Sunday, February 27, 2011

A Post That is NOT About Jimmer, but IS about Mattresses

(My husband is a very, very big BYU fan and completely in awe of Jimmer Fredette, and thinks I should post about him. SO not happening. I couldn't care less about that kid, I'm sure he is a nice boy, but I am not wasting a blog on some 10 yr old basketball player, not matter how good he is. Now, if he were my son, maybe, but no...sorry honey.)

So, TGH and I went mattress shopping on Saturday aftenoon (after the BYU game of course). We thought at first that we would just go to Costco and buy their set, a Sealy, for a pretty reasonable price. But, we realized, we had no way to bring it home, and no friends with pickups (don't we have any redneck friends?) We only have the 15 passenger van, which, while excellent for taking the entire population of small towns on field trips, is no good for furniture bigger than  about 4 ft wide. Now, to be fair, TGH would love for us to have a twin bed to share, and it would fit in the would probably fit in the Toyota... He is a cuddler. I dream of a California King...we've comprised at Queen.

TGH is also a very serious comparison shopper. Sometimes, we've spent so much time comparing, that we never actually get to the part where we buy the thing we are comparing. Not this time. I am determined to buy a mattress with our tax refund.

Alright, just a minute, we are having some technical difficulties...TGH is here, and he is taking offense to the G' in his pseudonym. I told him it meant 'Gorgeous', but in truth, it means 'Graying'...which he has figured out and now does not want to be associated with my blog. How sad would it be if my own husband didn't follow my blog??

So, here it is, TGH's real name: BLAIR. There it is, his real name, out there for anyone to see. His name is actually the second thing I liked best about him, right after his nose...he has the best nose....

Back to the was I saying? Oh, yeah, the mattress. I remember! We drove over to a furniture/mattress store here in town and laid on one of the mattresses lined up for this purpose. (Lied on one? No, that makes me sound like a fibber) The salesmen said we would only get confused if we laid on more...and he said the mattress had a 10 yr guarantee, $50 delivery, AND if we tried to return it, there would be $200 fee, because the government is really cracking down on used mattress trafficking. OOOOKAAAAY....

Next store #3, just a hop, skip and a jump away. It really was next door, we just walked over. It is a local business, owned and operated by a family. I have actually bought mattresses there in the past, for the kids. The owner/salesman encouraged us to lie down on several different selections, and offered us free delivery and a 'previous customer' discount. Nice!

(It did feel a little weird to be laying, er, be flat on my back on a mattress, next to my husband, BLAIR, who was having fun making double entendres, in the store. Just a titch. Lol, I guess it would have been weirder to be lying next to someone else's husband in a mattress store, which, coincidentally, is what BLAIR did at the next store...)

So, we got this guy's card, and went to store #4. A BIG furniture store where you can buy anything for your home, including flooring, and the strangest looking centerpiece for a dining table I have ever seen. It seriously looked like something you scraped off the forest floor, put on a bluish metal plate and stuck a fake rodent/cat/thing in the middle of. $199.00. No kidding. I fight to keep that kind of crap OFF of the kitchen table, but, hey, that's just me. Apparently.

We were immediately assaulted by a salesman who confidently assured us he could find our mattress. We gave him the brush-off and, I'm not kidding, he totally stared right at us the whole time we were in there. I tried giving him a dirty look, but he was very serious about his whole Jedi-buy-a-mattress-mind-thing, and my piddly look had no effect. We tried out a few of the mattresses, and this is the part where BLAIR and another guy both laid down on the same mattress at the same time. I said, "Get out of bed with that man." And the guy said, "It's ok, he can stay." Um, no he can't. Jedi-salesman finally decided he'd penetrated our minds, and jogged over to see how we were doing. We carefully took back control of our brains, and beat a hasty retreat.

Back to store #3, where we took a few more minutes to lay/lie on our first choice for a few more awkward moments and then made the purchase, which will be delivered, free of charge on Friday. AND if we don't like it, we have 30 days to get our money back or make a trade, on our new mattress with it's 15 year warranty.

A productive day, I thought, until we got home and BLAIR said, "Wow, you were getting a little friendly there on the mattresses, don't you think?"

Him: Eyebrows waggle. Me: EYEBROWS UP.

I can assure you, I was the picture of propriety whilst mattress shopping. I should have told him the 'G' stood for Goofy:)

Friday, February 25, 2011

Mt. Laundry

How do you tackle Mt Laundry at your house? At my house it is often like trying to shovel a sand dune with a teaspoon.

I would like to pretend I am that woman, the super woman who never lets an item of clothing hit the floor. Whose children always have clean clothes, who always folds or hangs up the clothes right out of the dryer. The woman whose clothes are always ironed. Who never has unmatched socks. I am sure she never runs out of laundry soap or dryer sheets. Who always has a full linen closet and plenty of guest towels for company. Her brother in law has NEVER had to go get his own towel out of the dryer when he came for Thanksgiving. She has never had the someone ring the doorbell and have the living room covered in laundry piles.

For the record...this is not me. There are almost always clothes that need to be washed. I always have a basket of unmatched socks. Children often get their clothes straight from the dryer. Jeans can and should be worn more than once and so can pajamas. I encourage the kids to use the same towel for at least three days. I have moved laundry piles to make room for someone to sit on the couch and my poor brother in law had to go and find his own towel.

Laundry is not my forte. I am terrific at helping at school, doing homework, understanding math, and running a zillion miles an hour a hundred different directions. But not so great at laundry.

Well my dryer is broken and the repair person cannot come until after the weekend. I know I have choices, I can go to the laundromat or hang out the clothes. Or I could go to my bro-in-laws house and dry the clothes there. However I hate the laundromat, it is 30 degrees outside, and my brother-in-law's house is always a wreck.

So Mt. Laundry will grow and hopefully not turn into an avalanche that buries us all before the dryer gets fixed.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

the docs office part 2

I would have named my last post about the doctor's office Part 1, but I didn't actually expect to be going back there so soon. . . .

Let me begin with an update on Miss 4. She did have a rather nasty ear infection, hence the "bubbling" and is now thriving with the help of antibiotics. She told me her ear was still "bubbling" a little, but isn't hurting, so I can only assume the the bubbling will end after a few more days on the medicine.

Anyway, when I was at the doctor with Miss 4, everyone (all-knowing big sister, doctor, and front desk receptionist) kept encouraging me to go ahead and have Miss 7 tested for strep while I was there. But since I have tested my girls for strep with every sore throat they've ever had and they never have it, I declined.

I must add a note here that every single time I really, really, really feel like I'm right and I know what I'm talking about: I'm wrong.

So, yes Miss 7 and I had to go back to the doctor and take the strep test, which was of course, positive because I was sure she did not have it.

Then we had to go back to the super slow pharmacy. I have never visited the super slow pharmacy during evening hours, but they were open and I was hopeful that maybe they'd be quicker.

Miss 7 and I actually had a nice wait. Because of some poor planning on my part, she had not had dinner yet, so we ate at the in-store fast food joint and it was kind of like a nice little mommy/daughter date.

*please excuse the fact that I germed up the place with her contagiousness, she was certain that she was starving.*

When we went back to super-slow pharmacy, they were of course, super-slow and told us to wait a little longer. So we extended our date to include a quick stroll over to the clothing section .

*I really tried not to let her touch or breathe on anything, I promise. Besides you should all be sanitizing your hands after any trip to the store anyway, right. . . . .*

After all the waiting, we finally got the meds, arrived home safe and sound, dosed Miss 7, and sent her off to bed.

As I write this I am vowing, once again (and this time publically) to always take the advice of all-knowing big sister and cram as many children as I can into future doctor's office visits.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What the H***?

So, the other day, the daycare child we all know as 4 yr old boy came to daycare saying, "What the Hell?"  He was mostly using it correctly (if you accept that there even IS a correct way to say this, which I do) for example, when served his lunch: "What the H is this?" And later when he couldn't find his shoes, he muttered, "What the H?"

Hmmm. Ok, A) I don't need daycare kids saying bad words in front of each other because B) the 4 yr old girl's mother already said something to me about her dainty flower using the word, 'balls'. And she meant what you think she meant, only she was under the very mistaken idea that she had them. Which, of course, she does not. Her mother said, that the previous evening, her little princesses (she has 3) were wrestling (a very princess like activity) and when it became a bit vigorous, 4 yr old girl hollered, "Don't kick me in the balls!" Nice:) And funny:)

She told her mother she learned it from 4 yr old boy (who actually does have them). Her mother said to me, "We don't talk like that in our house". Hmmm. Really? So, Katy Perry and Lady Gaga lyrics, "yes", "balls" no. Got it.

My guess is that 4 yr old girl's mom doesn't want her saying "What the H?"

When I told 4 yr old boys mom he was saying this, she insisted he hadn't heard it at home. Are you kidding me? That dad takes that boy home every afternoon and plays Call of Duty with him. My guess is, that's not the only adult style video game this kid plays. Plus I know they are big TV watchers. PLUS, if he didn't hear it at home, then she is implying he heard it HERE.


I love my daycare and I love these kids. The daycare provides for my family. I'm just saying, when my career as a Writer and Motivational/Public Speaker takes off, I might not miss a few of the more colorful pitfalls:)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Miss 4 has been complaining about an ear ache for a couple days. She has also been running a low fever off and on. Last night I decided that today I would take her to the doctor and get this figured out. I was hesitant to do this because Miss 4 is turning out to be a person who really likes to mention and emphasize her aches and pains, but when she started saying her ear was "bubbling," I figured that was my call to action.

Of course that means that this morning she woke up and said her ear was all better. And hopeful mom that I am, I believed her and put off calling the doctor. In another hour, she told me it was hurting again, and "bubbling."


I decide I will call the doctor. Our doctor is an old family friend and we have had nothing but good experiences at his office, until today. Today I called and they had no record of Miss 4 ever visiting their office. Her sisters, yes; her, no. Apparently the appointment-maker-lady I was talking to could not conceive how it could be possible that I would not realize that all of Miss 4's sisters have been to see this doctor and she hasn't. (Maybe appointment-maker-lady has no children and or only one child, so she never makes mistakes.) Whatever the reason, appointment-maker-lady let me know that I was a real pain by not realizing Miss 4 was not in the computer. Ahem. Needless to say she quickly became an unhelpful-appointment-maker-lady and would not fit me in until tomorrow.

I scheduled for tomorrow morning, but when Miss 4's ear started bubbling again I decided the better idea would be to take her to a quick clinic. I loaded up the van with all the girls (and I do mean all, Miss 7 is home from school sick today, too). The quick clinic was not a quick drive, especially when I discovered the road there was closed, but we made it. And they were so nice. And Miss 4's ear infection was diagnosed.

We grabbed our prescription and headed to the pharmacy. I have had very bad luck with this super-slow pharmacy in the past, but I believe I have outwitted them by dropping the prescription and not going back for hours and hours so there is no possibly way they won't be done with it. Cross fingers that this plan will work today.

The only thing left to do was cancel Miss 4's appointment for tomorrow with our regular doctor. As I was waiting on hold, I felt a little nervous about talking to appointment-maker-lady again, but that is silly, right? Wrong. When I cancelled the appointment, she was even grouchier, and reminded me again that when I called for Miss 4 in the future I needed to tell them right away that she was in the computer but had never been seen, so they wouldn't have to go searching for charts that didn't exist. Wow. I don't think she went on any big "search" in the two minutes I'd had her on the phone earlier. Geesh.

I will have my revenge. While I was on hold, they mentioned that I can fill out surveys on line about my experience with them. I am not usually the type to fill out surveys, but this one must be done. Unhelpful-appointment-maker-lady is going to have to learn to be more polite.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

RV show

TGH and I went to the RV show in town on Saturday. I've been thinking, camping is not my number one favorite and there are a couple of reasons.

1. Dirt. There's so much of it! Seriousy, it's everywhere! And even if you get it off, two minutes later, you are covered with it again.

2. The bathrooms. You all know what I'm talking about. If the word 'pit' is involved, I'm not.

3. The food. TGH thinks everything tastes better camping...stuff he'd never eat at home, he'll rave about when he's camping. Chili dogs? We never have them at home, because no one likes them. But serve them camping, and their everyone's new favorite food. Me? I think everything tastes better in a nice restaurant, served by men in white shirts and ties.

4. The trees. Like dirt, they are everywhere. And they all smell. ugh, like pine. Why does everyone think pine is this great odor? Plus, the trees are full of...

5. Wildlife. I'm pretty sure the main reason humans moved into houses was because of wild animals. My feeling is, a human in a sleeping bag probably looks like a delicious burrito to a bear. Chipmunks, bugs, deer, birds, foxes, moose, bears, beavers, racoons and skunks are all prevalent out there and EVERY single one of them looks better through glass.

Hence, the RV. Perfect for me. No smell, no dirt, no animals. Yes to linoleum, mattresses, and flushing toilets (ok, sort of, but still better than a pit)

I saw the perfect one! It's so great, it's not even called an RV anymore, it's a COACH (this is a link to the most fabulous thing you ever saw). And we all know who gets to ride in a COACH. The Princess:)

I gotta get me one of them things...

Friday, February 18, 2011

The volcano...and the rest of the day.

So as my 12 year old boy is leaving for school yesterday morning, he casually says "I have a volcano due tomorrow and it is worth half my grade." Then he hops in the car with his dad and is gone. I meanwhile am standing at the front door with my mouth hanging open in a combination of shock and disbelief.

The whole day yesterday was that kind of day. I am sure you have had those kind of days. The toy bucket got tipped over in my living room at least four times. Two different children dropped full cups of milk on the kitchen floor (at two different times). I dropped a full box of rice krispies in front of the pantry. One toilet overflowed, and the washer refused to run without me staring at it.

I tried to go to the bank to deposit checks, only to discover I had no wallet. Ran home to get the wallet and drive back to discover I have no pen. (luckily the bank had plenty) I went to the post office but discovered I didn't have the letters to mail with me (they were in the other car). I went to the library to return books and realized I left the overdue ones at home. I went to the store to pick up volcano supplies (along with the camping trip snacks, the beauty supplies for the daughter, medications for the m.i.l, and of course more milk and cereal ) only to discover at the check out I have no debit card in my wallet.(it it is still in the van with the bank receipt).

I tried to pick up the 13 year old from school, but he wasn't ready...he was staying after for tutoring (forgot to tell me). I did pick up the 12 year old who was loudly skeptical about the volcano supplies I bought. I went to pick up the 16 year old, who is not waiting only to have a text from her ( a ride home with a friend.) I did pick up the 7 year old but with three extra friends.

Dinner was supposed to be chicken and noodle casserole, it burned and we had hot dogs and popcorn. My husband took the 16yr old to a meeting (a 30 minute drive away) at 6:30 only to discover it had been rescheduled for 7:15.

Eventually everyone got home, the volcano got built, the floor got swept again ( by my sweet husband) and I went to bed at 9! Thankfully today was much better!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Where did we go? What did we do? Questions Answered!

So, once we are sitting in the Jeep, we have to decide, a) sit in the Jeep until Daughter lets us back in, or b) find somewhere to go in this town that is not mobbed by people in love. We decide to go to the bookstore. There is a Border's down the road from us with a sort of outdoor 'mall' you can walk around. There are restaurants and stores and what-have-you all about. The bookstore is full of loser's pretending they don't care one bit about love and what day is it again? Yeah right.....LOSERS....WE are secure in the fact that we don't have to pretend to be in love or not because we are married. That didn't come out right, I mean we ARE in love, but we don't have to PDA all over the place. Which is what we spotted one young couple doing outside the bookstore. TGH was like, "Did you SEE that?" I had been leafing through the book we bought and had apparently missed a young man trying to find the tonsils of a young girl, with his tongue. Nice. Also, apparently, his hands were, well, busy. I was all EW! But of course, TGH thought it was nice and offered to look for MY tonsils. I declined. He said, "They are probably young married's." I said, "Probably not, otherwise, they'd go home to their bed." He said, "Maybe they haven't been married long enough to remember they have a bed." Hmmm.

After a walk around the mall, we decided to give up and head for home. As we were pulling into the driveway, TGH had a flash of inspiration (or desperation) and suggested we go for a treat. We found ourselves at a local restaurant where we ordered an appetizer and chocolate shakes. We talked for a long time, held hands, and did not go tonsil searching. Finally, we decided, FUN and ROMANCE had been had and we went home. To our bed. If you get my drift:) Yay for Marriage and Romance:)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Miss 6 has a kindergarten crush. He has announced to her that he has a crush on her and she has reciprocated. Drawings have been hidden in work cubbies, phone numbers have been exchanged, and now a box of chocolate has been gifted. They are planning to introduce each other to their mothers.

Really? Is it really time to bring in the families? In kindergarten? It all seems a little soon doesn't it?

I am thinking about this in terms of just finding out yesterday that we are having our fifth daughter in June. People are always saying to me, "oh just wait until they're teen agers. All those girls. . . . ."

But doesn't it really all start much earlier than that? They are already in tears throughout the day. They already seek chocolate to ease their pain. They already get emotional over what outfit to wear and whether or not someone has borrowed their favorite whatever.

And apparently, they are already well equipped to deal with the boys they like.

I know those of you with older kids will still shake your heads and say,

"just you wait,"

but I'm just saying, I think it starts early. And I'm pretty sure that all I have to do is blink a few times and I'm really going to be meeting "the mother."

How Our Daughter Saved Our Marriage, I think....

So, I bet you're all dying to know what a V-day hater does for fun on the actual day. And the answer is: Nothing. Ha! TGH and I haven't gone out on the actual day for years! Our plan was to do nothing. I had made a lovely pot roast for dinnner, and then TGH and I retired to to the living room to do nothing on Valentines Day. I got the book I've been reading and plopped down on the couch for some serious 'bum-sitting' and TGH sank into a chair to play a game online with the laptop. My 17 yr old daughter marched in and stiffly sat down in the chair across from me. I look up, to see her glaring at me. "What?" I ask. "What are you guys planning to do for Valentine's Day," she asks, sternly. "We did it, already," I answer. "Dad gave me flowers, I gave him a card, we ate dinner, now it's over." "WHAT?" she asks, incredulous. "That's IT?" "Um, yeah, " I respond, calmly. "Where's the date? Where's the romance? You have to DO something!" she insists. "No, I don't." I state. She jumped to her feet and insisted that I follow her. So, I did. I am led to my own bedroom, where she hauls me in by the arm and shuts the door. Once she has me in, along with my other daughters, I am given a lecture on marriage, romance and how to keep a husband. (Which I am probably confused about, having only been married for 22 years) Then, she marches me out the door and back into the living room. "Put your coat on," I tell TGH, "We're going out." He peers up over the edge of the laptop, "What?" "We're going out," I say," for Valentines Day." "Why?" he asks. "Because our marriage is in trouble," I say tiredly, "and we have to save romance." Too his credit (I think) he got up, shut the computer, and found his jacket. "Where are we going?" he (justifiably) wants to know. "I have no idea. Let's go." We head for the door, collecting TGH glasses, my purse and keys. As we are heading out to the Jeep, our daughter called, "Don't be home early! Have FUN! Be ROMANTIC!"  And we headed out into the night, to save our relationship.

(Where did we go? What did we do? Did we save our marriage? Check back tomorrow for the thrilling conclusion to this harrowing tale of a marriage saved! Romance rekindled! And Valentine's Day observed...)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The results are in!

In case any of you were dying from anticipation, we are sorry to announce the duck did not win the second grade "valentine receptacle" contest. Apparently, it was beaten by a football field (people in this town are crazy for the local college team), a penguin made from an oatmeal container, and a giant caterpillar made of tissue paper. Miss 7 and the duck are doing well, spirits are still high.
The duck did receive honorable mention from Miss 7's teacher, who especially liked the "insert valentines in the hind end of the duck" feature.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentines Day Post

Happy Valentines Day!:) If you think you know me, you probably think I love this holiday. I'm happily married to a great guy, and what could be nicer than having a Valentine on Valentines Day? On the other hand, if you don't have a Valentine, this holiday could be somewhat awkward. hmmmm....

I don't love this holiday. I don't normally go around admitting it, but I don't love a lot of holidays. They've all got problems as far as I'm concerned...

St. Patrick's Day?  What the heck are we doing? Some of us may be Irish, I admit, but seriously, who in the world thinks wearing green, drinking green beer and pinching each other constitutes a holiday?

April Fools? Are you kidding me? (no pun intended)

How did we end up with a Bunny for Easter? And if I somehow can buy the whole bunny thing, is the next logical step actually a bunny who delivers Chicken Eggs and Candy? Oh yeah, that whole thing just screams "rabbit-like". And if that's not enough, we form their cute little images in chocolate and gobble them up. That's not wierd? And gross?

I make no secret of the fact I'm not a Halloween fan. Let me sum up my feelings: We're decorating with two of the most ghastly colors on the planet, scaring the crap out of each other, mutilating innocent squash and begging for food in disguise. Hmmmm.....

And then we have V-day. Last year my daughter, Jessica, came home from school a few days before the day and announced that she would now be home-schooled as she was unable to attend the elementary school any longer. Being a mom of girls, I am used to dramatic declarations and have become immune to them. I said, "ok". She said, "I mean it Mom, I'm not going back!" "Ok, " says I. A few silent moments pass. She tries again, " You'll homeschool me, right?" "Right, " I agree. She looks at me a minute and then announces, "I was embarrassed until death, today!" AH ha! Now we are getting somewhere.  Turns out, she and a boy in the class have been good friends and wanted to exchange cards they had made for each other. They did it before the Day, in a quiet ceremony before school. Word got out. The teacher, later in the day, asks the children to please bring a Valentine for everyone in the class and not exclude any classmates.  A girl (jealous?) raises her hand and blurts in a loud voice, "What about Jessica and X? (not his real name, I don't actually remember his name and I'm not asking) They already gave each other Valentines they MADE!" The class is shocked by the declaration. The boy in question did not speak to Jessica for the remainder of the day and Jessica's friends had the audacity to giggle about it in front of her face, apparently thinking the whole thing a funny joke.  This year, Jessica is playing it close to the vest. One store bought Valentine for all.

I bought my Valentine a card and a small gift. I happen to know (because he admitted it) that he did not buy me a card or a gift. He'll probably pick one up when he goes for milk tomorrow.

My POINT is, that he loves me, whether or not there is a Holiday for it. Easter is a Christian holiday, whether or not you tack a rabbit to it and there is no such thing as St Patrick's Day. (altho I do advise wearing green on March 17 so as to avoid pinching) AND I know I cannot convince anyone about's only me defending the defenseless pumpkin and protesting the begging of sweets off the neighbors.

P.S. I love the 4th of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas and I don't mind Flag Day, or Memorial Day. I do not get Labor Day, but it must be important, we get the whole dang day off and that doesn't happen with V-day, OR Halloween!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Blond Jokes

I know, blonde jokes have so little to do with anything really. However I love them. I love sharing them and hearing them. My family and friends call and e-mail them to me whenever they hear a new one. I have a friend on Facebook who has been posting them lately and I have been stealing them to re-post. I like to think she is posting them just for me. In college I actually bought a poster and hung it on my dorm wall so I could read it over and over. My kids love to tell me blonde jokes too.

I don't know why I love them. Maybe it is because I am blonde....and usually pretty smart. I do have a college degree, I have never painted a porshe instead of a porch. I have never locked myself out of a convertible with the top down and I have never gotten a ticket when stopped by the police (probably because I am blonde). I just love the idea of blonde jokes. So here are a few of my favorites...

How do you know if a blonde has been using your computer? There is white out on the screen.

There was this bar and in the bar there was a magic mirror.

If you told a lie it would suck you in.

One day a brunette walked into this bar. She walked up to the mirror and said 'I think I'm the most beautiful woman in the world' and it sucked her in.

The next day a redhead walked into the bar. She walked up to the mirror and said 'I think I'm the most beautiful woman in the world' and it sucked her in.

Then the next day a blond walked into the bar. She walked up to the mirror and said 'I think...' and it sucked her in.

Why did the blonde get fired from the m&m factory? She kept throwing away the w's.

Blonde jokes are awesome. For the record, blondes are not dumb, but the jokes are and that's what makes people laugh.

Feel free to share your favorite blonde joke. I'll be laughing. :)

Date Night, Cause That's the Way We Roll

Friday! Today, I am going to demonstrate, "How to Go on a Date With Your Husband You Have Been Married To For 22 Years". I'm sure everyone will benefit from today's lesson. Today's installment will NOT feature ridiculous amounts of children. That is NOT the way we roll....Whew! Unless you're disappointed, and then, I'm sorry.

Tonight is Date Night. And, like the recently released movie starring Steve Carell and Tina Fey, TGH and I are often concerned that our date nights lack a  Don't get me wrong, nothing more romantic than looking into one another's eyes at the Panda Express over Orange Chicken and Pepsi's but sometimes we wonder. Are we missing something here? We're not quite ready for New York and a government sex scandal (maybe next week) but maybe we ought to branch out. So far this week, we've had the following conversation, about 10 times:

TGH: Did you wanna do something this weekend? (A note here, TGH and I have gone out every Friday night for the last 15 years)
Me: Sure, what do you want to do? (note: with few exceptions, every Friday night for the last 15 years we have gone to a budget based dinner and then seen a movie)
TGH: I thought we'd have dinner, maybe see a movie. (see above 'note')
Me: Ok, sounds good.
TGH: Where should we eat?

Here's where the real excitement is. We eat at LOTS of different places! Seriously! We do! We eat everywhere, Chinese Buffets, Steak Houses, Thai shacks, Taco Huts, Burger Joints, Mexican Fiesta-rants, and Italian (I'm dying to say 'bistros' here, but that would be an outrageous lie) places (way more truthful). We've eaten at Chili's and Appleby's and Fuddruckers (the most carefully pronounced restaurant in these parts). We really pull out all the stops in choosing our pre-dollar movie eatery.

Then the movie, again, there is no limit to the kind of movie we will choose. If it's playing at the dollar movies, we will see it!

You know, I take it back, our date nights ROCK! Cause we are Mr and Mrs Date Night and that's the way we roll!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Dad, a Daughter, and a Duck

Here's a math problem. What do you get when you cross a dad, a daughter, and a duck with Valentine's Day?

This creation is the result of Miss 7's classroom project/contest to make the best Valentine "Receptacle." Miss 7 and I were thinking something in a star shape with glitter, maybe made out of paper mache. Then dad stepped in. Dad is a duck hunter. An avid duck hunter. An I-can't-stay-home-for-a single-Saturday-morning duck hunter. So, naturally he offered Miss 7 the use of one of his decoys for this project.

Look at the way they cut the tail feathers, so you can put the Valentine cards inside.

(Right where the sun don't shine.)

I am speechless. Is it cute? Is it hideous? Should I let her take it to school?

There is no choice really. They are so proud of the work they have done.

I kiss them both and say good job!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I said No!

I said no today. A woman, a perfectly nice woman I have only met once, called today and asked me to fill in for her at chess club at the elementary school. Normally, usually I would have said sure, yes, or no problem. No matter that I have to pick up my own four kids from school at three different times, plus 4 after school daycare kids. No matter I am watching a friends toddlers who just had surgery. No matter that I have like a zillion loads of laundry to do, prescription to pick up for my mother in law and dinner to cook. No matter that it will conflict with the DI team I am running or the Scout troop I am helping chair. All of those things can wait, I normally tell myself when someone calls.
On a typical day I would have said yes. Then I would have scrambled to make it work, all the while cursing my inability to say no. But today for no explicable reason when she called, I said no. I feel like saying it again and again. At first I did think the guilt might kill me, I almost called her back. I even picked up the phone but then I looked around at the laundry I was trying to fold and the chicken marinating on the counter and thought I am a strong woman. I can say no once in while. Not every time, this one time I said No.

Glam versus Gross

In my mind, I'm glamorous and beautiful. Elegant and graceful. I am gliding through life with the whisper of rose petals following my diaphanous self.

In real life, I've got boogers on my shirt. They were placed there by a child who had them oozing out of their nose and ran up to me as if to give me a big hug. I, being a moron, fell for it and now have the offensive bodily whatever stuck to my shirt. Oh, sure I wiped off what I could. And sure, I could have changed my shirt. And sure, while I was in the bedroom with the door shut, changing my shirt, I could have just kissed the house goodbye... AND how much laundry can I really be doing? If I changed my shirt everytime something happened to it...boogers, spit, peanut butter, graham cracker goo, milk, formula etc, I'd be in my bedroom all day long and while that is one way to live, it's not exactly what I'm paid to do by trusting parents who drop off their drooling darlings into my experienced care. 

In real life, (which by the way I do not recommend generally, Denial* being a way more glamorous place to hang out) I am round, given to embarrassing myself in public, and smell of Obsession and Diet Pepsi, when I do not smell like peanut butter. I'm not too bad to look at, I suppose, especially if you're 4 and you see me making cookies. I think it may be my best look.

So, until my book sells, and Kelly Ripa calls me up to be on her show, I'm not worrying about my shirt in real life. In my mind, however, I have my elegant, diaphanous outfit all ready to go.

*Denial: A lovely, warm vacation spot with nice hotels, handsome cabana boys who bring you cold Diet Pepsi, comfortable chairs and not a booger in sight.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

There are reasons for staying married. My current number one reason? Chili Rellenos.

Delicious chili peppers, stuffed with cheese, breaded and fried.

When my husband took his first job after law school and we moved to a new place where I didn't know anyone, I was in a bit of a slump. I actually really like moving, but it always takes me a little while to warm up to a place-- hence the slump. After we had lived in this new town for a little while, my husband, knowing how I love Mexican food, took me to a little restaurant named Mama Inez. My first bite of chili relleno was heaven. Seriously, it was the perfect taste. "Oh, now I can be glad we moved here!" I said between bites. Somehow, it became the turning point, where I began to love our new home.

So, my husband went on a business trip last weekend, back to this town. It was a quick trip. He had a couple of meetings, lunch with his old boss, and he was back on the road. He called me when he was about half way home. To tell me he had something for me in the car.

Chili Rellenos. From Mama Inez. Ohhhh, Yummy!

And that is why we are married.

Monday, February 7, 2011

My Super Powers

Every one has a Super Power. Not everyone can fly or deflect bullets or jump over a speeding building, but we all have something. For example, I have a sister in law who can catch barf. Seriously. If one of her kids barfs, she can catch it BEFORE it hits the floor. Wow. I have another sister in law who can stretch a dollar so far, there is no metaphor for the phenomena. My mom could make a meal, any meal, out of a pound of hamburger. Pizza, tacos, spagetti, fried chicken...ok, i'm kidding about the pizza...:) My friend Leslie's kid is so smart, I'm actually considering sending her my kids... And if you think these things aren't powers, go ahead and try them. For myself, I have never been able to stop my kids from throwing up on carpet, my dollars do whatever the heck they want and while I'm good with hamburger, I'm not 'fried chicken' good.

But I do have a Super Power. Two, actually. The one I'm going to tell you about is my ability to clean anything off of anything. No freaking kidding. If I can't get it off, it's not coming off. Ink? I know 3 ways to get it out of clothing, and 2 more ways to get it off the wall. Blood. For beginners. Grease? Child's play. Crayons? Lipstick in the dryer? Gum? I can get them all. Out. Of whatever you got them on. I've removed gum from hair (without cutting), carpet, and clothes. I've gotten  lipstick-in-the-dryer stains out of khaki pants. I can get bodily function stains out of ANYTHING. Poop, barf, blood, you name it, I can remove it.

Just yesterday, I removed 3 quarts of cooking oil from the floor, two chairs, a cabinet door and a skirt. I once removed a gallon of white paint from dark brown carpet. As in, you cannot tell where it happened.

I appreciate this power, for the obvious reasons, but I don't love this power. I wish mine was the Power of Prevention. How much nicer would it be to have stopped the oil spill, or the paint disaster.  Or the great Poop Catastrophe of '05. (I thought we would have to move....) But if you can't be the ounce of Prevention, you can be the pound of Cure. That's me.

Just think for a minute, what is your Power? You know you have one. Maybe you are a skilled organizer of drawers and closets or an expert iron-er. (I have never, and I mean never, ironed without burning myself) Maybe you keep your temper or you never go shopping looking homeless. These are powers, people. Own them, use them, brag about them. And tell me so I can be jealous:)

Friday, February 4, 2011

How to Take Kids To Scrapbook Club

This is the first in what I expect will be a series of "how-to's" involving ridiculous amounts of children. If you don't have children, or ridiculous amounts of children, you may consider me a warning. Of what? I'm not sure yet....

So, step 1. Announce in a loud and excited voice that you will all be 'going for a ride!' Children will promptly race out the front door into the freezing cold sans shoes and coats.

Step 2. Herd all children back into the house, hoping that your neighbors do not see you.

Step 3. Start putting on shoes. Start with the baby. She is 18 months old and apparently just learned how to take off shoes. Put her shoes on again. and again. and again.

Step 4. Switch the shoes on all the 4 yr olds feet. They are all on the wrong feet. No one is wearing socks.  Put their socks on, then their shoes. Put shoes back on the baby.

Step 5. Find keys. Good luck.

Step 6. Take the baby, and her shoes out to the van. Open the van with the spare set of keys. Buckle the baby into her carseat and put on her shoes.

Step 7. Go back into the house. Tell 4 yr olds it's time to go. Start out to the van. Stop boy from throwing 'missiles' (aka expensive landscape rocks) at passing neighbors. Stop girl from filling mailbox with grass, dirt, flowers, snow, whatever. Put 4 yr olds into the van, Buckle. Put shoes back on the baby.

Step 8. Go back to house. Start out to van with 2 yr old, but  there's a smell. Change 2 yr old, head out to van. Buckle 2 yr old. Unbuckle 4 yr old who needs to use potty. Crap. They ALL need to go potty. Unbuckle. Back to house.

Step 9. Go potty.

Step 10. Back to van. Buckle everyone, put shoes on baby. Realize you don't have your purse. Back to house.

Step 11. Get purse. Back out to van.

Step 12. Smell a smell. Unbuckle baby and take her in for diaper change. Back out to van.

Step 13. Wonder if you might be in the wrong profession. I mean, how hard can rocket science BE? And it's GOT to be less stressful.

Step 14. How can there even be 14 steps? Even recovery programs for ADDICTIONS only have 12. And you're not even to the stupid Scrapbook club yet. AND you haven't gotten a Pepsi yet.

Step 15. Serve as a warning to others. Eat a donut.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I want to post about my new van- but I have to say I hate to update my sis's last post because it is the most hilarious thing I've ever read. So, go ahead and read my post- but check out my sis's last post about mood swings, too. Because, like I said, *hilarious*!

That said, about the van.
Sometimes you have to get a new van before you want to.
I am a huge fan of the 'get an old car and drive the wheels off' philosophy. But sometimes, accidents happen and philosophies change. ahem. Like when you kill your old 93 Astro van that you love. I recently and unintentionally totalled my dear Astro van.
Wrecked. Gone. Adios. Vaya con Dios.
So, Saturday, my not-even-angry-though-I-wrecked-the-van husband and I went shopping for another van. Let me just say that if you are not ready for an SUV, a Suburban, or a van the size of a small school bus, a mini-van that seats 8 passengers can be hard to find. There are only a few out there. We are expecting baby 5 and plan to drive carpools of children, so there is no way we can go less than 8. We could go more, but I am not quite ready for the size of the above mentioned behemoths.
We started out optimistic in the morning, following a good lead, not understanding the elusive nature of the 8-passenger minivan. At the first dealership, we were told the van sold the night before. Rats.
Eight hours later, after a marathon search across our state, we found one and only one used 8-seater Toyota Sienna. We lifted our weary heads in joy and bought that van immediately.
Thank you, thank you, Toyota for making a minivan that seats 8. Keep up the good work.
And please, please, new van, don't be a lemon and die before we pay for you.

Define: Mood Swing

As a woman with hormones, I have found that I often hop on a fun ride called the 'Mood Swing'. I probably ride this ride because it is free.

I can tell when I'm on this interesting ride when I look lovingly at my family, and I'm thinking, 'I love these people!' And I'm full of good will and happiness. And then I look again and I think, 'Idiots.'  This is a swing. You go up up up and there is sweetness and light and happiness and good will and we love♥ one another and people pitch in to work together for family unity. And then there is down, down, down where people are stupid, messy, goofy, dum-heads who wreck my house and eat my food and never appreciate one stupid thing I do and I do it all and they never even say thank-you....oh, they said thank you. This is because they are wonderful, loving, helpful, cute smart, good children, and I have a wonderful husband....who just ATE THE LAST COOKIE and didn't even ask if I wanted it and he knows how much I love those things and if he really loved me he would care for one minute about my feelings and I'm just a slave to him. I don't even know why I married this dork in the first place, when it's obvious he's a greedy pig....who just offered to go get pizza. How I love him. Just when I'm ready to go mad, there he is, offering to get pizza and get me a diet Pepsi and he is so good looking. I 'm so lucky to have this wonderful man in my life, My life rocks!:)

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is a fun ride.