Friday, June 24, 2011

Mother and Wife of the Year -Offers Moving Tips.

My Moving Tips

1. If in doubt, throw it out. (preferably when the kids aren’t looking)

2. Pack a lot of things in see-through garbage bags, this way if you want to throw something out, you can tell the kids, you are PACKING it, not throwing it away. (throw in a good DUH and roll of the eyes for a convincing performance.)

3. Caution: If you follow the rule of throwing out what doesn’t fit right now, you may not have much clothing to even move.

4. Use all of the stupid T-shirts your husband wears but you hate, as buffers for the breakables, then toss them with the empty box.

5. Convince your son that his sister’s bed is way better than his so he trades and you don’t have to buy a bed to fit in the new room.

6. Convince the hubby that the people moving in after you NEED all of the curtains – then you don’t have to wash them, iron them and you can get new ones.

7. Convince the hubby the curtains at the new house won’t cover well enough for true intimacy after he tells you new curtains are not in the budget and then you can get new ones.

8. Tell the kids “we are getting a new house” every time they ask you to buy something for them.

9. Tell the kids if they help with the move, the rewards will be amazing.

10. For up to one year after the move, tell the kids, “We have a NEW house”……. every time they ask for something new.

11. Tell the hubby for up to one year, “but I’m so tired from moving.”

12. Don’t let the kids or hubby read your blog.

and maybe get a Uhaul

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Never Say Never....

Do you ever find yourself doing something that you VOW you will never ever do again, yet you do it anyway?
Or go somewhere you VOW you will never go again and yet, you find yourself sitting in the very spot you do not want to be with a mini you on your right shoulder saying: “ I told you so.”

For example, I have a list of restaurants I refuse to eat at ever again: (I’ll spare you the names in case I got the only bad one in the bunch), and any place with bathrooms so disgusting you have to wonder what the kitchen/staff/backroom looks like make the list too.

I have been in a few stores where I am walking around with a much more annoying version of myself saying in my ear:
 “Look at what you have become – you are shopping at (insert worst store ever here) as though it were Bloomingdale's.”
“How did you get to this place in your life??”
“Get out and save yourself,      NOW!!!!"    (My mini-me is an alarmist)

Last night I found myself in that store I vow to never return to every time I'm there.

Not really.  Thought this was funny though!

My girls told me as I walked into the door from work, that they needed to wear their favorite team jersey to Basketball camp tomorrow,  -the last day of a 3 hour for four day’s only camp.

Don’t get all excited that I have daughters who play Basketball.  The cold hard facts are that I am 5’2 and the hubby is maybe 5’6 or 7, and there is more hope of raising a jockey than a Basketball player.
We are also in that group of people who have no particular passion about professional sports WHATSOEVER, so there is absolutely no pressure from us – as a matter of fact we reward the lack of organized sports interest so we don’t have to attend the games. . ...

(Just in case my best followers are freaking out right now, I love a live baseball game, I could sit and watch football in the fall with a bowl of caramel popcorn, I was a huge Brown's fan for all of my college and early adult life (but then the team was sold and I lost all interest) I can kick some butt in a March madness bracket, know enough of the terms and rules not to be considered  a dumb chic, but bull riding and extreme sports are more up my alley.   Soccer, Basketball, golf or consistent watching and knowing players names, wives names and who their girlfriend's are holds no interest for me.)

So camp was an inexpensive way to give the girls something to do for a week out of too many weeks of summer with nothing to do but complain about how bored they are.   (In all seriousness, they love this camp and pathetically can be heard sharing the one basketball we have –(not sure where it came from) dribbling it in the basement on the carpet! Heck, if they master that technique they might be on to something!

But, you will never be able to say,  that I don’t offer the opportunity or deny a request as a Mom to do pretty much anything,  and off we went to find jerseys as though we have a closetful to choose from and are the biggest sports fan family out there.


For three hours wear, even I  have to draw the line. And how do I know that the name on the back is even still on the team or not abusing animals somewhere?

So now I find myself in the discount section of a discount store looking for a T-shirt with a sports team name on it.

Preferably one that could be worn again, so colors do matter. Unfortunately, everything had moved since the last time I was at this store.  The minute I passed an employee pretending to keep herself busy with a pile of hangars I knew I was a glutton but I asked her anyway - I asked  this  very dazed and confused, and I use this term very loosely – "employee", where they hid the sports wear?  She just gave me a blank stare and I think mumbled something, but I can't be sure she was even awake.

Eventually I found myself in a CLEARANCE/clothes that make no sense so throw them here section.  Between the racks I dove. (After leaving careful instructions for the girl's not to do what I was doing.

Before this story goes as long as it actually took to locate two passable shirts, I’ll jump to the part where I chose the self check-out aisle. I chose this aisle because apparently all the other loosely termed employees must have been off enjoying their break somewhere.

Now I have been a cashier before. Granted it was in high school, but I could ring groceries with the best of them.
Self Check out Line though? Forgettabout it. This might actually be considered a sport.

Twenty minutes in and I was sweating, had threatened the lives of my children for touching the bagging area and making the scanner stop working and discarded half of my purchases that refused to be scanned.   I had turned into one of those woman who looked really haggard and mean, so that you feel bad for their kids no matter how annoying they are being. 

Then my card was declined. This is when the volume on the machine got louder and the people in line behind me got closer to check out the loser whose card declines at the discount store. 

Smile - it's for my blog ;)

Clarification: my card was never really declined, the machine must have also been on break or malfunctioned.  I had to turn the brightest  help light in the store on  and the lone cashier who could be ringing me up but instead man’s the self check out lines,  b/c even an ex- cashier can’t make them work right, came over and got my card to work. AFTER I was instructed to rub it on my shirt.
I think the machine is a man, and enjoys seeing women rub their credit cards on themselves.

My girls were in full giggle mode at this point - were no longer of any help to me, and had gone well beyond the point of reason. I heard them hysterically laughing at my inability to operate the machine, and my alarming performance of rubbing a credit card on my body.  I heard them telling each other that this was one job they knew they would not ever want to do.

I'm telling you right now - I will never, not ever, go in the self check out aisle again.

I really hope those blessed shirts they wore for 3 lousy hours today were worth it to them.

Yes, it does look like the cat might be about to start a good cleaning.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Waiting …..Not so Patiently

I am not a patient person. If you had to name some virtues of mine, patience wouldn’t make the list.

As of tomorrow I will have 10 days until the big move. I am not sure I can wait. My brain is on over-drive. I even bought a book to see if I could be distracted. I can’t even stand the thought of sitting down to read it though.

This is coming from the girl who has moved over 13 times. You would think I would be used to it by now. Maybe because the kids are no longer hands-on and I have more brain cells to think/worry/obsess with??

They are patiently waiting for a small porton of a poor version of a slurpy - Note, I am NOT in this picture.

I don’t remember being this excited even though I am certain at some point I was. I feel a little ADD – bouncing from having to do one thing and thinking of ten more, then I forget where I started and pretty soon there are three boxes with one thing in them each in three different rooms and I’m holding a handful of pieces/parts that belong to something but I can’t remember where I put it.

Its important to have a few surprise bags from Target to open when unpacking - OH YEAH, I forgot I bought that!!

Since this is the longest amount of time we have been in one place, we have accumulated a lot more and become pretty disorganized. (Don’t worry – those of you who know me –I know you are laughing right now, YES, I have found many things OUT of PLACE, believe it or not!)

I spent at least an hour sifting through a box of cards, letters, and mementos I found at the top of my closet. Geez, was I dramatic when I was dating the hubby. At some point I must have put the letters I sent to him before he was the hubby in my box of things. How did he ever put up with me?? I had to stop reading them because I was getting embarrassed.

Then I found a box of the kid’s letters to Santa, artwork, cards and various pieces of handmade treasures. When you look back at this stuff and realize they will never be that young, you want to display it all over the house. I do have an idea for some of it though.

This made me feel a little bit better about the mound of hard work just sitting in a closet somewhere.

Since by now you understand what an OCD control freak I can be, I typed up a big note with our new address on it and while we were in the car taking a break, I told the kids to memorize it. Within moments we were all hysterically laughing about the name of our new street. The hubby was relaying how he sounded saying the street name to all of the utilities people and then having to explain himself.


You try saying that one in the middle of an address: (for example: 123 Cheshire St.)

 is it:



or Chesh IRE?

Pretty soon we couldn’t stop trying it in all the different ways with different emphasis and we sounded like a bunch of idiots after awhile. In the middle of the laughing and chanting, I was trying to explain the Cheshire cat and how if you smiled real big and made your lips really thin, you could say Cheshire perfectly. (I know you are trying it right now)

which really made everyone laugh and then every part of our address came out with the CH sound in front of it so we sounding like a bunch of no lipped wierdos.
We will never be able to say the name of our street normally again.

Despite the craziness, disorganization, anxiety and worry, I think we will all remember this time. How could we forget?

Saturday, June 11, 2011

A BED-time Story

As I was trying to fall asleep last night, I got to thinking about, well my bed(s). From the length of this story you will see it took several hours for sleep to actually come.

I guess you can say I have a love/hate relationship with my bed(s). I must have really loved my crib, because I actually remember getting my first bed (that puts me at minimum 4-5 years old??) I recall being in the back of my parents van, laying with my two brothers under the mattress that was propped up on top of us – like the coolest fort ever. My first bed was a double. Yep, that’s kind of how I do things in life – from crib too long to double bed. No in-between stages for me.

I proceeded to fall out of that bed for several years. I can remember my Dad running in to pick me up, sometimes still asleep – but just awake enough to remember him gently placing me back into the MIDDLE of the bed.

I have always been the kind of person who makes their bed the minute they get out of it and can’t leave the house with an un-made bed. Of course I am also the person who doesn’t really move in their sleep, making it extremely easy to make the bed. It all starts with this double bed of mine. I decked that bed out too – pillows, cabbage patch dolls (yep, had a whole collection on display!) my pj’s hidden under my pillow, stuffed animals, you name it. My bed looked …… well it looked like a child’s dream.
The only problem with this bed is that I found myself trapped under it, blocked in on both sides from my brothers, more times than I care to remember. To this day, tight spaces freak me out. (I think they were jealous I had a room all to myself and a big ole bed in it, while they shared a bunk bed until they were over 18.)

In high school, I wanted more room and got every teenager’s dream – a daybed. With a cot-bed underneath. I can remember lying in my bed at night imagining my knight in shining armor saving me from any type of natural disaster. Sometimes my day bed was a boat stranded in the ocean and of course my current heart throb at the time was with me. I am pretty sure Tom Cruise, Rob Lowe and that guy from Sixteen Candles played a role or two.

This would be me and we are floating in the ocean on my day bed. Stranded. ALL. ALONE.

The cot under the daybed followed me to college and believe it or not, the hubby and I had that as our bed until I was pregnant with our first child. YES, you read that right, a COT BED. (we were skinny and in love) Thankfully he worked nights. One night though, he came home to find me half on the floor with my feet in the air because the cot had finally broken and I could not fix it. Having only one other piece of furniture (a mini couch from my parent’s boat) I had nowhere else to go.

So the bed I have now is the bed we bought with wedding money. You’ve seen this bed before – it’s the Queen size Broyhill bed. Can be seen in most romantic comedies near you. Imagine my embarrassment when I went to my bosses’ house to find their child had my same bed. Thankfully I am the non-mover and we have somehow made it work over the years.

Yep it’s a love hate relationship, my bed and I.

The foot of the bed has very pointy edges and I have had a permanent black and blue mark on my upper thigh for years now. We had a kid in the bed with us for at least 3 years each, by time we got them all out and in their own beds. our bed made too much noise for anything interesting to happen in it with kids in earshot. This even AFTER that same boss helped us move and tightened every nut and bolt so hard he announced that no noise would ever be heard – ( yes, that was embarrassing…) and lately this bed does me absolutely no favors in the getting to sleep department.

But this same bed kept me company while I was on bed rest, played never ending games of Mario Party with the kids on a snowy day, while I hand bathed my brand new babies, when the hubby was in the hospital, working the night shift, or delivering newspapers at 3am and I swore I heard a noise just on the other side of it…..

Trust me, the fact that I can write about my bed is simply because the new house has been decorated in my mind more times than I can count and now I am dreaming of inanimate objects, just because.

Don’t let the bed bugs bite……………….

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Cabin

After 15 years, we had finally made it happen. We were moving back home. The home where both the hubby and I grew up, went to school and fell in love. I had imagined being able to move back for so long. I had hated coming home only once a month or for holidays only. Every time we were home I noticed how much more I missed my family, how much greener the grass seemed, there were more hills, even the snow was better and more frequent (right up my alley) I had been craving being back in the country, and living close to the family I hadn’t been with in so long, for so long. (Sure, we left as fast as we could when we were 18, but that tug of home eventually got to us)

In the fifteen years away, the hubby and I had gone to school, worked, married, had three children and made amazing friends and memories, but it was time to move. Once we made the decision, things moved quickly and we found ourselves on a quick day trip having to decide between three houses to move into. It was like the TV show House Hunters, (but we were renting and the choices weren't as exciting, and I did not complain about the little things! )

 In an eight hour trip we chose a log cabin in the woods that we saw for less than thirty minutes. Thirty days later, I had a van full of everything we would need until the moving truck arrived, an 8, 5 and 3 year old. I drove excitedly home, leaving the hubby behind to wrap things up. (He was thrilled to be left with no pillows, no bed, in a freezing cold house because I had shut off the utilities a few days too early - whoops!)

It was early March, snowing and pitch black by 5pm. I pulled into the driveway almost two hours off schedule suddenly panicked by what I was doing. I didn’t remember it being so dark and off the beaten path. Even though I had lived in the area 15 years prior, it felt completely foreign to me. My sister in law was going to meet me with her kids and we were going to spend the night getting the cabin ready for us to live in. She had not seen it yet and was excitedly waiting for our adventure to start. (she really IS THAT NICE)

I decided waiting for her in the car was getting a little odd, so I took the kids out, we trudged through the snow and looked for the key with a flashlight. When walking into the cabin, you walked directly into the main room that is all the living space in one. Without any furniture it seemed massive. The four of us just stood there and looked around – I couldn’t believe how high the ceiling was, and how big the room was. As we got our bearings, still all of us holding hands, (I was scared in that house in the dark being the only one over the age of 10) I heard a small voice say: “Mommy, what is that head coming out of the wall up there?”
Yes, the cabin came with a mounted Deer head. It’s still there to this day. I figured it was worse to take it down and throw it out, plus I was not about to ever touch it. For months, I did a really good job of never looking it directly in the eye. Within ten minutes the kids were over their trepidations and were running all over the cabin.

I love that one of the items I brought in the van was a decorative tea kettle - LOSER

Within hours, we had the house lit up, the kids were settled in make-shift beds, and my sister in law and I tackled every job we could until we dropped dead tired onto air mattresses in the main room. (I knew the fun for her was going to wear off quick so I had to take advantage!)  About an hour into sleep the loudest thunderstorm I have ever heard blew through. I thought for sure the rain was coming into the house with how loud it sounded on the roof, the tall pine trees outside were going to come crashing through any minute and ever ghost or spirit was going to start coming out of the nooks and crannies. Every single time that lightening struck and lit up the room, my eyes were on that damn deer head too.

We tried to to block the Boogey Man from looking in with those curtains like that.....

Eventually we slept peacefully convincing each other we were not scared and everything was fine. ( We kept asking each other if we were OK, should we check on the kids, but neither of us wanted to move off of our air mattress oasis.

For six years we made the most amazing memories in our cabin. I will miss this house that saw the kids go from 3, 5 and 8 to 8, 11 and 14. I had three different jobs, the hubby five. We lost a guinea pig, a few fish and gained two cats. We witnessed ice storms, downpours, blizzards, days without electricity, and massive heat waves.  We camped in the backyard, swam in the store bought pool, played endless hours of SORRY, sat on the deck, and enjoyed a menagerie of Deer, Groundhogs, Turkey, Birds, Snakes, Raccoons, Skunks, and Wolf from our windows.

The cabin on Neal was good to us and will forever be in our hearts.

Critter Spying


Camping in the backyard - yes, we drove there.....

6 years later....

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Hurry and Up! & WAIT.

Have you ever heard the story of Hurry Up! and WAIT?
Mrs. NOW

Hurry Up! is always at least 15 minutes early everywhere she goes. She sets her clock 18 minutes ahead of normal time and then her alarm clock 30 minutes earlier than the time she HAS to get up. She is often heard saying things like: “let’s get the show on the road”, “come on let’s go”, ”wouldyahurryup already”, “I’ve been waiting for hours”, and “what took you so long?”. Hurry Up! is one of THOSE people who slams her mouse up and down to make the computer go faster, decorates for Christmas BEFORE Thanksgiving, and buys schools supplies in July. Hurry Up! wants every holiday, event, milestone, and special day to be here now, and then during the moment she is of course thinking about the next one coming up so she hardly gets to enjoy any of it at all.

WAIT is of course 15 minutes late. So it really helps that all of his clocks are set ahead of normal time – people hardly notice his tardiness. He sets his alarm clock on the dot of one hour before he has to be anywhere and then he hits snooze without worrying about it. He is often heard saying things like: “don’t worry, they’ll wait”, “we have plenty of time”, “there are always 15 minutes of previews”, and “I’m on my way”. WAIT thoroughly enjoys himself all of the time and never looks ahead into the future or worries about it.

& Mr. Later


Both Hurry UP! and WAIT sleep no more than 4 hours a night. The other 2-3 hours are spent thinking about where to put each and every piece of furniture in the new house and imaging the memories that will be made. Hurry UP! wants the move day to just get here already so she can get everything just right and change her name to RELAXED and WAIT is trying to enjoy the last days of living in a log cabin but secretly dreams of re-naming himself NOW.

This is going to be the longest month ever. I wonder if the people I live with can live out of boxes for four weeks without touching a single thing?
 HA! I was having a little daydream for a second there.

An amazing photographer blogger and VERY thoughtful person posted something on her blog that is RIGHT UP MY ALLEY – go check it out:

I better Hurry up and hang out with wait…………………………………….