Friday, November 30, 2007

My Guestmap

To those who haven't yet...if you scroll to the bottom of my page you can click on the button (the one with the little globe on it) to put your location on my guestmap so I can see where everyone is from. I know it is hard to get in the exact right spot if someone is already near to where you are...but just get as close as you can. :)

Blinded By The Light

Christmas lights make me happy. They make me feel all warm and fuzzy. They make me want to sing. There is something so captivating about a house lit up all glowing and bright on a beautiful December night. (Man, there I go all rhymie rhymie again!) My family has a tradition where, on Christmas Eve, we all get a new pair of pajamas, put them on and then drive around looking at all the beautiful Christmas lights in the area. It is so much fun to see how different the homes are decorated. Some are so beautiful I could stare for hours.

However, others miss the mark....

We discovered, after spending our first Christmas in Florida last year, that people here tend to overdo it a little when it comes to Christmas lights. Ok, they overdo it A LOT!! Most people in Florida are transplants here from somewhere further north. I decided that some people simply overcompensate for the fact that it doesn't FEEL like Christmas here because it is still so warm out.

Sing along with me...*clears throat*.."Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful. And since we've no place to go...LET IT SNOW. LET IT SNOW. LET IT SNOW!" (*bows* Thank you. Thank you very much.) In Florida, the weather outside in December is polar opposite of frightful and if we lit any sort of fire in our fireplace, we would be sweating our buns off.

In the mile that it takes me to drive to get out of my neighborhood I think I pass about 15 glowing reindeer, an 8 foot long gleaming train, 2 smiling snowmen all ablaze, a luminous mama bear with cub (both are wearing Santa hats), a flashing snowman, and about 5 swirling Christmas trees made out of tubes with lights shoved through them. Don't get me wrong. I think there are many beautiful decorations one could put in their yard. In fact, I kind of like the glowing polar bears down the street. However.......everything in moderation.

But, on the upside, I don't have to hear my children complain about being afraid of the dark when I put them to bed for the next month, because with all the Christmas lights on in the neighborhood, there is no such thing as dark.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

"Duck and Cover"

My boys belong in a wrestling ring. They are constantly fighting. They fight over toys. They fight over food. They fight over who said what and who was looking at whom. They fight over everything. Today, I had to break up a fight that was ignited by a commercial for a small, toy castle . Kyle says it was grey. Evan says it was blue. They actually came to blows because of this. This is what my day is like.....

While making breakfast... "Boys, stop arguing!"
Loading them in the car... "Boys, stop yelling and get in your seats!"
Driving in the car to Kyle's school..."BOYS!!! Keep your hands to yourselves!!"
Driving back home after I pick Kyle up..."You guys! Knock it off!"
Me making lunch for them...."Kyle, stop smacking your brother in the forehead!"
Me while they are eating lunch..."Evan!!! Stop throwing food at Kyle!"

I spend the rest of the day running from room to room pulling the two of them off of each other and shouting things like...

"We don't bite!"
"Get your finger out of his eye!!"
"Get off him!"
"Put down the toy and step away slowly!"
"STOP IT!!!!"

I have told some of you before that I do not believe these are ordinary toddler on toddler fist fights. They are vicious! They draw blood. I actually have to get in between them and physically separate them and let them have time to cool off before they can be back together (which will then last about, oh, 40 minutes before the next fist fight....and that is a generous estimate). It's not like I let them get away with it. They are punished when they fight. But, for whatever reason, they can't seem to figure out that fighting is BAD and not something that mommy will tolerate! I can't imagine what I am going to do when they are 14 and 16 and are having these fights. I guess I need to start practicing my "duck and cover" maneuver.
So anyways, the other day they got into it and Evan ended up with a bloody nose. His father's way of helping out......shove some toilet paper up there! So, here he is in all his "toilet paper shoved up the nose" glory.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Kids Say The Darndest Things

I was reading another blog about the funny things our children say. It reminded me of something funny my little Kyle said last year. He was not quite to his 4th birthday at the time.

We go to church. Our children go to their classes each Sunday and are taught many lessons....including those about The Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Most of the time, if asked a question about what they have learned, the answer is "I dunno." So, sometimes we wonder if they are actually listening to ANYTHING that is being taught.

Well, last year my dad went to Colorado to visit my oldest brother and his family. My dad and my brother went out hiking in the mountains early one morning to try and get some photos (both of them are amazing photographers!!). When my dad came back home, he was showing some of the pictures he took to Kyle. They came across a few photos of a mountain goat that they had happened upon on their hike.

Kyle looked at the pictures for a few seconds, and then looking up with his big, beautiful, blue eyes asked, "Mama, is this the holy goat?"

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Ahhh, The Wonderful World of Walmart

Those who know me well know that I don't swear. Ever. I have been married to my husband for almost 9 years and he has heard me say a swear word one time. And immediately after, I yelled at him and told him he was a bad influence and told him he was no longer allowed to swear in front of me. (To this day he still gets a good tongue-lashing when he lets a word slip). When someone asks me, why don't you swear? I always just say "because." I don't really have a reason. I just don't. Well, from now on, I have a good reason......Did you know that swearing in public is against the law? No? I didn't either. That is, until last night.

My night started out no different than any other. I had to go to the grocery store. I had been putting it off because I knew the store would be packed with Christmas shoppers. Much to my surprise, when I pulled into the parking lot, it was relatively empty.
At one point I found myself standing alone in the cereal aisle....not another person in sight. I was worried for a second that I had been sucked into another dimension. An empty Walmart aisle is unheard of! Little did I know this was the calm before the storm.

So, I was meandering through the aisles, and dare I say....enjoying it...a little. I started up the juice aisle and saw there was a young man....we'll call him Roy... in an electric wheelchair/cart thingy coming towards me. He was the only other person in the aisle. He was maybe 22. I wondered for a second as to why Roy was in the wheelchair. As I strolled closer I noticed he had one foot that was bare. It was swollen and black and blue. I noticed he was talking on his cell phone as I walked past him and he was complaining about some sort of verbal altercation he had just had with another shopper....who we will call Larry.

All of a sudden, Larry comes running around the end of the aisle (along with about 6 of his closest friends)towards where I am standing beside Roy. Larry is irate. He is screaming. "Who you talking about %$#@&!?" Roy hops up...and when I say "hops" I mean, literally, he hopped...on one leg...and starts screaming back. I couldn't have been more than two steps away when I heard a loud CRASH and turned around to see Larry throwing Roy into the shelf of crackers. Small boxes of goldfish crackers went flying everywhere.

I picked up my pace and ran out of the end of the aisle and turned to see what was happening. The two GROWN men then proceeded to beat on each other.

At this point in the story I have to interject. So, if you were a an electric cart....with only one good foot....and you felt like picking a fight, would you pick a fight with a robust-looking man accompanied by a small posse? NO..? Yeah, me either. So anyhoo...

Roy was screaming out expletives. Swear words, curse words, racial slurs, every four letter word you can think name it, he said it...and then some! Most of these words were not appropriate for my adult ears to hear...let alone the little ears that were unfortunate enough to be within earshot.....which was at least half the store. Roy had a great set of lungs, if ya know what I mean.

I expected, at any point, to hear them come over the loudspeaker and say "Attention Walmart shoppers, will the morons that are fight in aisle 7 please leave the freakin' store!!" That's what I would have done if I was the Walmart manager.

Along with Larry's posse was his son. He was maybe 10 years old. He was yelling "Daddy! Stop! Please! Stop!" It was heartbreaking! So after about 20 seconds another shopper.....a big, burly guy, stepped in and tried to break them up. It ended up taking him and 4 other Walmart employees 2 security guys and 2 guys from the meat department)to pull them apart and separate them.

I just walked into the next aisle and went on with my shopping. Contemplating why, certain men, were willing to throw punches over the dumbest things. So, I had made my way up to the frozen food section when I saw a Walmart security guy, the big, burly peacemaker guy and a sheriff, walk into view. The burly guy pointed to me. Oh crap. I had a feeling my ice cream was going to be melted before I could get it home....

So, I had to go talk to the police and tell them what I had seen. When I stepped outside there were SIX police cars with their lights all flashing. At this point, I was really wishing I HAD been sucked into another dimension in the cereal aisle.

Larry was arrested for throwing the first punch and Roy was arrested for....can you guess it?? ..........Using profanity in public!

So, the next time you are in the produce section at the supermarket and you grab an apple and a whole bunch more fall on the floor, choose the words you shout out carefully!! :)

P.S. I now know I am a true blogger (as if there was nay doubt before). The entire time I was watching the fight and staring at the flashing lights in the parking lot I was so bummed because I kept thinking...."Dang! I wish I could have brought my camera. This story would be so much better when I blog about it if it had pictures to go with it!"

Monday, November 26, 2007

A Horse That Can Run Really, Really Fast

Today, I have had an ongoing conversation with Kyle about what he wants to ask Santa to bring him for Christmas.

"A horse" he said.
"A horse?"
"Yes. I want a horse that can run really, really fast."
"Well, I don't think we have enough room here for a horse. Plus, a horse costs a lot of money."
"It's ok. Horses like to live outside. We can keep him out there. (he points to our lanai)
"Well, first of all, I don't think the screen is strong enough to hold in a horse and second, I don't think he would have nearly enough room to run. Especially if you want a fast horse. Don't you think a fast horse would need room to run?"
He laughed at me and threw his head back like I was crazy. "Mom! He wouldn't run in there. I would take him for a walk."

This seemed logical to him. Now, normally I wouldn't mess with the list of things that my children want to ask Santa for. That is their decision. However, I didn't want Kyle to spend the next month thinking he had a chance at getting a horse on Christmas morning and be crushed when he woke up and....(shocker!) no horse. So we spent all morning off and on discussing why it was an impossibility for him to own a horse. By the time we went to get Mikaily off the bus he had finally dropped the conversation.

When we go out to the bus stop we stand right beside a small chunk of a nature preserve. So, there are pretty big tress and thick undergrowth. Evan started asking me what kind of animals lived in there. Monkeys? Tigers? Lions? I told him no, to all of the above. Kyle then asked what kind of meat eaters lived in there. I told him probably some alligators and there was always the possibility of a Florida panther being in there.

"Do alligators live in Ohio?" he asked.
"What about panthers? Do they live in Ohio?"
"Nope. No panthers either."
"What kind of meat eaters live in Ohio?"
"There are bears in Ohio."
"Ohhhh, bears are big, aren't they?"
"Yes, some bears are big. Some bears are small, too."
"What if a bear came and knocked on the door?"
"Ummm, well I think if a bear knocked on the door I wouldn't open it."
"But what if the bear ripped open a hole in the door and ate Alaina and Devyn. That would make me so sad because I would miss them."

I laughed a little at this absurd thought process, but played along.

"Yes, I think I would be really sad too."
"And then Jill wouldn't have any baby. And she would cry at her house and everyone at our house would cry too."
"I don't think you need to worry about that buddy. No bear is going to get Alaina or Devyn. Ok?"
"Can a bear run really fast?"
"Yeah, I think bears can run pretty fast when they want to."
"Do you think a bear can run faster than a horse?"
"Well, if I had to guess...? I would say a horse could probably go a little faster than a bear."
"So, if we had a horse, then I could jump on the horse and grab the babies and run away from the bear and he couldn't get them. So I think we need to tell Santa about the horse."

Hmmmmmmm, I think I smell a sales career in this kids future!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Brain Teasers

I got this from my sister Jill in an email and found it amusing. The following is 4 questions and then a bonus question. The email stated that you had to read the question and answer the first thing that popped into your head. You aren't allowed to spend time to try and double check your answer.

I will say that I tend to think of myself as a reasonably intelligent person, it's a good thing the score from this little quiz here didn't determine whether or not I got into college. :)

Question 1:
You are participating in a race. You overtake the second person. What position are you in?

Answer: If you answered that you are in first place, then you are absolutely WRONG!! If you overtake the second person and you take his place, then you are second place! (did ya get it right?? I didn't.....)

Question 2:
If you overtake the last person in the race, then you are...?

Answer: Not in the race to begin with!! If you answered last than you are wrong AGAIN. Tell me, how can you overtake the LAST person in a race? (I missed this one, too. hehe)

Question 3:
This one is Very tricky arithmetic!
Note: This must be done in your head only. Do NOT use paper and pencil or a calculator. Just try it.

Take 1000 and add 40 to it. Now add another 1000. Now add 30. Add another 1000. Now add 20. Now add another 1000. Now add 10 . What is the total?

Answer: Did you get 5000?? I did when I tried it!! And guess what?? I was freaking wrong AGAIN!! The answer is actually 4100. You can check it with a calculator if you need to.

Question 4:
Mary's father has five daughters: 1. Nana 2. Nene 3. Nini 4. Nono. What is the name of the fifth daughter?

Answer: Did you guess NuNu? Well, it's MARY!! (I actually got this one right!! Yeah!! 25% is better than nothing, I guess!)

A mute person goes into a shop and wants to buy a toothbrush. By imitating the action of brushing his teeth he successfully expresses himself to the shopkeeper and the purchase is made. Next, a blind man comes into the shop and wants to buy a pair of sunglasses; how does HE indicate what he wants?

Answer: He just has to open his mouth and ask... (I got this one too. In my opinion the bonus was the easiest out of them all!!) did you do???

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Don't Worry Baby! I'll Save You!

As many of you read HERE (that's a link even though you can't tell) my children are very protective of their baby sister. Well, yesterday my family finally saw Ratatouille for the first time. It was actually a pretty cute movie.

Last night, right after we had put Kyle to bed, we heard him calling
"Daddy! Daaaaaaddy!! Will Ratatouille come and get me while I am asleep tonight??" Haha. We found this amusing. We explained to him that it was a movie and that we had no rats in the house and he would be fine. (I neglected to tell him that it was, indeed, very possible for rats to come into the house. I didn't want to freak myself out too much either!)

So then, this morning the kids were all in the family room doing Bella Dancerella (A dancing "game" of sorts. And YES, even my boys do it. Kyle is actually pretty excellent at it!) and I was in the kitchen making breakfast. I looked up and saw Kyle frantically grabbing the pieces of cardboard that had come out of my box of beautiful pans that I had acquired yesterday (seriously, these pans are sooooo amazing!). Evan was standing over by Alaina and had our little pair of yellow binoculars out. I watched for a minute to see exactly what the two of them were doing. Kyle would grab a piece of cardboard and run it over and set it up near Alaina, who was sitting in her bumbo seat (Yes, I know they were recalled. Don't worry, it's been taken care of!). I think he actually broke a sweat running all over like a little mad man. Eventually he had an entire wall set up around her.

Evan sat there beside her peering through the little yellow binoculars. Finally, I asked "Hey you cute little psychos. What in the world are you doing??"

Kyle's reply was priceless. "I don't want any Ratatouilles to come bite her tiny toes off, so I gave her a wall to keep him away." And then Evan added "Yeah, and I'm watching so I can yell if he comes here. Because I am a big boy" (He is in the "OBSESSED with proving to everyone that I am a big boy" phase right now).

Ok, well, I guess that makes perfect sense to me. Alaina sure did seem to be enjoying herself, so I went about my business and let them keep on keepin' on.

It is nice to know that they love her and want to take care of her...well, at least in between their assassination attempts, that is.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Photohunt: HOT

(2 posts in one day!! Does that count for one of the days that I missed?? :))
Here is my photo for this week. The theme is Hot. I figured none of my other photos fit this theme quite as well as this picture that I have of Old Faithful. Yellowstone is such an amazing place and I hope to be able to get there again sometime soon.

Just Call Me Crazy

Bummer! I guess the whole NaBloPoMo thing didn't work out so well for me. Oh well, life goes on! :) That's why I didn't "officially" jump on the bandwagon to begin with.
We are doing fine here. We have had a crazy couple of days. Crazy. Today that word took on a whole new meaning for me. I have mentioned, quite a few times, my love for shopping. I have to admit that I absolutely love Black Friday. It is one of my favorite days of the year.

I am sure that some of you find it insane to get up at the butt crack of dawn, stand in a massive line, fight the crowd to get into the store, fight the crowd to find the item you are looking for that somehow has managed to be put on a display in the isle on the opposite side of the store than normal, to then stand in a massive line again to spend lots of money on things that, not only do your children not need, but will only make your home more cluttered than it already is. Well, you are right. It is insane. And I absolutely LOVE it!! There is something very exciting to me about searching through the ads to find the great deals and then getting up LONG before the rooster crows to get some shopping done!

It started last night when my sister, Tracy, and I spread ourselves and about 354 pages of ads out across my family room floor and started putting together our game plan. The game plan is a VERY important part of the day after Thanksgiving shopping. We flipped and sorted and circled everything in the ads that we could conceivably want to try to get. We decided what stores we wanted to hit and in what order we needed to go to them. She spent the night at my house so we didn't waste precious time trying to pick each other up or meet up somewhere. We said our good nights and headed to bed.

We decided that Kohl's would be our first stop. There was a set of pans that I wanted to get from there....when we got to the store I snapped a quick photo of the clock...

Yup, that's AM! We wanted to be there right when the doors opened. (I wanted the pans, but wouldn't have been heartbroken if I didn't get them, otherwise we would have been in line MUCH earlier than that) While in the store I saw a mom pushing a double stroller with two small, sleeping children in it. Now, that is some shopping devotion! I think she probably gets the award for the craziest shopper of the day. :)When it comes to shopping, Tracy and I are pros. We were in and out of Kohl's and back in the car (headed to get in line at Toys'R'Us) by 4:15.

As we were getting out of the car and heading to the line that was forming at TOYS'R'US I noticed that there was a lone cart sitting in the cart corral by where we were parked. SCORE!!! For those of you that have braved these crowds before you know that unless you get to the store REALLY, REALLY, REALLY early there is a slim chance that there will be a cart left by the time you get to the entrance of the store. We snagged the cart and headed for the line.

I love listening to and talking to the other crazies that are in line at 4:30 in the morning. There was an older man that was in line, alone, standing right behind me. He kept peering over my shoulder as to say ""Hey! I'm lonely. Can I join in your conversation??" So, I stepped off to the side a little and he started talking to us. He was obviously a rookie shopper. How do I know this? Well, at one point in the conversation he said "Do you think they will open the doors early since there are so many people here already?" Awww, cute, huh? My reply was "Ummm, no way. Those people inside are not looking forward to what is about to hit them. They're gonna keep us out here as long as possible." At least we are in Florida so it was nice and warm outside, even that early. I was in a t-shirt. :)Just FYI, this is what a line looks like at 4:30 in the morning....

We each had a list of things we wanted to try to find from this store. So, when the line was moving forward and we got to the door we stuck our hands together and yelled "BREAK!" and took off in separate directions. I was so glad I had the cart. I ended up with everything from my list (a total of 9 items) but they were all big and I still had to carry one of them while trying to push the cart through the sea of people. I do have to say that TOYS'R'US was not very organized. It is too long of a story to try and write here, but let's just say it involved a "wall" of large, boxed TVs that was most likely a fire hazard, a useless employee and a scary line dictator.

We were in and out of TOYS'R'US and back in the car and headed over to get in yet another line at Target by 5:20. I avoided getting a cart there. Getting through the toy section at Target is a lot like being in a mosh pit. If you aren't good at dodging flying elbows, it isn't the place for you. I can't tell you how many people ram the back of your ankles with their cart trying to shove and push their way to whatever toy they are trying to get their hands on. It's a friggin' TOY people!! (Of course, that is easy for me to say because I got everything I wanted from Target too!!!)

By 6:12 we were back in the car. That has to be a record!! From there we headed to Staples. My sister wanted to try and get a navigation system for her car. We knew it would be a long shot because we weren't there at 6 when they opened. We walked into the store and had to push our way through a line that had started forming at the photo center and had already "snaked" back and froth across the store 3 times. We found a man that was working back in the technology section.
"Do you have any of these left??" Tracy asked as she pointed to the picture in the ad.
"You see that big, long line that is forming at the photo center?" he said. "Good luck to you!" and he flashed a smile and walked away. We left.

Skip ahead to......

By the time it was just after 8 we had gone to 6 different stores and had eaten breakfast. We were crashing pretty hard by now. I had been shopping for longer than I had slept the night before! So, we decided to head home.

There is just something about this day. I love the hustle and bustle of the crowds and hearing the Christmas music playing in the stores (up until this day it is just annoyingly early to hear any sort of Christmas music!) and getting some amazing deals and talking to new people and I get some sort of rush out of fighting the crowds and coming out victorious. So, to all you fellow crazies out there:
I hope you had a fun filled day of long lines, great deals and hopefully no black eyes or broken bones!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

HaHa! Made You Laugh

Here are a few CLEAN Thanksgiving jokes for you all to enjoy. Share them on Turkey Day with your families and friends while stuffing your face!! :) Do you have a good one? Share it with me!

What did the mama turkey say to her naughty son?
If your papa could see you now, he'd turn over in his gravy!

Asked to write a composition entitled, "What I'm thankful for on Thanksgiving,"
little Timothy wrote, "I am thankful that I'm not a turkey."

What key has legs and can't open doors?

If the Pilgrims were alive today, what would they be most famous for?
Their AGE

Can a turkey jump higher than the Empire State Building?
Yes - a building can't jump at all

How can you make a turkey float?
You need 2 scoops of ice cream, some root beer, and a turkey

A lady was picking through the frozen turkeys at the grocery store, but couldn't find one big enough for her family. She asked the stock boy, 'Do these turkeys get any bigger?'
The stock boy answered, 'No ma' am, they're dead.'

Who is not hungry at Thanksgiving??
The turkey. He's already stuffed!

What's the best thing to put into a pumpkin pie?
Your teeth!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Happy Birthday Dear Santa

I was sitting on my couch watching The Amazing Race (I DVRed it because I couldn't watch it last night) this morning. All of a sudden this awful smell hits my nose. What in the world is that?? It smells like something died! I stand up and slowly start wandering around the room sniffing here and sniffing there, trying to find a scent trail to track down whatever was causing the horrific odor.

As I headed for the side of my couch the smell got a little stronger and a little stronger. I peeked around and saw a green, child-sized glass sitting back in the corner off to the side of the couch. h, oh. This can't be good! I pulled it out and WHEH!! It was S-T-I-N-K-Y!! It was a glass of old, solidified milk. I have absolutely no idea how long it had been there. Long enough that the liquid had turned to a solid and the smell was strong enough that it was stinking up the entire room. I knew exactly whose it was too. (My children are assigned a color for their glasses. Green=Evan!!) So, I took a deep breath and ran it into the kitchen and washed it down the sink.

I decide if I didn't want to gag and lose my breakfast all over the place I should probably light a candle to help cover the putrid smell of death. So, I did.

I left the room and was in doing some laundry and heard faint singing coming from my living room. Was that my children? What were they singing? I stuck my head around the corner so I could hear a little better. It was all three of my older children. They were singing Happy Birthday. I thought it a little odd because it isn't anyone's birthday. Oh well. They can be pretty weird sometimes, so I just went on with my business.

When I went back into the living room I noticed that the candle was out. Hmmm, odd. Well, because I have 4 small children and am running on very little sleep and my brain has turned to mush I didn't put two and two together. I thought it was strange that the candle was out, but I just lit it again and went back to cleaning.

Evan came up to me and asked me if we were having cake. I told him no. He whined for about 3 seconds and than ran back into the room he had come out of.

A few minutes later I hear my children singing again.
Happy Birthday to you.
Happy Birthday to you.
Happy Birthday dear Santa.
Happy birthday to you.

Santa?? I laughed to myself. Gee, they aren't ready for Christmas yet, are they?? So I walked back into the room to tease them about singing to Santa just in time to see Kyle blowing out the candle I had re-lit! Suddenly it all made sense!

I guess from a child's perspective a lit candle = singing and birthday cake!!

My only question is, why Santa?!?

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Never Smile at a Crocodile.....Or an Alligator!

I wrote this story awhile back in my blog, but decided to re post it. Why? Well, read this first:

When you move to Florida you find yourself surrounded by some interesting wildlife. Well, some interesting, some just plain scary. So everyone knows that there are alligators in Florida. Really big, really ugly, could really eat your child in one bite, alligators.

It was a little amusing to me when we first moved here that I found myself checking under the car each time I got in it to make sure there wasn't one of these creepy looking reptiles under the car waiting to eat me for a snack.

So the other day I was at my mom's house and went out to the car with Jill and Devyn to tell them goodbye. I went to the opposite side of the car from Jill and leaned in over the car seat (which was in the middle seat in the car) to make faces at Devyn while Jill strapped her in. I had been that way for maybe 30 seconds when, much to my horror, I felt something a little wet on my big toe. I started to react and pull myself out of the car (which took me longer than normal since I have a human being taking up residence in my uterus right now) and before I had my head out of the car I felt something bite down on my big toe!!

Needless to say I screamed in terror and jumped back as fast as I could. I looked down, expecting to see an 8 foot alligator charging out from under the car towards my legs. Instead, I saw a tiny, 3 inch, black tail swinging back and forth. I heard the call of a male's voice and looked up to see my mom's neighbor coming towards me calling for his new puppy. That's right. This terror-inducing creature that 5 seconds early had caused me to let out a blood-curdling scream was the neighbors 3 month old puppy (about the size of a rabbit).

Jill and I got a good laugh out of it. Hey, never in my life have I claimed to be a brave person. :)

Ok, so that was the post.
I had a bunch of people comment/email me about how funny/cute this story was. Mostly those were people who DON'T live in Florida or anywhere else where alligators roam freely. Well, the other day I went to the bus stop to get my daughter and there was a visitor waiting there.

Not so funny when you realize it COULD have been an 8 foot alligator, huh?!?!

Needless to say, I have been looking under my van again every time I have to go anywhere.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

PhotoHunt: I Love _____

I love baking! It is amazing to me how relaxing it is to go into the kitchen, throw a bunch of stuff into a bowl and have it turn into something delicious! Here are a few of the cakes I have made for birthdays lately...

Friday, November 16, 2007

A Close Second

Yesterday my sister didn't go to work. She came over to spend the day with us and brought my niece with her. We decided to go pick up Kyle from school and then we had a few errands to run and then we decided to go out to lunch.

So, we all piled into the van and drove over to Kyle's school. We decided she could just wait in the car with all the little ones and I would run in. Obviously it would be MUCH faster that way. When I got back out to the car. She was laughing to herself. I asked her what she was giggling about and she told me a story of the conversation she had just had with my 3 year old while I was inside. It went something like this.

Jill: Hey, now that Mommy is gone I can move into her seat and we will just leave her and Kyle here. Ok?
Evan: NO! We can't leave them here! (getting upset)
Jill: Why not? It isn't too far. They can just walk home.
Evan: (getting even more upset) NO!!!! We can't leave. You can't drive Mommy's car. She will be mad.
Jill: No, she won't be mad.
Evan: Yes! Yes she will be mad if you take her car unless it is broke.
Jill: Ok, well I was thinking I could get into her seat and we could go and get some ice cream.
Evan: (short pause) OK!! Let's go get some ice cream!!

Tossed aside for some ice cream. Oh well, at least I came in a close second.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Why Didn't I Go To Target??

Today was one of those days that seemed like it would drag on for a week! I am still so tired from all my children having this nasty cold that they just keep passing back and forth like it's a bag a freaking candy! Go away already!
There was a silver lining in the day when my husband showed up home from work at about 2. He went and got Mikaily off the bus so I wouldn't have to. Then I hopped in the shower so I could get ready to go do some shopping. I had to go buy MORE clothes for my children. They were complaining about their ankles being cold in the morning. Picky picky. So, I figured I either needed to go buy them some pants that were the proper length or I needed to try to get my hands on some legwarmers.

So I was doing my hair and I hear my husband helping Mikaily study for her spelling test she has tomorrow. (Pretty sweet, right? That was one less thing I would have to do tonight!!) So I am putting gel in my hair (I have pretty curly hair and it is easiest to just stick some gel in it and let it dry and get all big and fluffy. You know how most women use shampoos and stuff to get more volume?? Well, I need a shampoo that will flatten mine!! Wait, this is not where this post is supposed to be headed.....back on track now) So I am putting gel in my hair and I hear my husband giving Mikaily a mock test.....

Through. We went through a tunnel. Through.
Strap. You strap yourself in to the car when you get in. Strap.
Clearing.(long pause) I can't think of a sentence that has the word clearing in it.
I chuckled a little. Ok, well maybe more than a little. He is so cute.

So I got myself ready and headed out for the mall. I love to shop. In fact, I may go as far to say that I am IN LOVE with shopping. Shopping, for anything from clothes to furniture to a car, makes me happy. Just to clarify.....There is one exclusion to this rule. I do NOT like grocery shopping!!

So I am on my way there and I get stopped at a red light....and then another.....and yet another. UGh! I'm not going to let that ruin my trip. So, while I am sitting at the 3rd red light the woman sitting in the passenger seat in the truck beside me flings open her door and and proceeds to hurl all over the ground. My immediate reaction is to reach over roll up my window. If this is some sort of super flu she has I do not want it to go flying through the air and land in my nose!! (I know, a little odd, but you never really know, ya know??)

So I continue on, trying to get the mental picture of the stranger losing her lunch out of my head! I get to the mall and head inside. I was not more than 20 steps inside when a women pops out in front of me, seemingly coming out of nowhere.
"Would you like to try a sample??" and she holds up a tiny cup with a little white blob of something or another in it.
"Ummm, no thank you." I was a woman on a mission. Bring on the baby clothes!!

I continued on and was walking down the hallway when a little man steps into my path.
"Are those your real nails?" he asks as he points to my fingers.
I smile and nodded, even though I wanted to say "No! I used some pliers and ripped these off of the old lady in the parking lot. Super glue works wonders!!" I walked around him and headed for the next store.

Before I could get there a petite young woman with beautiful, long hair asks "Can I ask you a question?" I said "No thanks!" and kept walking even though I should have said "Well, ya kinda did already, didn't you?"

I did my shopping and headed back down the hallway towards the end of the mall where my van was parked. The long haired beauty steps towards me, yet again, and says "Can I show you something about your hair?" I looked over and saw that she was selling Corioliss flatirons. I already have one. So, I say to her
"No thanks. I actually have one of these."

"Oh yeah, which kind do you have?" said like she didn't believe that I REALLY had one.
I rattled off the model type. She looked at me, cocked her head to the side a little bit, and with some disgust in her voice said "Then why don't you use it?"

OH NO SHE DIDN'T!! She was lucky I only had clothes in the bag I was carrying or I would have whacked her pretty little head with her perfectly styled hair right off her shoulders! I hope she burned herself while she was straightening her hair this morning!!!!

I just smiled and kept walking while mumbling a few choice words under my breath. Sheesh!!! No wonder I shop at Target! The only people you have to avoid there are the ones trying to get you to sign up for the Target Card at Christmas time.

I think maybe sometime I will take a suction dart gun with me and every time one of the salespeople try to stop me I will shoot a suction arrow smack dab in the middle of their forehead! Maybe if I do that enough I will get a reputation for being "the scary suction cup lady" and they will all cower when they see me coming. Muh-wah- haha!! Woah, ok that took a scary turn there for a second.

So anyways. Despite the rude salesgirl and the strange blob of white stuff I enjoyed my shopping. I got some great deals and my children will now have roasty toasty ankles! What more could a child ask for???

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

You Look Fantastic!!

I read a funny newspaper article recently about the rude questions/comments that pregnant women must endure. It included a "guide" on how to talk to pregnant women. It made me laugh, so I figured I would share. I don't have the actual article, but it went something like this....

Instead of saying "Woah! You are really huge! Are you sure you aren't having twins?" (I actually was asked this more than once with my last pregnancy)
Try saying "Wow!!! You look fantastic!"

Instead of "Geez! You are STILL pregnant?!? You look like you are about to pop!"
Try saying: "Wow!!! You look fantastic!"

Instead of "Awwww, you look so tiny. There is NO WAY you are that far along."
Try saying: "Wow!!! You look fantastic!"

Instead of saying "Can I touch your belly?"
Try saying "Here, would you like a place to sit down?"

Instead of just reaching out and rubbing a pregnant belly
Try rubbing your own because you have absolutely no excuse to be that way!!

Instead of saying "Are you really going to name your child that??"
Try saying: "Wow!!! You look fantastic!"

Instead of saying "Boy, do I have a horrifying labor story to tell you!"
Try saying: Nothing

Instead of saying "Man, I tore like nobody's business!"
Try saying: See answer above

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Easy Way Out

I am trying to keep up with this NaBloPoMo thing, but I currently have 3 sick children and I am running on about 4 hours of sleep. So, I decided to take the easy way out and just post a few of my favorite quotes. Read them all, just skim them, or don't read any. I am going to bed now!

"The hardest years in life are those between ten and seventy." -Helen Hayes

"I refuse to think of them as chin hairs. I think of them as stray eyebrows." -Janette Barber

My second favorite household chore is ironing. My first being hitting my head on the top bunk bed until I faint." -Erma Bombeck

"A man's got to do what a man's got to do. A woman must do what he can't." -Rhonda Hansome

"I'm not going to vacuum 'til Sears makes one you can ride on."
-Roseanne Barr

"I'm not offended by all the dumb blonde jokes because I know I'm not dumb....and I'm also not blonde." -Dolly Parton

"If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning." -Catherine Aird

"Mothers of teenagers know why animals eat their young." - Author Unknown

"I want my children to have all the things I couldn't afford. Then I want to move in with them." - Phyllis Diller

"My mother's menu consisted of two choices: Take it or leave it." -Buddy Hackett

"You don't really understand human nature unless you know why a child on a merry-go-round will wave at his parents every time around - and why his parents will always wave back." -William D. Tammeus.

"Raising kids is part joy and part guerilla warfare." -Ed Asner

"People who say they sleep like babies usually don't have them." -Leo J. Burke

"One thing they never tell you about child raising is that for the rest of your life, at the drop of a hat, you are expected to know your child's name and how old he or she is." -Erma Bombeck

Monday, November 12, 2007

Silence Is Golden

For those who are visiting for the first time. I have 4 children. One was at school. The other three, well............

Shhhhhhhhh, silence is golden!! hehe

Sunday, November 11, 2007

8 Random Things About Me

I was tagged by BALDWINS GIRL to do a meme. I normally try to avoid these things because it seems like once you do one you get sucked into some sort of meme vortex. But, since there seems to be a decent number of new people reading my blog that don't know a whole lot about me, I figured it might be fun to share some extra little things about myself.

Here are the rules. When tagged, you must link to the person who tagged you. Then post the rules before your list, and list eight random things about yourself. At the end of the post, you must tag and link to eight other people. So, here goes...

8 random things about me:

1. I am related to Lady Godiva. Maybe that is why my children think we live in a nudist colony and run around without any clothes on all the time!

2. I refuse to watch the movie The Princess Bride because it gives me nightmares. My name is NOT Inigo Mantoya. I did NOT kill your father. Please DON'T prepare to die!!

3. When I was a teenager I punched my BFF while we were camping. I don't remember exactly why. Probably because I was a teenage girl and I was camping.

4. I was 20 when I had my first child. She was 2 months early and we thought we might lose her. She was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy when she was 2 and wears a brace on her right leg and to me, she is perfect.

5. I hate fish. I despise them. I don't swim with them. I don't cook them. I won't eat them. I don't even like to talk about them. I avoid bridges because if the bridge collapses and I survive, I will have to swim amongst the fish to get to safety. Ick!

6. When I was a child everyone at school called me "Val." One of the boys in my 3rd grade class decided it would be funny if, instead of calling me "Vowel," he called me "Consonant." It stuck and up until the day we graduated high school that is what he called me.

7. I have never had an alcoholic drink. Ever. (Don't bother to comment and ask if I have tried a sip of this or a taste of that. I haven't. )

8. I LOVE to make others laugh, but I'm content if I just make myself chuckle. :)

Ok, so now I am going to tag 8 others. Some I know well, some not so much. Do it if you like. (The names are linked even though you can't tell. The links show up in blue and that is the color of my background)

1. Hey, It's Jude
2. Burnt Cookies
3. The Life Of Tracy
4. My 5 Little Monkeys
5. The Cochran Clan
6. Mom Of The Year...Not
7. Life Needs A Hefty Bag
8. Anyone else who has some random facts they feel like sharing!!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Photohunt: Flexible

Flexible: (adjective) bending and snapping back readily without breaking.
I believe she fits this definition to a tee!! (I promise I am not going to use a picture of my baby every week. But when I saw the theme was flexible I knew my photo needed to be of her!!)

Friday, November 9, 2007

My Fabulous Bag

This is my diaper bag....

Isn't it pretty? I LOVE this bag. I want to marry this bag (That is if I wasn't already married to a wonderful man. Love you sweetie!!) It is red. It is shiny. It is youthful. It is eye-catching. It is, in a word, FABULOUS!!! It is everything I want to be. Ok, well I don't want to be red. That would probably mean I had a really bad sunburn. Been there, done that. Not going back, thank you very much. Well, and I guess I don't want to be shiny either. In fact, I pay good money for cleansers to keep me from being shiny. But you get my point. I hope.

So, this amazing bag of mine is impressive in more ways than one. It still looks marvelous from the outside after being carted around everywhere I go and it is big enough that it can hold all the crap that I needlessly cart around with me. See....

The contents of my bag consists of:
3 pens (1 that didn't work)
1 UN SHARPENED pencil (maybe I could poke someones eye out if they tried to mug me..??)
3 stickers (2 were transformers and one was veggie tales)
2 things of lip gloss
1 tube of chap stick...cherry flavored, of course.
1 coconut lip butter (from The Body lip stuff EVER!! Only problem is it tastes so good I usually just lick it off as soon as I put it on!! and can you tell I came form a cold climate?? A girl can never have too many moisturizing lip products.)
1 watch (That never gets worn because it just becomes a toy for my baby and then my wrist ends up covered in baby slobber)
1 rattle (Sassy rocks!)
1 small toy dog
61 cents (see, mugging me would be a mistake. You would end up with 61 cents and only one eye)
1 hair clip (the big claw kind. I am not sure why I have this. I don't even use this kind of hair clip!)
3 rubber bands (essential for the "baby likes to yank the hair out of my head" phase of you baby's life)
3 kids games
some cheese and peanut butter crackers
1 bottle nipple and a 2 oz bottle of premade formula (even though my baby drinks double that)
1 electronic 20 questions game (I LOVE this little thing. Very handy for waiting in the doctor's offices)
1(?????) plastic link (don't ask me what I was expecting a child to do with 1 link)
2 pacifiers (neither of which were in containers so they are both covered in "bottom of your diaper bag" crumbly stuff....kinda makes it pointless to have them)
a PLETHORA of old receipts (mostly from Target...can I get a hoot hoot??)
1 crinkly baby book
2 baggies stuffed full of wipes (Yup, 2. One for changing diapers and one because I am an experienced mom and know that in the course 1 trip to the grocery store you can use wipes approx. 32 times... i.e. wiping shopping cart, wiping little hands after they run their fingers down the side of the dirty car in the parking lot, wiping faces after eating free samples of BBQ chicken, wiping off baby spit up, wiping off my hand after catching the BBQ chicken sample that was being spit get my drift.)
5 diapers (4 in my baby's size and one for my niece when I have her)
1 travel size bottle of lotion
1 small bottle of water...half empty...or shall I say, half full :)
an empty tic tac container *shrugging shoulders*
1 box of crayons (cause you never know when you are going to need to color something!!)
an old grocery list
1 bib (at least it was clean!!)
my wallet
1 old man finger puppet
1 thing of dinosaur flip cards (my 5 year old is wacky over dinos)
2 easy reader books
and last, but certainly not least, a bag of jumbo sized jet-puffed marshmallows (cause ya never know when you're gonna need something to bribe the kids with!!)

You'd think I would have better biceps. Oh well. C'est la vie.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

One Of These Things Is Not Like The Others

I was walking through my kitchen the other day and I looked into my pantry and happened to notice something that didn't seem quite right.....can you spot it? (And NO, it isn't that my pantry is all messy and disorganized!!!!) Look closely......

Did you find it?? It's up towards the top......kinda left center. See it? Can you tell what it is???

It's a friggin' shoe!! Somehow Kyle's shoe managed to park itself on the very top shelf of the pantry. Good gravy what have I gotten myself into?? This was the same day the boys decided to "decorate" the walls with markers (good thing I am a smart mommy and only buy washable...thank you crayola!), Kyle convinced Evan to try to eat a piece of paper and he choked on it and threw up, Mikaily fell while running on the tile floor with socks on (something I have told her NOT to do at least a thousand times!!) and busted up her elbow (we thought she might have broken it...but we lucked out this time), the boys poured out an entire bottle of elmers glue and painted my table with it and Alaina peed all over the carpet.

But the good news is....I just saved a bunch of money by switching my car insurace to Geico!!! *sigh*

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

The Many Faces Of Alaina

Today, my baby girl is 5 months old! I can't believe 5 months has gone by! It seems like just yesterday she looked like this.....

Today, she looks like this....

I know, isn't she just the cutest thing you've ever seen?? (One of my best qualities is that I am a humble mommy)
She is such a magnificent baby. She gives her smiles away freely and when she smiles, she doesn't just smile with her lips, she smiles with her whole face. She loves it when I give her lots of kisses on her neck. One of her favorite things to do is sit on my lap when I am typing and pound on the keys to drive me nuts. h jv ghnh,bhfbgv gbbyv c3ftrrrrrez ---------- See, she's already a little blogger!! I'm so proud! She deals with her brothers and their assassination attempts very well. (That's a whole other post!!) She has learned to get her point across through facial expressions. Like, when her brothers are acting all psycho to her, she has learned to shoot them the, "You talkin' to me??" look.......

She has gotten REALLY good at the "But don't you love me??" look (check that one out 5 posts down if you haven't already).
Let's not forget the "Are you serious??" look...

The ever popular "Is this my good side?" look......

Here is her "No pictures, please!" look....

And last, but not least, is the "Man, life is GOOOOD" look......

My adorable little Alaina, the world is a much better place with you in it.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

My Children Think They Are Rhinos!!!

Apparently, my children think they are rhinoceros...rhinoceroses......rhinoceri..?? What the hey is the plural form of that word??? Let's just go with Rhinos!!

The other day we were all sitting in the family room and I saw a mosquito flying around. ICk! I hate those little disease infested pests. Actually,they aren't so little here. They thrive on the warm temps and during rainy season they are EVERYWHERE!!! Including my family room and I swear they grow to the size of your head!!!! And I am one of those people that they seem to LOVE. I read once that they are more attracted to certain people's body odor (I promise I use deodorant and shower regularly!!!)and unfortunately I passed the "MMMMMMMMMM!! You smell scrum-diddly-umptious!" gene on to my oldest child. Sorry Mikaily. We always end up with 10 times more bites than anyone else. So anyways. I was like "UGH!! I see a freakin' (that's my version of swearing) mosquito!!!!" Before I knew it, Kyle was like "AHHH!! Don't let it bite my little cutie!!" (that is what he calls Alaina, the baby)

They ran over to her and started to "circle the wagons." It made me think of a crash (Did you know that is what a group of rhinos is called?? I know, impressive, right??) of rhinos circling their babies when they sense a threat. It was so sweet.

So, being a true blogger, I grabbed my camera and snapped a picture. That was, of course, after I smashed the smithereens out of the stupid mosquito.

Monday, November 5, 2007

B is for Boobie

I got up to take Mikaily to the bus stop this morning only to realize it was COLD outside!! Now when I say cold, I mean it was about 55 degrees out. But considering that only a few days ago we were still swimming here, 55 was a shock to the system! I scrambled to find her clothes that would be suitable for the cool morning, but not turn her into a roasted peanut by the afternoon. I grabbed a pair of jeans, a t-shirt and her little white cardigan. Luckily she is pretty skinny, so the jeans from last season buttoned but, ummm, they were kinda short.

So, after I sent her off on the bus in her high waters, I decided I should get my 3 others (my preschooler didn't go to school today)dressed and head off to Target to do some clothes shopping. It was amusing because the clothing section was PACKED from all of the other mothers that had procrastinated their "fall" clothes shopping.

For those of you who don't know me, I need to give you a little bit of background. I call Kyle, who is now 5, my "boobie baby." He nursed until he was 19 months and I think the only reason he weaned was because I was about ready to pop with my next child. I love nursing. I support breastfeeding. However, I never imagined I would breastfeed a baby THAT long. I have nursed none of my others past 6 months. So, why nurse Kyle so long?? Well, he was a boobie baby. He LOVES boobs. He loves touching them, he loves looking at them, he loves talking about them, I wouldn't be surprised if he dreams about them. When he gets hurt, I have to keep him from trying to lift my shirt up to snuggle with my boobs. At about 3 years old I had to start watching him like a hawk when he would sit on another females lap, because he would try to stick his hand down her shirt and "feel her up." He once spent 30 minutes staring at an article in a magazine about 50 different types of on real models included. When he was 4 his Sunday school teacher once told me he pulled his shirt up and showed her his boobs and then asked if he could see hers. I keep telling my husband, who thinks it's cute now, it won't be so cute when Kyle is 16 and the principal calls us because he is trying to get the girls to show him their boobs during gym.

So today in Target we were perusing the baby girl clothes and there was a very pregnant woman there. She was VERY curvy, if you get my drift. I bet you can guess where this story is headed. Unfortunately I was busy ogling over all the adorable clothes and didn't notice her before Kyle did. Rookie mistake.

"Hey mama!! Look at her. She is having a baby."
"Ohhh, yes, she is having a baby, isn't she?" I replied. I KNEW as soon as I looked at her and saw all her curviness and her, what I would consider inappropriately, low-cut shirt I was in trouble.
"Is her baby going to eat boobie??" (that's what he calls breastfeeding)
"Well, I'm not sure if she will. That is a private decision for her to make. Remember what I've told you about being rude??" At this point I was holding my breath and trying to usher my children quickly in the opposite direction and PRAYING the conversation would stop there. No luck.
"Her boobs are big like yours. Does she have milk in them?"
"She probably does. Mommies make milk in their boobs when they are getting ready to have a baby. But Kyle, what have I told you about staring at boobs?"
I looked over at the poor woman and she was not-so-convincingly pretending to not pay any attention to us. She kept her eyes fixed on the rack (Haha....I said rack) of clothes.
At this point I was now forcefully shoving my children in the opposite direction, as Kyle is saying loudly, "But, I LOVE boobies!"

This poor, poor girl. She innocently came to the store to do some (obviously last minute)shopping for her soon to be little bundle of joy and got a very realistic glimpse into what motherhood will be like 5 years down the road. I don't think I remember reading in any of the parenting books about how to handle your boob obsessed toddler.

I have said for a few years now I think they should send small groups of teenagers to spend a week with me. It will be the best form of birth control anyone could expose them to!!

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Ok, so I know I said I was going to post something as often as I could this month, but, umm, well, the Amazing Race is on, so I gotta go!! :) More tomorrow!!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Sit, Fido. SIT!

I went to the grocery store tonight. I don't like having to go to the grocery store in general, but I HATE when I end up having to go on a Saturday. I don't like that I have to stand in line to walk down the isles. Plus, it seems like I always end up being behind the group of 6 adults shopping together that think they need to walk shoulder to shoulder and stop and look at EVERYTHING they pass. Come on! Some of us don't have 2 hours to stare at the jar of SMUCKERS Goobers peanut butter AND jelly and try to figure out how they get both of them into the same jar so neatly. Move over to the side or I may just have to amputate your feet with the front of my cart!!

Plus they never seem to have everything I need. That means that 3 days from now I am going to have to venture back out to the store for 1 or 2 things and end up buying 15 because they are on clearance and I walked past them. I am a sucker like that. Hey! You never know when you are going to need a 4 ft long gray wig or an extra bag of kitkats (even though you already have 11 pounds of candy sitting in your pantry!!) It's on clearance!!

I also always manage to end up in the checkout line that has the cashier that is a Chatty Cathy. I don't really care that you are named after your mothers best friends cousin. I don't care that you called the psychic hot line to get advice about your non-existent love life. Please don't share with me that you have a tickle in your throat and have been hacking up a lung while you are handling the food I will be feeding my family this week. I don't care that you haven't had a cigarette yet because your boss hasn't let you have a break. And PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do not talk to me about how bad your cramps are because Aunt Flo is visiting!!! Less talk, more scan please. Ever heard of a blog?? You can vent on it! Try it sometime.

So the icing on my cake this evening actually happened when I first got to the store. I was soooo excited when I got to the parking lot and found a super duper close spot. SCORE!! I pulled in and noticed that the car parked on my driver's side had a teenage girl sitting in the front seat and a large dog in the backseat. The window was rolled down a couple inches in the back, but the dog didn't seem to be paying any attention to me. The girl looked over at me and smiled friendly. I didn't think twice about hopping right out. I love dogs. I have a big dog.

So, I got out of my car and took a step when "WOOF!!!" The dog lunged towards me, barking loudly. Now, there was no way this dog (that was roughly the size of a small horse)was fitting out that barely cracked window. Nevertheless, my reaction was to jump back, slamming myself into the side of my van, and screaming like, well, screaming like a dog the size of a small horse was lunging at me! I scooted out and to the back of my van and took a minute to regroup. I looked over and saw a young couple walking past and giggling at me. I waved and giggled a little back (although I was picturing the dog jumping out the window and heading straight for this bad-mannered couple and imagining them letting out the same horrified scream I had).

So I continued on into the store, still a little shaken but chuckling a little more at myself at this point. I started wandering through some random aisles (as I always do, searching for the aforementioned clearance items) and happened to wander into the aisle with the mirrors in it. As I was walking past the floor length mirrors I happened to catch a glimpse of the back, left side of my body and noticed I was covered in dirty black gunk from when I slammed into my van. PERFECT!!!

So, after having a dog give me a mini heart attack, being laughed at by strangers,walking around for an hour covered in car gunk, being trapped behind the shoppers from you know where, and listening to an annoying cashier tell me her life story, I now have to remember to go get my van washed!!

But, I guess it could have been worse. I could have had a full bladder when the dog jumped out at me. :)

Friday, November 2, 2007

PhotoHunt: Classic

Ok, so here is my first ever Photohunt pic. (You can go here for more info.) As you can see my child has learned very young that she can use her big blue eyes and bottom lip to make the classic pouty face and get exactly what she wants. Pretty smart, huh?

RAS Syndrome

Alrighty, so I guess the month of November is NaBloPoMo. Which I am pretty sure stands for National Blog Posting Month. I guess we, as bloggers, are encouraged to try and post on our blogs everyday in the month of November. Although this sounds great in theory, I fear that I will be reading a fair amount of boring posts this month. hehe

I would love to say that I want to try and do this, but I am not going to set myself up for failure. I will, however, try to blog a little extra. We'll just take it one day at a time.

If you go to the very bottom of my page you will see a a button with a globe that says "Click here" or "Place Pin" or "View my guest map." If you click on that you can put a pin on my map so I can see where everyone is blogging from. Just a fun little something.

OK, so now onto my post. Have you ever heard of RAS Syndrome? RAS stands for Redundant Acronym Syndrome. It refers to the use of one of the words that make up an acronym as well as the abbreviation that stands for that word, thus in effect, repeating that word. Confused?? Just keep reading. This has always been amusing to me. The name "RAS Syndrome" is actually ironic because it is redundant itself. RAS syndrome means "Redundant Acronym Syndrome syndrome." A few other more frequently used examples are:
ATM Machine= Automated Tell Machine machine
HIV Virus= Human Immunodeficiency Virus virus
PIN Number= Personal Identification Number number
SAT Test= Scholastic Assessment (or Aptitude)Test test
UPC Code= Universal Product Code code
VIN Number= Vehicle Identification Number number
HTML Language= Hypertext Markup Language language

It's just something that I have always gotten a little chuckle out of. Hope you do too.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Trick-or-Treat, Smell My Feet!!

Ahhhhh, Halloween. A mother is never more proud than when she sends her child from stranger to stranger prompting them to beg for candy. Trick-or-treat night is such a hectic night. I tried to make myself a little schedule for the day yesterday so that I would know exactly when to do what (like figuring out what time I needed to start making dinner so that I could finish by a certain time so they would have a certain amount of time to eat so I could be starting to get their costumes on by a certain time so I would have them ready for pictures before....etc....etc.... etc....) I realized at about 9:30 in the morning I was already running behind schedule.

We weren't really sure what time the actual trick-or-treating was supposed to start. I looked online and found nothing. I watched news and heard nothing. I asked neighbors who knew nothing. Everyone seemed to be really confused because of the whole time change/no time change thing. Someone told me they were waiting until it was dark out and then taking their children. Yeah, um, that won't work for me. It doesn't get dark until like 8!! If someone would have told me that I wouldn't have had to buy any costumes because my children turn into little monsters on their own if they are up past 8.

So we decided at 6:30 we would go out. We looked up the street. No one else was out. We started knocking on doors and no one was answering. Ugh! So we found a game of hopscotch that someone had drawn on the sidewalk and hung out and played for awhile. Finally at 7 we started seeing other people out and about and started our quest for massive amounts of sugar...yet again.

We had an unusually large number of people that wanted to take pictures of our children. We moved here from Ohio not too long ago and I don't ever remember people taking pictures of my children in the past. Is this something that is normal?? I didn't want to be like "Well, I don't mind if my children take candy from you, creepy old man, but please don't take their pictures."

It was pretty hot (and when I say hot I mean there was a good amount of sweating involved) and the mosquitoes were EVERYWHERE!!!!! I had no idea how big those suckers (no pun intended) could be until I lived in a hot, humid climate during rainy season. But all in all we had a pretty good time. We ended up with a plethora of candy. Actually it was 11 pounds of candy to be exact....we weighed it. hehe