Tuesday, May 29, 2007

What is the opposite of Memorial?

I haven't seen it on the news or the internet anywhere, but from the events at my house yesterday, I would swear that it was not only Memorial Day, but also National Opposite Day. Because regardless of what I said, the children in this house (at least the ones possessing Y chromosomes) were doing the antithesis of whatever I directed.

Exhibit A: The result of my answering, "No, you may NOT play with the water hose. Go put it back and do not turn on the water!!": One boy in the tree house holding the hose while it sprays down on his buck nekkid older brother. Then, when commanded in a booming voice heard throughout Texas asked nicely to come over to the sidewalk, little brother in the tree house instead plunges himself, chest first in to the ginormous mud puddle made by the contraband water hose. What. the. fuck???

Exhibit B: "Pick up this living room" evidently means pullout every blanket, couch cushion, piece of paper, and toy (that hasn't already been confiscated due to not picking up) and distribute evenly across the room and into the entryway.

Exhibit C: "No, you cannot have a snack right now, we will be having supper in ten minutes" translates to "By all means, get yourself a popsicle and one for your brother. While your at it? Grab a cookie or two when you think I'm not looking."

Exhibit D: "Stay in your beds, be quiet and go to sleep and NO PLAYING" actually means, climb out of bed as soon as Mommy shuts the door and into your brother's bed and scream while alternately playing and beating the hell out of each other. And, just to be ironic, come interrupt Mommy reading to SugarPlum to tell her that "I bonked my head on Bear's bed."

I could go on & on, all the way to exhibit Z and beyond. But, I'm sure you get the idea. I think that they are trying to make my head explode. Because, come on, how cool would that be? And as an added bonus, I wouldn't be able to nag them to clean these brains up off the walls and floor, "right now, mister!"

They are awfully cute. And they give great hugs and kisses. Lucky for them. Because that's about all that's keeping me from selling them to the gypsies at this point.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Don't forget...

As you enjoy your cookouts and water skiing and Super Memorial Day Blow-out! sale shopping, please take a moment to pause and reflect on those brave men and women who have given their lives over the years to make it possible for you to have this holiday that we all take for granted. Before you pop open that beer or pur yourself another margarita, maybe make a toast to those who can't have a cold one along with you today.

Whether you are for or against any war, remember that if it were not for the courage of soldiers over the past decades and centuries, you wouldn't have the privilege to express your thoughts and beliefs.
I believe that we would all do well to keep in mind this saying by Father Denis Edward O'Brien, USMC:
"It is the soldier, not the reporter, Who has given us freedom of the press.
It is the soldier, not the poet, Who has given us freedom of speech.
It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, Who has given us the freedom to demonstrate.
It is the soldier, Who salutes the flag, Who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, Who allows the protester to burn the flag."

Thank you to the families who have lost loved ones in the struggle to keep our nation free. And God bless you all who continue that fight today. You all have my utmost, undying respect and love.

Find out more about the history behind Memorial Day.

Happy Memorial Day to all!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Things you might find vaguely interesting

  • SugarBug turned four on Monday.
  • And I totally did NOT blog about it.
  • Because I suck.
  • We invited a few friends (all girls, heh!) to the obnoxious pizza place w/ the rat.
  • Not so bad on a Monday at 11:00.
  • I may try to post pix on Flickr soon.
  • But first, help me think of a special "thank you" for the mom who bought my son a harmonica.
  • Yesterday was Bear's kindergarten graduation AND SugarPlum's fourth grade awards.
  • Kindergarten graduation - 9:30
  • Fourth grade awards - 9:45
  • Of course.
  • I actually managed to make it to both without missing anything important!
  • Because, you know, I rock.
  • (forget that sucking part up there....everyone gets busy, right?)
  • Today is the last day of school.
  • SugarPlum has a 103 degree fever.
  • SugarPlum is pissed.
  • She was supposed to go to a slumber party tonight at her best friend's house.
  • So, her friend moved the party to Sunday.
  • THAT'S a good friend!
  • Did I mention that it's the last day of school?
  • help me!
  • OOOOOH!!! I never told you that weSugarPlum got a 100% on ourher coelacanth project!
  • All hail Bitchy Smurf!
  • Only 38 more days of being a single mom.
  • YAY!
  • Or (depending on when you ask me) still 38 more days of being a single mom.
  • Ugh!
  • I'm having mood swings.
  • heh
  • A few weeks after he gets home, we are spending 10 days in Virginia Beach.
  • On the actual, no kidding beach.
  • Okay, in a HOUSE on the actual, no kidding beach.
  • We will get to see lots of the Queen and the rest of the Royal family.
  • And hopefully LBT and anyone else who wants to pop in and say hi!
  • This weekend, though, I am hermetically sealing the house so as to not contaminate the rest of the town with out germs and we are going to clean and/or watch movies.
  • Guess which will actually happen.
  • Happy Memorial Day!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Look! Another review! I've been busy...

You know my feelings about rude people and what should and should not be done in certain situations. *ahem*

So, when I started reading Late Night Talking by Leslie Schnur, I knew that I would totally identify . Jeannie Sterling is the host of a late night radio talk show called "Sterling Behavior" where she "vents with her listeners about everyday injustices, from rude cell phone users and poor gym etiquette, to bad drivers and many other annoyances of modern urban life."
Sound familiar? Perhaps like a certain mommy blogger who vents about the people at the gym or terrible customer service or the idiots picking their kids up from school? Because, of course, she is perfect.

But, to make this some truly great chick-lit, you must have some hunky guys with whom our heroine can fall in (or out) of love. And this book has some great ones! Her handsome best friend whom she knows inside out -- as well as he knows her -- suddenly becomes more than just a friend. You know that this can lead to no good, girls, yet it still makes a great read! And then there is her cocky, very wealthy, devastatingly handsome boss. Whom she can't stand - on principle more than anything else. Who will win her heart for good? Okay, we all know that answer, but it's fun to see how it happens. You will end up happy by the end of the book, I promise!

Adding to the great plot is Jeannie's relationship with her best friend and producer Luce. I could identify with so many of the complicated aspects of their friendship. Honestly this was my favorite part of the book. Their relationship is real and shows how your best friend can sometimes be the only person who knows your faults and still loves you. AND? She is the only person who can tell you when you are making an ass of yourself. (Not that I would know anything about that. No comments from CRB, Mrs Jackalord, or the Queen, please)

Back to the rantings....these can be best conveyed by Leslie Schnur's own personal list of pet peeves she shares on her website:

The rude behaviors that really piss me off, in no particular order.

People who talk in the movies. You're not in front of your TV. You're in public, remember?

People who eat in live performances. Those people are actually alive up there on the stage. You're not at the movies where you forget that you're not in front of your TV.

People who don't pick up their dog's poop. Definitely grounds for a $50 fine.

Spitting in public. This is what separates Man from the llama.

Littering. If everybody threw his trash on the ground, where would we be? In your living room!

Not holding a door for someone, and not saying "thank you" when someone holds the door open for you. It's good to be the king…if only you were!

Talking loudly on your cell phone in public. Cell phone rudeness has
been discussed ad nauseum…but apparently, it's just not enougheum.

Drivers who don't signal and don't wave a "thanks" when you let them
in. I'd call you a pig, but I hate to disparage the little pink critters.

Stealing a parking space, taking up two spaces, and/or parking illegally in a handicapped space. Don't even think about getting through the pearly gates.

Leaving pee on a public toilet seat. Need I say anything more?

Leaving your sweat on the machines at the gym, leaving your stuff all over the dressing room bench. It tells me more about you than I want to know.

Adults who ride their bikes on a sidewalk. They invented something special for machines with wheels. It's called a street.

Being mean to a waiter, bank teller, or other service person Be kind to people trying to help you, because it's not always their fault.

And vice versa: haughty or indifferent service. Be nice and helpful,
because it's your job.

Line cutters. Those whose sense of entitlement is bigger than their…well, you know.

Strollers blocking doorways, aisles, sidewalks. Talk about entitlement. Have baby, will be rude.

Parents who let their toddlers run around in a restaurant. They're only cute if their ours.

People who crack their gum. Unless appearing uneducated and low class is important to you.

Clipping nails in public. That's why they call it "personal" grooming. Oh, and because
it's disgusting.

People who ridicule others by making pet peeves lists. As if they've never yelled at a taxi driver for taking the long way when had he not been talking loudly on his phone the whole time he might've paid more attention and then she wouldn't be sitting here behind the garbage truck while the meter is running, as if money grows on trees!

Are there ANY of these you don't agree with? Do you see now why I LOVE this book? I do believe, knowing you as well as I do, dear internets, that you, too will love and adore this book. (could there be MORE commas in that sentence?) So why are you still here? Go! Buy! Read!!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Blog Tour!! Mamasource.com

If I have ever, in my whole married life found a website that was made just for me it is this one. I have been an Air Force wife for over 13 years now. I have moved ::counting on both hands:: well, lotso times. And each time, I have felt fortunate to be a part of a squadron and a base full of other Air Force wives who are always happy to recommend various places and services in and around the town and area where we are settling. As much as one can settle in two to four years.

However, as I get more "settled" and get to know my neighbors, fellow church members, etc, I find from are natives the "real" scoop on what there is to know about my town. You know, "Oh! you don't want to go there for your haircut! That woman has had four shops in town and they gave all been shut down by the health department!" OR "You know, instead of getting your cakes at XYZ grocery store, you need to check out this little downtown bakery. The guy there has been the chef for the governor and even does pastries for the President sometimes!"

As I got more internet "savvy" (how dorky does that sound?), I joined message boards and read sites about pregnancy, babies, child rearing, etc. They were all VERY helpful. Really. But at the same time, I found myself thinking, "Well, that is just dandy that there are so many resources available to you moms in Atlanta/Dallas/Chicago/any other urban area." HOWEVER most military towns are not in thriving metropolises (metropoli?). Most of the places I have lived are slightly backwater towns with no children's museums, zoos, amusement parks or even what most would consider a real mall, for heaven sakes (unless you consider JC Penney the place to buy the "fancy clothes"). As such, the lion's share of the advice I saw was, if not useless, fairly impractical.

Then a few weeks ago, I was introduced to Mamasource.com. This, my fellow mommies, is a place where you can post questions and advice that is directed to other moms in your hometown!!!! What a concept! Now when I am wondering what in the heck I am supposed to do with the SugarBabies this summer, I can get suggestions of things to do that we can actually do!! Not "get a membership at the zoo so that you can go as often as you like" since the closest we have to a zoo is the pet store or perhaps the little prairie dog town that has popped up at the local park. NO! I get suggestions like "Hey, did you know that the local theater has a camp for kids every summer?" Or, "If you're planning on sending them to soccer camp, do the one at the University and not the one that the Candyland Soccer Association does. The CSA one is overcrowded and not well supervised." I can also get ratings from real moms like me about plumbers, hairdressers, childcare centers, restaurants...the possibilities are endless!! If I had just had this a few weeks ago, I might have been able to get the scoop on who the best orthopedic surgeon in town happens to be rather than being at the mercy of the Air Force.

To any mom who is feeling isolated, alone, clueless, and frustrated this site is a blessing. But to a military wife who finds herself in a new place before she can ever get acclimated to the old one, this Mamasource is a godsend. I wish that I had had this while I was preparing for each move. I can only imagine how helpful it would have been in finding a realtor, choosing schools, shopping...well, just about everything.

When you register, you enter your zip code and you start getting information and questions from moms who are not just in your flip flops, but who most likely bought them at the exact same Target store that you did! As PCS season gets into full swing for military families I know this will be an invaluable resource to many tired moms!!

From the Mamasource About page:

Mamasource is a safe and easy way to connect with other moms in your
local area. Find the advice, referrals and insight you need, in a supportive
community of moms helping moms. As a Mamasource member, you can:

Ask other local moms any question you need help with.

Read the questions other moms have asked- and see what answers they have received.

Share your own advice and practical referrals with other moms who need your help.

Mamasource is a free service, but to protect our members we are an invitation-only community. We have a strict no-spam policy and your personal information will never be shared with advertisers.

That is so great because I feel like I spend so much of my time online deleting the spam from the weight loss/healthy eating/cook this/buy this people. At least this won't add to it.

Sorry if I have sounded a bit crazy about this. I'm just so excited about Mamasource that I want to share it. I want to thank Miriam and the great moms at MotherTalk.com for sharing this opportunity with me. I think it will make the next few years in TEXAS!! (please, God, let it be years) much easier and more fun. Because, let's not forget...it's ALL about me.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

A Buttercup by any other name...

I recently found out that my oldest and dearest friend, CRB, is expecting a baby! She was the second friend to get married last year - Memorial Day Weekend - and she and her husband are tickled beyond belief. Nobody saw this coming, least of all the Mommy and Daddy. CRB is the mother of my two precious godchildren, who are now 11 and 15. Talk about your unexpected blessings! Though, I did have to point out to CRB that she and I are quite possibly the two most fertile women on the planet and that we really shouldn't be THAT surprised that this happened.

Daddy-to-be (D2B from here on out) is thinking that he doesn't want to find out the sex of the baby, he wants it to be a surprise. Which I find totally selfish. Because I NEED TO KNOW what this baby is and has she forgotten that it is all about ME?! (With the obvious exception if that one special friend of ours who shall remain nameless because he/she reads here regularly & will be PISSED if he/she knew that we spoke of him/her that way. Hee hee.) I need to know whether to buy pink or blue because while it seems like a good idea to just get green/yellow/purple stuff for the baby, once the little bundle of joy arrives that unisex stuff always looks far too masculine or feminine for your precious angel.

AND I do believe that you have HAD your surprise D2B!! How about when CRB said "I;m pregnant! SURPRISE! Yeesh!

Also? We need to name this baby. Before its birth. Although with CRB that can backfire. When she was pregnant with her son, the firstborn, she had decided to name him Joshua. For months we all "talked" to Joshua and sang to him and talked about Joshua and anticipated his arrival. About two weeks before he was born, CRB decided that they would name him after her father instead. It took me YEARS to get used to calling that kid by his actual name. To this day, I sometimes slip and call him Joshua.

So the rule I have made (because remember whom it is all about!) is that once this kid has a name, it cannot be changed. And if you do change it, I will always use the originally agreed upon name.

As a result, I have decided that until this baby has an actual name. I will be calling it Buttercup. Of course, CRB's daughter, A, thinks that Buttercup is far too girly and wants something more gender neutral. She decided upon Peanut. CRB, forever the diplomat, thought that perhaps we could all be happy by combining the two names. Which, leaves us with? Peanut Buttercup!!! So you know now that the name, boy or girl, has been decided. We are calling this kid Reese.

In the event that that name doesn't work out, here, in alphabetical order are my suggestions for alternatives. You make the call.

Boy Names

Girl Names:

Cora (heh)
Yvonne (heh)
Zsa Zsa

So, there you go. Choose wisely, my friends. I shall be having onesies monogrammed shortly after the ultrasound!

**Please don't be offended if I mentioned a name that is yours or that of a loved one. Some of these names, you would have to know their last name or their personalities to understand why they are funny!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Also? Butterflies!!!

There were dozens of these butterflies (along with a couple of monarchs) in our driveway last week. This one sat still long enough for me to take a few shots. Thank heaven, because it took me about 20 shots to get this picture. It kept opening and closing its wings. It stayed in one place for quite sometime - until Bug decided that he wanted to hold it. Bye bye butterfly!
I suspect that they were drawn to the berries that I have yet to identify. They look like little white blackberries, but they fell from the tree that hangs over our driveway form the house behind us. At any rate, if they bring out the pretty butterflies, then I'm happy!

Friday, May 11, 2007

Springtime in Candyland

*whew* I'm glad I got that off my chest!

Anywho....Holli has inspired me to share the pretties that the previous owners left behind at our house. They have been a very nice surprise and a much needed bit of happiness and beauty around here this week.

I LOVE having flowers in my garden. The irony of that is that if you asked anyone who knows me very well at all, they would laugh - nay, guffaw - at the notion of me actually "gardening." I'm not a dig/plant/water/get your hands in the dirt kind of girl. I'm more of a "hey! look what popped up in the flowerbed! I hope they come back next year!" kind of girl. And as such, this is what I will share with you.

The clematis growing on my front porch. I love clematis and I'm hoping that next year it will climb all the way up the post. Any suggestions as to how to nurture it? I have no clue in these matters.
Irises! In my back garden! Who knew?! At our first assignment after we were married, there was a place called Swan Lake and Iris Gardens and it was one of the most beautiful places in the world to me (if you can get past the stench of swan poop). This takes me waaaaaay back to that "honeymoon period." *sigh*
LOOK how gorgeous this flower is! The purple! The yellow! How could you not be happy looking out your back window at this every day?!
You know the only thing that would make it better? Having my handsome husband here with me to enjoy it! I miss you honey! Only 53 more days!!! xoxoxo

Thursday, May 10, 2007

You know who you are

If you're going to call my house, at least have the balls to not hang up. I have caller id, you know. Oh, and a brain.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

TA DA!! (alternate title: Thank goodness THAT'S done!)

At last, pictures of the kick-ass coelacanth. And, of course of the lovely and talented SugarPlum - also known as Gimpy, the One-Armed Wonder Girl.

No grade as of yet. She still has to make her presentation. Her report reads as follows (this child is a gifted writer): The Coelacanth By Gimpy, the One-Armed Wonder Girl

The Coelacanth is an AMAZING animal. This fish that scientists thought became extinct with the dinosaurs was found alive off the coasts of Indonesia and Southern Africa in 1932. You won’t find one while swimming though; these cave dwellers live more than 300 feet underwater! To prevent from being crushed at this depth, Coelacanths have armor-like scales that also help protect them from predators. Another interesting feature of this 6-foot long fish is its fins, which look like little legs. In fact, it uses these fins to “walk” along the ocean floor while stalking its prey! The Coelacanth has another thing to help it hunt too…glowing eyes! Because it is a nocturnal hunter, this odd characteristic definitely comes in handy. A last weird thing about this fish is its spine. It isn’t made of bone; it is a liquid filled tube! This probably makes the Coelacanth quicker and more agile. With all these amazing characteristics, it’s no wonder that the Coelacanth has survived for so long!

See, this place can be fun and educational! Who knew.
I asked her how everyone else's projects looked. She told me about how one boy made this really cool sea urchin and that her BFF made a diorama of a coral reef. And that one boy made this "awesome Emperor Penguin!"

My response? "You mean to tell me that we could have made a freaking penguin?! I (okay, WE)We sat up all night pushing in toothpicks and nails and gluing of "scales" and spray painting the entire garage and all of that other crap when we could have decorated a bowling pin and been done with it? LORD HAVE MERCY ON ME." ***

Also? The price I paid to create said coelacanth (subtitled the evolution of Bitchy Smurf). Most of it has finally washed off. Would that the bitchiness was as easily annihilated!
Still. I think we did a great job. Even if my driveway is almost entirely blue.
***honestly? We had the best time doing this project together. I love to watch her mind work and see her problem solve. We giggled and talked and joked together. This is one of the good parts of being a mom. But if you tell anybody I said that, I will totally deny it. I have a reputation to protect, you know!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Something fishy...

Sorry for the dearth of posts (because I been so consistent for the past...year?!). I have been very busy building a coelacanth for my fourth grade science project.

What? What's that you say? You thought that at the age of {mumble, mumble}, surely I would have completed the fourth grade? Well, so did I. But, being mother to Gimpy: the One-Armed Wonder Girl, it has fallen to me to do the actual construction portion of the dinosaur fish. She has been providing the instruction (read:barking orders) as to how the fish should be assembled. She'll make a great sweatshop foreman someday.

There were many, many options as to what to do for this science project. It is about the ocean and they could do a model of pretty much any sea creature (real ones anyway) or done a model of different areas of the ocean. So many things that would have been much easier and less taxing to my (and her) creative abilities. But, no, my over-achieving Wonder Girl chose a Coelacanth. The fish that has armoured, spiked scales, fins that have what are almost legs, and the strangest most specific color I have ever known. It took a week of looking through fabric and craft stores to find materials that would be acceptable, feasible, and affordable.

As it is, my fingers are spray painted blue (I am thinking of changing my name to 'Bitchy Smurf"), there are little foam circles and bits of florist's foam all over the house, and I have stepped on too many broken blue toothpicks to excuse as accidental at this point. I am beginning to hate this fish. And Mrs. ScienceTeacher (who is actually a good friend of mine). And all fourth graders, just on principle.

I'll post a picture of my her creation when it is complete. If my fingers still work after pushing 2,000 toothpicks/spikes thru felt and into the styrofoam/body. And if I'm not totally stoned from the spray-paint. I never said this project didn't have its perks.

I damn well better get an 'A.'