About Me

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Like all of you, I'm a number of things to a number of people...Navy wife, homeschooling mama, educated woman and aspiring writer. Read my thoughts on all of it here. Please feel free to leave your thoughts on all of it too!

Monday, March 30, 2009

In Comparison

As human beings it's hard not to compare ourselves to others. As women it's hard not to compare ourselves to others. As mothers it's hard not to compare ourselves to others. It's also hard not to compare our children to other children...but today I'm finding it down right impossible not to compare my kids to each other!

Jace is sick. I can't even remember the last time he looked this sad, especially for this long! For two days now he's been asleep more than he's been awake. His fever comes and goes. He's not vomiting or anything yucky like that...he just feels completely worn out. We went to the doctor today and found out why...an ear infection. His body is fighting it like it should be, but that requires a lot of his energy and leaves him with very little left to be a five year old boy.

On the other hand, Gracie is not sick. She feels free to be the energetic three year old that she is. Jace is usually the calmer of the two anyway, but today the contrast is magnified. He slept in the car on the way home from the doctors. Gracie sang loudly. Jace is cuddled on the couch, sleeping again. Gracie is running from one end of the living room to the other, chasing Tyler. They're both giggling and laughing. I have no idea how Jace sleeps through all of this!

Hopefully in a day or two I will have three excitable children back and today's comparison will be long gone. Well children are less likely to be compared to their well siblings...they're all loud when feeling good!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Job Updates

It's so funny that I just wrote about what the kids might want to be when they grow up. Yesterday they both came up with something new that I haven't heard them be interested in before! I thought I'd share...

Gracie would like to be on TV. She's thinking maybe Dancing with the Stars. I asked if she would be a star or a professional dancer and she'd like to be a dancer. She's got the legs for it! She's got 5 year old legs and she's three. Who knows, maybe she'll be both...a dancer and a star!

And Jace is quite interested in studying whale sharks. I think that means he'd be a marine biologist. I think that sounds like a fun and exciting career choice. I hope he'll be able to support on his researcher's salary.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

On Tyler's Terms

Do you ever play the game of trying to figure out what your little ones will be as adults based on their personalities as kids? I find it endlessly entertaining!

From early on we have thought that Jace might be a priest or teacher. He has huge hands and talks with them all the time, especially when he's standing at the top of the playground. Right now, he's leaning more toward firefighter, police man, or tow truck driver. "Something in the helping professions," he says.

Gracie's a little harder to figure out. She wants to do every job imaginable but keeps telling us about the fleet of trucks she's going to have...car transporter trucks, tow trucks, dump trucks, container trucks. She could definitely hold her own ordering around a bunch of truckers too! I think she's going to need an artistic outlet in her life though. Weekly karoake might be enough, or maybe she'll try for the big time. She's quite the ham in front of a camera too. She can be her own sort of triple threat...model/singer/trucking company owner!

And Tyler...he's only 15 months old, so I have some time to determine his career path. For now, though, I see him as a coach. I was thinking attorney for a while because, if he could write and talk, I think he'd present me with a list of his terms. He brings toys to us, but he presents them on one side of us and has to get up on the other side. If we try to pick him up at the same time he gives us the toy on he squirms and squeals until we put him down. Then he runs away, smiles at us for a second, and comes back to the proper side to be picked up!

(If any of you are attorneys, I apologize for the stereotype I'm about to write.)

I decided being a lawyer isn't for Tyler, though, because he's too fun loving. He loves to run in the yard, or down the driveway toward the road...gotta watch him closely! He goes straight to a ball when we head outside and loves to throw it and kick it, although I think the kicking is accidental. So, I started thinking about sports. I can see him being a friendly, inspiring high school teacher. I'm not sure what subject yet, though. And after school, he'll head to the field or court or pool and have everybody sweating in no time.

I think he'll be fair, comedic, tough, and caring. But you'd better believe that if your son or daughter is on his team, he or she better do what they're told. If you don't play by Tyler's terms you're likely to get hit with a toy truck!

Monday, March 23, 2009

How I Really Feel About Technology

I've been hearing all about this twittering thing lately. I don't know, maybe there's a place for it, but who needs to know my every thought...really? They've already found people using it at inappropriate times. Congressmen have tweeted during congressional meetings. Shouldn't they be paying attention? Somebody was on a secret trip to the Middle East and tweeted. Perhaps those who don't know better than that shouldn't be on secret trips. A publicist tweeted that he would rather die than live in the place one of his biggest clients lives. Now that can't be good for business. So, I shall not tweet.

I think the Internet is great for chatting, playing games, research...but not so good for embarrassing college pictures or emotion-filled emails. Get a real photo album...that can always be burned. And pick up the phone or a pen and paper. Don't forget people.

I like a hand written note, given or gotten.

Then there's what happened today. I'm working on a article. I just sat down to fix my revisions...it's gone. And not just that article. The whole folder with all my writing is gone. Poof! I have no idea how or where...but it's not anywhere I've looked. Granted, I am no computer whiz, but seriously...folders don't just walk away. Right? Luckily I've got the hard copy right here next to me. But I'm not happy.

I don't answer my cell phone very often...I have a land line. I don't think I'm even going to answer that for now though. I need a time out. I'm even shutting the TV off.


I found it! It took a little work, but I recovered the whole folder. whew.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Nose

If there is anything I've learned in the last almost six years of parenting its that there are so many conversations you'll have that you never imagined having. Kids burst out with embarrassing personal information at inappropriate times, forcing you to blush, quiet, and recover all at the same time. Then there's the amount of time you'll spend discussing poop. Who knew? Then there's the conversations that start with, "Mama..." said in that whiny, sad, 'I don't want to get in trouble but I have to tell you this' voice. I had one of those tonight.

Jace had been in bed for almost 20 minutes when he peeked out of his door. "Mama..."

"What Jace?"

"Mama, this morning Gracie stuck a bead up my nose and it's stuck."

What? What? I was certain I had heard him wrong and made him repeat himself. I hadn't misheard...Gracie stuck a bead up his nose and it was stuck. All day. Goodness me.

I sat him on the toilet and got out tweezers, Q-tips, Neosporin, tissues and a flashlight. I didn't really know what to do and tried to buy a little time by preparing for anything. I decided to look for the pink bead first and shined the light into his little nostril. Honestly, I've never looked up a nose before. Interesting...even more so when there's a bead lodged up there!

Luckily, all it took was a good blowing of the nose to uncork his nose from his sister's deviousness. I patted him on the head, tucked him back in bed, and went to Gracie's room. She was still awake and immediately denied having stuck anything in Jace's nose. "Jace did it, not me."

Back to Jace's room...when confronted with the truth, he admitted sticking the bead in his own nose and trying to get away with it by blaming his (for once) innocent sister. Although I wanted to scream I didn't...just got myself some chai and sat back to tell you all about it.

Now I find myself shaking my head...what was he thinking? Why was he lying? What am I going to do for the next 13 years? Maybe I'll go back to talking about poop.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

A Real Mommy Workout

There are so many workout plans out there. I never thought there would be need for another, but today I thought of one. I'm not motivated enough to come up with it, if anyone wants to take my idea and run with it...feel free. All you need to do is figure out the calories we burn doing the things we already do.

There's the basic housekeeping chores: laundry, dishes, vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, dusting, etc. Let's break down laundry a little further. First you have to sort the clothes, then put a load it in the washing machine. Is there a caloric difference in filling a top loading versus front loading washer? Then you pull the damp clothes out of the washer and toss them into the dryer, after which they'll need folding. Are more calories burned if the clothes are pulled one at a time from the dryer and folded right there or if they're pulled in bulk, placed in a basket, taken somewhere else and folded? Lastly, the laundry has to be put away. I would love the caloric breakdown of that. Maybe I could learn to love my laundry workout.

Aside from chores we, as moms, are also very active in oral aerobics. Just today I've scolded, yelled, pleaded, hollered, repeated myself repeatedly, reprimanded, shouted, nagged, begged, and scolded again. That should count for something!

So let's go! One, two, clean your room! Five, six, don't hit your sister! Nine, ten...

Please tell me I'm burning enough calories for a glass of wine...please.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

All About Gracie

Gracie is growing into quite the little girl. She'll be four in a few months. She loves dresses, long hair, and jewelry. She's met a bagger at our grocery store who also likes dresses and who has long hair. She gives her the biggest hugs every time we shop and talks about her to anyone who'll listen. Her love of dresses and other things 'girly' hasn't taken the edge off her tomboy ways, though. She still drives her jeep around the yard, plays in the sandbox and loves big brother's hot wheels. She's going to be quite the young lady soon.

Gracie is developing a rather smart-arse sense of humor and enjoys picking on both her brothers with it. Last night, though, she found a new game to play with me. I was sitting at the table with a tank top on. I was cutting up food for Tyler when my arm started to move. She was swinging my upper arms back and forth, jiggling that place where my triceps aren't! She laughed and laughed. I felt slightly like crying, but just laughed along with her. It's reality, might as well enjoy it!

She's pretty much potty trained (thank goodness) and none too soon. I considered shipping her off until she figured it out...I hope Tyler's not quite the challenge Gracie was in this department. She likes playing mom and recently asked me, "Did your son chew on my daughter?" She had picked up her doll and found her feet were a little wet. Indeed my son had chewed on her daughter. That's pretty much what he does!

Gracie's also becoming very creative and curious. She makes up the most intriguing questions and then ponders all the possibilities that abound. "I wonder what would happen if we had two tongues. We could lick two foods and eat more!" She can't wait for pre-k next year. I hope they're ready for her!

I love this little girl. I can't wait to see how her personality and interests grow and change...she's a true delight, who just informed me that it's time to go play Candy Land. Hopefully it'll be more fun than letting my arm fat flap in the wind!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Did you ever put up with someone who was really awkward, perhaps socially inept? I can remember several instances where I've rolled my eyes at inappropriate comments. And I'm tolerant. I give a lot of leeway and a few too many second chances. Yet, even I get annoyed with people and occasionally get a little snappy too.

Maybe someone should have told me that my kids would be like these annoying pests I've put up with over the years. Maybe I could have been better prepared for the fact that, sometimes, hearing "Mama" for the hundredth time would make me feel like driving my car into a guard rail. Would I be more patient if I'd felt prepared for the 'pitter patter of little feet' to turn into the 'thunder of a migrating pack of wildebeasts'?

Probably not. It probably wouldn't have made a difference. After all, I know it now, and I'm still annoyed and want them all to go to bed and wake up two days from now...when I've had a chance to miss them, to remember why I love them, and to enjoy their energy again.

Just in case it does make a difference to be forewarned, though:
Caution: Your Children Will Annoy You!

Monday, March 16, 2009


Jace likes to throw things he's learned in school into any old conversation. If it doesn't relate to what we're talking about, he'll find a way to work it in anyhow.

Yesterday, Gracie said, out of the blue, "Our daddy's the best daddy ever." I thought it was cute and adorable for at least a second before Jace popped in with his two cents.

"There are some eskimo dad's that are better."

What? I had to try not to laugh. Scott told Jace he could go live with them, then! He said ok and went on to tell us why eskimo dads are better than his own!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

It Might Make You Feel Better

Lately I've been reminded frequently of a record (yes, a record) we had growing up that I listened to almost daily. It was by Marlo Thomas and taught all sorts of wonderful life lessons. One of my favorite songs was "It's All Right To Cry." I'm sure this doesn't surprise any of you that know me...crying is something I rather enjoy. Sometimes I'll catch the end of Last of the Mohicans on TV just so I can shed a tear. Scott thinks I'm a little weird, and maybe he's right, but it feels good to cleanse my emotions.

I don't know why crying gets such a bad wrap. I mean, I don't promote weeping for no reason, but if you feel something...feel it. I was watching the finale of The Bachelor (I know, shame on me) and both of the final two girls were crying to the beau they were vying for, and apologized for it. "I'm so sorry...I don't know why I'm crying." Seriously? You're crying because the whole situation (of getting to know someone, finding you really like him, and facing the idea that he might like someone else more) hurts.

I was talking to a close friend the other day, who's making some very difficult decisions right now. She started crying and apologized to me. There's no need. The song says

"It's all right to cry. Crying gets the bad out of you.
It's all right to cry. It might make you feel better."

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Final Four?

I just made some cupcakes...I know, you're jealous! When I was putting liners in the pans I was hit with a burning question: What happens to the final two liners? The package I last purchased was 50 count. My cupcake tins, and I think all cupcake tins, have 12 each. The cake mix, or for those of you more established bakers...the recipe, makes 24 servings. Why 50 little paper liners? I'd already made one batch of cupcakes or muffins, so, in just a moment I would be left with two lonely liners.

Should I throw them out? Keep them? Hope I remember them with the next batch? Worry that I won't find them until I clean my cupboards out...someday?

Wait a minute...there's nothing to worry about. I ended up with four extra liners. Cool beans! A little extra for my money. And four pretty pastel papers are definitely worth saving until my next tasty treat. Just think, after my next two batches I'll be left with six liners! It gets better and better. Perhaps by the time I use the exact number of liners someone will have started packaging them in multiples of twelve.

Plan C

I'm a planner. My husband is a planner. I don't know if this is a good thing or not. But we're planners. Our kids will likely rebel and drive us crazy with their spontaneity. I can only imagine their teenage years...hair brained ideas, impromptu gatherings, hearing "sorry about the short notice, mom" over and over again. Oy vey! Luckily, I have a few years before I have teens...but I think they're breaking me in slowly. It seems that every time I have the day set out before us...they change my plans in the way that only kids can.

There have been exploding diapers when I'm ready to walk out the door. Two day trips have turned into three day trips all because somebody couldn't keep down breakfast...all day long. And just yesterday, while sitting at the bus stop in a nicely air-conditioned car, Gracie announces, "Mama, I have to pee!"

If you've ever potty-trained you know that while training, and in those uncertain months following, when the statement is made the clock is ticking to find a potty, or at least a tree for cover. There was no overgrowth around and if we went back to the house, only a minute away, we'd surely miss the bus. On the other hand, if we waited for the bus, we'd likely have an accident on our hands. Neither option seemed like a good one. Plan C was born. We went a little further down the bus route to a friend's house to use their bathroom.

If we made it in time, someone was home, the bus driver noticed my car in their driveway and let Jace off, then everything would turn out fine. If. Lucky for us, my off the cuff plan worked out. No accidents. All three kids safe and sound with me. Everything was fine, except now we were at a friend's house instead of at home. Of course the kids wanted to play a little, so we did and got home in time to start dinner. My plans for the afternoon and evening were out the window!

I'm OK though. I'm learning that sometimes half-baked ideas born of necessity are just as good as plans I've thought through and tweaked to my liking. It's all about re-evaluation based on new and pertinent information, like "I've got to pee!" After all, the laundry will be there tomorrow, right?

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Reality of Real Estate

We met with our realtor yesterday, in preparation for putting our house on the market. It went well. The to do list she left us only included a few things that weren't on the list we'd already started working on. One thing was confirmed, though. Something I new, but hadn't allowed myself to admit out loud yet. I really hoped somehow we could sell the house without having to keep it clean. Unfortunately that's not the case.

Three kids or not, there's some work to be done. This morning I packed up four plastic bins of children's toys, photo albums, and extra blankets, and there's still more to store away in the attic. And I've started a check list to complete when I get that call saying someone will be here in an hour to see our listing. I'm so excited for that call, hopefully a few times over! The thing I'm really not excited about is checking off the items on my check list when I leave to go grocery shopping, meet friends, or have dinner out. Any place I go, aside from the bus stop, will be too far away to get back home and tidy up if someone is ready to view our property. That's going to get old, quickly.

Another not so great thing is that properties are taking plenty of time to sell. So, we're gearing up for the possibility that I might be washing toilets daily, sweeping floors hourly, and constantly throwing toys back into their bins for months upon months...upon months.

Wish us luck!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

One Handed

I've discovered, since becoming a mother, that there are a few things I used to do with two hands that I've had to figure out with just one. Probably my least favorite task is going to the bathroom. It's really not easy to pull your pants down, or up, with one hand, especially with a child in the other. It's also a bit tricky to make a meal, unload the washing machine, load the dishwasher and push a grocery cart. I vow never to forget my baby wrap again.

A few chores weren't as hard to adapt. Vaccuuming with one hand is surpringly ok. Blowing my nose...doable. Putting socks on isn't as hard as I might have thought. In fact, I've even become quite capable at typing with just five fingers.

This is evidence of that.