Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A very poopy Christmas

My son has taken poop to a whole new level. This kid takes his pooping very seriously and considers it an art form I think. I have never been around a baby who poops as much as he does. I'm not kidding. Even his diapers have given up. They just refuse to hold anything in. I have tried different brands of diapers, going up sizes, going down sizes. I've tried pretty much everything short of duct taping certain orifices closed. He goes through at least 3 outfits a day because he explodes all the time. Rarely does he end the day wearing the same outfit that I put on him that morning. For example, we attended Vince's cousin's wedding on Saturday. I put the kids in their Christmas outfits. Sam looked so dapper in his little red vest and plaid tie. Before we walked out the door I heard the telltale noises that accompany certain devastation. I quickly laid him down on the floor and ripped his clothes off as fast as I could so that he didn't soil them. Whew! Just in time! I changed him and out the door we went. Got to the church and were sitting quietly listening to the wedding vows when Grandma informed me that he had a dirty diaper. She didn't seem alarmed, so I didn't do anything right that moment. About 30 seconds later, she taps me and tells me that it is running down his leg and puddling on the floor. Great! I snatched him up, held him away from my body and pretty much sprinted to the car carrying him belly down to reduce the spread. I can't even describe the scene lest there be someone reading this who has not already vomited. Needless to say, the jeans and shirt that I keep as a back-up outfit were not as cute as his little suit and I missed a chunk of the wedding. We were gone overnight before we could get home and do laundry, so I'm sure that the outfit is a loss. Will someone please explain to me why he does this? He eats solid food! I don't get it. Anyway, my husband is sure to complain about my choice of topics this go-round, so I'll move on.

Speaking of Vince, we have been LOVING this weather! Except the wind, but we get some of that in SD too. We went for our run the other morning and the wind was blowing so hard that we had to walk part of the way because I could not run into the wind for very long. He says it was good resistance training. I say that if he's going to turn into the obnoxiously upbeat running coach, he can run alone. I am up to 2 miles and have talked Vince into going with me sometimes. I'm still not a runner. I hate every step. The whole time I am trying to gauge how much farther I have to go before I can stop. I recently read an article in our paper about running in the cold weather and one lady said that she still hates the actual running part. She just likes the after effects. I hear ya, sister! I like that I can get in a good workout in way less time than walking and I like that I feel like I accomplished something. I guess I need to get some music to take along. The other morning I was trying to take my mind off of running and sang Christmas carols--not very motivating. Silent Night is not running music. And since I run REALLY slowly, it takes a lot of music to get me through 2 miles. I don't know that many Christmas songs. We haven't been able to run in a couple days though. With the wedding and then being in Wichita visiting friends, we have not had time. Maybe tonight. We'll see. I think I stubbed my toe this morning getting out of bed. (Cue sappy music)

We got to meet up with some friends of ours that we met in Arkansas. They were home visiting family in the Kansas City area and agreed to meet us halfway in Wichita. We had a good time. It was nice to hang out with them and catch up. We took the kids to the zoo yesterday morning. Audrey and Kaylee just get along so well. We don't have to worry about them at all when they are together because they are so much alike. Thet both dish it out and they both have to take it! Kaylee's mom (also named Audrey) and I talked the entire time. Vince was joking that the men think we women-folk didn't see even 50% of the animals because we talked so much. We saw the animals, we just didn't care! She and I have a lot of the same ideals and thoughts about life and parenting and our husbands are a lot alike too, so we have lots to chat about in a very limited time. We can't stop talking or we might miss a subject. We miss them. Wish we could gather up all our friends and move them with us when we go. Maybe someday we will be closer and can meet up more often.

We had a good Christmas with Vince's family. The kids were really excited to see all their stuff and Vince and I made out well too! I enjoy being with his family. They are good people who seem to thoroughly enjoy having all of us here. That's not to say that they won't thoroughly enjoy seeing us leave too. I will be excited to see my family as well. It sucks when you live so far away. When I call or something and they are all together I miss all of it. Being around my crazy family can be tough at times, but I sure do miss it most of the time. I know that my mom misses the kids and they miss her too. So it will be nice to get home and see everyone. I will have a new nephew soon and I have never even met his mom! She and my brother have been together for a long time, but we just have not been able to connect. Looking forward to seeing them all. Anyway, I have a 5 year old who is singing, "I wanna wish you a Merry Christmas" over and over as loudly as she can so that I will come help her with something. I gotta stop the singing!!!!

Love and miss you all! XOXO

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Thank you Lord, for this blessed life in which I get to be a mother to 3 beautiful, healthy, happy children, a wife to a wonderfully supportive husband. Thank you also for parents and in-laws who love me no matter how goofy I am and a network of family and friends who surround me with magical acceptance and love. I am truly, truly blessed.

This Christmas we get to spend every minute with our families in Texas and Oklahoma where it is currently a balmy 56 degrees!!!!!!!!!! The wind is a-blowing though. It blew us all over the road on the way down here. I just got through running 2 miles and that wind is brutal! On the way into the wind I sometimes felt like my legs were moving but I wasn't going anywhere. When we left Rapid City, the temperature was below zero and here I just sent my kids outside without coats. I love it. That drive is not so fun though. It's a long haul with 3 little kids. Audrey kept saying, "Are we out of Nebraska yet? Are we out of Nebraska yet? Are we out of Nebraska yet?" NO!!! And it's not as if good 'ol Nebraska is the most scenic of states. I was listening to a radio station and the DJ said something about "Nebraska's Modern Christian station". Audrey goes, "How does the radio know that we're in Nebraska?" LOL! And Katie got very upset when we told her that we were not going to the mall. Oh, how she screamed! But she was certainly happy to see her Grandma and Grandpa.

That's all I have to say for now. We have arrived and are all in one piece just enjoying the company and the warmer temperatures. I hope everyone has a great Christmas and a happy, healthy 2009. Ciao!

Friday, December 19, 2008

More of the same

It's still cold. More cold, worse cold. Colder than cold. We got up to 30 one time this week and it felt downright warm out there. Someday we will look back at this and laugh. I'm not laughing now. My back door was frozen shut. Literally. I could not open it because there was ice growing on the inside of the door at the bottom. It was -13 without a wind chill for a couple days. My heater has been almost at 80 degrees and it is only a little over 60 inside this house. My poor children have had to wear actual clothing in the house. Anyone who knows my kids knows that this is a HUGE feat! I have to tell Katie 300 times a day to put her clothes back on, it's cold in here. You wanna hear a joke? It's not officially winter yet! HA! I'm still trying to remember if we had a summer. There was that week when we wore shorts outside. Maybe that was summer. Boy, do I miss Texas. I can't even count how many times people told me how hot it gets here. We didn't even have to have an air conditioner. That's just wrong. It's not summer until my ass gets stuck to a car seat, okay. You northern people have no clue what a real summer is. But we sure are getting an education about a real winter. Okay, I think I'm done griping about the weather for at least 5 minutes.

It's almost Christmas!! I think I may be more excited than the kids. We are going to do ours a little early here and then not have to haul the presents south with us. I bought most of the stuff when we were home for Thanksgiving and left it with Vince's parents so it's already there and ready for Santa's signature. I wanted to do it today. Vince said we should wait until at least tomorrow. *sigh* I guess. We finally got to take some Christmas pictures. It's been too *&^#*^$ cold to do them outside, so we took the kids to the Reptile Gardens tonight and got as decent a picture as we're gonna get with 3 kids. That sounds weird to go to the Reptile Gardens, but it's a neat place and they have a big jungle dome thing that they decorate with tons of flowers and lights for Christmas. At least it's above 50 degrees in there. That's all I cared about. Trying to get all 3 children looking AT THE CAMERA-damnit! and smiling and not picking noses or blinking or talking or moving is a job for...well I don't know who. Someone who's not me or Vince. I thought he was gonna blow a gasket. Big surprise! Anymore I just settle for one where you can actually see all 3 kids in one frame. It's not worth getting an ulcer over. Because, trust me if anyone can give you an ulcer, it's my kids. So, I got the pictures taken. Now let's see if I ever get the Christmas cards made and in the mail. Take the safe bet and say no.

I have been making these corn therapy pillows to give to our neighbors and Audrey's teacher for Christmas. I decided to make 3 bigger ones for the dogs. They are trapped in a little pen in my dining room next to the sliding glass door. It's a little chilly there, but I think they'd rather be there than the backyard right now. Buddy--God bless his little beagle soul--can't help himself. He has chewed a hole in one of the pillows and is eating the corn. Dumb dog. Whenever I hear him crunching away, I yell at him to stop. But a few minutes later I hear him start up again. I know he's not hungry, he just can't stop because he's a beagle. I wish I had that excuse for why I can't stop eating. I have been working out still, it's just been here and there lately. I barely left the house while it was so cold because it's just too much work to get the kids bundled, the car scraped and warmed, the bags of stuff carried, the children carried so they don't get too much snow in the car, etc. Then when you get somewhere, it takes so long to get everyone into the store or whatever and then you have this mountain of coats and hats and gloves and yada, yada, yada. It's just too much work. I have the treadmill that I have been using, but I just don't self-motivate very well. My friend Sheri will be proud of me though. I have been running at least a mile and a half when I do get on there. I know that doesn't sound like much, but for me (soooo not a runner) that's a lot! Vince laughs when I call it running. To him, it's more like a VERY slow jog. To make matters worse, I am going to start the baking tomorrow. Every year, I bake all kinds of goodies for our neighbors. This year we are doing Outrageous Brownies (and yes, they are outrageous), no-bake cookies, Mexican wedding cookies, and possibly the peanut-butter snack mix. Usually I hog all the snack mix. It's addicitive. I hope our neighbors like chocolate! I'm even taking some to THE neighbor. I promise not to poison her. I have a rule now. Whenever I see her or think about her I say a prayer for her. To help her be a happier person. 'Cause she needs all the help she can get!

Well, I should get off here since it's almost midnight and it's getting colder in here by the minute. I'm gonna snuggle up next to my furry man under 3 blankets with my heated corn bags on my feet and try not to think about the weather again until morning. Wish me luck.

Monday, December 15, 2008


I sent out an e-mail recently saying that we were expecting some more nasty weather and the high was going to be 4. I was wrong. It didn't even make it to 4. It stayed below zero all day and got as low as about -15 last night. This morning when Vince let the dogs out for their morning romp, they went out for about one minute and when they came back in they were yelping in pain because their paws were so cold. It's not just cold here, it's ^#$(*&%!* COLD!! I went out yesterday afternoon and my car didn't want to start. Vince's truck didn't start this morning until he charged it for about 2 hours. I cannot wait to get back south! I can't believe that people actually settled here on purpose. Can you imagine being a homesteader here? Living in a mud hut in this weather? I've got the heat cranked and am wearing sweats and I'm still cold. I'm never cold, just ask Vince. They are saying that it's going to heat up by Thursday. We will have a high in the low 20's. To us, that is not a high, it's just a higher low! Okay, moving on.

I took the kids sledding the other day at the park. Audrey loved it. Katie didn't want to sled because she found a "walking stick". Whenever we go somewhere she picks up sticks and carries them with her. This one was particularly special I suppose, because when we were leaving the park and she had to leave it behind she was very upset. I basically had to pick her up and put her in the car. In the car it was, "Walking stick, I looove you." in the most pitiful wailing voice. She was so mad at me. She cried forever. When we got home, she was still crying and said that she wanted to go see Jim and Sherri (our adopted grandparent neighbors). I guess she needed more sympathy than I was willing to dish out. In no time, and with plenty of hugs and freshly baked cookies, she was in a better mood. Thank God for them. They are wonderful. Anytime my girls see them working in the yard, or playing outside with the dogs they have to go over and see them. I always feel like I'm going to get on their nerves by letting my kids go over there all the time, but they never seem to mind. Their kids and grandkids all live far away, so I suppose they enjoy having kids over.

Vince and I got to go on date night Friday. Our church hosts it by taking the kids from 5-9 and feeding them supper. It only costs me $10 for all 3 kids. We went to a super-nice restaurant called Delmonico Grill downtown. The food was superb. Expensive, but superb. Then we strolled through downtown and looked at all the lights and store windows. Actually it was more like a mall-walk since it was so cold. Then we decided to go play some pool at a local sports bar. But we only had $1 in cash, so we only got to play one game. So sad! That's okay though because I play so poorly that Vince was really just playing by himself. So, we just sat and drank our beer and had some actual uninterrupted, adult conversation. I drank a little too much though. I felt like crap all night and couldn't sleep. I've become a lightweight! I guess that happens as you get older. The kids had a good time too. Our sanctuary is designed so that they can take out all the chairs and turn it into a huge indoor gym area. They had a big bouncy castle set up and basketball hoops and all the balls you can imagine. Audrey was being shy until she saw the bouncy castle. Then it was, "bye, mom." Katie was in the nursery with the little kids for a while and then they took her in with the big kids too. She doesn't mind the nursery since they have swings hanging from the ceiling in there. That's one of her favorite things to do. I imagine that as long as Sam had an artificial booby available he was a happy camper too.

Sam is 7 months today! He's so close to crawling. He just lifts himself up and rocks back and forth. He has to be moving all the time. He's a wiggle-worm. He cannot sit still. He's at the point where when I am feeding him, if there is anything else going on in the room, he wants to look. He tries to take the nipple with him. If he can't do that, he just unlatches every 15 seconds to look around and make sure he's not missing something. Meanwhile I'm squirting milk everywhere. It's very messy. I wonder if they make baby blinders? Right now he's in his bed screaming because I put him down for a nap. Sounded like a good idea to me. I think I will go curl up on the couch in a big fuzzy blanket with some cappucino. My toes are about to freeze even with these wool socks on. Stay warm!

Oh, one more thing--GO COWBOYS!!!!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Christmas Joy?

When we went to go cut down our tree, I had all these fantastic idealistic dreams of how the evening would go. We'd drive into the forest, a happy family loving each other's company. Then we'd pick the perfect tree, take the obligatory pictures, carry it to the car, where we would crack open the thermos of hot chocolate and enjoy. Then when we got home, we would decorate the most beautiful tree together as a family while Christmas carols played in the background. A lovely scene, yes? Cut to my reality--it was almost dark by the time we finished moving furniture into the garage to make room for the tree. Then we had to wake Sam up from his nap, get everyone loaded and head out. Then the snow started. When we finally reached our destination, it was darn near black in the forest. The kids had all fallen asleep, so Vince and I argued about which tree was best all alone while they slept in the warm car. Then we hiked back to the car to get the stuff and the kids, who were not happy about being woken up and wanted to dip into the hot chocolate already. So we got them bundled and the chocolate poured while I tried to wrestle Sam into his carrier with his bunting on over my thick coat. Hat, mittens, blanket-can't see where I'm going and can't hear over the screaming baby. I finally caught up with the others and broke out the camera to catch a picture of the girls with red noses, smiles, and hot chocolate down the front of their freshly laundered coats standing in front of Charlie Brown's Christmas tree. Vince cuts down the tree while I hold the flashlight, camera, baby and blanket and 2 empty cups of hot chocolate. Vince starts to carry the tree out when Katie falls in the snow. Major drama! So he ends up carrying her and the tree all the way to the car in the dark and snow. Audrey was content to walk-this time. Put the kids back in the car, crank up the heat and we're off. At about 15 miles an hour because by this time, the roads are slick with snow and ice and we don't want to skid off somewhere. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a nervous wreck in the car when any kind of weather hits. I'm sure it was fun for Vince! When we finally get home I sit down to feed a very cranky baby while Vince tries to trim the tree to fit our house. In the meantime, the girls have found the decorations and have pulled them all out of their boxes and wrappers and strung them throughout the house. I will be finding those little hooks in my carpet (with my bare feet at 3 in the morning, I'm sure) until they are in college. I break out all my lights that have been in storage for 2 years and plug them in--NOTHING! Not one of the seven strands of lights work. I finally get half a strand working by sheer luck when I fling them across the room. So, I sat down to painstakingly go through each strand light by light to determine which bulbs were burnt out or had shorts. 2 hours and 1 and a half working strands later, I gave up. I declared it a Christmas disaster. Vince snorted at me from his spot at the computer and told me to go buy some new lights tomorrow. Tomorrow? I had the tree up and 2 little girls fighting over the decorations and he wants me to wait until tomorrow? I just brought out the 3 new boxes of lights that I bought last year and never used and threw away all the others. My tree has less lights than I wanted, but at least they're on there. By this time, it was bed time for the kids anyway. We put them to bed amid much wailing about not having the tree done. Let's just say that the next morning didn't go very well either. By the time Vince got home from work, the tree was decorated and I was at my wit's end. God Bless the little children, right?

Monday, December 1, 2008

Surrounded by turkeys

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. We just hung out here and cooked up a little feast and then tried to watch some football, but with 3 kids, I don't get much watching done. Vince, on the other hand, just ignores as best he can and follows the games with a focus only known to men on football days. On Friday we tried not to venture out of the house to avoid being trampled by the masses on their way to fight over the latest gadgets. I don't know about you guys, but I'm thinking God doesn't intend for us to make Christmas about how much stuff we can get at bargain basement prices. I love a deal as much as the next person, but seriously? I guess I just don't get why I would want to get up at 3AM to wait in line for the doors to open and then fight the crowds to maybe get a great deal on some silly thing. Personally I would rather pay full-price or not get it at all. There was a 15 year old girl who got punched in the throat at our Wal-Mart by an adult man because she got the last X-Box. And the guy who was trampled by the shoppers in New Jersey? They just need to take all those people out. Who does that? Maybe I'm just a snob. Maybe I'm smart. Who knows?

Friday night we ended up in the ER with Katie. She woke up around midnight with a horrible croupy cough. She couldn't even talk, she was so choked up. Her little chest was just sinking in with the effort to breathe. I took her outside in the cold air for about 10 minutes, but that wasn't really helping, so off we went. Vince stayed with the other sleepers. At the hospital, they gave us some meds to help her breathe and sent us home. We were back at home in our beds within one hour of getting to the hospital! That's a record. That was the best experience in an ER that I have ever had. I remember sitting with a 2 yr. old Audrey for 5 hours in the ER waiting room. Her eye had swollen up after a bug bite. She looked horrible. The eye was swelled shut and then some and was so red and hot. Finally after 5 hours they showed us to a room in the back where we waited for another hour just to be seen by a doctor. Vince was so stinkin' mad I thought he was gonna kill someone just to get some attention. The entire time we were there, her eye was getting worse and worse. Poor baby. It was awful. If you are ever in Sierra Vista, AZ and have an emergency, just keep driving the hour to Tucson. I guarantee you will be out of there and back home before you are even noticed at the ER in Sierra Vista. They have too many illegals cramming the system.

Whew! I am really rolling tonight, huh? Someone take this soap box before I really go off! I might hurt myself. Anyway, Katie is feeling better except for this stupid cold that keeps coming back and finding it's way into the rest of us. I swear, this kid gets colds all the time. And she keeps giving them to Sam because she's always in his face. Now Sam has a really bad cough. Right before I was leaving for the YMCA tonight, I picked him up to say goodnight and he started coughing so much, he choked and threw up all over me. Yay! Dontcha just LOVE kids? I was late to the Y. The night that Katie woke up so sick, she was trying to tell me that she thought she had the hiccups. (I guess that was what she figured the weird cough was). I told her that she was croupy and she said, "and creepy" in her froggy voice. I just had to laugh.

Well, I think that I have all my Christmas shopping done. I keep saying that and then I think of something else that someone would love and then I'm not done! But really, I'm done now. Vince says so. I was at the fabric store the other day and saw that tulle was 50% off so I thought I would make the girls some tutus. They are so easy and the girls love to play dress up. When I brought it home, Vince just rolled his eyes at me. They will be really cute, cheap Christmas gifts I think. I seriously only spent $2 on all the stuff I needed. I have been sewing up a storm. I've made 2 more dresses for the girls, a tote bag, and the tutus--but you really don't have to sew them if you don't want to. The fabric store is a dangerous place. I could spend lots of money in there. My problem is that when I get started on a project, I don't want to quit until it's done. Probably because that means I have to put everything away and clean up when I take a break since I have no place to sew but my dining table or coffee table. And it really stinks to have to put it all away and then pull it all back out. If I didn't though there would be a thread trail to China and back and Katie probably wouldn't have any hair and Audrey would reset my machine to some crazy settings that I would have no idea how to fix. That's what happpens when you turn your back for 2 minutes. Can you imagine what would happen if I left my stuff out all the time?

Sam is starting to fuss. I'm sure he needs his night time booby fest so he can get back to sleep for a while. I wish I could sleep until morning without being awakened. I wouldn't know what to do with a full night's sleep! I was going to say that I will have to wait until my kids are out of the house for that, but by that time I'll be so old that I will have to get up to pee every hour. I think my power-sleeping nights are behind me. Too bad, I was really good at it.

I hope you all have visions of sugarplums dancing in your heads tonight. Mine will likely be more along the lines of sugared donuts. Happy snoozing.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Toy giveaway update

First thing the next morning, I heard the kitchen stool being scraped across the floor. I looked into the hallway by the front door and there was Audrey peering into the little entryway between the front door and the screen door where I had put the toys. They were still there of course because I did not have the good sense to stash them in the car yet. She immediately broke down into a tantrum of titanic proportions. UGH! Dumb mommy! Of course this woke Katie up who came running to see what the problem was. She went straight for the entryway, saw the toys and started crying too. My goodness! Are my girls always going to be this dramatic? My guess would be yes, given the DNA that they have inherited.

Sunday night I got tricked into a Mary Kay party so I left the kids with their daddy. I was gone almost 2 hours. When I was headed home, I called to let Vince know that I was on my way. He sounded down so I asked him what was the matter. He said that it had been a disaster and he would tell me when I got home. Everything looked fine when I got there. The house was not charred, the girls still had all limbs attached, Sam was asleep on Vince's chest. What was the problem? Sam had a poopy diaper earlier that leaked everywhere and it was gross and Vince had to clean it up. Big whoop! I do that at least 3 times a day! Welcome to my world, husband of mine. Why do men act like baby poop is nuclear waste? This is a man who can gut a deer with bare hands, who arrests unwashed, drunken idiots for a living and a 6-month old's diaper is gonna bring him to his knees? What a wuss! (Kidding, honey! Love you!)

Well, I should get off here and give my wuss a kiss for letting me get out of the house for a couple hours sans kids. Here's another thought to ponder: Why do I have to ask him to babysit his own children? He just tells me when he is going somewhere and assumes that I will watch them. What's up with that?

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Toy meltdown

Vince and I thought we were doing a good thing. We decided that the kids could stand to get rid of a few of the toys that are currently covering their bedroom floor. Usually when I do this it is under the cover of darkness and can be likened to smuggling weapons of mass destruction out of the country. This time we were not so smart. We thought the kids might be old enough to understand that there are less fortunate children out there who will not have any toys for Christmas and so it would be GREAT! for us to be Santa's biiiiig helpers and give those kids some of our toys. And also to make room for the new toys that Santa might bring us. Not to mention grandparents. It didn't go so well. Someone outside our house might have thought that our kids were being torn limb from limb by all the moaning and wailing going on. I mean, stupid nonsense toys that have been buried in the toy tub for months are now being treasured like they are the ark of the covenant or something. Some of these are silly McDonald's toys! Geez! Once I got the three toys that they were willing (kinda) to get rid of and put them in boxes, we all said goodbye to them and put them in a safe place for Santa to come and get. Katie started screaming hysterically and Audrey was moaning. We should have broken out the bagpipes because you'd have thought someone died. After they were tucked in and asleep, I snuck in and smuggled out some more. Just wait until they wake up and begin their inventory. I'm sure that we'll have to deal with much more wailing. I suggested to Audrey that we take their play kitchen since it takes up lots of space (even though it's a small, cheap one) and Katie is the only one that ever plays with it. Audrey ran over there and hugged it and said, "But I was going to play with it tomorrow!" Yeah, right. Their room is so messy right now. Kinda like the rest of my house. Katie got home from church and went to her room to play. When I checked on her because she was being so quiet, I found her asleep on the floor. I had to take a picture because I literally had a hard time finding her on the floor of their room. It's like "Where's Waldo?"! I'm gonna put that picture up here so you can see that I'm not exaggerating. This is why we need to get rid of some toys! Mom, this post is for you--don't go crazy with the toys this year! Get them a college fund or something! *kisses*

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hi there!

Well, hello again! I'm here somewhere. We went home to visit and I really don't have access to a computer much when I'm out and about. I really missed my blog though. I was like a crack addict (or a candy addict) having withdrawals. I kept thinking about what I was going to write when I got home and about all the funny things that I have to report. I was worried about my "peeps" too. Where would you all go for your daily dose of crazy? Well, wonder no more because I'm back in business! Of course I can't remember many of those funny things that I was going to blog about 'cause I have slept since then. And I have children.

We had a nice time visiting. It was a whirlwind trip. Vince was teaching a class and we just tagged along with him, so we didn't get to see many friends. Mainly just hung out with the fam. But when we come home for Christmas we should be able to see more people. Sometimes when we go back home, it's like we're celebrities or something. Everyone wants a piece of us. We went to a high-school football game in Vince's home town and they announced his presence! Funny. It's a long trip down there I tell ya that. Three kids in the car for 14 hours is just about too much. Poor Sam decided on the way home that he'd had enough. I nursed him when we stopped, but he started screaming on the road so we stopped on the side of the highway to let him nurse again to see if he would fall asleep. He ate for about 15 minutes. We put him back in his seat and he started screaming again. We tried to let him cry until he fell asleep, but an hour later when our heads were ready to explode from all the noise between him crying and the girls playing and watching a movie, we decided that I would switch places with Audrey and try to sooth him. He wanted nothing to do with me until I broke out the baby food. By the last bite, he was half asleep. Apparently we had been starving the child. The good news is we made it there and back in one piece and we didn't have to make good on our promise to strap any unruly children to the top of the vehicle.

Geez, did I eat while I was there. Vince's mom always buys tons of food and I try my best to eat it all. Honey buns and sweet rolls for breakfast, chips and guacamole to snack on...it's no wonder I look fat in the pictures we took! His dad always says he likes it when company comes because there's food in the house and Mom cooks! Since we've been back I've had to hit the gym. I'm going to boot camp 4 times a week now and squeezing in my other classes sometimes too. I have also been volunteering in the drop-in nursery there so that we can get our membership for free. We go Thursdays from 8am to 1pm. It's very tiring because I have my 3 in there as well as everyone else's kids. I'm not by myself of course, but it can get pretty busy in there. I don't think I could work there and do that every day all day. I have enough trouble not beating my own children and I birthed them! Today we were getting ready to leave and I was packing up all my stuff and gonna go run and get the car since we have to park at least 4 blocks away when I looked over and realized that Katie had climbed into one of the beds and gone to sleep! Great. She got almost 20 minutes by the time I got the car, loaded the other 2 in and came back to get her. Then of course she wouldn't lay down when we got home. I guess 20 minutes was enough for her. Not for me. She has been cranky all night. She was pretty funny at Grandma and Grandpa's house. They were naked, running in circles around the living room and Katie had one of her Daddy's hats on. She would tip the hat and say, "Howdy, partner." It was just hilarious coming from a little streaker like that. She never broke her stride.

Since it has gotten cold here I have had to unpack all the winter stuff and try to find stuff for Sam. I discovered a big box of boy clothes that I had forgotten about. I put it in the back of the closet when a friend gave us the stuff because it was 12+ month stuff. Well, he can wear most of it now. I swear this kid has more clothes than Mariah Carey. He could wear a different outfit every day for a month I bet. I'm not complaining though. Most of his clothes are hand-me-downs or borrowed from friends so I didn't have to shell out any money for his wardrobe. That's awesome.

Here I am blogging as if my life depended on it while my house lays in ruins. This place looks like a tornado blew through here. Vince came in this afternoon and told me he's been in crack houses that looked better. We were too big for this house when we bought it and we have just kept on growing. I literally have no room for lots of stuff. There are things just sitting in corners and on my counters because we have no more room to put it. It's so frustrating. I can hardly walk in here sometimes. It doesn't help that I am the world's worst housekeeper. I would rather just leave so I don't have to look at it than be here and have to see it or worse yet, actually clean it. It's a vicious cycle. The dirtier it gets, the less I want to clean because it looks insurmountable. I don't even know where to start. That's why I like that show "Clean Sweep" because it makes me feel better about my own house. There's always some place worse than this.

Speaking of dirty, I was just informed that there is a poopy diaper that needs to be changed. I guess that's my cue. Lucky me.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Just got back from Boot Camp. My arms are noodles. I will try to type the best I can. We had another blizzard recently. If you all recall, we survived our first one back in May. This one was worse. Winds up to 80 MPH. They closed the interstate for 2 days. The paper reported that there were around 200 cars stranded on I-90 from Mitchell, SD to the Wyoming border. Since things have cleared up a lot today, they are sending out rescue crews to see if there are any people still stranded. It's ridiculous. I told my mom that I was going to be on the next train out of here since the airport was closed. We had drifts in our yard and driveway up to my knees. At our house we got about a foot, but up in Deadwood, they got about 48 inches. Man am I glad that I live here in Rapid and not in the Northern Hills. I got to go out and shovel the sidewalk and driveway after I got the kids in bed and it had stopped snowing. That's a workout I tell ya. Took me forever. Audrey and Katie went and played in it and only lasted 15 minutes. Then last night they went out and played for a long time. Audrey was disappointed that the snow was starting to melt. Katie played until after dark and we had to make her come in. She was making snow angels. I really want to go out and make a snowman. They'd get a kick out of that. But what to do with the little man? I can't really keep him out there and I don't want to leave him in the house where I can't hear him. I should get a picture of him with his first snow. People were out in full force today. I guess they were tired of being cooped up in the house for 2 days.

Sam is really starting to dig this whole eating thing. He's a hungry boy. Ate 6 jars of food the other day. I made him a ton of food a couple days ago. Sweet potatoes and some butternut squash. I had already made some applesauce in the fall and still have some carrots and peas to cook up. That should hold him for at least a week! He's figured out that he can make "raspberry" noises and is wanting to crawl. He puts his knees up under his body and rocks, but hasn't yet developed the arm strength to get up and do a crawl. Last night he was laying in bed with Vince and just talking away. Looking at the wall and just squealing and talking to no one. Just testing out his vocal cords I suppose. It's so cute when they do that. Speaking of cute, Katie was singing again last night. She says the funniest stuff. It's just words all strung together to no particular tune, but she really gets into it. I have her on tape. I was laughing so hard that I couldn't hold the camera still. She loves music and dancing. I have a feeling that she may be our resident athlete. Sometimes when we go for walks, she asks if she can run. She runs the entire time and it's not like she's just going in a straight line either. She runs up ahead and then comes back to us and then repeats this over and over. She's not even winded. I would be dying! She also can catch a ball really well (for a 2 year old) and likes to throw the football back and forth with her daddy. Audrey barely suffered through soccer. That's okay because she's our artist. Right now she's making a book. It's funny. "Blue's Clues Book About Learning for Children." She brings me a picture and then tells me what to write for the illustration. She was very disappointed that school was canceled yesterday. She hasn't missed any yet, but when we go to Oklahoma next week, she will and she was mad when we told her. She really likes it. She has a boyfriend. His name is Lukas. They had their school pictures last Wed. and I didn't drive this trip. Lukas's mom was there and she e-mailed me after to tell me how cute they were. She said that Lukas has never mentioned Audrey as his girlfriend before, but when the photographer asked him if he had a girlfriend, he got really quiet and then blushed and said Audrey. She said that they were adorable together. I'm not sure what to think of this whole thing. It's cute, but on the other hand...

Here's an update on my mom's skull that they found. The next day, the rangers came and they went out to see if they could find the same place again. They didn't, but apparently they got close because they found more bones and come clothing. They think it's a female judging from the size of the bones and they are dating this back to the 1980's due to some other clues they found that I probably should not blog about. Vince's friend Mike is on the case too. It's a real on-going investigation and I can't wait to see how it pans out. Maybe my mom will be on Dateline or 20/20 or something. Cool. But the coolest thing is that maybe these bones will bring someone closure and they will know for sure what happened to their loved one instead of wondering what happened.

It's lunchtime and judging by the crankiness level in my house, it's also nap time. Maybe once they lay down I can actually go to the bathroom by myself. Wouldn't that be nice? I won't hold my breath. I haven't had privacy in the bathroom since 2003. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Hello, my name is Nicole and I am a candy addict. (Hello, Nicole). I simply cannot stay out of the Halloween candy. My lifelong motto that I learned from my father is "if it's there, eat it." It's really an issue. I have been doing so well and have lost at least 1 pant size since starting at the YMCA and here I am eating myself into a chocolate coma. I keep telling myself that it's better for the children if I eat the candy instead of them. Right? I just want it gone so that there is nothing there to eat! Someone should save me from myself.

If there is anyone out there who is still debating whether boys and girls are different from birth, or if it's their environment that makes them behave differently, I am here to set things straight. My son is all boy already at 5 months. Know how I know? Because when I change his diaper, he is in the habit of grabbing hold of his junk and hanging on for dear life until I wrench it from his hands to put a clean diaper on. Seriously. He's already practicing the time-honored male rituals of re-adjusting and hanging onto it just in case it falls off. And he does it all with a smile on his face. Men! (insert eye-roll here) It's definitely genetic.

Katie has recently been waking in the middle of the night crying or moaning or calling for one of us. I don't know if it's nightmares or what, but I feel sorry for her. Most of the time when I respond, she is already back asleep or almost there and I just rub her back or hair for a minute and she's fine. She does this most nights and sometimes several times a night. Last night, when I went to her, she was kinda awake and said to me, "I just don't believe it", which is one of her catch phrases. I just laughed and went back to bed. The second time she told me, "Mom, I don't love you right now." No laughing this time. I don't know where she got that, but it's really annoying. I know she doesn't mean it, especially when she's half awake, but it still gets me. Maybe she says it because she knows where the Halloween candy is going. Then this afternoon she told me that Sam couldn't have any candy because he could only eat "cereal and carrots and your fingers." LOL! She's so hilarious sometimes. And the delivery is the best. With her little face and mis-pronounced words.

Well, I should get off of here and start supper. There's not much in the cabinets. I'm gonna have to make something up on the fly. I'm thinking fried Snickers and twice-baked Milk Duds with a side of Whoppers and some Dum-Dums for dessert.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween fun

The girls had a great time for Halloween. Of course I'm a little biased, but I think they were the cutest kids out there. We met up with some friends at a local church and did the Fall Festival thing. Our little friend Jake was Wubbzy and his little sister was Daisy from the show Wow, Wow Wubbzy. All the moms out there know who I'm talking about. It's Jake's fave show. They were so cute! And his mom dressed up too. She figured that since Jake always refers to her as Widget instead of Mommy, she should go as Widget. Too funny. This is the friend named Heidi that Audrey always calls Tiny. She is pretty little, but I think the moniker came from Audrey not understanding what I was saying. Anyway, after the church scene, where we picked up approximately 80 pounds of candy and 13 stuffed animals, we headed out to pick up some loot from our neighbors. We have some really nice people that live next door. They are the same age as my parents and have grandkids the same age, but they live far away. So, they call themselves Grandpa Jim and Grandma Sherri and spoil our kids rotten. Whenever I can't find Audrey, I head next door to find her snuggled up next to Jim in the chair or hanging outside with Sherri in her garden. They think I'm a good mom, and I don't want to spoil the illusion for them, so I play the game. But behind closed doors...I'm kidding! So, after that we went to our other friend's house on the other side of town. Katie and Sam both fell asleep on the way there, but Audrey stole enough candy from Rich and Carol for 50 kids, so we're covered. Rich and Carol just had twins last week. Hadie and Livia. They were 6 lbs. ?oz. and 7lbs. 11 oz.! Livia is still in the NICU because her lungs aren't developed yet and she needs a little more time. She'll probably get to come home today or tomorrow. They are so tiny! I can't remember mine being that little. It's amazing how quickly they grow. Of course Sam was never that little and at 5 months is wearing 12 month clothes. The little toot ate 6 jars of baby food yesterday afternoon! I couldn't believe it. He probably would have eaten more, but I stopped feeding him after his 6th jar. I was afraid he would explode. He's only been eating solids for about 2 weeks now. His diapers are way less explosive, just in case you were wondering! Well, except for the one yesterday. But the dogs helped clean that one up. LOL! You guys should know by now that no subject is too gross or embarrassing for me to talk about. Sorry.

Speaking of topics that no one likes to talk about--I used to get upset about my boobs being closer to the floor after 3 children, but I'm learning that it's not all bad. At least at night when I'm feeding Sam and doze off, I don't have to worry about trying to hold him up to my chest. I can set him on my lap and still feed him. Yay for gravity! I'm going to apologize right now to my father-in-law in case he reads this blog. Sorry Sam!

My mom called (well, texted. I never really TALK to anyone in my family anymore) yesterday afternoon to tell me that she and some friends who are on a trail ride in Oklahoma found a human skull while riding. They looked around for any other bones, but that was all they found. The park rangers are coming in this morning to look at it and try to figure out where they found it (they were lost in the woods at the time) and determine where it came from and all that. How cool is that? She's getting irritated because they are going to have to spend the day today dealing with it and she needs to get home and get the horses put up and get ready for work tomorrow. I told her she should have left it on the ranger's front steps with a note. I was kidding of course. My hubby used to be an Oklahoma Park Ranger. That would be very irresponsible of me to suggest that. ;) I told Vince I hoped that it would bring someone closure. It's probably a hundred year old Indian grave or something. But it could be a missing person.

Vince and I have been laughing recently at some of the Indian names that we see in the paper. We live very close to several reservations and so much of the population here is Native American. Not to make light of them or their heritage, but some of the names are truly unfortunate. A lady in the paper today was named Scabby Face. Another was Wolfguts. Crooked Eyes. One Skunk. It makes you wonder how their ancestors got those names. Interesting. Moving on before I offend someone...

I didn't make it to Boot Camp yesterday since Katie slept until past 9 and it starts at 9. I really needed that class this week since I have probably eaten 50 of the 80 pounds of candy and the leftover cookies from Audrey's party. UGH! My husband came up with a brilliant solution. Just wake her up! Uh, hellllooo?! Has he never heard the first rule of parenting? Never, never wake a sleeping baby! It's easy for him to suggest since he will leave for the day and leave me trapped in this 1200 square foot crazy house with a tired, cranky 2 yr-old and her partners in crime. He has lots of great parenting advice. Like when one of the kids gets into something they shouldn't be into and makes a mess and I gripe about having to clean it up. I should just watch them better. LOL! I admit that sometimes I should know more about what my kids are doing at all times, but as anyone who has ever attempted to simultaneously not burn dinner, feed a screaming baby, set the table, break up sibling fights, talk on the phone, answer the door, pay bills, etc. knows--it's not that simple! Often I welcome the quiet until I realize it probably means that one of my children is enticing the other one to ingest bubble bath or something equally non-edible.

With that in mind, I leave you now to check on the kids. I heard the words "marker" and "mommy's carpet" mentioned in the same sentence a minute ago. Be afraid, be very afraid.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Well, now that the kids are finally in bed I can type to my heart's content. It's been one crazy week here at our house. I have pretty much been in Halloween costume Pergatory. I took that sewing class so that I could finish Audrey's costume. I learned a lot in the class, but now I think I know just enough to be dangerous. The class ended on Monday night, so this week I have been slaving away over the machine trying to make sense of the pattern and the fabric. Just for the record, I do not recommend working with fleece as a beginning project. I'm lucky the silly dress fits her! I just completed everything this evening and then had to bake cookies for the pre-school Halloween party. Audrey didn't sign me up to bring juice boxes or Cheetos or something. She signed me up for the home-baked cookies. Thanks a lot! Anyway, back to the sewing. Tuesday I was so frustrated because my hand-me-down sewing machine that is an ancient relic kept seizing up on me. Every 15 minutes I would have to stop and untangle everything and re-thread it all. (I'm sure it's all the machine's fault and nothing to do with the operator). Vince and I were trying to talk about Christmas gifts for the girls and he happened to ask what I wanted at a moment when I was cussing my machine. So, the next night we went out and I got a new sewing machine. Yay! Except I feel bad because I really don't use it all that often. Oh, well. It's not like I picked the $300 one. Maybe I'll just have to use it more often, especially now that I have this pattern figured out. I can make some dresses for the girls.

So, not much else has been going on in our lives recently. Vince has been working a lot and the kids and I have been going to the YMCA a lot. I think I'm over that hump where I hate to exercise. Now I look forward to the classes. Except for the one day when we did 200 squats. Yes, you read that right-200! If I ever walk in and she has those little tiny weights and a squirrely gleam in her eyes, I'm outta there! That sucked. But I was so proud because I was one of the only ones to do them all without stopping and I kept my weight on my shoulders the whole time. I was so happy I treated myself to some ice cream afterward. You see why I need to exercise more? I have also been going to a class called boot camp. It's on Saturday mornings and it's filled with mostly older folks who can kick my ass! I'm always the last one finished. But at least I finish. We basically do cardio to get our hearts going and then go do some strength training and then repeat. I come out of there like a wet noodle! And I'm still going to spinning. It's getting easier. Not that it's easy, but at least I can now participate a little easier and not just sit there trying to keep pedaling. Like you all care about my workout routine, right?

Katie is talking way more lately. She's still a little hard to understand sometimes. We still rely on Audrey to translate. The past couple of weeks, she has been saying two funny things. When you ask her a yes-or-no question, sometimes she'll say, "Yes, but no." or "No, but yes." Huh? What the heck? I have to keep asking her until she gives me a straight answer. Then she also will say, just out of the blue, "Mom, I don't love you right now." Uh, thanks. She's still smothering Sam all the time. I have to tell her constantly to get out of his face or to get off of him. She will lay down on top of him to love on him and he's under there grunting just trying to catch his breath. Poor thing. She LOVES her brother. She always tells him he's "da bess baby in da woowd." (best baby in the world for those of you that don't speak toddler) or that he's "da cutest baby evuh." (spoken in a shrill, mommy-esque voice) She always wants to hold him or carry him or kiss him. I really have to watch her.

Audrey is still her precocious little self. I swear she's a smart little toot. Today we had edamame at lunch and sometimes when the girls are trying to get the beans out of the pods, they shoot out. We always laugh about it because those little suckers can really go far! When Vince got home, he asked Audrey what we did today and she told him that we had a bean toss. I didn't understand at first, but then I realized she was making a joke about the edamame squirting out. It was cute. Maybe you had to be there. On a side note, it wasn't until recently that I realized they liked edamame. I made a big deal about how fun it was to squirt the beans into your mouth and they loved it. We eat them all the time now. I can't get enough. Katie will eat all hers and then ask for more before she eats anything else on her plate. They are so good and good for you!

Audrey is really liking school and I think she's doing well too. She LOVES her teacher, Miss Holli. And I think she's thriving there. Miss Holli seems to enjoy having Audrey in her class and Audrey is coming home with all kinds of neat stuff and seems to be learning a lot. Everything right now is about letters. They do a new letter every week. This week was H for Halloween. So, when she picks up a toy or sees a picture of something, she'll say, "Does this start with the letter H?" and make the H sound. She tries to sound it out herself. It's neat to see her starting to put it all together.

Sam is starting to eat more solids. I tried to give him rice cereal, but he just hated it and would refuse to eat it. So, the doctor told me to just try some vegetables and see if he likes those better. He's had carrots, peas, sweet potato, and pears. He likes them all and is starting to get into it more. He opens his mouth really wide when he sees the spoon coming at him. This afternoon, I nursed him and he was still acting hungry, so I gave him half a jar of peas. He was still hungry after that and ate a whole jar of pears too. He definitely has a hearty appetite. The doctor also told us that we should be better about making him sleep through the night. He was still up nursing 3 times a night and the Doc said that it's just a habit and not because he's truly hungry. So we let him cry it out for a couple nights. Now, he just eats around 10:30 or so and then sleeps until 4:30, which is way better than his old schedule. That was a rough couple of nights for us. Well, it was for me and him. Vince snored through the whole thing! The man can sleep through anything. I don't know what our poor kids would do if they had to rely on Daddy for anything at night. I tell him all the time that he's lucky I'm around to do everything. If I was gone, he would be in serious trouble! Dishes would be rotting in the sink, everyone would be sick to death of eating goulash for every meal, there would be no toilet paper anywhere near the toilet-roll hangers, and the only person with clean clothes would be Vince. I swear. I could go on, but I won't. I love him, but sometimes...

It's been a long week and I've been up late every night, so I'm hitting the hay. Right after I switch the laundry around, do a load of dishes, feed the baby, let the dogs out, pick up the living room, wash my face, check on the children and make sure the alarm is set and the doors are locked. Until next time.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Night time prayers

So, my girls always say a prayer before bed. Katie is just now wanting to participate. For a long time, she would just listen and not add anything. Audrey gets very creative and has been known to pray for EVERYTHING! Here's an example from last night: "Thank you God for this beautiful day and for letting me spend time with my family. And thank you for my Daddy 'cause he's handsome, and thank you for keeping him safe at work and for helping him get the bad guys and find the horses (another story) and thank you too for all the beautiful flowers, and..." at this point Katie interrupts the prayer with a hearty rendition of the world's funniest song made up by a 2 yr. old that goes, "Shake your booty, doodie." (insert maniacal 2 yr. old laughter here) Audrey, who is very upset that she has been interrupted, has to start all over at the beginning of her prayer. Mommy is patiently waiting with her eyes closed and trying to ignore Katie's singing. So, start again, also pray for the park that we played at, for all the horses and puppies and kitties in the world and God Bless Grandma, Grandpa, Nana and Papa, and for her school...Katie once again interjects with "Shake your booty, doodie". (more laughter). Audrey starts over again. Mommy fights the urge to scream, "Hurry UP!" More prayers for the grass and the trees and flowers and rainbows and her teacher (anyone else notice who is missing from this prayer? Mommy?) and the good cookies she had and thank you for her bike and her birthday and her helmet...Mommy is clearing her throat in a clear effort to move this along a little while Katie is whispering "Shake your booty, doodie." FINALLY Audrey says Amen. Katie has something to say too. "Dear God, shake your booty, doodie. Amen" Mommy has to leave the room before bursting into laughter.

Do you see why I'm going insane?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

My baby is 5!

I can't believe she's 5. I say this every year on her birthday. It's just amazing to me that I have had kids for 5 years now. She was hilarious. It's been very cold here this weekend. We got some snow Friday night and then Saturday morning it was in the low 30's. She was supposed to have a soccer game that morning so we bundled her up and Vince took her with the agreement that I would bring her present in from the garage and cover it up in the living room so that when she got home it would be ready. Her coach called about 15 minutes after Vince and Audrey left to say that the game had been canceled, so they came home. When she walked in, she saw this big lump in the living room covered with a blanket. She just started grinning! She thought it was a bunch of balls, but when she pulled the blanket off, she saw her new bike! It even has a basket, handlebar streamers and a bell. She went bonkers! We had to take it for a spin around the block, so off we set--me in my shorts and flip-flops--for her first ride. She was so cute. Ringing her bell and pointing out any other kids bikes along the way and saying that hers was prettier. It was REALLY cold, so by the time we got home we had some hot chocolate and just parked the bike where she could sit on it inside. To say that she loves this bike is an understatement. We went out and got her a helmet and knee and elbow pads, courtesy of Nana and Papa. She picked out the pink Barbie one of course. Sometimes she's such a girl! She rode her bike to school today. OMG! She was sooo funny. Ringing her bell when she would see her classmates and putting on a show for everyone. They had no school Monday for Native American Day so she was really excited to get to school today. As soon as she got up she was asking if it was time to go. She said that the morning class lasts too long. There's a girl at Audrey's school that is a handful. Audrey says that this girl can't be her friend until she starts behaving at school. She got in the car the other day after school and announced that she told this girl that if she wanted to be her friend she needed to be nicer in school, and at the end of the day this girl had been nice enough to be put back on the list of friends. Audrey said she straightened her out! Little Queen Bee. She is 5 going on 15 I swear. She keeps telling us that she is a big girl now. We had a talk about Bratz dolls and I told her they were too mature and for big girls. She explained in a very exasperated voice that she WAS a big girl. Like, HELLLOO!

Katie has a new thing that she says. When I call her one of her pet names, like "Katie Bear" or "Sugar Booger" she corrects me and says, "No. I'm Daddy's Katie Bear or Daddy's Sugar Booger." She really loves her Daddy. Sometimes it's so frustrating because I'm the one who is here doing everything for them and he gets all the glory. I will just have to wait until they are grown and have kids of their own to be appreciated. I know that's when I realized how much my mother did for me growing up. One of the girls made a mess last night and I told Audrey to get a napkin and clean it up to which she replied, "Why should I have to do it? You're the cleaner around here." I guess I know where I stand now.

Vince and I have really been enjoying the YMCA here. I have still been going to the Body Sculpt class (except today since Katie slept until 9:30) and have added the spinning class. I don't know how many of you have ever tried spinning, but it really isn't for the faint of heart! The first time I really had a hard time. It was all I could do to just keep pedaling. I wanted to quit, but I didn't. The instructor is very nice and was really supportive so I'll try it a few more times to see if it gets any better. My rear really was sore, not for lack of cushion, but probably just because I sat more than I was supposed to. They do a lot of standing while pedaling. They do. Not we do. Sorry, Dad. I may not have picked up the bike gene. He just got through riding over 300 miles in 2 days. He's nuts! Well, I should go for now. I just looked up the Y schedule and they have a Body Sculpt class tonight too. Yay!! Vince is going to watch the kids so I can go.

Oh, and watch out Martha Stewart. I made a pillowcase at sewing class the other night. It was fun. All the women in there are beginners and it's really funny to see us all trying to sew squares. We are all a little intimidated by the machines. Until next time...

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


I swear, this has not been my week and it's only Wednesday. I wonder how many more clueless moments I can have. Sunday, I noticed that the fridge was not very cool but thought nothing of it. Monday late afternoon, Audrey went to get a popsicle out of the freezer and it wasn't frozen at all. So, I looked at the stuff in there and a lot of it was starting to thaw. Crap. I checked to make sure it was plugged in. I flipped the breaker just to make sure it hadn't popped. Nothing. So I called Sears, where we bought the thing 2 short years ago. They can't send anyone until Friday. I called some other places in the phone book, but everyone was already gone for the day. I decided that the stuff in the fridge would probably be okay for another night, but the frozen stuff would have to go out to the garage in the box freezer. I gathered everything up into bags and carry it out there only to realize that the big freezer has been unplugged for who knows how long. Everything in it was rotten. Stunk to high heaven. Great. So I get that cleaned out and all the stuff thrown out, including the things that had thawed and would not be able to be re-frozen from the little freezer. The next day I had a guy come out in the afternoon to fix my fridge. He comes in, I tell him that we have had a problem with the fan seizing once before and he says that it probably seized again. Then he opens the door and goes, "Oh, here's your problem. It's turned off." Now, how stupid do I feel? I didn't even know that you could turn it off. I knew you could adjust the temperature, but to turn it all the way off? Who turns their refrigerator off? Why not just unplug it if you're not going to use it? DUH! So, he turned it back on for me and waited to make sure that it was going to work fine. Then he charged me $45. He did take $20 off the regular price since he didn't have to actually do anything. I figure one of the kids was messing with the controls. I showed it to them and threatened them to within an inch of their lives not to even look at it again. So, I'm out $45 plus all the food I had to throw out, which was quite a bit of stuff. As if I didn't feel stupid enough, we met some friends at the park today and as I was getting our junk out and holding kids and juggling lunch I locked my keys in the car. UGH!!!! It was in the 50's. I had already gotten the kid's coats out, but mine was locked in there, along with my phone, the drinks and Sam's socks in the diaper bag. So, I borrowed Heidi's (Audrey thinks her name is Tiny) phone to call State Farm and get a locksmith out to open the darn thing. I about froze to death by the time he came. Another $45 later and I was a happy (and warm) woman. State Farm will reimburse me for the locksmith, but can they also pay for my lobotomy?

This morning I went back to Body Torture class. This time we worked our arms, abs, gluts, and chest. And we did some inner and outer thigh stuff. The inner thigh was hilarious. She had us put one of those big exercise balls between our knees while we were laying on our back and then we squeezed it while we were doing crunches. Except they were laughing at me because I was wearing pants and when I would try to squeeze the ball, it would squirt out and go flying. She told me maybe I should wear shorts next time. I told her if she would bring the blindfolds, I would bring on the shorts. And Sam! I tell ya, that kid can eat! I nursed him before we left, at around 8:45 that morning. In the hour that he was in the nursery, he had 2 bottles. Then we went directly to the park for our lunch playdate and he nursed again. So, in the course of 3 hours, he ate 4 times. He definitely is related to me. I'm not looking forward to my grocery bills when he gets older. Between me, Vince, and Bruiser, we will have to take out a second mortgage just to eat.

Wish me luck that I have no more blonde moments this week. I can't afford it!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


I swear kids say the funniest things and it's usually a real saying that they've just misunderstood or misinterpreted. Today she told me, "Mom--heads, butts." It took me a few times of her saying this before I realized she was meaning to say "heads-up". LOL! I told her what the real saying was and she didn't believe me. I'm already ancient enough to my children to not know what I'm talking about. I thought I had a few years yet before that kicked in. Also, the other day after church she walked to the car and said "What a glorious day!" What time period are we in? The Victorian Era? The day before that after the soccer game the coach gave the players all trophies with their names on them. Audrey declared, "My first trophy. See how it shines." What a hoot!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Busy week

When we first moved here, I had quite a few pity parties for myself because we didn't know anyone and I was lonely, missing my friends from Arkansas. Now I'm trying to find the time to slow down! Be careful what you wish for, right? We have been running and running it seems. I haven't needed a planner since I started my gig as full-time mom. Or maybe I needed one, but just didn't carry one! Now, my phone is my lifeline. I swear if I didn't have that calendar that bings at me to remind me of things I would never make it anywhere! Poor Sam is the one that suffers for our schedule. He'll be peacefully taking a nap in his bed and be roused by me because I have to pick up Audrey from pre-school or run to the store or whatever. I hate that he never seems to get a full nap in all at once, but only catches his sleep in snitches here and there. He may just have to learn to adapt.

Sam sure is a great kid regardless of all our scheduling issues. He's usually just so happy and easy to be with. I am so in love! Except for this morning. I taught Joy School this morning. I think I told you all about that. It's kind of a co-op pre-school that Audrey is doing with some kids that we have met. We do this on Monday mornings from 9-11:30. Actually I would have had it easy if Sam hadn't been extremely fussy this morning. I decided to have school at the USFS office where Vince works (except he's in Arkansas for court). One of the ladies there did a wildlife program for us and then Smokey Bear came to visit. Once the kids saw Smokey, it was all over for anyone else. They only had eyes for the bear! Audrey told all of them, "My dad works with Smokey!" The kids were duly impressed. So, I really didn't have to do that much work, but Sam cried almost the whole time. I couldn't just let him scream because there were people working in all the offices around the conference room where we were based. I'm sure some of those kids got an eyeful of booby because Sam wasn't happy with the bottle and as much as I tried to be discreet with a blanket over me, it's hard to walk around and teach 7 five year olds while holding an 18 pound kid in one arm who is wiggling and doing his best to dislodge said blanket. I may have to have a chat with some of the other moms!

Katie was excited that she got to stay for Joy School today. Usually, she just goes with me to drop Audrey off. She wants so badly to be able to do some of the things that her sister does. When she found out that she got to stay, her eyes lit up and she started yelling, "Yay!!" She's so frickin' cute sometimes I just want to eat her up! I wish that she could stay this age. Except be potty-trained and not so sassy. Oh, and able to do more stuff for herself. I guess I don't want her to stay this age! She cut her own hair the other day. I walked away for 2 seconds--2 seconds! That was all she needed. Luckily, she was very random and doesn't yet have a good feel for how to hold the scissors at the right angle for maximum hair-cutting efficiency. She did manage to get a couple chunks pretty short, but if her hair is down, they kinda blend. She won't be wearing any ponytails for a while! Geez. I say parenting is kinda like being a prison guard. You can't show weakness and you have to keep your eyes on them EVERY second or they will turn on you.

Vince is trying to brainwash my children. Sunday is football day at our house. Okay, it's church AND football day at our house. Last week the Redskins played the Cowboys, which--FYI-- is a huge rivalry for all you non-football fans. Vince is a die-hard Redskins fan and I love the Cowboys. We wore our football jerseys to church. Don't screw up your face like that! Our church is casual and fun. We were quite a hit and apparently started a trend since I saw some other people wearing jerseys this week. Anyway, his silly team beat my team. Who cares, we still rule! So, now he has his girls chanting, "Redskins, Redskins, Redskins!" Katie this morning saw a commercial that showed the Redskins and she started yelling, "Go, Raay-kins!" The things I put up with around here! Also, I had to get onto her the other day and it really upset her. She was crying and said in her little hitching voice, "I want my Daddy." She tells him he's the "bess" and that Mommy is just "the same". I'm not sure what that means, but she says it in a derogatory way. I tell ya, he really has them snowed. Just wait and see who's the best when they are teenagers and Daddy won't want to let them out of the house wearing anything less than a full suit of armor and flanked by big, fully armed bodyguards--if he lets them out at all! At least I have Sam in my corner for now. I have a feeling that as soon as he is a little less pre-occupied with boobs (oh, wait--he's Vince's son. Never mind.) he may be more persuadable.

So, I haven't been back to the YMCA yet, except to take the girls swimming. I was still feeling pretty hinky when I got up Friday morning. Couldn't make the spinning class-darn. This morning I was in Joy School, so couldn't make the Body Torture class either. I'm still a little sore today too, but at least I can sit and stand without the aid of a winch. I'm gonna try to go on Wednesday. I think I may have hurt myself. Not from the class, but from the after-effects. I was so sore that I would clench and tense up when I had to sit down or anything. I think that by doing that I injured myself. I'll just have to wait and see if it's just soreness or a real problem.

Well, I think this is long enough for now. Much love from the frozen tundra!

Thursday, October 2, 2008


I'm broken and bruised but alive. There are some moments when I wish I was dead. I don't think there is a muscle in my body that does not ache. I lost count of how many squats we did when I started to see spots. On top of that I started feeling horrible yesterday too. I thought I just pushed myself too hard at the class. Nope, I have some sort of stomach bug. Yeah!! So on top of waddling around like I'm 12 months pregnant, I get to deal with feeling like poo. The instructor said I did well for my first go and that she wanted to see me at spinning class Friday morning. I think my maniacal laughter may have hurt her feelings.

To top all that off, Sam had the absolute worst diaper blowout I have ever seen. I was sitting on the couch with him on my lap and I heard him fill his diaper. I waited to see if he had finished when I looked down and noticed poop all over his feet. I picked him up and realized that most of the poo had run out of the diaper and between my legs so that I was sitting in a giant mess. I didn't even know where to start! By the time we were through, I had poop literally from my hands to my feet, on my couch and carpet, all over Sam and very little in the diaper. I decided to just throw him in the bath. Well, of course he has outgrown his baby tub already, so I have to bathe him in the big tub and lean over the side. Which means that I have to kneel. Not so easy with these sore legs today.

Speaking of outgrowing things, I had to switch Sam from his infant seat to a bigger seat. He still has to face backwards for another 8 months, but at least I won't have to try to haul around an almost 18 pound kid sitting in a 10 pound seat. He weighs more than Katie with all that! Even my strapping husband was starting to complain. The poor girls got pushed to the back seat since I can't fit all 3 of them in the middle. Katie was delighted. Audrey was less than enthusiastic. I think that was mainly because it wasn't her idea. She likes to be in charge. But she'll get over it. Anyway, I'm gonna hobble over to Sam since he's decided he wants to eat AGAIN! I'll let you know if I make to spinning class. LOL!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

If I make it through this day...

This time I'm not saying "If I make it through this day" because of my children! Wow. I've signed up at our local YMCA and let some of the other mommies talk me into doing a class called body sculpt. I do have to note that these other mommies are much more in shape than I am. (That's not really saying much at this point). One lady said that on Monday they did 145 squats. My mind can't even process that many squats. That's like saying a billion dollars. It's too much to fathom! My husband is so excited that I have finally joined in any type of exercise. He has reminded me many times last night and this morning. So. If I make it through this day alive, maybe I'll go back to the class on Monday. Maybe I'll be able to lift my arms high enough to reach the keyboard-how about that? Let's take this really slowly!

This YMCA also has racquetball courts, but since I haven't played since Audrey was born--5 years and 50 pounds ago--I will probably avoid those for a while. I don't want to totally embarrass myself. I know that hasn't seemed to stop me in the past. Maybe I'm getting more self-conscious in my old age.

I am taking a beginning sewing class soon. I have been able to use my machine for a few very simple things like a blanket for Katie, but recently I have been wanting to make more things. I bought a dress pattern and material so I could make Audrey's Halloween costume. I opened the "Sew Simple" pattern and realized I didn't remember as much as I thought I did from high school home ec class. I'm sure some quite handy people could whip this out with their eyes closed, but I realized that in order not to mess up the pattern or the material, I'd better call for backup. Since Rachel, my friend who is THE go-to handy mom, doesn't live a mile away anymore I signed up for this class. Should be fun. I'm really excited. Never thought I would say that! More excited to sew than to do 145 squats, that's for damn sure.

Well, I need to get my rear in gear and get ready (ha!) for my body torture class. Wish me luck and a cold beer please!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


I've always considered myself to be pretty smart. Not a genius, but maybe a little above the curve. Leave it to Audrey to ask the most insane, difficult questions that have ever been asked to make me feel a little like Patrick Starfish. You know that character from Spongebob? He's the one with the blank stare and the drool hanging out of the corner of his mouth. That's me on a daily basis. My pat answer is quickly becoming, "well, honey, because God wanted it that way." I think that's a pretty good answer. That way she can't research my solution!

Audrey does this thing we call Joy school with 6 other kids on Monday mornings. It's at a different kid's house each week and it's just something that some moms decided to do together. There's no curriculum or anything. It's basically a craft project with a lesson thrown in if you want. Usually she rides with her friend Rachel. Rachel's mom called me the other day to tell me something Audrey said to her. Uh-oh. Mindy just laughed and said that they had been running a little late to Joy school and she told the girls this. The girls got a little upset and thought that they would miss something, so Mindy told them it would be okay if they were just a little late. Audrey piped in with, "No, it's not. Learning waits for no one." Mindy said she couldn't think of a response to that. She told me that she thought Audrey was pretty smart. Yeah, I get those little tidbits that leave me speechless on a daily basis. And I'm not a speechless kind of person. I've got all kinds of speeches. This afternoon on the way to school, Audrey asked why daddy had been building some targets. I told her it was so he could shoot at them. Of course she asked why. I said so that he could practice with his gun in case he needed to protect himself or someone else someday. She said "yeah, cause a strong man stands up for himself, but a stronger man stands up for others." Now, I'm sure she heard this on a movie or something, but for her to put that saying together with that situation? I don't know, maybe I'm biased, but I think that's pretty darn smart. Or at least funny.

I'm sure that I could go on about how brilliant my children are, but I really want you all to keep reading this so I'll stop for now. Be ready for my next post "my kids are smarter than yours". Just kidding!

I really should be outside finishing the plastic privacy weaving because my dogs are definitely NOT smarter than your dogs. Beagles have very big hearts, but that leaves only so much room for brains. Geez! The plastic things have helped a little bit with the barking, but the really good thing is that it drives her dogs NUTS and then they try to jump the fence. Don't think that I don't have my camera out for that! The other day I was going out to feed my boys and she was standing on her back porch which is basically an overlook into our yard. Her dogs saw me and tried to jump the fence. She yelled at them and I just smiled and waved at her. She didn't wave or anything. She must just be a very unhappy person. I don't understand it. But anyway, I'll just continue to take the high road and be happy and she can wallow in her misery. I don't care. As long as we continue to do everything we can to be good and cooperative neighbors I don't think she has a leg to stand on legally. And I'm done talking about her.

Gotta go get Audrey from school. Love y'all!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Thank you Jesus!

So, I met someone yesterday who made me thank God for my life! Sometimes I get so caught up in the negative. Griping about anything and everything is easier I guess than focusing on the good things in life. This lady has 3 kids of her own and just inherited her brother's 13 week old triplets. Her brother is in Iraq and I guess his wife dropped off her babies when they were 5 days old so she could go to the grocery store. She never came back! Can you imagine? On top of that her father-in-law and father, who both live with her and her family, are elderly and not in good health and she just found out that her mother has cancer. When she walked away, another mother came up to me and said, "Wow. I thought my life was crazy." It just made me think about the blessings that I have been given and how generally easy my life is compared to others. God is good.

On another note, Audrey tries her best to make life interesting each and every day. Today before the soccer game, they had their pictures taken. I can't wait to see them because she is pouting in all of them! She refused to be in a good mood. The photographer finally got fed up and said she thought she got some decent ones and it was time for her to move on. Usually when the camera comes out, she is a ham and a half. I guess she just felt like changing things up. Then, during the game, she just was not paying attention. It drives me crazy! All the other parents cracked up when I shouted to her, "Audrey, QUIT PICKING YOUR NOSE AND GET THE BALL!!!" Seriously, I can only take so much! I know, I know. The point is for her to have fun...blah, blah.

I don't know how many of you have seen the movie Kung Fu Panda, but it has quickly become one of our family favorites. It is hilarious! This story will only make sense if you have seen it. Katie was talking in her sleep the other night. When we woke up I told her that and asked her what she was dreaming about. She said in her little groggy voice, "I was dreaming about noodles." I haven't laughed that hard in a while.

Well, I should go put the girls to bed so I suppose I will log off now. As my mom used to tell us at bedtime--see you later, see you tomorrow.

Friday, September 19, 2008

A funny from Audrey and a new hobby for Mommy

Audrey said something funny at dinner tonight. She asked me when I was little what I wanted to be when I grew up. I told her I had wanted to be a movie star to which she replied, "Did you ever do that?" Uh, I think not, honey!

So, since everyone keeps asking me why I don't have a blog I finally decided that it would be easier to keep you all updated with this instead of trying to e-mail all of you occasionally. Also, there may be less chance of me repeating myself if I can go back and read what I wrote last. I'm famous for telling the same stories over and over. Maybe I can cut back on that a little with my blog! So, from now on, I will try to keep this updated and filled with tidbits from this crazy life (the straight-jacket express). Just let me know if you'd rather receive e-mails instead of having to check this periodically and I will try to update you that way.