Tuesday, September 14, 2010

the forgotten post

***OK, this was actually a post from a week ago that I just realized that I forgot to actually post. It was to be titled "water, water everywhere" or something to that effect, I wasn't quite set on that. And normally I would just forget about it, but this story is pretty funny, so I felt that it needed to be shared.

I went to the grocery store last night. Now normally, that would not be an event worth mentioning on the ole blog (except for the time I hurled in Giant Eagle and left my purse in the store). However, this trip ended with me LITERALLY soaked from head to toe by the time I got home.

I arrived to the store about the usual time. And the weather was actually quite lovely. There was a chill in the air and it had me in a great mood (feeling that fall was near). One of my favorite songs was on so I sat in the car singing my heart out...er...listening quietly, until the end. I jumped out and opened the back door to get out the water jugs (we have a water cooler so we just fill the 5 gallon water jugs every week instead of buying bottled water). The little thing in the center of the lid of one of the jugs had fallen inside. So I removed the lid and started shaking it to get the little piece out. But alas, it had suctioned itself to the jug. I finally shook it loose, but OF COURSE the slippery little bugger slipped through my fingers and rolled into a crack in the floor of the van (we have stow and go and there are two itty bitty open crevices by each seat). so at this point I give up. I decide I'll just take the one in. I grab it and my canvas bags (right now, I'm realizing how "green" this post is...). So anyway, I close the door and LITERALLY 5 seconds later it starts the most ridiculous down-pour I've ever seen in my life. I stood there like a complete moron thinking
"should I go back and wait in the car"
"should I go back and get my umbrella".
"NO that's stupid, If I go back to get the umbrella, I might as well just wait in the car"
"make a decision you stupid idiot, you're soaking wet and your pants are falling down because they are now twice their normal weight due to water retention".
"Should I run?"
"NO, then your pants will fall down even faster and in front of everyone"
"should I just walk normally"
"oh sure, by the time you get there you will be even MORE wet"
"GOD you are stupid!"

So I ended up doing this really awkward fastwalkingbutnotquiterunning thing (and keep in mind that this whole time, I'm carrying an empty 5 gallon water jug, 4 canvas bags, my purse and my keys....and my pants). Except that by the time I made the decision to do THAT, it started HAILING. HUGE.FREAKING.HAIL. pelting my body like little bullets. I get in there and I am beyond soaked. My shirt is clinging to my chubby body like spandex. My pants are having to be held up by one hand at all times lest they fall around my chubby little ankles. My hair is plastered to my face and head. And my arms and face are covered in what look like little bee stings from the hail.

I really wish this was the end of the story...but alas, it is not.

I filled the one jug of water and got my groceries. By the time I left, it was down to a sprinkle, which was practically heaven in comparison to my trip INTO the store. I unload the groceries into the back and then hoist the 41.8 lbs (yes, i googled it) of water into the van on the floor behind the driver seat.

And then it happened.


It is then that I start talking to myself.

"oh. oh my goodness. oh no. oh Gaaaawwwd. It's water. Oh no. It's everywhere. What should I do? Oh, please stop. please, please stop. you're not stopping. I said stop...please."

I then tip the jug upside down (yes, as in, stand it on the 2 inch wide opening with the little plastic lid). When I do this, it stops leaking. By now, I am crouching in the back of the van trying to decide what to do. I start thinking about what horrible decision making abilities I showed 2 hrs earlier, so I call Josh.

Me: uhhh. hi
J: hiii
Me: soooo. I broke one of the water jugs.
Me: it was filled with water.
Me: and it was in the van.
J: (losing his patience by now) OOOOOOKAY
Me: and it was the only one I filled.
J: Jesus Christ!
(now who would have thought that THAT would be what set him off?...)
Me: I'm sorry, it was an accident. I think I'm just too strong for my own good.
J: Yah, I bet that's it.

Me: So what should I do?
J: leave it in the parking lot
Me: but then what will we drink?
J: Really?
Me: well, ya know, I could probably just drive home with it like it is now.
J: How is it now?
Me: upside down. Or right side up, depending on which way you want to look at it. ya know...like the glass half empty or half full thing. hehehe.
J: yah. (not at all thinking my shit is funny) just leave it in the parking lot.

So OF COURSE I drove home holding it upside down...

Every time I stopped or sped up water would slosh out all over the place. By the time I got home the 5 gallons of water was down to about 2 1/2 and the van (and myself) was soaked. Josh came out to help me bring things in. He took the water in first and when I got inside with some bags I hear this..

"oh. Oh my God. Oh no. Towels. I need towels. It's water. It's water and it's..oh God...it's EVERYWHERE"

So of course I say...

"But is there a drop to drink?" hehehehe

He did not appreciate my humor. See neither of us really thought through the way the water cooler works. The water goes down into the cooler when the air pushes it down. Now when there is a giant crack creating an ever abundant flow of air...and in turn, WATER, there is an issue. The water was spilling up over the top of the water cooler. EVERYWHERE.

"So just pull the water jug off the water cooler" you're saying. Oh sure. Easy enough. Except we did that and the little part in the center of the lid (like the one on the other jug from the beginning of the story) had been pushed into the jug. So to recap...when it's on the cooler the water comes out over the top. when it was out and upside down, the water was coming out of the lid and when we flipped it over it came out of the crack. So there we are in the kitchen, soaked to the bone trying to plug a hole and a crack with all of our hands ("that's what she said"). We ended up with it on its side over the sink, but by now, it had more like 1 gallon of water left.

Now if you didn't laugh at that, I blame myself...I really should have stopped and taken video ;-).

Friday, September 10, 2010

a sneak peek..

of our family pictures with a great girl I went to high school with. She is really awesome and did a great job. It's officially impossible to get a pic of all 5 of us looking super duper amazing (which clearly we all do in person ;-). But the first 2 family pics are actually REALLY good. I can't wait to see the rest of them, but wanted to share this with anyone that didn't see my link on facebook. Enjoy!


Monday, September 6, 2010

awesome day

**this post has no pictures because I forgot to bring the camera. However, we took mental pictures all day long a la...http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-MfVmfm9V8

So Saturday we went to the fair. Usually, it's just an excuse to eat food that's really bad for us and make fun of people (does anyone know why the freaks come out in masses to fairs?). We like to play "did ya see" on the way home. "did ya see the 400lb lady in the tube top and spandex shorts?" "yes. did ya see the family with 3 kids and none of them had shoes on?". Anyway, it's hard because the kids aren't ever tall enough to ride any rides (except the ponies, which they ride about 5 times each). But this time they were finally over 3 ft tall, which meant RIDES! Plus, the weather was absolutely perfect (about 67 and sunny). We ended up having a REALLY great day.

As soon as we got there, we put the girls on the ferris wheel. Sophia laughed hysterically the whole time. To say she loved it, would be an understatement. Meanwhile, next to her was Maria SOBBING "get me down from here!!!" (keep in mind, this was the kiddie one and she was no more than 10 ft off the ground). Jack kept saying "WEEEEEE!" every time they went by. As soon as they got off of that Sophia was ready for some more so we went over to the little swing ride (just goes in a circle). And Maria didn't want any part of that one either. While on that, Sophia catches a glimpse of a kiddie roller coaster and it was like a moth to a flame. She kept chanting "roller coaster" like she was in a trance. It was hilarious. So while on that Maria was down on land with us about to have a panic attack that something would happen to Sophia while she was on the roller coaster. She practically ran up and got her off of it herself when it was over. It was clear that Maria wasn't going to ride any more rides, so we let Sophia ride a few more by herself and then we headed over to the "big slides" (one of the few things she will ride). The bad part about those is that Josh has to ride down with each of them because they have to be 42" to go down alone (Maria has 2 more inches to go and Sophia has about 5 more. fingers crossed for next year). So anyway, it's 8 freakin tickets ($8) just for each of them to go down once :-P Anyway, then it was the main event...riding the ponies! After that, we ended up actually finding a bench (rare) and being able to sit down to eat. Then we left Josh there with his friends and dad to watch his 2nd tractor pull of the weekend while I took the kids home (one of those things he likes to do with his friends every year while I'm at home watching Christmas movies or scrapbooking :-).
Oh and on the way home I noticed that the sunset was absolutely beautiful. Just a perfect end to an awesome day!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Jack in the box

I had totally intended to do an 18 month post about our little Jack-in-the-box in July, when it was actually happening. But somehow I forgot. (Bad Mommy!) Anyway, here are a few things that I want to remember about Jackson as he is right now

  • When he knows he's doing something wrong he starts nodding "yes" before I can even start shaking my head "no". He looks so darn cute doing it that I almost don't want to say "no" at all.
  • When Josh pulls in the driveway he runs through the house screaming (at the top of his little lungs) "DAAAAAAAAD!"
  • His favorite new words are "CHEESE!" and "what?". The way he says "what?" to the girls is so stinkin cute there are no words for it. He sounds like me or something (not that I am even remotely cute, it's just cute b/c he is "parenting" his 2 older sisters).
  • His favorite old words are "uh oh" and "daaaaaad" (Josh and I are BOTH daaaaad, in case you were wondering).
  • He is attached to me ALL.THE.TIME. I hate to call him a mama's boy for fear that he will read this in 15 yrs and be mortified, but alas, it's the truth.
  • Favorite foods include goldfish, fruit snacks, blueberry waffles, mac & cheese and any variety of Gerber ravioli.
  • Favorite toys include anything he's been told "no" about a hundred times such as, the trash, the recycling, the shoes, any food in the bottom shelf of the pantry, folded clothes, the button on the fans (even after it's been unplugged), anything in any of the kitchen cabinets and anything the girls are currently playing with.
  • Newest tricks: opening doors, putting his (and the girls, if they let him) clothes in the correct hampers (one for darks and one for lights), taking off his diaper in bed and smearing poo all over his bed (obviously, this one is my *favorite*) and turning off/on the TV with the stolen remote that he is holding behind the couch so I can't see him (though, I can hear him b/c he's giggling about it the whole time).
  • He's a big freaking flirt. I don't know how he knows the difference between a pretty girl and a not so pretty girl. But he does and he only flirts with the pretty ones (however, he does not discriminate based on age. I've seen him go for quite a few classy older gals too). Going to the grocery store with this kid is about like I'd imagine taking him to a hooters will be in 15 yrs. They just flock to him and he loves every minute of it. He poses and bats his eye lashes and tries to kiss them and smiles. It's hilarious and horrifying all at the same time.
  • He has recently earned the nickname "the high stepper" because of the way he marches all around the house kicking his legs out as high as he can in front of him. No idea where this came from but it's here and it's funny as hell. (Unless, of course, he got it from one of his nazi friends, in which case we'll be putting a stop to it right away).

***As I sit here and type this he is pressing his face up against the screen in the window screaming "daaaaad" because he hears the neighbor mowing his lawn. pre-shus! lol

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Dear Beach

We miss you.
That is all.

And a couple funnies...

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Myrtle Beach Restaurant Reviews

These restaurant reviews are in chronological order from our trip last week (August 14, 2010-August 21, 2010). I have also thrown in a review of Ripley's Aquarium which we also visited. Now keep in mind, that Josh and I don't eat seafood, which is really big down there, so I have no first hand knowledge about that. I'm putting the links at the end of this post because I'm lazy and I don't feel like making a linky for every single one lol.

Angelo's Steak and Pasta
Ok, this place is rated pretty high on trip advisor and we went to the early bird dinner ($11 from 4-6, I believe), so we figured it would be a good bet for our first night. And for all intents and purposes it was pretty good. I (and the kids, though they were free) had the buffet. However, due to the kids attitudes (after being trapped in the car for 13 hrs) I didn't really get to enjoy very much of the food except some of the Italian sausage and pasta which was really good. The buffet is not very big at all (10 items-ish, not including sauces) and it isn't a serve yourself type of deal. There is someone up there and you ask them for what you want, which I found very odd. I mean it's nice, because there aren't a bunch of ppl up there sneezing on your food, but it was like I was asking permission to eat something I already bought. IDK, it was probably just me, but I thought it was strange. Josh had a steak and even though they tout having the "best steak in the universe", he says it was nothing special. Just a steak with not much flavor (though it was very tender and cooked properly). Another thing to mention is that the kids, while their dinners were free, their milks were $2.50 each (I guess they have to make their money somewhere). So for 1 early bird buffet, 1 steak, 1 beer, 3 kids milks and tip (they included it which I CANNOT STAND because we always tip 20% so they end up shorting themselves, and it said that they do it for groups of 10 or more and we only had 9, all with separate bills, so I guess we just looked cheap or something lol) it was $43. One of the cheapest meals we had and I would give it probably 3-4 stars

Crabby Mikes
In my opinion, this was the second best meal we ate. I easily could have gone here 3 or 4 times that week and had something different each time. First of all, after 5 o'clock they have a DJ outside to entertain the crowd that is waiting which is really nice and makes it seem to go faster. The place has a very cool ambiance and the kids were staring at all the fish and stuff hanging up on the ceiling. They start you off with hush puppies and honey butter (I could have made a meal out of these, and Jack practically did). The buffet has anything you could think of including prime rib. Now, I know what you're thinking, buffet prime rib...umm no thanks. But it was very tender and juicy (they give you the au jus) and it was equally as good as a prime rib dinner I ordered from a steak place later in the week. Also there are plenty of other meat and side options and there is any kind of sea food you could want (mostly fried, but lots of it wasn't) and the kids almost ate them out of fruit (4 PLATES EACH!). I tried crab for the first time (not a fan of the texture, but at least I can say I tried it, now and it did taste very fresh). I got a margarita at every dinner except for Angelo's and this one was the best. You could really taste the alcohol in it (a lot of places try to skimp thinking you wont notice b/c it's a mixed drink). Also our waiter was very nice and kept the plates and drinks coming and the restrooms were very clean (oh and when we were walking in a man was coming out of the mens room with toilet paper stuck to his shoe. I was sure that only happened in movies! lol). Each adult buffet was $25, the girls were $5 each and Jack was free. So for dinner for everyone, 1 beer, 1 margarita and not including tip, it was $72. And I could easily give them 5 stars.

Latitude 22/River City Cafe (the one at surfside beach)
Ok, there was a bit of confusion about this place in the beginning because up until this summer (or maybe even part of this summer) this was Latitude 22 (Caribbean food etc). However when we got there we were told that it is now River City Cafe (which is why we passed it...twice). We reluctantly decided to stay even though it was obviously just burgers and fries. It is beach front and you can eat outside overlooking the beach, if you want, which is nice. The tables/chairs/walls/floors are covered with customer graffiti and peanut shells. It has a definite beach-side lunch feel and the waitress said that's their really busy time. I had the BBQ bacon cheeseburger and it was huge and really good (though, the general consensus was that the burgers were overdone, we like a little pink and some juice to run down your chin lol). Each meal comes with tons of hand cut fries (think fair fries). We got all three of the kids their own meals (1 chicken, 1 hot dog and 1 grilled cheese), Josh and I got burgers, 1 beer and 1 margarita (prob 2nd best all week) and the bill was only $38 before tip. The food came fast, everyone left full and happy and it was obviously cheap. There was a bit of disappointment in the beginning, but if you know what kind of place it is before you go there, it is worthy of 4 stars, FOR WHAT IT IS. Not fancy or pretentious just burgers and sandwiches and fries in a casual, beachfront atmosphere. Oh and also, our waitress was really great too.

After we left River City, we took the kids to
Ripleys Aquarium
We had to wait in line just to get tickets to get into the place. I sort of thought it would be less busy at night when most people are at dinner, but IDK, maybe it's better during the day? Anyway, while waiting in line, the girls had to pee (of course). They actually let us in to pee, which was really nice. I'm sure if we were dishonest, we could have just stayed and they never would have known. So I was glad they saw that it was an emergency and not a con lol. The restrooms were nice (however you have to go down 3 ramps just to get there :-P). Once in there we realized that you CAN bring strollers in (a lot of aquariums wont let you) so Josh went BACK out to the car to get Jacks stroller (what a good daddy). Right after we got there, we sort of ended up in this dive show (rainbow rock?) and that was pretty cool. They only have a few of them a day, so I guess we just got lucky and happened to be there right when it started. Then we went and looked around. We all really enjoyed it because we like animals and stuff like that. The girls LOVED walking through the shark tunnel (it's really long too so you don't feel gypped). The one thing that we weren't able to even see was the new exhibit they have called "lethal weapons" or something like that. It was PACKED and originally we thought it was a line, but no. It's just 500 ppl crammed into a tiny room and never moving. I thought I lost the kids about 15 times b/c it's impossible to even move in there alone, let alone holding 2 little girls hands. We ended up leaving that room and I know Josh was disappointed in that. I'm sure it's cool, but you just can't even see the tanks and stuff. It was $50 for all of us (Jack was free, the girls were $4 each and we were $19 EACH!, which I think is probably how they make their money, since the kids can't come in alone lol). Speaking of making money, my only REAL complaint on the place is that you are not allowed to leave without going through the gift shop. I mean, I'm no idiot, I get it, they are trying to get you to give in to your kids and buy some stupid $15 stuffed animal they don't need. And trust me, I'm no push-over, I know how to say no to my kids (unlike some people). But the point is, why should I have to put a sour end to a perfectly lovely visit to the aquarium? Everything was fine and dandy until I had to say "no you don't need that" 100 times in a row for the last 5 minutes trying get through the gift shop maze just to get out of the place (it's not even a straight shot, you have to practically go around every single thing in the store). For this reason alone, I would not recommend this place to families with small children. Sorry, but until they can make the gift shop optional, we will not be back. I don't appreciate being hustled, it just left a bad taste in my mouth.

I have heard lots of good things about this place and we were surprised by the decent prices when we looked at the menu. We didn't have to wait to be seated (but this was the case with everywhere we went because we usually got there by 5 so the kids could be eating at their normal dinnertime). I got a half rack of ribs and a margarita. Josh got the "drunken ribeye" and beer, we got all three of the kids a macaroni and cheese dinner (BIG mistake, b/c it's HUGE and comes with fries. talk about carbo-loading. how about a vegetable or some applesauce?) The waiter was good. The ribs were fine. The steak was fine. My mother in-law said her chicken was dry. IDK but we just left kinda feeling like we could have had a better steak dinner at Texas Roadhouse in our town in Ohio. I'm sure that for the locals, it's good, but for us, it seemed like a waste of time when we're only there for a week. I cannot remember exactly how much that dinner was, but I think it was about $85 which was fine since we took home the equivelant of a box of macaroni and cheese and an entire loaf of bread lol. I would say probably 3-4 stars for tourists, and a solid 4 for locals.

J. Edwards
OK, again we were here at what is considered early bird dinner so the menu is smaller and the portions are smaller. I got the 10 oz prime rib and a margarita, Josh got the 20 OZ(!!!!) prime rib (he had to ask b/c it's on the regular menu only) and beer and we split one child's pizza dinner (like the size of a personal pan pizza and it came with fries and he gave us some bread sticks too) between all three of the kids. The desserts looked soooo good and I probably easily could have taken one home, but resisted since I had just had prime rib lol. I would say that the prime rib was really good, probably 4 stars, (however, only equally good when compared to Crabby Mikes because all of the flavor was in the au jus instead of on the meat itself). It was cooked really well (we both ordered med rare and they were both "still kickin", as we say). When the bill came it was $75. They did include tip, but we added another $5 just because it's one of those family owned places his family has been going to forever and the service was pretty good. All around, I'd give it 4 1/2 stars.

Bennetts Calabash Buffet (the one at 9701 N. Kings Hwy)
One big meh. In my opinion this was cruise food. In other words, food made for masses of people that doesn't need to be good, it just has to fill up their stomachs and get them out the door. It was fine, I guess but the add says "120 items" and I'm just wondering if that's counting each and every fried shrimp or what, because there was definitely NOT 120 items. A LOT of the food tasted like KFC. Like the mac & cheese and the seasoning on the breading. It just was...meh. Nothing special at all. In my opinion it was a waste of time. I got the kids chicken tenders and I could hardly cut them with the fork and knife. I did have 2 slices of prime rib because that was actually pretty descent and had some flavor (though no spoon to get any of the au jus???). The T-Bone steaks looked about as hard as rocks so I didn't touch them and I mostly just ate the prime rib and the hush puppies. I forgot to ask anyone that ate the seafood how it was, so **Linda if you had any, feel free to comment on that. Also, the floors were sticky and my margarita was just one big giant shot of tequila (maybe they were trying to liquor me up so I wouldn't notice the food...) Here's the kicker, the buffet is $27 PER PERSON and the kids were $6 each, I think. So total was about $75. For that kind of money, I would expect something MUCH better than that. I would say that 3 stars is MORE than generous and they only get that because the prime rib was decent and I'd rather have all liquor than none at all ;-)

Rioz Brazilian Steakhouse
This is a place that we had heard of through my parents. They go every year to Myrtle Beach and sort of accidentally went here last year. When they walked in, they asked how much it was, because it looked so nice, and were shocked to hear "$35 per person". They decided they'd go somewhere else but as they were leaving the hostess stopped them and said "what can we do to make you stay". They said, "well it's not that, it's just a little more than we had planned to spend tonight". The owner/manager came out and told them, he'd give them 10% off their meal if they'd stay because "our policy is to not let anyone leave before they've tried the food". So they stayed. And they came home just RAVING about it, so we had always planned on going. We were elated to find out that children under 6 are free. (however, in my opinion they should also have a reduced price for children 7-12 because we would never be able to bring the kids when they are over 6). The waiter explained how it worked when we got seated and he said "see if the kids will eat what we have, but if they wont we have food for the small children too. I got them each a plate of the side dishes that were up there and they did eat some of it because they are used to eating a lot of veggies and stuff. But jack just wasn't happy with polenta, mashed potatoes and vegetable salad. Before I could even ask the waiter for some kids food, he just appeared, with plates of mac & cheese, chicken tenders and french fries. It was like magic and I loved it. lol. After Josh and I were done with our side dishes they came and gave us new clean plates and we flipped over our coaster to the green side, which means you are ready for the meat service to start. And oh.em.gee did it ever start! It was amazing. I could hardly keep up with all of the different "gauchos" with all of these different meats on skewers and they'd ask you if you'd like some and they just slice it off onto your plate. Oh my goodness, it was easily the best meal I've ever eaten in my life (and that's saying a lot because I'm a foodie and I'm hard to please when it comes to food). I don't know what the seasoning is that they use but it is soooo delicious. And the meat is sooooo tender and cooked perfectly it just cut like butter. My favorite was the garlic beef, oh and the filet mignon. But the bacon wrapped chicken and bacon wrapped steak medalions were also amazing. Oh who am I kidding, it was ALL amazing! I was actually glad that I hadn't liked very much of the side dishes on the buffet, because I was already stuffed by the end. It was hard because the food was sooo good and you just want to keep eating, but you can't. We did also, get desserts and brought them home. My chocolate mousse cake was just amazing!! Josh's turtle cheesecake met an untimely demise in the cooler on the way back to Ohio. It was rescued, but still wasn't all that great. I think there was just a LOT of cheesecake and not much crust/topping so the ratio wasn't right. SO, for 2 dinners, 1 margarita, 1 beer and 2 desserts, before tip, it was $105 and WELL worth it. Now, I'm just not sure what we'll do if we go back when the kids are older lol. Oh and the strangest thing is, it's owned by the same people that own T-Bonz, but we had two totally different experiences. Anyway, Rioz is an easy 5 stars. The only time I would NOT recommend it is if you are a picky eater who also doesn't like much meat or if all of your kids are in the 7-12 range and don't eat very much.









Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Vacation by the numbers

Ok, I'm stealing this from Danifred because it was such a great idea

5: number of new words jack learned while on vacation (CHEESE!, all done, water, up and down)
26: total number of hours in the car
5,279: number of times we were asked "when are we gonna get there"
3: total hours sitting in traffic
2: number of screens attached to our new DVD player
3: number of screens we needed
4: DVD's watched by the girls in the car
2: new toys Jack got for the trip
1,467,598: shells the girls collected
83: shells that were unbroken (and almost all of those were collected by Maria)
9: people in the beach house
5: bedrooms in the beach house
7: new t-shirts
236: photos taken by me
7: photos taken by Josh
78: bottles of water consumed
12: games of "hand and foot" we played
3: times I called it "foot and mouth"
23: attempts at a good family picture on the beach
0: actual number of good family pics on the beach
4,762,485: granules of sand Jackson ate or got in his eyes
1: bottle of spf 65 we used up
1: bottle of spf 40 we used up
6: days on the beach
7: dinners out
5: times the kids ate macaroni and cheese
7: loads of beach laundry
3: number of loads that were Sophia's sheets!
3,894,512: waves enjoyed by ALL
23: waves that knocked me down
2: waves that knocked Joshs Grandma down!
16: beers Josh drank
6: margaritas I drank
4: plates of fruit the girls EACH ate after dinner at Crabby Mikes after our first full day on the beach
1: day it took for the girls to ask "can we go to the beach" after we got home
50: times we've talked about where we're going next year

Monday, August 23, 2010

a few pics...

Just a few of my favorite pics from vacation.

(I promise I will have an actual blog post coming tomorrow. I just swear there aren't enough hours in the day!)

She said "Mommy, take my picca. Do I look beautiful?" I said "always"

I didn't realize it at the time, but i took about twice as many pics of Jack than the girls and almost every single one is amazing.

Could she be any more beautiful? seriously. And btw when the heck did she grow up so fast!?

All of us that stayed in the beach house for the week (Us, Joshs mom and little brother and his grandparents)

Saturday, July 31, 2010


Here's a little brilliance I found over on Danifreds blog and just had to share over here.
I would also like to add that all of that is for ONE child. When you have 2 or 3 and they are all very young and very close in age you can add what half of my day is consumed with...FIGHTING and WHINING! (and not having enough hands to even go out in public alone because they are too young to walk by themselves in the company of strangers and moving vehicles).

Friday, July 23, 2010

Friday Night Leftovers

Is it Friday already!? OMG this week went so fast for me. Anyway, here are my leftovers
  • I ordered 20 Cleveland Browns tickets today for Nov 7th. I'm surprising Josh this year for his birthday with Tailgating and Browns game with his friends and family instead of just a bonfire. He's been working so hard this year, he really deserves it! Every year he says how great that would be, so this year, he's getting it! BTW, I have no idea how to tell him about it. Any good ideas would be appreciated.
  • My house is a mess. No, seriously, a disaster area. There are toys all over the house, the dishwasher needs done and I have two loads of laundry on the couch waiting to be folded. It's been so flipping hot today, though that I can't even begin to do any of it, especially after a day of chasing after 3 little ones.
  • Vacation countdown...3 weeks! :D I.CAN'T.WAIT. (and neither can the kids, btw)
  • You know what I hate? HYPOCRISY. I hate it like nothing else in this world. Like when someone creates drama out of nothing and then they bitch about other people starting drama just to make themselves look better. I just hate that. Or like when someone tries to make up with them and they say they aren't interested, then they go around saying that they wish that person would make up with them. Or like when someone says that they are a good Christian and they go around saying that anyone who doesnt have a college education is useless or that stay at home moms (and dads) are setting a bad example for their kids because they are lazy and unmotivated. Not very "Christian" is it. Just sayin.
  • I bought a winter coat today. It's 98 degrees outside. But it was on sale and I haven't had a winter coat in 2 years that actually fit, plus I had a gift card from my birthday I still haven't used. Totally justified. (also I NEVER buy clothes for myself...hence the 2 years thing).

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The runner

Dear Jackson,
Here is a list of times and places when running is appropriate.
  • You are being chased by a dog, serial killer, debt collector. Really ANY time you're being chased
  • You are on the track team
  • Your house is on fire
  • Your car is about to explode
  • Someone is trying to have sex with you and you are under the age of....40 ;-)

And here is a list of times that your running was not appreciated

  • You wanted to see the cows, but your daddy didn't know that...
  • You wanted to see Grandmas neighbors backyard while she was playing with your sisters and Dakota
  • You wanted to visit your Grandpa and Linda but everyone else was going inside
  • You saw something shiny...across the street, while we were at the park

We have definitely had some close calls because of your running, and I would appreciate it if from now on you would take daddy and I seriously when we scream "Jack, stop!". The giggling is cute, but could definitely get dangerous once you get faster than us.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Way back Wednesday

As promised, a WBW post. If you'd like to join in and do one of your own, post 1 to 1,000,000 old family pics, stories, whatever and then just link back to me.

This is Joshs Grandma Shirley, her sister and their Mom in about 1926.

This is a portrait of Shirley that she sent to Bob when they were dating (it was in one of the love letters and then I found an 8X10 of the same photo). I just think it's so gorgeous and I really think that other than her nose, Maria looks a lot like her.

This is not the greatest picture but it is her parents at her and Bobs wedding. Her mom looks so incredibly British here, it just cracks me up.
This is Shirleys Grandfather who has a truly amazing life story that I will share with you all one day. This was probably taken around 1905.

And now, the most amazing one of all. This would be Shirleys Great-Great-Great-Great-Great-Grandfather who lived from 1688-1769 and was a Reverend in England. I actually got a tear in my eye when I found this. The original is still hanging in the church where he preached.

Friday, July 9, 2010

friday night leftovers

The leftover action is back and I'm getting back into it too.

  • Josh hit the old family photo motherload a couple nights ago at his grandma's house. He brought back some of the most beautiful pictures and a year of love letters between his grandparents that brought me to tears more than once. I always knew that their love was real, but wow. And the more I read, the more I see that she and I were a LOT alike. I have an entire letter here that she wrote in 1947, that I EASILY could have written last week (except for all the "shall's"). Anyway, I'm planning on starting my "way-back wednesdays" back up, if people still like them.
  • I've been GLUED to ancestry.com for the last week (I got 2 weeks free). I'm trying to get as much out of it as I can because I really don't want to pay for it (yes, I am THAT cheap lol). I've done REALLY well, too and I actually think I'll be "done" (if that's ever possible) by next week.
  • My bestie of 20 YEARS (omg, I'm old! I can't believe I've had a friend since I was 6!) came to town and I was soo happy she agreed to meet us at the park on Tuesday. I had already promised the girls we'd go. So it was really nice to catch up with her. If you'd like to follow along with her she just started blogging about her life, hubby, family, IF issues, etc. at www.lifeonwindyhill.blogspot.com
  • It's been so un-Godly H.O.T.T. here, that I can't even freaking stand it. Summer is generally not my favorite time of year (it's all the sweating and the feeling dirty all.the.time.), but DEFINITELY not when it's 98 degrees every flippin day. And when we don't have central air, it's downright unbearable. The rain today was supposed to cool it off, but no such luck. "Cooled off" is 84 and HUMID...blargh. Call me when it's fall. THAT is when I'll be back to my happy self again.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Total awesomeness

I don't know about you all, but we had a GREAT 4th of July. Seriously, the best holiday we've had in a long time (IDK if you've noticed but holidays don't really like us/me too much).

Saturday Josh didn't have to work! Yes folks, that's right we got an actual weekend Memorial day weekend AND 4th of July weekend. It was soooo nice. We literally did nothing. It feels like we or Josh always have something to do, so it was really nice to spend the day doing nothing. Then that night the kids and I came in to relax and Josh went up to the farm to help them out baling hay.

Sunday we went over to Joshs moms house and had a really relaxing picnic with all of that side of the family. I got some good info on his grandparents so I can finally start on their side of the genealogy. I've got a really good starting point and they told me I could come over this week and get some pictures and apparantly they have a book with a bunch of info in it. Anyway, we just spent the afternoon hanging out and talking. Then we left there and went to the park we always go to for fireworks and stuff. We got sooo incredibly lucky and actually got a parking spot near where we sat. Granted, we had to drive around 3 times and I had to stand in the spot while Josh came back around, which got some nasty looks, but IDK what we would have done otherwise.
The girls played on the playground
and got their faces painted (I think Sophia's going to be in the paper getting hers done).
and went in the bouncy house and DIDN'T get to ride on a pony because they were only there for 2 hours and they packed up at the speed of light (7:03...."we packed them up at 7"...). Anyway, once they got over that disappointment (and I decided not to be too mad about it) we went and played on another playground and just hung out until the fireworks started. OH and the best part...the people watching. Going to an event like this (where the hoopies come out in full force) really makes us feel better about ourselves. It's times like those when we see how incredibly smart and pretty and classy we really are. Oh and our kids are quite possibly the best in the world (at least it felt that way) LOL. We left with so much self confidence we were almost full of ourselves. Hopefully it'll last until next year...or at least until the fair. ;-)
The fireworks were AH-MAZING as they always are. (however, impossible to get a picture of)
I was soooo incredibly happy listening to the girls giggling and Jack ohh-ing while we watched them. It was a perfect moment in life that I'll always remember. And about 10 minutes into it Sophia stops giggling and she looks at me with a serious look on her face, puts her hand on my arm and says....."mommy...can I have another twizzler". :D It was perfect. It was just so, Pia to be thinking about food at that moment. It was great. And the funniest thing was the end when we were literally throwing everything in the car (including the kids) trying to get out before the crowd starts leaving, because at that point it's just a lost cause and we would just wait until it's all over (like last year). So we finally get in the car after all that and we're sweating and out of breath and laughing so hard and we pull out and Maria says "Mommy, what is wrong with you guys! Why you running all around and being so silly with Daddy!". I said "because, it is a little known fact, that I am, in fact, a silly mommy". She says "No Mommy, I already know you silly".

Thursday, July 1, 2010

getting back in the game

OK, I'm quite sure you've all noticed my horrid blogging practices lately. I mean 3 posts in a month? Totally unacceptable! I'm ashamed of myself. Ok, not quite, but I do feel like I need to get back in the game a little bit here. So I'll be trying my hardest to blog 3 times a week, even if it's just something short and sweet, it'll be something.

Fathers day came and went without major event. We moved Josh's mom into her new house that weekend, then we went back over there to help her with some stuff. Then we visited with his dad for a little while. It was difficult because he had to work until about 9:00 so as soon as he got home we got the girls shoes on and headed over. As we were walking over we saw that Josh's brothers wife pulled in with her kids so we had to turn around and go back home. We sat there waiting (keeping the kids up waaaaay past their bedtimes) for them to leave. After a half an hour we finally just decided to go over and completely ignore her. After a little while, she finally got the hint and left. But still, it was almost 10 o'clock so the girls didn't get to bed until after 10:30, which I don't think they've ever done. We were sitting there trying to talk and they were begging to go home and go to bed. So that night Josh and I talked about how maybe we should sit down and talk with them (Travis and Candy) to try to make up. I mean after the things she has said and done, we wont ever be best friends, but the least we could do is try to work through some of it to try to make up. I emailed Josh's brother the next day and 2 days later he sent me an email back that said they have no intention of EVER making up with us. nice. So needless to say when I read the email to Josh he was beyond disappointed in his brother and what he has become since being with that woman.
However, in spite of that, it was still a relaxing weekend and it was great to see a REAL father in action. We are soooo lucky to have Josh. I can't tell him that enough. I'm sure my friends on facebook get sick of hearing it, but I really don't care. We are blessed to have each other and have such love in our home that so many other people don't have. We have chosen to raise our kids differently than I was raised. We shower our kids with love and compliments. We will try to build the bonds between them, instead of forcing them to take sides. And he would never dream of going a year without seeing them. I am so happy to have Josh as my partner in this life. And the kids will grow up knowing how lucky they are to have him as their father.

Last weekend Josh went over and offered to cut down a dead tree in his dads yard because he was worried about someone getting hurt. Branches kept just randomly falling down (and when I say branches, I mean HUGE tree limbs). So that was quite a sight. Every time he would cut a limb down, it would come crashing to the ground into little pieces and the kids would yell over there from our deck "ooooooohh!" lol. It was really cute. They didn't get all the way finished, but probably halfway.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Yes, I know it's Wednesday

I know it's not Friday, but I feel like I need to post since I've slacked for the last couple weeks and I don't have enough for a full post. So here are my leftovers.

  • Jackson has started getting a little...ok, a LOT possessive of me. I'm obviously happy that all my kids love me so much, but the boy is starting some UFC-type battles over who gets to sit on my lap/hold my hand/lay their head on my leg. It's cute and scary all at the same time. The girls are used to getting my full affection, and they aren't too keen on the competition. LOL
  • Ummm what the hell is up with this gulf coast oil spill crap? I mean, come on people! They should have had this stuff cleaned up right after it happened. There were about 50 different GREAT ideas, but they were "too expensive". Well, I bet those options are looking pretty good right about now, aren't they. And where the heck is Obama during this. He wants to stick his nose in every business in the country, but the ONE time it's needed, he wimps out.
  • The girls were cracking us up tonight digging for and playing with worms in their dresses. They just HAD to wear these dresses (and of course bows). But they're out there for 2 minutes and they're covered in dirt and playing with the worms like a couple of boys. It was great. It's just so...them. They can be very girly girls and they can be the biggest tom-boys at the same time. We heart them.
  • I watched a couple episodes of Bridezillas the other day, and the same thought kept going through my head...what kind of man would marry these women!? Planning my wedding was the easiest thing I've ever done. Josh and I never had a single fight over anything. And if I had treated him or my family or friends the way these women, do I would EXPECT for the guy to leave me. I always wonder how many of these marriages make it through the first two years.
  • I received the official e-mail from my step-dad today. They don't want anything to do with us anymore. I told him that all I need is an apology from my mom about the way she treated me my whole life (and on Mothers Day) and he said "you had a great childhood, I don't know what you're talking about". Ooooookay then. There's nothing I can say back to that steaming pile of crap, so I said "I'm done" and he said "well have a nice life then". Of course that was after he threatened to beat the shit out of Josh. ya. really nice. IDK. I'm emotionally drained from the situation and I don't know what to say anymore. I know the truth and they can continue to believe what they want to believe. I can't change them. I'm "giving it to God" as my friend would say.
  • Josh is contemplating selling his truck and his car (hot rods, not everyday vehicles) and putting all the money towards something more "practical" (something with a back seat for the kids so we don't have to drive seperately to car shows and stuff). He had some issues with his truck on Sunday on the way out the driveway to a car show. He finally (after an hour...or more) got it running and made it to the gas station, but ran into some...uh problems when he tried to start it up again. He ended up having to have the thing towed back home by some of his friends. We'll see what, if anything, ends up happening with that.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

a fine line

I think that in life, we all walk very fine lines. We do it with everything, big and small. How much to work, and how much to play. Not being able to forgive or forgiving too easily. Not letting yourself have enough fun or having too much fun (come on, we've all been there!). When to hold a grudge and when to be the "let go and let live". How much to say and how much to hold back.

I've constantly struggled with the last one. I feel like no matter how much I hold back, everyone else always says whatever they want to/about me, so what's the point in me trying to be the "bigger person". I'm constantly biting my tongue when I'm with family or in-laws. They do or say things to me that they would just DIE if I said to them. I feel like screaming "It's called self-awareness...GET SOME!" Then of course, there's that time when you say something you've been holding on to for.ev.er. and the minute the words leave your lips you wish you could take take them back.

In order to prevent this from happening, I wrote my mother a letter...an 8 page letter...that was edited from 9 1/2 pages. I wrote this letter over a week ago and it's been sitting on the dining room table since then. I just can't decide if it's too much or not enough. I mean, we're talking about a lifetime of shit here. Of course, how much do I need to let go of and just forgive (even though there was never an apology).

I mentioned before, I think I'm going through a "funk" right now. I can't stop thinking of moving and getting the hell away from all of these people. I mean, is there any proof that spending 26 years surrounded by crazy people will eventually make you insane? I may be an interesting case study, if so. I feel like I just can't win. No matter what I do or say, it's wrong. No matter how I feel about something, I'm told not to have those feelings. I'm an adult, and yet I sit here worrying soooo much about what my parents and my in-laws think about me and say about me behind my back. What the hell do I care? I shouldn't! And yet, when I'm surrounded by people only telling me what I'm doing wrong, it's hard for me to see that I've done anything right. At this point, the only positive things in my life are Josh and the kids. If I didn't get the compliments from them that I get, I'd be in Seattle right now. I just feel like telling everyone else to go to hell. And the more I keep these things from them, the more I worry that I might just blurt that out at the next family dinner. I've got friends I haven't actually seen since high school that care more about me than my own family does. All they seem to care about is blaming me for LITERALLY everything. Then when I do try to talk to someone about it, they don't care, all they want to talk about is their own made up issues or the weather.

I'm walking a fine line between making myself happy and making everyone else happy. Where is the middle. Is there a middle?

Monday, May 31, 2010

a couple things...

So, Daddy built them a swing set last weekend and it's been the cause for lots and lots of giggles all week...from everyone in the house. It's 10ft tall. No joke. Because Josh thought 8ft wouldn't be quite tall enough for our 3ft tall children lol. We've both been making jokes about it ever since it went up. He came in the house and goes "uhhh hey, could you call Labron James to come hang up these swings for me". I go out there and see it with my own eyes. I say "hunny, you know the kids are ours right?" (he's 5'5" and I'm 5'2"...and Maria has a medical condition literally called "short stature"). He hung up the swings with the original chain that they came with and they came up to the girls heads...cue jokes, and jokes, and jokes... Anyway, after 8ft of extra chain, it's great and I can't wait until next year when we build the tower and slide part.

Me and Pia pants hanging out outside. (no, I wont cut her bangs, I'm trying to grow them out, they're just in an awkward phase right now)

This picture cracks me up. I love the teeth and the squinty eyes. Precious.

Maria had her last day of school on Wed. Yes, I cried...I sobbed in fact. Hey, they played the song "let them be little" and read a poem entitled "we give them back to you". Trust me, they wanted some tears...and they got them. She has grown sooooo much since the first day of school. She has really come a long way in the last 9 months.
Maria on the first day...
and on the last.
The girls on the first day...

and on the last day.
big tear...

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Things I'm interested in

"We did not think of the great open plains, the beautiful rolling hills, and the winding streams with tangled growth as wild. Only to the white man was nature a wilderness and only to him was the land infested with wild animals and savage people. To us it was tame. Earth was bountiful and we were surrounded with the blessings of the Great Mystery. Not until the hairy man from the east came and with brutal frenzy heaped injustices upon us and the families we loved was it wild for us. When the very animals of the forest began fleeing from his approach, then it was for us that the Wild West began."
-Luther Standing Bear, Sioux Chief

This picture of him, breaks my heart a little bit. He was one of the children taken from his home and put in the Carlisle Indian School. They were punished for speaking their own language and wearing their own clothes. Their hair was cut (which was a HUGE deal for them because they would only do that in times of great mourning). Their parents were told that they were going there to learn how to speak and write English. They had no idea what they really wanted was for them to "forsake the ways of their fathers".

Luther, Standing Bear ended up using the English he learned to write books, sharing with the world the truth of the injustice that was done to his people. He also eventually started acting in some of the original "wild west" movies. His hope was that the "white man" would see how wrong they were. Unfortunately that didn't start to happen until decades after his death.

Monday, May 24, 2010

My favorites

I got this idea from Danifred (though, if I remember correctly she got it from someone else).

In honor of my birthday, I'm going to do a list of my favorite things.

Hearing "you're the best Mommy in the whooooole world" every day This one's self explanatory. Who wouldn't love that?! However a close second is when they tell me "I will miss yoooou" 15 times in a row, every time I walk out the door. It's precious.
Moose Tracks Ice cream I used to eat it all the time in high school, with my friends at lunch time, and it still brings back memories when I eat it now.
Pawn Stars This show is awesome. It's all my favorite things rolled into one. I'm always drooling over all of the historical stuff people bring in there and I'm always yelling at the TV when they sell it too cheap...or at all (I'm talking about YOU, guy who sold his revolutionary war bond made by Paul Revere for a couple grand and a guitar!!).
Falling in Love by Philosophy. It's my signature scent. Honestly, It's the only perfume I've worn in years...I'm actually running low in case anyone's looking to get me a belated B-Day gift ;-)
History ANY kind of history. I'm always reading, researching, googling, watching documentaries, any way I can get my brain around some good history is good with me. It just really fascinates me how different and yet how similar we are to the people that lived hundreds or even thousands of years ago. I always tell Josh that if we win the lottery, our new house will be like a little mini-museum with all kinds of cool artifacts and antiques.
Jeopardy I know it's corny, but I love watching to see how many answers I know in a show. Everyone's always telling me to try out, which IS on my bucket list, but I've got at least another decade of learning to do before I'd feel really comfortable going for it.
Edward S. Curtis. He's my all-time favorite photographer. Even though he really only photographed one particular genre (Native Americans) he did it so incredibly well, that I can't help but cry when I look at some of his photographs.
***side note*** my birthday gift this year was 2 of his books, a book about our founding fathers and a travel book about Europe...and I couldn't be happier :D

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Not sure...

Right now, I'm not really sure about much. I'm definitely in a funk. I would say that I am only my normal happy, bubbly self half of the time. I'm still mentally trying to process what is going on between my mom and I. It's such and an unusual relationship that really doesn't have a beginning to the crazy. At this point, I'm just hoping it has an end. I'm hoping that she gets some serious help for her anger and learns to control it ASAP. Because as of right now, and the last 26 years, IT'S been controlling HER. It's not healthy (physically) and it certainly hasn't done me any favors.
I feel bad for my sisters, and honestly, I feel kind of bad for myself, which is a bit of an unusual feeling for me. Growing up, I was always the girl that smiled when I wanted to cry and made a joke when I was feeling like giving up. I had a bit of a sappy conversation with Josh about love...REAL love. And how when I met him I had been so brainwashed by my mom that I honestly believed that love meant always agreeing and always giving in and never having your own opinions about anything. My relationship with Josh was the most unusual and eye-opening of my life. HE showed me that two people could disagree and still love each other. We could be our own people and still be in love. We could fight and not have it be the end of our love. With my mom, none of those things are true. They never have been and they never will be.
I feel so incredibly sorry for my sisters right now, because I have been where they are. They say things to me like "you obviously don't love mom or you'd do what she wants" and if Josh and I disagree with something they say, it's "oh, wow, I'm sorry, I thought you guys loved us". It breaks my heart that they think that is what love is. I wish I could shake them and tell them there is love out there that doesn't come with strings and ultimatums. Unfortunately, they wouldn't get it anyway. They live in their own little bubbles where nothing bad has ever happened to them. The most stress they've ever experienced is a lot of homework or a shitty boyfriend. I'm glad that they haven't experience real pain, but it hurts me that they wont know real love when they see it. I know I didn't. I tested the waters with Josh more than a time or two. I probably still do. I think I still expect him to give up on me and leave, even though I KNOW that he wont. There is this little voice in my head that will always be saying "you're not good enough" and for some reason I can't shut it up completely no matter how hard I try.
Today's my Birthday. I've been alive for 26 years. I don't know what else to say about that. I think I'll do a "my favorites" post tomorrow. I'm just not in the mood today. I got 50 facebook happy birthdays from people I haven't seen since high school, my husbands family and some women I "know" only because we share the same rare disorder. But I didn't get one from my mom, my dad, my step-dad, two of my sisters and 2 of 3 of my grandparents. I don't really know how I feel about that either. I keep trying to talk Josh into moving, but unless we win the lottery, it's probably not going to happen. Until then I dream of somewhere far away...Montana or Wyoming maybe. Somewhere that I can sit in my pool on a hot day and look up at snow-capped mountains. Somewhere I can be myself and not feel bad about it.
The only thing I'm really sure of right now is THANK GOD FOR JOSH. He is the definition of "my rock".

Monday, May 10, 2010

my mothers day promises to my children

I love my life as a mother. I love my children and I love my husband. Honestly, life is really good for all of us right now. But I fucking HATE mothers day. I love the kids getting me "gifts" and getting all excited to give me flowers and handmade cards. It's the other people that get in the way...sort of like Christmas. If it weren't for certain family members, Christmas would be pure perfection. These people are the reason we thought about moving...like to another state. It is physically exhausting having to deal with their moods and not knowing why I'm being yelled at like a 10 yr old. I can't keep up with the drama anymore. I'm just ill-equipped. In our house, if you are upset with someone, you tell them. You say "hey, I don't like that, could ya not?" and that's it. It's been 8 BLISSFUL years since I've lived in a house where I was afraid to make a noise for fear of the beatings and the screaming and the name calling and the "if you weren't my daughter I would never want to see you again" and the "i can't even stand to look at you" etc... But it all came flooding back to me yesterday. And honestly, maybe I'm grateful for it. It has definitely shown me what I will never let myself become as a mother.

Here are the promises I make to my children...
  • I will never have favorites amongst my children. My sisters have this lovely little naive way of blaming me for the way my mom has treated me my whole life. But that's not their fault, they were all treated like princesses. The worst they ever got was a spanking and "don't do that again". They have no idea what fear really is. They don't know what it's like to have your head slammed into the corner of your headboard and have no idea why. They don't know what it was like to be beaten with my math book for getting a D on a test. They don't know what it was like last year to hear my Dr. tell me that my MRI showed multiple unexplained concussions. All I could say was "I had a lot of accidents as a child". There I was lying for her/them at 25 yrs old, like a brainwashed idiot. I am thankful that my sisters never knew that pain and fear, but I really wish they would stop judging me for it, because they've never lived my life or even TRIED to walk in my shoes for a minute.
  • I will be a milk and cookies mom. My whole life, I yearned for my own mother to hug me or let me talk about my bad day and say "come on honey sit down and we can talk about it". I want to be the soft place for my kids to land, most especially after a hard day. When something bad happens, I want them to be thinking "I can't wait until I can go home and talk to my mom about this and get one of her hugs".
  • I will be their strongest advocates. My mom ALWAYS no matter who or what it was, she always took the other persons side. It didn't matter if it was a fight with a friend, a bully at school, or whatever. It was always my fault and the other person was always right. always.
  • I will help them with their homework. I often wonder if my 3.8 GPA would have been a 4.0 if I had had at least one parent who had a few minutes to help me with my homework. (which is ironic because I was mostly beaten for getting "bad" grades.
  • I will be patient and kind, especially when it's hard.
  • I will be respected, not because I simply gave birth to them and changed their dirty diapers, but because I actually EARNED it.
  • I will never lie about them to anyone...and I will TRY never to lie to them (that one gets dicey around Christmas and birthdays lol)
  • I will CONTROL MY TEMPER AND MY ANGER. This one has been an issue for my mom her whole life, but in the last 6 months I have seen it get to a point that is unhealthy. She NEEDS anger management classes or a counselor or something or she'll have a heart attack the next time the grocery store is out of corn on the cob. The only time I have ever had anger like that, was during my PPD and that kind of anger is not good. not good at all.
  • I will NEVER put a guilt trip on them the size of Texas.
  • I will tell them I love them every single day, no matter what.
  • My love will always be unconditional. I can't even tell you how many times I've heard the phrase "if you loved me you would...". During my childhood it was things like ..."get better grades", ..."do what I say", etc. at christmas, it was ..."come over here on christmas day" (and ...do what I say). Before I met Josh, I thought that love meant always agreeing on everything and always doing what the other person told you to. I had no idea that there was something out there called unconditional love where you are allowed to disagree and still love each other. Unfortunately, my mom still has no idea what unconditional love is and she has brainwashed my sisters the same as she did me. They are always telling me "if you loved mom, you would do what she wants". THAT'S NOT LOVE PEOPLE!!
  • I will NEVER, EVER say the words "I don't hate you, I just hate everything about you" to my children. This was something I heard probably weekly. And as usual, it was for NOTHING. But it's something NO child should ever have to hear.
  • I will praise them more than I discipline them. I have already made this a priority and I think it works. It lets them know that just because they have to stand in the corner for doing something bad, doesn't mean I don't love them or think they are amazing kids.
  • I will never tell them they are "too fat to wear that".
  • I will NEVER bad-mouth one of my children to another (or to any family/friend)
  • I will be a better mom than those before me. I will learn from their mistakes and I will not repeat the cycle as it has been repeated for generations in this family.

I love my children enough to fight this gene pool. When I was a teenager I always told people "I don't EVER want to have children". It wasn't because I didn't like kids, it was because I was afraid that I had no control over whether or not I end up like my mother and my grandmother. I'm an adult now, and I KNOW that the way we act, ESPECIALLY with our children is CHOICE. Since becoming a parent I have lost what little respect I had for my mom and my biological dad. I'm pretty sure it's supposed to go the other way, but it just doesn't. I look at my kids and can't even imagine saying and doing the things that she did. And I definitely can't imagine seeing them once a year like my dad did my whole life. Josh told me last night that it was a miracle I ended up as normal as I am with all that crap I've dealt with my whole life. I don't know if it was a miracle or if it was just determination, but I am so glad that my life ended up this way. I'm so glad that I didn't let fear stop me from having these 3 amazing kids. The are the only thing that made my mothers day bearable yesterday (well that, and josh yelling at my mom that she "makes a big fucking deal about nothing and it's retarded". that was sooooooo awesome. I have never loved him more ;-)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mothers day gifts, big and small

When Maria came home from school on Wednesday, she was sooo excited to give me her gifts. I told her that she could wait until Sunday, but she insisted. What I got was BEAUTIFUL and perfect.

This is my mother (and there is a picture she drew of me). Her name is Mom. She is about old, old, old years old (gee thanks). She has green eyes and black hair. She weighs 2 pounds (ok seriously thank you for that one). Her favorite food is mac & cheese (no, that's YOUR favorite food lol). She's smart and she knows all about saving me from Pia because she hits me. (I LOL'ed so hard at that). When she's not with me, she spends her time cleaning up. Best of all, mother likes to turn off the TV. Mother takes care of me by giving me good food and hugs. I think my mother is best in the world because I love her. If I could wish for anything in the world for my mother, it would be flowers. Love Maria

And this one made me bawl my eyes out...which then upset Maria because she thought I didn't like it...epic "mommy" fail. I then spent the day explaining to her that sometimes we cry because we are soooo happy and love someone soooo much.

Sometimes you get discouraged because I am so small
And always leave my fingerprints on furniture and walls

But everyday I am growing up and soon I'll be so tall
That all those little hand prints will be hard to recall.

So here's a final hand print just so you can say
This is how my fingers looked on this Mother's Day!

I'll have pics of Mother's Day and a recap of the day, tomorrow.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

leftovers and wordless wednesday...all on the wrong days

This is really just a hodge podge because I haven't really had anything interesting to say in the last week that would constitute an entire blog.

  • How cute is this picture of Jack? Seriously, I love it. It's definitely worthy of WW status.

  • Speaking of pictures, yes, this is in fact a strawberry shaped like...uhh...well, a rack...I'm sorry, I know it's juvenile, but it has been cracking Josh and I up for two days. that's just the immature sense of humor we have, and I LOVE it.

  • We had to reschedule our family pictures because they were supposed to be Sunday, but because of the storms, obviously that didn't happen. We are actually doing them at my moms house with all 10 of us for her 50th birthday gift. She's been talking about having family pics taken for years and just hasn't done it, so we thought we'd do it for her. lol. Of course I have no room to talk since I wanted to get them since last year for my birthday, but Josh didn't want to spend $700 on pics. (tangent: this I THINK, is what my EPSIL (evil psychotic sister in law) was referring to one time when she said that I "forced Josh to buy $700 patio furniture"????, when in actuality that furniture was cheapo stuff that Josh wanted and got from big lots. I guess since she wins every argument in her house, she thinks I do too. It must be unusual for someone like her to understand a couple making decisions TOGETHER. lol. ok tangent over.)

  • Sophia has been calling Maria "Somia". I think this is what's going on in her head...if Pia=Sophia then Mia should=Somia. Pretty good logic if you think about it.
  • It's officially 100 days until our vacation!! And if ANYONE deserves a vacation, it's us! We've spent the last 5 1/2 years having babies, taking care of them, paying our bills, working hard & doing the right thing. So now that we are practically debt free (obviously we still owe on our mortgage and car) we can finally go on a vacation the RIGHT way. Without having other bills we can't pay or paying for it with a credit card. We are so excited and now our kids will appreciate it so much more. Hopefully they will grow up to be responsible like us and not grow up feeling entitled to things like that.
  • Josh got all of our plants for our garden yesterday. Last year was just a trial run to see what we liked/used so this year will HOPEFULLY be totally used. We got 24 tomato plants, 2 peppers, 1 cucumber & 2 strawberry. Also, I got the seeds the other day for corn, pickling cucumbers, pie pumpkins & carrots. I'm hoping to get a little more spaghetti sauce out of this years. We just ran out a couple weeks ago and I had to get store-bought. Once you've had homemade, the store stuff is like eating plain tomato sauce out of a can. LOL. For some reason, my green beans from last year all have a funny...like pasty? kind of taste, so I don't think we'll do them this year, however I did get some seeds. It'll really depend on if we have the space.
  • When we went to pick up the plants last night, we stopped at the place where we used to go get ice cream after Maria was born. We'd walk up there every night, and it was just really nice. However, they closed it down a while back, so Josh was all excited when he came home from work last night and said "they opened it up again, we have to go tonight!". It was so cute. The problem now becomes that we sold the double stroller and IDK about having the kids walk the mile on a rural road with no sidewalks. But it would be stupid to drive a mile, ya know?