November 30, 2007

MEMEMEMEMEMEMEMEME!!!! Because I can't come up with anything original right now...

Welcome to the Christmas edition of getting to know your friends.Okay, here's what you're supposed to do, and try not to be a SCROOGE!!! Just copy (not forward) this entire post and paste into a new one that you can post. Change all the answers so that they apply to you.

'Tis the Season to be NICE!

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper mostly, unless it's just to hard to wrap!
2. REAL OR FAKE TREE? Fake, it was just getting too hard for all of us to go and get one. Simpliy, simplify, simplify...
3. When do you put up the tree? The day after Thanksgiving, no matter what!
4. When do you take the tree down? After New Year's
5. Do you like eggnog? Uh HUH!!!
6. Favorite gift received as a child? The year my brother and I got bikes was exciting!
7. Do you have a nativity scene? I have a glass one that all sits on a little mirror.
8. Hardest person to buy for? Most of the men in my family.
9. Easiest person to buy for? All of my kids are TOO easy to buy for!
10. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? An ex-boyfriend got me a VHS tape of the 'New Kids on the Block'....I was never really into them to begin with and didn't get the joke!
11. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail
12. Favorite Christmas Movie? 'A Christmas Story' BABY! 24 hours straight from Christmas Eve to Christmas Day. That makes it feel like Christmas!
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? Depends on the year. I have started as late as the middle of December, and as early as the summertime.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yes
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Everything
16. Clear lights or colored on the tree? Clear on the tree, colored on the rest of the decorations.
17. Favorite Christmas song? 'It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year'
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? STAY HOME!
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? You can't?
20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Angel
21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? The kids MIGHT get to open ONE on Christmas Eve. Otherwise, they all get opened AFTER SANTA COMES!
22. Most annoying thing about this time of year? So expensive..and more things just keep coming up!
23. What I love most about Christmas? That it's everywhere right now!

November 21, 2007

The Romance Continues...

See what I walked in on a few minutes ago?

Hogan and Soccer are quite the pair!

Soccer rubs up against Hogan and even tries to lick him. Hogan still twitches a little, but that could be more AGE than anything.
Here's the video I took shortly after this picture:

Yeah, he's still not quite sure about the whole thing....

November 20, 2007

Just a Quick Update...

...on the status of a couple of our family members: Hogan and Soccer.

We got 'Soccer' the kitty for 4YO when she completed her season of soccer.
"He is black and white like a soccer ball...but we CAN'T KICK HIM."
-4YO's words
So, our Boxer Hogan has never actually met a cat that was not afraid of him. Soccer is not afraid of him. Hogan is beside himself and spent the first few hours Soccer was home just staring at him and shaking violently. Since he's almost 13 years old and basically living on borrowed time as Boxers go, we were a little worried.
While I didn't actually get a video of that, I did get a video of their progress. I'm beginning to think that Hogan actually likes Soccer now! He even looks happy while watching Soccer bounce around and play, which is pretty much all he does when he's not sleeping. You be the judge....

I think this may be the beginning of a beautiful friendship!

November 19, 2007

I've Been Tagged...

I was tagged by SJSFalter to list seven random things about myself. While I am a pretty random person in many ways, it’s so hard to actually think them all up when I sit down to do so.

I’ll try my best, though!

Here are the rules:1 - Link to the person who tagged you and post the rules on your blog.2 - Share seven random and/or weird things about yourself.3 - Tag seven random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.4 - Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.Seven Random Things About Me

1. I have to brush my teeth right before or after I take a shower or I just don’t feel ‘clean.’

2. I have certain things I do in very diligent routines, never wavering from those routines. Other things absolutely CANNOT be routines. I must do my laundry in a certain way and a certain order, but if I have to wipe down that high chair ONE MORE TIME I WILL BANG MY HEAD AGAINST THE WALL.

3. I am afraid that I will turn into one of those ‘hoarders’ like on Oprah when I think of all the stuff around my desk I won’t part with. I just need to get more organized, I think. Downsize and simplify should be my New Year’s resolutions for next year.

4. I absolutely cannot stand Winnie the Pooh. I even posted a blog about it a few months ago. David thinks I need help.

5. I flushed a hamster down the toilet when I was three years old. I wanted him to swim under water and he kept swimming back up. So, I flushed. He did live. He was caught in an air bubble in the trap and my mom was able to pull him out. My cousin never let me play with his hamster again.

6. I can remember my locker combination from the 7th grade, but I can’t remember to make a simple phone call when I have a whole day to do it. I honestly forget things like that, but I can’t forget the phone number of the girl who lived across the street when was in the 1st grade. One of the reasons we eat dinner so late at night (besides the fact that David usually works late and I want us to all eat one meal together) is that I forget to start it until it’s already pretty late. I get distracted way too easily and don’t get my mind back to the things I am supposed to do until way later.

7. I grew up in a house where the kitchen light stayed on all day long. Even when we left the house, that light was never turned off until the last person went to bed. I still get annoyed when David turns ours off early in the evening, but not as annoyed as when he throws all of his dirty clothes right in front of the hamper.

Okay, so I’m supposed to tag 7 people to do this. I’m not really good at tagging people so I will skip this part. If you do, however, read this post and decide to post your own list, let me know!

November 15, 2007

A 1YOism and Placing Blame

See the bow? It's really gawdy and makes her look so sweet. That is how I dress her AND express sarcasm at the same time...

1YO just walked up to me a few minutes ago. She had unwrapped a new roll of paper towels, which I was not aware of. She then took said wrapper and shoved it under her shirt. It took me a minute to understand what she was doing, but she had bunched the wrapper in a way to where it was just sticking out on her chest. As she approached me, she pointed to her chest and said,


I am obviously very aware that children with older siblings tend to grow up more quickly. However, that was a bit shocking just the same. She's not even two yet and I she seems to have come up with that little trick on her own. 4YO was outside playing at the time.

I think she will own a good portion the blame when my hair starts to turn gray and David starts to lose his.

November 14, 2007

The Bad Day, Revisited

This is something I wrote a year or so ago and had posted on my original blogging site. That site is having huge issues and I may lose whatever I don't save. I thought I would share it with all of you, because it's not everyday you can laugh at a story about a dog dying! Hercules was a great dog....a great BIG dog, to tell you the truth! I think about him more and more as Hogan's health slowly deteriorates.

So far...this has NOT been a good month!

Okay! Let me start by saying that we made an appointment to have Hercules put to sleep for this Saturday. In the last week or two, he has lost a lot of weight and wasn't moving around as much. We had started giving him his pain medication to keep him comfortable. We didn't want him to get any worse...but he still had that darn *sparkle* in his eyes!

I guess I should also explain my husband and his love of cable TV. When he built the steel building on the back of our property, he ran cable back there. He wants to be able to watch television when he's working on something in his shop. Whatever! So, when he built that patio cover for the spa, you may remember that he ran cable out there as well! So...we have cable TV in everybedroom, one out to the shop, and one out to the spa. Can anyone else say "OVERKILL???" internet had been acting up (also cable) and I had called Comcast to get someone out here to look at it. They were to be here yesterday between 8 and 12. Not a BAD timeslot, I guess! I KNEW I would be home yesterday to wait for the cable guy. David went out to give Hercules his pain medication and came back in really upset. "Hercules HAS to be put down today," is what he said. He told me that he wouldn't even eat the TRI-TIP he had the medicine in. This dog has NEVER turned down food! (Which explains how he got to weigh 140 lbs in the first place!) In fact, he wouldn't get up and flies were landing on his leg and biting at his wound. It was just bad. He had progressively been getting worse, but the day before we would have sworn that he wouldn't have gotten that bad before Saturday. David even tries to call in sick to work...but they tell him, "Too bad." So, he goes off to work and I start making phone calls. Even if I could get the 120+lbs dog into the back of the truck by myself, I could not fit all of my girls in that truck to take them into town. Besides, (don't laugh, but....) I don't know how to drive a stick shift. STOP LAUGHING! IT'S NOT THAT FUNNY!!! If I cannot find a vet to come out to the house to put him down, I need to find one open late enough so that David can come and get him and take him there AFTER he gets off work.

So, I'm calling around. I guess I should also mention that we were out of milk. It happens, right? There are all SORTS of things the children can eat for breakfast that does not include milk. Unfortunately, my three-year-old begged to differ! She acted as if the world were coming to an end and her heart would just up and STOP if she didn't have milk to pour into her Frosted Flakes! She has her first meltdown before the cable guy even gets here. I put her into "time out" and explain that we will buy milk LATER and there are all sorts of other things she can eat anyhow. Meanwhile, the baby was in the Johnny Jumper in the kitchen and was JUST ABOUT at her limit for that thing! I'm making phone calls as quickly as I can and the cable guy arrives. He starts looking around (after he realizes the signal IS low for my internet) and sees all the different connections we have going on around here. It's not ILLEGAL or anything (we pay a HEFTY cable bill every month...if ANYONE'S stealing, it's THEM!) they would just prefer that THEY install the lines. He's making little comments and asking questions about what my husband was doing with all these lines and pointing out what was causing us to lose our signal. He was actually really nice about it.

When he was on the side of the house where the cable comes in, our boxer "Hogan" was just going nuts! I explained to the guy that he was just a little "on edge" because I think he knew his friend "Hercules" was close to the end. Hercules was still in the middle of the yard in full sun. It was just about 9 am and not really hot YET, so I wasn't worried yet about the heat. Hercules looked around but never got up. Hogan wouldn't go near him and only came out of his dog house when the cable guy got there. I told him I was trying to find someone to put him down that day because he was so bad. Hercules is just laying there, looking around and panting. I turn around to look at what the cable guy was doing, then back around to look at the dogs. I notice Hercules lay his head down on the ground and mention to the cable guy that I wouldn't be surprised if the dog just died right there. Cable guy looks and says, "Ma'am...I don't think that dog is breathing anymore." I go into the pen and...yeah...he had died right then and there. Great. Now, my problem was still finding someone to pick this dog up.

Meanwhile, 3YO was on her THIRD time out (drama queen, for sure!) and the cable guy had driven his van out to the power pole to see what kind of signal we were getting to begin with. He encountered a hornet's nest while on the pole and got a flat tire on his way back into my driveway. (I did later apologize to him for him having to drive under my "black cloud" and share in my bad day!) He then had to call and arrange for someone to come and fix his tire. He continued to work on our reception problem. He kept commenting that he needed to upgrade some of the connections in order to fix it. Great. I call my husband to let him know the dog had died and that the cable repair may cost us because Comcast did not install the lines that were causing the problems. By that point 10YO and 3YO were entertaining 5MO and they were ALL cranky! I find a leash and get the boxer out of the pen with his dead friend. I have 10YO walk him around the yard and little. Then, 3YO has her UMPTEENTH meltdown because I won't let her hold Hogan's leash. He's a good dog, but I didn't want him getting away from her while the cable guy was still there! Baby is crying in the house while I put 3YO in ANOTHER time out for not listening. It was then that 10YO realizes that Hercules is gone and she starts to get emotional. I can't blame her, yet there's too much going on for me to cry with her at that moment. Besides, part of me was really relieved that he wasn't suffering anymore. This was the first day he seemed miserable and I couldn't stand the thought of it!

I start trying to call the animal shelter. For twenty bucks, they will come and pick him up. Line busy. Perfect. I keep trying to redial when my father-in-law calls in on the other line. He starts trying to tell me something. I tell him I can't really talk but will call him back as soon as I can. I get back on the phone and get through to the shelter. They will come and get him. I explain that he is in full sun, by this point, and hope that it makes them hurry. 10YO ties Hogan off in the yard, under a tree. He had a big bowl of water and a great shade tree. I also forgot to mention that his GUMS started bleeding as I got him out of his pen. He has this weird gum tissue overgrowth thing...doesn't hurt him, vet has checked it out, not much we can do. It looks awful, however and his gums are really swollen! And now they're bleeding. GREAT!

Within the hour, I had two Comcast vans AND a tow truck in front of my house, a dead dog lying in the yard, and three crying children in the house. Then, my husband calls (bless his heart) to tell me that Big Dog has a sale on towels. Should he get some, if so how many, and how should he pay for them? I want to hit something.

I'm on the phone with a friend (the one who gave me the number for the shelter) when he called through to ask about the towels. I give him a little update on what's going on and 10YO starts bouncing around saying she wants cable in HER room. She HAS cable in her room. She then says she wants "Comcast" in her room. What the h*ll did she think cable IS???? I tell her that Comcast IS cable and she already has it. She starts to say something else. I scream, "STOP TALKING!!!" and I looked for something throw at her! If my friend hadn't been holding on the house phone while I was on cell phone, I would have thrown it at her! She sees the rage in my eyes and returns to pouting about the dog. I do NOT usually have a bad temper. In fact, I pride myself on how well I suppress my anger most days. This day was a definite exception! If there HAD been alchohol in the house, I would probably have been DRUNK by 11 am!!!

The Comcast caravan leaves (but not before the guy tells me that my husband should stick to "package delivery" and leave the cable connections to him-the one thing I could laugh at on this horrible day!) and so does the tow truck. About an hour later, the animal shelter comes to pick up the dog. I sat for a few minutes, just enjoying the fact that the hard parts were pretty much over. Soon after that, we left the house. I didn't want to be there anymore!

I'm sorry this was so long. I guess it kind of had to be in order for you guys to get a full understanding of my day.

Hercules, we will miss you dearly. You were a great dog and a good friend.

November 13, 2007

More 4YOisms and Some Babbling

I must say that 4YO was in quite the unpleasant mood the other night. Who am I kidding? She's four and those moods come and go quite often!
So, she was pouting or whining about something that was so insignificant that I couldn't even tell you what it was. I told her that she would not get her way by whining and if she was going to continue to throw a fit, she could do it in her room.
Being as she is four and all about the drama, she opted to go to her room. After a few minutes, she started calling for me down the hall. As I answered her, she explained,
"But soccer players don't get in trouble!"
It's 8:22 in the morning. 4YO has just approached me with a big grin on her face and something behind her back.
"Mom, can I pleeeeeeease have hot chocolate? I already found the marshmallows."
Yeah, I think she's new here!
In other news, we are working on getting ready for the holidays to begin. I am excited, overwhelmed, and slightly dreading the holiday season. I LOVE the holidays...don't get me wrong! The way it all begins with Thanksgiving and turkey and...mmmmm! That's when I realize that I really do enjoy cooking. What I don't enjoy is the creative energy it can take to come up with meal ideas on a regular basis with little or no input from my family. They are not quick to offer up suggestions for meals most of the time. However, they are very quick to criticize something about the meal they would have no part of planning.
Thanksgiving is different, though. They are all looking forward to the meal and I pretty much know what they will gush over later. And gush they do! I guess I'm a cook who thrives on compliments. But, who doesn't, right?
Then, we dive straight into Christmas. Christmas music, Christmas shopping,Christmas decorations, Christmas EVERYWHERE! LOVE. IT. The fog rolls in and isn't so bad when you can catch the occasional glimpse of Christmas lights on the houses you pass. Especially with Christmas music playing in the car and the kids and I singing along. This is the only time of year that I can get truly excited about things like that. Normally, I would prefer to hear the radio than the children while driving.
I know, my 'Mother of the Year Award' is bound to arrive any day now!
Seriously, we have a large SUV and my 11YO usually sits in the third row. Her two younger sisters sit in the middle row and are not known for being quiet. 11YO tries her darndest to have long, drawn-out conversations while I'm driving. (Who am I kidding? She will talk anyone's ear off, anytime and anyplace!) It's frustrating to to try explain to her that I cannot hear her well enough to carry on the conversation and focus on the road in front of me. After explaining to her repeatedly that I cannot her her well, I usually just turn up the music and tell her I want to her this song and that she can tell me later about who dropped their pencil in class and who's mad at who because they didn't invite them to play at recess and who put Cheeze-Its down the back of so and so's shirt.
See what I mean? These are not exactly 'heart to heart' discussions!
She's starting to sit in the front seat since she's just under FIVE FEET TALL on EARTH did that happen???? Anyhow, we are having more conversations in the car and it's a lot easier to talk over either the movie the younger two are watching or their fighting....or both.
I guess I'm just at the point in my life where I actually feel 'bad' or like I'm getting away with something 'wrong' when I am driving with no children in the car. In fact, if there's a heaven it's me, Starbucks tea in hand, shopping at Target all by myself. The trip to and from Target is sans rugrats and my favorite songs are playing on the radio. When I arrive at my destination, I get myself and my purse out of the car and walk away-no car seats to unbuckle or any arguments over whether or not 1YO can take her 'ni-night' into the store as well. While in the store, the only thing in the front of the cart is my purse and I can actually put some thought into what I'm buying.
My kids drive me crazy. Aren't they supposed to? One of my oldest and dearest friends is about to have her first baby. I'm so excited for her and I told her that I don't think she'll really feel like 'mom' until she is annoyed by her child. Those maternal instincts are very strong from day one for most women and, yes, that definitely makes you a mother. However, I don't think you've fully arrived into 'momminess' until you've had to yell, "STOP THAT!" or "GET THAT OUT OF YOUR EAR!"
At least, that's when I TRULY felt like I was a mom!
Then there are the days when the rainbows are everywhere and you don't remember the rain. The kids are still loud, still making messes, but adorable just the same. Maybe it's due in part to the fact that my headache has finally left and the coffee has kicked in. Maybe it's just when I open my eyes and see the wonderful creatures that they really are, messes and all. Those simple, sweet moments are the ones that are priceless when we just let them be kids.

Yeah, that's the good stuff.

November 9, 2007

Mental Note: Find better concealer

...or maybe I should give 'Bondo' a shot!
Man, these girls have my chin, don't they? We had a little bit of a 'girls' night out' last night and it was a great time! It was a late night but we went out for dinner and I STILL lost a pound from yesterday to today. YAY!
If you're actually concerned about the state of my waistline, you can check up on me HERE. Yes, I have posted my actual weight for the whole world to see! I want to be held accountable for my actions, you know?
I've also taken part in 'Picture Perfect Friday' on my Mulitply page. You can read check that out HERE. You might want to turn your volume down as I have music that automatically plays on that page.
Meanwhile, I have about a zillion things to do and naptime will be over before I know it!
Welcome to the giant treadmill that is life....

November 7, 2007

Is this what we call 'Organized Chaos?'

Being as we're mostly 'Okie' in nature, our family doesn't like to wear shoes too often. Since we live in the 'sticks,' gravel driveways and 'goatheads' pretty much ensure that we'll want to wear shoes when we go outside. The end result is a pile of shoes by the back door, which is the door we use the most.
I found this 'shoe cube' at Target and thought it would be the perfect solution for our predicament. It was cheap and would hold several pairs of shoes (especially the ones for the smaller feet!) at a time. It would also look as if we're trying to be more organized. The only shoes that don't seem to fit are any boot-type shoes that are tall and David's big 'ol boats. He usually keeps a couple pairs of shoes by the back door himself, which do not fit nicely in the little slots on this shelf. I would put my shoes and those of the girls inside the slots and just have David's sitting neatly on top.
Sounds like a plan, right?
The girls and I (being as lazy and inefficient as they come) just started piling our shoes on top of David's. We couldn't be bothered to bend down and put the shoes in a little cubby. This really shouldn't have come as any sort of surprise since we couldn't be bothered to carry them down the hall and put them in our rooms to begin with. So, catering to the laziness of myself and my daughters, I bought a canvas bin to stick on top. At least they would all stay in the bin and not be on the floor, right?
You're laughing at me, aren't you?
What happens now is a lot of gritting our teeth and cursing under our breath as we dig through David's ginormous shoes to find the other teeny tiny flip flop for 1YO at the bottom. Most days, David just dumps the whole bin on the floor in front, grabs what he needs and walks away.
Those are the days when he's not my favorite person.
I guess I need to just do a weekly roundup of sorts and get the girls to put all of the shoes in their rooms except for a pair or two for slipping on to go outside. Then again, I guess I would have to follow suit as well.
I guess I have some more thinking to do about this....

November 5, 2007

Some NOT-SO-SWEET News...

Apparently, someone has discovered that SUGAR actually contributes to WRINKLES!

I've recently given up most sugars for the sake of my waistline. I've even given up most flours and carbs in general for the same purpose. Surprisingly, it's not as difficult as I thought it might be. My biggest problem would be actually giving into that 'one piece of candy.' Then, the line I drew in the sand for myself would be blurred and all hell would break loose in my daughters' Halloween candy!

I've even weaned myself off of sugar in my coffee over the last few days. Surprisingly, it's still pretty good! I'm almost positive that I will become a diabetic in the next 10 or 20 years, due to the fact that all of the women but one have done so on my mom's side of the family. Now, I know that there is a good chance of me NOT becoming a diabetic if I keep my weight in check and have a good diet and exercise regularly and...yeah, you know the schpeel! But, I also know giving up sugar will help me as well.

Plus, I want to get really skinny and have all the other moms hate me!


While I had just about convinced myself on my own that I could do without sugar, for the most part, when I saw a little piece on the news. I was watching CNN at the time (which I NEVER DO!) but here is a link with pretty much the same info. It makes a lot of sense and I would LOVE to see it actually work that way on my own person!
I'll let you know how my journey goes. It will be a real challenge with the holidays coming and all....I'm sure you guys will get to read about all of my gripes pretty regularly! In the meantime, I try to check in at Weight Loss Wars pretty regularly to keep my stats current. It's a great site that you should totally check out if you get the chance. Not too many people can say that they don't have ANY weight they could do without! I know I could stand to lose a few...or THIRTY!

November 1, 2007

'Twas a Happy Halloween

The Three Pumpkins
Well, it was a great Halloween around here! David is on vacation this week. He actually needs to be on vacation (if it's not on a weekend) to actually see the girls trick-or-treat. Otherwise, he just gets off work way too late!
11YO decided that she wanted to be 'Sharpay' from High School Musical. We found the dress, she had the shoes, I had the jewelry, and I picked the flowers for her hair up from a craft store. She was very pleased.

Then, 4YO wanted to be The Little Mermaid. Just how did these girls get to be so girly, anyway? Grandma made her the mermaid tail and sewed the 'shells' on the top. It's too cold and I would definitely not let her walk around in a bikini top or actual clam shells! I found her some silver, sparkly shoes and my my found the top and the tights to match the top. She was quite happy with her costume as well.

The flower was left over from her sister's costume and just seemed to make her look more 'tropical.'

Lastly, 1YO had no opinion. She had no clue as to what the night had in store for her. We (well, 4YO mostly) decided that she should be 'Flounder,' Ariel's faithful friend. I found a costume online for my mom to look at. She can look at something and pretty much figure out how to sew it. Just when we did that, the costume we were looking at went on sale for $14.99. It was decided that it would cost more than that in just materials. So, my mom just ordered the one online. And it was even cuter (and softer) that that website ever gave it credit for. She would not even put the jacket on at first. She fought us every time we tried. Last night, however, she just conceded and wore the whole thing. We were very pleased...

And once she figured out the whole 'candy thing'.....

This Snickers bar never stood a chance!

...I think she was pretty happy too!

The End