Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy Belated Birthday, Kady with a D

My dear, sweet Kadybug,

Your 7th birthday letter is just one more example of how the 3rd child somehow gets the short end of the stick. Bless your heart, your baby book has your name in it - and that's it. Your sister's is detailed beyond belief, your brother's is fairly filled-in, but sweetie, let's just face it - yours is blank enough you could just white-out your name and use it for your own child.

I really do apologize for the lack of journaling your life. However, my precious Kady Princess - the memories you give me on a daily basis don't seem to fade over time. I am sure as the years go by they will, but for now I am satisfied in using my blog as your baby book. I hope you are satisfied with that as well.

You are amazing. You are emotional, tender-hearted and incredibly exasperating and over-dramatic, but goodness, I wouldn't want you to be any other way. Well, on most days, anyway. You still seem to think the world revolves around you, but then, you've felt that way since birth, so I don't expect it to change any time soon. I guess all I can do as your mother is just make sure you use your powers for good, not evil.

You are struggling with your spirituality this year and Kady, I cannot wait to see what this next year does as far as your spiritual growth. You ask me questions about God and salvation and eternal life and Heaven and angels and well, let's just suffice it to say you ask a lot of questions all the time. Daily. Constantly. I love your sense of wonder, especially when it come to your relationship with God. Last night we were watching a movie about the Rapture and you were crying (how unusual), frustrated that you weren't saved yet and what if Jesus came back right then? I explained to you that you're asking all the right questions and you're on the right track and when your little brain and heart are ready to understand it all you just will. That's when you wailed, "I can't believe I'm so stupid I can't even be SAVED!" Oh Kady, it was really hard to not laugh out loud at you. Bless your heart.

You have always adored your big brother, but lately you despise him. To me this is aggravating, considering I always wanted a brother and never had one. He worries over you constantly, even while he pesters the devil out of you. Yesterday at the mall the poor boy nearly gave himself a panic attack several times when you got out of his sight. You found him completely annoying and more than once gave him a firm shove with both hands. Now, he could've shoved you right back, but instead he just shook his head - but he never quit watching over you like a hawk. My advice - give him a break. I didn't like your Yaya when we were kids, but now she's my best friend. I would imagine a brother is a wonderful thing to have.

You did not want to be a First Grader this year and for the first few weeks of school you weren't all that fond of your teacher, then something magical happened and the two of you bonded so strongly I sometimes wonder if she and I should start hanging out because you paint quite a picture of this amazing woman. I felt that way about my First Grade teacher, too, though. You love school - oh, not for the work. The work is just a mere inconvenience in your vast social networking for 7 hours a day. You tolerate it in order to be around your friends. Thank God you're smart and the work comes easy so you have more time to lord over everyone in your presence.

Your asthma has gotten so much better this year. I thank the meds and your PA and the good Lord above for this. Of course, you still drag it out when you are tired or feel you have been injustly corrected, reprimanded or simply don't want to do something. Know this, though - I'm no dummy. I know when you're faking. So does most everyone else.
When I think of how easily you could've come too early and how sick you could've been and all the unimaginable things that could've gone wrong, I am so thankful a little asthma is all we have to deal with.

About a week after I found out I was pregnant with you I started spotting. The pregnancy we hadn't planned on, had had no intention of ever experiencing and were totally blindsided by, became suddenly fragile to me. I didn't know how badly I wanted you until the thought of not having you entered my head. Then when you tried to come early I got scared all over again. Fortunately, you managed to stay where you were planted as long as you needed to and a dramatic pre-Christmas entrance into the world just five weeks early was dramatic enough to suffice.
I can only imagine the convincing God had to do to assure you that coming early was not in your best interest and I can only imagine how you argued that dramatics were sure to be your specialty. Thank you for listening - for once.

I've said it many times and I'll say it again - We never knew how much our family needed a Kady until we had one.

Happy 7th birthday (just 11 days late), Kadybug. I love you.

Festivus 2008

My mom's side of the family celebrates Festivus this time of year. We have taken the Seinfeldian holiday and added our own twists, written a set of by-laws that are strictly adhered-to and exchange tacky gifts. It's one of those nights where you wear a panty liner and make sure you don't have gas because all of the laughing is bound to make something accidental happen before it's all said and done.

Some background: Everyone age 16 and above, who are official members of the family by way of birth, adoption, or marriage, are allowed to participate in Festivus. Everyone buys/builds/constructs a tacky gift not to exceed $8.18. The gifts are placed anonymously in a recepticle outside the house where Festivus takes place. Depending on the year, even or odd, the order of gift-choosing goes oldest to youngest or vice-versa. Each person in turn chooses a gift from the recepticle and then the hilarity begins. After all of the presents are opened a winner is chosen by secret ballot voting and the winner wins the Turkey Award. The esteemed winner gets to have their name engraved upon the plaque and the plaque must hang in the winner's main bathroom for an entire year. There are many more intricate details that I won't go into in this post, but if you are interested you can email me.

This is the Official Gift-Holding Recepticle for 2008. The first year, the year we hosted, it was a gigantic black trash bag (does that surprise anyone?) and last year it was a huge box. Guess Cousin Courtney got all fancified this year with a festive red bag. Woohooo!

The gift I gave this year was a "Snoogie," a knock-off of the Snuggie (As Seen on TV!). I know Miss Wisabus will be proud of my gift, seeing as how she mentioned Snuggies in a post about buying Christmas gifts.

The Snoogie was a women's robe I bought at the Friendship House for $1 and then wrote a sheet of instructions on how to wear it backwards. There were also details on repercussions of wearing a Snoogie in public and risking getting the crap beat out of you and a disclaimer stating that wearing your Snoogie to a sporting event could very well cause your team to lose.

Everyone knew it was my gift because the sheet of instructions was a little long-winded and apparently, so am I. Who knew?

Cousin Courtney got a talking Tom Turkey, but when she pulled him out of the box his neck started oozing some freaky goo and he refused to talk. (I'd refuse to talk, too, if my neck was oozing freaky goo.)

So, being a resourceful kind of gal and freakin' hilarious, Courtney just held ol' Tom in front of her face and spoke for him, reading his phrases right off the box. As you can see from the look on my mom's face in the background, it was a riot.

Nonner thought Festivus was boring.

Cousin Kristina opened her gift and as you can see from the look on her face it evidently wasn't something she had put on her list for Santa.

Before you go thinking she was ungrateful, you should read the box:

Nothing says Happy Festivus like anal itch creme. I mean really. Right?

Think about it - the holidays are brighter when your butt is itch-free.

Ah yes.... with my largely political family in an election year we were sure there would be political gifts. Sure enough - someone "personalized" a picture of the Bushes (by way of WiteOut and paste) to the lucky "Glenn Family Festivus Recipient". I find it no simple twist of fate that my Republican husband got it.

But the Republican gifted a hand-made Joe the Plumber ornament, which immediately was given a place of honor at the top of the tree by Cousin Chad.

Cousin Scott got some Farter's Underwear, which boasted a filter in the rear.

Of course, he modeled. And ripped them.

Ooh, what is being shrouded in that large white trash bag? The look on Mom's face is one of pure trepidition, is it not?

Anyone holding a trash bag at Festivus has every right to be trepiditious.

Cousin Courtney is a frequenter of the Friendship House in Miami. It holds a plethora of stuff not even garage sale-able and man, she hit the mother lode.

As soon as Mom pulled out this wicker duck Tater and I both exclaimed that a duck just like that one had sat on the back of an old school desk in our dining room when we were growing up. It had a plant in it. Mom's been getting rid of stuff right and has to wonder if she ended up with her own wicker duck after all these years.

Being a shopper at Friendship House myself, I'm shocked I overlooked this little gem dandy. Pink Santa! Hooray!

Ooooh la la!

I hope she specifies this one for me in her will.

Since Gentleman hasn't joined the family officially by way of birth, adoption or marriage, he couldn't actively participate in Festivus, but he and Tater put their evil heads together and came up with a sweet gift, which I got:

A g-string made entirely of candy necklaces. Since they didn't make it in a size XXXXXXXL to fit my specific hiney, I chose not to try it on for fear the elastic would give and thus shower Cousin Courtney's living room in candy. husband felt it necessary to model my gift.

That's right, folks, just call him Paul "Candy Pants" Hoover the next time you see him.

The air freshener on the butt floss was a thoughtful touch, I thought.

After the votes were cast and tallied, the winner of the Turkey Award this year was Aunt Janet who gifted the anal itch cream. It was a close race between the itch cream and the g-string, which makes me think that 2008 should be declared The Year of the Butt.

The winner gets to engrave their name and some other little saying or, at the very least, the name of their winning gift on the plaque. For instance, Cousin Keith won the first year and of course his was something to do with being #1. Last year Cousin Chad won with his blow-up sheep, so his placard reads "Ewe Can't Touch This." I suggested that Aunt Janet's reads "Funny, 'Butt' I Won" or something to that effect. Given enough thought one could come up with endless ideas for her winning statement this year. Last year I was robbed with my tampon angel ornaments coming in 2nd. I already have a nail on the wall in my bathroom in anticipation of someday winning the coveted turkey. Maybe 2009 will be my year. I have a year to plan...

We all left with headaches and stomachaches from the laughing and just like every year past, we declared this year to be the Best Festivus Ever. I don't know how we keep topping ourselves.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


I hadn't intended on taking a break from the blog this Christmas, but it appears I have. To all who have stopped in after seeing the display at the Park of Lights, first, thanks and second, stop back in. I'm not usually this absent. Promise.

We've had a few snow days, a school Christmas program, school parties, a 7th birthday and bowling party, a family Christmas with my new step sisters and brother and all their kids, Festivus, a trip to the ER to get a piece of wood out of Kady's eye, working the entrance gate at the Park and now finally Christmas Eve. We're worn the heck out. I have oodles of pictures - the most exciting of which are of Festivus where my husband donned a g-string made of candy necklaces - which I'll post Friday when I've had a chance to catch my breath.

In the meantime, I'll share a picture of my kids tonight in the shirts the dogs caused them to get weeks before Christmas because the stupid chewing beasts shredded the package when the mailman left it within beagle-reach:

Because nothing says Merry Christmas like skulls.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Ho Ho Yawn

Folks, I am tired. And I mean tired. It is after 1am and I just finished wrapping our Festivus gifts for tomorrow evening. I really need to do the ahead-of-time stuff for the bruschetta for tomorrow evening, but at this point I'm afraid I'd end up slicing a finger right into the olive salad.

Tonight was Christmas with Mom and Pops and Pops' kids. It's a toss-up as to which of my gifts is best - the hot pink laptop podium from Mom and Pops or the camouflage cloth napkins, handmade by Sister Kendra. Y'all will be begging me for dinner invitations now that you know I have those babies, won't ya?

Kady ended up with MORE Littlest Pet Shop paraphenalia, a fleece blanket with her name on it AND a new backpack with her name on it. Sam got the DS game The Tale of Despereaux and an exploding Spy Gear doohickey which I'm sure will roll into the room and KABOOM at really inopportune times. Abby got a jacket with a skull and her name on it and a chearleading game for the Wii Fit. I know, skulls and cheerleading - she's a little tween enigma, eh? Paul got a cooling station for his laptop. When he opened it I said, "Oh good! I've been so worried about his hot thighs!" And of course he leaned over and made a suggestive comment about heat and thighs. He's so precious that way.

Tomorrow is my Kadybug's 7th birthday. I have yet to write her birthday letter, but then...I still have yet to write anything in her baby book. That poor 3rd child. She tends to get slighted since she was born five days before Christmas. We try so hard to make sure her birthday is special and completely separate from Christmas, but sometimes it's so HARD. Her BFF Jaycee is here tonight and in the morning we'll pick up two of her other friends to go bowling.

After bowling tomorrow I will deliver the girls back home, come back here to make the bruschetta I should be prepping right now, load up and fly to the Park of Lights to see Santa since we're not going to make it to Silver Dollar City this year to see the real one (they're going to have to be content with a "poser" as Kady calls Santa's helpers), fly to town for Festivus then come home, sleep a few hours then get up and go to the church for the Christmas program which I am directing. Eek! Thankfully, though, my Christmas shopping is done and Monday I can sleep in. I think. Unless I'm forgetting some event....must check my calendar....

Oh and for those of you close enough to go through the Park of Lights down by Wyandotte, PLEASE DO. Rumor has it we're getting OODLES of votes, way more than last year. We'd love to win 1st prize this year and we can't do it without VOTES. From YOU. So go through, go often and VOTE for #46! Please?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Redneck and Proud of It

We have the lowest package available on DishNetwork - the Family package. (Which doesn't include the kid-friendly Disney, go figure) While we get Nick, Boomerang, GAC and the Outdoor channel, we don't get CMT, the station that is home to My Big Redneck Wedding.

Remember back a few months ago I kept hinting around about a TV producer, audition tapes and other such silliness? Well, it was because a production assistant from Pink Sneaker Productions, the company in charge of producing such high-quality programming as My Big Redneck Wedding, I Love New York, MTV's Cribs, and Hogan Knows Best, among others, emailed and asked if we would consider auditioning for the upcoming holiday extravaganza My Big Redneck Christmas.

Well heck yes! I called all the folks from Mom's side of the family (even though Paul's family is WAY more redneck than us, they are considerably anti-social) and they were in so we got together, had a weenie roast one Sunday afternoon, filmed the hilarity (rednecks and weenies....imagine the conversations...) and sent off the tape with our redneck wishes and hillbilly dreams inside. The more time that went by we all assumed we didn't get on the show and frankly, I kind of forgot about it. Then one afternoon the production assistant called me to say she had just left a meeting where we had been declared the front-runners and they needed another tape ASAP. We made another tape, kicked things up a notch and sent it off again.

I had been told that filming would take place the first of November and the camera crew never showed up so we obviously didn't get on. Saturday I got a phone call from Cousin Courtney and Aunt Janet because they've got "big cable" and had watched My Big Redneck Christmas. Courtney said that even though she'd only caught the last 10 minutes of the premiere airing, she was really glad we didn't get on - she said the deep-fried possum was just too over the line for her. Aunt Janet's excited phone call was punctuated with my uncle's declarations in the background, "Those folks are professionals!" I guess the horseshoes played with toilet seats, the rolling junk cars down a hill to see whose would crash worse, positioning the yard reindeers in provocative positions and shooting the plastic Santa off the roof was what brought him to that decision.

Now, my mom has told me several times "Honey, you're just not as redneck as you think you are" but I disagree. For one thing, Jeff Foxworthy - who might as well be the Pope of All Things Redneck - defines the word redneck as "A glorious lack of sophistication." Now, we are gloriously unsophisticated, but we are not white trash. Oh yes, Virginia, there IS a difference. I think people have skewed the term redneck into hillbilly bordering on po' white trash and there's probably nothing all of us true rednecks can do about it. It's just that when people see shows like My Big Redneck... they are getting a false impression.

My hopes all along had been to get on the show and clarify this, but obviously they got wind of my conversation plans and nixed it in favor of the people who dangled a cigarette out of the mouth of the mounted deer head on the living room wall. Sorry, our deer is a non-smoker because of Kady's asthma.

Out of curiosity, I'd love to read comments from y'all giving me your personal idea of what a redneck reallly is. Do you think it's all mullets and wife beaters or is more duct tape and Southern engineering? Or maybe it's buying holiday centerpieces at a dollar store? Or possibly angel ornaments made out of tampons or tossing a hunk of roadkill into the turkey fryer around the holidays? Seriously, y'all, leave a comment and tell me

What Redneck Means To You.

Monday, December 15, 2008


There's a new review up at my review site for a product that is near and dear to my heart.

Please take a few moments to check it out!

Plum Crazy

The other day as my aunt and cousin were getting ready to leave my house my aunt asked if I had ever read a Janet Evanovich book. As she held Foul Play out to me I said, "Oh that reminds me - the other day I got an email from Janet Evanovich's 'blog monkey' declaring me to be one of their favorite blogs." It was at that point my Aunt Janet's jaw hit the ground and my Cousin Courtney jumped from her car. Aunt Janet nearly screamed, "YOU GOT AN EMAIL FROM JANET EVANOVICH???" I clarified: "No. Her blog monkey."

I hear blog monkeys can be very flattering - this one had me at "one of our favorites."

After much fast talking from them both I took the book so I could partake of the reading wonderful-ness they were both gushing about rather excitedly in my front yard. I'm halfway through Twilight right now, but with all the snow days we're forecasted to get this week I figure I'll start Foul Play tonight. And no, up to this point in my life, I have never read a Janet Evanovich book, even though my friend Trishia has been trying to get me to for years. I know. I should probably be flogged or something.

The newest book in the Stephanie Plum series coming out January 6th is Plum Spooky. While you wait for January 6th, have a gander at this Preview of a New and Exciting Book/Holiday Greeting YouTube from Ms. Evanovich herself. (Or maybe her blog monkey. Or blog rhinocerous since the blog monkey takes care of emailing. Just a thought.)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Two redneck women, a can of cooking spray and a Christmas tree

Last Saturday I trekked all the way to Little Kansas, OK, to visit my BFF Tiff (who has a brand spankin' new blog, by the way). We met her and her husband, John, back when Kady was probably two, so we've known 'em awhile. Even though I'm 11 years older than Tiff we hit it off right from the start. I swear there are times we share a brain. When they moved to Tahlequah, which might as well have been on the other side of the universe, I was devastated, but I love 'em and wanted the best for them. But....not once did I ever make to to Tahlequah to see them. I know. I'll just put my BFF Award right next to my Mom of the Year Award.

So when I sent Tiff a text last Thursday and asked if she minded that we invade her home on Saturday she said she nearly fell out of her chair in surprise and utter excitement, because, ya know, I often do that to people - excite and surprise.

She had sent the directions in a text message and after Sam's basketball practice we were on the road. Now, maybe I'm just a really slow driver, but Tiff said it would only take 45 minutes to get there. I took us nearly two hours, however, the last 30 minutes were spent driving back and forth on a seemingly endless red dirt road, swearing the entire time that I heard banjos. If I'd seen one toothless hillbilly, barefoot in overalls I'd have been SO outta there, BFF or not. We finally arrived, chatted, got the grand tour of the house, the kids ate, we chatted some more, I burned a few Christmas CDs for her and then she announced it was time to put up the Christmas tree.

Her tree is GINORMOUSLY HUGE and while I was a little jealous, I was also a little intimidated by the behemoth she said we were going to put in her dining room. It made my 6 1/2 foot living room tree look like a shrub and my 5 foot dining room tree look like that poor tree from the Charlie Brown Christmas special. She also had this gargantuan base for the tree that was supposed to rotate the tree to make sure all ornaments have equal face time. I would never be able to have a rotating tree because no matter how hard I try to convince my children the back of the trees need ornaments, too, they just don't get it. My tree would be all sparkle, sparkle, sparkle....bare....bare....bare....sparkle, sparkle, sparkle....

We hoisted the metal pole on the bottom section of the tree into the hole on the base, Tiff tightened the screws and voila, section one of three complete. Yah right. We lifted the middle section and put it into place, except it wouldn't go all the way down into the fitting. We tried to pull it back out and start over, but it was stuck. We took turns holding the base of the tree while the other tried to yank that middle section back up. There was a piece of wire that had gotten in the way, thereby causing the two sections to be forever fused together. We were both scratched up, sweating and had muttered a few cuss words under our breath when Tiff said, "Wait. I have an idea." She went to the kitchen cabinet and whipped out a can of canola oil cooking spray. When I busted out laughing she shrugged and said, "What? The WD-40's in John's truck." And then she sprayed her Christmas tree pole with canola oil. Eventually we managed to get the wire out of the way, but I don't think it had anything to do with the cooking spray, and we took the pieces apart and put them back together correctly. We put the top section on and stood back to admire our handiwork. While we were admiring Sam hollered from the living room, "Y'all know that tree's leaning, right?" The boy nearly got a can of canola oil thrown at his wee head.

But he was right - the tree was leaning and doing it bigtime. After some wiggling, head-scratcing and muttering, Tiff got a screwdriver and crawled under the tree to tighten the screws again. And again. And again. No matter how many times she tightened them they would not hold that tree steady. After she read the directions on the rotating base, it was apparent that her tree was entirely too gigantic for that base. We dismantled the tree, piece by piece, she found a roll of painter's tape (the duct tape was with the WD-40 in John's truck) and she sat in the floor to figure out how to Southern engineer it. She removed the little plastic collar that was designed to steady the a "trunk", aka pole, in the base, then said, "Where's the dang canola oil?" Then my BFF Tiff sprayed canola oil all over the pole and what she did next was so visually hilarious and borderline x-rated that I can't even begin to write about it. When she saw the expression on my face and realized what she was doing we both lost it. She ended up on her back on the dining room floor, I ended up doubled over and we both laughed till we were out of breath. Abby walked through at one point, didn't even ask what was so funny, just shook her head and kept on walking.

When we regained our composure I suggested that instead of lubricating that poor tree any more, why not just use the tape. Of course, by that point we were both slap-happy and our minds were in the gutter so every comment from that point on was chock full of inuendo and made us cackle like a couple of hens. Two hours after we began, her tree was finally standing proud in her dining room, it's base wrapped in tape, and tied to a closet door because it was still a little lean-y.

I'm not sure how to end this story. There are so many ways.

Like, "Redneck Christmas to all and to all a can of canola oil!"

Or, "All I want for Christmas is some WD-40..."

But I think I'll leave you with this - "And remember kids: All of life's problems can be solved with your BFF, a roll of tape and a can of cooking spray."

Friday, December 05, 2008

All Lit Up - The Photos

Since some of you aren't local enough to come visit my display in person I thought I'd share some pictures from the park. Click to make 'em all big and stuff.

Here's a shot of the clothesline. Duh.

Possum #1. Hangin' out on the outhouse.

View from the road.

Possum #2. Lookin' for some vittles.

This sign drives Abby nuts. One of her friends was with us the other night when we went through. She asked, " misspelled 'very'?" Abby rolled her eyes and said, "Ugh. Mom did it on purpose."

Ooh and here we catch a rare glimpse of Redneckus Americus Oklahominid in his native habitat. See how he interacts with the pastel fowl surrounding him.

If you're close enough to NE Oklahoma to come through here you really need to see it in person. And if you've been through, please leave a comment! I'd like to see if anyone is actually paying attention to the giant sign with my web address on it.


* Why is it that I have my best hair days on the days I have no plans to leave the house? While I'm sure someday he'll look back and remember fondly about how gorgeous his babysitter's hair was, I just hate it that Nonner's the only one who sees how awesome my hair can be.

* How much money and talking-into do you think it took to get Barbara Streisand to sing "Silent Night"? I mean really.

* My mom buys the kids an ornament every year that most generally has something to do with their current interests. For instance, we have a metric ton of Tinker Bell ornaments because well, the girls really, really like Tink. Sam has a karate dude for the year he started karate and the year he was into Cars prompted the Tow Mater and Lightning McQueen ornaments.

The other day I called my mom to ask if she had bought Ab's ornament yet. She said she had and I asked what she got her. See, Abby's only interest this year is The Pink Skulls of Doom (thanks to Sam's son Chicken for the name - that's what we call them all the time now) AND whining enough thinking she can wear us down into buying her a cell phone. She's not getting a dang cell phone so I think it entirely fitting that she have a skull ornament for the tree. At this suggestion my mother's head nearly exploded and she screeched, "Heavens NO I am NOT buying that child a SKULL ornament! That's....that's....well, it's just sacreligious!"

My argument? "Mom, it's not sacreligious. Jesus had a skull."

* I took some great pics of the kids last weekend and am planning on framing some and was planning on using them in my Christmas cards. However, since they got their skull shirts early thanks to 2StupidDogs, I'm considering taking some more of them in their skull shirts and using them instead. I wonder how far the screams from my mom's house will travel....

* The other night Cousin Courtney had called to tell me about the two gigantic, bright stars in the sky not really being stars but Jupiter and Venus. I hollered at the kids to follow me out into the yard so we could look at them and ooh and ahh and stuff. Just as we stepped onto the front porch this HUMONGOUS falling star fell right in front of us. It was honestly the biggest falling star I've seen in my life, which a bright trail behind it and everything. What happened next was a big ol' mess of screaming and falling and crying and laughing.

Just a few nights before that, Abby, Paul and I had watched the movie Signs with Mel Gibson. Okay, wait...that made it sound like we watched it with Mel Gibson, but I assure you we didn't. Anyway, the movie is about aliens who invade earth, apparently to take it over and while they're getting ready to invade they make crop circles and stuff. It's one dang scary movie - the suspense is brutal. So when Abby saw the falling star and subsequent trail she apparently thought we were being invaded and let out this ear-piercing, blood-curdling scream, which scared the poo right outta her little brother, who turned around to run back in the house and plowed right over his ltitle sister, who landed on the ground on her backside, and her falling knocked Sam off-kilter and he fell, too. This domino effect of confusion happened in about 5 seconds, but I watched it all in slow motion. Then I laughed till I needed a pantyliner.

* The same night we watched Signs we also watched Mean Girls with Lindsey Lohan. Okay, again, no, Lindsay Lohan did not sit on my couch and eat popcorn and watch herself in a movie. Anyway, that movie just cracked me up. It just reminded me so much of how high school really was. Cliques and groups and popularity issues....gah, so glad that's over.

That being said, I am astounded how many dang people from high school I have reconnected with since I've gotten a Facebook page. Just about every day I either find someone new or they find me. Just this morning I got a friend request and it said we had one friend in common and that friend-in-common was a girl I was in Girl Scouts with and well, I just figured she'd decided to add me because of her. I confirmed her and went about my merry way. I mean, there are a couple of people on my friends list I have never met in my life, but they read my blog, so I added them. Kind of like how Zoot and DadGoneMad have me as friends even though I'm really just pretty much a fan/stalker. Not that I'm saying I have fans OR stalkers because okay, let's face it, I'm just not that popular. Yet.

ANYway, turns out she and I were in Band together and I like, totally went with her brother in Junior High and he was the first guy I ever held hands with and oh wow, she's like, in law school and stuff. *blink blink* Oh my gosh, I just channeled my 15 year old self.

* If I ever volunteer to direct the church Christmas plays again, tell me to not be stupid. Tell me about how no one shows up to practice and how they all repeatedly say, "I can't do this - I look stoooooooopid!" and tell me how my own daughter is the very last one to memorize her lines and honest to gosh, just tell me to take up cross-stitching if I need something to do that bad.

* We try to drive through the Park of Lights every few nights, not only to vote (display #46 - just for the record) but to check to make sure everything's still lit. A friend informed us we had a light out the other night and fixed it for us, but we don't want to rely on the kindness of our friends to take care of any issues.

The other night after church we drove through again. The church is literally right across the road from the park, so any time we're at church we go through. It just kind of makes sense. It had been really windy that day and the coffee kettle and tin pan had nearly blown off the "table" in the display. I asked Sam to get out and fix everything. He gladly jumped out and arranged everything back to normal. He turned and was heading back to the car when he stopped, turned around and went back to pet the possum sitting next to the can of USDA luncheon meat. You just have to wonder what the person in the car behind us thought.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

An itty bitty giveaway.

Head on over to my Review blog to see the newest itty bitty giveaway. If money falls from the sky soon I'll throw something else in with the prize.
So I guess I'm sayin', don't hold yer breaths, peoples, but won't you be surprised if it does?

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Little bit of this, little bit of that

* Wednesday Abby, Kady and I made our final trek to Tulsa and had all of the hardware removed from Ab's mouth. Yay! Paul and I are now trying to decide if we pursue the orthodontist in Tulsa for Sam which would be entirely paid for, but would be a substantial financial undertaking with all the driving and y'all know gas isn't going to stay this low forever OR if we want to put him on Paul's dental insurance in the spring, pay what the insurance doesn't cover, but not have to do all that driving. We've got a lot of figgerin' to do.

* Thanksgiving was an exhaustingly emotional day. I did some crying, some laughing, some thinking, some coming-to-terms and I also ate a lot. (Someday soon I might write about the emotions, but I might not. Don't hold your breath either way.) However, I did not eat any stuffing, though, and that's my favorite part of Thanksgiving dinner. It wasn't because I'm low-carbing or anything. Nope, it was because at 10:30 that night my mom called to ask me how I enjoyed the stuffing at dinner. I realized there wasn't any stuffing at dinner - because she forgot it in the oven. I did that with mashed potatoes once. I thought the table looked bare, so I opened a can of peaches and filled that spot. Hours later I found the potatoes in the microwave where I'd put them to keep them warm. It runs in the family.

* Friday moring I slept until after 10. My entire body ached, but it was still awesome to sleep that late. Later I decided I really can't do that anymore because not only did my not-quite-seven-year-old use the toaster to make Eggos for breakfast, she also used the microwave to heat up the syrup. The toaster wasn't the part that freaked me out - it was the thought of nuclear hot syrup that freaked me out.

* Yesterday the kids and I went to town for Abby's hair appointment. We went to Walmart afterwards and pulled in the driveway right about 4:30. I noticed at the end of the driveway that there was a box on the trunk of the car in the driveway and grumbled because our mailman is either incredibly lazy or scared of my puppies because he refuses to get out of the car to leave a package and instead puts packages and boxes on the trunk of the car or on the tailgate of the truck. It was when I pulled in the driveway that I saw the carnage strewn about the yard - I saw mounds and mounds of chewed up paper and various other undefinable things. It was when I identified three black pieces of fabric as the t-shirts I'd ordered the kids off of Etsy that I started shrieking. Funny how both pups made themselves scarce immediately. They chewed up the Etsy package and also a package full of samples I'd ordered a long time ago - lotion, Windex multi-purpose wipe (I was looking forward to trying those...), shampoo, coupons, etc. Fortunately the shirts are fine, I've washed them and the mud came out fine, but this cannot happen again. Ever. Oh yes, I will be calling the post office first thing in the morning. I have no problem picking up packages in town if the mailman is so big a weenie that he's scared of a beagle and a Jack Russell terrier.

* We put up one of the two Christmas trees today. Our living room is absolutely filled to the brim now and I hate how cluttered it feels, but man, I love my tree. The kitchen/dining room tree will go up probably Tuesday night. It's going to take me a few days to get the dining room rearranged and cleared out so it can go up. Oh yes, there will be pictures.

* It snowed today, pretty hard at times and for a solid three hours. Not one flake stuck.

* We got a Wii Fit last week. I have yet to step foot on it. Tomorrow might be the day. And it might not.

* There's more I could write and probably should, but I'm tired and have to actually get up at 5:30 am in the morning because Thanksgiving break is over. Wah.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Givin' It Away

A new review and a GIVEAWAY is up at my review site.

Have a look and good luck!

Lit up like the 4th of July

Before I go any further, I just want to clarify something - yes, I did delete the previous post that oh so many of you commented on, texted me privately and emailed me about. (And I thank you all so much for having my back on that) It was a pretty personal post, full of anger and angst. I realize I said things that were so very, very true, but those things could also be used against me in some way because that's just how my life seems to go. My kids go to a small school in a small town and we are transplants which means we have a hard time fitting in as it is, I don't need a post written on my blog giving anyone reason to egg my house or put a bag of horse doo in my driveway (which has happened once already anyway).

Sometimes, as bloggers, we have to go back and eat our words. Or just plain delete 'em.

Man, I hope Santa brings me a spine for Christmas.

Okay, on to bigger, better and more lit-up things!

Tomorrow night - Thanksgiving night - the Park of Lights at Twin Bridges State Park opens up!!

If you are local or anywhere close to my neck of the woods you really should make the trip out to the outskirts of Wyandotte, OK, and check out this park. I don't know exactly how many years they've been doing this, but this is my second year setting up a display. If you need directions, just ask. I can get you in here from virtually anywhere - or at least I can send you a MapQuest page that will.

There were 42 displays last year (not sure how many this year) and it takes about 20 minutes to go through, depending on how fast you drive and how long you stop to look at that charming display with the possums and clothesline and outhouse each display. You can go through as many times as you like, free of charge, however there is a donation bucket at the end if you want to donate. When we go we always go through at least twice, usually three times, because the kids love it. We pop in a Christmas CD, crank the heater, roll down the windows and get into the spirit of the season.

Paul and I will be working one of the gates on Tuesday the 16th, so if you come through make sure you say hey. Santa will also be there on the 13th and the 20th to take pictures AND there are free hotdogs and hot chocolate on those nights as well.

Questions? Email me!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Reviews, a New Site and Giveaways - oh my!

Because I'm really getting into the product reviewing I'm doing for MomCentral, I decided to start a new site solely for reviews. It keeps them all together, nice and tidy and y'all know how much I like neat and tidy (except when it comes to my office, but we won't go there today).

At my new review site, The Redneck Review, you'll find product reviews, website reviews, service reviews, movie reviews and any other thing I might possibly find to review. Some of the reviews are compensated and some of them are just because I really think you lie awake at night wondering what my opinion is on stuff. Right? Yep, I thought so.

When I post something new over there I'll make sure to let you know with a quick blurb right here, but you might as well go ahead and bookmark it and check it often. You know, just to give yourself a warm fuzzy. By the way, there's a new one up today! How convenient, right?

Also, to kick off the new site, I'm doing a giveaway! Hopefully, as I get more involved with other sites I will be able to offer more things to you, Constant Reader, just because I luz ya so dang much. By the end of today you should be able to click on over to see what I have to give away! (No, it's not one of the kids. I have too much invested in them to just give 'em away like that.)

Friday, November 21, 2008

A milestone

Well, last night it happened - Abby refused to hug me or tell me she loved me before she went to bed.

I know that there is a collective gasp being heard around the internets right now from all you mommas who can't fathom your child ever doing that and also from you mommas who have actually had it happen to you and you know what I'm talking about.

We are hosting the Glenn family Annual Festivus Planning Meeting (known to normal families as "Thanksgiving" but we are SO not a normal family) tonight and it's been planned for awhile now. In fact, it's on the calendar is HUGE BLACK LETTERS. I've also been absolutely neurotic about the house. Granted, three of the adult family members who will be here tonight are literally in my house five days a week, but still I like for the house to be clean when we're having an event in it. Starting on Monday I began repeating the same phrase over and over again: "Kids, your rooms have to be clean before Friday!" At the beginning of the week I said it nice, as the week wore on I said it with gritted teeth but still smiling, but last night? Ohhhhh ladies and gentlemen, I flippin' LOST. IT.

Little pieces of plastic packaging all over the living room floor from the many, many new Nintendo DS games they've bought recently, dirty underwear in the hallway that no one would claim, yet everyone found it amusing to kick it around like a smelly soccer ball, a hoodie that has been in the Doom Box every day this week (but manages to make it out before its 24 hour limit expires) and the fact that I crunched every time I walked in my dining room were just a few of the things that were annoying the very life right outta me last night. The kids have flat NOT been doing their chores this week. It's been a busy week and I always take that into consideration because - hey, even my chores have slid this week - but stilll......this was ridiculous.

So putting aside my Dr. LoveMom personality and taking on my Mrs. AngryMom persona I began to go ballistic alllllllll over my family. Even Paul was cowering behind his laptop. I knew it was awful even as I was doing it, I knew it was not effective parenting and today I feel bad, but last night it...well, it kinda felt good to just let it all out.

Let me explain: I am a stay-at-home mom and I am so very blessed to be one, however, just because I don't work outside the walls of my home does not mean I am a maid. I am completely happy doing housework (okay, that might be a slight overexaggeration) and heck, if I didn't like taking care of my home I wouldn't be a stay-at-home mom. My kids have chores, they work on commission (I'll do a Works For Me Wednesday on my system soon) and I don't think I'm asking too much. They normally do a great job of helping out, but this week it's like they've collaborated together to see just how far they can push me before I just go utterly and completely bonkers. Last night they found out. I don't foresee them collaborating any time in the near future.

Kady and Abby are usually the piglets of the family and Sam's room is usually spotless, but lately Kady is amazingly neat and Sam is a slob. Notice that Abby's role has stayed constant? Well, let me tell you why. Wait....I don't know why. I just don't. That child is beyond me.

I am a clutterer (You oughta see my office right now. Wait. No you should NOT.) so it's hard for me to preach at the kids about clutter, but complete disregard for TRASH CANS? Dirty, snotty kleenexes do NOT belong in the floor? Smearing toothpaste on the bathroom mirror and then the next person coming along and making a smiley face in it? Stuffing dirty socks into the floor vent? (Oh yes, that has really happened in this house) Stuffing a wet towel in the corner of your bedroom closet? Oh my gosh y'all, do you KNOW what kind of mildew that could produce? Well, I do and that wet towel in the closet was what finally made my oldest daughter mad enough to refuse to tell me good-night or hug me. I guess she just doesn't understand the power of mold.

I was mad, she was mad, it was just a big old mad fest in my house. She couldn't understand why I was upset over the two loads of laundry in her bathroom floor after I had just caught up the laundry earlier that day. I couldn't understand why on earth she had saved every wrapper from that bag of mini Hershey bars she bought last week and had them stuffed in the drawer where her sweaters were at one time neatly folded by me but are now wadded, stretched and snagged. She was stomping around picking up the 11 dirty socks from her bedroom and bathroom floor and I was stomping around pointing them out to her. It was when we were both so mad we were crying that I declared the mad fest to be over and it was time for her to go to bed and frankly, be out of my sight for 9 hours.

This morning she apologized for being a pig and gave me the hug she witheld last night. She also promised to clean her room after school (wouldn't have mattered if she had promised - she was going to, regardless) and I have decided it's time for my 12 year old to do her own laundry.

I personally didn't start doing my own laundry until I was married, however I helped Mom with the laundry when I was in high school. So, what say ye, innernets - when did you start doing your own laundry?

Now You Are Ten

Dear Sam,

Yesterday you turned 10. Son, you've crossed over into The Land of Double Digits. I can't believe you're so grown-up. It seems like just the other day you came into this world screaming your head off, announcing that you had arrived. Our lives have been louder because of you. And I mean that in the best possible way. You bring volume to our lives on a daily basis and to this day I've never met a boy that screams as much as you. I hope you grow out of that before you start dating; I'm not sure how girls will respond to that shrill scream on a romantic date.

Sam, you still amaze me on a daily basis. You are one of the most compassionate people on the planet. The only person I know that was this sensitive and caring at this age was your Yaya. I remember once when she was little your Grammy telling me that she'd give anyone the shirt off her back if they needed it or simply even asked. You, my son, are the same way. Your teacher told me at our last conference that you are not happy unless everyone around you is happy and you go to great lengths to include everyone and make sure they're involved and being included. Please, please, please don't ever lose that ability to see other's discomfort in a situation and do something about it.

This week was Book Fair week at school. Your Granny had given you your Christmas money and you simply could not wait to go buy books! I wasn't all that surprised when you proudly showed me the books you bought your sisters for Christmas with your own Christmas money. You didn't have to do that, but it didn't occur to you to do otherwise.

Here's my advice for you as you swiftly approach your pre-teen years: Be yourself, don't worry so much what others think and just do what you think is right. You make sure you're right with God and what you do makes Him happy. Everything else will fall into place after that. Some boys made fun of your teeth awhile back and it just broke your heart. As you related the event to me you had tears in your eyes when you asked, "Why did they have to do that, Momma? I hadn't done anything to them." Son, I can't tell you why they did it - maybe their self esteem is low, maybe they're just mean, maybe they were showing off. Regardless of why they did it you have to know that there are mean people in this world and you will experience them throughout your entire life. I'm 35 and I still encounter mean people. You just have to ignore them, rise above the situation and never let 'em see ya cry.

You are the child I worried I wouldn't have enough room in my heart for. I cried tears upon tears when I was pregnant with you, wondering how in the world I could love two children when I had so much love for your older sister already. It was an irrational worry because as soon as that doctor laid you on my chest and I saw your crooked little nose and gorgeous face.....well, son, there's no way I can explain it to you, but when you have your own children you'll understand completely.

I love you so much,


Monday, November 17, 2008

It burns! It burns!

Abby has what I guess you might call a "nervous stomach." She's had problems with heartburn and since 4th grade and was my spewer when she was a baby. No kidding, that kid could hit a target across the room with her projectile barfing. We tried all the expensive formulas, etc. and put her on cow's milk at 10 months out of sheer desperation. (Shhh....don't tell her former pediatrician. He'd scold us for sure.) Between 10 months and 4th grade Abby rocked along fine and dandy with a perfectly normal stomach.

4th grade, if you've been around here awhile, was the year we wanted to sell her to the gypsies, the year she developed an attitude, the year she called her teacher "dude." We're not sure if she was struck by lightning, abducted by aliens or if she just developed her own sense of self that year, but that's also the year that the worrying took its toll on her tummy. She'd been a worrier pretty much her whole life, but the worrying never had physical side effects until then. Her PA put her on Zantac syrup twice a day, though, and the heartburn and indigestion magically disappeared.

Until this morning.

This morning when she stumbled into the bathroom, rubbing her eyes, the first words she said were, "Man, I've got some serious heartburn this morning." I said she was probably just hungry, her stomach was too empty and she needed to eat. She nodded in agreement, went up front to get a banana and we all continued our morning routine. About ten minutes later, though, she literally lurched up the hall to me, her hand clutching her belly, the other groping for me. You should know that Abby is not like her younger sister who is a natural-born drama queen - Ab's quiet, understated and non-dramatic. So to see her coming at me like a dancer in Michael Jackson's Thriller video accompanied by the look on her face that immediately told me something is very wrong was disconcerting to say the least.

She laid her head on my shoulder and quietly said, "Oh burns. Bad." After getting her to show me where it was burning (right up the middle, you know - Heartburn Avenue) I sent her to the couch where she promptly curled up, knees to her chin. And then I called my momma. Because that's how I deal with crisis. No one can advise like Momma. Mom suggested someone with more of a degre than "Dr. Mom" so I called the insurance's Nurse Advice Line where I was informed she needed to be seen TODAY if not IMMEDIATELY. That always makes one relax. She advised me to call Ab's PA and if he couldn't see her to call the Advice Line back and she'd refer us on to the ER. So I kept hitting redial until I finally got through to the PA's office where I was informed he's out of town. Well, of course he is. She made me an appointment with the office pediatrician for 2:30, but told me to take her to the ER if I felt it necessary. I had been feeling it necessary for about half an hour at that point. Eventually the burning turned into severe pain.

Abby spent the next six hours curled up in a ball in the recliner while I fretted over whether or not to take her to the ER. She ate ice chips off and on, tried some Jell-O and a few saltines, but anything other than water made her hurt again.

The pediatrician poked, prodded, pressed and then scratched his noggin in utter perplexedness. (Is "perplexedness" even a word? No? Well, I just made it a word, so use it at your leisure.) He asked if there was a family history of gall bladder problems (yes), kidney stones (yes) and/or appendicitis (no). Then he scratched his noggin some more. He checked her urine because he was leaning toward kidney stones, but it came back normal. He said he knew we'd come there for answers, but he couldn't really give us one. He took her off the Zantac, put her on Prevacid, gave her some Levsin for abdominal cramping in case any should occur, sent us home with instructions to take her to the nearest ER if she developed a fever and told her to call her PA on Thursday if she was still having pain.

I hate going to the doctor and not knowing any more than I did when I went in.

While we waited on her prescriptions to be filled we decided to go to Walmart to get Sam's birthday presents. She was hungry so I asked if she thought she could eat a grilled cheese from Sonic. She warily ate it and within an hour was writhing around in the front seat like a maggot in a meat house.

After talking to my momma, my cousin and my sister, we, the Mom Alliance, decided that if she has any more pain tonight she's going to the ER where hopefully they can run some tests and figure out why in the world my 12 year old is hurting like she is. My numerous WebMD searches have me leaning toward appendicitis or a rotten gall bladder. The fact that she eats and then has pain is my reasoning there since that's a sign of both.

Right now she's propped up in her bed like the Queen of Sheba while I listen for any sign she's awake and hurting.

Sometimes being a Mom is hard. I want to fix her. Now. Anyone out there in MomLand have any advice? Feel free to share. I welcome it.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

November 11th, 2008

Dear Papa,

Two years ago yesterday we said good-bye to you and sent you on to Heaven to be with Jesus and Memaw. I still miss you just as much today as I did that final night. At that time I couldn't fathom the world without you in it, that little house on G Street without you in it or my life without you in it. I just miss you so much it hurts.

Yesterday our little town had its first Veteran's Day parade in 50 years. I hate it you missed it - you'd have gotten such a kick out of riding down Main in a Jeep with Uncle Larry and proudly reminding us all the sacrifices you and so many others made. Although for most of my life I thought of you only as a farmer, the older I got, the more I matured, I came to think of you as more things - a Christian, a soldier, a Democrat, a person that everyone liked and admired. Mostly importantly, though, you were my Papa.

Just last week Abby asked me a question that I couldn't answer. I opened my mouth to say, "Call your Papa Leo" but sadly I just said, "Honey, I don't know. If Papa was here he could tell you for sure." She nodded and said, "He was really smart, wasn't he, Momma?"

I miss your gigantic car in the driveway of the house on G Street and seeing it at the head of a lonnnnnnnng line of cars on the highway going roughly 42 mph. I miss your pointy-toed cowboy boots and your snap-front shirts and you wearing a coat in the house. I miss your wrinkly face and skinny shoulders. I miss the way you laughed. I miss the way you lit up when you saw those five grandkids come running at you. I miss the way we'd all walk into your house and almost spontaneously combust because you either had the heat cranked up to 85 in September or had the air conditioner only on fan in the middle of August. I miss the way you never felt obligated to talk if you didn't have something to say. I miss the sounds of HeeHaw or the Lawrence Welk Show coming from your house.

Most of all, though....I just miss you.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Now that I'm a stay-at-home momma once again I
am trying VERY hard to keep my house clean, neat, clutter-free and company-ready all the time.

With three kids, y'all, that is very hard to do. I found myself constantly picking up the kids' stuff and making a little pile somewhere in the living room and then yelling - I mean, gently reminding them - for the objects to be removed from my sight.

So one day while the little darlings were at school I got this brilliant idea. I took an old box, covered it in wrapping paper and then got out my trusty Sharpie marker - I created The Box of the Doomed.

It clearly states on the side of the box the fate of objects found inside.

Simply put - if I find it out of its place, I put it in the box of the doomed. After 24 hours, that object is destroyed. Plain and simple.

Now, instead of constantly gently reminding my children to pick up the things I've gathered throughout the day or after they've gone to bed, it just goes in the box.

Here's the really awesome part - I have yet to actually throw anything away. The kids check it in the morning before school for things I might find after they go to bed. They also check it as soon as they come in from school for things I find during the day. I'm also finding that over time, the amount of objects going into the box is less and less. Glory be, they are actually PICKING UP THEIR STUFF. Added bonus - they're looking out for each other and letting a sibling know if something of theirs is in the box.

Hey, it works for me.

Check out other Works for Me Wednesday posts over at Shannon's blog.


I got this from my long-lost buddy, GoingLikeSixty while I was visiting over there this evening. I'm not going to tag anyone for it, but if you do it, leave a comment so I can check it out!

Four places that I go to over and over:
the kids' school
the ATM

Four people who e-mail me (regularly):

Four of my favorite places to eat:
El Charro
Chik Fil A
Dairy Queen

Four places I would rather be right now:
Disney World
On the Tower of Terror in Disney World
On a plane flying to Disney World
Heck, in a dang bathroom in Disney World would be fine, too.

Four TV shows I watch over and over:
Paula's Home Cookin'
Fresh Coat (on DIY)

Four unusual things in the room I’m in:
A minnow bucket
A duck decoy
A paper turkey that has been decorated with yarn, glitter, sequins and pompoms (we celebrate Thanksgiving Diva style around here ya know)
My husband and his new laptop (Yes, my husband now owns a laptop. Yes, it's weird to see.)

Four concerts I’ve been to:
Chris LeDoux (three times!)
Garth Brooks (back in 1991 before he got really crazy famous - amazing concert)
Brad Paisley
Brooks & Dunn

Four things on my calendar:
(I could be a real smart alleck and say "dates" or "numbers" but I won't)
Forty-leven Christmas program practices
The Glenn Family Festivus Planning Meeting (aka Thanksgiving)
Sam's birthday

Four fears:

Four unusual things in my purse or wallet:
A straw
An asthma inhaler (I don't have asthma)
A McDonald's gift card with .32 on it (hey, it'll cover tax or something)
A pacifier (my youngest child is almost 7)

Four chores I hate doing:
Cleaning the bathroom
Making a bunk bed

Four favorite animals:
(Uhm.....I'm not really an animal person.....)
My husband

Four speed dials on my cell phone:
Schmoopie (that would be the husband animal in the last question)
Poison Control (having Kady as a child prompted that)
My stylist

Four places I have called home:
Rural Wyandotte/Miami, OK
Wyandotte, OK
Stillwater, OK
Rural where I live now, OK

Four websites (not blogs) I visit:

Four people who have been in my car:
The other four people that live in this house - Paul, Abby, Sam and Kady

Four things I am wearing:
NEO sweatshirt
wedding ring

Four things I am looking forward to:
Christmas shopping
Selling the old van so I can actually GO Christmas shopping
Setting up our display at the Park of Lights

Four favorite types of candy:
Hershey's Kisses
Butter Rum Lifesavers
Chocolate Tootsie Pops

Four sports teams you like:
I don't

Four things found in your fridge:
Government cheese
Leftover chicken legs

Four rituals (not just a task) you do every day:
Make tea (first thing I do every morning, even on the mornings I drink coffee)
Put lotion on after my shower
Put on makeup (Yes, even though I'm a SAHM I put on makeup virtually every day)
Check my email

Four things currently within reach:
My cell phone (always)
My drink (always)
A pillow
My Bluetooth adapter for the laptop

Four things you know how to cook (not bake or grill):
Chicken Tetrazzini
Macaroni and cheese (move over Kraft - mine's made with government cheese!)
Fried sweet corn (Utterly divine. The best corn you will ever eat.)
Calico Potatoes (Potato-y heaven in a skillet, y'all)

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Oh the joys

I couldn't take the sound anymore. Sam was playing Playstation and making a noise that sounded like a cross between a wounded cow and a Yeti being run over by a steamroller. I try to ignore most noises the kids make repeatedly because if I didn't I'd be insane - it's really noisy in my house most of the time. But this noise was too much to ignore. I hollered from the kitchen, "Sam! You have to stop that awful noise RIGHT NOW! You're driving me nuts!"

The noise thankfully stopped and then I heard my son quietly say, "Alright, Mom. Sorry. I was just pretending to be Chewbacca singing 'Silent Night.'"


There's been a rash of home break-ins lately; fortunately not in our immediate neighborhood, but there have been enough that it freaks me out. I hate to leave the house even to run to the convenience store these days. I know, I am easily freaked out, but I can't help it. Hey, hearing that one woman actually - unbeknownst to her - interrupted the break-in at her house and when the deputy searched her house to ease her mind found the burglar in her bedroom closet....yeah, I think I have reason to freak out.

Of course, the kids have heard the stories and we've made sure they know we're safe and that we will make sure we don't send them into the house first if it looks like we've been robbed. But only because they asked us not to. You know, because that's why we had kids - to bring us the remote and to check the house for burglars.

So when we were getting ready to leave the house this evening I had Sam leave the TV on. I didn't explain why and he didn't question me. When we got home, though, Abby asked, "Just why did you leave the TV on anyway?" I just shrugged, but she asked again, letting me know that she expected an explanation. I said, "It just makes it sound like someone's home, hon." Her eyes got wide, then she got this smug look on her face as she said, "So what you're saying're a big scaredy cat.....right?" Not letting her get the best of me I just smiled and said, "Yeah. I guess. Hey, don't forget to check your closet before you go to bed. I thought I heard something in your room awhile ago."

Yes. I am evil.


Tonight before bed Kady was reading Green Eggs and Ham to me. She was reading along normally then I noticed she was over-enunciating. Suddenly it hit me - she was imitating Sarah Palin.

I nodded and said, "So....gettin' all maverick-y on Dr. Seuss, eh, Kadybug?" She winked at me and kept on reading.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Tractor pullin' for a good cause

Awhile back I sent an excited Tweet saying that I had just gotten recognized by a reader while I was at a local Native American gaming establishment and that I may have hugged her a little too hard and quite possibly acted like a total dork. That reader was my grade school husband's current wife, Beckie, and let me just say that I really like her. She and I have emailed back and forth several times over the past few years and seeing as how I married her husband approximately 50-some times in the 2nd grade at the school carnival, we share a bond.

So when she emailed me the other day I didn't even have to think twice about helping her out.

Not long after I met Beckie face-to-face her daddy, Zane Starr, had a stroke. She's been staying with him nearly full time, helping take care of him. He doesn't have any medical insurance and bless his heart, he didn't have any house insurance and suffered damage in the May tornado. He has lived in Seneca, MO, his whole life and evidently has a lot of friends because .....

Mr. Starr's friends have rallied around him and are holding a benefit truck and tractor pull this coming Saturday, November 8th, at 3:00 at the Seneca Saddle Club arena. Beckie tells me that there are supposed to be some guys from the Outlaw Nationals there, too. If you're a truck and tractor pull fan, you know that's a good thing!

So if you're local, love tractor pulls as much as I do and want to help someone out, head out to Seneca this Saturday afternoon!

Cranky. Oh so cranky.

Reasons I have to be cranky:

* I NEVER want cereal for breakfast, but today I wanted Golden Grahams for breakfast and there was no milk.


* I am in charge of the church Christmas program and already am being met with "That's not how we did it last year!" and insane scrutiny over every idea I have or put out there, plus teed off teenagers who didn't get the parts they wanted and whiny teenagers who swore they wanted a speaking part but as soon as they saw the script started freaking out.


* Our yard is a ocean of leaves right now - which is fine, I love Fall - but my vacuum cleaner is apparently going toward the light. So basically when you walk through my house now, you crunch.


* I don't have a freakin' CLUE as to when Paul and I will find the time to set up our Park of Lights display.


* I need my highlights/color re-done desperately, but am torn about whether the $65 is really responsible this close to Christmas.

Rassin' frassin' responsibility

* I am sick to death of mean people. I'm tired of my daughter's Middle School drama (oh, it's not bothering her in the least, she's rolling with it quite well), I'm tired of hearing that an Oklahoma blogger I admire is taking heat for her beliefs and views, I'm tired of people thinking their opinion is the only one that matters. So if you're a mean people, please stop.


* Frankly, I'm cranky that I'm so cranky. I've been this way for awhile now. I think I need a trip to Disney World.


Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Won't you play with me?

Okay, so I've never done Works For Me Wednesday before, but I'm giving it a go. Lori swears it will bring scads of people to my little corner of the universe, so we'll give it a whirl. Besides, when I saw that this week's theme was toys I felt the absolute need to chime right in.

My kids are 12, nearly 10 and almost 7. We are rapidly outgrowing toys. Sometimes I feel bad that Kady isn't playing with toys like her older brother and sister did, but then I remind myself that my eternal preaching about how much I hate clutter and excess STUFF around my house may have something to do with the fact that she just doesn't play with toys. I think she might be afraid to play with them. (Kidding! She's not afraid of me in the least, just ask her.)

So here are my recommendations on toys. You know, the toys they no longer play with. (Or end sentences in prepositions with.)

Loving Family Dollhouse - Abby got one of these 12 years ago, so we are totally kickin' the dollhouse old school. Now they have the "Grand Victorian", but I think we have the Early American Right Above the Poverty Level Built in a Subdivision model. Regardless, it's "fancy" to my girls because it has stairs - to them our house would be fancy, bordering on mansion status, if we only had stairs.

The dollhouse just a few weekends ago went up into the top of Kady's closet, but as I slid it on the top shelf Kady asked, "But we can get it down on snow days, right Momma?" They just don't play with it enough anymore, not enough to merit the absolute overtaking of her room because case you're new here, I have OCD and therefore when I get on a kick I BUY EVERYTHING THAT GOES WITH IT. We have a van, a horse-drawn carriage, a wedding archway for the bride and groom I had to have Abby so desperately wanted at age three, patio with grill, garden, treehouse, grandma, grandpa, dining room table with changeable centerpieces so even the Loving Family could celebrate Christmas in style, an entertainment center with VCR......really, I'll stop there.

For those of you who aren't compulsive, you could probably go with a lot less accessories and be fine and dandy. We've had plenty of dollhouses throughout the years, but the Loving Family was the best investment and my grandkids are gonna have a blast with it.

Rescue Heroes - Sam started playing with Rescue Heroes when he was about four and they've only been in storage for a year. He definitely outlasted the recommend age level on these guys. With clever names like Wendy Waters (firefighter), Sandy Beach (beach patrol), Billy Blazes (firefighter), Pat Pending (scientist), Jake Justice (police officer), Rocky Canyon (mountain ranger), Ariel Flyer (pilot/vet) and Roger Houston (astronaut) how could you NOT love these guys? I think what drew me to the Rescue Heroes the most was that during a time of Power Rangers who made my son into a hyperactive destroyer/karate master, the Rescue Heroes dealt out excitement without violence and there was always a positive message in every video. (Oh, did I mention that most of the characters came with a free video? Yeah, that was an awesome bonus.) And of course, my OCD went whole-hog on these as well and we, I mean my son had the Aquatic Rescue Command Center and every vehicle available. They've since gone into storage and while Paul begged, pleaded and bribed me to get rid of them, I just couldn't. I have too many memories of my little boy playing with them and hopefully someday my grandkids will oblige me by playing with them, too.

Sadly, I think the Rescue Heroes are fairly hard to find now, as my searching on the 'net has shown me today. However, eBay might be a place to look if you're interested. Don't look at my house, though - I don't share my toys. I mean, my son's toys.

Check out all of the other Works For Me posts at Shannon's site!

We....the people

Originally published in The Miami News-Record, July 2020 Everything is different now. I’m not just talking about masks and social distancing...