Wednesday, December 5, 2007

A Whiny Vent About the Weather

So it's wicked cold outside and I'm already tired of it. I really do belong in the tropics or something, this cold is doing something to my brain. I had two great things I wanted to blog about last night, as I was falling asleep, and I cannot remember either topic. Which is irritating. So all I can think to blab about is how frickin' cold it'd think after living most of my life in Chicago I could handle a little chill, but no, not me.
Have I mentioned I hate the cold?
I'll come back when I have something constructive to say.

Halloween pics

I was reminded recently of the fact that I had not yet posted pics from this year's Halloween. Naughty me! I don't actually have any of Monkeybutt - he dressed up and trick-or-treated with a group of friends - but the fairy princess is my Girl Child. Isn't she just magical?

Her friend in law enforcement is our neighbor.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Have a fabulous trick-or-treating time!

(this was from last year, but it was freaking cute. I'll post this year's pics later.)

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Manifesto Reassessment (a long one, kids, settle in for this one.)

Yikes. Do you realize how close we are to the end of the year? This close, and I haven't done squat. Made almost zero changes. How sad is that? I wrote this huge long "manifesto", or list of resolutions this year. And yes, I know, nobody ever keeps to their resolutions, but these are changes I really need to make for my and my family's health and well-being. So why is it so hard to change for the better? Here is what I resolved to do this year:
I will lose weight:
Join Weight Watchers – weigh in every week, follow points system, implement new habit a week.
Exercize every day – begin easy, 20 minutes of cardio, work from there
Drink 8 cups of water every day. No excuses
Veggies and fruits…get more. For me and the family. Find recipes with lots of produce.
Dermatologist – see one. Wear sunscreen – for kids too.
Wash face every day.
Get more sleep – go to bed before midnight.
Floss every day
Vitamins – take them
Do Yoga – 3 times a week. Maybe a class?
Parenting – I will be a better mother and enjoy my children by:
Spend more time with kids
Less on computer
Read to Ani more
Art projects, outings, enjoy the kids
Patience – have it, use it. Take deep breaths.
Spend more time working with kids on school stuff
Writing with Aeron
Alphabet and numbers with Ani
Spanish with both
Schedules and routines
Establish firm bedtime routines and times
Chores and allowances
Work on actually having a routine and schedule.
Establish and actually follow through with effective discipline
Money – need more, spend less.
Work on establishing a budget and spending and saving plan.
Create new ways to bring in money (babysitting, selling jewelry, etc.
Spend less! Figure out what we have and don’t spend more. We would like to take vacations this year, need money to do it.
Lunch or breakfast out – only 2 times a month, not once a week.
Shopping lists – make them, use them. Try to adhere to them.
Organization and Household – make this home a haven, and know where everything is…
Work on routines – I have a perfectly good control journal – start using it.
Establish day to work on paperwork – both Mom’s club and home
Everything else:
Work on 50 things list – try to accomplish some of them
Stop berating myself about education. I don’t like my lack of education so do something about it…read nonfiction book every month, work on Spanish, etc.
Read or watch news every day. I have so little knowledge of current events. Rectify that.
Learn more about gardening, work on that. Compost pile?
Learn to sew, get better at other things I enjoy.
Work on my social skills – not everything is about me.
Be grateful for my life. Remember this in journaling.
Enjoy life.

So, what have I done about it? I joined WW...then quit. I didn't like the meetings, the paying $10 a week, taking my daughter didn't work for me. I then started a weight loss group for moms in my area. We are still working on this taking off. Everything else I've done sporadically...I do take vitamins every day, and I haven't been to see a dermatologist yet...but the rest has been sporadic. I am starting the Best Life Diet on Monday. The first phase of this plan seems to follow pretty closely with what I mapped out here - I'll keep you all posted.

I've been spending time with the kids on school stuff, I've tried to be more effective with discipline, I'm still struggling with routine. I think, though, we are always growing and evolving as I'm not too terribly concerned about my lack of progress here. I think it will always be a section of my resolutions, because how can we be better parents if we are not willing to grow and learn?

Money...yikes. I am struggling with that one. I simply need to stop spending senselessly. There's no reason for it. I have resolved to not use my credit card, except for groceries tomorrow, this whole week. I'll keep you posted on that one, as well. I have been using shopping lists...that's not to say I've been sticking solely to the shopping list...

As far as organization: honestly, I am not a routine-oriented person, and I struggle with this. I just need to suck it up and work a little harder. Maybe start the Flylady stuff from the beginning again. My house isn't scary-dirty or anything, but it needs help. And the big jobs aren't getting tackled because I'm so wrapped up in getting the little ones completed...

As for everything else, here goes: I composed my "50 things" list - it's on this page. I haven't accomplished any of them, but it's written. I have been reading more that I normally wouldn't - including some nonfiction, and some classics. I finally read "To Kill a Mockingbird" this year. That was an amazing book. I also have been paying closer attention to current events, in part thanks to my friend Zen, who is addicted to NPR and seems to keep me posted in one way or another. I even find myself straying to news websites on occasion, just to have something to talk about. I am still dissatisfied with my education, but I have done some small thing to improve my mind, and I intend to continue. This blog is certainly a part of that...putting my thoughts down so someone else may actually be able to follow them is an important exercize. I have yet to learn to sew, my Spanish will get me to the bathroom and eating, and little else, I planted several things this year, and killed about half, but we had some yummy tomatoes, one tiny compost pile yet. I have been working on the social issues...of course the "mememe" tone of this post is no proof of that, but I find myself listening to what I say, and perhaps checking myself, before I start getting louder, or turning a story around to me.

I am sad to read how little I've accomplished this year, but I suppose I should be thankful the year is not over yet. I have some time to maybe tick a few things off the list...and I suppose the important thing to remember here is that I am a work in progress...which is not necessarily a bad thing. And now I am off to bed...before midnight. Kisses.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

First Day of School Pictures

Not so happy to be going back... So thrilled to be going back!
We should have a picture of me here...doing cartwheels.

This is Bug - see how fabulous she looks?

Monday, September 17, 2007

It's that time admission.

I cannot believe how long it's been since I've written here. I've recently become addicted to a mom's chatting-type site and I spend all this time on there...neglecting all my sweet, faithful readers. But today I felt that little niggling urge to write, and a new self-discovery occurred to me whilst in the loo...where all good ideas truly develop.
I have discovered that I take a certain joy wallowing in my own PMS-related funk. As you all know, I am generally a pretty freaking cheerful person. I like to talk, be friendly, play with kids, all that good, sunshiney stuff. But that one week a month, I turn into a sour, angst-filled teenage girl - and I enjoy it. I like acting snotty when my husband says something he didn't mean anything by (you get me, I know you do), I enjoy sighing with exasperation when asked to go get a drink or another apple or what have you. I particularly relish stomping off in anger for no particular reason and going upstairs to hide in my bedroom, or drive off for an hour by myself. Of course, tonight I hid in my bedroom, where it was nice and silent. I was happy, cocooned in my little nest of peace, when my great big jerk of a husband invaded my space and turned on the REDS game. Oh yeah, now that earned a particularly loud exasperated sigh and stomp off. And it was fun.
I have to remind you all, this behavior only lasts a few days. Both children are still fed, clothed, bathed, etc...albeit not with the same happy cheer I generally perform these duties...but they are performed. But darn it, sometimes a girl has to wallow. And wallow I will.

I need to find some chocolate.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

He's a GUY!

I had a crazy mom moment the other day: Monday was the first day of school. The Girl Child and I walk Monkeybutt to the bus stop (he started 5th grade.) Of course, there are more parents at the bus stop than there are's like a party or something, and Monkeybutt is pretty well ignoring me (he does that so well.) Anyway, the bus arrives, the kids start getting on, Monkeybutt barely acknowledges my good-bye yells. Some boy toward the front sticks his hand up in "high-5, guy greeting", MB slaps his hand and continues sauntering to the back seat of the bus, which, as a 5th grader, he now occupies. Tears spring to my eyes in proud mommy emotion; my son, my little now...a GUY. Good bye Hot Wheels and sweet mommy cuddles, hello body odor, crude jokes, and loud rock. Sniff.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

"It's very foolish to laugh if you don't know what's funny in the first place..."

That is a quote from the book Blubber, by Judy Blume. Do you all remember Blubber (maybe I should ask if you all have read Judy Blume.) I was an avid reader as a kid and gobbled each and every Judy Blume book I encountered, but Blubber had a massive impact on me. The summary: An overweight girl named Linda is mercilessly teased by her classmates, particularly the "ringleader" Wendy. (I've never liked the name Wendy because I always associate the name with the character. No offense to the Wendys out there...) She starts calling Linda "Blubber", and forces her into all sorts of indignities. The narrator, Jill, is a willing participant in all of this until she finally decides it's enough and stands up to Wendy. This pisses Wendy off, of course, and she turns her vindictive little attentions on Jill.
Now, because my mind generally takes all sorts of meandering little strolls throughout the day, thinking briefly about this book brought back a memory of a similar (though not quite as horrific) experience I had in the 5th grade.
I was a member of a rather popular group of girls; certainly not the most popular member, but popular by association We were all great friends, had a good time, weren't particularly cruel to anyone, and thoroughly enjoyed the 5th grade. What, you ask, does this have to do with a book about pre-adolescent cruelties? Not so much with the cruelties, but certainly with the fickle quality of pre-teen friendship. I remember specifically, in our science class, that we had to take a survey on nutrition. One of the questions was, "How often do you eat dessert during the week?" In my mind, dessert was the treat you eat after dinner; i.e. birthday cake. So I answered, "0". My little group of friends completely lost it over the obvious dishonesty of my answer; I brought a small Little Debbie in my lunchbox a few times a week. Honestly, I hadn't thought of that...but the damage was done. My friends stopped speaking to me and completely shunned me...for about 2 days. Several times during the course of that year, one or another of the girls would do something completely innocuous, but apparently brutal to the dynamic of the group, and would be shunned for a day or two. Sometimes as much as a week. This would cause great upheaval, and massive loyalty switches. Interestingly enough, by the end of the school year, all friendships were mended, everyone was happy. And then I moved and changed schools and had to form all new friendships. In middle school. The cruelest and ugliest of times.

At any rate...this story holds many morals: 1. Loyalty amongst pre-teen girls is a fickle thing. 2. Kids, particularly girls, can be cruel. 3. Judy Blume is the bomb. 4. Blubber is a great comment on preteen society. 5. My mind wanders often and at length, and I like nothing better than to share it with all of you.

Friday, August 3, 2007


I realized yesterday, while speaking to a dear friend, that I never did update all of my concerned readers on the health of my sweet cat, Bug. She is doing well. More than fine...perfectly healthy. After a few weeks of force feeding and constant attention, she has been eating normally, eliminating...competently..., and interacting with humans and cats the way she should. She is back to my sweet natured, playful and gorgeous Bug. So, yay for her!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

From my inner critic...Movie Reviews!

So in the past three weeks I have gone to see three movies. I've enjoyed each are my thoughts (since you asked...duh...):

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Well done, friends. Inappropriate thoughts about young Daniel aside, the movie was exciting from beginning to end, and interpreted the book quite nicely. Imelda Staunton was delightfully evil as Dolores Umbridge, and Helena Bonham Carter maniacal and fantastic as always as Bellatrix LeStrange. But the standout newcomer to an already flawless cast was young Evanna Lynch as Luna Lovegood. Her portrayal was good-natured and flighty - and inherently kind. She was exactly as her character reads, and I found her to be a highlight in an outstanding film. Both of my kids enjoyed it immensely.

Ahh! Loved it (I am not always this gushy about my films, I've just enjoyed the last few I've attended.) Monkeybutt will attest to the fact that I spent half the movie either gawking at the screen in disbelief or grabbing his arm and whispering loudly, "did you see that? that was so cool!" It is rare that I am this freaky about a movie based mostly on effects, but the effects were unbelievable...just watching the transformers....transform...and the sound effects, and the fight scenes...Definitely Must See Cinema, my friends.

The Simpsons Movie
We had to see this one - my entire family are die hard, watch every Sunday night, Simpsons fans. We love the show, have half the dialogue memorized, and you will notice us pepper many conversations with quotes from the show (my personal favorite being, "it burns like a Glasgow bikini wax", heavy Scottish brogue, as yelled by Groundskeeper Willy during a downpour of acid rain...) This Simpsons fan will admit...probably not worth the price of the ticket. But if you are amused by the Simpsons, you will laugh throughout most of the movie; much as the viewer sitting right in front of us length, and loudly. It was rather amusing, really.

Also, just finished Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. If you have not read it, do it now! Seriously, turn off your freaking computer and read it!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Have you looked at the calendar?

...and seen that summer is over halfway over? I checked my calendar this morning and realized that Monkeybutt is due to leave for camp in less than two weeks (and that the balance of his camp fees were due Saturday...don't worry, taken care of.) He's home for a week, we move Katie into her dorm, and they both start school. That's less than a month away, folks. I guess I'd better fit some serious merry-making into the next few weeks...of course I just got the new Harry Potter book, merry-making will have to wait. Here are some pictures from this far.
And Happy Birthday to my muy fabuloso MOM tomorrow!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Silly silly me...

I'm feeling a bit goofy this evening, and unfortunately not having any luck channeling said goofy-ness into no fascinating blogging will be done this evening.
So, I leave you with this fabulous picture of my mother as a lovely tufted bird. Isn't she gorgeous?
And I encourage you to laugh uproariously at something tomorrow. Laugh so hard it makes your sides hurt and your bladder ache. It will keep you young. Check out the new link I posted, Thanks, my sweet decorative scissors girl, for the link - I nearly peed my pants myself tonight.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Surprise adventures.

Please forgive me for ignoring you all, my adoring masses. It has been quite the two weeks here in chalet Missy. My darling Monkeybutt attended his first sleepaway camp last week (4-H camp) and was NOT happy to leave. He would have happily nature hiked and canoed the rest of the summer away. Even the promise of another week of camp (this time at the highly coveted Camp Ernst - that of the giant water slide and banana boats) did not immediately raise his spirits. He did have some great stories and information to share when he returned, however, including an interesting ghost story, a recipe for something called "puppy chow", and tips for identifying a coral snake. Did you know there are 4 venomous snakes indigenous to Kentucky?
On the 4th, after a rousing bbq with some friends, we attended the local festival. It was small, and not so very interesting to the adult folk with me, but the Girl Child was pretty thrilled. She played some of the free games and danced to the country (shudder) band with several of her little girl friends (one of the lovely aspects of moving here - we actually run into people we know). We sat right by our car and watched the fireworks, which was very cool - they were right over our head. Would have been better had it not started pouring right before the finale - but we had a good time. And we needed the rain, so I can't complain.
This past weekend my aunt (mother's sister) surprised us with a visit. She and a friend drove down from Columbus on Friday. I was cleaning out my car (an attack with crayons, several snack-filled car trips, and a vomiting episode convinced me it was time) and noticed a van driving up and down our cul-de-sac. People get lost here all the time so I thought nothing of it until it stopped in front of our house. I was about to duck for cover (I thought the woman trudging up my lawn was going to try to sell me something), until I realized it was my beloved Aunt MB. They stayed until Monday morning and we spent the weekend chatting, bbq-ing, roasting marshmallows, watching our neighbors set off ridiculously dangerous, but very cool fireworks, playing basketball...and fishing. Yes, my darling studmuffin actually guilted me into waking up early Sunday morning to go fishing. Ok, well, I don't fish...but I brought my chair and prepared to watch the children fish. But they continually needed assistance (darn 4 year-old), and I even had to unravel a snagged line from a tree. There were some highlights, though...
  • The girl child caught her first fish ever. Very exciting.
  • She learned to cast - properly and well. She's very proud.
  • Studmuffin fell in the pond trying to get a hook out of a tree. Tee hee.

GC also kept referring to the fish she caught as "blue jays". They were blue gills, of course. That is obnoxiously funny at 7AM.

My one regret is having (of course) forgotten my camera. It was early!

It was a nice visit and a lovely surprise. The kids fell in love with both of them...our big family reunion is next weekend and both were asking if they'd be there, and are thrilled that they will be. What a wonderful thing for our kids to get to know extended family - beyond the parents and grandparents...It gives them a sense that they come from something big.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

More Aimless Chatter...

I haven't been feeling particularly loquacious lately...but I feel I have been ignoring my masses of adoring readers and should try to drum a little something up...
First...a rant on my insurance company. We all have a little something to say about our insurance companies. And in the scheme of things, I suppose my particular issue is not very important. But the bastards have doubled my co-pay on my allergy medicine - the first allergy medicine I have found in 10 years of searching that keeps me breathing happily - and I had to find another. So I switched to another, which does not work nearly as well, and I am way stuffed up and feeling rather puffy in the face. And I spend the nights waking up to a drippy nose and having to blow. Which...simply...blows. Why, I ask you? Why do they choose to just up and double my copay, without even a warning? I say again, Bastards.
My cat, Bug, is improving swimmingly, my friends. She is eating on her own now, although she will only eat wet cat food now. I try to give her dry and she just looks at me with a rather baleful, "do you really think I'm going back to eating that crap?" expression. So, Fancy Feast it is. Much to the envy of the rest of the felines in the household...I am constantly being eyed by pouty kitties - "why does she get the good stuff?" Poor guys.
My son, Monkeybutt, leaves for his first sleepaway camp this Monday. I am very excited for him, I hope he has a great time. And that he works and plays well with butterfly, he is not.
We have been having some rather nasty financial issues in our old Kentucky home as of late, which as had me evaluating my unfortunate habitual spending and trying to come up with a way to stay home with the kids for two more years. I have developed a massively strict budget - we will be tracking all spending/saving for the next two months to see if we can make a large enough difference - otherwise, it's back to work for me! I'll say it again - anyone need any admin work done from home, let me know. I am a wicked good secretary (you see how I bold this to catch the attention of anyone who happens by this post...) I posed this question recently on another is it that someone so mentally disorganized as myself can keep an office in top shape? I am bizarrely organized when it comes to paperwork.
At any rate, it is time for me to be off...wish me luck with my upcoming challenges. Perhaps I'll start posting goals at the beginning of each week...having them posted may be enough to keep me accountable.
Good night...

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Weekend of Insanity

First off, Buggy seems to be doing better. She stayed over at the vet's for 2 nights where they kept hydrating her and force feeding her. She came home on Friday afternoon, and we have to force feed her every 2-3 hours. REminds me of having a baby. But she seems to be doing better. She looks brighter and is actually purring and playing a bit. Keep the prayers and healthy thoughts coming, but I'm optimistic.
Friday night my MOM'S Club participated in our county's Relay for Life. It was hectic and crazy, but we had a good time. Our team was smaller than it should have been this year (next year we'll have to get started earlier), but we actually raised a decent amount of money for such a small team. I was exhausted by the time I got home - seriously, it was all I could do to brush my teeth.
Yesterday my mom, Katie and I went to Louisville to visit some very good girlfriends for the day. It was a wonderful time - nothing refreshes the spirit like chatting with really good friends. It's amazing how, as I get older, my need for good girlfriends increases. I prided myself on my ability to befriend guys when I was younger - now I crave female companionship (and not in that way, I know how some of you think - not that there's anything wrong with it...) like I crave chocolate and fresh air.
Anyway, today has been lovely and calm, but my studmuffin and I are going out for dinner, so I guess we should discuss locations...have a peaceful Sunday.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Update on Bug

This is Bug and Eddy (Bug is the white and brown in front) in the dryer.

I'm going to start writing these like I have millions of readers hanging on with bated breath for my next installment...

For those of you wondering about my sweet Buggy, I took her to the vet today. She seems to have something called "fatty liver", which is the replacement of regular liver tissue by fatty tissue, caused by her refusal to eat. She was jaundiced and dehydrated, and the only way to reverse the illness is to force feed her. She is staying overnight at the vet being rehydrated and force fed, and then she will be coming home to be force fed by us every 2-3 hours. My poor Monkeybutt was actually in tears at the vet; I felt so bad. Seriously guilty, honestly, I can't believe I let this poor cat get so sick. I just kept hoping we could find some way to make her eat...At any rate, please send healthy thoughts for our sweet cat. I know not everyone thinks of their pets this way, but we are very attached to our cats - it would be a truly horrible thing to lose her.


Sunday, June 10, 2007

Extremely Heedless Ramblings...

We have ants in our house. Annoying little beasts that just keep multiplying the more I kill them. And I do kill them; with gusto. I used to feel guilty about this - enjoying the deaths of multiple living creatures - but I've gotten over the guilt and go after them with the violence and single-mindedness of a hired assassin. And they keep coming back. Tomorrow I will vacuum and scrub all my floors, then seek out their lair with a can of Raid and a mission.
This past week we had company in town. My sweet Texas Toad came to visit with her family, including my fantastically adorable godbaby. We tried to show them the glory that is Kentucky - the rolling green hills, the Ohio River, walking the Purple People Bridge, the world's largest Walmart...we wanted to get them to Big Bone Lick State Park, but alas, we failed. And it is a shame, really. Everyone should be able to say they've visited Big Bone Lick. IN fact, I plan to add to my list of stuff to do before I turn 40: "Take a picture of myself next to every sign in Northern Kentucky that features the word 'lick'." Absolutely. Add the term "bone" and we have a true winner. (And before all you prehistoric biology freaks attack me, yes, I do know the origin of the name of the park, I understand it, but honestly - you cannot combine the words "big", "bone", and "lick" in a name and not expect some flack.) Anyway, we spent a lot of time sitting around talking, playing Skip-Bo (not enough Skip-Bo, actually), eating. Pretty much what we did when we lived near each other. It was quite lovely, really. Made even more lovely by the omission of that Cincinnati bizarreness, Skyline Chili. Everyone says I should make sure my visitors taste that, as it is a special treat only available in this area. I beg to disagree. I believe whoever made up the recipe just kept adding ingredients because it just "didn't taste quite right". And it just kept getting worse. I refuse to eat it, why would I subject my sweet friends, who are only here for a week, to such a frightening concoction? I did, however, treat them to Graeter's. That did indeed go over well.
Speaking of food, my darling girl cat will not eat. My mother moved in with us a year ago, and at first all the cats (she had two, I have three) got along well enough, but then her younger male started antagonizing my oldest male, causing him to exhibit the problems indicative of extreme anxiety in cats (look it up, I am not going to list the voiding issues of cats under pressure). We isolated him for a few months and he did well, but then Mom's cat started antagonizing my girl cat. He would chase her every time she went to eat. We isolated her cat, but my girl cat has not started eating again (this has been going on for 2 months now.) We have visited the vet, but we are not getting answers. Only I could have cats with extreme psychological issues. Apparently they need some antidepressants, too.
I find this evening I am more chatty than usual. If you've made it this far through my rambling narrative, congratulations. I would give you a cookie if I could. It is way late, and I am sleepy.

Good night.

Saturday, May 26, 2007


I'm not feeling particularly wordy today, so I thought I'd come on here and just ramble and see where it takes me. Today was my husband, Studmuffin's birthday. He turned 33. (That's him in the picture here...the chick next to him is my sweet favorite friend...we'll call her Texas Toad. She'll like that) Of course, the happiest part of his birthday is that mine follows...5 days later. I will be 32 this year. Which isn't so bad, I guess. I mean, I now have to say, I'm in my 30's...but I haven't hit mid-thirties yet, right? I still have plenty of time to accomplish something before 40. Last night I was skipping around random blogs and found one that had a list of things the blogger wanted to accomplish by 40. Now, I believe her's was meant to be humorous (and she succeeded, there are some amazingly talented bloggers out there), and I believe she was quite a bit closer to 40 than I am, but I think I shall compose a list of my own. A list of things I truly want to accomplish...and I want some of these to be fun and interesting, as well as the items that simply need to be accomplished...Ok, any creative brain function seems to be waning...I guess that means this entry is complete.
Oh, and of course, my birthday is next Friday. And I really like presents. Lots of them. I tell you all this just in case you're feeling gifty...

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Relay for Life

Many of you already know what this is, and perhaps you are already on a team. I am participating in the Relay for Life in my area this year. It is my second time - we had a fantastic time last year and raised quite a bit of money for the American Cancer Society. If anyone is interested in donating, please visit the following link:

The Relay is on Friday, June 15, and goes all night. If you're in the area, please join us! Otherwise, please wish us luck.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

How to Schedule my Life?

I have lost my diary (calendar, planner, whatever) and, as a result, I am lost. Where to scribble down appointments, playdates, phone numbers, book recommendations, purse is now a jumble of scribbled-upon post-it notes and notebook papers, receipts and napkins. Luckily I have anticipated this very problem and habitually transfer all important dates from my diary to my wall calendar, so I know where I am going...but how will I know where I have been - or how to find my keys and cell phone in the paper jungle that is my purse? My diary is my own personal story...places I've visited, what I've eaten, who I've seen, what my kids have done...the ideas I've had (assuming my brain was working that particular day.) It will probably turn up eventually, but in the meantime I mourn my loss (and no, I can't just pick up another one, this one is special, I pout.)

Saturday, May 12, 2007

To all my special mommy friends...

A very lovely Mother's Day to you all. May you receive masses of spectacular presents (I do love presents), and be shown all the love and appreciation you deserve.

Friday, April 27, 2007


If I was any good at poetry I would write an ode to Mom and Katie right now. In response to my rather self-involved, blah mood this week, Mom gave me her ticket to see "The Lion King" at the Aronoff. Now, before you all think I am so selfish to deprive my mother of this experience, I did length...but she absolutely refused. So Katie and I went to see this incredible performance on Wednesday night. I spent half the night with chills and half fighting off tears as a result of the music, the dancing, the costumes...It was a truly beautiful performance. The woman who played Rafiki was worth every penny - she was amazing. And Scar was delightfully menacing...Zazu was hilarious...A very cool experience. I highly recommend it to anyone who can score tickets. It also reminded me of how much I love the theater...I really do need to make an effort to get out to it more often.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


I can't really put my finger on it, but I am feeling really blah right now. It was a busy day kids were not-so-angelic, I watched the girls today, we had school and library and exercise time, plus a baseball game tonight...lots of running, but I felt like I was just going through the motions...set on automatic mom-bot, or something. It's a weird feeling, and I'll have to snap out of it soon. I don't like it.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


I have a cold. And I'm handling it like a man. Which is silly, generally I'm the tough chick in the house, but I really just want to go to bed and be taken care of.

But I'm a mom and I will muscle through. Annika gave me the cold, but she appears to be "on the mend" which I'm pleased about.

This is a silly and boring post, but I just wanted to share my misery.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

My homies and me...

I do love me some chick time. Last night my mom, sister and I attended an all-night crop with a bunch of girlfriends. I finished a buttload of pages, got some new ideas, and all, but the best part was having chickies to chat with all night. Well, until I went to bed at 3:30AM, anyway.

It's amazing how much my life has changed since we moved here from Chicago. Back there I was one of the youngest moms, I had less money and experience, no career background...I always felt...silly and immature...with the other women I met. I had one really close friend and the wench moved to Texas just as we were getting really close (oh yeah, I'm talking about you, Jody.) I had my family there, of course, but no real girlfriends and I was wicked lonely all the time. I'm not looking for pity, truly; I obviously didn't know how to put myself out there and make those connections.

When we moved here, though, I had no family, no hometown to fall back on. I had to build my connections, I had no choice. So I joined e-mail groups. I found my MOM'S Club. The girls in on of my groups taught me to scrapbook, which led me to more friends. I became very close with my sweetheart neighbor across the street, who has introduced me to some amazing women (the ones I was with yesterday). And now I have these incredible women in my life - people I can lean on and who I can support if they need me. I rarely feel lonely anymore.

Something interesting, though...I notice that I have few guy friends. I mean, I'm friendly with my friends' husbands and all, but this former "guy's girl", the chick with way more male friends than female, has no close male friends, other than one guy from high school, my brother, and my husband. I wonder if this is a natural occurance when one is married, or do we tend to need our girlfriends more as we get older? I don't know, but I really don't miss that male companionship at all. I like men, don't get me wrong, but I don't long for their company like I do for my girlfriends'. Huh.

Ok, this has rambled long enough...I'm just feeling lucky and fulfilled...and very very tired. So to all my homies out there that read this: Thank you. I am lucky just to know you. And I love you all.

Monday, April 9, 2007


Feeling groovy, my friends. The first day back at school and the house is so...quiet. Last week was spring break and we had other kids at our house every day. Now it is just girl child and me and I'm appreciating the silence. Of course summer is coming...but that's still weeks away.

Must go clean...

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Theft and chocolate eggs...

All natural forces are truly working for me when my feminine cycle and the Easter holidays fall at the same time. I have been stuffing myself with chocolate marshmallow eggs - you know, the ones that come in the styrofoam egg container?

When we were kids, my mom would buy one container of these eggs and put just a few in each basket. And each time I would steal my brother's (pictured above) out of his basket. I was actually generally a very nice sister, but I felt drawn to pilfer my brother's marshmallow eggs every year. Two were simply not enough. I couldn't help myself, my inner chocolate marshmallow monster would rear its ugly head. So today, I filled the baskets. I even bought an extra container. And I still stole the eggs out of my brother's basket .

Friday, March 30, 2007

Happy days and an ode to the juicebox...

I didn't want to leave such a negative post at the top of my blog today, now that I am feeling much better. My sweet girlchild is no longer puking, I have someone special on my side helping me out with the snipey chicks, I slept last night...always a good thing...and I'm looking forward to a night with the girls tonight, looking at purty scrapping stuff and hanging out. Good times...

Which leads me to a completely disjointed, but must be shared anecdote: Yesterday afternoon Monkeybutt had book club at 4:30, I had to go pick my mom up from work at 5 then back to book club to get Monkeybutt at 5:30 and on to baseball practice by 6:30, which gave us a short time to stop off and get something for dinner. We chose Arby's, which admittedly was not the healthiest choice, but I thought I was craving it. I was wrong. But, anyway, we ordered our food from the frazzled boy at the register who needed a great deal of help because it was a brand new system. The manager guy came to help him out and everytime he completed a function for the boy he said, "Merry Christmas." It became seriously annoying. When he walked away I asked the boy if he always said that. He said, "Yeah, that and 'good times'." Well the boy had trouble cashing us out and called manager guy back to help; he completed the task, said "Merry Christmas", the boy thanked him and he responded with - oh yeah, you guessed it, "good times." This next comment is completely mean and judgemental but, holy crud, what a dork! But, entertainment for Missy.

My friend Erika sent me a link to a website yesterday called Momfidence! I was thrilled when I followed the link and found it was for a writer named Paula Spencer, who writes my favorite column and only reason I read Woman's Day magazine. She's this mom of 4 kids, she's completely down to earth and all about chilling out and truly enjoying your kids. Obviously they're not always so enjoyable, but I just mean - stop freaking out about parenting and enjoy what you can. They're not kids forever.

To illustrate my point: I recently joined a group of rather "crunchy" women here in my area. They are all about the attachment parenting, diaper-free baby, breast-feed ONLY, etc. Nothing wrong with all of this, my friends who are into these things. But there are so many other things to worry about as our children grow up, a little added sugar on occasion is not going to destroy them. One of the woman, a very nice woman, is fanatical about her daughter's diet. She is not to eat birthday cake, fruit snacks, and especially, the root of all evil...juiceboxes. Her daughter is very aware of these rules, and, apparently, will turn said items down if offered with a, "no thank you. My mother doesn't allow me to have added sugar in my diet." This story got me to thinking how much I adore the juicebox. And I don't buy the 100% juice ones either - I am particularly fond of Capri Suns. When I was a kid, the Capri Sun was a special treat...something to be savored. Now I try to keep them on hand. They have Vitamin C, for goodness sake. And it's fabulous to be able to grab one out and hand it to my kid as we're walking out the door instead of filling a bottle or something. And if said kid wants something to drink and I don't feel like getting up, I can say, "grab a juicebox." I would like to meet the inventor of the juicebox and shake his/her hand and tell them how fabulous they are. A whole box of convenience and fun for $2. What a bargain.

I will post the website I like so much in my links. I would highly recommend, if you are a mom like me and a little less than worried about a little added sugar, a scraped knee, or television, checking Paula Spencer out. She's funny, insightful, and she'll make you feel a little better the next time the mom next to you says, "oh, my son is not allowed to watch "Star Wars" or play with toy swords. Too much violence." Well guess what, honey. Your kid is beating on that other kid with a stick and taught my kid several different swear words even I didn't know.
Children are little heathens - we can only keep watch, give them the occasional Oreo, and hope they don't end up serial killers.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

More vomit...

Ugh. My poor girlchild. She has been spewing since 1AM. I hate these stomach sickies - they just spread and spread. I'm hoping it won't last long - Monkeybutt only threw up once and then felt ick for a few hours after.
And another post on the board I mentioned yesterday has been made that will likely spark off yet another flow of bickering. And yes I am complaining. Because everyone's points have been made and it's time to drop it. Which I said, rather like a strict headmistress. I wonder what will be said in response to that.
Alright, this is just not in the entertaining spirit in which I created this blog, so it's time to move on. The Backyardigans are distracting me, anyway.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Responsibility Sucks

With each passing moment of my life I find being an adult more and more irritating, and being responsible for the behavior of others just plain sucks. Here are some examples:

Yesterday, the girl child and I went to the park to meet some friends. We were only going for a short time so I didn't pack any water or anything. And it was late in the afternoon, around 4. Instead of running and playing and having fun like children should when at the park, she first whined at me that no one would play with her (in other words, the children were not gathering about her and proclaiming her glory), and then that she was so deathly thirsty. I said we would go on home; it was just about time anyway, and she starts whining even louder that she didn't want to but she was so thirsty. This is not typical behavior or anything, and I'm sure everyone has days with their kids like this, but it just added to my "I don't wanna grow up" attitude I had been feeling all day.

I moderate a group of women online. They are a fabulous group and we have all become very close. Right now two of the women to speak. Not out and out arguing, just sniping. A topic, which should have been dropped days ago, is continuing to be posted about, and people are starting to take sides and say snide little things like, "some people..." (Donna, I am not posting this specifically to you, I am just getting annoyed about it and want to vent somewhere I don't have to worry about people harping on it). Anyway, these women really should be above this sort of behavior. And I'm stuck wondering if I should jump in and tell everyone to just drop it, or just let it play out. Because I'm afraid this is going to continue for awhile. Again, responsibility sucks.

Well, now my train of thought is being interrupted by Spongebob's opposite day (and how many times have I seen this one?) See? See what snipey women do to me? I start attacking Spongebob, an innocent party in all this. Ack.
(Donna, again, please do not be offended by this one, I'm just feeling whiny and annoyed.)
Ah well, should get back to being an adult.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

A Small Rant About Home Depot

My family and I trekked to the local Home Depot today. We were in search of light bulbs, which were easily acquired, but I was also in the market for something far more exciting. I have been wanting a reel for my hose; oh, not just any reel. I wanted something that wound up 100 feet of hose, all by itself. I wanted it to be portable, preferably with wheels. And I wanted it to not be terribly hideous. A tall order, I know, but one I was perfectly confident our friends at the Home Depot, home of the slogan "you can do it, we can help", could fulfill.

Now, generally when I walk into a Home Depot and head directly for the department I need, I am accosted by any number of over-helpful employees, resplendent in their orange aprons, asking what menial task they could perform in order to make my visit more efficient and/or enjoyable. Whilst I appreciate their concern and attention to customer satisfation, I know exactly what I need and they are only slowing me down, getting in my way, impeding my progress toward home-maintenance perfection. However, and maybe you all have noticed this, the minute I need assistance, there is not an orange apron in sight. I spotted a hose reel, the only hose reel to even closely resemble that which I was seeking, in a box on a very high shelf. A nearby gentleman kindly went in search of an employee to retrieve a reel for himself, and the one I wanted to examine. It took him an eternally long time just to locate the someone, who was on a phone call, but said he would be along very quickly. 15 minutes later, (and we still haven't seen another employee, where was everyone?) the same gentleman decided to climb the shelves to try and retrieve the boxes, a rather dangerous feat, I'm sure you'll all agree. As he scaled the shelves, the employee finally approached, yelling, "sir, sir, please come down..." The gentleman muttered, "It's about damn time", and gestured to the product he wanted. The employee then had to search for a ladder (apparently the ladders were with the other employees...), and finally managed to get the reels down. He complained the entire time about the fact that he did not even work in that department, by the way. He was in lighting.

The moral of this story is, of course; if you must enter a Home Depot, grab one of those orange-aproned employees and hold onto them for your entire visit, just in case. Because if you actually need help, they will scatter like my kids when you mention cleaning. Or anything else vaguely productive.

Oh, by the way; I did purchase the reel he got down. It does not have wheels, but it is portable, and has a handle. Pretty nifty. My hose no longer lies dejectedly on the ground when not in use. So a happy ending all around.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Car Shopping Fun

About seven years ago, my husband and I bought our very first brand new car. A black-as-pitch, Oldsmobile Alero. Soon after the warrantee ran out, we embarked on an adventure of sorts, involving wheel bearings, suspension systems, air conditioner compressors, coolant systems...and the list goes on and on. Essentially, this car gave us nothing but trouble for the past 5 years. As anyone I speak to regularly can attest, I have been in and out of the shop more times than I can count in the last 2 years. To the point that the owner of my preferred mechanic shop recognizes my voice on the phone, "hey Melissa, sure, bring it on in, we'll take a look at it..." So, this week my husband finally tires of the adventure and suggests we shop for a vehicle today. He prefers Saturn, so we set out on a journey to the 3 Saturn dealerships in the tri-state area: Florence, Tri-County, and Mason. Oh yeah, folks, we put over 100 miles on our ailing Alero today. The first place offered us a vehicle slightly out of our price range, the second had just sold what we were looking for, and at the third we dealt with a man with a forked tongue. Well, he may have had a forked tongue. And rubbed against rocks to shed his outer skin...and the cars there were not exactly clean and ready to drive. I know, everyone has probably had to deal with his or her own variety of snaky salesperson, but I chose to document my experience for you all to read. One thing that amused me, however; we were offered a rather decent trade-in value for the Alero at the Florence dealership. The guy in Mason offered us less than half the amount. When we mentioned what the Florence guy offered, he responded, "Really? Did they drive it?" I held in the laughter until we left, because honestly, that was exactly what I thought when the Florence guy offered what he did. At any rate, the kicker is this: I was due to go to a friend's today for some cropping fun with the daughter and Mom. So my plan was to car shop in the morning, then crop in the afternoon. Well, by the time we got to Mason, it was clear we were not going to be done anytime soon. And we ended up purchasing first car we drove in Florence, anyway. It is lovely, though; a blue Saturn L300. We were driving it home as I noticed all the things that worked on this vehicle: the air conditioning. The power windows (yes, the air conditioning didn't work AND only the front passenger side window opened.) No huge rust marks on the front of the car. IN other words, do NOT, under any circumstances, purchase a black '99 Alero from the Florence Saturn dealership.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Monkeybutt and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad...Writing Assignment

I realize I probably should update you all: Katie did very well driving, and we're both alive. Obviously. Good job, Katie.

I had an interesting parenting moment this evening. I've noticed that most people use pseudonyms for their children here (whether they be affectionate or not); I'll use my sister's name for my son here. So my son (we'll call him Monkeybutt) is doing homework this evening. Spelling, which means, of course, writing. There is little Monkeybutt despises more than writing, barring, perhaps, a poke in the eye with a red hot needle. So he tends to zip through his work with nary a care, or correction. In fact, when I question him, I find he doesn't even understand the directions, he's just writing random words in the slots. Now the fact that he had 80% of it correct didn't matter, he didn't actually know what he was doing. So I set about to explaining the assignment to him, he freaks and tells me I'm not supposed to help him (which actually means, "I don't want to know what to do here; just leave it alone so I don't have to actually think"), and then covers his ears and refuses to listen. A raised eyebrow and a mild threat later, he has uncovered his ears and begrudgingly listens (and understands, go figure) to the instructions and corrects his mistakes, then goes up to change for bed. Now my mother has listened to all of this, practically sitting on her hands to keep from slapping him one (admittedly, I had that same impulse, but quelled it as well), and wonders aloud why I would take that kind of disrespect from him. Now Monkeybutt has his moments, but has been growing into himself and truly has become a more delightful and respectful person to be around. I also recognized that his refusal to listen to direction stemmed more from his desire to be done with the assignment, rather than any disrespect. But, I admit, she has a point. It was ridiculous that I let him get away with that behavior. So I call him back down, say something to the effect, "I get that you hate your homework" which starts him anew on the unfairness of it all, etc...(like I never did homework), and Mom got up and left the table so she would keep her mouth shut. I then informed him that whether or not he cared for the assignment, the way he spoke and acted was disrespectful and should he choose to act that way again, he would learn a new meaning for "consequence"...(something like that.) He says he's sorry, goes back upstairs, and Mom comes in. She actually says she admires the way I handled the situation.

Why, you ask, do you bore us with this milelong description of a petty argument with your son? One: it was the most exciting thing that happened today. Seriously. It freaking rained all day and I babysat - whoa. Second: It illustrates two interesting developing aspects of my relationship with my mother and my son. My mom and I can coexist and I can parent - her input is certainly helpful, and she rarely criticizes. And I can surprise her with my own developing parental wisdom (and ability to hold back from whacking my kid upside the head). Oh - and my son can be a pain in the...

Sunday, March 18, 2007


My sister Katie

I am about to teach my sister to drive a stickshift car. So if I don't post again, you will all know why...Wish me luck...and patience.

No Corned Beef for Us...

Ah, sigh. My husband is a walking petrie dish. He had a nasty cold - which managed to infect three of us last week, resulting in one case of bronchitis and one sinus infection - and now has conjunctivitis...which is horribly contagious and I'm sure one of us will end up with it. I should just quarantine him in our room until he is better...

That said, a sick man is a very difficult man to live with. I spent most of the day fetching things for him, making him tea and sandwiches, taking him to urgent care...whine whine...but I had a sinus infection last week and I don't recall being "taken care of." I wonder; is it the "nurturing nature" of the female that lends itself to this particular phenomenon, or is my guy in particular a wuss? Inquiring minds want to know.

Right now I am reading a book by Silas House called "Clay's Quilt". It is set in southeastern Kentucky and written with the heavy "hill" accent prevalent in that area. Unfortunately, having never met anyone from the area, I can't really hear the voices in my head. But it is definitely interesting. If anyone actually reads this, I would love to know what people are reading right now. A friend of mine showed me a website that tells you the accent you have; it is
Good fun.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Let's Start at the Very Beginning...

Ok, so I have this incessant need to talk...and who better to talk to than someone who won't interrupt? I've tried journaling, but I feel more fulfilled when I am talking to someone...

Tonight I played "bunco". It was very good fun, and very enlightening to be one of two sober people in a room of very drunk women. Apparently...and this threw me a bit...I am not the only adult suffering from serious self esteem issues. Hmmm...

But it is late, and I will be suffering if I don't get to bed...
Happy St. Patrick's Day!