fix every day.

Our local craft store had bottles of paint for a buck apiece, so I grabbed a slew of colors, a handful of brushes, and a few packs of construction paper. Threw it in a shoebox, tied on a ribbon, and voila....crack-in-a-box!

Friday, November 30, 2007


What did I get myself into?

I apologize for the fuzzy image. This would be my ten month old sitting on top of her sister's table, clapping and smiling because she is so proud of herself. She has been climbing for several weeks now, the couch, the chairs, the bed, her exersaucer, everywhere. I can't take my eyes off of her for a second. As a result, I haven't been to the bathroom in four days, but hey, peeing is overrated anyway.

She can walk from one end of the house to the other. Even though our apartment is tiny, it is still a huge feat for such little feet. She can walk halfway across the room, stop and pick up an item, straighten back up and continue on her merry way. She has a fascination with Forbidden Objects. Batteries are her favorite (she can even pop them out of the remote), second only to pennies, and sharp objects.

Good thing she is so stinkin' adorable.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Long, Long Break.

Well, that was the break to end all breaks! I had major blogger's block and couldn't think of a single thing to write that wouldn't make everyone slump forward onto their keyboards, drooling all over the spacebar.

You know, life has been pretty busy and boring. Busy with day to day stuff, you know, two kids under 3, another kid under 25, keeping up with the household, errands, bill paying, yada, yada, yada. But boring because nothing exciting has happened lately. Well, exciting things happen all the time, like Ali figuring out how to wave, or Chloe pooping in the potty. Fun stuff.

So...umm....I can feel you start to nod off, so here is a super quick update on my little monkeys, then I'll let you get back to your drooling.

-Talking up a storm.
-Funny, funny girl. (She likes when I lightly blow on her chest and face, it cracks her up. So the other day she ran up to me and said "Hey mom! Blow me!")
-Crazy imagination (yesterday her french fries were giants going through the ketchup swamp, and they got in a fight with each other so she punished them by biting off their heads.)
-Loves to read.
-Currently on a vegetable strike. Should end around January of 2018.
-Enjoys long walks on the beach.
-Likes when her sister copies her. Encourages her sister to follow her into the bathroom, shows her how to unroll the toilet paper, then runs to me and says "Mama, baby did a bad in da bashroom!"

-Up to 8 steps in a row.
-This girl is small but she packs a powerful punch. Don't mess with her if she is tired. Or hungry. Or grumpy. Pretty much, don't mess with her.
-She is small but we have nicknamed her "The Pit" She eats a massive amount of food, more than the rest of us.
-Her hair has grown, and is now about 1 1/2 inches long! Still orangey-red.
-7 teeth and counting! She has four on top and three on bottom, and several more on the way.
-Almost 10 months old.
-Still in Mommy's bed, but about to be evicted.
-Enjoys pulling the wipes out of the container, unrolling the TP, dumping out boxes of toys, throwing her food, and pooping at inconvenient times.

Things are good! Although Ali is currently fighting a nasty bout of bronchitis.

Hope all my blends (that would be blogger friends) are doing well!

Saturday, August 18, 2007


Today we went to a Chinese buffet. It seems like every Chinese buffet (at least in the greater Idaho area) has a plentiful stock of jello, cottage cheese, and mashed potatoes and gravy. Didn't you know those are the staples of a Chinese diet?

So I got a plate with one jiggly square of bright red jello, a small serving of mashed potatoes with thick gravy, and a tiny scoop of cottage cheese. All of this with the expectation that Ali would reject it with a tight lipped shake of her stubborn head.

But she opened wide for the spoon with a miniscule amount of melt-in-your-mouth jello. And then swallowed it! Sweet success!

She also gobbled up the cottage cheese, but spit out the mashed potatoes.

7 squares of jello, and two large scoops of cottage cheese later, she was finally satisfied. I know jello is not the most nutritionally sound food to feed to my seven month old, but at this point if she would eat a Krispy Kreme, I'd gladly oblige. (As long as she got her own, I don't share Krispy's, even with cute babies). She is getting skinnier by the day because she is so darn busy. She is beginning to cruise along the furniture, although she is still unsteady. She is also quite the food snob. Even her baby food has to be the exact right temperature and texture or else she chucks it at me. At most she will eat about an 1/8 of a 1/4 of a jar. So her jello and cottage cheese binge is perfectly timed.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


Life has been crazy. Hectic, insane, wild, nuts, busy.

I was horribly sick for about a week, and it is just barely starting to taper off. You know how it is when your actual cold is gone, but your nose still drips and your head lightly throbs for ages afterward? Yep, that's me. Both girls got sick too, so our house was pretty miserable for quite awhile.

In other news, I've started pulling my hairs out one by one. I'm down to a few patches of hair, and those are going later today. My little monster has been driving me to my breaking point. She is at this absolutely adorable stage where she screams bloody murder when I walk out of the room. Actually, she does it when I walk more than two feet away. Or when I set her down. Or when I stop talking to her. Or when I look at someone else. Or when I devote a fraction of a percentage of my attention on someone other than her. It is getting positively ridiculous.

Chloe has also started a lovely stage in which she can't ask for anything in a normal voice. Every single request must be issued in the highest, whiniest voice you can possibly imagine. And the word 'no' triggers the need to stomp her feet, throw herself on the ground and wail. That usually sets Ali off and she starts shreiking too, complete with crocodile tears. This is usually the point where I start yanking hairs out.

But things haven't been all bad. I started a scrapbook! I spent 20+ hours in the past few days working on my book. I have been meaning to do this for three years, and just barely started. I wouldn't earn a blue ribbon by any means, but at least I'm starting.

Although now the scrapbooking bug has bit me big time, and I want to go drop a G at the scrapbooking store.

So, screaming babies, whiny toddlers, sick Mamas, and not enough time/money for my new hobby. That's my life!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Thank You Mom in Law

I decided to participate in the group writing contest hosted by Jordan at MamaBlogga. Here is my entry (just in the nick of time!), entitled Thank You Mom in Law.

Mom-in-law, I want to thank you for raising such a wonderful son. I also want to thank you for giving him to me on our wedding day, although you did hold on tight until the very last second. In fact, I nearly broke a well manicured nail trying to wrench him out of your eagle-like grasp. But you handed him over, and for that, I thank you.

I would also like to thank you for the many, many hours you spent taking care of your family. Your son is proud that he had a stay at home mother at his beck and call, ready to serve the family diligently. You set the bar so very, very high for your son's wife, and for that, I thank you.

You spent so many hours taking care of your children when they were ill. This helped your son learn that someone would always be there to rub his back, fetch his blankets, and wipe his nose. You spent many hours slaving over a hot stove, dishing up everyone's plates, jumping up to grab forgotten condiments, clearing the table, and washing the dishes, never once expecting (or receiving) a thank you. You were delighted to follow your children around with a dust buster, snatching up each crumb before it hit the floor. Your children came home from school to see a freshly made bed, neatly vaccuumed bedroom, and a nice homemade snack waiting for them. You spent every waking moment doing something for someone in your family, and for that, I thank you.

You gladly took your husband's coat when he came inside, lined his boots up neatly in the proper place, and smiled when he threw his dirty socks next to the laundry hamper, instead of in. You spent hours ironing clothes- you could make the perfect crease in a pair of boxer shorts! You spent hours perfecting your cookie recipe- you could have made money off of those chocolate chip beauties! You spent hours scrubbing the toilet- anyone would have been glad to rest their hiney upon the gleaming throne! You were always armed with a bottle of homemade cleaning solution, a dustrag, and a giant smile on your face, and for that, I thank you.

Although you felt that no one would ever be good enough for your son, you still welcomed me into the family with half open arms. You never failed to impart your wisdom on to me. I was blessed with your advice in many areas of my life, including: my marriage, my parenting skills, my finances, and even my weight. You were always willing to share tips and ideas for improving my life, and for that, I thank you.

When it comes to your son's children, you really shine. You love your granddaughters with such a passion, like a grandma lioness protecting her cubs. Of course, you shower them with too many sweets, inappropriate cartoons, and uber late bedtimes, but you also shower them with love. Lots and lots of pure, unconditional love. And for that, I thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

Throughout your son's childhood, you were there to clean up after him, feed him, make his bed, and keep him happy. You were always there to fulfill every need he could have. You might have been there too much, but you were always there. And for that, I thank you.

You raised your son with the expectation that his wife should do as much as his mom did. The pressure and responsibility can be a bit much, and to say our household is different than yours used to be, is an understatement. But please know, that you are appreciated. Appreciated for your undying love for your family, your constant need to please, even your unsolicited advice. You are appreciated for all of your hard work, your sense of humor, and especially for your mouthwatering chocolate chip cookies and your gleaming toilets.

You gave me your son, my children's father, and my best friend. And for that, I thank you.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Vacuums and Vodkas

Hello, my name is Julie. And I am a binge cleaner.

Just like a binge drinker, but with a broom instead of a beer. Like a college co-ed, I abstain for most of the week. Then the weekend hits, and I find myself spending hours cleaning as much as I can.

After a weekend of heavy drinking and partying, the binge drinker usually needs a day or two to recover. She rests in a dimly lit room, pops Advil, and runs to the bathroom. She vows to the toilet bowl "I will never drink that much again!"

Likewise, the binge cleaner needs to recover after a weekend of heavy scrubbing. She collapses on the couch, the lingering scent of cleaning fumes still thick in the air and vows "I will never clean that much again!"

But alas, the weekend comes, and with it the promises of mops for one, and martinis for the other. One throwing trash out, the other throwing tequila up. Both will probably spend time on their knees, one scrubbing the floor, and the

As much as I loathe cleaning, I much prefer it over raging hangovers and cheap beer.

Friday, July 13, 2007


Pretty please with a cherry on top?

With sprinkles?

And nuts?

And a generous dose of whipped cream?

And big warm globs of ooey gooey hot fudge?

Please, oh please, just let me SLEEP!!!???

I'm not quite sure who I am begging. Maybe it is the Exhaustion Elf? Dream Fairy? Pillow Princess? I'm not sure who grants sleep wishes, but I desperately need some help in the Zzzz department. I haven't had a good night's sleep in three and a half years. I've been rolling out of bed and waddling my big pregnant self into the bathroom to pee every ten minutes, or attaching a baby to a boob, rocking an infant to sleep, entertaining toddler bedtime stalling tactics, or catching up on hours of TIVO goodness.

However, I really have no excuse now. Ali is sleeping through the majority of the night, Chloe snoozes like an angel, my bed is nice and cozy, and the cup of warm milk runneth over. So, why can't I sleep?

The only benefit of being a raging insomniac is getting so much 'me time'. In three nights I have read four Harry Potter books, spent a few hours in long hot baths, and organized a few kitchen drawers.

It is a miracle though, I am feeling a bit sleepy tonight. Maybe I'll go stare at the ceiling and silently plead with the Fairy SnoozeMother for a few hours. Insomnia bites.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Eek! Big decisions!

I am on the brink of a major decision in my life. I have decided to go back to school. This is very scary for me, but I am also excited.

However, it is not that easy. I have been having a lot of conversations and arguments inside my head as to what I want to do when I "grow up". I have three different careers that I would really love to pursue. They are very different, all three have many pros and cons, and they all vary in salary.

The three careers I have narrowed it down to are sanitation worker, forklift operator, and receptionist.

Just kidding, I really had you there didn't I? Anyhoo, my three choices of professions are.....drumroll please........


I know, very random choices. Ever since I was a wee one, I dreamed about being a teacher. I loved school, even high school. I had some fantastic teachers that really made a difference in my life. I started school three years ago, with every intent of pursuing my teaching dreams. But a certain red haired pixie came along and forced all school related thoughts right out of my exhausted brain. I planned on going back, and I did for one semester, but it was much harder than I expected.

But the past year I have been so fascinated by the health care industry. I can totally picture myself as a nurse, specifically an OB or pediatric nurse. The health care industry is ever growing and is one profession that will always be around. I have always been fascinated with the human body and biology. Our local college has an amazing RN program. It is very competitive, but a really fantastic program.

And the writing thing...something I have always, always wanted to do. I have a story that I wrote when I was only four years old about Santa Claus coming into a house through the fireplace and tripping over the striped cat that was stretched out. I had a notebook that I was constantly writing short stories in. I have hundreds of ideas floating around in my head about what I want to write. Magazine articles, a collection of short stories, a novel, a young adults series, I want to do it all!

It's so scary to think of finding something I want to do forever. I won't lie, money is somewhat important to me, but I really want something I can be passionate about. Because if you don't love your job, you're screwed. I want something that is family friendly and allows me to spend a lot of time with my kids. I want to make a difference! I am going back to school this fall and taking a few more of my core classes. That will give me a little more time to decide what I want to do. You know what though? I love school! I really enjoy classes, homework, essays, even tests!!

Some major decisions to make, a lot of responsibility and pressure to worry about. Scary stuff!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Ali's Rules

Alivia's Rules

1) I rule this roost. Mommy may think she is in charge but she is just in major denial. The world revolves around ME.

2) If you think a schedule would work wonders for me, please refer to rule number 1.

3) If I am crying, you may only pick me up to console me IF, and I repeat, IF, you are my Mommy. If you are my Daddy, or Grandma, or some other person, don't even attempt it.

4) I will only sleep curled up next to Mommy. I have to be holding her pinky finger, I must be rotated exactly 170 degrees to the East, and I have to be wrapped in the same blanket.

5) Mommy, if you attempt to move away from me once I am sound asleep, I will know. I will wake. I will cry.

6) Don't even think about feeding me those nasty solids. If you try I will clench my lips and thrust my tongue out at you. If you try a second time, I will bat at the spoon and fling goop everywhere. If you try a third time I will blow sweet potato rasberries all over you. If you try a fourth time, I start to think you aren't all that bright Mom.

7) I love my sister. If she cries, I cry harder. If she laughs, I laugh too. If she falls down, I laugh again.

8) Sometimes when I am happy, I will entertain myself. I will play on the floor, I will work on my motor skills. I will laugh, and giggle and smile. Enjoy these times.

9) Naps are for wussies. We don't speak of that four letter word in my household.

10) If you have any questions or concerns about any of my mannerisms, please feel free to read rule number 1.

Monday, July 2, 2007

50th Post!

Yay for fifty posts!!

Life has been crazy, crazy, crazy. I had a super busy weekend. Hubby went on a three day bachelor party. Sheesh! A big group of the guys went camping and fishing, they really had a blast. So I invited my cousin to stay the weekend with me. She is 14, and both of the girls really love her. I had a lot of fun staying up late, giggling and chatting. But man, I am really appalled at how 'grown up' teenagers are. Doing drugs, having sex, sneaking out. My cousin isn't doing those things (yet anyway) but all of her friends are. It's scary. We went swimming on Saturday for my younger cousins' birthday party. It was a lot of fun, and I really slathered a ton of sunscreen on both girls. I must have missed a spot on Ali's arm though because the poor thing got burnt. I completely forgot about putting sun screen on me, and I am super crispy and red. Then on Sunday my mom and I went to visit my friend and her new little baby. Such a sweet little thing! She is still teeny, only 5 lbs 3 oz, and still in the NICU, but she is beautiful! Then we did a whirlwind of power shopping, and lots of driving back home.

All this week I'll be catching up on housecleaning! Should be fun times.

I've been reading all about the huge 4th of July giveaway at 5 Minutes For Mom for quite a while. In true procastinator fashion I waited until now to enter though! Just in the nick of time! You have to check them out, they have some amazing things to give away!


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Really Fantastic Contests!

Is it cheating to put them all in one post? I hope not!!! I have stumbled upon some wonderful giveaways!

First is a wonderful sling giveaway from Stephanie at Adventures in Babywearing. The sling is a KimzKreations. She is giving away a Solarveil ring sling! I've never used a solarveil RS before, but it would really come in handy. Especially since I have such a pale baby with sensitive skin! I really love the pink and the turquoise slings Kim has. Fun giveaway!

And holy Bling baby! Check out the amazing giveaway at Pinks and Blues. This one is super easy to enter too. Love love love it!

I also love Sheena's giveaway. It's for a $50 gift certificate to Kangaroodle. They have the cutest, cutest, cutest stuff there! I love this frog pod bath toy storage, since we have a billion bath toys that are constantly cluttering the bottom of the shower. This watermelon blanket is to die for as well! I love the bright colors. I really love all of their stuff!

I love me some giveaways!

Monday, June 25, 2007


Alivia has really been acting like she is ready for solids. She freaks out and starts panting like a dog when she sees food. And she starts frantically grabbing at my spoon when I am eating. So I mixed up a delicious concoction of bland rice cereal and warm formula. Yum-o!

At first she got really excited, but she pushed it all back out with her tongue. We tried several times, but she didn't really get any. The best part though was when big sister saw me feeding baby and wanted to try.

She said "Want oh-mill!" I guess it looked like oatmeal to her. I told her that it was baby's food and I didn't think she'd like it. I guess I said the magic words because she really put up a big fuss over not getting "oh-mill". So I put some on a spoon and let her try it. She said "Yum!" and opened wide. The texture hit her first and she gagged. Then the taste of the formula hit her and she shook her head and ran to the garbage can yelling "No! No!" I felt bad laughing because it must have really been gross. But she learned her lesson!

Then I went to feed baby more and she came running over yelling "No baby! No eat it!" Hahah! I'm such a mean mommy!

Friday, June 22, 2007

Hug Your Babies

My nephew's friend died yesterday. She was just six. :( She had some medical problems at birth, but she outgrew them, and lived a normal healthy life for six more years. She had flu like symptoms for a few days, then died in the middle of the night. I never met this little girl, but my sister is good friends with her mom. I can't even imagine (and don't want to) the anguish and heartache of losing a child.

It makes my heart hurt to think about this little girl's family. It makes me so grateful for my family and everything I have. Even if it seems like things suck sometimes.

Tonight I went and sat on Chloe's bed after she had been asleep for a few hours. I stroked her soft face, and brushed the hair out of her eyes. Her chest rose and fell slowly and her breath was soft and even. I cried silently, the tears falling from my face on to her pillow. I cried for a little girl who won't get to see second grade. I cried for a mom who is feeling so empty right now. I cried for my girls who are going to feel so much pain and hurt in their lives. But most of all, I cried because I am so overwhelmed with thankfulness. My world will stop if something happened to them. But I know I just need to kiss them, hug them, hold them close and pray that I get to keep them forever.

So hug your babies tonight. Every night.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Menu planning FRIDAY!

I like to plan my meals the week before instead of at the beginning of the week. I do a big grocery shopping trip every two weeks on Saturday or Sunday night. I do the shopping late at night, once the kids are in bed. My girls are good shoppers, but it is nice to get a mini break. Plus at that hour it is nice and UNcrowded at our grocery store.

I do a few in between trips for fresh produce, milk, or a specific ingredient. But I try to plan my meals for two weeks and get all that I can at once. I make a tentative plan, but I have been known to switch days around depending on what sounds good and how much cooking I want to do that day! So my plan is...

Week 1
Chicken and Rice Bake
Steamed Veggies


Chicken Stir Fry
Brown Rice

Homemade BBQ Chicken Pizza (with BBQ sauce, onions, bacon, cooked chicken)

Home fries

Week 2
Beef Macaroni Casserole
Steamed veggies

Chicken Skillet Dinner

French Dip sandwiches

Baked Potatoes

Breakfast for dinner (Pancakes or French Toast, Scrambled eggs, Hash browns)

Ok, so we aren't the healthiest people around! But hey, at least I'm cooking dinner every night. I used to be the queen of heating up a can of soup and calling it dinner.

I also serve a green salad with almost every dinner. And when I grocery shop I buy low fat or fat free, organic, and fresh as much as possible. We're getting a little healthier, slowly but surely.

The beef macaroni casserole is one I tried out recently and liked. I just sauteed ground beef (93% lean), garlic and onion, then added a jar of traditional spaghetti sauce (I was going to make my own but was out of tomato sauce). I simmered that for awhile. Then I boiled large elbow macaroni until it was al dente, drained it, then mixed it all together and poured it into a casserole dish. I shredded some cheddar and monterey jack cheese and mixed it with some bread crumbs, then sprinkled that on top. I baked it at 375 for about 15 minutes until the cheese melted. Chloe kept asking for more, she really liked it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


Can I have a poor me moment?

AAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!! I am going crazy. It just feels like I am surrounded in chaos, messy house, crying baby, whiny toddler, burning dinner, it just never ends. And it's not the peaceful kind either. It feels like I get one part of my life under control (marriage is going much better) and then something else goes down the potty.

Alivia got up no less than thirty times last night. It goes like this.

Rock baby for anywhere from 5 to 45 minutes.
Lay baby down.
Mommy lays down and fights insomnia for a few hours.
Baby rolls over to tummy.
Baby wakes up.
Mommy wakes up.
Mommy rolls baby back over.
Baby goes back to sleep for half an hour.
Mommy fights insomnia, then drifts back to sleep.
Baby rolls back to tummy.
Baby wakes up.

Etc, etc, etc. All night long. I've tried putting pillows next to her (down by her legs, not her face) but that doesn't stop her. We have a sleep positioner but it is too small for her. I can't figure out how to keep her on her back or side!

And then a family member has the freakin audacity to suggest moving her to a crib. WTF is that going to do? Then I will just have to physically get out of bed thirty plus times a night. And please tell me where a crib is going to fit in this cardboard box of an apartment? Squeezed in our bedroom so we won't be able to get out of bed? Squeezed next to Chloe's bed so they can wake each other up all night? In the kitchen? On the porch?

Sigh. I just feel like I am in a sea of stress and frustration, and my head is barely above water.

Not to mention my newly mobile baby. I was hoping I would have a few more months, but my luck isn't that great methinks. She is crawling (slowly still), army crawling (lightening fast), sitting (a bit wobbly), and rolling (all over). She just wants to get up and go like big sissy.

This brings me to my next and biggest source of frustration. This eensy teensy weensy little apartment. It's tiny. It's beyond tiny. It's miniscule. Yet we have managed to shove a tremendous amount of junk and useless crap into every single corner. Hubs has no less than 6 broken printers laying around that he is going to fix "sometime soon." Well, honey, they have been there for three years, your timer just ran out. I just want to grab a giant garbage bag and throw every thing away. I just filled four boxes with toys, and we still have an astounding amount of playthings laying around. I clean the house spotless, put everything in it's own place, and two days later it looks like a tornado has come through. Husband and I are both pack rats and hate to throw things away and we are terrible about picking up after ourselves, but this is getting ridiculous. We either need to get rid of 1/3 of our accumulated crap, or get a bigger place. Well, we need a bigger place anyway, two mini bedrooms and a bathroom that you can't even turn around in aren't really cutting it. But hey, it's cheap. Don't even get me started on money.

GAAAAAAAHHHHH! It's just too damn much for one person to handle. Granted, the majority of it is stuff I can fix (like my weight, the messy house) but instead I think I will just wallow in my self pity and whine to my online buddies.

Monday, June 18, 2007


Friday, June 15, 2007

Sweet baby!

Have you ever wanted to eat your child? Not in a cannibalistic way, but in a munchable, juicy, delicious way?

I just want to munch on her big round cheeks. I want to nibble on her roly poly thighs, and bite each teeny perfect toe.

Sometimes I have to grit my teeth really hard to avoid munching on her! She is so yummy!!!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


"Chloe, do you want juice or milk?"
"You may have milk, or juice."
"Ok, you get milk."
(Pouring milk in cup)

Monday, June 11, 2007

Sorta Crunchy!

My good friend Megan has inspired me to write out my parenting practices and philosophies. She labels herself as 'Sorta crunchy' as in, she practices Natural Family Parenting and Attachment Parenting, but is not 100% "crunchy". She explains it much better, click on her linky to hear all about it! :)

I am similar to Megan in several of our parenting ideas. Here are some of my thoughts...

I love Megan's description of 'child led weaning' instead of 'extended bf'ing'. I am one of those women who did every possible thing that I could, I spent hours researching, I took herbs and ate everything I should, I drank gallons of water, nursed as often as baby would let me, and yet my body did not produce enough milk. I believe breastfeeding is one of the best things you can do for your sweet little babe and applaud every woman who has at least tried! Hopefully the third time's the charm for us! (don't worry, not anytime soon!)

Organic/Natural food:
I was a vegan for many years. I loved how great I felt, and the slimmer hips weren't too bad either! I started eating junky food when I was pregnant with Chloe, and I guess I just never stopped. I've slowly been getting better, and I just recently did a huge grocery trip, and I'm up to my ears in fresh fruits and veggies (most organic). I hope Chloe will have a taste for healthy foods, I know it is important to expose her to a wide variety of nutritious foods NOW, so she'll eat well for the rest of her life. I want her to learn that not everything has to be smothered in cheese, or fried, or rolled in sugar, or processed, or passed to her through a drive thru window!

This is a passion of mine. Much to the shock of my in laws and family, I absolutely love having a baby in my bed. I've taken extra measures to make my bed a safe sleeping space for both of us. I know Alivia feels so safe in our bed, right next to Mommy. Plus it made night feedings a breeze!

Gentle Discipline/AP parenting:
I am firmly planted on the "no spanking" side of the fence. I also don't yell or get angry when she gets in trouble. The punishment matches the offense, so if she writes on the wall, she needs to sit down and scrub it off. If she dumps out a box of toys, she must put them all back. Like the majority of Moms, I've lost my temper before, but that was usually when one or both of us was sick, or when I was pregnant. I strongly believe that children learn by example. So if I show her to be calm, fair, gentle but firm, and consistent, she will follow my lead. She is SO well behaved in public, she can shop for hours, and loves to go to resteraunts to eat. I also praise the heck out of her when she is behaving well or doing something nice for someone else. I always stop and ask myself "How would I have wanted MY mom to react if I was 2?"

I think I love babywearing the most because it is just so dang convenient! For example, grocery shopping. If I put Chloe in the front seat area, and the big bucket carseat in the back, where do the groceries go? Or taking a walk...we don't have a giant expensive double stroller, so Chloe goes in the singleton, or walks, and Ali goes in a carrier. It is just so easy and simple, and so comforting for a fussy baby.

Natural Child birth:
Women have been having babies for thousands of years. Way before doctors and hospitals and epidurals ever existed. Child birth should be a beautiful, calm, gentle passage into life, rather than a forced, monitored, hectic thrust into the bright noisy world. That being said...I was induced with my first, and had my water broken with my second. I also had IV drugs both times around. Don't get me wrong, I am SO grateful that we have modern medicine around. Since I live in a small town, and I have difficult pregnancies, homebirth or even a midwife assisted birth are not options available to me. I love to hear about natural births, and live vicariously through women who can have their babies at home. But I think all women who have given birth are SuperMoms!

No circumcision:
Since the hubby is stingy with those Y chromosomes, I haven't had to worry about circumcision yet! But if we are blessed with a son in the future, he will remain intact. I won't pierce my girls' ears (until they ask) for the same reason...Their body, their choice!

Now my uncrunchy things..

No cloth diapering. (I am horrible at laundry anyway!)
No delayed vax. (Although we did opt out of the chicky pox vax.)
No homeschooling. (I can't even sing the ABC's properly)
Not very earth/eco friendly. (I still don't recycle *blush* and use too many natural resources, although I have switched to cloth grocery bags)

I also feel compelled to add....I totally respect other points of view and parenting practices (within reason...circ'ing yes, smoking in a car with kids, no). I am amazed at how much my parenting has evolved over the past two years. I'm proud of all of the advice I didn't take, and instincts I followed. And major kudos (organic kudos of course) to Megan. I really have learned a lot from her! Thanks Megan!

Fun stuff!

What a fantastical giveaway! Stephanie at Adventures in Babywearing is hosting a great giveaway from MamaKanga. I just browsed through their site, I love all of their stuff! I have really enjoyed babywearing this time around. I have used ring slings, pouches, and Mei Tais. I use a MT the most, especially for shopping and walks with the toddler. With my bad back, it is absolutely amazing how it distributes the weight just right so I'm not hurting even after several hours of baby wearage.

If I won, I am torn between a beautiful Gypsy Mama Bali Baby Wrap and this mouth watering CatBird Baby Mei Tai. Gorgeous stuff!

Thanks Megan for directing me there! :)

Monday, June 4, 2007

Take a breather!

I have such a busy summer coming up. This weekend was a super busy one, and I am glad it is over! I had such a blast though. I co-hosted a friend's baby shower, which was a lot of fun. I can't wait for that baby to get here!! I also went to a cousin's graduation party which was fun too. I think I might have had too much cake though. *blush*

I remember the summers when I was younger. I kept so busy that the summers just flew by. Summer camps, swimming, camping, sleepovers. I wanted to keep busy, but I also wanted to savor every moment of freedom before school started all over again. Those days went by so quickly.

Summer camp was one of my favorite places in the world. My second year of church camp, I was best friends with everyone from our church who went. The ride to camp in our big yellow bus (the 'banana van') was a blast. We sang, and joked, and laughed the whole way there. There were only a few girls, and a group of boys, one of whom was my boyfriend. We had so much fun together, but rules regarding PDA were very strict. We used to sneak into the forest behind the lodge and kiss. Not any heavy petting, just innocent smooches. One time we snuck back there with another set of friends who were dating. Everyone else was in the lodge hanging out before lights out. A counselor walked by and shined the flashlight towards us and asked if we had a chaperone. My boyfriend was very tall and had a deep voice for only being fifteen. So he said "Yes, I am a counselor, I was just checking on these guys." The other counselor said "Ok, see ya back at the lodge!" And continued on his merry way. I still get a good laugh over that night!

I had so much fun in church. Although I do feel bad about a few things I've done while in the House of God. And in the Van of God. Many a truth or dare was played in the backseat of the van. And right before youth group, a few of us went behind the church and smoked a cigarette. We would also drive over to the next town and go roller skating. Our van driver was older and somewhat deaf, so we got away with a lot. I'm not sure why we thought this was a good idea, but we busted open those glow necklaces rubbed the flourescent gel on our teeth, then freaked out passing cars as we flashed our eerily bright grins! Ok, and this one is really disgusting. We had this one spot in the back of the van, on the ceiling. We would stick our chewed gum up there and squish it in, there was probably thirty pieces of old old old dried gum up there. To be in our 'cool club' you had to lick the chewed gum. Haha! It was funny then, but makes me cringe now. Or we would sit in the backseat, facing the car behind us, and write funny signs and hold them up. We got a lot of glares and a few middle fingers. On one retreat, I snuck off with the same boyfriend and we made out in a church closet. Oh and we played Spin the Bottle in the church basement. Oh, and I learned a bit about God too! LOL!

Anyway, boy I miss those summer camp years. When my kids grow up a bit and are interested in camp, I would supremely enjoy being a counselor. I remember having some great heart to hearts with my camp counselors. What a great opportunity to be a good role model to a group of girls. Plus I think it would be fun to get a bit giggly and paint each other's toenails and laugh about boys. I think I just want to be a kid again! I also can't wait until my girls are old enough to enjoy camping. I would love to go for a weekend to our favorite lake, and have each of them bring a friend. I used to love when my parents let me bring friends along on camping trips. We would go off and explore and swim and hike during the day, then play board and card games with my parents at night. I remember my dad teaching my friend to fish (she was raised by a single mom), that memory makes me a little teary eyed still.

I want to be one of those cool moms. And I was telling my mom yesterday that it is really weird, but I can't wait to be a grandma! I just can't wait to spoil my sweet little grand kids, and keep them for the weekend. And by then I will be a mother in law. I swear, I will be the best mother in law in the world! I have just learned from other people's experiences with their mother in laws, and my own, and I just know I will be so great! I hope I have a son though, so I can have a daughter in law. We'll do lunches out, shopping trips, heartfelt chit chats. Although who am I kidding? No one will ever be good enough for my children!

Long rambling post to say that I like summer and I can't wait to be an old grandma! Haha!

Thursday, May 31, 2007

A blast from the past!

The Grocery Store
Then: Giggling and blushing over the hot guy who winked at me by the tampon aisle.

Now: Tears of joy and excitement over a sale on organic produce.

The Stop Light
Then: Throwing my blond tresses over my shoulder, cruising Main Street with a car full of giggling teenagers, jamming to the blasting music.

Now: Retrieving lost binkies, brushing my greasy, unwashed hair back into a ponytail, turning up the radio to drown out the screaming from the backseat.

The Library
Then: Looking through the dictionary to see what "sex" meant, then giggling hysterically with my grade school friends.

Now: Paying fifteen dollars in late fines for children's books. Partly because I kept forgetting to take them back, and partly because my toddler loved them so much I didn't want to take them away.

The Park
Then: Scratching "JB + RS = LUV" into a picnic table with a pen.

Now: Frowning at the graffiti on the picnic tables.

The Public Bathroom
Then: Going to the restroom with a group of giggling teenage girlfriends to reapply makeup, fluff hair, and gossip.

Now: Trying not to pee on myself while holding a baby, trying to keep a toddler in the stall, and using every muscle in my body to hover a few inches above the germ infested seat.

The Bedroom
Then: Trying out kinky new moves, staying up all night talking and laughing.

Now: Collapsing into bed exhausted, staying up all night feeding and rocking, forgetting to brush my teeth.

The Night Out
Then: Spending hours perfecting my makeup and hair. Getting dressed in a hot outfit, going dancing, having a few drinks, stumbling in late.

Now: Having the husband watch the kids so I can run to the store in my sweatpants to buy diapers.

My how things change!

Monday, May 28, 2007

How did I get so lucky?

So last night was pretty eventful. I ended up opening up the door to get some fresh air, and catching two men breaking into cars in our parking lot. It ended up being a chase, with my hubby right on the guy's heels, lots of cops, a car chase, jumping fences, tackling, etc. It was pretty intense! The dumbasses got away though. :(

Anyway, I didn't get to bed until 3 AM. And got up at 6 AM with the baby. Then Tony comes into the bedroom and asks me to get the girls ready. His dad wanted to go fishing, so he was taking the girls to the in laws' house so my mother in law and sister in law could watch the girls while the guys fished.

This was so needed, as yesterday I had a major meltdown. I just had SO much anxiety and stress and I was upset with my husband and felt like I was going to pull all of my hair out, strand by strand. I am glad he recognized that I need a break desperately! They are going to be gone all day, so I am settling in for a day of NOTHING. No cleaning or anything, just relaxing, vegging out, taking a long nap and loooong hot bath. Aren't you jealous? :) If you want a break too, all you have to do is go crazy and stare at him with that desperate, bugged out, whacked, psycho look. It's easy!

How AWESOME is this?

What a sweet contest! Pinks and Blues hosts the most amazing giveaways! Right now they have an adorable Dooney and Burke handbag, and a bottle of yummy VS perfume that they are giving away. You can check out their website here. The deadline is next Friday, so run over and enter everyone!

I also signed up for their daily emails, called the Lucky Loop. Very cool stuff!

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Thank GOD!

I am so unbelievably glad this week is OVER. What a miserable one!

With the flu, Chloe's fall down the stairs, Ali and I teething (her first ones, my wisdoms), horrible insomnia, it's just been a nightmare.

But hopefully this long weekend will be nice and relaxing, and next week will be much better!

Hope everyone has an enjoyable weekend and super-dee-duper week!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

My Friendly Friday!

So I had a bit of a rough day. I started out so ambitious and thought of all kinds of good things I could do today, but I slacked! So I ended up writing out a few cards to some online Mommy friends and mailing them off.

My Chloe has been cracking me up all day. That girl is helpful in a not so helpful way! Alivia often rolls over onto her tummy, then after a few seconds gets mad, so we have to roll her back over. Now, the second she rolls over, Chloe comes running to flip her over to her back. Sometimes it is in a gentle way, sometimes not.

Then today, we had just walked in the door from running errands, and Ali was halfway asleep in her carseat. So I set her down and left her for a minute to see if she would put herself to sleep. Chloe said "Baby seep!" and I said "Is baby tired?" She walks up to her, sticks her face right next to the almost asleep Ali, and yells "Are tired baby?" Or if Ali cries and I am busy, I'll ask Chloe to bring a toy to the baby. So she'll run up and chuck a stuffed animal at her. :o The rest of the time though, she really loves her sissy and is really gentle with her.

I have a busy few weeks coming up. I am co hosting a baby shower for a close friend, then I have a bachelorette party, then a wedding, then the birth of above friend's baby! I am so so so excited, and crossing my fingers that I'll be able to make it for the birth (she's about two hours away) but since it is her first, it will probably be awhile. I almost miss that feeling of anticipation when I was pregnant with Chloe. Not knowing what was coming, being scared, but also feeling so anxious. Wanting the last few weeks of my pregnancy to speed along, but wanting to stay pregnant forever at the same time! I miss the freedom of pre baby life too. Taking a nap whenever I felt like it, eating ice cream without having to share, wearing clothes not covered in spit up, long showers, throwing a few things in a bag and just going on a trip on a whim, peeing in peace and quiet. I better stop now or else I'll be tempted to sell my kids. I'd probably get a decent price out of 'em though, with the unique hair. Hmm...that's tempting!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Friendly Friday!!!

I am doing something new on Fridays, just for a change of pace and something to write about!

I am going to do at least one good deed every Friday. Something little, or something big, for a stranger, myself, my family, etc. Maybe it will set the tone for the weekend and I'll be a super citizen through the next week. Here are a few ideas I brainstormed...

For the hubs:
-Give him a back/foot rub just to be nice.
-Make him a fabulous dinner, complete with candelight and fancy plates.
-Do that one thing in bed that you never want to do, but would make him SO happy! ;)

For your friends/family
-Send out a card to someone thanking them for being so great
-Send a friend some flowers at work
-Bake something yummy for a neighbor/friend
-cut your neighbor's grass
-If the weather is nice, go out and wash your car, your neighbor's car, your friend's car, etc just for fun
-Offer to babysit a friend's kids for free while she gets a few hours of Mommy time

For your community:
-Donate something to a local Salvation Army/charity
-Volunteer your time
-Take a garbage bag and some gloves and go pick up trash at the park
-Put extra money in the needy jar on the counter at the gas station

For a stranger:
-Give a homeless person an extra buck
-Help an elderly person out to the car with their groceries
-Be an extra polite driver and let people cut in front of you
-Take your kids with you to go visit an elderly home. They love visitors!

For your planet:
-Plant a tree
-Go buy some cloth grocery bags
-Go through your house and recycle as much as possible
-Ride your bike somewhere instead of drive
-Switch to organic produce

That's just the tip of the iceberg. There are so many things you can do to be a good citizen, helpful friend, or loving family member. So do something good for someone today! And post about it on your blog if you want. I bet you will feel all warm and fuzzy like inside! I'll post later today about my good deed. It still feels like Thursday, so I probably need to go to bed first!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

My poor icky sissy!

I know, I know, my third post today! I just have a lot to say I guess!

I used to call my sister my "icky sissy" when I was little. She's 5 1/2 years older than me. As kids we weren't all *that* close, but mostly because there was such an age gap. As adults though, we are tighter than lug nuts.

So, to say she is accident prone is quite the understatement. She is constantly stubbing her pinky toe on her right foot. As a family, we tend to be over-exaggeraters, so she is always calling me telling me she broke her toe, when in fact it is more like a small, albeit painful, stub.

So tonight I get a frantic phone call from her, she is practically hysterical and yells into the phone to meet her at the ER to pick up the kids. I throw on some clothes (I wasn't nakey, but I didn't want to be seen in public sporting spit up covered sweat pants), and race to the hospital. It's only a few blocks away luckily. I get to the waiting room to find my sister checking in. She is sitting in a wheelchair, in horrible pain, and one look at her toe makes me retch. Her pinky toe was completely horizontal, perpendicular to her other toes. *gag* I take her kids (3 and 6) and take them back home to hang out.

When she came to pick them up, she was nice and happy from all the mind numbing drugs. They had to stick a needle and do all kinds of unmentionable things to her toe to get it to go straight, so they had to really drug her up. I'm sure she'll be feeling it in the morning though, poor girl. :( She's in a walking cast now, which is not so good for her waitressing job.

As a kid, I was the one who was so accident prone. I ran into a tree on our fifth grade skiing field trip and had to be ambulanced to the hospital. On my 8th grade field trip, we went rock climbing. It was a hot afternoon, and after climbing all day we were exhausted. I plopped down on the ground to listen to the park ranger give a lecture and sat right in the middle of a cactus. I had to have my friend pull cactus needles out of my rear, then we ran off to climb up a tall rock. I got to the top of the rock and stood up, got really dizzy headed and passed out. I fell a few feet and hit my head. I had to be lifeflighted off of the summit. Shortly after that, I was voted Most Likely To Wreck the Driver's Ed Car. Which I did a few months later.

But since then I've only had a few minor bumps. I must have passed it on to my sister, the poor girl!

Betty and Duncan

I just had this conversation with my two year old.

C: (picking at bandaid on her banged up knee) Mom, hepp (help)!
M: Do you want Mom to take off your bandaid?
C: Yeah, hepp.
M: (reaching towards her knee)
C: NOOOOOO! No hepp!
M: Ok, you do it.
C: Hepp Mom!

And she's also learning that Mama's version of sharing is a bit different than hers. I made homemade cinnamon swirl cupcakes, with a white chocolate almond frosting yesterday. It was so much work, but they turned out delicious. Of course, when I say homemade, I mean I made them at home out of a box and a can, but it's nearly the same thing, right?

So after breakfast C-Lo was already asking for a "cuppy cike". So I complied and said that we could share one. I tore off a miniscule chunk for her, and was about to pop the other 3/4 of the sweet yumminess in my mouth when Chloe pointed to mine and yelled "NO! Dats mine!" I showed her the piece I had torn off for her and explained that it was hers and she was sharing with Mommy. The little smarty pants refused to give up until I gave her my bigger piece. So I ate the small piece and gave her the big one. Of course, when she turned her back, I ripped the paper off of another one and shoved it in my mouth quickly. By the time she turned around to see what the paper crinkling was all about, the cuppy cike was gone. I tried to chew quickly and not spew crumbs at her as she stared at me suspiciously. In my haste, I didn't get all of the paper cup off of the cupcake, so I got an extra dose of fiber today. I couldn't pull it out of my mouth, I knew she'd bust me!

A fun contest!

Check out this fun contest from Adventures in Babywearing. And thanks to Megan for directing me there! I've just spent way too much time perusing the Mason & Matisse website. I can't believe all the amazing stuff they have! Of course I always love me some Babylegs and this positively adorable froggie bath pod and these Dado cubes would be great for the monster!

The contest looks so fun, you can win a ton of shibby things! I will be so excited if I win, I never win anything! Wait, strike that. I won a two year supply of poopy diapers recently. What a find!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

I did it!

One tiny tiptoe for me, one giant leap for the planet!!!

I bought cloth grocery bags today! I always reuse my plastic grocery bags, but they have been accumulating for years and the space underneath my sink is overflowing with Earth-destroying plastic. My new bags are nice and sturdy with long handles, they were crazy cheap and I am giddy with excitement!!! They will come in handy when I am leaving the library as well. Juggling a giant stack of books and two children is no easy feat!

In other news, it is nearly 3 AM and I am wiiiiiide awake. I've tried EVERYTHING for my insomnia in the past month, but I just can't kick it. I've tried sitting in a dark room doing absolutely nothing. I've tried laying down. I've tried a long relaxing bath. I've tried exercise to tire myself out. Reading a boring book, the list goes on and on.

I just got done going through my finances and paying bills. The stack of mail is sitting by the door ready to go. Writing out checks makes me feel so grown up! And poor. :(

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

It's gonna be a long day!

Chloe woke up this morning saying "Yip, hurt! Oww" Her poor lip looks awful.

And we had Ali's four month check up this morning. She is doing fantastic, but she had three shots. So I have a cranky baby, hurt toddler, and I still have this bug. My wisdom teeth are getting worse too, the pain is radiating up through my face, and my ears and cheeks hurt now. Not to mention the raging headache, nausea, dizziness, and achy tummy.

Sigh. Who takes care of the Mama when she is sick?

In happier news, my daughter has been cracking me up lately. Today I asked her if she wanted a PB&J and she said "G-G-and G? OK!" Or she grabs unopened cans and boxes of food from a low cupboard, puts them in her little purse and says "Go store? Need juice? K, be back" Then she'll go the bedroom and walk back out and hand me a can of corn and say "Here juice. Say takes (thanks)!" She also clops around in her play high heels (she walks better in heels than I do!) thirty necklaces, sparkly purses, and clip on earrings. She likes to wear her tutu as well, and say "I princess!" Although princess sounds like "Pcheshesh" Her speech is still coming along, and every day she'll repeat something new, or string more words together. She still doesn't talk as much as other two year olds though.

Ali is asleep now, Chloe is eating her GG&G, and I am getting ready to collapse on the couch. Not to fall asleep, but just to wallow in my misery. I'm sure it's going to be one of those days where Chloe watches too many cartoons, but I don't feel that guilty.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very MISERABLE Day!

Yeah, today goes down in history as being the worst day, like, EVER!

First off, I have an ingrown toenail. Normally I wouldn't feel comfortable sharing that disgusting detail with my thousands of readers, but I feel it's necessary. Yeah, that mofo is painful. And I am still nursing my stubbed toe from yesterday. My stumps are throbbing.

And my wisdom teeth are making their presence known. I haven't had a problem with them for four years, and all of a sudden I am in major pain. Oh..and FYI...Baby Orajel doesn't do much for wisdom teeth pain.

So I didn't even attempt to lay down until 4 AM last night because I knew I'd toss and turn all evening. I got about 4 hours of sleep.

And then I wake up this morning with a horrible flu bug. I've spent the entire day stumbling between the couch and the bathroom. Hubby let me squeeze in a nap earlier, but I still felt like I'd been run over by a Mack truck.

Then hubby had to go to sleep before he had to leave for work. I had to run to the store as we ahem...ran out of toilet paper. And I felt the need to chug some Pepto. So I bundled the girls up because Idaho is confused and thinks it is WINTER and it is freezing cold out. I was holding Alivia's carseat, diaper bag, and my purse. Chloe was walking down our ten wooden steps right in front of me. All of a sudden she trips and falls head first down the flight of stairs, head over heels, bumping into each hard stair, then slamming into the concrete at the bottom. My heart literally stopped. I set Ali down and ran down the stairs, scared to death because she was laying there at the bottom of the stairs not moving and I don't even want to type what ran through my head at that moment.

I picked her up, she had the wind knocked out of her, but then she caught her breath and started screaming. Her face had blood all over it. :(

So I run Chloe inside, set her on a kitchen chair then run back out to bring Alivia in. I wet down a washcloth and started wiping off blood, as I wasn't sure where it was coming from. Her nose was bleeding a little, but her mouth was bleeding a LOT. Once I was able to clean her up and calm her down a bit, I pulled her lip down. She must have bitten down hard, she had teeth marks and the inside of her lip is terribly cut up. She has a few other bumps and bruises. Her eyes are such a dark shade of brown, that I couldn't tell if her pupils were dilated at all.

I would have taken her to the ER, but once I got her cleaned up and calmed down, she was acting fine. So I settled her on the couch with her blankies and a popsicle and Happy Feet. I watched her closely the rest of the evening, and she seemed completely normal. I had called our nurse's emergency line and she said if Chloe threw up, acted dizzy, or was lethargic, we should go in.

I feel so sorry for the poor girl. Her lip is SO swollen and huge, I told Tony that she looks like Bubba off of Forrest Gump. I have my alarm set for every hour so I can check on her. I am still sick to my stomach with this stupid flu though. I just took a long hot bath and I am sitting here in my towel because I feel too weak to even get dressed!

So, now that you guys all know WAY too many gross details about my horrid day, I'll leave you with this piece of golden advice.

Stock up on toilet paper. You can never have too much.

Watch your mouth!

Chloe took a long bubble bath tonight. After draining the water and helping her climb out, I started to grab a towel to dry her off, but she took off running. She started running through the house yelling "I nakey! I nakey!" I finally caught up to her and laughed because she had bubbles all over her hiney. I swiped at her with the towel and told her she had bubbles on her butt.

So of course all evening I kept hearing "Mama, you a bubble butt!" Giggle, giggle.

Sigh. Yes, I know dear. My bubbles aren't quite as cute as yours though sweetie!

So, that was the cute thing she repeated. The not so cute thing...that was my fault again.

The four of us were laying on the bed. Chloe was blowing raspberries on Alivia's tummy and they were laughing. I got up to go get a burp cloth and stubbed my toe HARD on the dresser. I couldn't help it, I yelled out "Son of a monkey's ass!" while hopping up and down holding my poor toe.

I have to bite my lip to keep from laughing now when Chloe hops around and says "Uh oh mokey's ass!" *blush* I really need to watch it!

Sunday, May 20, 2007

A chish!

Chloe caught her first fish today. We went to a stream that is in walking distance to our house. I strapped Alivia into our beautiful Mei Tei, and Tony and Chloe walked along in front of me. She was hurrying along in excitement, holding on to his hand, and he had his pole slung over his shoulder. Put that image in black and white, and you have a Hallmark card for sure! Seeing those two together made me so happy my heart physically hurt.

Down by the stream, Tony knelt down, and Chloe stood in front of him. They held the pole together, with his large, callused hand over her tiny, smooth one. She was yelling at the stream "Come on chish! Where are you???" I stood back and rubbed the little red peach fuzz on the top of Ali's head and watched them fish. Within minutes Tony yelled out and I heard Chloe yelling in excitement. Tony guided her hand in reeling in the line. Then a small squirming fish popped out of the water on the end of the line. It's very appropriate that it was a teeny baby fish. Tony held it, pulled the hook out of it's mouth and let Chloe touch it. She laughed and said "Ewww iss goss!" Then we all said bye to the fish and Chloe helped throw it back in the water. She was a little sad that she didn't get to keep her new little friend. We talked about the fish needing to go back to it's mommy and play in the water.

Back at home that evening, Chloe couldn't stop talking about her 'chish'. She was so proud! I asked her where the chish was and she said "Chish went home! Chish need mommy and daddy!"

It was so very sweet. I know sometimes Tony feels sad that he doesn't have his little boy to teach. But being able to play wrestle with Chloe, and help her reel in a fish, or teach her to swing a bat, that makes it all okay. It's the moments when he is laughing and high fiving a two year old over her catch of the day that make both of their eyes shine. I've always thought the most influential person in a girl's life is her Daddy. She will learn so many valuable lessons from him, way more important than her ABCs, manners, or following directions. Or going to bed on time, or eating her veggies, or using her inside voice. Or not poking her sister in the eyes, or dumping the bath water on the floor, or writing on the walls. Way more important than that!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Mosquitoes, Lawn Mowers, and Whip-Its, Oh My!

Tonight we went to my parent's house to celebrate Mother's Day. I really love my parents, and I especially love that they have been married for 27 years. It seems like that is almost hard to find these days. Of course, they are constantly criticizing each other or snapping each other's heads off (Not THAT serving dish, jeez! Do you REALLY have to cook the chicken first????? Etc, etc, etc). It gets annoying, but two minutes later they are laughing and have forgotten all about it.

It was a perfect evening, warm enough that we could hang out outdoors, but not hot enough to be uncomfortable. My dad worked the grill, my nephew rode his miniature four wheeler all over the yard and orchard, and my 3 year old niece and Chloe rode around in their pink power wheels jeep. My mom, sister, brother in law, Tony, and I relaxed in the lounge chairs, drinking Coronas with lime, and snacking on fresh pineapple. The kids took turns cruising on the riding lawn mower with grandma.

While everyone was occupied outside, my sister and I snuck inside to prepare strawberry shortcake desserts for everyone. But not before doing a few Whip Its with the can of whip cream. If you aren't familiar with whip its, it is basically sucking the aerosol out of the can, sending it straight to your brain and giving you a nice fuzzy feeling. The glorious high lasts for 2.3 seconds, and probably depletes a hundred brain cells each time. Who needs those silly brain cells anyway!
We felt so naughty and put the whip cream back in the fridge and quietly snuck back outside giggling to ourselves. be 13 again!

The sun started to set and the mosquitoes came calling. After a major West Nile scare last year (Idaho had the highest number of West Nile deaths in the US), we weren't taking any chances, and we headed inside. But not before the nasty buggers had their feast. I am currently scratching at about 8 skeeto bites. :(

We stayed quite a while, playing an entertaining geography game (How many states in the US? What, 52? WRONG! Chug, chug, chug!) I was the designated globe holder and my mom, sister and brother in law had fun yelling out incorrect answers and making each other drink. It was the most G rated drinking game I've ever played!!!! I must also mention my mom rarely imbibes. And if she does it is the occasional glass of vino. So it was fun to see her kick back and get a teensy bit snockered.

But now we are back home and I am ACHING. My back is positively killing me. I did have to drive almost two hours, and sitting in the same position like that just makes me miserable. I am about to run off to bed and cuddle up to my beautiful snuggle bunny. Speaking of bed...Chloe is now in a big girl bed, and doing wonderfully!!! She goes straight to sleep as soon as she gets tucked in. It's glorious!

Weird with a capital P

My dear amiga Corey has tagged me. I now must bestow upon you seven weird things about me.

1. I have a fear of spiders. Not just an, "eww creepy!" fear. A hyperventalating, panicky, blood runs cold, sheer terror, heart stopping, throat closing up, fear. I can't even kill them, I'm afraid to get close. In the pre-arachnaphobia (that word alone gives me chill bumps) days, I could just swat them with a flimsy flip flop, or *shudder* squish them with a bunched up tissue and flush 'em away. Now I can't even look at the creepy crawler for fear it will turn it's multiple beady eyes on me and take a flying leap toward me. I can't look at pictures of the small monsters, if I see them on TV, I have to slink low in my seat and cover my eyes with my hands like a child. The weirdest fear extends to all crawlies. Even ants and roly poly's. All insects creep me the hell out! Or creep the hell out of me. Or creep me out of hell...something like that. Just writing this post has made my skin crawl.

2. I hate pickles with a passion. My dad used to drink pickle juice out of the jar. I can't even stand the smell, it is bile inducing. I remember going to the movies with a friend who was about to have her baby. She was about to pop any day, and her cravings were at the intense grape-jelly-and-sardine-sandwich-NOW stage. I was eager to get into the theater and grab some good seats, but she wanted to stop at the concession stand. I nearly balked until I noticed she was salivating and looking a bit like a deranged wild animal. She asked the young teen behind the counter for one of those giant, rather vulgar looking, pimply pickles. I started to complain, but one look at her puffed up face, cankles, and that insane end of pregnancy glint in her eyes made me bite my tongue. Throughout the movie, I was trying to supress my gag reflux and bury my face in the giant bucket o' popcorn to fill my nostrils with the smell of artificial butter rather than the scent oozing off of her pickle. The sight of the pickle juice running down her chin and her glazed over giant-pickle-orgasm eyes made my stomach roll. Yeah, I hate pickles.

3. I rub my feet together to fall asleep. I'm sure this is a common practice. But I suffer from insomnia, and often spend hours upon long endless hours laying in bed trying to shut my brain off. As a result of grinding my feet together in the same spot for several hours each night for multiple years, I have whittled myself from a size 9 shoe to a size 7.

4. I ate my first steak at age 19. My father was a hunter and oft cooked up a tantalizing, sizzling, tender strip of delicious....wait, is that deer??? The thought of consuming Bambi's cousin with a side of A1 just seemed so wrong. Then when it came time to eat real steak, I just couldn't do it. After getting married and becoming great with child, I went out to dinner with my husband. I perused the menu for about 13 minutes, each time the server came by to see if we were ready to order yet, I snapped at him. The bright picture of the steak on the menu looked pretty delicious, and my iron was low, so I figured, why not? I ordered the steak (extremely well done, mind you) and when it came I stared at it for a moment. I poked it with my steak knife, almost expecting it to jump up and scramble across the table, mooing in a panicked state and knocking over my water glass before jumping to the floor to make an escape. I gingerly cut a teensy corner piece off, examined it for any pinkness, traces of blood or eyeballs, or vessels of *gag* blubber running through it. I nibbled a miniscule bite off of the corner of the piece and immediately sank into my chair. An involuntary groan came out of my mouth and I started cutting furiously at the slab of meat and shoving it in my mouth faster than I could chew. My husband just stared, his fork and knife in mid air. He knew better than to say anything to the hormonal pregnant lady, but I was starting to elicit stares and whispers. The other patrons were staring at me with open mouths. But I didn't care. I was in the middle of a meat induced coma and nothing mattered but the juiciness that is animal flesh. Thus my love affair with steak began. Like a crack junkie, I'll always be chasing after that first high, that moment when I first sank my teeth into meaty perfection.

5. I like cleaning the bathroom. It is such a small room, and I can get it done so quickly. Then it is nice and shiny and clean. I can never get the living room or kitchen to gleam like that, and it always takes forever to clean those rooms. Plus I get a great sense of joy in providing my family with a spic n' span toilet to rest their hineys upon.

6. This is hard! Seven things, really? Oooh, I know one. I love the smell of skunk. I do! Not stale skunk that has been run over a multitude of times and needs scraped off the highway. But a live one, who has just sprayed his munky scent upon an innocent victim. I love it! Everyone else holds their nose and complains loudly, but I take in deep sniffs of the odor! I also love the smell of gasoline, especially diesel, spray paint, and rubber cement. Yeah, I was the weird kid in kindy garten who was sniffing the paste (well, and eating it too. You know you tried it!!!).

7. I can do complicated math problems in my head, including long division. I hear a song once, and I can memorize the majority of the lyrics, I retain tons of useless random trivia, and I am fairly smart. But I get left and right mixed up all the time, I have a hard time following simple written directions, and I have to drive the same route at least 20 times before I remember it. I can hardly hold a map the right way, and when it comes to technology, I'm completely lost. When Tony is telling me how something works I lose him around "Ok, this is how..." I just kind of zone out and mindlessly nod as he speaks what sounds like Swahili. I just don't get it.

Ok, now here is the part where I tag seven other people and hear about how crazy they are, right? Well, the majority of my blogging buddies have friends lists that are nearly identical to mine, so we could go in circles forever! Instead I'll make up something new, since I'm cool like that and all!

So I want to hear about ten things that make you feel warm and fuzzy inside from....(drumroll please).....


Then of course you pick five more people to hear from after you post!

This sums up the post that reveals I have stayed up way too late exposing my oddities to you all!

Monday, May 7, 2007

Sweet, sweet summer

Today was a flurry of activity. I was on the move all day long, and got a ton accomplished. I am paying for it now with an aching back. It is so terrible I had to take a pain pill and I can still barely move. :(

Around 7:30 Chloe was getting restless, so we went outside to play. It was such a beautiful evening. I strapped Alivia into my favorite carrier, a Hideabug Skytai Mei Tai. Check them out here..... . These ladies are SO talented, they do amazing work. I absolutely love my carrier, it gets used at least once a day. It is a total lifesaver when I am shopping. If I don't have the mei tai, I have to take the whole car seat in and put it in the back of the cart, Chloe goes in the front of the cart, and where the heck do all the groceries go??? It is so convenient, and Alivia always snuggles up to me and falls right asleep.

Anyway, I strapped Ali into the carrier and we watched Chloe ride her trike. We talked to the horses that are in a corral by our apartment. Chloe wanted me to lift her up so she could touch the "Poke E Tree". It was the most beautiful evening. The temperature was perfect, we had on a light jacket for those slight breezes, but we probably didn't need it. The sun was sinking low in the sky, and casting a gorgeous light over everything. We went on a walk down the street, just for something to do. My girl is so well behaved. She listens so well. She held my hand the entire time, and if I let her walk ahead of me, she never got more than one or two steps away. And if I asked her to stop, she obeyed right away.

As we walked I was amazed at the sensory overload. Several of our neighbors had recently cut their grass, and the sweet tangy smell of the freshly mowed lawn permeated the air. One of our neighbors was having a barbecue, and the smell of the charcoal and smoke was tantalizing. The glasses of their guests clinked, and their laughter filled the air. A few streets over, several dogs were barking at each other. A group of kids were chasing each other with their brightly colored bikes and laughing. Two preschool aged girls were drawing on the sidewalk with flourescent chalk as their mothers watched on. An elderly couple lazily rocked on a porch swing, with glasses of ice cold sweet tea. A girl squealed as her brother chased her and squirted her with a water gun. A woman headed towards us, holding the leashes of two large dogs. The dogs sniffed Chloe and she tightened her grip on my hand in nervousness. The woman laughed and knelt down, giving Chloe the okay to pet the dogs. Chloe giggled as the dog's rough tongue tickled the palm of her tiny hand.

It does sound a bit Leave it to Beaver-ish. Our neighborhood isn't always so perfect, although it is generally a pretty safe place.

We stayed outside and played until nearly 9:30. It was past Chloe's bedtime, but the amazing weather, beautiful sunset, and summery atmosphere lightened my mood. It reminded me of my school aged years. Riding my bike with my friends, and racing inside at the very last second before my curfew was up. Getting up at the crack of dawn on Saturdays to go play. Swimming in the canals (which now make me shudder in disgust!) with my friends. Befriending the new neighbors and going on summer evening adventures. Exploring an abandoned barn and saving up our own money to build a tree house with our own hands. Sleeping underneath the stars on the trampoline with a group of my giggly, boy-crazed friends. The countdown to the end of school, and the beginning of three months of fun. The anticipation of a summer vacation. Stealing a cigarette and hiding in an alfafa field to take my first drag (fire hazard much?) with my best friend. To this day the smell of alfafa reminds me of my first cigarette (I never inhaled, I promise!). I was a book nerd, and I would climb into one of our orchard trees with a pillow, perch in the branches, and lose myself in the pages of a book. As I got older, summer nights meant outdoor parties. Camping trips, bonfires, hikes, sneaking out, late parties. Skinny dipping, cruising, the county fair, laying on my back in the grass and staring at the stars, wondering what was out there.

It's so amazing how the smells and sounds of summer can bring back so many memories. I had some of the best times of my life during the summer season. It's only May, and our Idaho weather is so unpredictable, tomorrow may be gray and stormy. But tonight I got a little sneak peek of the sweet, sweet summer nights ahead.

If I hit the big one...

The big lottery, of course. The big payout. The massive buckaroonies, the cool millions. I suffer from major insomnia, and often when I am trying to sleep, I lay in bed and think about rolling in the dough. Instead of counting sheep, I become a designer. I close my eyes and picture a gigantic mansion with gleaming hardwood floors and huge bay windows and french doors. Then I go through each room and fill it with imaginary furnishings, beautiful wall hangings, luxurious rugs, and walk in closets full of designer shoes and handbags.

I don't look over any details, and I usually fall asleep in the middle of furnishing the den. Sometimes I make it usptairs to the bedrooms if it is a particularly rough night.

I know it sounds silly. But it works for me. And I am able to erase all the distractions and stresses out of my mind and focus on one thing.

Anyhoo, I love to fantasize about hitting the big payout. I recently watched a documentary on previous lottery winners who spent their way through their money in record speed. Most ended up with foreclosed homes, drug addictions, and animosity among family members.

But that would never happen to me! Upon collecting my check, I'd immediately set the vast majority of it aside. I'd get a trusted team of financial advisors and invest my money wisely. Put aside a large amount for my kiddos, money they won't be able to touch until graduating college, or at age 27. I'd also put aside money for my niece and nephew.

Move the hell out of this tiny apartment, get a beautiful house and furnish it just like I've imagined hundreds of times. Get a great car, a big beefy gas guzzling truck for Tony. Get some lipo, go on a shopping spree, buy some fun toys for the family. I'm sure I'd spend a good chunk, finally having a bit of fun. But then I'd stay here in small town Idaho, shop at Target, stalk the dollar store, and buy 2 for $5 flip flops at Old Navy. We'd have some great family vacations, and I'd finally be able to relax and enjoy staying at home without worrying about finances.

But more importantly...I think I'd have more kids. Yeah, my pregnancies suck, big time. But I just love my kids. And the main reason we aren't having more is financial. Children are God's great gifts, so miraculous and full of life. Kids keep us young! If for some reason I wasn't able to have more, or if the physical problems got worse, I'd either adopt or become a foster parent. There are so many kids out there who need a loving home, even if only briefly. I'd love to open my arms and doors to other children to show them love and affection. It would be hard to be a foster parent though, I get so emotionally attached, I'd have the hardest time letting go when the time came.

I love thinking about hitting it big. But I have to remember to keep myself grounded, and realistic. Odds ain't gonna happen! But I still buy that one dollar ticket every Wednesday and Saturday. It's only 2 bucks a week. Eight dollars a month, $104 dollars a year. And if it takes me 10 years to win, I'll only have spent a grand on little pieces of paper!

Come on baby! Make me a winnah! Mama needs shoes, baby needs diapers!

What would you do with your millions?

Sunday, May 6, 2007


Man, today is a boring day. The hubby is out getting his fish on, Alivia is sleeping on my bed, Chloe is next to me watching the Berenstain Bears, and I am bored to tears. There is plenty to do of course, I need to get rid of half of Chloe's toys that she doesn't play with. I have an entire house to clean, and a laundry pile to work through. But I'm just having one of those days where I don't want to do anything but lay around.

Sigh. I need to get off my rear though and stop eating Pirate's Booty. That stuff is fantastic, but so addictive!

Friday, May 4, 2007

Bye Trash Boy! and other random musings

I was surfing the internet, looking through blogs. It's fun to look at someone's blog, then click on a linkie to one of their friend's blogs, then randomly click five or six more times until you get to an interesting looking one. It's like the six degrees of seperation (spelling?) only weirder.

I have come to the realization that there are some CRAZY ASS PEOPLE out there!

As I was perusing, Chloe yells "Bye Trash Boy!" Proper pronunciation would be closer to "Bye Chash bo-ee!" I had no idea what she was talking about until I saw she was watching Sesame Street, and Oscar the Grouch had just shut himself inside his garbage can. My little stinker is so smart! She also calls Play Dough "Squishies!" My other favorite words of hers are...

Pockels (popsicles)
Paw-kern (pop corn)
Chockit (chocolate)
Melmo (elmo)
Wain (rain)
Chish (fish)
Eh-tant (Elephant)
Bobber (water)
Jaf (giraffe)
Mo-mote (remote)
Kucker (sucker)
Keam (ice cream)
Gog (dog)

That's just a few. I love that half the time she says something people stare at her like she is speaking Swahili, but Mama knows just what she is saying!

Also, whenever you ask where something went she always says "Went home!" Even for the pee going down the toilet. :) Or if you ask where something is it is always "hidin!"

This girl keeps me laughing all day long. Half the time I am snorting coke all over the place. That would be DIET coke, and it is spewing OUT of my nose, not in! :) Speaking of Diet Coke, I'm loving the new Diet Coke Plus with vitamins and minerals. Tastes just like normal DC. Plus now I can justify my diet soda addictions since it is now perfectly healthy. *roll eyes*

In other news, I have a baby dinosaur in my house and she is shaking the walls with her ear splitting shreaks and squeals and yells and screams. She is SOOO noisy! But happy noisy.

In other randomness, can I just say that I am infatuated with the dollar store? Tony doesn't understand the fascination, it's all junk to him. But it's really the only place that I can go on a massive shopping spree and not damage the checkbook too badly. Plus I love our dollar store's gift section. You can buy gift bags, tissue paper, wrapping paper for, like, only a buck! :) It's genius!

And I usually stock up on a bunch of toys and books and flash cards and art supplies to store as bribery and gifts for Chloe. She doesn't know the difference between Crayola crayons, and the cheapie brand. They all write on the wall equally well!

The dollar store also had a ton of summer stuff out. So I stocked up on sidewalk chalk, frisbees, balls, bubbles galore, water guns, and even a hula hoop!

I had a heaping cart full, and it only costed me forty buckaroonies! Try that at Target!


Anyone catch CSI tonight?

I am a proud CSI geek! I've seen every episode, I swear! I thought Grissom was the miniature killer, and tonight's episode totally confirmed that!

And all of the spoilers say that Sara is going to get killed off in the season finale on the 17th. How can it be?????

This show just keeps me guessing all the time. I love love love it!

Man, my insomnia is out of control lately. Even though I had NO sleep last night, 1 AM is creeping up very quickly and I am wide awake!

Off to go lay in bed and stare at the ceiling for a few hours..........................Night!

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

A big scare today!

I was busy making Alivia a bottle and getting her a clean diaper. I turned around to find Chloe sitting on the kitchen floor with the bottle of 400 count Flinstone vitamins, and a full mouth. I had to pry open her mouth and sweep the vitamins out (she had at least 10 in there) without choking her! She was putting up a huge fuss too.

So as I am counting the vitamins in the bottle, I call poison control. Since the vitamins don't have added iron, there wasn't too much of a danger, unless she ate more than a hundred, according to the poison control specialist. Fortunately only 60 were gone, and I guessed we'd used about 30 before. So she probably ate about 20-30.

I have no idea why she did that. Or how she got the child proof cap off. She knows they are vitamins (she calls them bite-uns) and that she only gets one a day.

This is actually our fifth call into poison control. Last time she ate dishwasher soap. Yum!

So make sure ALL of your pill bottles are WAAAY up out of reach, locked up if you can. The little stinkers are surprising with how quick they can climb and pop off child proof tops.

And I think we should all write letters to vitamin companies persuading them to flavor their vitamins like spinach and stop making them look like candy! Maybe they wouldn't be so appealing to little hands!

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Two year old play

I get such joy watching my toddler play. She is amazing in that she will entertain herself for HOURS without any adult prompting. I used to work with toddlers in a daycare, and it was rare that they would be content to play on their own for long periods of time.

The first two years of her life, her words were few and far between. She is starting to talk a lot more, but she really only talks when she is at home. She rarely talks in front of family members or strangers.

I love watching her when she doesn't know I am watching. I know I am a bit partial, but I think she is the most imaginative two year old in the world! She is so creative and funny!

The other day Chloe was in my bedroom and I snuck up to the door and was watching her. She was looking at herself in the full length mirror and this was her exact conversation..

"Hi me!"
"Bye me!"
(then she moved to the side so she couldn't see herself)
"Hey me, where doe?"
"Meeee? Are you???"
"Me hidin!"(moving back in front of the mirror)
"Oh hey me, der are!"

I couldn't hold it in anymore, I bursted out laughing so hard! She cracks me up! She also has the little people zoo, and a lot of little people's. The other day she was sitting on the floor with the giraffe and a little people boy. She was making a chomping noise and saying "No, no! No eat me!" "Giraffe (sounds like Jaf) eat boy, oh no! Boy yummy!"

And she likes to read books to herself, but it sounds like complete jibberish! She also has word books, with big pictures of stuff. On the food page she'll point to the apple and say "Dat nana (banana)? Noooooo!" then point to the grapes "Dat nana? Noooooo!" etc. Or on her animal book she points to the monkey and says "Mokey go woof woof? Nooooo! Mokey go meow? Nooooo!" And she cracks up at herself like she just told a joke.

She also entertains herself with the most random things. She'll play for a good twenty minutes with my deodorant, scooting it on the floor and saying "Go twain! Choo choo!" Or she'll set a penny on it and say "Money go ridin!" (which sounds a lot like Muh-wee doe widin!)

Watching her play, and hearing her giggle at herself brings me so much joy. She is so easy to entertain.

It seems like wherever you go, kids are whining about being bored. They have to bring their handheld video games to the doctor's office, because the ten minute wait is too long and painful. DVD players have become standard in new cars. There are hundreds of video games, movies, high tech toys, electronics..the list goes on and on. It seems as if all of these products are hitting the shelves faster than we can scoop them up for a pretty penny. Why are we so fascinated with things that keep US fascinated? Whatever happened with entertaining ourselves?

I remember playing car games when we went on road trips as a child. We would yell out the states from license plates, name things that we saw in alphabetical order, make lists and see if the next person could memorize them. We laughed a lot. We challenged each other mentally. We created memories. We didn't stare mindlessly at a TV screen, or put on headphones and tune each other out for the whole ride.

I also remember playing board games all of the time with my family. My dad was the Monopoly King, until we found out one day he had taped some 500 dollar Monopoly bills under the table and was dipping into the supply each time we played. But we got a great laugh out of that. We played card games, and NOT for money. We didn't spend every evening glued to the boob tube.

I think we need to go back to the basics. Forget about the high tech stuff. Take a big box, label it "Distractions" and throw in our computers, TVs, video games, headphones, cell phones, and movies. (It'd have to be a BIG box!) Sit down with our families and make up funny stories. Make dinner together, eat it together, wash dishes together. Go on hikes, go fishing, go on nature walks, go roller skating. Play hide and seek, blow the dust off of the old board games. Turn off the distracting TV shows and talk to each other. Find out what your seven year old wants to be when they grow up. Ask your little girl what she would do with a hundred dollars. Have your husband tell the kids about his favorite memory as a child.

I sometimes get a mini panic attack over the state of the country. Middle school children are getting pregnant, seven year olds are doing drugs, high schoolers are bringing guns to class. I don't know the exact statistics, but I bet most of those kids come from a home where the love and affection is hard to come by.

(cue cheesy music)

If we go back to the very root of family, being together, getting to know each other, open lines of communication, trust, compassion, helping each other out, and true, real, raw love, the world would be a better place.

I just don't understand why people have kids and don't make changes to their lifestyle. Having a kid changes everything (yeah, I made that up myself!).

(End cheesy music)

Sorry, went off on a tangent there. I'll climb off my soapbox now. The whole point of this post was to say that I supremely enjoy watching my two year old play and entertain herself. And I hope that as she grows up she will still have a passion for creative play, reading, and outdoor activities, rather than TV and computer games. (I say this as I am listening to music on my headphones, typing on the computer, and watching my TIVO'd shows out of the corner of my eye. *blush blush*. But hey, the kids are in bed at least!)

Sunday, April 29, 2007

A Sunday afternoon nap

Today, started off pretty early. I spent the morning brewing coffee, straightening up the kitchen, starting laundry, and playing with the kiddos.

Around 11, I decided to do some decluttering in our monster of a bedroom closet. I brought Ali in the room with me to hang out on the bed while I worked. She was acting pretty tired, so I laid down with her and curled her up against me. This is how she usually falls asleep, but once she is out, I can get up and leave her to rest.

So while she is laying there, falling asleep, I am preoccupied with all the things I need to do. I'm thinking about all of the junk in the closet and what I'm going to do with it, the coffee I've left on the kitchen counter that is growing cold, and the shower I so desperately need. I'm laying there with my mind running a mile a minute waiting for Ali to fall into a deep enough sleep so I can slowly manuever my arm out from underneath her and get to work.

As I listen to her slow even breathing, and feel the tickle of her soft breath on my cheek, I place my hand on her chest and feel the slow beat of her tiny heart. With each steady breath, I feel my body start to relax, and all the tension and stress just melts away. I slowly drift off into a peaceful sleep.

The hubby came in to find us sleeping, covered us with a blanket, turned off the light and shut the door. Soon the sounds of Chloe's laughter and squealing as Daddy played with her filled the house.


I slowly started to wake up from the restful nap. I watched Alivia's peaceful, smooth, innocent face, listened to her sweet little sleep sighs, and thought about my life. At that very moment, that exact second in time, nothing else mattered. I didn't care about the credit card payment that was late, or the car that needed repairs. I wasn't worried about those extra stubborn pounds I can't get rid of, or the savings account that is shockingly small.

All the stresses that seem to take over my life and occupy my thoughts, all of the bills, the money, the arguments, the tension. None of it matters. In five years, I won't even remember it. But my family, my sweet, sweet girls, they'll always be there. I wish I could take a mental snapshot and tuck it away in my heart forever.

We may not have a new mini van, or matching furniture. Some of my clothes may be hand me downs, and my socks might have holes in them. I might not own any name brand clothes, or luxury hand bags. My shoes might cost less than five dollars, or I might not wear shoes at all. My nail polish might be from the dollar store, and we might drink tap water rather than bottled.

But I have my family. And they have me. All of those giant things that make me so stressed out are so small and insignificant. I don't know what the future holds. I don't know what tomorrow holds. But all that matters is this very moment in time.