Thursday, January 28, 2010

Icepocalypse! And links!

I am feeling particularly uninspired today because I'm on bigtime pins and needles waiting for this HORRIBLE! TREACHEROUS! DEATH, DESPAIR AND HISTORICALLY SIGNIFICANT ICE! storm that's heading this way. Yahfreakinhoo.

We could either get 1/2" to 1" of ice and 4-6" of snow -- or we could get bupkis. I've never seen a storm so full of ninja-like stealth and mystery. Gary England, Mike Collier, Gary Bandy, Travis Meyer, Doug Heady and the NOAA are stumped as to what, when and where this storm will be at any given time. Sometimes I think God just does stuff like this to make us remember that technology isn't all that.

So instead of a "real" post today I'll do a few shout-outs to some blogger folks, events and sites I like. It's a total cop-out in the creativity department, but just as labor-intensive if not more. (All! That! Linking!) My hope, however, is that maybe you'll find some new reading material and/or time-wasters. I'm all about time-wasters.

First up, is Kellyology. For one thing, she's having a birthday TODAY and she's officially a Cougar. Rawr.

Kelly is also sporting a new blog design courtesy of With a Southern Flair who just happens to be the gal who overhauled my own blog look. If you're in the market for a kickin' new design, custom embroidery (I hear she does Snuggies!) or heck, knowing her she's probably even good at tile grout, give her a holler.

I have recently become enamored with a site called My Life is Average, or MLIA as all the cool kids call it. If you have ever felt your life was just a little too average, check out this site. Most of the posts are from teens or college students and some are outrageously far-fetched, but I still can't stop reading them! I have spent many an evening reading the posts out loud to my family. (Well, only on the nights I have the remote hidden under my Snuggie. On those nights I call the shots and they have no choice but to listen.) is one of those sites I am utterly intrigued by. I have yet to order anything from them because the deals post at Midnight and uhm...yeah, bedtime for me is before that. Because I'm old. The really good stuff is snatched up nearly as soon as it posts, but if you're a night owl and love to shop online, woot yourself on over and grab up a bargain or two. The t-shirt designs are worth going over to see. I love me some geeky t-shirts.

Miss Wisabus -- That's all I have to say. Just go.

I can't post all these links without giving some love to People of Walmart and Cake Wrecks because well, we all like to see everyone else's messes, too, right?

Kiddies - okay, Oklahoma blogging kiddies -  you have less than a week left to get in your nominations for the 2009 Oklahoma Blog Awards, an event I personally always look forward to so that I can either get my ego boosted or crushed. Either way, we're all winners, right? RIGHT? There are some new categories this year and Jen seems to be handling the running of the whole shebang quite well. Major props to her for taking the reigns in Mike's absence! 

ATTENTION: I am going to this. Did you see that? I AM GOING TO THIS! I AM! I AM!

Tulsa Blogger Meetup

Well, providing we 1) survive the Icepocalypse and 2) can make it there safely without sliding into a ditch, getting stuck and having to use my iPod for warmth or to beat my husband over the head until he is unconscious. But yeah, we'll be there. "We" as in myself and my husband. Kellyology has already offered to buy him beverages if he'll just let me go, so the dude is all kinds of on board. If anyone else would like to extend such an offer you will only insure the excitement of meeting me so keeps those offers coming, kiddies!

And finally, in honor of the impending DOOM! of the forthcoming Icepocalypse, go read Tasha's list of what to have on hand during an Oklahoma ice storm and JenX67's list of lessons from the worst ice storm ever. Stay safe, stay warm and remember, fellow Okies, tornado season is just around the corner!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Thirty Seven

Thursday was my birthday and well, I get pretty excited about having a day that's pretty  much all about me. I don't like the whole getting older thing that goes along with it, but I do like me some attention and presents.

I was flying pretty high what with the whole being on the front page of the newspaper on Tuesday (for winning 1st place at the Park of Lights) (WOOT!, btw)  and then having my SECOND column for published and then knowing my baby sister was going to be in town this weekend and I would actually get to SEE her (something I haven't done since November) and of course,anticipated birthday presents and all that -- when I had the rug of happiness jerked out from under me on Wednesday evening. I am fine, but let me just say that the phrase "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me" is a LIE because words hurt plenty. I'm not going into it because I'm not ready, but I might be someday. And I might not. But I can tell you this: I have a wonderful mother.

After my crying subsided and Mom made me feel better (as mommas are wont to do) she said, "That settles it. Tomorrow I'm picking you up in the morning and we're spending the whole day together." Of course, because her awesomeness is overwhelming at times I busted into tears again. She had already planned on taking me to lunch on my birthday, but now the prospect of a whole day out of the house with my mom? SUH-WEET. She needed to visit her flea market booth and do some rearranging and invited Conner and I to tag along. It sounded spectacular.

Thursday was a rainy day, but then again most of my birthdays have been. Well, except for the ones where we were snowed in. Thanks to global warming now I just have sloshy birthdays. She walked in the front door with a bottle of laundry detergent and a 12-roll pack of toilet paper and really, had those been my only presents I'd have been stoked beyond belief, but no, she had MORE. A bottle of perfume and two bottles of lotion ALONG WITH Young Doctor Frankenstein, a movie I still laugh at until I wheeze and it never ceases to be funny. The rain could in no way damper what had started off as a spectacular morning.

We loaded her flea market junk items into my van, plunked Conner into his carseat and off we headed to the big town of Miami. First stop? Her office to sign a paper. I know, try to contain the excitement, Diva, we're not sure we can handle it. Second stop? The water board to pay my water bill. Then DHS to turn in some paperwork. I KNOW! We were on FIRE! It was then 10:30 and we didn't have time to go the flea market and back before lunch, but it was a smidge to early to actually go eat lunch. Driving down Main we pondered all the possibilities of a time-killer in Miami, America, and decided there are none unless you want to go to Walmart. Neither of us wanted to do that, so we settled on Dollar Tree.

I love me some Dollar Tree. We let Conner play with the balloons they fill with helium and let the strings dangle into your face right there on Aisle One. The lady working there wasn't happy, but hey, they're the ones that let those things dangle like that. We both busted into spontaneous song on Aisle Three with a loud, scary version on Neil Diamond's "Heart Light" and I still don't remember why, but needless to say it was HILARIOUS. We scored three GIGANTO ink pens for the kids to take to Disney World this December (the characters need the big pens to sign autographs because well....they're big) and Mom bought me FIVE packages of fruit-flavored Mentos. I love me some Mentos, too. Nom nom.

After wasting 45 minutes in Dollar Tree, the Taj Mahal of Cheapness, we traveled to Stonehill Grill for lunch and then it was off to the flea market. Conner took about a 15 minute nap on the way and I had hoped he'd continue snoozing for awhile, but one yip from the little dog roaming the aisles and he awoke with a "oof", ready to play. We helped Mom with her booths - and by helped I mean we basically stood in the way and provided comic relief. I mean, how cute and hilarious is it to see a 19 month old adorable little boy using a 14" embroidery hoop as a steering wheel to drive up and down the aisles? Little old ladies and men were coming back there just to see him.

We came back to the house about an hour before the bus was supposed to get here and dove into the scrumptious cake Mom made me - a Better Than Almost Anything cake. Oh good golly, cake that wonderful should probably illegal everywhere except Las Vegas. After cake Mom was introduced to the wonderfulness that is a Snuggie. She loved it so much she promptly fell asleep in my big chair while Conner watched Dora and I put some pictures on a memory stick for her new digital picture frame. The kids got home from school and got some Grammy loves before she had to rush off to Bunko, then I threw some PB&J at the kids before ball practice ..... and that was my 37th birthday.

I saw Sis last night at the boys' second basketball game (the first one coincided with Kady's second game of the day so Paul and I divided and conquered) and at the game she presented me with Season 1 of Glee on DVD and an AFLAC duck that quacks AFLAAAAAAAC and makes me laugh like a giddy four year old. The DVD itself was enough to put her in Best Sister Category for like, ever, but the duck threw her over and then some.

Now to round out what was about a 98% AWESOME week Kady has acquired a phenomenal stomach virus which landed she and I on the couch last night, her yarking every 45 minutes and me holding her hair back, breathing through my mouth and trying not to join in. (I hereby apologize to all the members of the 2nd and 3rd grade A team for any spontaneous yarking your own daughters may now do.) This week's plans include preparing for Icepocalypse which is supposed to hit on Thursday. BE YE WARNED. I'm going to Walmart on Tuesday to stock up on toilet paper and sugar and tortilla chips and soup, so if you wanna meet up give me a holla. If you plan on being hysterical and jerking the Quilted Northern from my hands you can stay at home or risk being punched in the back of the head a sharp verbal reprimand from yours truly. Either way it should be fun!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

And now I'm posting to my blog FROM MY PHONE. Somebody should probably ground me from my electronics before I try to text dinner to my family.

I'm Just Poppin' Up Everywhere

I heard the other day that Facebook and Twitter are killing blogging. Kind of like video killed the radio star. And how I haven't shaved my legs in weeks kills any kind of bedroom mood that may or may not try to occur during the winter months. And how that adorable 18 month old who has been feeding you Goldfish crackers kills your appetite when he attempts to feed you one covered in his slobber. Like how....oh, you get it?

Anyway, I am on Facebook and Twitter constantly and my little micro blurbs and quips do take away my regular blog posting and that makes me sad. I do love my blog and I love that some of you still keep showing up and I swear, I don't mean to be mean to the blog that has been so good to me over the past five and a half years. Swear. But see, I got this iPod for Christmas and I uhm....can't stop using it and stuff. And I have been known to wake up at 3 a.m. and check Facebook to see who has insomnia. BECAUSE I CAN.

That all being said, I am now somewhere else on the Web as well - I have a column at a local news site, I have been given this wonderfully amazing opportunity by fellow blogger and good friend, Tyson Wynn. My column is called "The Diva Dish" and well, when I asked Tyson what kind of writing style, what subject matter he wanted, he said, "Whatever you're good at, capitalize on that." So pretty much the column will be about battling gray hairs, living with a moody teenager, juggling the schedules of three kids, spending the majority of every day playing with Conner and how to keep a fabulously messy house. I am good at all those things. Especially the messy house one.

The WelchOK site is a great new site and while yes, it is catered to the citizens of Welch, those of you who are local can benefit as well. Check it out, bookmark it and make sure to check back weekly to see what I'm dishing out. Leave comments on the pieces you read (not just mine) and let Tyson know you've been there. He'll appreciate it. Promise. Because that's how he rolls.

And now, because I am going to forego Twitter and Facebook for once I leave you with a thought that I was originally going to post to both:

My feet are cold.

Friday, January 15, 2010


Several years ago I bought a calendar that was supposed to make me a bazillion times more organized because it came with stickers. There were stickers for dentist appointments, eye appointments, date nights (ha!), sleepovers, tax appointments, road trips and zombie apocalypses.

I always forgot to use them.

Since that first insane thought of organizational nirvana I've bought the same calendar twice, plus a Sandra Boynton calendar with stickers AND a FlyLady calendar with stickers -- so now I have enough stickers to wallpaper the bathroom and no more organization than when I started.

This year, 2010, the year of golden dreams and financial freedom and a Disney trip and peace and harmony and PLEASE DEAR LORD LET IT BE NOTHING LIKE 2009, I decided that instead of buying a fancy calendar with stickers and pretty colors and cutesy animals cavorting amongst the dates I'd just buy a boring, gigantic desk calendar to mount to the wall and use all those stickers from years past.

(Right now there are adorable dancing pigs in top hats dancing across New Year's Day. Am I more organized? Nope. But dancing pigs make me laugh, so it's all good.)

I had the calendar out, inserting basketball schedules into every Saturday from now until Kingdom come and I had the stickers out in an effort to plan for the next few months in a colorful, entertaining way. Kady was reading over this month's birthdays and when she plays ball and when Sam plays ball and I was pretty much tuning her out because OH THE WORDS. THE WORDS! THE CHILD NEVER STOPS TALKING. And yeah, I tune her out sometimes. Just send my Mother of the Year award to Disney World because have I mentioned I AM GOING THERE THIS YEAR?

Kady finished reading the dates and events for January and moved on to reading every. single. sticker. on every sheet of unused stickers accumulated over the last five years. Again, I was tuning her out, inserting a "Oh?" or a "Hmm" where I thought appropriate, but then I realized she seemed to be stuck on a word. I listened. (Shocking, I know)

"P - p - msssss. Ppppppuuummmmmmssssss. Pums. Pums! Pummm-pummm-pmmmmmsssss."

For the life of me, "pums" wasn't ringing a bell for anything familiar to me.

I finally asked, "Kay, what are you trying to say? Spell it for me."

"Okay. P-M-S. What's that spell, Momma? What's a pums?"

After a little chuckle and a clarification that it was initials that stood for something, I explained that it was something that girls who get their period get sometimes, that we get cranky and we feel fat and we get zits and we want chocolate and lots of sleep and Daddy gets very annoying during this time. She listened, her little chin resting in her hand, taking in all the information I was doling out. This whole puberty thing is mesmerizing to her.

When I was done she nodded, sighed and said, "Great. Zits and feeling fat. ON TOP OF a period!?!? Just something ELSE to look forward to!"

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Match Your Aytion

The 18th was the kids' last day of school for the year and the powers that be at the school decided that it was the perfect day for The Maturation Talk for the 5th graders. It was on the school calendar, so I immediately started teasing Sam about it.

When Abby was in 5th grade and I knew The Maturation Talk was coming up I chose a day she and I were headed to Tulsa (captive audience, you know) and gave her MY version. We discussed periods, boobs and hair - the trifecta of puberty for a girl. I threw in a dash of PMS and a smattering of reproduction, but she didn't ask and I didn't go further. You really need to go read the post I wrote shortly after we had our talk. It's touching. Really.

Abby is a very laid-back kid and always has been. She took our Period Talk in stride and when they did The Maturation Talk at school it was no big thing. When I asked her about it that night she shrugged and said, "Meh. They didn't tell us anything I didn't already know. Big deal." Last year she did WiseUp which is Sex Ed through the county Health Department and gives the kids twelve weeks of information about abstinence, monogamy, contraception, STIs, relationships, abuse, etc. Before that, too, I gave her my take on sex and relationships, contraception, etc. and again, she was completely cool with it. (It also did my heart good to know she knew NOTHING prior to our talk. Thank God for innocence and small schools.) Basically, she's open and honest and mature about all of it.

But Sam, ohhhhh my Sam....he's a little more uptight. Okay, he's a lot more uptight.

I, of course, razzed him almost daily up until the 18th and finally he'd had enough and asked, "Okay, so what's so important that they're going to tell us?"

*blink blink*

It occurred to me at that precise moment that I had no clue on earth what they were going to tell the boys. So I went to my husband and said, "Your son is on the edge of puberty and they are going to give them The Maturation Talk at school next week and you should probably tell him what to expect." Paul looked terrified. I leaned in and quietly said, "Not that talk, just the talk about hair and BO and you know." With the words "you know" I nodded toward his crotch.

Now, the grin that came across his face should've been warning for me to just say, "You know what, nevermind. The school can take care of it," but I wasn't quick enough. Instead my husband turned to my son and said, "Hey, Sam. Your wiener's going to start getting bigger." Then he looked back at me and said, "Okay. I did it. Happy?"

Oh, delirious, my love.

A few days later I took the opportunity to expound a little more on what the subject matter of The Maturation Talk would be. I also said, "Not being a wiener-owner myself, I'm only speculating, of course, but I can tell you about what the girls will learn." The pale complexion on my 11 year old son's face did not deter me as I delved into Periods and Pads and PMS because it just so happened that my nearly 8 year old daughter decided to sit in on the conversation and I figured I might as well hit the proverbial two birds with one stone. She was mesmerized, but completely un-traumatized. Sam, however, was shocked and appalled. I ended the speech with, "And son, if you ever hear a girl mention her period, PMS or if you notice more zits on her face than usual and possibly uncontrollable tears for no apparent reason, go to her, place chocolate in front of her and walk away. DO NOT make eye contact and do not engage her in conversation. Just give her chocolate and walk away. Trust me on this, dude." Abby walked through the dining room about that time and said, "Amen, sister."

The Day of The Maturation Talk came and I sent him off to school with a "Have fun learning about your wiener! See you at the Christmas party this afternoon!" having no idea that my son would be forever traumatized by the day's events.

Apparently, the girls and boys emerged from their separate classrooms after The Talk with looks of horror on their faces and stumbled weakly to the cafeteria where not one of them ate a bite of their lunches. Imagine roughly 40 10 and 11 year olds staring blankly ahead with trays of food in front of them. I hear it was quite a sight. And of course, leave it to my son to be the most vocal about his vehemence to NEVER mature into puberty - so much so that his teacher actually caught me out in the hall during the Christmas party to tell me that he was very upset with the new information. She said Abby's class was the most mature they'd ever had, my niece's class was the most innocent and unknowing and Sam's the most traumatized. I can only imagine what Kady's class will be like. That class may end up teaching the teachers a thing or two.

I tried all evening to get Sam to tell me what they talked about because, well, I'm curious. I mean, I only went through puberty as a girl. I'd like to know the rest of the story, Paul Harvey. He adamantly refused to speak of the horror for days and it took lots of space, some good-natured ribbing and his Grammy fixing him up a goody bag of deodorant, body wash and cologne to finally break him down enough to tell me OH MY GOSH MOM MY *dramatic pointing to his crotch* IS GOING TO GET BIG AND I DON'T WANT IT TO BE BIG AND PLEASE MAKE IT STOP AND I NEVER WANT TO GROW UP AND THIS IS AWFUL DO I REALLY HAVE TO? SERIOUSLY DO I HAVE TO? PLEASE SAY NO OH MY GOSH THIS IS BAD REALLY BAD.

Once again it is made starkly clear that my three children couldn't be any more different - I have one who analyzes and dissects the scientific inner workings of the human body with quiet curiosity and maturity, one who is so repressed he'll probably end up in therapy or become a monk and then of course, there's the one who wears stripper dust.

So, so many reasons to be proud.

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...