Thursday, February 28, 2008

4th grade PMS????

This came home in my daughters backpack yesterday. It's a card her best friend made for her and it cracked me up!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Foohy to the Democrats!

Matt Sullivan/Reuters

Here's my review on last night's debate - BOring!!!!!! It started off with both of them going on and on about their health care plans which are almost identical and which neither one will get passed by congress if they make it to the office. It got worse from there. I did leave it on for the entire 90 minutes - or however long it lasted - and tried to pay attention.

What was more on my mind, honestly, was my son's confession at dinner of stealing Foohys out of his friend's desk. WHAT?! Yes. My son is a criminal in the making. No, what is a Foohy? Oh. A Foohy is a little bald guy with big ears and something coming out of the top of his head that you can stick on the end of your pencil and erase with. Here's what it looks like:

Wait a minute - - they're not bald guys - - they're "monkey heads!"

I digress. What has gotten into my son? Why is a kid, who has way too much already, fixating on something as silly as this and feeling deprived? Last night he had to write a letter of apology to his friend (at least three sentences long) and stick it in an envelope along with the stolen Foohys and return them today. After he finished his letter, he put himself to bed early (he always does this when he gets in trouble). He seems pretty remorseful but my husband says it could just be remorsefulness of getting caught. I hope not.

So the only issue that Hillary and Barack could've captured my interest with last night was their plans for keeping six year old boys on track and out of juvenile correction facilities. For some reason, that didn't get brought up...........

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The only way to fix this...

A week from today is the two month mark for bringing home our dog. For those of you who haven't been following, it's been rough. He's not exactly the dog I envisioned for our family. He's what they call "shy" which means he freaks out at everything. He's scared of riding in the car, he's scared of walking near a car, he's scared of eating outside his crate, he's scared of balloons, he's scared of the cat, he's scared if you drop something, he's even scared of playing, sometimes! I could go on and on!

I've learned a lot about what to do and what not to do when choosing a dog but that doesn't help me much now. I'm stuck with Pichu for two reasons:

1. My parents took back Captain when I was around six and it devestated me so there's no way I'm going to do this to my kids!

2. I can't live with the knowledge of what it will do to Pichu. He's slowly trusting and bonding with us and to pull the rug out from under him would just be cruel. The guilt would kill me.

So that means the only solution is to travel back in time and do it over. I'm thinking about buying Uncle Rico's Time Machine..........

Monday, February 25, 2008

I'm belligerent!

I woke up on the wrong side of the bed today. Everything has been getting on my nerves, from innocent (albeit annoying) spam from my friends, to the strangers out on MySpace, to my neurotic dog, to Ralph Nader. I have been sending out poison emails and making bitchy comments on people's blogs all day. I really need to shut up and keep my opinions to myself when I get like this (I've been advised of this on more than one occassion)! To all of you who have been on the receiving end of my righteous rants or catty, sarcastic comments, know that I regret saying 99.9% of them and, unfortunately, you will probably not have seen the last of them. I don't seem to be capable of learning from my mistakes in this area.

There's good news, though. It seems my dark cloud is lifting and I have this blog to thank for it. I was trying to get a picture of myself looking belligerent to post with this entry and instead ended cracking myself up. Check out what I captured:

This one looks a little Neanderthal-like.

These two look more Klingon-ish to me!

Sunday, February 24, 2008


I've moved around a lot in my life and have no problems making new friends. What I'm really bad at is keeping old ones. It seems, when I move, my life changes and people who I used to have so much to talk about with, all of a sudden seem like strangers. After a few awkward conversations we both implicitly decide to fade into each other's pasts.

There are a handful of people out there that I keep in touch with and I am so grateful to have them in my life. My friend, Stacie and I met at Ohio State when we joined a band for non-music majors. We were classified as the two worst flute players and we totally didn't care! We hit it off right away and loved to go out and just be goofy. She teased the boyfriend I had at the time mercilessly. It would crack me up (he was kinda pathetic, after all)! When I finally broke up with him, she helped me celebrate. Then, when I met my future husband, she was there gushing about how gorgeous he was (He still is).

It was easy to stay in touch when I graduated because I stayed in Columbus (Stacie is four years younger so she still had a ways to go). It got harder once I moved away and started a new job. Her life took her into a young marriage and pregnancy right away. This is us shortly before I moved away in 1993.

It's been twenty years since we've met. She's been through two divorces and had two kids - one's a teenager now. She's struggling as a single mom but is totally turning her life around after a WAY ugly divorce. She looks better than I've ever seen her and at least ten years younger than she actually is (at least from what I can tell on MySpace). I've been happily married for seventeen years, am working part-time, and look every bit of my forty three years. I'm living in a small town far away from her. You'd think we'd drift apart or have nothing in common at this point. Maybe we don't but we're connected in some way and she is one of my most cherished friends. She never forgets to call me on my birthday! That's more than I can say about some family members (Greg, I mean you).

So what's my point? I don't know! I guess I'm happy to have a friend like Stacie around! You're the best, Stace, and I'm your biggest fan! :)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

A well-loved bunny

This bunny was given to my daughter when she was a baby. When my son came along, three years later, she decided to put it in his crib. Not long after she did that, he bonded with it completely. He holds it while he sucks his thumb. One of the ears has a hole that he dug through with his other thumb. When he was about three, I decided to repair the ear and THAT did not go over so well. I actually had to cut a hole in the repaired ear so that he could continue to hold it the way he used to. I know you're supposed to discourage the thumb sucking and that the longer I let it go on, the more likey, braces will be in the cards. I can't help it though, he looks so sweet. He's still my baby even though he's six. I'm not going to say a word and, if he brings "Pink" on his honeymoon, then his wife can complain to me, the mother of all mother-in-laws! :)

I saw a book on Amazon called Dirty Wow Wow and Other Love Stories: A Tribute to the Threadbare Companions of Childhood that inspired me to take some photos for the scrapbook:

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Going on a limb...

I have just watched the Yes We Can video for about the zillionth time and a conversation with my brother replayed from earlier today. He accused me of being brainwashed by the "cult of personality," Barack Obama. So much so that he thinks I am now blinded in my judgment to choose the best candidate.

While watching this video and being conscious of the feelings it invokes in me, I began to wonder how what Barack says and inspires is different from other great leaders from the past (Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Ghandi, Ronald Reagan, etc., etc.) have said. Everyone can agree that these were great leaders who said inspiring things. Did people roll their eyes back then and accuse them of the same thing my brother accused Barack Obama of doing? Was everything they said a platitude based on ideals without any substance behind them?

I ask you all to cast aside your cynicism and really listen to what Barack Obama is offering this country. Put yourself on a limb and don't play it safe. This is not about voting for a particular party or a particular race. It's about healing this country and restoring the world's faith in us. If this country is lucky enough to elect Barack Obama things will change for the better. Mark my word.

My "sick" daughter

My daughter is home sick today. Well, she has a "temperature" of 99.8 anyway. Here's how the day has gone so far:

We've been out of toilet paper since yesterday so I borrowed her tissues to put on my toilet. Apparently she was not pleased with this, even though there are tissues everywhere else in the house and she has not been in her room since she woke up, so she took them back and put them on her desk and then left her room. I discovered they were gone from the bathroom after having a nice leisurely morning poop so I had to walk all the way to her bedroom to get something to wipe. TMI???

THEN, I let the dog out and back in so there would be no accidents and told her I was going to take a quick shower. I had told her earlier that she should not let the animals in and out since she was sick and the cold air would not do her any good; especially in her flimsy nightgown. About five minutes into my shower she came into the bathroom and said her cat really needed to come in!!!! This is a cat that usually spends the entire day outside while she's at school. I asked her where she left the dog and she said she let him outside. Apparently she could disregard what I said to let the dog out, but couldn't to let the cat in. On top of that, it had to all be resolved during the middle of my ten minute shower. That's when I kinda lost it....

She is currently on the bed reading a book behind me and letting out the most obnoxious, gross-sounding farts I have ever heard come from a nine year old's butt. She's also rubbing her feet together back and forth and the sound is causing my right eye to twitch. I'm trying my best not to react as I type this.

It's not even 11am so I will be repeating the following mantra for the rest of the day - "I love my daughter. I love me daughter. I love my daughter......."

Monday, February 18, 2008

Australian cyclone

My little brother in the Air Force is currently stationed in Exmouth, Australia and is getting hit with Tropical Cyclone Nicholas. He called me yesterday and didn't seem too phased by it. I on the other hand am panicking from the other side of the planet. He has enough food and water for a few days. I asked him if he came up with a plan for tornados or flooding. He didn't! I'm going to be sitting on pins and needles until the thing passes. Here's the current map:

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Birthdays, movies, and hoity toity offices

Today is my birthday!! Happy birthday to me!! I began celebrating yesterday when I arranged* for my husband to take me out to my favorite restaurant and to see the movie Juno. It was a good movie but had me squirming in my seat a bit. Having gone through two adoptions, the desperation I saw in the adoptive mother reminded me of how I must've looked when I met the birth mothers of my children. I also wondered if my husband felt as forced into a situation he wasn't ready for as the husband in the movie. One thing I was happy to see the movie get right was how difficult and selfless it is for birth mothers to do what they do. Not only do they not take the easy way out (an abortion) but they suffer through a pregnancy that they have no reward for in the end. I am truly grateful that there are people out in the world like this! Our story, by the way, has a WAY happier ending than the adoptive couple on the screen!

We had an hour to kill between dinner and the movie and being in the small town we are in, there weren't many options of things to do. My husbands office with his slot car race track was within walking distance so we decided to go there and surf the net and play slot cars. I snapped these photos in his gorgeous new digs (he moved into this building last summer) while he watched some silly ski sock puppets on his computer. We never did play slot cars!

This is the lobby where students sometimes sit and study. My husband's office is through that door behind the second red chair.

There is always a fresh arrangement on this table.

I took some self-portraits in the posh bathroom (I'll need to photoshop out the air freshener), and the stairwell (my favorite).

I'm going to spend the rest of the day scrapbooking and will post some pages in future days.....

*arranged means I had the idea, made the dinner reservation, procured a babysitter, found the movie and called to find the times. If I don't do all this, I never get to go out!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

My art teacher wasn't like this....

My kids have the best art teacher! She teaches them the history behind different types of art at the same time as letting them experiment with the different types of media. She puts together museum quality exhibits made by her students throughout the year too. The coolest thing is seeing what the students create and knowing that there were no adults "helping" the end product to look perfect and it still does! I have been framing them as they bring them home and will have quite a showcase by the time they finish elementary school. Here's a few my first grader just came home with:

The one above is entitled "Picasso Cubist Face."

This one is called "Green Crab." Can you see him?! I am retracting the entry I posted questioning my son's artistic abilities.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day, robots!

The cool things about this video are:
  • I love stories about robots/androids. I think it goes back to my early teenage years when I read a book called The Silver Metal Lover and it captured my heart.
  • The band singing (Coparck) is Dutch. I lived in the Netherlands for a year after High School and love all that is Dutch!
  • It's a great song.
  • The video is funny and charming at the same time.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

John McCain = Mr. Potter

This is a quote from John McCain that I believe he said yesterday,

"Hope, my friends, is a powerful thing. I can attest to that better than many, for I have seen men's hopes tested in hard and cruel ways that few will ever experience. And I stood astonished at the resilience of their hope in the darkest of hours because it did not reside in an exaggerated belief in their individual strength, but in the support of their comrades, and their faith in their country. My hope for our country resides in my faith in the American character, the character which proudly defends the right to think and do for ourselves, but perceives self-interest in accord with a kinship of ideals, which, when called upon, Americans will defend with their very lives.

To encourage a country with only rhetoric rather than sound and proven ideas that trust in the strength and courage of free people is not a promise of hope. It is a platitude."

To me, he sounds like a cynical, bitter, old man, whose spirit, Washington has crushed. Individuals DO have the power to enact change. It's not an "exaggerated belief." Those in power do not want to admit, let alone encourage the masses to believe this. It threatens them.

John McCain is an honorable, brave American whose service to this country I admire. But listening to him yesterday, he reminded me of Mr. Potter from Frank Capra's "It's a Wonderful Life." I believe George Bailey said it best when he told Mr. Potter, "You sit around here and you spin your little webs and you think the whole world revolves around you.... In the whole vast configuration of things, I'd say you were nothing but a scurvy little spider." I say, "...and that goes for you too, Washington political elites!"

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

My ballot is cast!

In the past two days, I've received calls from Barack Obama (who just asked me to vote and didn't try to convince me that he should get my vote), Mike Huckabee, John McCain, Virginia Governor, Tim Kaine (asking me to vote for Obama) and an organization called Common Sense Issues who made me take this bogus "poll" that was really just a swiftboat attack against John McCain and in support of Mike Huckabee. The only one who hasn't called is Hillary! I guess she's given up on getting Virginia! Fortunately, my mind was already made up. Those of you in Virginia who are still undecided, watch this:

Saturday, February 9, 2008

This is Kellie!

Doesn't she look fun? If you ever get a chance to meet her, you'll know she totally is - and so is her shop! It's called Kellie's Gift Boutique and it's in Fairfield, Virginia. Her personality definitely comes through in her shop and this woman has creative ideas out the wazoo! If you're a vendor of unique items in the Southwest Virginia area, you definitely need to talk to her about business opportunities!

I had lunch with her there yesterday and snapped these photos in between bites of the best sandwiches from Blue Sky Bakery.

I can't go into her shop without getting something! Check out my cool shades and the necklace and earrings! I snapped up a couple of Lil'Kinz for Valentine's Day (50% off). My favorite purchase yesterday, these fun shoelaces from Little Missmatched. Check 'em out!

I think my daughter's birthday party is going to have a mismatched theme. The possibilities are endless!

She also carries jewelry, purses, home decor accessories, candles from Beanpod Candles, yummy chocolates, I could go on and on but instead, let me just show you a few displays I snapped:

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Valentines and sunsets

I was steeling myself for the Valentines project next week until I opened my son's homework folder today and the assignment was, "Address all your Valentines and return them to school on Friday." Yikes! I had to switch into high gear and get them printed out on the computer. Thank goodness I had a Powerpoint file ready to print and cardstock on hand to print them on, and the crayon hearts already melted and cooled! Guess what? This time the perfect world in my head meshed with reality! My son addressed them all happily and assembled them without a hitch! So you know what I say to the manufacturers of Sponge Bob Valentines? HA!

On a sidenote, I must also share this beautiful sunset I captured out our front window today.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Last year I spent entirely too much time making my kids' Valentines. In my mind, it was supposed to be me gathering all the pieces/parts and them putting them all together but, of course it never plays out like what I imagine in the perfect little world inside my head. The kids lost interest after two or three and I was happy that they did because they weren't doing it right anyway (translation: the way I wanted them done). The little bugs said "I don't mean to 'bug' you, but will you be my Valentine?" Check out the squadron we amassed!

The bubblegum men had mouths made of Smarties and said, "Stick with me!" Very corny humor only appreciated by elementary aged children. We had a battalion of these guys too but they were hard to stand up and get a picture of. Did their classmates appreciate getting them? I have no idea. I hope that they at least took them home for their mothers to admire!

The lesson learned? Keep it simple, right? So why can't I just go to the local drug store and buy a silly box of Spongebob valentines and be done with it?! There's something inside me that won't let it happen. Plan B? Buy silicone heart shaped molds and peel about 100 crayons and break them up to melt in the heart molds. My fingernails are wrecked! I still have to print out the card stock that will say, "You color my world" or alternately "Be my Valentine for 'crayon' out loud!" Then my angelic children will assemble them and address them, right? We'll see. I'll post pics soon! :)

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Yes We Can!

Come on American! Let's all make the right choice on this Super Tuesday!

Monday, February 4, 2008

I'm the Heely Nazi

Ever since Christmas Break, my son has been asking if he can wear his Heelys to school. I could just picture him flying down the hallways at break neck speeds to impress his friends and have repeatedly told him no. Recently, he has started reporting the daily list of kids who wore Heelys in order to get me to change my mind. I didn't believe him until I saw it for myself one day! I emailed the principal that very evening and asked what the school policy was and she said that it was allowed as long as you didn't roll with them. Give me a break! What six year old is going to wear wheels on the bottom of his shoes and then tip toe around all day without using them?! I knew I'd be setting my son up for failure, if I let him wear his so, what did I do? I got the principal to change the policy to ban them altogether! She joked and asked me if she could say the rule was initiated because of me. I had to laugh. My kids would be shunned by every kid in school for sure! As a kid, I used to live in fear that my parents would do something like this and I'd lose what little popularity I had. In my reply to my children's principal, I recommended that she not only plaster my name on the new policy but she should also threaten that any kid caught with them on would have their Heelys confiscated by me and I would throw them in my boiling cauldron! I should also have suggested the post script, "Any parents who thought it was a good idea to send their kids to school in Heelys in the first place should get a clue." That way, not only would my kids be unpopular but I could join them in being ostracized.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

A day with the girls

I was invited to a Mary Kay party yesterday. I wasn't really too interested in the makeover and just wanted an excuse to get out and be social. The others there were all from my exercise class at work and this was the first time I got to see them in another setting and get to know them better. They were so much fun and it was a great way to talk and "be girly" and have a good time. Check out Denise's lashes! (sorry, Denise, I gotcha before you had a chance to wipe off that extra mascara on your eyelid ;)

Denise was our hostess and uses the product but the main reason she hosted the event was to get this watch. These companies are always dangling something that you can't get any other way except to hostess. It drives me crazy. It is a pretty watch, though....

One of the women brought her daughter who is sixteen years old. She was so sweet! I love it when a teenager can hang out with adults and not act like they're being tortured. She has a cell phone and showed us the creative way she takes close-up pictures of things to put as her wallpaper on the phone kinda like this (it's a Mary Kaye box):

When the make-over session was done and the Mary Kaye lady finished schpeel about hosting a party or becoming a consultant, blah, blah, blah, we all started talking about how hungry we were and made a break for the local diner. The diner was a perfect ending with good food and good company. I have to show you their most popular desert because this blew me away.

It's the fried twinkie and oreo cookie! How bad can this be for you!? Something made out of artificial everything, covered in pancake batter and dunked in grease. After that they drown it in chocolate and strawberry syrup and whipped cream. I actually saw one of 'em come out of the kitchen and it was a sight to see!

Friday, February 1, 2008

The Famous Stacie

I love this girl! I just watched three of her videos and this one totally cracked me up! I also loved her Stay at Home Mom Superbowl RAP. I could be her, if I got a nose and chin job, and lost about 30 pounds, and started wearing colored contact lenses, and became cool, etc., etc., etc. I definitely relate to what she's saying here! Go check out her YouTube channel for yourself here!