September 22, 2009

...and the growups say, "NO! DON'T WANNA!"

I need to learn how to cook.

Okay, not really. I mean, I know how to cook. I guess I just need to re-learn how to cook. Actually, I just need to put less fat, more fiber, and fewer carbs into the rotation. Shouldn't be too hard right?


I mean, on paper it doesn't seem all that hard. But I have to take into account how PICKY certain members of this family can be. (And I'm mostly not talking about the kids here!) While David is the one with the high cholesterol, high triglycerides and aversion to broccoli, he and I both could stand to drop some poundage. Our girls, on the other hand, are all on the thin side. With genetics on their side, they most likely won't have to worry about weight until they've had a few kids. Then again, if we can instill healthier habits now, there's a chance they may never have the struggles that so many of us have. I was the smallest, thinnest girl with the flattest chest through pretty much all of junior high and high school. (At least, that's how it seemed in my insecure, pubescent mind...) I was jealous of the girls with a little more meat on them. They had hips and boobs and the boys noticed them more. The heavier girls may have had the own crosses to bear, but they got boobs first, by golly! Boobs are so important to a young girl. They mean something. They are what separates the girls from the boys, in addition to the tragically blue mascara and earlier understanding of basic hygiene.
This just goes to show you that the grass is always greener in your neighbor's yard!
David has had cholesterol and triglyceride issues for a few years now and you can only medications for those sort of things for so long before your liver starts to complain. His liver is just starting to complain a bit.
I do find it very amusing that David's doctor recommended that he quit drinking. David doesn't drink. I can count on both hands the number of alcoholic drinks that he has had in his entire life! As a matter of fact, I think I had more to drink at one wedding in particular than he has ever had. And that was a few lifetimes ago!
Aaaaahhh, the memories!
As difficult as it seems to instill healthier eating habits into our lifestyle, I know the whole 'exercise thing' will be even tougher. David works a very physical job. He is running and walking and stopping all day long. He comes home dead tired. Now, I know that exercise gives you more energy over time and yadayadayada...but good luck convincing David of that at this point in his life! He leaves the house at 7:45 in the morning and gets home anywhere between 8 and 9:30 at night. He then eats a big dinner and passes out in front of the television. As much as I know that's not the best thing to do, telling him so just makes me more the 'nagging wife' and him less cooperative. (I can't really blame him, since I react the same way when the roles are reversed!)
It's even more terrible that this is happening right now, when October is a week or so away and it's still so flippin' hot here.
Is it wrong that I want to cold-cock the weatherman when he uses the term 'century mark' to describe the high temperatures for the day? Not only is that just ridiculous at this point, but the whole idea of the word 'century' sounds like forver! 'Forever' is not the ideal message to come across when we are ready for summer to be OVER. Basically, the kids are wearing out/outgrowing their summer clothes that are appropriate for school and my capri pants could us a break! Bring on the sweaters! Bring on the jeans!
The hot weather just makes him more tired and cranky, as it does so many others.
To top it all off, I'm probably the laziest person I know! I don't really care for exercise and have no real stamina. My limbs are not very cooperative so anything that requires them to actually move is, franky, just asking too much. The day goes by much more smoothly if I can just spend most of it sitting on my tuckus.
So, there you have it. I guess you could say that I'm searching for that magic wand to wave around and either make us LIKE healthy food and exercise or make us not need them. The kids, well they're just along for the ride and stand to benefit a bunch from this in the long run anyway.
Shouldn't that be reason enough?

September 18, 2009

3YO vs. Sleeping, Boxer vs. Humidifier, and WHY GOD MADE COFFEE

Oh, ray of are sorely misplaced this morning!

Sleeping like a baby, or an angel, or like the horrible little person who kept me up last night? 3YO has a cold. Well, her version of a cold is to get a horrible cough and have it linger for a month or so. So, there we are. Of course the cough gets worse at night. Of course we're always on the lookout for the pesky recurrent croup that she seems to get with every little sniffle. And of course that means that we bring out this little guy:

Since we got Aly in the spring, she'd never actually seen the humidifier in action. It was bad enough that I was lying in 3YO's bed to help her get to sleep. Aly really isn't okay with me lying in my own bed during the day or even lying anywhere else in the house besides my bed. She gets really nervous and paces and barks. So, I was just about asleep in 3YO's bed when Aly barked to let me know that I shouldn't be there. Apparently, she takes her job pretty seriously when it comes to patrolling the perimeters at night and nothing gets past her. Just as I was attempting to hush her and let her know that it was okay, she noticed the humidifier. OH BOY! HERE WE GO! She got that instantly confused but trying really hard to understand what she's looking at so you can't decide if she looks smart or dumb boxer head tilt thing going on. If you've ever met a boxer, I'm sure you know what I'm talking about. Cutest thing ever. (Even at 1:00 a.m. apparently!) She stalked the humidifier for awhile, creeping up ever-so-slowly until it would quietly bubble. That would send her back several feet. Then, she would proceed to look at me as if she's protecting us from some evil force. Each time she got a bit closer to us. Once she finally got close enough, she stuck her head directly over the frog humidifier and inhaled the mist as if it were some kind of drug. Then, she crawled under the bed and peered out from underneath the comforter to spy on it for awhile. She had to make sure it didn't try anything funny!
I really wish I'd had my camera on me, but it was after one in the morning and I wasn't about to move any more than absolutely necessary.
3YO seems to be doing fine this morning. Well, except for all the hacking! It doesn't seem to bother her when it't not keeping her from sleeping. I see a lot of television in our future... for me? Nothing ten hours of sleep, half a pot of coffee, some mascara and about 3 1/2 pounds of concealer coudn't fix!

YEAH! Like YOU'D look any better after a night like that! I'm sure the DMV would be more than happy to make this my next driver's license photo. They're nice like that!
Some days definitely seem longer than others, don't they?

September 15, 2009

New Camera and My Inner Brat

With this much loose skin around her face, Aly seems to never make the same expression twice!
Whew! When it rains, it pours! Speaking of rain, we got some yesterday. It was cold and breezy and WONDERFUL. Of course, come this weekend the temps will be nearing 100 again, but it was good while it lasted!
I just had a birthday. Since my camera stopped working properly, I did my research and found just the camera that I wanted to replace it with. First, I did my part to conserve and called our local camera repair place to see what it would cost to fix. The only thing wrong with it is that it no longer acknowledges the flash. When your flash doesn't flash, you end up only being able to take pictures of people facing the sun like they did when my mom was a kid. All of her childhood pictures have her squinting. The guy at the camera repair place laughed at me. It was too old, cheap, whatever to fix. Not worth my money or their time, from what they tell me.
Once again, it's a disposable world we live in.
Anyhow, my new camera is a Canon Powershot SX20 IS. She's PURDY! I couldn't really justify anything more than this because I'm pretty much using it to take pictures of kids and dogs. (See above picture...and I already have like a hundred of that particular pose!) I'm still learning how to use the camera and, so far, the most frustrating part is that it only comes with a tiny little manual to get started and the real user's manual is on a cd-rom. You have to download and print it yourself, if you want to keep it on hand! That part is a little annoying, but the camera itself doesn't seem to need that much explanation. There are a few things I definitely need to read up on, like how I changed the color of the whole eveing sky to orange when it really wasn't. I'll figure it out....eventually!
In the meantime, folks around here will probably be suffering from their share of 'flash blindess!' We seem to be back in the full swing of school. We have even added church on Sunday, knitting group on Monday, and gymnastics on Wednesday into the mix. So far, things seem to be falling into place quite nicely.
Great...I bet I just jinxed myself now!
I'm starting to try to get back into good habits when it comes to keeping the house running smoothly. That being said, my worst enemy on this frontier is my inner brat. I do better when I don't feel like I MUST do something. Then it makes me want to. Even when I don't have to do the things I do, doing too many of them puts me in a bad mood. It's the strangest thing, but being especially productive really messes with my head. For example, I had quite the productive day yesterday. Really, I did. I did like five loads and laundry and got it all put away. I made three beds. I cleaned the bathrooms and got the kitchen the cleanest it's been in long time now. It wasn't hard, even 3YO was good about not making messes while I was cleaning up the other messes. (Usually, that puts me in a TERRIBLE MOOD!) When I was done with all of that, I knew I could relax and feel accomplished. I knew I was going to get to knit with a local group that evening and was really looking forward to it. But, my problem was that I just started to settle down and relax a bit when the two older ones were getting home from school. That meant I had to start arguing with 6YO about her homework and sight words and that I had to hear about every teensy-tiny little detail about 13YO's day. I was trying to get something done (but not for fun!) on the computer and it was taking forever. By the time it was done, we had to rush out the door for my knitting group and we were late as it was. I was cranky. I never had any 'down time' and my brain was overstimulated. Getting a lot done puts me in a bad mood.
My inner brat is winning today because I'm doing as little as possible and my mood is outstanding. I really need to do something about my thought process, don't I? I can almost picture myself with a spotless house and standing at the door screaming at my family as they come in the door. They like me better when my house is a little messy. HECK, I like me better too!
Maybe there's a pill I can take for this sort of thing. In the meantime, I'll have my good days and my bad days. Today, my goals are to maintain the high score on a solitaire game on Facebook and learn a little more about my camera.
Poor 3YO and the dogs will probably be seeing spots for the rest of the day....

September 7, 2009

Flashbacks and Gag Reflexes

Was this a part of your childhood? Do you remember it?

Somehow, David and I were talking about this show today. Does it ring a bell for anyone? While I remember the show fondly, I think I really only actually watched a few episodes. A friend of mine had to make sure she was home on Thursdays by 4:30 (or whenever it was actually on!) so she could watch it. I liked it too...I guess I just wasn't that devoted of a fan.

That or it was apparent at an early age that I would be a flaky and inconsistent growup!

Thanks to the marvelous creation that is YouTube, it took only seconds to find this clip and dozens of others. You know that little blonde girl? That's Fergie! WOW...I so wanted to be her when I was a kid. Her hair was really blonde and fluffy (while mine was blonde and stringy) and she could do all those handspring-type things. Who wouldn't want to be cool like that, right?

When I was older, long after I'd seen any episodes of Kids Incorporated, I thought Marta was awesome. But, that's only because she then became Martika and did that song 'Toy Soldiers.' Hey...when you're a fourteen-year-old girl in the late 80's, that song is DEEP.

Shutup. I'm sure you were as lame as I was!

Other names like Mario Lopez and Jennifer Love Hewitt came out of that show as well. Who knew? David and I giggled as we watched some of the videos and reminisced. Then, it was time to get back to real life, like mowing the lawn and arguing about the holes that the dogs have dug in the backyard. Life goes on.

Hey...that was another great show!

I other news, I discovered a movie that triggers my gag reflex like no other. Let me start by explaining my tolerate/hate relationship with chewing gum. I chewed gum as a kid. On rare occasions, you might even see me chewing it now. But, I have a mild form of TMJ. It's not too serious and I usually find I can avoid pretty much any suffering by not chewing gum. I can even chew a bit of gum, but I have to remember to dispose of it the minute it no longer has flavor. If I chew it too long, the jaw gets tired and the headache starts coming on. I also need to avoid going to bed really stressed, because I clench my jaw when I'm sleeping and wake up with one of those awful headaches then too. I have a bite guard, but haven't worn it in years because I've found other things that work....for now.

Wow...I just went a bit off-track there, didn't I? Welcome to another episode about the derailed trains of thought in my head. Confused yet? I am.

Anyhow, I'm not really used to having gum around regularly. And, I have this thing where whenver the gum leaves my mouth, it cannot go back. BLEH! Seriously, it's just gross to me. So, sticking a piece of gum behind your ear (do people even still do that? ) or sticking it to your plate while you eat a meal is BEYOND DISGUSTING to me. Chewing ABC gum (Already Been Chewed, by someone else) is even more disgusting. I guess you could say that I'm not a big fan of saliva-related things in general. (We're not talking about babies though. Baby drool is completely non-toxic, as opposed to the stuff in the mouths of the gum-chewing generation. Those people need to keep their saliva in their mouth!)

So, you can probably imagine how much my stomach turned when I watched Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist. On the whole, I liked the movie. Really, I did. It was entertaining, even made me laugh. I can pretty much watch any movie, so long as I can begin to care about the characters. And I liked them, for the most part. The thing I had the problem with was the scene (for those of you who have seen it) where Norah's friend throws up in the bus station bathroom. Then, her phone rings and she accidently drops in the in toilet...before she flushes! Then, she manages to drop her gum in there too. She really needs to talk to her friend, so she fishes her phone out. (I had to look away!) She also reeeeeeally thought she needed that gum. And, even typing it is starting to make me dry-heave, so I'll leave the rest to your imagination. Needless to say, I wasn't enjoying the rest of the movie so much as I was keeping track of where the gum was. The gum got around....

Yup, now I just threw up in my mouth a little!

So, as much as saliva and gum gross me out, saliva and gum combined with vomit in public toilets really pushes me over the top. Imagine that!

And that, my friends, is pretty much what was left in my head today. Now that I have it out, there seems to be a clean slate now. Hmm...what to fill it with next...

September 3, 2009

Say 'CHEESE'....or 'JISHI!'

Well, thanks to the whole cable On Demand thing, I'm proud to report that 3YO is working on learning her Mandarin Chinese. Those who have kids know I'm talking about Ni Hao, Kai-Lan. It's a nice refreshing change from Dora the Explorer. The really amusing part of it all is the fact that my child could be voted 'Most Resistant to Change' and most of the episodes seem to be based on trying new things and basic problem-solving skills.
If nothing else, at least I'll be able to appreciate the irony of it all.
Earlier this week, we were able to enjoy the drama that is picture day. OY! Picture day...UGH! What a horrible invention! I mean, I always buy the pictures and I will keep them forever. Those are memories, dangit! Even the ones where their hair sticks out funny or their smile is crooked or nonexistent...that is who they were at that particular moment and that's how I should remember them. (That's the same reason I always buy the 'Santa pictures' where they're crying or refuse to smile! Those are some of my favorites anyway!) But picture day can be especially traumatic when you have girls. Fortunately for me, I only had one of my girls having her picture taken this week. But the one to be photographed...she is, perhaps, the moodiest of them all! I'll spare you the ugly details and just tell you that she left the house in tears that day. Yes, tears. And there was no yelling at my end, but changing your mind on your outfit when it's time to walk out the door...well, it just doesn't matter because it's TIME TO WALK OUT THE DOOR.
Interestingly enough, this is the same child who won a little award at school for being such a good student. At school, she is a completely different child. She takes pride in following the rules, listening to the teacher and waiting her turn. She's almost like a little robot at school, so much so that I've had parents doubt my stories about an argument I might have had with her that morning AND THEY WEREN'T EVEN BEING SARCASTIC. Seriously. I KNOW!
I often tell her that I'm so proud of her for being such a good listener at school. I never want that to change. HOWEVER, that being said, I do wish she's listen a little better at home. I guess that's how it's supposed to be. I'd rather have her listen to her teachers more than me. I guess I'm just being selfish and wishing that something as simple as picking out socks wouldn't need to entail so much drama. Silly me, I know!
I guess it's what I have coming. Apparently, I was quite the little pain in the arse when I was a kid. Trust me, my mom points it out every chance she gets! I wasn't really one to get into trouble at school, but I sure gave my mom a healthy dose of H-E-DOUBLE HOCKEY STICKS when I was at home.
I know. ME??? NOOOOOO!!!!
Yes. I still have that pain in the arse inside of me somewhere. Now, she only usually comes out for my husband. (Lucky guy, I know!) I do keep her within reach when dealing with my kids, too. To them, I invented the whining and arguments that they try on me on a regular basis. I've done my share of torturing my own parents, and picture day was no exception. We have the funny school pictures to prove it.
The fact is that I'm raising three completely different people and every single milestone can be a whole new experience for me. I had to give birth to my third to know that the only thing I really know is that I don't know anything. After lowering the bar a substantial amount, this job doesn't seem so hard after all...except on maybe picture day!