Friday, August 31, 2007

When spazz things happen to good people- OR- Third time's a charm

Anna started a new school year off in a new school due to rezoning, and though this school is only 2 years old and is very nice (WITH air conditioning, I might add) I had my doubts. You see, not to sound like a snob but this school is on "the wrong side of the tracks". This means a rougher 'hood and rougher kids. I was a bit worried that Anna might not know how to interact with kids that have to fend for themselves a lot, and I was worried that the tougher kids might take advantage of Anna's lack of "street smarts".

It's been a week and so far she loves it. She loves her teacher and the kids in her class, and come to find out that this school gets the best of the best as far as teachers in the district due to the need for teachers with the abilities to deal with the type of situations that might arise in this type of neighborhood.

Anna was already doing really well in kindergarten with her reading, and though I had some slight worries that she would forget what she had learned over the summer she surprised me by taking the initiative and reading on her own. I could hear her reading in her room, and we read after breakfast. :)

That being said, Anna is expected to bring home a new book everyday, and everyday she has to read this book three times and the people she reads to have to sign a slip each time she reads. She can bring the book back in when she is done with it, even if it's a few days later, but they are encouraging the kids to bring the book back the very next day.

Yesterday she read her book to me after school, then read to her dad after dinner. When I reminded her that she had to read the book a 3rd time, she sighed but dove right back into it.

Only this time, obviously bored with the book she decided to spice things up a bit by reading Biscuit Wins a Prize with a southern accent. Good Lord, I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. When I say southern accent, think Foghorn Leghorn heavily laced with a shot each of Yosemite Sam, and Forrest Gump. Now add a dash of Christopher Walken.

These lines:

Oh, Biscuit! It's not time to roll over.

Woof, woof!

suddenly turned into this:

Ough, Beeass-kit.............................. Eet's nawt tahhm to rowel ovah!

Woaf, woaf!

When we were done howling, and Anna was done giggling, wiping back tears I said I wished I had gotten that on video. "Me too, mom! Then you could have put it on yer blawg!"

She's already a legend... in her own mind. ;)

Thursday, August 30, 2007

How to survive life in a cubicle: A book review

I often wonder what my life would be like if I worked in an office... I am a stay-at-home-mom but I actually don't think my life would be all that different. I mean I do have deadlines, demanding bosses, all vacation time must be approved months in advance, and despite many, many promises I have yet to receive a raise. Oh yeah, and the benefits package is complete pooh- pun intended.

I am always amazed at the people who can manage to work so hard in an office environment yet find the time to blog, and if it were me... this is what my day would be like:

Anyway, I was recently presented with the opportunity to receive books for free (Collins, an Imprint of HaperCollins Publishers), no strings attached except for reviews on the books that I enjoyed reading. Since school started a week ago I decided that since I have only one ankle biter at home, I might have a little extra time on my hands. Besides pondering what I want to be when my kids grow up, I thought I would use this time to catch up on a little reading!

Cube Monkeys: A Handbook for Surviving the Office Jungle
is the first book I have read for review, and considering I just watched one of my all time favorite movies, choosing this book to review was a hilarious coincidence.

Cube Monkeys covers all the bases to coping with life in cubicle hell, such as:

New twists on dodging the bullet for a day and Calling In Sick... "I can't stop the ringing in my ears, so I can't hear what you're saying. If it's okay I take today off, let me know. Wait, I can't hear you. I know, if it's okay I take a sick day, just don't say anything. Did you say anything? I'm just going to hang up. Is that okay? If it's..."

The origins of the Neck Noose and what your office Wardrobe says about you... "Beige two-piece business suit: Smart and highly practical, these suits can go from office to hamper back to the office because you didn't have time to go to the cleaners after [your child] got his head stuck in a bait bucket. They usually have rich textures and subtle patterns- perfect for camouflaging baby vomit."

10 suitable greetings for when you'd rather say "Leave me alone!": " 'Give me just a second." Close your eyes and say softly to yourself,"It's okay to ask coworkers for money, it's okay to ask coworkers for money...' " And, " 'I'm too busy picturing you naked to talk to you right now.' "

This book contains many other hilarious sections such as:

Boss-to-English Translator

Fake Doctors Notes

Game: Blame The Temp

Defusing The Loaded Question

Hide And Seek: Advanced Avoidance Techniques for the 4:59 PM Assignment

Time Killers: How To Look Busy Even When You Are Not

So if you are looking for The Survivor's Guide To Not Going Postal , this book is sure to give you a laugh- and on the bad days at least good chuckle- when you start to feel those neutral burlap covered cubicle walls closing in.

After all, you don't really want to turn into this guy, do you?

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Oh yeah? Anna and Emma-isms

***Scroll down for Wordless Wednesday***
Like my new header? I made it yesterday, from scratch in Photoshop.... Squeeee! Can you tell I am ready for fall? Oh, back on topic. :)

Lately, Emma has taken to saying "Oh yeeeeeahhhhhh" when she puts her sunglasses on in the car, like she is feeling super fine and hecka cool. What a character. We have no idea where she got this from.

Also, when Anna feels as though we are teasing her- which lately involves us singing High School Musical 2, not so much because we are teasing... you can't help but utter and mimic the sounds you are being brainwashed with 2 times a week can you? Yes, John and I do tend to burst into song at inappropriate moments, much like a musical. ;)

Anywho, Anna has started saying to us at such times (almost always with a raised eyebrow, sometimes a crooked smile),"Don't make me..."- as in "Don't make me hurt you."

That she gets from me.

Emma has gotten a little more shy recently, and has taken to repeating this phrase when she too feels embarrassed by the actions of her parents:
Emma, I love you. :)

Don't make me.

Yesterday, Anna enjoyed a not so relaxing round of The Sims 2. The game has little rules and regulations such as only being able to place dishwashers under regular counters and not the bar height kind, or not being able to delete an object that a Sim is currently using or is about to use. Anna became quite frustrated with the counter situation, and asked me over to help. On a side note, we rarely play The Sims 2 together anymore because we usually fight about decorating the houses and what a Sim should look loike when creating a Sim.

So, yesterday I put my blog header making on pause and got up to help her. Betcha can't guess what happened next? Ah- yeeeah. Because she had a hard time trying to explain exactly what she needed and wanted, she became very frustrated. To the point of tears.

"Ya know, this is why we don't play anymore. Figure out what you want... then let me know. I'll be over here."

Anna starts doing what annoys me the most... regularly irregular and high pitched "Harrrumphing". Accompanied by arm crossing and glaring in my general direction, with the occasional eye or nose rub.

"It's not my fault you are having problems with the game, I didn't make the game and all of it's funny little rules... so don't get mad at me. It's not my fault."

1.34 seconds go by and she has this to say, "YES it IS your fault! You're the ONE who DECIDED to buy the GAME!"

I couldn't help but laugh, which didn't help the situation at all. "That's like saying that it's my fault that you are acting this way because I'm the one that made and gave birth to you."

No comment, she just gives me the raised eyebrow, through the part her in hair that hangs over her face.

She has a point.

Ack, we are so screwed. I told my sis while visiting that I believe that when the girls start puberty I'll be hiding Prozac in their mashed potatoes. Or mine.

(Or maybe in a balled up piece of cheese or bread?)

'Taters, anyone?

Wordless Wednesday- Playing House and Dress Up

Tuesday, August 28, 2007


I was really surprised about the range of emotion that I received yesterday in comments... and I just wanted to say thank you to each and every one of you who took the time to comment about the crisis my family is going through.

This is s difficult situation to be in. Yesterday I mentioned that I can hold a grudge, and honestly... I can be a little hard hearted at times. Having grown up the way I did I realize that my own reactions and emotions can be a little extreme, and this is why I tend to look for examples around me as to what a NORMAL reaction might be.

My first instinct (as I said in the original post) was to basically crush the MIL- body and spirit- after what she did to Anna. I wanted to hurt her so bad. I was so angry and protective of Anna when the MIL threw the water in Anna's face that I wouldn't even let the MIL touch her. The MIL kept saying over and over"You're OK" to Anna and I yelled as I shoved her aside, "Yeah, she's FINE!". I wanted to pummel her with my fists and at the very least my words, but my first priority was to see to my child. I was so angry that the MIL took the opportunity to hurt her own flesh and blood, and it was conveniently done while neither John or I was looking.

While helping Anna get her dry clothes (Anna, the big girl that she is, insisted on having alone time to dress herself), I discussed with John's cousin's wife what I WOULD do to her when I went outside. My options were to be childish like her and dump a bucketful of water over her head, curse her out, and then to ask her if she would like to hold Emma's head under the water next- in the kiddie pool.

As I looked out the porch window before Anna and I went back outside, I could see the MIL drawing into herself... and though she will probably never admit it, I could see that she realized she had made a grave mistake. I sat Anna down with me on the porch and cuddled her, then told her that I didn't want her anywhere near her grandmother, to stay away from her. "Nana did something that was very wrong, do not go near her at all... I just don't know what she will do next." With wide eyes, Anna nodded... then went outside with me.

To avoid what would surely end in me being arrested for assault, I steered clear of the MIL. I feel bad now in a way for not having said anything in my child's defense... but if I had to do it all over again I don't know if I would do much differently, because as I told the MIL's sister a few days ago...

I bit my tongue BIG TIME on this situation and DIDN'T thrash her and humiliate her like I wanted too because frankly, she had humiliated herself enough as it was. I could see it since she didn't utter a word to anyone, even when she left with the BIL.

Also, I knew at the time that I probably would go nuclear and not be able to control myself. Getting thrown in the slammer for possibly assaulting (in one way or another) the MIL wouldn't have done my children any good, or me for that matter. the fact that I even have that in me scared me, so I did what I could do- which was discussing the situation with Anna the next day, and John and I agreeing that she couldn't see the kids anymore unless she was supervised every second... and keeping my distance from that woman.

What will be interesting is what happens in the next weeks. The MIL's birthday is coming up and I told John that I am SURE that she will be trying to get back into our good graces purely for selfish reasons: she doesn't want to be alone on her 61st birthday. Well, I'm sorry, that's not going to happen.

I told John this morning about the overwhelming response that she shouldn't be allowed to see the kids anymore and I realized I hadn't really asked John his opinion though I had discussed this with Anna, and we hadn't discussed how I felt either. John told me he is gong to try to read your comments today because he is really interested in reading your responses. He also said that if he was deciding on his own he wouldn't let her see the kids at all, he would wait as long as possible before letting her near our kids again... but he knows that he can be hard hearted sometimes, so he feels that the decision that he and I came to is a good one. Lets let Anna decide when she is ready to see her. Not putting too much pressure on the kid but letting her know if and when she is ready to see her grandmother, we would call her and tell her that she could come over for a supervised visit.

I know I have a hard heart about things too so knowing that I wasn't the only one who wanted nothing more than to be done with her forever, now I don't feel so bad. Also knowing that my husband feels the same way I do is a comfort. I know that if he felt strongly enough, John would firmly tell me that in no way would she ever see our kids again so he isn't as "hard hearted" as he thinks. :) I think it's good to know that sometimes both of us can be extremists, but in this instance we are waiting to see how Anna is going to respond.

I don't know if never seeing her grandmother again is the answer, but I definitely know that being with her alone isn't an option. AT ALL.

If it were me, my mother would have made me see my grandmother, and probably would have made the incident somehow my fault... twisting things around to make it sound like it was my fault and that I was a bad person for not wanting to see her.

Though I would never do that to Anna, in contrast I am letting her know that she has a voice, an opinion. She has choices. On the other hand, I am responsible to make sure that my 6 year old is making an appropriate decision. We don't want to tell Anna that she isn't allowed to see the MIL (it's not like she killed anyone, for Pete's sake), and risk Anna being angry with us later for not letting her see her grandmother. On the other hand we have to do what is safe for our kids... which could be supervised visits, depending on how the MIL reacts. We are trying to judge the situation, and amend the rules so that they are appropriate for the situation.

I think John and I both know that the underlying thought here is that what the MIL did was wrong, and the thing that bothers us the most is that we KNOW the MIL would NEVER do something like this to Emma- or least she wouldn't do this to Emma until she too has fallen out of favor when she gets older... which makes the situation even more confusing. BUT we are trying to find a balance in this situation that is appropriate.

A lot of what will happen next will depend on the MIL. There is a remote possibility that the sky will open up and the angels will sing... and she will receive divine intervention, and realize how much she hurt her granddaughter. And realize that she will have to do a lot to regain Anna's and our trust- if ever. But I seriously doubt this will happen. She'll do what she always does which is to avoid confrontation in hopes that we will eventually act like nothing happened. Not this time.

So far the MIL has been a selfish cow. She hasn't shown any interest in Anna's feelings and hasn't attempted once to regain trust. If I had been an idiot like that, I would have been over the next day bearing gifts and apologies... doing whatever it took.

It's been 3 weeks today since the MIL hurt Anna and not a single word. She SAYS she apologized, and Anna says she remembers the MIL apologizing... and it's possible that I didn't hear the apology over the blood pounding in my ears, but I do not remember an apology coming out of the MIL's mouth. The fact that she has made no attempt at all is making things worse for the MIL and my kids. It's not looking good. She has gone this far to avoid seeing both of her grandkids because she doesn't want to admit she has done something very hurtful. 3 whole weeks and she only lives 3 blocks away from us.

3 whole weeks and Anna hasn't asked to see her either.

*sigh* The topic of the MIL's birthday should be interesting. Like I said though... if the MIL continues to act ignorant, she wont be able to see the kids at all.

Thanks for letting me ramble on, trying to explain myself a little better. In the end though, even if Anna never sees her again, I hope that by my own actions I can help my daughter heal- meaning not talking about the situationout of anger in front of Anna anymore. And my point yesterday is that you don't have to reconcile with a person to forgive them. You don't have to be best buddies with someone in order to forgive and move on with your life. I'm not forcing my child to see the person that hurt her, I'm not even forcing forgiveness... I'm just giving her another option. BUT I am giving my child the opportunity to forgive if she can, and IF my MIL can decide to act right, SHE will have an opportunity to make things right with her granddaughter.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Oh, the hypocrisy!

***This post has religious undertones... reader beware***

Yesterday we were out and about getting a few things and a thought occurred to me: How do I help my child forgive? I don't know if you have noticed this or not but I can hold a grudge. Shocking, I know!

It's no secret that we have been slacking in the church going department. I know my kids are missing out on something important and I am partially to blame. I'd like to think that I am teaching my kids the fundamentals of life.

But am I?

Regardless of faith and denomination, there are some things that I think parents should teach their children. But this is all my opinion, so cut me a little slack... m'kay? ;)

IMHO, one of the things that parents should teach their children is the concept forgiveness. This is where things get a little sticky for me. I have been burned so many times in my life that I am slow to forgive. It takes me a while. SOMETIMES years. So what exactly should I tell my kids?

*** From a Biblical standpoint, though love is mentioned a lot and is considered a top priority, forgiveness is crucial to having a relationship with God and man. ***

As a child I was brought up to believe that my feelings, thoughts and opinions didn't matter or amount to much. I want so much more for my children, so how can I possibly tell them that they HAVE to forgive? Right now. This very minute.

My brain understands the fundamentals of forgiveness, but my heart aches when my children have been hurt and wronged. How can I explain to my kids that they need to forgive when I struggle on a daily basis? And when my words are so poisoned with anger?

Most recently, the MIL threw a sand pail of water- full force- in the face of her 6 year old granddaughter, without Anna even knowing that she was behind her, and without warning. As you can imagine, Anna has lost all faith and trust in her grandmother.

John's mother obviously was very upset when she learned that she wouldn't be watching the kids while I was gone on my recent trip. The Saturday before my trip (and after the water incident), John and his mother just happened to be working at the hospital they bother work at. The MIL called John at his desk and asked him what time she needed to be at the house on Friday. John told her that he was going to take both days off, and that she wouldn't be needed to stay home with the kids. When she asked him why, he replied that Anna said she wanted her dad home those days.

"I guess she is still mad at me, " she said.

"Yes, "John said, "She IS only 6 years old." Then he told her that he had to go, he had a lot of work to do.

It wouldn't surprise me at all if she thought that her actions were minor and that she couldn't possibly understand why Anna would be so upset. In fact this is exactly what has happened in the past when she left Anna in a locked car on a 90+ degree day, or the time she let Anna walk on a 10 foot incline of jagged rocks at the river front, or the time I came home to find Emma wrapping a cord from the blinds around her neck for almost a whole minute while the MIL watched TV in my living room... completely oblivious. In each instance she either couldn't understand why I was so upset or lied about what happened to save face.

However, what is most shocking? The MIL- the only grandparent my kids have left since my mother has been eliminated for reasons of insanity- has not bothered to call, visit, or reassure her grandchildren in almost 3 weeks (3 weeks tomorrow). No contact of any sort, nothing. This is doing nothing to boost Anna's fallen faith. In fact, it is only fostering her sense of hurt and complacency.

What struck me about this whole incident is that by continuing to discuss our anger and frustration- over the fact that the MIL is so childish that she cannot possibly see why Anna would be so upset, and the fact that she has decided that her typical response of avoidance in hopes that the situation will mend itself is at all appropriate here- is [possibly] making things worse for Anna.

Gah, I guess that means I have to change. Lead by example right? I have to start taming my tongue and letting anger go. Which is very difficult in this particular circumstance... since we traveled a similar road with John's dad.

I don't want to ever give my kids the idea or feeling that their ideas and opinions don't matter.
But there has to be a transition between feeling the hurt and mending, and this is where forgiveness comes in. I think Anna is old and smart enough to understand that forgiveness means showing mercy for others, but it also means allowing yourself to heal. You can't heal if you let the battery acid of bitterness continue to pour over open wounds.

John and I had a short a cryptic talk in the car, where I told him my opinion... and he agreed.

So, yesterday after we got home, I had a brief talk with Anna. I explained that when she was ready to see her nana again to let me know and I would call the MIL and tell her that Anna wanted to see her. I skipped the part where Anna "should forgive" because I didn't want her to feel like I was demanding her to do so, I know my sweet girl will eventually forgive. Also, I want my daughter to know that she is every bit entitled to feel anger, pain and hurt, and that her opinions and feelings DO matter. But, last night I did ask her at bedtime if she has forgiven her grandmother at all, and she said a little. I told her that if she wanted, she could pray that God help her... and she did. :)

Forgiveness begins inside one's self, so it is no wonder that forgiveness heals the wounded and the forgiven alike.

I hope that my girl can grasp what has taken her momma so many years to figure out.

I also hope that when the time comes that the MIL will be ready with an open heart and will want to see Anna (supervised visits only), even though she has made it perfectly clear that Emma (my youngest)is her favorite grandchild. Actually, I hope that the MIL comes to accept her responsibility in this whole mess because Anna did nothing wrong, and that she attempts to reconcile with Anna soon.

If the MIL tries to place the blame on Anna or is indignant or angry when Anna is ready to see her, I am afraid that the bear in me will come out ... in order to protect my cub. If the MIL keeps on this self centered/ self destructive path, her grandchildren will one day be too busy for HER. I don't want that at all.

We'll see... I am hoping and praying for the best, though my faith in my child's remaining grandparent is scraping the bottom of the barrel.

EDIT TO ADD: (As written to a good friend just minutes ago) I will still be guarded in that I will protect my daughter , no matter what it takes. We already decided that she will no longer watch our kids for us, or take them any where... we were willing to overlook some very dangerous behaviors on her part... for what? To not rock the boat and make her upset? At what cost, our children?

We realize now- actually John mostly because with each of those instances I told John he needed to talk to his mother because I didn't want to be the bitch, but I always ended up doing it anyway not him- that that was wrong. Going to a movie is not more important than our kid's safety.

Yes, the rule is she can visit but never alone... the visits will be supervised. If she starts to act stupid and take stuff out on Anna then she can't see them anymore. If she isn't willing to get over herself- meaning accept responsibility for what happened recently- then she can't come over.

The point I want to make to Anna is that I accept that she has feelings, and that forgiving is not really for her grandmother... it's to help Anna to move on with her life despite it's ups and downs. Sure, her grandmother will need to know that Anna forgives her, when Anna is ready.

The MIL has threatened to move back to Texas... but I think she is realizing that it isn't a threat to me and John... I think she knows now that we couldn't care less.

I don't know if having her in their lives will be good for them... the jury is still out... it kind of depends on how she acts in the near future.

Also, quite frankly... I would like to know that I did everything in MY power to make things better in the event the MIL does decide to move back to Texas... then she can't blame us for moving. It'll all be on HER. I'm not saying at all that I am going to throw my kids to the wolf to make things "all better". Nope. Supervised visits only, and only if the MIL behaves herself. If she can't do that then she can't visit.

The whole point of this post though is this: I want to help ANNA heal. If she can heal by forgiving the MIL, great. I want to teach my kids to move on to bigger and better things, not to sit in the dark depressed because people can and will hurt you.

This is all exclusive of the fact that Anna may or may not feel comfortable around the MIL ever again. If Anna doesn't want to see the MIL, I will respect that. I'll just have to hope that when Anna is ready (if ever) to resume a relationship with her grandmother, that the MIL will be adult enough to accept full responsibility for what happened, and can change... and that they can both move on from there. I doubt it though, the MIL is pretty set in her ways. And that makes me sad for my kids... but maybe they are better off without her.

Friday, August 24, 2007

My visit with my sister (picture intense)

Eeek! It's been almost a week since my tattoo... it's really itchy but I love it. the colors are really popping now! Thanks Rafael!

Thursday night I arrived to find my brother and sister waiting for me... all smiles! That was so nice!

We took The Beast (my suitcase) up to the hotel room, then came back down for a bite to eat. Besides being ogled by a couple dudes in the snack bar, we had a nice time chatting (and teasing each other) over fries. When back to the room my bro and I were sharing and talked some more, until about 1 am Reno time- which was about 3 am Iowa time.

ZZZZzzzzzzzzzzz... we got up bright and early and had breakfast before going to get our tattoos.
Afterwards we refueled with lunch then went over to Marci's house for margaritas and dinner. I told Marci I hadn't been this relaxed in years, but I soon realized some of it was because I wasn't chasing around my ankle biters to tell them to stop poking each other with sharp and pointy objects. You know what they say about absence... I was missing the noise of my girls. Not for long though, my nieces and nephew are adorably noisy. ;) It was almost like being at home with the Disney channel and kid background noise. They took to Ben and I right away, and since Ben had gotten there a day early he had gotten to exchanging jokes with the oldest already. Here they are opening some gifts we brought for them.

Katie, 15Becca, 12
Matt, 7

Marci is very lucky to have found such a wonderful cook for a husband! :D They were high school sweet hearts and have been together for 21 years, and married for 17. Jeff makes the best baked beans I have ever had. Ben and I were pooped, but when we got back to the hotel room at 12:30 am we were wide awake and stayed up until 3 am talking and reading. Mostly it was me talking while Ben tried to read. *snort*

Let me just say that while visiting my sis in Reno, I ate VERY WELL. Unfortunately for us, we had some sort of beans every day. Yes, sharing a room was a little uncomfortable at times, and at first the bathroom fan got quite the workout. Eventually though, we just showed the love and shared like only family can. I told Marci that to think- the next visit Ben and I will be comfortable enough to "share" with her too, LOL!

Saturday we went out to a late breakfast at the Black Bear Diner with the whole family and walked around Reno a bit to work off the HUGE breakfast we all ate...
***you can actually see my chin getting bigger as the trip progresses ;)***

and played some games in the arcade.

Treasure at the Silver Legacy! The rug has 24K gold threads and jewels woven into it *drool*
Then we stopped by a sporting goods store to find a toy for the kids- meaning me and Ben LOL! We wanted to find a marshmallow gun for us- I mean our kids ;) Of course no trip is complete without the snuggling of puppies!My plan was to freak John out by sending him an email that said "Guess what I bought in Reno?", but I forgot to do it. Darn!

By now, Jeff was loosening up a little bit and actually talking to Ben and I, after he realized that we are both just big Goofballs. He is kind of like my hubby, quiet at first until he gets to know you a little better. Marci had no problem hanging with the Goofballs and we all got into a little friendly teasing here and there. :D

Later that night the adults went to a buffet and gorged ourselves on ribs, chicken and sausage. We were all so full we were groaning... but that didn't stop Jeff from suffereing through the last piece of sausage. I promised myself that I wouldn't eat another thing after that night, and told Ben that the I was pretty sure the 6 pounds I had lost before the trip had found me again. We walked- or rather rolled- around Reno to help the grease in our stomachs to dissipate.

Sunday early afternoon we braved the pool at the hotel despite seeing waves and white caps on the water. It was so windy that the 90 degree day seemed like 50 once we got into the pool. Everyone got in except for Jeff, who turned out to be the smartest of the bunch. Once I got in, I stayed in... that's how cold it was after we got out because the 20-25 mph winds going on. Despite the teeth chattering and shivering, we had fun... but we cut it short because we were all turning blue. ;)

Later that day after Ben and I took turns taking showers, we headed over to Marci's for margaritas and a nice relaxed dinner.

Ben and I stayed up packing until 1 am, then we got up early Monday and had breakfast with Jeff and Marci since all of the kids were at school. We walked around a little bit then made our way to the airport. Ben and I managed to get our tickets changed so we could sit together as we flew to Denver for our connecting flights. We ate at a Mexican Grill and had chicken taco salads, with... you guessed it- beans. ;) ben and talked a bit more about our loved ones while blowing garlic chicken burps at each other, we laughed a lot. I saw Ben off at his gate because his flight back to Maryland as an hour earlier that my flight back to Iowa... that ended up being delayed 2 hours.

For about an hour I frantically tried to get a hold of John to let him know my plane would be late so he wouldn't be stuck at the airport with 2 cranky kids, since my original flight was supposed to get in at 11pm. If you have read my previous rantings about the MIL, you know that we really couldn't call her to watch the kids neither John or I trusted her anymore, and neither did Anna. I finally got a hold of John and he got the girls in their jammies and tried to catch a nap, but none of them slept. Luckily the girls fell asleep on the way to the airport and they slept for a bit. I managed to control myself though, unlike another infamous flight. ;) The plan was for me to meet them in the parking lot since the kids would be sleeping, but Emma heard my plane come in and decided she wanted OUT of the car... so to my surprise I turned to find them standing a ways off while I waited for my suitcase. Emma was a bit shy at first but she leapt into my arms after about a minute. :)I arrived in Iowa at 1 am, and got home at 2, with 2 very sleepy children in tow.

So there you have it... my trip from soup to nuts, alpha to omega. We had a nice visit and Ben and Marci are already making plans for another trip. Ben said he was thinking that we could take turns visiting at each other's home, but decided that there is probably NOTHING to do in Iowa. I told him that there is plenty to do in Iowa, you just have to be willing to drive. He's such a dork. ;)

We'll see how it goes, I already told Ben and Marci that we have been dodging the bullet for many years on visiting Houston, Texas ( 1184 miles, 18 hours) where John's sister and brother live... The last time we were down there is was right after I came back from Desert Shield/ Desert Storm in '91, and Anna and I went down when Anna was 6 months old to visit for a week while John moved us from California to Iowa so it's been a long time. Matt's GF has 2 daughters and the youngest will be having her QuinceaƱera in a couple of years, and Matt wants us to come down for that. So we will have to save up for that, and probably drive to save some money. Emma will be 4 1/2 by then so she should be able to handle the 18 hour drive by then.

The good thing though is by then Emma will be able to withstand the drive to Maryland (862 miles, 14 hours) too. :D

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A word on tattoos

Much like giving birth, the pain that you experience during is inexplicable. Just like childbirth, there is a lot of "breathing", groaning, cursing, and clenching. Trust me, ANYTHING that can be clenched WILL BE clenched. ;)

But once you see your new beautiful baby, all the pain is forgotten. OK, not really- IT HURT LIKE HECK. My new baby isn't perfect, and I freaked out that it is slightly crooked. My tattoo artist added two vines at the top to make it look more even... My brother and sister assured me that it's barely noticeable and John said the same thing when he saw it Monday night. Me... I'm still obsessing about it, but I am hoping that I can have some vines added to it later if it really bothers me.

I now have a beautiful piece of artwork on my body. At times I am still shocked to see it there on my lower back, it actually looks like it is painted on.... it's almost 8 inches in width. That's a lot bigger than I had originally planned!

As far as the place we went to , the name is Stingray Tattoo in Reno. The guys there were awesome and very nice. Except for the guy who did mine... he was nice but he was A TRIP! I could tell that since this was my first tatt, he was trying to have some fun with me. He tried really hard to freak me out, but after trying for about 20 minutes he realized that there was no shocking ME. In the end though, Rafael and I had a nice time chatting (in between me gasping for air and almost biting the tattoo table) about life and how we are all God's creatures when it comes down to it. We discussed family values, family drama and family humor. It was pretty cool.

MY tattoo took almost 2 hours and originally my sis thought hers would take longer, but that was before the shop owner/manager told me that to get all the detail I should stick with the original size. We decided to get them done the morning after I got there instead of waiting until Sunday, which was Friday. I'm glad we did because I probably would have changed my mind about the whole thing considering it's a bit like waiting to take your turn at the gallows. ;)

Waiting for the bottom to drop out, Mary thinks, "What the heck am I doing here... this is a baaaaad idea. Gad, I hope I don't flinch or fart while they are mutilating me."My sis Marci (on the right) is cool as a cucumber. On the outside. ;)

Ben says, "Don't worry... piece of cake. Ooooh, I think I just threw up in my mouth a little."

"OK, I can do this... That's not so-"


"Let the clenching begin!"

Ben's tatt- This way it reads "Family", from the other side and flipped it reads "Forever". He added his GF's initials... he's really trying to get Tammy to understand that she is The One and wants to spend the rest of his life with her.

This is Marci's- The colors and the flow of the image are just gorgeous. Both me and the sis got flowers!

Here is mine. It's colorful and slightly askew, just like me ;) I chose this design because like the lotus flower, I started in darkness and the mire. Even though I struggled to reach the light, I finally blossomed into something more... something beautiful I hope.What I loved about this design obviously is the flower's symbolism, but I also loved the flow of the design and the vibrancy of color.

I'm already thinking about what tattoo design I would like to get next, but the MISU and I have yet to discuss the possibility of a second.

EDIT TO ADD: I forgot to mention that my brother and I were talking after we were done getting tattoos, and He mentioned that at one point it hurt so bad he thought he was going to fart, I ROFL'd and said I had thought the same thing while I was getting mine done.

Clenching, sometimes it's a good thing.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Six degress of bacon

Err, I meant to say Kevin Bacon. Man I could go for a BLT right now. :)

Flaky and preoccupied as I am lately with my trip just in reach, I started thinking last night about my trip to Reno. Reno is just a plane hop away from Vegas... and the last time I was in Vegas I saw Drew Carey waiting for a limo outside the MGM Grand.

Like the complete and utter dork that I am, I just stood there with my jaw open looking like a total mouth breather. At that time, the Drew Carey Show was one of the big shows on TV and I just stood there missing my big opportunity to tell him how much I loved his show and how funny he is. But no, it didn't occur to me to even speak to him until I noticed the gleam of limo tail lights shining off of my nervously glistening nose and cheeks.

This may seem like a series of unfortunate tangents, but I assure you that I DO have a point.

I was thinking that while I am gone for the 4 1/2 days, I don't want to leave my readers with nothing to ponder... so how's about we play the degrees game- only I am interested in seeing who can come up with the least amount of degrees to someone famous. The famous person can be from any arena (TV, Radio, movies, sports, authors, politics...etc), and there is no limit to the amount of degrees you can use.

OK, here is mine: Me>The MISU (my hubby)>The MISU's friend Chuck Laudner>Chuck's cousin Tim Laudner, retired baseball player (formerly of the Minnesota Twins, World Series 1988)

OK, that's my squirrelly idea, so have fun while I'm gone. I'm leaving at 3:45 pm today to catch a plane. Feel free to help yourself to the fridge, but please lock up when you leave. Oh, and don't let the cat out. ;)

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Do the Frisk thing!

***Scroll down for Wordless Wednesday.***

This is just a PSA from Mert to do your monthly breast exams.
I've picked the 15th because, well... Frisk the 15th sounded kind of catchy. ;)

If you would like to post one on your blog to remind the women bloggers you care about to "frisk" themselves monthly, please feel free to get yourself a graphic here.

Yup, it's that time again gals! I made up a little ditty to the tune of the old Army Cadence Call.

I don't know what you been told
But breast exams are for young AND old!

Sound off!
Sound off!
1 - 2 - 3 - 4,
1 - 2 --- 3 - 4!

Women across the blogging land,
Give your breasts a helping hand!

Sound off!
Sound off!
1 - 2 - 3 - 4,
1 - 2 --- 3 - 4!

Breast exams by me and you...
Could help save a boob or two!

Sound off!
Sound off!
1 - 2 - 3 - 4,
1 - 2 --- 3 - 4!

Make the time for a monthly Frisk!
Frisk yourself, reduce the risk!

1 - 2 - 3 - 4,
1 - 2 --- 3 - 4!

Seriously though, make time for yourself because YOU are important. Happy Frisking!

Wordless Wednesday- This is the design I want on my body forever. :D (click the image for the whole story)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Mess... the final frontier... to boldly go where no blogger has gone before!

My sis is cleaning her house for my (and my brother's) visit... just to show that I don't expect her house to be spotless in order for me to see it, I decided to show her my house in it's original format. There are no special effects or editing... and you even get a glimpse of me in form of rough copy- before the benefit of shower and makeup.

Also, you get a glimpse into the my version of the Wild Animal Kingdom, served with a dollop of sarcasm. ;)

So, put you TMI glasses on and buckle up, you are in for a bumpy ride. :)

I've seen "show me your purse" stuff floating around the blogosphere, so who dares to scare, share and bare their lair?

Monday, August 13, 2007

Manic Monday- Drop

Today's manic Monday is brought to you by the word DROP. For more MM's visit Mo's site and join in the fun!

I'm going to Reno in 4 days... are my bags packed yet? Why, yes they are. Thanks for asking. Obsess much, you are correct, sir! I packed my suit case Friday night. Yup that's right, almost a week before my trip, my stuff is all packed with the exception of make up and my blow dryer. ;)

But I digress, we are supposed to be discussing the word DROP. What was my point? Oh yes... since I tend to make regular drop offs in the boob zone (bombing my chest and the outlying regions, missing my mouth completely at times), I have had to rethink the whole "I'm only bringing a carry on bag so I can avoid the whole luggage pick up thing... I'm only going to be gone for 4 days, so I shouldn't need much ..." thingy.

I had originally thought that I could bring this cute, adorable and completely inadequate carry on bag:
Now this may seem like it's an average sized suit case, right? I assure you that compared to The Beast that I will be hauling, it's a Hobbit. I might as well humiliate myself further to illustrate just how much of a problem I have. Without further ado, I present for your delight, comparison and contrast... The Beast and The Hobbit! *insert gasp here*

I can't help it! I alway over pack! But in my defense, as I said I have a problem with food. Food loves my boobs and my boobs love food. Food loves the front of my body so much that I might as well just toss the food up into air and wait to see where it drops. Therefore I have packed (at least) one extra shirt per day that I will be away.

In retrospect, I have gotten quite the chuckle out of myself (and lots of scoffing from the MISU) that I dared to think that The Hobbit would suffice. My unrealized dreams of The Hobbit being stowed neatly in the over head bin and visions of myself skipping merrily past the luggage terminal were crushed by the reality that a girl really does need shoe options. Not to mention extra shirts for the inevitable War on Boobs.

It was nice to dream though, and those dreams are stuff that fairy tales are made of.

Hmmmm... another thought... my brother snores. I could drop some ear plugs into my ears. Or a pillow over my head. A pillow over his head?

Ahhhh, I have it! I could drop some ice down his shorts! ;)

On another note, I am sure my hubs- the MISU- is completely beside himself with joy that he only has to drop me off at the airport and will not be there to lug The Beast to my hotel room. ;)

Friday, August 10, 2007

Me me me ;)

Yeah, I know... it's not all about me. Seems like it has been according to my last posts but just one more tidbit about me? Please?... John was able to get those 2 days off, so now I can relax and actually go on my trip next week. Yeeeehaw!

Now on to other mememe stuff: my good blogging friend Tiggerprr tagged me for this very unique meme. Here are the rules:

1. You have to post these rules before you give the facts.
2. Players, you must list one fact that is somehow relevant to your life for each letter of their middle name. If you don’t have a middle name, use the middle name you would have liked to have had.
3. When you are tagged you need to write your own blog post containing your own middle name game facts.
4. At the end of your blog post, you need to choose one person for each letter of your middle name to tag. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

Ok, my name is Charlaine... this is going to be interesting!

C- Chocolate, of course! Though I have lost my craving for it, I haven't lost the craving completely. I still indulge , just not every day like I used to.

H- Hair-do, I just got a new funky do. I wasn't sure about it at first and almost had all of my hair cut off to fix it. But after a week of messing with it, I kind of like it, and it looks a little bit like this when I fix it with a flat iron:
A- Anna... my first miracle baby.
R- RENO! In 6 days ... to see my sis and her family again after 10 years... and my little brother too! :D

L- Love. I would do anything to protect my family. Anything.

A- Art. I really need to focus and try to paint or draw. I miss it!

I- Idiots and Insanity. My husband and I have both in our family trees... which makes me concerned for my children. Maybe I'll start hiding Prozac in their mashed potatoes now while they are young. I kid, people... I jest. ;)

N- Normalcy. Something I strive very hard for... though I hear that "normal" is the new "nuts".

E- Enormous. My middle name is enormous. :) I'm afraid I'm going to have to wimp out on the last rule as I just don't know if I can tag a person for each letter.

Want to join in on the fun? You're it!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Oh gad, does the fun ever start?

Besides the minor sibling annoyances that are bound to happen when family visits each other, and getting lost in Chicago and having to walk 10 blocks in the rain to find a bus to take us back to the Field Museum from the Navy Pier... the visit with John's brother and family has been very nice.

Except when the MIL is involved. Yes- I am about to talk about HER again... but only because she insists on general MIL-ness and insanity. Daddy Forever has a neighbor named The Butthead, I may have to steal this from him. ;)

Before I delve into the recent insanity, let me just say that I have been very distracted about blogging recently. I have been having trouble even sitting down to read... I'm so nervous and excited about going out to see my sister IN ONE WEEK! So I am sorry that I have been absent the last month, and I just wanted to say to all my regular reads to please forgive me for not being around more... it's nothing personal. I still heart all of you, it's just that I have been a bit of a mess lately.

Anna starts school 2 days after I get back from my trip so we had to get all of her school preparations squared away. I've been trying to get things ready for when I'm gone for only 4 1/2 days but everything is second nature to me, I'm here with the kids all day. John is pretty good at all of it but I want to make things easier on him. On top of that I'm just listless.

Anywhoo... My BIL brought his long time girl friend and her 2 daughters that live with him, plus his girl friend's niece. They are all staying at the MIL's apartment. From the get go, MIL has been following them around the apartment saying "what are you doing, don't do that, who said you could eat that..." and just generally upsetting the GF and her children. On top of that the MIL kind of picks on the youngest who is 12. As it turns out, since my BIL used to live with the MIL (meaning she was going to buy a house that she couldn't afford so she asked her younger son to help her with the mortgage payments while living with her) that the MIL has a looooong history of being mean and cruel to the GF and her children , even though Matt has been with her over 6 years and has lived with her for over 2.

One incident involved the MIL babysitting for Matt and the GF... the MIL grabbed the youngest (who was probably only 7 or 8 at the time) by the arm, digging her nails in hissing at her. The little one told her mom and Matt (my BIL) about it and the MIL denied it and called the little one a liar... then proceeded to tell the GF that it was HER house and if she didn't like she could leave.

Two days ago, we went out to see John and Matt's cousin who lives 35 minutes from us. The second I got there and sat down in the living room, my MIL started in on me.

"WE went here to day, WE went there... WE did this and WE did that and WE had such a great time." All of which I just forced a smile at. I know it's all a lie because every time i see the GF, she tells me how miserable the MIL is making everyone, so it's not all peachy like she is pretending.

"ME and THE GIRLS are going to the pool..." As in "You're not invited". I sigh and say nothing.

"Matt was telling ME AGAIN what a mistake it was for me to have moved back up here (She says for the 100th time and likes to remind us every chance she gets...She moved from Texas almost 2 years ago , supposedly so she could see her grandchildren every day, which you may know does NOT happen at all)..." OK , this is about where I start to fume.

So I say, "What does, Matt yell at you about this EVERY time he sees you?"

"Well... *scrambling for words* It's just that- ummm, well he always reminds me that he tried to get me to add on to the house (while he was living with her, with his money) or fix up the garage... but I keep telling him that I just don't REMEMBER any of that.*fake and uncomfortable smile*

*for the 20th time she tells me* I still get on him about the fact that he never told me he knew how to do all of that stuff- you know, electrical, drywall, plumbing... He could have saved us a lot of money and done it (all of the improvements she had done to her kitchen which was almost a total remodel... by a bankruptcy client- of all people- from the firm she worked at as a bankruptcy legal assistant ) all himself."

"Well, I would imagine that it's not a good idea to go into home remodeling with your own mother. All you would have done is argue," I say.

"Well, we did argue because Matt didn't like the way the guy was doing everything..."

"I'm just saying that you guys would have argued even more if he had been doing all of the work, so that's probably why he didn't tell you he knew how to do any of that."

She is silent for about 2 minutes, and I figure the conversation is over.

"Well ,*not looking at me and looking down at her hands, oh crap she's going into guilt mode. I can just tell* at least I know my brother is always there for me if I need him... and I hope he knows that I am always there for him."

That's good- I say.

"I thought I have always been there for my children, but OBVIOUSLY NOT."

At this point I do what I always do to refrain from getting into a cat fight with the woman- and to let her know that she is not in control and I refuse to be manipulated, I get up and walk away.

As I am walking away, she adds, "Why don't you just drop it!"

I stop for a moment with my back to her, incredulous... but try to disguise my shock by pretending that I got up to throw my gum away. Me? Drop it? I hadn't said a word once she started her guilt trip. Instead of just leaving the room, I announce to my husband- who is in the kitchen I am walking through- that I am leaving the house in it's entirety, and flash him that sarcastic smile that can mean only one thing... I am about to kill HER.

Later, we all are leaving to go to the local pizza place to eat dinner and my MIL is standing outside and scowling. She sees Anna walking out of the house and I can tell that she is waiting to see if Anna acknowledges her, which Anna does in passing. Anna is clearly uncomfortable that her grandmother is scowling at her and says a weak "hi nana" as she passes. My MIL does this sometimes because she is jealous that my girls will pay more attention to other relatives. I have told the MIL in the past that maybe if she came over and saw her grand kids more that every 1 1/2 weeks maybe- just maybe they would acknowledge her more.

As you may or may not know, I have mentioned the fact that we only live 3 or 4 blocks away from her. She has tried to insist that we come over to her place but I don't see why we should lug all of the junk we need up stairs to keep the kids entertained when she can drive over in less than a minute. She's always "too busy" (weight watcher's meeting, TV shows, cleaning her apartment, doing laundry.... seriously, I'm not kidding- these are her excuses for not seeing them for almost 2 weeks sometimes) to come over, so we don't ask anymore. I start to feel bad and try again to get her over here. I've asked her over to swim in our pool, over for dinner... nope. She's too busy. She has the nerve to tell people that she never see her grand kids because we are never home, even though I tell her to call me at least a couple of hours before she wants to come over so I can make sure we aren't out running around and are home. Does she do that? Rarely.

Anyway-After we get back from dinner, Emma climbs right into the baby pool that Jason (the cousin) has out for his 19 month old. Anna and the younger girls chase each other around with sand pails full of water, getting each other wet. I don't see what happens next but the MIL took a pail- literally snatched from what I was told- and filled it up then proceeded to throw the pail full of water FULL FORCE into Anna's face seconds after Anna did an about face. Anna didn't know that her grandmother even had a pail and was standing behind her, so she screamed in pain from the dirty water hitting her in the eyes full force, then choked because she inhaled water after screaming. She was completely soaked and could see.

The MIL grabbed her arm and was saying, "OH, you're fine, you're fine."

I ran over after I heard Anna scream, and pushed the MIL out of the way, and took sobbing Anna inside and changed her into dry clothes. The whole time I could hear the blood pounding in my ears. What made me so angry was that the MIL wasn't even involved in the water play with the kids, and she just all of a sudden gets up and does that to Anna. She didn't do it to the GF's kids because she knows that the GF would have chewed her a new one. The MIL didn't do it to her favorite grandchild because Emma is only 2 years old... so she does it to Anna? Or did she do it because she was mad that Anna had barely interacted with her all night? I say this because the MIL has behaved very childishly in the past when this has happened, and even was mean verbally to Anna after that, also saying things loudly for Anna to hear to try to make her feel guilty.

When I came back inside (after cursing under my breath for several minutes) I contemplated asking the MIL if she would like to hold Emma's head under the water of the baby pool next, but I didn't, I walked in the opposite directions. Meanwhile the MIL's sister tried to make weak excuses for her sister like Anna just happened to turn at the wrong time.

It doesn't matter to me. I didn't see what happened unfortunately but I wouldn't put it past my MIL to do something like that out of anger because Anna had only spoken to her in passing. Any way you shake it, if I was Anna's grandma I would never dump a whole bucket of water on a 6 year old, and I especially would not aim the water at a 6 year old's head - front or back. Normal grandma's don't do things like that. This is something that my nut case mother would do.

Also, there is no point in me even asking the MIL what happened because I know for fact that she lies. There have been many times that John and have caught her in lies that she has told to make herself look better - if not blameless. So I know for certain that i wont get the truth out of her. The MIL's sister likes to defend family any time they are put in a bad lime light so I know that even though she may have seen the whole thing, she will distort it so her sister looks like she did nothing wrong.

Which all really saddens me because a 6 year old is involved here... a 6 year old that is FAMILY.

So, now I am having second thoughts about the MIL watching my girls since she has shown bad judgment in the past. Not to mention the time I came home while the MIL was babysitting to find Emma standing in our large picture window in the living room, wrapping a card from the blinds around her neck, meanwhile my MIL sat there oblivious watching tv... for over a minute. Just to prove a point I stood there and watched Emma until the point it could have gotten dangerous (Emma never got the cord around her neck , only on the sides, but when she started getting it around her neck, I banged on the window and told her she better stop that and get off the window seat), my MIL insisted that she was just on her way over to to get Emma. I told her that I had been standing there for almost a minute so that was a lie and she denied it even though John backed me up.

I am ashamed to admit that when we are in a crunch, despite the incidents in the past, we have had her watch the kids. No more. I just don't think she is capable of doing what is right for my kids anymore.

To top all of that off, Matt's GF told me last night that the MIL said yesterday, "I might as well move back to Texas because I'm not ALLOWED TO BE A GRANDMOTHER HERE."

This made me so angry all i could do was sputter and stammer. I couldn't even get a whole sentence out.

Then yesterday the MIL was mad at the GF's daughter and the MIL's sister's grand daughter and she threatened to spank her sister's grand daughter all for eating ice cream after they had a late breakfast. The MIL said the GF's youngest was being disrepectful after the MIL yelled at them, and the GF"s youngest said, "But my mom said we could have some."

When the GF tried to find out what happened, the MIL threw her keys across the room, put her shoulder down and shouldered through the GF and bumped her really hard, then went into the bathroom and slammed the door. Then when my BIL came home from picking up his video camera at my house, she talked all sweet to my BIL and sat there and acted like nothing happened. NUTS! She is acting so much like my mother.

Again, very erratic behavior, not to mention childish... I just don't think I can trust her to take care of my kids while I am gone to Reno to see my sister next week. John has a new charting system going in in the hospital he works IT at, so he is only supposed to take one day off at a time, and that is why we asked the MIL to take off one day. That way she could watch the kids on next Friday and John could watch them the Monday after. The MIL decided to take both days off, so John didn't take any days off. I told John that I would rather not go on my trip than to have the MIL watch them, and her watching them is completely out of the question. I know her feelings will be hurt but I have to think of my kids first.

BUT, I also told John that he better not NOT tell his mother so as to avoid confrontation, and that I hoped that since this was different circumstances that his boss would let him take the extra day. If not... I'm not going. :( I hope everything works out and I can go... we'll be out 300.00 for tickets but I'm not going to trust my children to be safe in the hands of someone who obviously can't think straight enough to behave appropriately.

If you're still reading this... thanks! I hope to get back to being more positive soon ;)

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Irk me. Go ahead, make my day.

Just a short note to the people who tend to ignore the rules of polite society (that means YOU MIL):

1. When you repeatedly volunteer me because you are too lazy to do something yourself, that irks me.

2. This includes saving stuff for me or your son to do, and avoiding doing said things... until we are at your house. Let's say you have offered to let us take your car to 6 Flags on Sunday because your car is larger than ours, but you decide that the best time to clean out your car is the night before and after you have asked your son over for cake and ice cream. In the middle of a party.

3. And then volunteer me to take pictures at your party, AND to put flea medicine on your cat since I happen to be sitting down- and obviously with nothing better to do than enjoy a visit with family I haven't seen in a while. Sure, let me get right on that... it's not like I was in the middle of a conversation or anything.

4. On that note... It is NOT polite to scream my name at the top of your lungs and out through your nasal passages from across your apartment because YOU need to volunteer me for something else. I refuse to assist you in this case and will hold firm my ground if this should ever happen again. I'm not 8 years old and refuse to be summoned this way ever again.

5. Interrupting a conversation to insert random anecdotes about your favorite child, which is usually not even close to being a tangent to the current conversation... well it's rude and just a little bit nuts. Having lived with my own mother for 18 years,I know a little... just a smidge about nuts.

6. Whispering behind a hand about someone that is standing just feet away from you, all the while staring at them... that was cute I'm sure when you were 5. Seeing as you have 56 more years of life experience, I would expect that a person of your age would realize, cute? Not so much.

7. Your younger son is 37 years old, he can go buy beer if he wants. He's a big boy. And no, he doesn't need your permission after you telling him that he doesn't really need a beer. I can guarantee you that ironically, one WOULD need a beer in this situation- especially since you regularly keep wine in your fridge and you are being a HUGE hypocrite.

8. Oh, one more thing... it's not cute or EVER FREAKING funny to call an innocent child- let's say for example YOUR GRANDCHILD- fat or chubby, not even if you're *air quote* being funny or *air quote* just joking around. Not even when you yourself have lost every square inch of your fat rear and you don't have the slightest chance of being the slightest bit hypocritical, will it EVER be OK. *And especially not since you are annoyed with your innocent grand daughter because you took the liberty of buying her shirts without her being present, and are annoyed because the shirts you bought are too small and now you have to take your lazy carcass back to the store to return them.* The next time you do that (which would be -oh , lets say - incident #21), I will have to resort to such violence as punching you square in the face. I'll punch first and ask questions later because I have first hand knowledge of how damaging that can be to a child, and how they will carry it with them for the rest of their lives- no matter what weight they are.

OK, I wont really punch you BUT I will merely envision myself doing so as I drag your sorry butt into the kitchen and explain all of this to you, and while you stand there telling me why you think it's no big deal. I will refrain from bodily harm, but I may have to resort to reducing you to tears as I explain that you will not be welcome in this home unless you can stop being a self centered, self serving, and condescending idiot to your grand child.

All that stuff I wrote above? Yeah, don't do that. It annoys me.

I'm glad we had this talk, only I know it wont go as well when i actually have to tell you all of this because

Friday, August 03, 2007

HaHa, very funny, kid.

Me a few minutes ago: Emma it's time for a nap.

Emma: *insert whining here* Awww-wah-awwww... I NOT take A NAP!

Me: Dude, don't even start with me ... you know you take a nap EVERY DAY. It's time for a nap.

Emma: For you?

Me: Ahhhhh, NOooo... It's nap time for YOU.

Emma: *obviously ignoring me* You tired momma? You take a nap now?

Me: *yes- I think to myself- I am tired and could use a nap* Ha Ha. Very funny, kid.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Memory Post Meme

Janie (who was tagged by Mimi...) tagged me for this meme :)

Here are the rules:

You must post five links to posts you have written.

Post your five links and then tag five other people. At least two of the people you tag must be newer acquaintances so that you get to know each other better . . . and don’t forget to read the archive posts and leave comments!

Link 1 must be about family:


Link 2 must be about friends:

Not So Anonymous Michelle hearts me!

Link 3 must be about yourself, who you are, what you’re all about:

Thinking Meme

Link 4 must be about something you love:

Love is

Love is... Part Two (the grungy version)

Link 5 can be anything you choose:

Thirteen things that never fail to make me laugh

The folks I am tagging are:




Dorky Dad

Absolutely Bananas

EVERYONE is invited to participate. You do not have to be tagged! If you do, please link back to this post and let me know when you have published your post with the links to your five articles as I will update this article to include them, thereby providing a bunch of link love for everyone!