Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I'm Not Here . . .

I'm not here today.

I am over guest posting at Snuggle Wasteland. 

And, if you haven't ever visited the Wasteland, head right on over.

Tracie is a hoot!! :)

Saturday, March 26, 2011

American Idol, I Am Not . . .

Remember the time that I depants-ed myself at the gym?

Well then stop what you are doing and go straight to the pantless post.

Go on.



Now that you know just how well I have already humiliated myself at the gym, you can partake of my latest not so stellar moment.

Last weekend, I had to do an 8 mile run in training for my May half-marathon.  My training partner was AWOL, and so I knew that I would have to tackle the journey on my own.  The thought of eight miles by myself scared the bejeebers out of me frankly, and I knew that I had to psyche myself up for it. So,  I spent some time one afternoon working on a playlist for my ipod with songs that would get me through those 8 miles.  Clearly, I chose my songs too well, because as I plodded along on the treadmill with my good tunes pumping in my ears, I found my groove.

I forgot where I was.

And I sang. . . out loud.

Yes.  Yes.  Running along on my treadmill, in the middle of the very public gym, with other gym patrons not even 10 feet away from me, I sang along with my ipod.

I was happy, I was running, and I sang out loud.

Problem was, I sang like I was singing in the shower.  You know that kind of singing right?  The kind of singing where you can not hear yourself, and therefore believe that you sound good.  The kind of singing that is obnoxiously off key and makes all the local cats in the neighborhood start screeching.  The kind of singing that will get you a TV spot when you are auditioning for American Idol but not a ticket to Hollywood.

Yes. That kind of singing.

It was not pretty, my friends.  Not pretty.

So, in Pink's terminology Raise Your Glass . . . to me. 

I clearly need another drink after this latest humiliation.

**********Addendum  . . .   If my singing ends up on you tube and someone gets a million bucks and a Today show spot, I want a cut.  It is the least that I deserve after the looks that I received.  Just sayin'.

Friday, March 25, 2011

A Picture is Worth . . .?

The outside of the school photo envelope read, "A smile worth sharing . . ."


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Confessions of My Crazy Love

I confess . . .  I leave broken egg shells in the sink.  I know about salmonella.  I know that the shells muck up the garbage disposal.  I know.  I know.  I still do it.

I confess . . . I sweep up the floor and leave the dirt and crumbs in a pile.  I am lazy.  I don't want to find the dust pan. . .  and I know that hubs will pick it up as soon as he sees it.

I confess . . . I forget to shut the garage door. ( In my defense, the button IS six feet high and clearly not in my five foot two line of sight.)

I confess. . . I have accidentally emailed my hubs' school secretary about how he had polluted the bathroom that morning.

I confess . . .I do not screw the lids back onto containers correctly.  Consequently, hubs has dumped an entire jar of chili powder into his chili instead of just a few tablespoons.

I confess. . . I laughed about the chili powder.

I confess . . . I laughed until I cried about the chili powder.

I confess . . . I have fed my hubs string (Yes.  Actual string!) for dinner causing him to think that I was trying to kill him.

I confess . . . my van should play the theme to Sanford and Sons.  At any one time, there may be decaying french fries, a used sucker stuck to the window, and 6 coffee cups left behind in order to make my van a science experiment  on wheels.

I confess . . . I get a little irrational at certain times of the month.  I cry unexpectedly, like at Geico commercials.  I yell about stupid things, like when hubs put his foot underneath the area rug and wrinkled it.  I vacillate between "hold me" and "get the hell away from me!"

I confess . . . I may be underestimating the above.  I am all out crazy.  Hubs has come home to entire rooms rearranged and painted. . . just because.

I confess . . . I drive hubs crazy . . . crazy in love!

******************Linking to Mama Kat's today!**************************

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mommy is Pooped . . .

Dear El,
Mommy loves you, and mommy loves that you can go to the potty all by yourself.  You are such a big girl!  What mommy doesn't love is when you try to wipe yourself.  Mommy doesn't like our bathroom to look like this. . .
pic compliments of wikimedia

Using 17 rolls of toilet paper so that our bathroom looks like it has been t'pee-ed by a bunch of drunken teenagers,  stopping up the toilet with the mounds of paper, and then still (remarkably) having marks of poopie evidence on your Dora panties . . . does not make mommy happy.

So, please, please, please give mommy a holler when you are ready.

Otherwise, mommy may have to purchase stock in Charmin.



PS  On a different note, how does a three year old have such big poops, anyway?  Just curious.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick: He's Not Just a Saint Anymore . . .

Happy St. Patrick's Day !

Today we are searching for the leprechaun that turned our toilet water green and decorated and adorned our mirrors with green crayon shamrocks.  We are also baking Irish Soda Bread, and the house smells absolutely yummy.

It is a good day.

In honor of this fun day, here is an Ethan story from a few years ago.  It is a family classic. 



After preschool today, Ethan was quite animated.

"Mom! There was this new boy in class."

"Really? Tell me about him."

"Well . . . " he paused thinking. "He brought chocolate."

Smiling, I responded, "That was nice. You know how mommy loves chocolate. Do you have any extra? " It was 3 o'clock. I could go for an afternoon chocolate fix.

"Maaaa- aaaaamm!" he sighed. "No! I don't! Anyway, he likes gold."

"What kind of gold? Like the color?"

"No. Gold. REAL gold. Like jewelry gold." This was interesting. I was picturing a little 4 year old adorned with bling, golden front tooth, flashing gang signs. And then E threw in the last nugget of info.

"Aaaannnddd," he drew out the word, "His name is . . ." and he stopped.

"His name is what?"

"Um. I forget, " E stated. Typical. I waited and finally he had it. "Patrick! His name was Patrick!"

That's when it dawned on me.

" E? Did you actually meet Patrick? " I quizzed.

"Well, no. But Mrs. Pritzer sure talked about him a lot. I bet I'll meet him tomorrow," he said with finality.

I am sure he will too. Tomorrow is March 17th, St. Patrick's Day. So E's new classmate is a leprechaun.

At least his school is multi-cultural.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Whiffle Ball of Death . . .

It was a pleasant 60 degrees as I worked in the yard on Saturday.  Dirty trickles of sweat snaked down my face, as I yanked out miles and miles of ivy.  I was grimy, smelly, and certainly reminiscent of Charlie Brown's Pig Pen as I labored in my garden. The sounds of the kids playing in the yard,  the scratchy scraping noise of my too old metal rake, and the bursts of wind that suddenly stirred the naked branches in the trees made for an awesome spring soundtrack.  Despite the fact that my personal cloud of dust followed after me everwhere I raked, I was happy.  I stopped my work, leaned on my old rake, and surveyed the scene. Breathing deeply, I drank in the lovely moment.

Unfortunately, it wasn't long before I was choked.

I heard the familiar crack of plastic as Ethan made contact with the whiffle ball.  He had slammed the pitch into a near perfect line drive.

Too bad that line drive was interrupted after just 3 feet of flight . . .  by my nose.


pic compliments of brady bunch shrine

It was my own personal Marcia Brady-like moment.

After copious amounts of snot and blood and swelling, Ethan tiptoed over to me and whispered in a gush,  "I am sooooo glad I didn't kill you."

Even though I knew that it would restart the blood and snot cycle, I couldn't help but laugh.

Death by a whiffle ball?

I love that kid.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Day That Football Died

Side note . . .

I initially posted this, got scared of its possible repercussions, and then took it down.  After sleeping on it, I have decided that although it may anger some people, it is my truth.   And . . .  I have told nothing but my truth. 

So, I am reposting it.

I am putting it out there.

Thanks for reading.

I could instantly tell from hub's face that something was wrong. As he heavily dropped his laptop case from his shoulders, I noticed that his sunburned cheeks did nothing to hide his paleness beneath, and as he opened his mouth to speak, his words would not form.

He closed his mouth silently, looked at the ground, and tried again.

"Life at K's house is bad, Annie. Bad."

It was one simple word, but it spoke volumes between us. I busied my hands by wiping the counter, and asked simply, "How bad Paul?"

He didn't hesitate as he brought his gaze to meet mine. "Bad. Ugly. Just not right."

He slumped onto the couch.

K was one of hub's football players. He wasn't a great athlete, and he wasn't even a great student for that matter. But despite these shortcomings, hubs and I both knew that K was a great kid. K was the kind of kid that never missed a practice even if he knew that he wouldn't start on Friday night. He was the kid that was polite to a fault with "yes ma'ams" and "no ma'ams" rolling from his lips without effort. Despite living in an apartment with his single mom and working extra part time jobs to help out, he was the kid that found reasons to always smile. K was a good kid.

I knew that if hubs was saying it was bad, then it was really and truly bad.

I stopped wiping down the counter and noticed that I had shined one very clean, circular spot while I was thinking about K. I half-heartedly chuckled, rested both hands on my very pregnant belly, and began.

"Well . . . what can we do? " Then I hesitated. I knew what hubs was thinking, but I also knew he didn't know how to ask me. So, I voiced the question for both of us. "Does he need a place to stay? Does he need a safe place?"

Hubs swallowed and answered truthfully, "I don't know, but I am going to talk to him. I am going to let him know that we are on his side.  That he is safe."

That's just the kind of man that hubs is.

He has driven to kid's houses to get them out of bed and to practice, he has counseled kids that were heading down the wrong path, and he has even provided odd jobs for kids, knowing that they wouldn't accept charity when their power had been turned off but knowing that they wouldn't turn away work.

Hubs is a good man.

He is a good man that turned in his football coach resignation yesterday.

No, he did not do it to have more time with us, his family.

No, he did not do anything wrong.

No, he was not forced to resign.

Let me explain . . .

In our small school district, there have always been anonymous rumblings about hubs being able to coach two sports. The anonymous rumblers usually complain, get it out, and move on. This time, apparently, the rumblers moved on, alright. Hubs was told that he was being given a choice about his coaching. He would not go into detail or bad mouth any person, but I know hubs and I can read between the lines.

Hubs was given a choice alright. He could continue to coach both sports knowing that he would not be supported against the rumblers, or he could give up one coaching position.

What a choice!

So, hubs took the high road. He chose to not stoop to the level of the " anonymous rumblers". He chose to give up his football team. He chose to show those boys, his boys, that despite petty, political maneuvering, their coach was still the same old, good man. He chose to be a good example of what it is to be a man of character.

He chose to be a good man.

I couldn't be more proud.

And hub's take? He is saddened, but he is positive. "Annie, I am OK. We will be OK. Nobody died. When we are 87, this will just be a road bump."

But, I disagree.

I think that he is wrong. Something did die.

That little part of me that believed that every person is inherently good?

That little part of me is gone.

********Update******************Thank you to KS who provided me with a little clarity. If I lose the part of me that has the ability to see the good in people, then they win. Since I hate to lose, I will hold on to that part for a while longer. :) ********************************************

Thursday, March 10, 2011

When Is the Right Time to Spill My Secrets?

When is the right time to tell your kids about who you really are?

google images/ question-mark.jpg
Don't get me wrong.  My kiddies know me.  They know me well.

But, their image of me is tied to mothering.  I am mom.  I am the one that kisses their skinned knees.  I am the one that gets whacked out about pig sty-like bedrooms.   I am the one that is the Wii dance champion.

I am their mom.

They see me as their blankie.  Their go-to girl when things get tough.  Their supporter and cheerleader and pride bursting braggart.

They see me as mom.

But, often, I wonder, when will they see me as Annie?  When will they understand that I was a full and complete person before I ever considered becoming their mother?

I don't have the answers.

And, right now, I would say that my kids know the basics.  I am honest with them. If they have a question about me, I will answer it.  They know that I was a good student and that I stayed out of trouble.  They know that I was active in school activities, that I was a color guard band geek, that I dated different boys.  They know that I worked as a summer camp counselor, as a life guard, as a bra sales girl at Victoria's Secret.  I regale them with tales from these jobs and from my others as trainer and aerobics instructor and eventually as teacher.  I share funny stories about my college years and the craziness that I encountered.

They know the basics.

But, when is the right time to share that one of my high school boyfriends was crazy, came to my school to confront me about our breakup, and physically restrained me until teachers intervened?  When is the right time to share that despite being highly involved in lots of school activities, there were times that I felt desperately alone?  When is the right time to share that I experienced the "mean girls" in full force?  That I was bullied?  When is the right time to share about my stupid mistakes in college with friends?  With alcohol?  With schoolwork?  When is the right time to share about my first failed marriage? About my ex? About how I think that my divorce was one of the best things that has ever happened to me?


It is a fine line.

On one hand, I do not want to lie to them or withhold information.  On the other hand, I am their mother.  I know them.  I want to protect them.  I know that right now, they are not old enough or mature enough to handle the information.  But, time has a way of speeding by, like the scenery out the window from the backseat of a car, and I know that sooner, rather than later, the "right" time will arrive.

It will be time for them to meet Annie, a different Annie than they know.

I hope I am ready.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

When The Big O Hangs Around . . .

Ethan is very literal.

You may remember the time that his t-ball coach directed him to left field with the instructions, "Go stand behind Mark."  And, my little literal love trotted his butt out to where Mark was positioned and stood about six inches behind him.

There are no grey areas for that boy.

So, the other day, when he brought home his art work, and it was titled "The Big O". . .

I was more than a little worried.

Had a rotten little worldly kid explained the birds and the bees to him on the bus?

Had Ethan secretly viewed some Netflix movie in the basement when I wasn't watching?

Had he  . . . ahem . . . overheard his parents?

Clearly, I was panicking.

So, I worked up my nerve, and just asked him.  "Ethan?  What exactly is The Big O?  I can't tell from the picture."

Naturally, he sighed, rolled his eyes, and explained, "Maa-ahm!" he dragged out.  "Can't you tell what the Big O is?"

I gave him a blank stare and kept silent.

"Oh!  Alright! I will just tell you, " he lamented.  And then, with a big old grin on his face he explained, "It's an oppossum!  You know?  The Big O?"

 I have to admit, I was never so excited to discuss an oppossum in my whole life.

And, the really big O?  That conversation will have to be left until another day . . . and his father.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

My Tuesday Truths

Universal Truth number 1. . .

When you arrange for workmen to come to the house between the hours of 8am and 10am, the workmen will not arrive between the hours of 8am to 10 am.

Universal truth number 2 . . .

When arranging for workmen to come to the house between the hours of 8 am to 10 am, the workmen will not arrive in the said window of time and will instead arrive after you have given up all hope of their arrival, have decided to take a shower, and are clad only in a bathroom towel and sopping wet hair.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Road Trip Part 2 / Bus Ride From Hell With "Damien" to Boot

One evening, after a day of running from ride to ride, the kiddies and I all snuggled together in the 5 seats that spanned the back of a Walt Disney World bus for transport back the hotel.

Directly in front of us in a seat that faced the aisle was Dalton.

Dalton, by the looks of him, was approximately 5 years old, had had entirely to many sugary Mickey treats, and was in a perfectly foul mood.  His painted face that once had sported a pirate's mug a la Jack Sparrow, now resembled a pirate that had woken from a 3 day bender with his earring ripped from his ear.

Dalton was not in a good place.


And his parents?  Oh, those poor people.  Even though they had probably created Dalton's little menacing self with too many yeses and not nearly enough nos through the years, I felt sorry for them.  Those parents looked beat.  Mom's hair was spilling out of her low ponytail forming a frizzy halo around her face, and dad's shadowed face made it appear to be 5 o'clock . . . tomorrow.  They were just surviving, but barely.

As the bus wound its way back to the hotel, Dalton cried, kicked at, and finally bit his dad.  In an effort to diffuse and redirect Dalton's behavior, a well meaning grandpa-like man began to make silly faces at him.  I knew that he was just trying to help, but I also had surveyed the situation, and I had a feeling about what would happen.

Cue Dalton.

"What are you lookin' at me for old man?"  Dalton accused.

Mom placed a well meaning hand on Dalton's little leg in an attempt to calm him, and it did, momentarily.  Unfortunately for mom, it was like  she was trying to hold up an umbrella to shield herself from a hurricane.  Inevitably, everyone was going to get wet.  And good.

The grandpa man's eyes twinkled, and he said in a jovial tone, "I'm just watching you acting so silly."

And, even though grandpa man was a happy, kind man, Dalton didn't see that.  Dalton went after him.
"You stop lookin' at me old man,"  Dalton paused and lowered his voice.  Then he repeated,  "You stop lookin' at me old guy. . . or I will kick your ass!"

Instantly the bus riders fell silent.  We waited to see the drama unfold.  I secretly said a prayer for Dalton's parents.  The way Dalton was headed I was fairly certain that I would be seeing the family on Dr. Phil in the very near future.

It was then that Ellerie broke the silence and whispered in my ear, "Mommy!  That boy needs a time out . . . or a spank!"

I chuckled.  My three year old was absolutely right.  Dalton needed some discipline for sure.

Then Ethan piped in, "Mom, if that was us, we would be dead."

Again.  I giggled.

He was right too.

After I uttered one more silent prayer for Dalton and his parents, I hugged all my kiddies close and was thankful that they were mine.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Road Trip/ Part I . . . I'm a Survivor and I Need a Margarita . . .

Travel expenses for road trip to Disney World . . .

Snacks -$20

games from the dollar store- $10

candy for my sweet tooth- $5

oil change that turned into a rear brake replacement and power steering fluid leak fix . . .  $436.00

Extra night in a hotel room to get on the road early to avoid a snow storm . . . $65.00

Windshield wiper replacement for the wiper that flew off at 70 mph during the monsoon that enveloped my van on I-75 . . .$8.00

Odd rumbling noise inspection while getting the wiper replaced . . . free

Results of odd rumbling noise inspection = broken tire rod . . . $237.00 (and two hours)

Snacks at the Dollar General while we were waiting for the van to be fixed . . . $11.25

Umbrellas purchased at the dollar general to walk back through the monsoon to the auto shop to wait for the van to be fixed . . .$10.00

Video games to keep the kids from climbing over the tires in the automotive showroom . . . $8.00

Another hotel room(this time with a pool and a hot tub for me) . . . 89.00

Advil . . . $4.85

Gas . . . my first born child

Arrival at Disney!!!

Margarita for mommy? . . . $9.00

 . . . and worth every penny!!!!

******Special thanks to the lovely gentlemen at the automotive shop in London, Kentucky for helping out.  My sister-in-law, my 3 kiddies, and I all owe you a debt of gratitude for keeping us safe on our 15 hour journey. :)

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