Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Bumper Sticker People

I know! Two vlogs in one day! But mainly because this was faster than trying to type it while Munch climbed all over me. And vecause I have pizza to make and drinks to mix. Happy New Year!! Be smart! Be safe and I'll catch you when I roll out from under the ball!

Wordless Wednesday

Showing me his muscles in his new "football gear."
Daddy's opinion of the football gear. (He's a Bills fan!)

Why do I feel like I might be sewing up some red and blue in the very near future?

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I'm a Little Weirded Out!

Peruvian Jesus born to Virgin Mary on Christmas

Mon Dec 29, 10:02 am ET Reuters

LIMA (Reuters) – Virgin Mary, a 20-year-old Peruvian woman, gave birth to a baby boy on Christmas day and named him Jesus, Peru's state news agency said on Friday.

The baby's father, Adolfo Jorge Huamani, 24, is a carpenter. Religious Peruvians compared him to Joseph the Carpenter in the Bible.

"Two thousand years later the story of Bethlehem is relived," read the headline about the birth in El Comercio, the main newspaper in Peru, a predominantly Catholic country.

The mother, Virgen Maria Huarcaya, delivered the 7.7 pound (3.5 kg) boy, Jesus Emanuel, in the early hours of Christmas at the central maternity hospital in Lima, the capital.

"A few days ago we had decided to name my son after a professional soccer player," the father said. "But thanks to a happy coincidence this is how things ended up."

(Reporting by Terry Wade; Editing by Vicki Allen)

So try to digest this. By coincidence, her name is Mary. He is a carpenter. And their son was born on Christmas.

I mean, sure why not name him Jesus Emanuel? I hope the children in Peru are kinder than the children in the States. That poor little guy would be in for some serious harassment don't you think? I think maybe they should have stuck with their original plan and named him after a soccer player but that's just my take. I'd love to know how you feel about it!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Pregnant for 20 years!

Arkansas family welcomes 18th child, a girl

Thu Dec 18, 8:46 pm ET

ROGERS, Ark. – An Arkansas woman has given birth to her 18th child. Michelle Duggar delivered the baby girl by Caesarean section Thursday at Mercy Medical Center in Rogers. The baby, named Jordyn-Grace Makiya Duggar, weighed 7 pounds, 3 ounces and was 20 inches long.

"The ultimate Christmas gift from God," said Jim Bob Duggar, the father of the 18 children.
"She's just absolutely beautiful, like her mom and her sisters."

The Duggars now have 10 sons and eight daughters.

Jim Bob Duggar said Michelle started having contractions Wednesday night. She needed the C-section, her third, because the baby was lying sideways. Jim Bob said both baby and mother were doing well Thursday night.

"We both would love to have more," he said.

The cable network TLC broadcasts a weekly show about the Duggars, called "17 Kids and Counting." Chris Finnegan of TLC — which handles public relations for the Duggar family — said the show's name would be updated to account for the latest addition to the family. He said TLC also will air a show Monday on the baby's delivery.

Jim Bob Duggar is 43, a year older than his wife. Their oldest child, Joshua, is 20.
The other Duggar children, in between Joshua and Jordyn-Grace, are Jana, 18; John-David, 18; Jill, 17; Jessa, 16; Jinger, 14; Joseph, 13; Josiah, 12; Joy-Anna, 11; Jeremiah, 9; Jedidiah, 9; Jason, 8; James, 7; Justin, 6; Jackson, 4; Johannah, 3; and Jennifer, 1.

"Our whole family is excited about Jordyn's addition to our family," Jim Bob Duggar said. "She's just perfect in every way."

(This version CORRECTS the name of the Duggars' TLC show to '17 Kids and Counting,' not 'Seventeen and Counting.'))

I went to an engagement party a few weeks ago and was toasting my friends because 2008 is the first year in five that I have not been pregnant for some portion of the year. I was happy. I was elated, delighted and thrilled.

You understand that this woman has been pregnant for some portion of every year for 20 years. She's 42. Almost half of her life has been spent being pregnant.

I love children. Mine make me crazy sometimes and I threaten to sell them at least once a day (if not hour as it seems lately!) but I love them just the same. I even help friends out by taking care of their children on a semi-regular basis. I worked in a day care center for 3 years and was responsible for up to 105 children. It wasn't the best job but I had fun and enjoyed the parents.

But PREGNANT for 20 years?!?!?!?! And they would "love to have more." Really? I guess at this point it's not really that big of a deal because you have built in babysitters so you can get a break on a pretty regular basis.

Morning sickness. For 20 years. Thank you but no! But you tell me, why would YOU avoid being pregnant for 20 years? Or are there some of you out there who are all on board with this?

20 YEARS, people!!

Dear Mrs. Claus...

I am appealing to you this year because we all know who the REAL power behind the sleigh is. I have to applaud you. If your elves are operating on even a third of the obnoxious scale my own "elves" are you are the real Saint in your family. And to play host to 8 smelly critters? Because we all know that the mom is the one who feeds and cleans up after them. Just gotta say that YOU are my hero.

I need some advice. I e-mailed my wish list to Daddy-O and it got inadvertently deleted - at least that's the story he's sticking too. Then I went through the sale flyers and made him a pictoral list which I found buried under a pile of pocket lint this morning. And he dared to ask me what I wanted for Christmas this morning! I'm sure you, oh, keeper of the cocoa and gingerbread, know what I'm getting at. May I please leave my list with you?

#1. See those really great boots? May I have those in black please?
#2. Those sweater turtlenecks would be great. Green, red and cream colored please. And if you could grabbed a couple pairs of Levis to go with them that would be great too!
#3. The printer pooped out. I would love one that would print straight from my camera's memory card.
#4. So the dog (a Christmas gift from 8 years ago?) has chewed the crap out of my comforter. Could I possibly get a new set that goes with the new paint? Some nice throw pillows and art for the wall would be great!
#5. A couple of pullover hoodies would be wonderful. I've lost two zipper pulls from my favorite hoodies and, well, they are ancient.
#6 & 7. I am officially the last person on the planet to own some version of an Ipod. And if I'm going to have one it would be helpful if I had a base to plug it into so that our entertaining on the deck would be a little more interesting.

#8. How great would it be if I could gather live footage for you and the Big Guy for your naughty and nice evaluations next year? So the whole DVD Recorder would be awesome (and it would get me some real brownie points with the grandparents)!
And finally #9. Imagine how much more blogging I could get done with a laptop completely decked out with a web camand wifi!!!! I could take multitasking to a whole new level! And you of all people should recognize how important that is.

I really appreciate you taking time to look at this for me. I know you are an incredibly busy lady this time of year - what with boots to trip over and elves to herd from work shop to work shop. If the big guy can only squeeze in one or two of those I have to say that the laptop and printer would be at the top!

Merry Christmas Mrs. C! I appreciate you!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I Wonder if She's Married.

NY Giants need a sack—to cover fan’s racy outfit
As if the NY Giants weren't having a tough enough time of it with Plaxico's nonsense, now their fans have gone crazy too!

Dec 15, 9:17 am EST
New York Giants need another sack—to cover a flamboyant fan who wears skimpy outfits.

Sondra Fortunato went to Giants Stadium last week wearing a Santa Claus outfit, a tiara, fishnet stockings, a bathing suit bottom and high-heeled boots.

She also had a suitcase and two 11-by-17 signs reading “Go Giants” and “Have a No Guns Christmas,” referring to the team’s wide receiver shooting himself in the leg.

She insists nothing naughty was showing even though she’s “well-endowed.” As the middle-aged woman puts it, “You couldn’t even see my underwear.”

The Giants apparently saw it another way.

Security escorted her out, saying signs and baggage weren’t allowed and telling her to cover up because there were children present. She figures other women “got jealous and complained.”

Information from: New York Post,

Maybe I would feel differently if I was a rabid fan of a team. Sure she was showing her team spirit but what else was she showing? It's New York. In December. And she was in fishnets and a bikini bottom? Really? At least she was wearing boots! I'd hate for her to catch cold!

(You mean she looked something like a Santa version of THIS?)

I'm a little disturbed that she didn't buy the "children present" reasoning for asking her to cover up or leave. Why do women always go for the "they are all jealous of me" reasoning? Are we really that egotistical? Or are we that shallow? Or are we that insecure that we have to dress like tramps to get attention and then when we embarass the fool out of ourselves we have to get defensive and blame it on someone else?

And what about those men that you see at EVERY game (college or pro) who feel the need to inflict their guts and other body parts (you've seen the droopy drawers - don't deny it!) on us in person or on live TV? Were they asked to put clothes on? Were any of them escorted from the game? Just because they can doesn't mean they should. And what happened to the rule "what's good for the goose is good for the gander"?
One final rambling from my little blue bowl I call a brain. What in the world is with the fan costumes anyway? I'm all for folks wearing a jersey or team gear but do they really need to go THAT far? What does it have to do with football? And what about the people around you? Do you think all of them want to be staring at your garish attire for 4 hours while you get loaded and do everything you possibly can to get on TV so that you can call your buddies at the bar who weren't "lucky" enough to get tickets and scream (unintelligibly) "DID YA SEE ME?!?! DID YA? WHOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!"

I think this is the first time I've heard of a woman going all out (maybe literally - there wasn't a picture with the article!). And I don't remember ever really seeing women on TV all decked out in the nonsense. I'm wondering if it's a guy thing and maybe she was just trying to find a fan soul mate.

Maybe I should just come to grips with the fact that I'll never really get it.

Friday, December 12, 2008

I'm Confused.

Yeah, I know that comes as a news flash to everyone. (Insert sarcasm here!) But I really am confused. Now I don't claim at all to be incredibly informed about the whole bailout issue. I am one of those slacker Americans who doesn't get incredibly involved in politics, and I remembered just enough economics to pass my 10th grade Civics class and balance my checkbook. So if anyone can enlighten me a little more - in a constructive way - I would love it.

The banks and mortgage companies made some really bad decisions and made loans that they never should have made. Then they played Russian Roullette with them selling them over and over and creating one ginormous mess when people suddenly couldn't pay. They were given a $700 BILLION bailout. Our good friends at AIG took their bailout money and went on a vacay to the spa under the name of leadership training. No one required that these companies show what they were going to do with the money. No one is making them account for the funds they are given. No one required that those CEO's and CFO's and COO's made huge changes to cut costs and put a infinitely better business plan on paper much less into action.

Now we have Detroit asking for much less help. They too have made some really stupid mistakes by not being pioneers on the energy revolution front. They have bowed to unions and have put a lot of money in their own pockets as well. The unions have run their own companies into the ground and don't really seem to be trying too terribly hard to help out right now. Our government turned Detroit down. Big old "rejected" on that application and a severe tongue lashing for showing up at their hearing in private jets. Detroit went home with their tail between their legs and took their time out to honestly think about what they had done wrong.

They came back with an apology and a detailed plan of what steps they were taking, what steps they would take and what they would do with their money should they get it. They even carpooled this time. They got the big red stamp again.

Before someone one jumps on me for supporting the government's involvement in business, let me tell you that this is not my point. I don't want government involved in business except to make sure that things are run ethically and responsibly via laws. What I DO want is for people to actually look at the ripple effect.

You let the automakers fail and the folks on the line lose their jobs. The folks who work in the electronics factories lose their jobs because they don't need to make car stereos anymore. The people in the upholstery sector lose their jobs because there are no seats to cover. The machinists in the nut and bolt factories lose jobs because what are they putting together? This isn't even looking at the sales force that now has no product. Do you supposed Capitol Hill looked at these factors?

They gave the banks money so that they could help people stay in their homes. Well, guess what guys? If those folks don't have jobs, you can throw all the money in the world at the banks and they are still going to lose their homes, and food, and clothing.

I'm confused. I don't understand why the rules are different for white collar versus blue collar. I don't understand how you can give so much money to one group and require little to no accountability, but you can't give money to the group who has just given you every detail they can possibly provide. Especially when the second group has such a direct and monumental impact on the voter you are supposed to represent!

The CEO of Ford is working for $1. Not he's not going to starve thacks to all his years at the top but he made a personal cut to show his sincerity. AIG dude let his crew go to a spa. I just don't get it.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Wordless Wednesday (Bowl Style!)

Eeeeek! I can buy it? I can REALLY buy it? Eeeeek!!
You saw this right? So he's selling the famous glove and the gates to Neverland. And other 80's children just a little saddened by this? My how the mighty have fallen.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

You Have GOT To Be Kidding Me!!

This is too insane even for me. Parents of teenagers pull them close and read this to them. I mean it! You are about to read some information that they need just as much as you.

"The kiss of deaf - Chinese man ruptures girlfriend's eardrum

BEIJING (Reuters) – A young woman in southern China has partially lost her hearing after her boyfriend ruptured her eardrum during an excessively passionate kiss, local media reported Monday.

The 20-something girl from Zhuhai, in southern Guangdong province, went to hospital completely deaf in her left ear, the China Daily said, citing a report in a local newspaper.
"The kiss reduced pressure in the mouth, pulled the eardrum out and caused the breakdown of the ear," the paper quoted a doctor surnamed Li from the hospital as saying.

The woman's hearing would likely return to normal after about two months, Li said.
"While kissing is normally very safe, doctors advise people to proceed with caution," the paper said.

(Reporting by Ian Ransom; Editing by Nick Macfie)"

No kidding! I just pulled this straight from Yahoo News.

Gives a whole new meaning to "sucking face" doesn't it? The next time you have that obnoxious couple in front of you in the theater or the amusement park line you may share this information with them.

But here's my deal. Did I really read that doctors in China just issued a caution to go with kissing?! Seriously? This could change the landscape of sex ed classes the world over. And to think we used to be just afraid of STD's. Now we get to panic everytime we try to make out with our significant others.

Happy making out! But be safe about it - This Public Service Announcement brought to you by your friends at The Zoo and The Bowl.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

9 year old Casanova!

This video is almost 6 minutes but if you have time you have to watch this kid! But even better watch Meredith. She is almost taken back by him because he is so incredibly charming. I think I might be a little smitten with him!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Almost Wordless Wednesday!

Bill! What are you thinking?

(President-elect Obama and Commerce Secretary nominee Bill Richardson)

PLEASE grow your beard back!!

Or at least try to lose one or two fo those chins.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Can Anyone Spell B-R-A-T?

I am having some trouble trying to decide if I should laugh or if I should be disturbed about how coddled this child must be!
An eight year old (I'm thinking third grade?) German boy stole his teachers keys, fired up her compact and crashed it into a Volvo. Why? Because his teacher sent him out of class and he was going home to tell Mommy! Now I have an imagination but even I can't make this stuff up!!

When I was eight I was still learning to ride my bike. If I was acting up so bad that I needed to be sent out of class, my parents were the last people I wanted to see!

*But this child steals his teacher's keys. Yeah, that morals lesson stuck!
*He tries to drive her car. Because his parents have taught him so much about safety and endangering others!
*And he's doing it all because he's going home to whine to Mommy about being treated unfairly? Good job on teaching your child consequences!

Over $10,000 in damages were done. In my house that child would never have an allowance again! And you know he wasn't covered by his parents' insurance.

But let's look at this again. How in the world did this child get out of the school without someone noticing? How long do you think it's going to take for someone to sue the school for negligence? And how much do you think they'll win?

The world has gone mad I tell you! Mad!!

Monday, December 1, 2008

A New Meaning to Black Friday

You didn't think I missed the whole "Stampede Someone to Death for a TV" story from WalMart?

Oh no! My poor father took my rage on that one! You saw it right? A 34 year old temp maintenance employee happened to be the poor chap who opened the doors on Friday. Think that might have been a short straw moment?

It wasn't enough that these crazed maniacs tore the door off the frame! No, they stomped a man to death, knocked down a woman who was eight months pregnant and when other workers tried to help they roughed them up too.

I was shocked and dismayed at this much of the story but then I hit "Read full article." The shoppers complained and refused to leave the store when management tried to close. Are you kidding me? You waited all night by choice. You stomped a man to death. And now you can't stop shopping long enough to let them at least clean up the mess you made? Seriously?

I understand that the economy is tough right now and that no one has a lot of money to spend. I get that sales are important this year. I also understand that some of you are psychotic enough to shop on Black Friday. I get it that Wally World had some good deals.

But you kill a man for a TV! And then you complain because you have to stop shopping! I can't even begin to tell you how enraged I was at the human race Friday evening when this story came up. But I am getting even angrier as I realize that the chances this man's family is going to have any kind of justice is next to nil. They can enhance and study that security tape all they want but the chances that they are going to be able to bring anyone up on charges is next to nothing.

So his children (if he has any) get to look at a tree this year that probably won't have many (if any!) presents under it thanks to funeral costs and their father being gone! They also get to look at an empty seat at the dinner table and a missing stocking over the fireplace. But let's be clear. They won't just do this THIS year. They get to do it every year from here on out.

I hope you enjoy your TV. Perhaps you could send the widow the money you saved. Oh but wait; that would require you to act like a human!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Let me recap my week for you.

My phone decided it was possessed and shut down 20 seconds into every call. My computer all but blew up. My dishwasher decided that it needed a reboot. The dog yacked on the carpet and the children are so keyed up about Grammy and Poppie coming to visit that I had to bungee them to the roof rack to get home from school yesterday. That being said, this is me!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Apples in a Barrel

I have tried my best to steer clear of all the drama that is going on out in Bloggy Land lately. It really looks like women being women. It started with the Twitter/Motrin debate of '08 and slopped over into popularity contests over a Wii. It turned into hate mail and blog bashing. Just pretty much one big mosh pit of ugliness. I am a non-confrontational person so I was actually repelled by all the nonsense but it did get me thinking.

You know the saying, "One bad apple can spoil the barrel?" We all can agree that that is true right? But how does it happen? First, someone isn't careful when they are loading the barrel. They let a questionable apple in. Then they forget about it, neglect it, leave it there. They never do anything to take it out.

Other apples get put in with it. They rub up against and snuggle that questionable apple. The tighter they are packed and the more they rub up against one another the faster that apple turns. Pressure maybe. And then the bad apple is done.

But since it was packed in with all these other apples it's already had the chance to spread the ugliness that is rot. And those apples don't get away. They stay there and they rub and they rot. If all of the apples aren't divided out and the bad ones gotten rid of, you have suddenly lost a whole barrel.

So I was looking at my barrel yesterday. It's not terribly full. I don't have a lot of people I consider close. And the ones I do consider close and the ones I do put in my barrel don't have ugly spots. Are they perfect? No. They have bumps and they may not glow all the time. But they aren't rotting.

I don't pack my barrel super full either. I keep just the apples I need. Just enough to keep me going on my rough days. Just enough that I can give them the good in me too without going dry.

There have been a lot of campaigns and rants and posts about bringing positive vibes back to blogging. Boost one another's esteem etc. I say, just go through your apples. If you have a rotter, get rid of it. Don't comment on posts. Don't push more apples down on the rotter. Just get rid of it. If you have some apples that may be questionable, get rid of them or take a minute and find out if they are rotters or not.

What's in your barrel? And are YOU a good apple or a rotter?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Have you Ever...?

Have you ever been in the middle of your bathroom cleaning routine only to turn around and find a naked child?

Have you ever sent a three line e-mail to a friend and when you were done found a child with diaper cream from eyebrows to mid scalp?

Have you ever reached for the milk only to find an empty jug?

Have you ever heard someone talking and suddenly realized in mid search that it's you - talking to yourself?

Have you ever decided that the smell really isn't worth finding anyway?

Just checking. I need to feel normal today.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Things I Baked this Weekend

I think we have established that baking is my therapy. Well, it's a good thing I wasn't charged for the time I put in therapy this weekend! Holy Smokes!

Doughnuts for Mo's sleepover breakfast!

Birthday cake for Mo's Sleepover Dinner.

Cookie Pizza #1 (decorated by Tuck & Munch) for school party.
Cookie Pizza #2 (decorated by Mom) for School Party!
I should be ok until the Thanksgiving bug hits next week. And then the cookie bake right after? I should make it to the New Year on a pretty even keel!

Monday, November 17, 2008

I Wonder about Priorities.

I tried very hard to stay out of the Twitter/Motrin firestorm this weekend. Ok, so maybe "tried very hard" is a bad choice of words. I tried to ignore the Twitter/Motrin firestorm.

In case you missed it, Motrin had an ad in the que that offended mom's who use slings and other baby carriers to keep their children close. **I refuse to use the phrase baby wearing or any version thereof because children are not clothes. You wear the sling and carry the child in it. You do not wear a baby.** They referenced to this parenting style as a fad and insinuated that mothers who do it are trying to prove something - that they are "official moms" because they practice this form of bonding.

What does this have to do with priorities? Everywhere I turned this weekend this was on the front burner causing all kinds of outrage and back and forth. Not all of it was handled with grace (very little actually in my opinion!) and even more comments looked just a touch hysterical. Women were outraged! They actually managed to crash Motrin's website expressing their displeasure. The ad, by the way, is being pulled from everywhere they can catch it so your "approach" worked.

Congratulations for being outspoken on a cause you felt worthy. But really? An ad for a pain reliever? That's what you are willing to get outraged about? As Trish over at MomDot said, where is the outrage over land mines? World hunger? Children in our own country who don't have health care or even food and clothing? Where are the advocates for the crack babies that are screaming in hospital nurseries?

I understand that you feel like society as a whole looks at you cross eyed when they see you with your child in the sling. Let 'em! You made your choice. Stick to it and go about your business. Who cares what they think? I think your socks are ugly! Does this mean you rush to your sock drawer and change socks? Am I going to get a UPS fleet pulling into my driveway dropping off boxes of "protest socks?" Get a grip! Do your parenting your way and let society stick it in their ear.

You are willing to rail at the wind and scream offense because someone posted a 60 second ad about your parenting practices. Are you willing to take the 2, 3 or however many hours you spent on this this weekend and donate them to delivering flowers to nursing homes? Or serve in a soup kitchen? Or take canned goods to a food pantry? You do realize of course that long after that ad campaign would have been completed there still will be hungry children and people in general who need just a little love and human compassion. Why in the world would anyone put so much energy into something so trivial when there are so many other worthy and in my opinion more important matters to address?

The next time something causes you outrage could you do me a favor? Really stop for a minute and ask if it's really THAT important. Is this something that will pass? Can you put your outraged energies into helping someone else?

I promise. You can carry your child in your sling while you do it.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

All this talk of partying and the holidays over at the Zoo got me thinking about food and holiday foods. Man! I love to cook! I mean love it right up there beneath my family. So here you go. A shot of me cooking my first turkey ever! Christmas 2003. Nice hat huh?**Sorry - it's a scan.

Can't get enough of Wordless Wednesday? Pop over to MomDot and grab a few more linky's!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Oh, Mainstream News Media! How I Love Thee!

Just when I think the blog inspiration well has gone dry, you do yet another new piece that just takes me to new levels and places of blogging joy! And for once I'm not going to pick on NBC. This time it's Ms. Sawyer and her network who is going to get my skewer! Ready?

Victoria Secret: Formaldehyde in Bras? So here's the story. A woman is suing VS for a rash that she developed in areas that contact her bra. Testing by her attorney's office has revealed the presence of formaldehyde in the bra; VS disputes that claim. That's the short version.

Now I took the time to actually look at some (not all 193 at last count) of the comments left for ABC on this news story and I am blown away! For two years or more in some of these cases women have been wearing these bras and having these problems. You never thought maybe there was a problem with the bra? You never thought maybe you should change your brand? You are just now putting two and two together because you saw it on the news?

I understand brand loyalty and as a woman I am incredibly aware that finding a bra that fits is a chore and a pain in so many areas other than your behind. But you are more willing to deal with rashes and blistering and SCARRING than you are to go find a new brand of bra? I don't know if you are crazy, lazy or just certifiably nuts!

Do I think VS should launch an investigation and find out what the problem is? Absolutely! Should some kind of restitution be made? Give them a refund on the faulty bras they can return to you and take the rest off the shelves. Pay them some kind of settlement? Not on your stinkin' life! Make people take responsibility for their own stupidity! You wore the bra even though it was giving you a rash! And someone else should pay you?

Well, if that's the case I'm going to go out and walk into a street sign. Then the steel industry needs to pay me for my head trauma! Or maybe the city for putting it somewhere where I could get to it.

And people wonder why children play the blame game when they get in trouble!

Stupid people tick em off! And shame on you Mainstream Media for giving them two minutes to be stupid for the whole world! But keep it up because someday I'll be able to say, "This blog brought to you by the find producers of ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC and FOX NEWS!"

Friday, November 7, 2008

Is the Media out to Just Tick me off This Week?

New Hampshire is looking as shaving 2 years off of high school so that we can send students to college at 16 instead of 18! No kidding! Check out Should Kids Be Able to Graduate After 10th Grade? and take time to read the full article.

I am having a hard time figuring out where to even start with this. I want education improved in our country. I am all for mandatory Pre-K and higher teacher salaries. I would even be in favor of the idea put forward by The West Wing - the GI bill version for teachers. Get a teaching degree and we'll pay for it if you will teach for at least x number of years - and maintain a high standard of performance.

I will NOT rush my children through school. I would be appalled to send a 16 year old off to college. These poor kids have barely wrapped up puberty and you are sending them to college? If you thought you had a problem with underage drinking before, toss a glut of 16 year olds into the mix. At least the states would be able to raise revenues from DUI fines and arrests.

I graduated right after my 18th birthday. I went to college in the fall and I declared a major right away. I hated my college and I hated my major so I transferred and changed majors. I busted hump in college and finished on time (in spite of transferring) with a BA in Christian Studies. Ask me how I'm using that now. Yeah, I'm not! Ask me what I would have majored in. Business. Or I might not have even gone to a traditional four year and I would have gone to culinary school instead and become a master chef somewhere or at least a pastry chef.

How can you expect a 16 year old to know what they want to major in? And if they are graduating at 20 what happens next? Are they really ready for the corporate battle ground?

I really think between the growth hormones yesterday and New Hampshire education today that there is a conspiracy to make children grow up too fast and another one to just tick me off!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Am I the Only Person Bothered by This?

I am a person of average height (5'7") and my husband is tall (6'3"). My children have always been in the 95% in height. Height has never been a problem for our family but I still have a problem with this.

Aren't we trying to eliminate growth hormones from our food? Hasn't it been shown that these can have effects beyond building them taller? I'm confused.

But my big problem with this is the motivation behind it. Your perfectly healthy child is being picked on for being short so you boost them with growth hormones. Why not just teach them how to cope with bullies? What ever happened to "Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me?"

Better yet. Why aren't the bullies' parents taking active steps to stop the action? Is it ok for people to be bullying about height? Or color? Or weight? Are we going to start allowing children to get gastric bypass? And what are we going to do for the children who are teased about being too tall?

I am a little concerned about the things we are doing with science and medicine. Instead of focusing on cures for disease we are researching how to eliminate teasing? Where is the line? Is there a line? Will we eventually get to the point of Stepford medicine? Will we eventually be able to fix every little imperfection or facet that we don't like about ourselves?

What happens to the personalities? What makes one person different from another? Where is the emotional strength? I know I am firing off questions like a machine gun but I can't make sense of it. Why would you spend 10's of thousands of dollars to "fix" a perfectly healthy child? What message are you sending? If someone bullies you, retreat into your shell and go buy a cure for yourself. Or is it, the bully was right. You ARE short and that is wrong.

I understand in the piece they noted that this child was not able to reach the water fountain and that is an issue. But isn't it the law that provisions are made? Like maybe a step stool? My husband gained inches late in high school. What is going to happen to the 8 year old who goes through this therapy who has a growth spurt in high school?

I am concerned about the implications this bears. But I'm not the only person with an opinion. What's yours?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

So Now What? What are you Going to Do?

I know that there will be political commentaries popping up all over the place this morning - I have already come across them. People who "lost" are stomping and still dragging down the policies that our new President-elect has said he will support. They are still railing that the country is headed for hell in a hand basket. And they are raging that we just put on our gasoline underpants.

Those who won are celebrating that it is a new beginning today. Life is going to dramatically change and things are going to get better. Then there are the people who are looking at our situation and are standing slack jawed at the history that has been made. Two women were in the political forefront. An African American man was finally voted President. A new day has downed on our great nation.

It really does not matter to me which column you are putting yourself in. I could not care less who you voted for. That part is done. I want to know what you are going to do next. Are you going to stand in the rain and rail at the storm that it ruined your picnic? Are you going to dance in the rain and say look the drought is over? Or are you going to come in out of the rain and say where can I help? Are you going to use sense or are you going to hope someone else does it for you?

The wrestling match is over. A winner has been declared. Are the fans just going to walk out of the stadium or are they going to stay and help clean up? A commentator said last night that now it is about expectations. We expect our new President to do wonderful things. To turn our economy around, to end war, to promote our image in the international arena.

I expect him to lead us in those directions (and I would have expected it of both candidates!) but I expect him to LEAD. Not to pull the wagon while we all sit on our behinds and cheer. As Americans went door to door and knocked and asked for votes I wondered how many would walk door to door and deliver canned goods to those who need groceries. As they made campaign donation after donation, I wondered who would give to the Salvation Army, Goodwill, soup kitchens. As they made phone call after phone call I wondered how many would go to the nursing homes and veteran's hospitals and St. Jude's and visit with those who need love and company so much.

Yes. There is a new and historic era coming in America. But what are you going to do about it?

Wordless Wednesday

Before anyone thinks I am celebrating one candidate or another - Today I am celebrating America and democracy. People voted in record numbers for ALL offices that were on the ballot. People stood by their beliefs. I'm just celebrating that I live somewhere where that can happen without violence.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I'm Sparky!!

Susan from What Happened to my House? has awarded me with a Sparky! How honored am I? The funny thing is that I don't think of myself as a sparky person but in the past week I have posted 3 times about things that would be considered sparky! Blogging is bringing it out in me!! So here's my Sparky!

If you haven't been by Heather's Maternal Spark yet on your own you really should head over. This is an incredible lady who takes time to promote the creative spark in all of us. You have to love the chance to be creative. And make sure you visit some of the Sparkers that she is interviewing. Wow!!

So now I get to pass my Sparky on...Hmmm...Who is worthy? I have to pass this on to...

Kadi and the bearded dragons at Womb at the Inn(sane)
Mrs. Schmitty at It's a Schmitty Life
Sissy and her Blogger issues at Mama's Other Side
Karly at Wiping up Snot
RMD at Insanity Corner

Religion, Politics, and Things I Generally Avoid.

Confession time. I am not very involved in politics. I understand that as an adult and a parent I should be. I find politics very boring and very divisive. I prefer to keep my mind busy with things that are positive and uplifting that make life more pleasant for others. You may judge me how you like but at least I am open about my stance. Since you have chosen to visit my blog, I expect you to respect my decision not to be involved if I so choose whether you agree with me or not. And now that that ugliness is out of the way let me get to my point.

I looked around the sanctuary this morning during church and I noticed that there were quite a few more filled seats than I have seen in recent weeks. As we were leaving I noticed that the line of cars headed into the parking lot was a bit longer than I've seen in the past few weeks too. So what does this have to do with politics?

I have heard the phrase "We need to pray for our country is this time of trouble" more these past few weeks than I did in the past two years. As a matter of fact the last time this country seemed so united and religiously focused was right after 9/11. People filled churches then too. When we went to war initially, pews were packed. A few weeks ago when the bailout package was showing its face at every water cooler on the planet, there was a small spike. And now the Sunday before the election, look at the parking lots of your local churches.

I know why but I'm going to ask anyway. Why? Why is it ok for people to turn now and not every other week of the year? Why is He ok to talk about now? Why is it so important today when it wasn't that big of a deal this time last year? Does our country need MORE prayer now? Why? Because all of a sudden we find our McDonald's budget reduced?

Before I get skewered again, I have no problem with people turning to God. I would love to see more and more people turning. I would rather not have a whole empty pew beside me on Sunday morning. I don't mind waiting in line to pick my children up from nursery. I just hope they are sincere.

It is the people who aren't sincere who are giving the church the black eye. When people refer to hypocrites they are talking about people who act one way on Sunday AND IN A TIME OF CRISIS and a completely different way the rest of the week.

So my prayer is that on Wednesday when the election hype is over and the votes are tallied. In seven years when the economy has stabilized and we have forgotten all about this recession. When our property values are restored and we are telling our children about "when you were young." My prayer is that the church will be even more important than it is today. May the pews always be this full.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Blow Smoke Somewhere Else, Weenies!

I got my "reply" from Target. Can we say "noncommital?" Well, I guess that just marks one more place off my list of places to visit this holiday season. These people sure are making shopping easy!

Dear Sarah,

I'm sorry your recent trip to our Roswell East SuperTarget store didn't meet your expectations.

We're always looking for ways to improve your shopping experience. Hearing about the size of aisles, is important to us. I've documented your thoughts and comments, which will be shared with our Store Operations team for further review. It's just one way we can keep working to provide you with the experience you've come to expect at Target.

If you ever have concerns during your visit, please visit Guest Service and ask to speak with the Guest Service Team Leader. They'll make every attempt to resolve the issue during your visit.

We appreciate your feedback because it helps make Target even better.

Target Guest Relations

Wow, Jason! I can't wait to get back. So you're REALLY going to share it with Store Operations? Incredible! And those Guest Services people? They'll really rearrange the store for me WHILE I'm there? Holy Smokes!

Sorry, I just can't bring myself to believe that anything is really going to change. So I'll just give up on the multiples shopping carts, do all my shopping on Sunday's when Beloved has the day off and give up any family time I might have been able to squeeze out. Or better yet, I just won't give you my money. I'll give it to a small business owner who REALLY needs it this time.

Next week, my take on customer service or customer dis-service rather!

Wordless Wednesday!

Wanna know what happens to pumpkin guts?

The seeds get roasted - Yummy!!

And the meats get stewed.

Watch for Pumpkin Gobs with Cream Cheese Filling and Pumpkin Pies!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I Sent Hate Mail to Target!

And I don't even really hate them!

This was a mess! Don't offer me a multiple child cart if you aren't going to make your aisles wide enough for me to use it. This is exactly why I don't shop at WalMart - because they don't even give me the option. But those fine folks at Target in an effort to capitalize on my demographic (psychotic mother of three under 6) gave me the option.

They just didn't bother to try to operate said carts while they did layout. The main aisles were wide and open - thank you. But then I tried to go between the clothing racks.

First off, the clothes didn't seem to be in any kind of order. Let's put a rack of infant boys here next to a rack of toddler girls. Then a rack of toddler boys next to a clearance rack of women's workout clothes! What in the world! Let's put the girls clothes beside the women's clothes and the girls tights with the men's socks! Holy crap!! Was this put together by a random layout generator?

Then let's see if this lady who didn't have a choice but to bring her three children with her can negotiate this little shop of horrors. We'll stagger the racks so that there aren't any straight lines and she has to constantly turn ninety degree angles. But we'll make it super challenging (because after all this is a Super Target) by making sure that all of the racks are spaced just far enough apart to fit the cart through but not wide enough to turn at all. She will be forced to move in straight lines as if on train tracks while trying to keep her children from pulling everything off the racks which are in their faces because the aisles are so narrow.

For the amusement of our security team who is watching on the monitors in the back, let's make sure that there are at least seven team members who can see her at all times. We won't expect them to talk to her or ask her if she needs help because if she did she could go talk to those four ladies standing at the customer service desk talking about tonight's TV lineup.

Oh and we just HAVE to throw the sample lady into the mix with her double frosted red dye slathered sugar cookies. She'll be a big hit with the three children who are already bouncing up and down in their seats while Mom tries to rummage through 18 mo, 5T, 3T, 24mo (no lie! That was the order!) sweatpants looking for the last 4T.

Do you know that I ended up leaving my cart (with the three children in it) in the main aisle of the store and walking a full 10 yards away to get $6 worth of tights? There is no way I am going back there during Christmas to shop like that if they haven't fixed the problem.

I would expect these kinds of things in the middle of the holiday rush in a store that has been open for years. The associates really don't care at that point. I know that - I worked retail for 5 years right out of college. I get the holiday burn out.

But this store has been open 17 days. That's right people! Just over 2 weeks! You would think that the displays would at least make a little sense. And to those gifted individuals that did the store layout? Get a cart and go shopping in your own store! I mean it! Take 3 of your statues - I mean associates - and put them in a handicap wheelchair cart, behind a regular cart, and behind a multiple child cart and make them walk through the store with you. Or better yet, do it yourself.

In the meantime, you better pray that I don't take those spammers up on their offer to become a secret shopper. I've got your number.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Shhhh...Don't tell!

I think I might be caught up on my To Do list again!

No, I will not be dancing today. Although..that's not a bad idea. It's chilly and windy here so dancing and getting the blood flowing wouldn't be a bad idea. But for today I think I'll stick to the tea.

Anyway, as I was saying before my brain took a side trip, I think I might be caught up! Insomnia is good for something anyway. I got most of my housework done last night while I was trying to wear myself out and shut my brain down so now it is 5 PM and I get to sit down with a cup of tea and a book or my embroidery.

It's amazing what happens when one decides to focus. For the past two weeks I've had the focus of a goldfish. And though the beginning of this post does not reflect it, I think I've finally gotten my head together. But I was wondering...

How to you refocus? I can't be the only person on the planet that gets sidetracked and can't get anything done from time to time. I mean, there are days when I feel like I'm running up a mudslide! For me it's a matter of just making up my mind and setting short goals.

So what do you do to focus? How often do you have to dial in?

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Selfish Vent!

So if you don't want to hear me whine, move on to the next post on your reader.

When I cruise by blogs I try to find something (current or older) to comment on. It may just be a "how funny" or a long thought out comment. But I try to let people know I've been by! It's just a courtesy!

If you have managed to avoid the blogging addiction, you are unaware of the time, energy and effort put into writing things. We bloggers are a sensitive bunch. We know that people are critiquing us and judging our personalities based on what we write. We try to be humorous, informative, inspirational, or whatever our genre lends us to. And to do that day in and day out is tough.

So the next time you pop by a blog, leave some sign that you were there. Your blogger will appreciate it!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Wordless Wednesday!

This is even funnier when I tell you that she was "Booooooo!-ing" Daddy when he took it.

Motherhood means...

But the stipulation is you can only give me one word. No explanation. No stories. Just one word.

This is actually research for a video blog series I am going to post on my blog so all I want is your word. If I use your word, well, you aren't going to get any wonderful prize or huge recognition, but you can say "Hey! That's my word!"

So you tell me. "Motherhood means...."

Go ahead and link back to me if you would like so I can get as many words as possible.

And if you want to see where you will be featured you can pop over to the Zoo (free admission). Posts will start going up this weekend (25th) and will continue through November 30th.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A Lesson in Language

We all know that men and women speak different languages. I was not aware of just how different those languages are though until last evening.

My brother in law just returned from a fifteen month tour in Iraq two weeks ago. So I took a chance to catch up a little last night. He was telling me about a kit he got while he was there that would be ideal for my van. Here's where we started to speak different languages.

He said "Gerber kit."

Take a moment and think about that. If you are a woman, you have the same picture I do - a sweet faces, chubby cheeked, curly headed baby. If you are a man you have a completely different picture. You are seeing a multipurpose tool that hangs on your belt.

I was momentarily confused. "Why did he have Gerber kits?" But my brain started seeking out logic and it suddenly made sense to me. Perhaps they were out on patrols and came across families with small children in need. Perhaps the fine folks at Gerber made a donation to the humanitarian effort and put together packs for the soldiers to distribute. Makes sense!

But then he started telling me what was in the kit. Flashlight. (Logic seeker still active) Ok so I can change a diaper in the back of my car at night. Shovel. Ok so I can bury the dirty diaper if I don't have anything to wrap it up in and it's just THAT foul. But then he said the flashlight had a really heavy handle in case I was ever attacked. My brain shorted for a second and I started to think "man speak."

Duh!! It's a tool kit, dummy!! It's not a kit with diapers and wipes and food. I started to laugh out loud so hard my poor brother in law thought I had completely lost my mind. I'm pretty sure he was groping for his cell phone so that he could keep me on the phone while he called the men in the pretty white jackets.

Although I have to admit, that shovel idea could have some practical applications.

Friday, October 10, 2008

What if "Pay it Forward" really happened?

Would you participate?

Would you go out of your way to do something incredible for another person?

Would you be ok with getting nothing in return?

Would you be okay with not knowing if it even worked in the first place?

I've been watching the news for the first time in 5 years. Everyday I hear more about the economy. More about people losing their homes. More about the demise of the environment. More crime. More cruelty to animals and children. More misery everywhere.

Then suddenly it will pop up. Someone paid for the dry cleaning, coffee, McDonald's for the person behind them. And it will go on for hours at a time. But then it stops. Someone thinks only of themselves and breaks the chain.

What if we all did something that only involved our time? What if money was taken out of the equation? What if we just baked something for a home bound neighbor and went for a visit? What if we just held the door for the mom with the stroller? What if we went to visit at the hospital? What if we just gave blood?

What if we only asked that it be paid forward?

Is it even possible? Is there enough kindness left in humanity to make even the slightest difference?

I believe that there is. I believe that in these troubled times there are plenty of people to love and be kind to. I believe that there are people who can put themselves aside and think of others.

I wonder if you will.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

"Where do you see yourself in five years?"

What a bogus question! If you had asked me six years ago where I would be in five years, I certainly would not have given you a pitcure of the adventure I am currently on. So here it is; today's...
Thirteen Things that can Happen in Five Years
You can gain 28 pounds.
You can have three children.
You can move two times.
You can own five cars.
You can paint three rooms four times.
You can celebrate 18 birthdays.
You can carve 15 pumpkins.
You can host two "big" parties.
You can enjoy three real Christmas trees.
You can take 3, 000+ pictures.
You can cook ten turkeys.
You can bake a million cookies.
You can fall in love four times.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A Rainy Wordless Wednesday

I woke up to the sounds and smells of rain this morning for the first time in 2 months. How wonderful. But it make me think about the contrast between the quiet gray of a rainy day and the vibrant colors of a sunny day. Since I have the rain outside I'll just have to get my color inside!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My Battle Against Stress!

Meredith Viera had a 2 minute interview this morning on the Today show that has been in my brain all day.

So we as women are taking this economic situation, plus our family stuff, plus our jobs, plus our children's behavior, plus our attempts to please others and we are doing ourselves in! I have read so many blogs, personal messages, and notes in the last 48 hours from friends and complete strangers that demonstrate this to me.

You may (or maybe not) know that I am blogging over at the BlubHer Overhaul. I have seen so many ladies struggling with stress eating or lack of motivation for working out or just being sick. And now I'm wondering how much of it is linked.

I have friends who have said to me on numerous occasions, "I just can't beat these blahs!" And I wonder if they really mean "I just can't beat this stress."

So of course having had all day and 2 loads of laundry (and the motivation of my own stresses) to ponder this, I started to ask myself "So what do we do to battle it?" Exercise? Eat right? Meditate? Pray? All very valid solutions I told myself. But I want more.

What can I do to help other women battle back against stress? Is it just a matter of leaving a comment on every blog I visit? Is it sending a random e-mail to tell someone I care? Is it praying for other people that I see hurting? But I still want more!

You may or may not have seen Copacabana last week -here's hoping you missed it! But that is what I want to do! I want to start a "Pay it Forward" style campaign. I want women to reach out to other women and make them smile. Even if it's only for a little minute, enough of those minutes from enough other people will make a difference.

I have seen so many references to medications, depression, and stress that I wonder if the tide can be turned. I am an optimist. I believe that it can be. But people have to look outside of their own meditation, exercise, dieting, and prayer and try to help other people. I come back to the gas situation I faced last week. I have no idea what effect if any my half a tank left behind had, but I have to believe it helped someone.

Help me. It's not an official campaign. I don't have a happy blog button for anyone to carry around. It's just what is right. So if you see someone today who needs a smile, tell them a quick joke or just smile at them. You may just save their life.

Monday, October 6, 2008

I Want to Meet the Woman...

Who has the guts to do this. Over at MomDot Trisha put up a post for Fox News. Check it out here. Apparently they are trying to do a special on Super Moms.

Now I know over at the Zoo I did a post about how we are all Super Mom but we all know that that was completely facetious. But just the same.

I know that there are women who try to be a real live Super Mom. They make sure their children are dressed to the nines for everything from playdough to family portraits. Their homes are spotless all the time (just in case someone should stop by) and there is always a treat of some kind freshly baked or baking. They may even be able to do all that and still balance a full time job. Their hubbys are thrilled to trot them out at company functions because they are always guaranteed to be witty, charming, polished and all around delightful. These are the moms whose minivans are always stocked with spare clothes, snack, juice and never have even a crumb on the floor much less a fingerprint on the windows.

But go ahead and ask them about it. Ask them if they think they are Super Mom. Even if they really do they are not about to admit it! We are women before we are mothers. And as women, we have a confidence problem. If we admit that we are Super Mom then someone is going to start watching our every move just waiting for us to mess up. The thought of failing as a self proclaimed Super Mom makes us swear off of PTA meetings for the rest of our child's career at the current school. If we admit we are Super Mom we will be branded as the egotistical too good for the rest of the playgroup mom who suddenly stops getting the invites or is sent incorrect times.

I want to meet the woman who admits that she is Super Mom and does it with such confidence that we all agree. I want to meet the woman who claims the title and then manages to live up to it. She really would be among the people I claim as superheroes in my life.

Now if you won't be too offended, my cape and I have to go wax the van.

Friday, October 3, 2008

The Downside of a finished To Do list.

You have nothing else to do with your day. So here are a few snapshots of my day.

I watched C-SPAN. I hate politics!

When C-SPAN finally broke me I went to bake brownies. In the middle of mixing the brownies, I heard, "I have a booger. Can you pick it?"

After picking the booger and washing my hands (twice) I finished the brownies.

As I slid the brownies into the oven, I heard screaming from the back yard. "I stepped in dog poo!!" And I knew he had no shoes on. So what did he do? Tried to pick it off thus getting dog poo on his hand. Then he tried to come into the house to wash it all off! Not on your life S.M. Rhino!!

After washing the poo off I chilled while C-SPAN tallied the votes.

Then the baby got up and had lunch. Which was followed by going to pick up the Orangutan. And now we are home. No boogers. No dog poo. But plenty of brownies.

Which might explain this....

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

Last evening hubby and I were closing up the house for bed. As he slid the deck door shut, he heard something so he called me over. "Honey? Was that an OWL?!" No. That was two owls having quite a conversation in the trees a few houses down the street. We sat on the deck and listen to them chat for a while and then went to bed. But it got me thinking...

I grew up in the country. And by country, I mean middle of no where. My sister and I eventually stopped trying to give people directions to our actual house. We would give them directions to the town close by and then go get them and lead them in. That's how far out we were. And now I live less than a mile from four grocery stores. But I miss it...
Thirteen Things I miss about living in the country.
Sleeping on the deck chaise all summer long
The Milky Way band that you could see arcing over our house on a summer night
Peeper frogs right before the rain
Waking up on a Sunday morning to a flock of turkeys on the deck
Riding bike until disk and never worrying someone was going to get me
My folks knowing the instant I crossed the county line on my way home for college breaks
Never having to rake leaves
Planting a garden
Carnival food and tractor shows
The smell of fresh cut hay
An old country store good for everything from milk to building supplies; guns to coating chocolate
Family reunions where the neighbors stopped by and were welcome
Clotheslines and the smell of sun dried sheets

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

There just aren't any words.

But you people still wonder why I am the way I am?

Monday, September 29, 2008

A Letter to Karma

Dear Karma,

I sincerely apologize for my gaseous outburst just a mere hour or two ago. Thank you for rewarding my consideration for others. It was very generous of you to send information to Beloved just as I published my rant.

Please be lenient with The Tie. Do not treat him like the stressed out mother of three with raging PMS (or other appropriate cuss words) that we know you can be. A little pop on the hand or butt probably would not do him a disservice but I leave that entirely to your discretion.

Again, I thank you sincerely for overlooking my rage and for allowing the lines to be short and the pumps to be fast. I'm sure it did not escape your attention that in spite of my state of mind over The Tie I did not fill up or take more than my fair share. I did double up over last trip though because enduring this stress week after week will significantly shorten my life span. I would not want to deprive you of any opportunity you may get in the coming days, weeks and years to teach me more lessons.

Thank you again for your tolerance.

A Gassed up Friend

I Tried to Avoid it.

I tried very hard not to vent about the gas situation here in Metro Atlanta. I really did. I mean it's been ugly for over a month now and I am just getting to losing my mind so I think I did really well. But now I have had it.

For those of you who have been under a rock, the metro area is out of gas. No not low. Not suffering from incredibly high prices. No we're out. As is none. As in little baggies on all the pumps for a 50 mile radius (possible larger but I was afraid if I did anymore research I would be left). "Why?" you ask?

Because Ike knocked out some refineries. I understand that. But we weren't in this situation during all the chaos of Katrina. We weren't in this situation even when 9/11 happened and everyone panicked. So why are we in this situation now? No really! I'm asking why?

And as if being out isn't enough. When stations DO get shipments, folks pull stunts like I witnessed this morning. There was a line over a mile long which I had waited in for over 30 minutes with The Boy and Munch in the van. I watched a man fill up his SUV AND 5 2 gallon jugs. Now tell me. Why is a man driving and SUV and wearing a tie filling extra cans? Is he a landscaper? Is his wife's car low? I don't know and I really tried very hard not to judge him.

Until the pumps ran out just as I swiped my card to get a measly $15 bucks. Did the Tie really need to FILL UP? Did he really need those extra 10 gallons which would have done me for 2 weeks?

There's my real problem with this whole situation. If you are a commuter I understand, but are you carpooling at all? Have you looked at MARTA (our measley mass transit) if you work down town? Can you make do with less so that everyone can have some? I don't go anywhere so when I can find it I'm not filling up. I'm putting in enough to get me around for a week or two and then I'm going again.

Is this my own fault? Should I stop watching out for everyone and start being selfish like the rest of the world? Maybe. In the meantime I get to pray over my tank everytime I go out to pick Mo up from school (and yes, I should probably put her on the bus but she's only 5!) and subject my two little ones to morning gas raids until we can get anything.

And by the way if you live in a neighboring state that has plenty, could you talk to your lawmakers about sending us some relief? We would appreciate it!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Playroom from the Nether Regions.

My office (ok, so it's my desk) sits right next to the playroom. I hate it - the playroom I mean. I am kind of fond of my desk. The chair is really comfy. And it spins. What was I saying?

Oh yeah! The playroom. I hate it. It will not stay tidy. I know it will never be "clean." It IS a playroom after all. But does it have to look like Kansas in the summer all the time? I would just like to be able to see the Emerald City carpet for more than minutes at a time.

Ok, so I am not the most disciplined about making sure the kids put away the toys when they are done. And I should probably stop letting them bring snacks down if I would like to stop stepping in questionable stuff. The funky smell would probably diminish if I would make sure the sippy cups got back upstairs at the end of the day.

But I guess the part that bothers me most is when we clean up. I end up doing the lion's share of the work. The whining that goes with the cleaning is enough to make me want to throw everything out and tell them to stare at the walls. And I forget that five and three year olds have yet to figure out logic. So when I say, "I didn't play with them - I shouldn't be cleaning them up" it pretty much qualifies as wasted breath.

Beloved reminded me that once upon a time (when we first moved in three short years ago) this was OUR den. Our place to hang out after the kids went to bed. Soft lighting, over stuffed couch, a little entertainment center with TV and DVD. A haven if you will.

Now the flourescents are on all day every day glaring at me from above like I am a burger on a warmer. The couch has been chewed up, juiced up, and recovered twice. The entertainment center has become combination entertainment center, toy chest and art board. No more haven. Just a playroom.

But it keeps them happy and I can referee the wrestling matches from my comfy spinning chair. I guess I can make the sacrifice to the Playroom gods.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

How Cool am I?

So my pal over at Frogs in my Formula awarded me! This is my second award and wow do I ever feel special!! Thank you darlin'!


So it's time for me to share the love!! Hmmmm...who do I think is brilliant? Well there's

Sissy and the Martians over at My Kids Might be Martians
Kadi at Womb at the Innsane
Toni (my fellow dork) at Daily Dose of Toni
Jiggety J over at Jiggety Jig
B over at The X Mom
Mrs Schmitty and all the girls over at The BlubHer Overhaul
Tena and her Punky Monkeys
And of course, my hero! Trish over at MomDot!

Ladies you rule!! Together you have turned this little hobby of mine into a hospitalizing obsession! Thank you. Thank you so much!

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen Things to Love about Fall
Sleeping with the windows open.
Blankets just feel better when there's a chill in the air.
Soup that's been cooking all day.
Beef vegetable, chili, loaded baked potato, chicken stew
Apple, pumpkin, and cherry pies, cookies of every kind, bread in all varieties.
Pumpkin Patch
Pumpkins, straw, red wagons, toddlers, parents with cameras
Deep reds, bright oranges, warm yellows, fading greens, toasty browns
Raking, bagging, planting, pruning, mulching, standing back at the end of the day
Personal holidays
Celebrating five birthdays and an anniversary with people I love
Dressing up, little spooks, candy, neighbors
Pee wee, high school, college, pros, rivalries, friendly pools
Fall clothes
Early sweaters, boots, jeans, turtlenecks, long skirts, favorite sweatshirts
Warm mugs
Coffee, tea, cider, hot chocolate
Evenings on the deck
Tiki torches, sweatshirts, friends, Louis, Frank, Dean and Nat
Grocery produce section brimming with red, green, gold, and marbled

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Now Here's One I KNOW I Can Win!!

Ok, people. So I pretty much got monkey stomped in the Class Clown contest over at MomDot. And I was crushed (are you feeling guilty for not voting? Good!!). But now I have a second shot. Kadi at A Womb at the Inn(sane) is hosting "Embrace Your Inner Dork!" And I am in the running.

Oh yeah!! This one I can win!! Pop over there and vote for either #10, 12 or for the video #15. Yup! That's all me!! Aren't you proud? Now here's the catch. You have to be fast!! Voting ends tomorrow at midnight so you have to go vote NOW!!

Tell you what. If I win I might even post a special dork video just for all of my fans. What do you say? Copacabana? Cuban Pete? Jump Jive and Wail? Hmmmm.....So much dorkiness to release on the world....

Wordless Wednesday!

Is there a better way to say Welcome to Fall?

Sure! Add carbs!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Roll Coaster of Randomness

Don't ask me. My brain was full and I had to dump. Good luck on the ride and keep your arms and legs inside the car at all times.

Unsolicited Product Testing
I was invited to test out Noodleboro (new games by Playskool). I agreed because a mom can only put so many floor puzzles together so many times before she starts looking for the sharpest fork in the drawer. I was contemplating which eye I could live with out the easiest today when the FedEx man rang the door bell. Why do they do that? Now the dog was going off; Mo was inviting him to "Cooooome iiiin!" and Tuck was screaming, "Is it for me? Is it for me?"

We got the Sharing game and I have to tell you it's pretty darn cool. If you really want my full review you can find it here. But I will say this much. If you need to teach some basic social skills (listening, sharing, manners) to preschoolers you'll be interested. It's a really cool set up. So score one for Product Testing.

I pushed my luck a little and went to neighbor's and borrowed his Dyson. I've seen the commercials; I've drooled (hey, I didn't say my life wasn't small!). Now I'm not so sure. Maybe it was the model he had (DC2007) but I am not impressed. Mr. Dyson either doesn't have toddlers or he failed to have a mother of a toddler test his product before market.

Sure it sucked the dust and dog hair out of the mat under the carpet but I ran over a string four times and still ended up picking it up myself. The Bissell Boys would have sucked it up from a good foot away! Granted it would have just wrapped around the beater bar and jammed up the works for other stuff later but out of sight....

Mark that off my Christmas list.

Jello. Not something I enjoy but today I tried again. Have you seen the new Blackberry Fusion? Pretty good stuff for Jello. And I learned that we have a Mickey. You know "try it you'll like it" Mikey? That would be our Munch. No one wanted to try the Jello until she tore into it like it was chocolate dipped chocolate. Same thing goes for cantaloupe, watermelon, tomatoes, and pretty much anything she can beat the dog to.

Did I get anything done today? What do you think? With all this nonsense going on in my head I am not even sure if I made a to do list today! I did whack the tops off all the holly from Medusa's hair salon. Those things were out of control!! And I might be allergic. The spots where it pricked me (nasty stuff that it is!) keep turning red then fading then turning red again. Who put holly on the list of cool Christmas stuff anyway? Wrong answer people!

Are you dizzy yet? Did I send you for enough loops? I hope you enjoyed your ride on the Roller Coaster of Randomness. We here at Toilet Bowl Amusements thank you for coming. Please come again!

Monday, September 22, 2008

It's Called a What?

Oh, that's right! It's called a dish - WASHER! Silly me!

Now I am not one to lose my mind and rip off a good vent unless someone has pushed me. Well, guess what? That's a hand print in the middle of my back!

After church yesterday I made a dash out to the grocery store with the girls so that I would be able to combine trips. (By the way, don't come to GA if you are looking for gas. We don't have it! Another day for that one.) I called home to see if Beloved wanted something special for lunch while I was out and got the following lecture.

B: No. I'm fine. And that was the end of the call. But no sooner did I put my phone back in my purse than it was ringing again.

B: Can you do something for me?

Me: Oh, you decided what you want?

B: No. I don't want anything. But will you please wash the dishes before you put them in the dishwasher? I'm cleaning up the kitchen (wait for me to pick myself up off the floor) and there are dishes in here with little bits of food all over them.

Me: Are you kidding me? This rhetorical question asked so incredulously was answered with a three minute lecture about how it's hard on the dishwasher to have to clean food off of dishes and how our dishwasher (which is run a minimum of twice a day) is going to start drawing bugs.

The lecture would have lasted longer but I oh so politely excused myself from the conversation (ok, so I hung up on him!) and went about my shopping. Now this has had time to simmer in me and it's getting a little like a bad pot of chili. I keep getting hotter and hotter.

It is called a dish-washer. I put dish detergent in it. The argument is that it only serves to sanitize the dishes. Then why is NO ONE using actual soap and scrubbing on the dishes before they go in? Why am I not buying a sanitizing rinse to put in there instead?

I rinse the dishes before they go in so they are food free. Sure there are specks of ketchup left behind sometimes but it's a dish WASHER! And maybe I would be able to shake it off, but my darling Beloved has found a way to effectively restrain his cleaning urges. Yes, I have said the phrase "lift your feet" to him when vacuuming. So now he suddenly can tell me that I am going about things the wrong way?

Has he avoided eating off of dishes I have loaded in the dishWASHER my way? Nope!

Has he come down with some flesh eating virus he ingested from my dishes? Not yet!

Has the exterminator moved into the playroom? Absolutely not!

So what is the major malfunction? After lunch today I intentionally put a peanut butter covered bowl in the "dish sanitizer" just to get his goat when he gets home from work tonight. Tomorrow it's going to be a plate slathered in mustard and egg stuff. That'll teach him!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Anybody Want to Make a Bet?

That shining day in every woman's year is fast approaching. As I cringed and braced for the impact this morning, I remembered to call my hubby and ask him to mark it on his calendar. I specifically scheduled it for his day off so that I would not be taking the children with me. The doc saw enough of them when he delivered them; he does not need to see them any more. On top of that four, three and one and a half is way to early to be that familiar with where you came from.

There are still three weeks between me and That Day but I knew if I failed to make Beloved's calendar now I would be up a creek with a very odd looking paddle. I will remind him again next week and the week after. I will remind him the Friday before and again the day before.

How much to you want to bet that he schedules a client for eight that morning knowing full well that my appointment is at nine? Will he do it on purpose? Who knows. But I am almost guaranteed that he WILL do it.

I have no earthly idea why he does these things to me. He did it with Mo's dentist appointment. He has been known to do it with almost every well visit for the last year and a half. Is he mad at me? Am I not "loving" him enough? Is he REALLY that determined that he wants another baby? I would be happy to do penance for all of that if he would just once spare me the stress of last minute baby sitters or a touring three ring circus when the sitter falls through.

Just in case I win this bet I had better go start lining up a sitter. Ugly Tuesday will be here before I know it.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wordless Wednesday (even though I already posted)

Oh, yeah. I really have Mother of the Year sewn up.
And then I got this 2 seconds later. What a faker!

My Run for Mother of the Year

The campaign is off to a rough start.

Mo had a dental appointment this morning. Now let's start with a review of today's treatment. Three fillings, one root canal and a crown. Oh yeah. I really rock on the brushing of the teeth. I will be the first to admit that I failed her in the dental hygiene department and I have no excuse. But what is done is done so now I have it fixed and I go forward taking better care of every one's teeth. Lesson learned.

Today was the first round. There is more to be done on the other side but the doctor was a dear and split it up. She was excited to go because her best friend has a crown and she wants to be just like her. This is going to be fun! Maybe I should have tried to temper her enthusiasm a little but I wanted to avoid inducing anxiety. It was bad enough that Daddy was in a panic about her treatment. It was all I could do to keep him from freaking out. I was not about to add her to the mix. So I went with it. Bye MOTY points.

The longer she was back in the office, the more anxious I got. But finally they told me I could come settle the bill. I had just wrapped it up and had picked up the receipt when here she came through the door. Her eyes were a little bleary from the sedation and she had that funny little gauze roll thing hanging out the side of her mouth. She looked up at me with pitiful little eyes and said, "Mom, my cheek feels buzzy." I plastered on my fake smile and looked at the dental assistant who assured me she did a fabulous job and only got "a little wiggly right at the end."

We loaded in the van and she said in her most pitiful voice, "Please can we just go home?" Being the merciful mother I am I responded with, "Can't we go to the park first? Tuck was really good while you were in the doctor so he would like to go to the park." Who does that? Who puts their child through incredible pain and dental manipulation and then asks them to sacrifice themselves for the sake of their siblings? But she is a giving child and she agreed. I pushed the guilt aside with the thought that "maybe a little distraction is what she needs." Sayonara MOTY!

We made it all of ten minutes at the park. By then we were 45 minutes removed from the actual anesthesia and she was really starting to feel the effects. Tuck took one look at her and said, "Maybe we should take Mo home." The three year old. I was campaigning for a MOTY? So we loaded back up and came home.

You are going to tell me I'm lying but I promise on her silver tooth it is true. She got out of the van walked into the house and locked me out. I unloaded the other two and crossed the garage to have the knob stiff in my hand. Thank goodness I still had the keys and the front door. It made for a good joke and it made her smile so I took my punishment like a big girl. Then it was off to the medicine cabinet for some Motrin.

She is all snuggled up with her blankets and pillows and Boomerang so I think we may have made peace for a while. I hate to admit it but I have laughed a little at her expense. She has been looking and acting as pitiful as she possibly can in hopes of guilting me into all manner of treats and special treatment. There are some more MOTY points laughing as they pack their bags.

At least I have next year.