Saturday, March 31, 2007

Ah yes.... spring break

This is the official start of the kids' spring break.

Ten glorious days at home.

Here's how it will go:

Day one: the older two will lie around for about 20 minutes, watching SpongeBob, get bored, and start asking when we are going to do something.

And then it will all go downhill from there. Quickly. Like a boulder off of Pike's Peak. And the noise will be about the same.

If I had been SMART, I would have taken some vacation time. But I like to horde my time until the end of the year when I can tick my manager off when I say things like "oh yeah... I have 15 days to use" in November.

And of course, this will be EVERYone's spring break in the area. So it isn't like we can sneak into someplace without having 10,000 other kids there, too. And one of the Queen's good friends (no, not chicken girl) has taken off and gone to Hilton Head for her vacation. I can always count on her mom literally taking the Queen for a whole day and even overnight because the girls have a blast together.

So maybe we will plan a little trip and stay somewhere.

And then again, maybe not. Who knows.

See how prepared I am?

Oh well. At least I KNOW where my kids will be for the next few spring breaks. I am NOT looking forward to the college trips. Oy vey. God grant me the strength. Do you think I can convince my kids that I am homeschooling them through college?

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Friday, March 30, 2007

The grass isn't always greener

I have to discuss an interview I went on yesterday.

I work from home. I have worked from home for the same company since July 1999. I am coming up on year nine with this company, and I have ridden through many a storm with them (reorgs, managers leaving and going other places, other managers being promoted to higher positions, moving to another team in order to ensure longevity, etc., etc.).

I have been known to complain about this job. I have been known to gritch about having to work on the weekend. I have been known to utter a word or two about quota requirements.

What I haven't done is fully take stock in what I DO have in this position.

Until yesterday.

This is where I get a little religious ... so bear with me.

We were told last year that there was a possibility that our jobs were going to be outsourced to overseas vendors. They were actually looking at overseas attorneys to see if they could do the work that we do (we read, summarize, and pull out points of law from cases (mine are federal) ... really it is pretty rote now, but it still is legal work). It was really questionable whether they would be able to pull it off.

And they couldn't. We were just informed recently that it is no longer a go, but that didn't mean that they wouldn't keep looking for other overseas vendors. Fine. That is the name of the game in business. Always looking at the bottom line, and I can fully appreciate that.

I applied for a position at a company here in our hometown. They are growing exponentially. I won't say too much about what they do because I don't want to be unfair to the company.

I applied last year when the project was announced. Or somewhere close to the announcement because I had a feeling something was going on. And I waited. A LONG time. I was getting more and more nervous as time progressed that I was never going to be offered the opportunity to show this company my wonderful qualities.

Then I received a phone interview at the end of September. And I was told that I was eligible for the next step.

And I waited. A long time.

I finally received word last week that I was offered a face to face interview. This was about two weeks after we had received the final word on the outsourcing project.

I was conflicted. I really was. I didn't really talk about the interview much with anyone but Ace and my sister and mother. I didn't even tell my friends until this week that I was interviewing. I was conflicted because I no longer "needed" the job. The impetus was no longer there.

But, I had applied, I said I would interview, so I was going to carry through with my commitment, because my parents taught me that when you start something, you finish it. No ifs, ands, or buts about it.

So I prayed a lot about it, and I came to the realization that God was placing me in this position for one of two reasons: (1) to open a new door for me or (2) to show me that what I have is really where I need to be.

And yesterday afternoon, it was apparent that it was # 2.

The company has no structure. It is flat. There are a LOT of younger people walking around, ones who I assume are mostly part-time. I had no idea whether I was interviewing for part or full time, and when they asked me what I preferred, I told them that I needed full time because I needed benefits and I needed income stability.

And then they asked me later if I would "accept" part time. Well, what did I just say to you? Are you listening to me?

The employees were walking around in flip flops, jeans, and sweatshirts. And they think that is cool.

Yeah. I guess that is cool. But I walk around my place of work in my pajamas and not showered. I have my coffee brought to me on a daily basis. I can crawl into my bed after turning off my computer in 3 seconds. I don't have to get in a car to go anywhere. I can go to my daughter's Easter egg hunt at her preschool. I can fix lunch for my son and see him off on his bus. I can see my kids get off their bus every day. If someone is sick, I can stay home and still work.

See where I am going with this.

Lesson learned, God. Thanks for letting me figure this one out.

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Thursday, March 29, 2007

Get your own dam* blog!

Do you know what my husband just said to me?

Hey ... I see that you phoned in your Thursday 13 today.


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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

TT # 33

Yes. It is true. I am of the legal profession. Although I don't talk about it much, I must come forth and admit it all here...

One of the things we loved to do in law school was listen to bad lawyer jokes ... you know the ones ... why don't sharks eat lawyers? professional courtesy. But the best ones were hearing about the awful lawsuits that were brought, or the questions that have been asked that should never have even been put on ANY record.

In honor of my profession, I bring you

Thirteen Funny Things In Which the Lawyers Looked Like Idiots!

1. Now doctor, isn't it true that when a person dies in his sleep, in most cases he just passes quietly away and doesn't know anything about it until the next morning?

2. Q: What happened then?
A: He told me, he says, "I have to kill you because you can identify me."
Q: Did he kill you?

3. Was it you or your brother that was killed in the war?

4. The youngest son, the 20-year-old, how old is he?

5. Q: She had three children, right?
A: Yes.
Q: How many were boys?
A: None.
Q: Were there any girls?

6. Were you alone or by yourself?

7.Q: I show you Exhibit 3 and ask you if you recognize that picture?
A: That's me.
Q: Were you present when that picture was taken?

8. Q: You say that the stairs went down to the basement?
A: Yes.
Q: And these stairs, did they go up also?

9. Q: Do you know how far pregnant you are now?
A: I'll be three months on March 12th.
Q: Apparently then, the date of conception was around January 12th?
A: Yes.
Q: What were you doing at that time?

10. Do you have any children or anything of that kind?

11. Was that the same nose you broke as a child?

12. Q: Mrs. Jones, do you believe you are emotionally stable?
A: I used to be.
Q: How many times have you committed suicide?

13.You don't know what it was, and you didn't know what it looked like, but can you describe it?

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!


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Another Wordless Wednesday

Be sure you don't watch this with kids hanging over your shoulder ... unless it is an infant, of course.

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Wordless Wednesday


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Monday, March 26, 2007

Cisco the horse

Meet the new obsession... amigurami crocheted animals... the first in a series of way many more to come...

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One of the things you learn when you have sung as much as I have (all throughout my high school and college careers, performing things like the Messiah and going out on "tour" on a few occasions) is that you never. ever. wear. perfume.


It has an affect on people who can't handle fragrances where it will make them physically ill. And you would never want to be the cause of someone passing out or, worse yet, throwing up on stage.

I stopped wearing perfume when I was pregnant with the Queen. I could not handle the smell. It made my ILL. I would throw up at the drop of a hat with her pregnancy, and that just made matters MUCH worse. So I stopped wearing it then and never picked it back up. Does it make me ill now? Nope. Just don't wear it myself.

However, there is one person in our church choir who it does bother.

We receive these little perfume PSAs every once in a while. Please, don't wear perfume or cologne on stage. Please refrain from wearing any fragrance of ANY kind. Blah blah blah.

Ok. I get it. I have gotten it. Since high school, people.

About a month or so ago, we get an email from our choir director ... you know, the one that doesn't like me for oh so many reasons ... reminding us not to wear perfume or cologne because someone "almost had to come down off the platform on Sunday" because of an allergic reaction to someone's perfume.

Hmmm... ok. Wasn't me, and I didn't hear any complaints out of our "side" (the altos and tenors). So I think that we are in the clear.

Well, apparently not. The following week, we get another email, telling us to PLEASE not wear perfume or cologne because this same person had ANOTHER reaction this week.

Well ok ... someone please define "reaction" to me. We never really heard.

Certainly there was some sort of criminal intent going on here. Certainly we could go to the prosecutor's office and seek justice! There was a cologne conspiracy going on, and if we played our cards right, we could probably bring RICO charges as well.

As if the email wasn't enough, we had to read it in our little choir update sheet that following week.

The exact wording was "PLEASE remember not to wear any cologne or perfume on stage because we almost lost one of our own last weekend."

Well there you go. That is it. Analphylactic shock for certain! I mean, when you say lost to me, I take it in the strictest sense of the term.

Here's where we get to the part where I prove myself to be the biggest pain in my choir director's ass: I raised my hand and asked:

Now, when you say lost, do you mean like "lost" lost, as in analphylactic shock lost, or "almost" coming down off the platform again?

Well he didn't mean "die" lost ... no. That wasn't what he meant.

So I told him to not use colloquial terms. This elicted a guffaw from the ONE person in choir who "gets" my humor, and we took it to the obnoxius degree of discussing strict liability and burdens of proof.

This is why he doesn't like me.

We receive an email from him the following day, apologizing for taking this thing too far. His wife and a friend told him that enough was enough, and he was going to allow the section leaders to handle the stiuation. We never heard from ours, which further proved to me that it wasn't our side.

Our director CALLED the soprano section leader AT WORK (she is a first grade teacher so those of you who are or were teachers know what a PITA it is to take a phone call at work) and told her she needed to handle the situation in her section. Needless to say, she was LIVID!

Do you know what it ended up being?

Not Obsession. Not Drakar. Not Old Spice. Not even Love's Baby Soft.

It was ..... DUM DUM DUM....

SHAMPOO! Worn by the person standing next to this anal retentive, completely over the top, she puts the "d" in drama soprano ... no, not the diva soprano ... the soprano who some of you know as a good friend's MIL.

Give. Me. A. BREAK!

So from now on, if you are ever attending my church and smell something ... that would be the body odor of the choir members because apparently we can't even SHOWER or someone is going to go off the deep end.

Don't get me wrong ... I KNOW that people have reactions. But really ... for this woman, this "reaction" could be watering eyes. Or a runny nose. Coming from anyone else, I would take the claims as substantial. Coming from her, not so much.

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Sunday, March 25, 2007

Holy FRAK!

Ok... first off: 2008!!!! 2008?!?!?!?!?!?!?! Give me a BREAK! 2008. Whatever.

Second: HOW could you throw ALL of that at us, oh writers of Battlestar Galactica?

The music in the ship. The four who were affected by it. Their coming together and realizing what they "potentially" are. And then dispersing to their "posts" on the ship to lend hands. Priceless. Awesome work.

And THEN in comes Starbuck. I KNEW it was her. Now I just have to know if it is an apparition of Lee's, that she is coming to him, or if she is really back. I don't think she is back. I think she is just going to show up every now and then and lead them to Earth.

And THEN ... Ace informed me that season four is the LAST season. WHAT? I seriously LIVE for this show!!!!! How am I going to live without it? I don't think I am going to like the replacement, Caprica. Because I just am not.... and there are SO many questions left unanswered. I don't see how one more season is going to answer it all.

Oh Battlestar Galactica... how do I love thee?

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Friday, March 23, 2007

So in love

I am so madly, completely in love with this little man.

This little man, who can be exasperating sometimes to the point of complete and utter exhaustion, is a complete joy to be around.

He has an insatiable appetite for learning new things. He has been sitting back here on my bed for the past 30 minutes, either drawing or writing. He can occupy himself for hours on end.

He puts himself to a task, and he doesn't come off of it until he is 1000 percent bored, or he has completed what he wanted to complete.

The sheer enthusiasm of this child is astounding to me. I wish that I had 10 percent of it.

All things are new to him. He could be bored in school, but he isn't. He views each and every task as an adventure. He never once complains that he is bored (unless he is doing something he doesn't want to do, which is rare). He never once asks me for things to do.

Altough it is a challenge to pick up all of the papers he leaves around this house, those papers are a precious reminder of his gusto for learning.

I am so in love with this little man with whom God so graciously blessed me.

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Friday's Feast # 7


Who is your favorite news anchor/reporter? Why?

I don't watch the news. Seriously. If I had to choose one, it is going to have to be Peter Jennings. I just liked him, and sad that the world is without him.


Name 3 foods that are currently in your freezer.

A Smart Ones meal, frozen chopped sirloin (2 packages), and coffee (is that a food? well it is now).


If you were to have the opportunity to name a new town or city, what would you call it?

"The town with no name where all the siblings get along, there are no bills or mortgages, and Meredith owns a knitting store next to Robin's scrapbook store" How is that for originality?

Main Course

What will most likely be the next book you read?

I've decided to break away from the Stephanie Plum series and read Memoirs of a Geisha.


What's the first thing you notice about the opposite gender?

Their height. I love me a tall man (don't ask how tall Ace is ... let's just say that two of my female friends are taller than him).

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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

TT # 32

Just today, Ace and I were talking about how the Monkey has totally gotten into a LOT of stuff ... and that she never STOPS! No matter how many times we tell her to stop doing something, she just keeps on a truckin' and we know where she gets it ... her big sis.

I thought that a Thursday Thirteen about the three kids would be a fun thing to do ... so here are

Thirteen Things about My Three Yahoos

1. The Monkey doesn't sleep well at night. She never has. She will cry out in the middle of the night for the most assinine reasons ... she needs some water, she needs a bandaid, her knee is hurting her, she's tired ... you name it, she has an excuse for it.

2. When the Door Man was a baby, he didn't sleep well, either. In fact, there was a point in time when I didn't think he would EVER sleep through the night. Until I finally clued in that maybe he was just hungry, and that was it. I felt like such a rotten mother after that.

3. Queen Bee really surprised me this year with basketball. I think she will make a really good little player if she gets the basics down ... like not standing behind your defender when you are on offense with your hand raised saying "pass the ball to me!!!"

4. The Monkey weighed 4 pounds 13 ounces when she was born. She was a PEANUT, but she had the wail of an airhorn. The nurses commented in the NICU that she was the loudest baby they had heard in a long time.

5. The Door Man has announced that he wants to work at two local ice cream establishments, as well as be a construction worker and work with his Dad at Ace.

6. When I was pregnant with the Queen, I grabbed her foot and told Ace that she was going to have very large feet. He didn't believe that the length I was showing him with my fingers really represented the size of her foot. He was wrong; I was right. She had huge feet, and she still does. She wears a size 3 1/2 Youth, 5 1/2 women. But it is long and skinny.

7. I remember the DAY that Queen slept all the way through the night.... January 1, 1999. Ace and I woke up, realized that she hadn't cried during the night, and said "Happy New Year to US!" She was (and still is) a beautiful sleeper.

8. The Man is the sweetest, most caring little boy. He will tell his sisters that they are pretty, and that they are the best sisters in the world. Such a little man....

9. Instead of crawling a lot, the Monkey scooted around on her back a lot. I remember being at Jacque's for Bible study, and we all watched as the Monkey scooted all over her living room in record time.

10. Queen has seen just about every single bathroom in every single restaurant we have been to ... and that is a LOT of restaurants.

11. The Door Man was born with cataracts. I have mentioned this on the blog a few times. But I don't think I mention enough how much this little man amazes me on a daily basis. I know the struggles he has ahead of him, and he just meets everything with gusto and a passion for learning ... it is amazing

12. Did I ever mention that the Monkey loves lip gloss?

13. These kids are changing on a daily basis and I feel like I blink and someone has grown an inch or two. The other day, the Man's old preschool teacher said that he is going to be taller than me soon ... and he is. He is up to my chest already. The Monkey will always be a petite little thing, but she packs a mighty punch (sorry that she made Abby cry tonight, Robin... I felt so bad for Abby!) and the Queen will always be the over-achiever. So many things to love about these three people I brought into this world... and so many things to look for as they grow up.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Semi-Wordless Wednesday

All right ... so Ace says this morning, as he hears me tapping away at the keyboard "that sure is a pretty lengthy Wordless Wednesday."

So ... to follow the blog tradition that i have set forth for the past ... oh ... two weeks .. here is my very verbose non-wordless Wednesday.

Hee Hee ... do you think it looks real? Don't tell me it doesn't, or I'll check right back into rehab!

And in a few more months, she might look like this:

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Sweepstakes, Part Deux and a Baby

For some reason, Queen Bee thinks she is "entitled" to win just about any prize that is given away.

Last night, we had the crazy Upward awards night ceremony. It is the night when the kids all get together in one large area and screech their ever-loving heads off, and get away with it. It is the night when they give away some pretty good prizes (although, last year's program was MUCH better than this year's, I thought).

They gave away 4 day passes (read: sorry ... no staying overnight) to Kalahari, a waterpark/hotel in Sandusky, OH. They also had quite a few bowling passes, which I would have loved, CD players, and then the Nintendo DS.

Queen has a Gameboy. Loves it. But apparently she WANTED this DS. So much so that when she was picked up by her father and walked back to me, she was .... CRYING!

I have NO patience for crying for NO reason at all. I have NO patience for a child who should know better than to stand in the middle of a large room full of her peers and CRY over something she didn't even have in the first place. So on the way home, that 8 1/2 year old child got an earful from me .... about how there were people in this town who at that very moment were checking into the City Mission because they have no place else to go. That there were people in this town who were at the hospital, getting ready to say goodbye to a loved one. That there were people in this town who were struggling financially to make ends meet, to get food om the table.

NO patience for this at ALL! When I told my mother of her behavior, her inital reaction was "oh ... poor thing. She was crying (not her words)" which then switched to "that child is too old for that! (her words)"

On a lighter note, my niece came over with her son yesterday afternoon and hung out for an hour and a half. I got my baby fix in, got him to smile at me a few times, put him to sleep, burped him ... all that good baby stuff. And then I could send him home. It was a wonderful feeling.

Choir tonight ... oh the joy of spending an hour with three to six year olds, trying to get them ready for a production on tax day in church.

And then dreaded adult choir. And therein lies another story ... for another post.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

And here's that story about the spaceship

So here's how it goes.

A few years ago, Ace and I were enjoying a bottle of Breitenbach First Crush. That stuff goes down like candy. And I think I had more than Ace from that bottle.

I was watching Independence Day. That is one of those movies that I can't pass up when I see that it is on. Twister, Independence Day, Desperately Seeking Susan, The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, Witness... the list goes on.

So for those of you who haven't seen Independence Day, it is about aliens who come to Earth to harvest it for their use, and of course, the human race is the first thing that needs to be annihilated. I love Jeff Goldblum ... so I watch it.

Ace had gone outside to pick things up out of the yard because it was a nice summer night, and they had been playing outside. About 10 minutes later, he comes inside and says "hey ... get out here. I need to show you something."

Ok. Since I was a little kid, I have always been afraid of those little aliens ... the ones with the big eyes, small bodies. There was that movie ... Communion. Couldn't STAND it, even though it did have Christopher Walken in it (another of my faves). It creeped me the he** out.

So I have these dreams sometimes ... that I look up in the sky and sure enough, there are these lights that dash around fast, and I know what they are and I get scared. I still have them to this day. Now that I am talking about it, I BET you that I have one of those dreams tonight.

When I go outside, I say "you better not tell me to look up into the sky when I get out here" and he said "well then, you better not come out." FREAKED ME OUT!!!

I get out to the backyard, and he points to this light on the horizon and says "I've been watching this light for the last 10 minutes, and it seems to be moving. Not a lot, but moving."

Well that was it. I just stood there and was mesmerized. I had started to make my plans of building a bomb shelter and stocking it up with non-perishables, wondering how long we would be able to survive.

Then I ordered Ace into the car to "chase it."

There was a point in time in our marriage where he would drop EVERYthing and do something for me. Not so much now. And I think it was this event that made him start thinking that he needed to use his brain before he ran off and did every bidding that I uttered.

So he takes off in his little car, and "chases" this light. I finally lost sight of it, and he returned home about 20 minutes later (about 10 minutes into that 20 minutes, I had these visions of him sitting at a train crossing, his car losing power, train lights going on and off and then that beam of light...).

That night I am most positive that my dreams were filled with aliens and spaceships flitting around the sky.

The next evening, the man who brought all of this terror about decided that it was best to Google the situation (of course, I had already poured over all the websites to see if anyone had reported an alien spacecraft in this area ... nobody had) and lo and behold ...

It was Venus.

Or so he says.

Venus is code name for "shut the he** up wife, and next time you think someone should chase a light, YOU do it. Now pass that bottle of wine, woman."

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Monday, March 19, 2007

It certainly wasn't us

Last night, we were glued to HGTV to see if we were going to be the lucky saps who received the knock on the door to let us know that we were the new owners of the Dream Home in Winter Park, Colorado.

That knock never came. But it did for some lucky fella in Johnson City, Tennessee whose son had taken him out to dinner and they had about 3-4 tables FULL of this guys friends and family.

Hint # 1: if a whole bunch of uninvited people show up for dinner, you are probably going to have to cash that $ 250,000 check from right there, buddy to pay for their dinners.

Queen Bee wanted to stay up to see if it was us. I told her she would know if it was because she would hear the loud thud of her mother hitting the floor as she fainted.

But we didn't have to worry about that because my favorite motto is: I can't even win a trip to the bathroom.

Sure, I have won radio contests, but those are based on luck only. I have won the occasional door prize (last week, I was treated to a 15 minute massage at a local trade show). But as for lady luck showing up on a regular basis, well .. she just doesn't visit this house.

There was that time when Ace won a Nintendo 64 (when those were just out ... you know .. back in the 90s). But he stuffed the box at the Target store where they were giving it out, so really .... nobody else had a chance in he** to win that system. I remember not being the least bit surprised to come home and listen to the message on the machine from Target, telling Ace that he was the lucky winner.

There were other unlucky people over the weekend, too ... like the 40,999,999 of us who didn't win that house. The University of Kentucky men's basketball team. Wisconsin. The boys and girls teams from our local high school.

Oh well... I'm not a skier. I hate snow. And when they started showing all of the "fun" things to do in Winter Park, I secretly wished that the next Dream Home would be in Hawaii ... then I'm ALL over that one!


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Friday, March 16, 2007

The Great Chicken Nugget Debacle

Last week, Queen Bee was famished at dinner. Ace said she ate 1 1/2 grilled cheese sandwiches, 1/2 a peanut butter sandwich, 2 handfuls of chips, and some milk. She threw up at 8:30 that night because (1) she was getting over a virus and (2) she ate a lot.

Thinking that it was strange that she was that hungry, I asked her what she had for lunch that day. This is what I found out:

Queen's "best friend" ... let's call her Carrie ... was eating the Queen's chicken nuggets. Without the Queen's permission. As in "I don't want these burned nuggets ... you are trading with me." The Queen doesn't want to eat the rejects from Carrie's tray, so she eats two.

This isn't the first time this has happened, either. I guess Carrie had a bad habit of taking food from the Queen's tray when the Queen got up to get something or throw something away.

I got pissed. I popped an email off to the school, and then thought I should probably have talked to the mom about it before I did that. But it was already too late. The teacher called me after school that day, telling me that the principal had pulled Carrie into the principal's office and asked her about it. Of course, Carrie outright denied it.

The following day during gym, Queen said that Carrie approached her and said "why did you have to go and tell your mom?" and denounced the Queen as her best friend. However, 20 minutes later, Queen said that Carrie was asking her back.

The teacher asked for names of anyone who could corroborate the Queen's accountings of the situation. She rattled off two names for me, so I sent the names to the teacher. I didn't hear anything else about it until this evening.

The teacher approached me and said they took care of the situation by sending a letter home with Carrie to her parents, telling them that Carrie was no longer allowed to buy the chicken nugget lunch at school, and that she had to pack her lunch because apparently, this problem was not just with Queen. It was also with the girls who had corroborated the story.

I suppose if the shoe were on the other foot, I would have liked to have taken care of it myself, but I know what would have happened: Carrie would have denied it like she initially did with the principal, and then that would be the end of it. There would have been no follow-up or follow-through.

Yes. This is "just" a school lunch. But it is MY kid's school lunch and is she was doing that to someone, you better sweet believe I would read the riot act to her many times. And the time that my kid comes home and is famished because she only had two out of five nuggets, then the gloves are off and it is an all out fight. I owe a duty to my kid and not to the feelings of a parent.

So there. And now the Queen has a new best friend ... which is just fine with me. I don't play well with kids who decide who is going to be your best friend on a daily basis.

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Friday's Feast # 6


Name two things that made you smile this week.

The 70 and sunny weather we had on Tuesday and realizing that the Door Man is just growing up so quickly, literally ... he is up to my chest now and I have always wanted to have a tall son.


Fill in the blank: Don't you hate it when ________?

Don't you hate it when you run out of coffee and don't realize it until you reach for it in the morning?


When you can't go to sleep, what is your personal remedy to help yourself drift into Lullabyland?

I haven't found one yet ...

Main Course

What is something about which you've always wondered but have not yet found a good answer?

Why I went to law school if I hate conflict.


What is your favorite pasta dish?

It is commercial, but I LOVE Olive Garden's Portabello Mushroom Ravioli. Yum.

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Oh yeah... Weight Watchers

Ok ... so my TT looks like I drink a lot. Maybe that is where I got the extra weight? Ha!

Seriously ... pounds lost to date .... 9.2.

Small steps, Ellie. Small steps. (name that movie ... hint: it is a scifi movie).


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Wednesday, March 14, 2007

TT # 31

In honor of my Scotch/Irish heritage, I thought it would be appropriate to discuss some spirits that I have partaken .... you know ... because I'm Scotch/Irish. What better reason to talk about alcohol, I ask you?

Thirteen Spirits In Which I Have Imbibed

1. Fosters. On tap. In the barrel. You name it, I've had it. I LOVE the stuff, and it just totally reminds me of sitting in a pub in England.

2. Some dark draught at some pub in London. That is about as non-descript as I possibly can get. I inherited my father's love (who is of English heritage, mind you ... so I am an oppressor and the oppressed at the same time ... what a combo ... no wonder I need therapy) for dark beer that you can chew. Had it; loved it.

3. Lemonade and beer. Our German exchange student's mother, Helga, tried to talk me into this drink. I had it; I HATED it. It was just .... bleah.

4. Lots and lots of German beer when I visited our German exchange student, Gernot. He was raised on the stuff. I loved the ceramic tops on the bottles. I remember a story about how his mother would only send him off on his bike if she knew he would be drinking too much. Sure enough, there were many stories of him coming home drunk and passing out somewhere on his bike. Helga is a SMART woman.

5. Tequila. Bleck. Can't stand the stuff. Can't stand the smell. Can't stand the taste. But I like margaritas. Go fig.

6. Jack Daniels. Yet another in the "bleck" category.

7. Ok .. I have to admit this one ... this was all in the same night: one shot of Jagermeister, one shot of tequila, one shot of Jim Beam, and one shot of rum. It was after my oral arguments in my first year of law school. All of this was then chased with the bottomless pit of bottled beer. Some guy kept pouring beer into my bottle and I kept drinking. And drinking. And drinking. And passed out on the table. And then threw up outside.

8. Long Island Iced Tea. And not just ANY LIIT. It was a 24 ounce drink from this bar off of Cedar Point. They were horrid things, but man .... they were cheap.

9. Manhattan. YUM!

10. Sloe Gin Fizz. YUM-O!

11. Never met a margarita I didn't like. Jose makes an excellent already made, in the bottle margarita. YUMMY!

12. Breitenbach Black Raspberry Wine. This is HEAVEN in a bottle, people. Heaven. Did I ever tell you about the time when I thought I saw a UFO? Ok. That is for another time.

13. Breitenbach First Crush. Another yummy wine. These are wines that are kind of local to the area. They are SOOOOO good.

I promise I am not a lush. Really, I used to drink a lot in college and at Cedar Point. But I really don't do that much anymore. It is the occasional margarita here and there, and wine at home. Nothing like my wild days of long ago.... but the Irish part of me always needs something.

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!


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Wordless Wednesday

How can you say no when these eyes are looking at you?


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Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Well.... hmmm.... let's see

Yeah. Nothing exciting to talk about today. Seriously. My life is one big boring round of routines right now that I bore even myself thinking about it.

Had an awesome time last Thursday getting out of the house and scrappin' with a few of the sistahs. Robin and Julie... what a great time. Kendra, sorry I couldn't get back over there ... but the Queen expected me to pick her up at Upward practice. Go fig.

One last game for Upward this weekend, and then the big night ... Let's Get Ready to Rumble....

Speaking of rumbling, check this gem out from our local docket this morning:

A resident reported that a neighbor at an apartment at 2800 S. Main St. was having a loud party at about 11:30 p.m. Friday. But when a deputy arrived, he found a tenant at the residence was only shampooing his carpets.

That was SOME party!!!

Ok so seriously ... I think this is the lamest post from me in a long time. I don't have anything witty to contribute, no words of advice, no anecdotes to be given.

Let's just chalk this one up to life.

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Monday, March 12, 2007

Been Tagged ... What Meredith Needs

Ok... now you know my name. It is Meredith. As if some of you hadn't figured that out already...

So Robin tagged me on the "Meredith needs" Google search fun. You KNOW there is going to be some McDreamy/Meredith comment in here, don't you? You are right... keep reading.

1. Meredith needs to mind her own business. Oh my gosh. This couldn't be MORE true.

2. Meredith needs written and oral communication skills, too. I don't need no help with them thar words, dog.

3. I think that Mcdreamy and Meredith needs to get back together There you go. I told you there would be at least ONE in here.

4. And in the same post ... i think Meredith needs to stop whinning though..... says my husband.

5. Ah yes ... Meredith needs to be given medication throughout the day and preferably in the form of a Corona with lime.

6. Meredith needs to be turned twice after she is put in bed at 9pm Just twice?

7. Meredith needs to be supervised in the classroom because she is constantly running with scissors.

8. Meredith needs a new facility specifically designed for continuing education, including a teaching auditorium, seminar rooms, multi-media equipped and don't we all?

9. Meredith needs a day off Amen, Google. Amen.

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Who's your daddy?

Yesterday morning, it was the usual melee of leaving church. My kids were all over the place as usual, I didn't have the magic snap going that early in the morning, so I had to yell at my kids to stop running while the second service was just starting. The only thing that saved me was the fact that they were playing a loud video in church right at that moment.

And the poor Monkey got all tangled up in the melee. The poor thing is so small, and she only can see up to someone's leg. She has to look all the way back to see if she is even talking to the right person.

We were getting our coats on, and she turned to Matt, Robin's husband and started to take something from his hand because she thought it was Ace. She then heard me say "that isn't Daddy, honey" and she looked up and saw that, indeed, this was a different person. So she turned to the next substitute, Robin's brother. She also discovered this person was not her father, either.

She finally hit pay dirt when she started to cry and call out "where's my Daddy?!?"

Poor little mite. In her defense, all three of them are about the same height, same build, and same hair coloring. And about the same amount of hair, too.

She was SALTY on the way home, too. Man ... you should have seen her face.

But then, if I didn't know who my Daddy was, I would be mad, too.

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Sunday, March 11, 2007

Really, who ARE laws written for?

This week at The Mom Blogs, the topic that we can discuss is an interesting one. Now, I am not getting into the whole debate of whether abortion is right or wrong or whatever. This is about a law: a law that was apparently written for one set of parents, but looks to be taken advantage of by someone it wasn't written for.

In 2004, a mother approached a Planned Parenthood clinic to have an abortion. She wanted to end the pregnancy because of financial reasons. The abortion was botched, and it was not successful.

The mother approached another doctor to perform the abortion, but it was also unsucessful in ending the pregnancy. She was 20 weeks along.

This is where it becomes a little strange for me: she didn't realize that the second abortion was unsuccessful until she went to the ER for "pelvic pain." She found out that she was pregnant, and had her daughter in December 2004.

She has filed an action in Massachusetts state court, seeking to recover the costs she has incurred for raising her child. Apparently, in 1990, the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled that a parent could bring an action to recover the expenses that are incurred in raising a child who was a victim of some sort of med mal.

So, here's this law that this mother is trying to stretch to cover her situation.

Do I think it will proceed to trial? Yep.

Do I think it should proceed to trial? That is a resounding heck no.

This child is now 2 1/2 years old. No, the child will not know right now what the subject of the mother's lawsuit is. But the reputation of this child will proceed her as she grows up.

Why would ANY mother, regardless of whatever status they are in life, put their child through that? There are so many atrocities against children in this world, and it makes me sick. This is one of them.

A child you didn't want ... a child you sought to abort on two different occasions, once at 20 weeks ... a child who is now IN your life ... a child who is a living, breathing, loving human being who only seeks the love and affection of the mother who brought her into this world.

She could have put the child up for adoption. She could have arranged for another family member to take this child. But she didn't.

This is wrong on so many levels. No, I don't know how the child was conceived but that doesn't really matter now. The child is here, and apparently the mother is keeping the child. Why stigmatize your child as a meal ticket to getting money for something that you need to be doing in the first place, and that is raise your child.


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Friday, March 09, 2007

Friday's Feast # 5


What is your usual bedtime? Do you like that, or would you rather it be different?

It is anywhere between 10:30 and midnight to 12:30. I would love to get more sleep, but if I go to bed before 10:30, I toss and turn all night long, and it is the longest night for me.


When it comes to advice, do you give more or receive more?

HA! Give more. I can't keep my trap shut. And I need to learn to keep comments to myself because sometimes people just want to say something to say something, and I offer what I think are sage words of advice. And then I kick myself afterwards because I think "you know, they weren't asking me what I would do ... they were just wanting to tell me something."


Describe a memorable meal you've had.

It would have to be the night that Ace proposed to me. We ate at the Galt House in Louisville. Do I remember what I had? Nope. But I remember the afterwards....

Main Course

Name a work of fiction that affected the way you think about something.

Night. Even though I have read quite a few books about the Holocaust, that one has stayed with me for so long ... I whipped through it in one day, and I think about it a lot.


What is your favorite type of fruit juice?

I LOVE Ocean Spray Cranapple juice. I am sure there is like 10 percent juice in it, but I still love it. I also love apple juice, but only when I am in a hospital. Something about being in the hospital reminds me of having apple juice.

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

TT # 30

I haven't moved around a lot in my life to an exciting location. Mostly back and forth from school to work to school to work to law school, etc. So I thought it would be cool to tell you about the
Thirteen Places I Have Lived (the might be the same ones ... this is just the chronological order of it all)

1. Ok.. I am giving up a lot here ... Findlay, OH. Born and raised. Still live here. You realize, this doesn't go hand in hand with the anonymity that I want to keep, so ... don't tell my inlaws where I am, ok?

2. Rio Grande, OH. Went there for my first two years of college. Nothing too exciting. It is, however, the home of the Bob Evans Farm. When Bob was alive, he OWNED that town. I remember the age-old story of when a police officer pulled Bob over for speeding (Rio was known as the big speed trap along the way), and Bob looked at the officer and said "son, do you know who I am?" and the officer replied "no. Should I?" Bob read him the riot act. That officer learned ALL about Bob then.

3. Lexington, KY. Went from Rio Grande to Lexington to attend the University of Kentucky. Lived in a dorm with an RA. Hated EVERY minute of that, and so did my RA because one of the deals with being an RA was the fact that they didn't have to have roommates. Never liked her.

4. Sandusky, OH. Went to work at Cedar Point in between my jr. and sr. year in college. My first year there, and it was a BLAST!

5.Back to Lexington, but wisened up this time around and lived in university sponsored apartments. MUCH better deal than the last one.

6. BACK to Sandusky. Spent the summer there with Ace. What a magical summer it was....

7. BACK to Lexington for my final semester at UK.

8. Home to my parents. What a bummer this was. I remember being the surliest, nastiest person on the face of the planet. Which led me to take a job in the

9. marketing department at Cedar Point in February. Living on Lake Erie in the winter ... you KNEW I had to be desperate.

10. Ada, OH where I went to law school. Lived there for my first year. My mother insisted on it.

11. Findlay for my last two years of law school. Ace and I were married between my first and second year. There was a point in time when I moved in with my parents because Ace went down to

12. Lexington, KY. We moved down there after I graduated from law school, and had Queen Bee down there. Then we moved back to

13. Findlay, where we have been since 1999.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Wordless Wednesday

Art ala Monkey-style.

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Getting a house ready to sell

Ace and I have decided that it is high time for us to get this house ready to sell. We have been threatening to move for many years now, but were never in a position to be able to because our house needs a LOT of cosmetic work. We start off with a bang, and end with a fizzle on a lot of projects and to be blatantly honest, the kids really suck the energy out of us on most days.

Now that the kids are becoming more self-sufficient (well, ok ... the Door Man is self-sufficient ... the girls, not so much), we have decided that we need to start working on this house. The list is long and tedious.

We were looking at a few houses and had my brother (our agent) call on them. Of course, both were offer pending (have I ever mentioned the kiss of death I have on houses?) and he said "to be honest, you need to get that house ready to sell." He informed me that the market is so bad right now that owners don't want to jack around with buyers who have a house to sell. They want to know that the deal will go through, and I can totally understand that.

So that brings me to the next point: we have a next door neighbor whose dad took great interest in the fact that there was a moving van in our driveway a month ago. So much so that he called us to ask how the move is going. Do you think that is a sign? Either he wants the house, or he wants us gone. Or both. So he is call # 1. If he wants to buy this house, I say let him. If we have to rent for a while, I say so be it.

So ... does anyone have a good book suggestion on how to make your house presentable? What buyers look for? I know I have a resource in my brother, but let's face it ... he is not a home decorator. He can look at cosmetic things and say "fix this and that" but finishing touches.... not his forte.

Or just suggestions from people who have sold their houses. We sold our house in Kentucky FSBO, but that was sold in 2 weeks. Literally. The people who bought it were renting on the street directly behind us, came to our moving sale, walked through, fell in love, and came back with an offer two days later. Easiest sale ever. So we need help here. We have a house that looks like five people were living in here before the present five moved in.


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Monday, March 05, 2007

Teaching an old dog new tricks

When I first started knitting, it took me a while to get it down right. Just like with any craft, I didn't get things "down" for a few months. I had to take my knitting out to a local yarn store in order to have the owner say "baby doll.. you are wrapping your stiches around your needle all wrong." Since then, I have been knitting away for close to four years now.

Then I decided that I wanted to learn to crochet. I have a few online friends who are awesome at both. Then I have a few online friends who say they suck at one or the other, never quite understanding the concept for either knitting or crocheting. I don't know what the stats are of knitters who learned crochet and vice versa as far as who caught on better.

So I picked up a book. Actually, it was the same book series as the one I taught myself how to knit. I didn't "get it." I bought a CDROM ... I don't know where it went but I should find it now .. that helped some but I just gave up. Besides, knitting was "prettier."

Last week I decided to take the plunge and go to our local senior center to learn to crochet.

That was a bust. A major one. It was supposed to start at nine. The instructor didn't even know she was instructing until someone called to ask where she was. She showed up about 10 minutes later, and throws down a tub of dishcloth cotton yarn, says "here's a book of patterns that I use so you can decide what you want to use out of it."

Well ... ummm.... yeah. What if I don't even understand crocheting, lady?

And she kept repeating her mantra "I'm not an instructor, I'm not an instructor, I'm not an instructor" throwing in a few "well, I don't know what I did just there... I just crochet what I feel" just for good measure.

Finally one of the participants (who DID know how to crochet ... don't ask me how she got mixed up in OUR group .. you could tell she was majorly losing her patience because she wanted to make an afghan and she needed to know how to do these things, and what kind of yarn should she get, and what pattern should she use) said "well the newspaper didn't list you as the instructor. It listed Jane. Where's Jane?"

Smackdown, senior center style.

Evelyn went to find Jane, and was rather relieved that Jane was indeed in the building, and hadn't gone on the Staples and Gordon's Food buying bus. So Jane stepped over, lent a hand here and there, and I finally left, opting for a strawberry milkshake and a polish sausage from our local ice cream establishment. Because I really needed to get out of there and smell like a sausage, as opposed to coffee and ... well... senior center smell.

I bought a book at Joann's that afternoon, and taught myself. I didn't realize that I really knew more than I gave myself credit for.

So far, I have made these two little creatures. The bunny is from a pattern I purchased online from an online friend of mine, and the ducky came straight from my noggin. I think they are precious. Perfect? No. But darn good for a knitter who didn't think she could crochet.

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Is she dead?

Non-Battlestar fans need not read this post this morning ...

So, is Starbuck really dead?

I mean ... really???????

I don't know how I feel about last night's episode. Yeah ... I did start to doze off there at the end when the yeoman and Starbuck were in her mom's house. But I woke up to see the fireworks show known as Starbuck's life.

There is something about this morning star ... the little statutette she gave to Adama. There's something in that.

There are rumors going around that she's one of the Five. There is something going on with that one Cylon apologizing to the one that she recognized ... like she had done something to that one.

I will have to say that the series redeemed itself with last night's show. I had just commented to Ace before the show started that it better not be one of those fillers like they have been showing since it re-started in January.

We shall see where this one goes.

And all you sci-fi na-sayers, you REALLY are missing out. Your Gray's Anatomy and Lost .... they pale in comparison!

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Sunday, March 04, 2007

What could be SO important that ...

I have registered my blog at The Mom Blogs because, well, you know ... I guess I'm a Mom Blog. Every week, they have a topic that we can discuss if we so wish (don't worry... this isn't a PPP opportunity ... I am not being paid to enter into these discussions ... this is by my own free will ;) ). This week, it is the subject of kids and cell phones.

I cringed when I heard that Disney is putting out a cell phone product that is geared toward little kids. My initial reaction: SERIOUSLY?!?!?! You have GOT to be kidding me.

My second reaction: SERIOUSLY!?!?!?!!? You have GOT to be kidding me ... what do they need a cell phone for?

I envision my kids carrying around a phone for whatever purpose it is that we have deemed it so important to put that phone in their hands. Here's how the phone conversations would go:

Queen Bee: (as a man answers the phone of a friend she is calling) Billy doesn't have a dad ... and shoves the phone in my direction.

The Door Man: Huh? What? Yeah. Ok. Bye.

The Monkey: I like lip gloss... you know what? I have lip gloss on. It's pink. It's pretty. Do you have lip gloss?

Because really ... my kids don't have the social skills to talk on a NORMAL phone, let alone a cell phone.'s where I go all grandma on ya ... when I was growing up, we certainly didn't have cell phones. Our mode of communication was playing in an area where you could still hear your mother beckoning you home for dinner.

Do I think that kids should have cell phones? Absolutely not. Cell phones are rites of passage. They should receive them when THEY can pay for the bill.

All right ... I am editing to add this commentary: if there are DIRE circumstances that a child needs a phone, then so be it. And of course, it is every parent's choice to place that phone in their child's possession. But just to have a phone ... to have a phone ... well, that is different.

Ooops... gotta go. My cell phone is ringing.

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Saturday, March 03, 2007

Just in case you miss those Saturday morning cartoons

Enjoy this one ...

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Friday, March 02, 2007

Friday's Feast # 4

Oops ... totally forgot about this today. I guess because I didn't do TT yesterday, it threw me off. Either that or I am just losing my mind. While I believe the latter is the reason, let's go with the former.

What does the color pink make you think of?

I would love to say it reminds me of my girls, but really the first thing I think of when I think of pink is my niece, the new mom to the boy down below. When she was growing up, she was obsessed with pink. OBSESSED!!! She had this one tshirt "Think Pink" and it was her favorite shirt of all time. Think toddler meets Punky Brewster ... that was my niece.

Name something you thought you had lost, but later found.

I can't think of anything monumental .... probably my glasses... that I think I lose on a daily basis but later find somewhere stupid.

In 3 words, describe this past week.

Unexplainably very manageable.

Main Course
What are you obsessed with?

Yarn. Can't get enough of it. Oh yeah... and this blog.

What kind of perfume or cologne do you like to wear?

None because I just don't wear it anymore. When I did, I was a Beautiful woman. Now I am a "lucky if I shower" woman.


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Now don't get me wrong

Yesterday morning during our break in the presentation/meeting, I was talking with one of my tablemates, who was from Queens. I know little to nothing about New York City, but I did tell her that I have an online friend who lives in Alphabet City. Her eyes lit up and said "I used to live on the corner of Avenue A and 19th!!!!!" So we chatted on about that, passing our time away.

We were originally to have taken a 10 minute break, but one of the participants (a woman) asked if it could be lengthened to 15. My immediate thought: a smoker. So we broke for 15 minutes, instead of 10.

My immediate thought was wrong. Not a smoker. A pumper.

A breast pumper.

How did I know this? Did I recognize the large, cumbersome breast pump equipment when she got up for the break? Did I notice her discreetly carrying two small bags of breast milk back to her place at the table.

No. And no.

I recognized the sound. Whish whish whish whish whish. It brought back many mammaries of when I used to milk the girls for the Monkey because she wanted no part of the source of the milk. She just wanted the milk. In a bottle. So I kept that up for six weeks and I was exhausted. I give props to the moms out there who pump when they need to to maintain that supply so they can go home to their babe and resume feedings.

And it wasn't that I had walked into the bathroom during our break and heard these sounds. No, these sounds were heard IN THE CONFERENCE room. I happened to look over, and I noticed that she was sitting at a table that was in a recessed alcove (but she wasn't ... she was still sitting in the room proper), and I originally thought "oh she must be emailing."

Nope. She was there, milking the girls. For 15 minutes. And there were men the room.

Now ... don't get me wrong. I am all for pumping. I am. In discreet locations. Not in the middle of a conference room where most of the participants are STILL hanging around because they are catching up with one another, getting to know one another, etc.

However, I will have to say I was impressed with the fact that neither pump popped off, spewing milk all over the place. Because I guarantee you that if it had been me who had made that decision, the pumps would have lost their suction, come crashing to the floor, spilling milk all over the place, and I would have been mortified.

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Thursday, March 01, 2007

I lied

I have 5 minutes and I had to blog. Ace just read this little gem to me from our town's docket this morning:

Here's to the future of our town!

Charges of theft, forgery and possessing drug paraphernalia were filed
Monday against a Findlay teenager, age 16, who stole a check from a city
mailbox, forged and cashed the check, and used the money to buy marijuana. The
less-than-contrite suspect admitted to the misdeeds, telling investigators: "It
was worth it because the weed was good.

And apparently this is his supplier:

A youth was in trouble Tuesday for cultivating marijuana, after a parent
found two potted marijuana plants in his bedroom


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The Lovely She, that is me!

I'm a mom of three peeps ... Queen Bee, The Door Man, and the Chandelier Monkey, and wife to Ace, the Helpful Hardware Man. I created this space to get away from the people known as my inlaws, and because life with three kids and a hubby is all Unexplored Territory.

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The nine-year-old who seems to be growing older every minute, has an opinion and a comment for everything, and has a true servant's heart.
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The seven-year-old who loves the organization of things, will someday be someone's therapist because of his kind soul, and will more than likely be living with us until he is 40 years old.
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The five-year-old with the 13-year-old attitude, who has a dictator's personality, asks you to watch her all the time and say "hold on" to keep your attention, and will someday come home on the back of some dude's motorcycle with 10 tatts and a body piercing or two.

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The man of the house, the fixer of things, the winner of prizes, and the only person in his family to escape the South.

Retiring the Blog
A Blast from the Past
Just nothing today ....
Move over, Mom
Because life wasn't exciting enough....
Mystic Pizza
Starting off on the wrong foot
A convo at our house
My 6 am dreams
This, my friends, is the true definition of TMI


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