Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Rites of Passage

During my long blogging absence, Ashley "graduated" from preschool. It was very cute. For about a week afterwards she kept requesting special favors and treats by saying "I'm the graduate girl." Here she is receiving her diploma and medal. I didn't really understand the sunglasses but they turned out to be handy when J needed an extra pair in the car the other day.

One of the best things about the night was the rare decent family photo we got.

Monday, June 23, 2008

More Random Thoughts....

I love a good series, so here is part two of my random thoughts. For those people who may not like bullet points, I have done sub-headings. Don't get too used to it.

Things I Don't Want to Forget

It is happening. If you are older than 30 and read this blog, you know what I am talking about. Yes, I have forgotten most of my life stories. I try so hard to remember little, interesting tidbits and it won't come. Of course I can remember totally random and useless stuff. For example, J asked me tonight where we ate before he took the MCAT 3 years ago. I rattled that off without a problem. (It was Rudy's BBQ if you are just dying to know). But if you were to ask me about my senior prom, forget it. This is why I feel compelled to start writing little memories as they come to me, or include special little things the kids do. After all this blog is really a record for me, so I should use it.

First Thing I Don't Want to Forget

Summers. I was gardening tonight ( a fancy way to say pulling weeds) and I realized how much I love evenings in the summer. I know this is a favorite time of many people, but I am rarely outside between the hours of 7:30 and 9 due to baths and bedtimes. It made me think back to several summers growing up.

I remember one summer after the fifth grade my dad took a friend, Erin, and me down to see my great aunt and uncle. They lived in Harlingen, which was close enough for us to take a day trip to Mexico. I don't remember much about the town except for the restaurant we ate at. It seemed really dark and they played mariachi music. As a mature fifth grader I already knew a few things, like they served alcohol to anyone down there. Since we were with my dad I knew we weren't going to be getting any shots, so we thought a good way to make us feel hip was to order some fancy, dancy Shirley Temples. I will never forget those Temples as long as I live. They were the best I have ever had. Down in Mexico they make them a little different and add some fruit punch to the usual sprite and amaretto. My friend and I started acting goofier and goofier by the second after downing Temple after Temple. We started thinking that since we were in Mexico these drinks MUST have alcohol in them (it surely wasn't the sugar!). Driving back into town that night we sat in the back of my great-uncle's truck. He had a cab over the back but we were able to lay down and open the windows so the air would blow over us. I have never laughed so hard and felt so carefree. To this day, I prefer a good Shirley Temple over any other alcoholic beverage.

Words of Wisdom

Ashley turns five in two weeks and I feel as though she is suddenly maturing at a rate 100 times that. It is so hard to describe in words but every day I see her change in ways I never expected. She has always said the funniest things, but I haven't been so good about keeping track. Here a few things from the past couple of days.

"I am going to go stylish my hair."

"Mommy, do I look fashion?" (This is after she returned from stylishing her hair. She had about 10 hair clips of different colors all put in very nicely)

"I don't have a bow in my hair. I need a bow or I just don't look right." (This was before swim lessons after I had taken her bow out. I am just now realizing that most of the comments are related to her hair. Hmmm..... )

A: "I don't want to grow up, I always want to stay the same size I am"
Me: "Why?"
A: "I don't want to have a baby and have to get a shot."
Personally, I like this philosophy to remain in place until she is out of college and married. Then I will have to work on changing it one day to get a grandchild.

Tip of the Week

When I knew I was going to pull weeds tonight, I started thinking about what I could sit on. Last time I used a towel and that didn't work so well. I know they make all those fancy gardening pads and chairs, but I am way too cheap for that stuff. Finally, I decided to use one of Landen's vinyl diaper pads and it worked really well. You probably already have this tip all figured out, but for me this was a major a-ha moment. These don't come too often, so I choose to celebrate them.

One last thing......

In the next week or so, there will be a little change to my blog.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Random Thoughts

I think I am going to change the name of blog to bon bons, boo boos and bullet points. You have probably noticed I am a big fan of the little dots. My mommy brain (which we have discussed before) keeps my brain from having very many thorough, coherent thoughts. The bullet points allow me to express my thoughts with the least effort possible.

As I mentioned last week, our summer is turning out to be very hectic. I thought summers were supposed to be laid back but ours is crazier than ever. Here are some random thoughts and events from the past couple of weeks.

  • Ashley had her dance recital and she did an amazing job. It was the first year she actually performed the entire number. I was expecting her to not know the routine because when we practiced at home she wouldn't do it right. The dance was a ballet to Tinkerbell music. It was adorable.
  • That same weekend we had recital, we also had some good friends stay with us. Lynette and Todd were our neighbors but moved to Arizona. They were back in town for a wedding and it was so great to spend time with them. The best part was our adults only dinner at Jasper's. The desserts were spectacular. We got a sampler of cherry limeade pie, Butterfinger creme brulee and rocky road brownie sundae.
  • Recital weekend also had my BFF, Darby, come into town. I felt so blessed to have so many good friends in town in one weekend. Again, I was treated to another night out. This time it was just the girls.
  • Parties, parties, and more parties has been the theme. We have been to two birthday parties a weekend since the middle of May. The kids have had a blast, but I am tired. I have been taking them by myself to these parties and it is a lot of work. I now know the party scene around here like the back of my hand - gymnastic party, My Gym party, swimming party, bounce house party, sprayground party, McDonald's party - you name it and we have been there.
  • We had a party this weekend at a new aquatic center. I was extremely nervous about going with the kids by myself. It turned out to be one of our best experiences. They had a long lazy river and I was able to sit in an inner tube, put Landen in my lap and Ashley held on to the side. We floated for over an hour. I would never have believed you if you had told me that was possible before.
  • Speaking of swimming, Ashley is in swimming lessons every day. She likes playing in water as long as she has floaties on and an inner tube around her. What she doesn't like is any mention of going under water. I swear, this child is more and more like me every day. As I child I hated swim lessons and I certainly would never go under water. I was always terrified and consequently never learned to swim. Water is just not my thing unless it involves peaceful floating like above. Therefore, I was bound and determined to make sure Ashley knows how to swim. She has been doing well getting in the water but she still won't put her face in the water. I am contemplating possible bribes.
  • Jessie has his huge board exam next week. He has been studying all day and night for weeks (night being until bedtime not all night!). I know he is ready for it to be over with as I am too. Send good, smart vibes his way. Next Tuesday is the big day. Then he will get a whole whopping 5 days until he starts his 3rd year which is supposed to be even more hours and work. So, send me all your patience vibes. I need them as I will continue to fly solo with the kids for awhile.
  • My fave show, So You Think You Can Dance, is finally into the actual competition part and not just auditions. Now is the time to watch. The Next Food Network Star is also good. Check your local listings for times.

I have a lot more random thoughts but I promised myself I would only write for 30 minutes and my time is up. I am sure your time is up on reading this too. I will write more later, after all I still have stuff to write about Ashley's first sleepover at our house and Landen's obsession with scissors. If that doesn't keep you on the edge of your seat, I don't know what will.

Friday, June 06, 2008

I'm Back....

This past week has been filled with birthday parties, end of year school programs, a dance recital, dance recital rehearsal, friends staying with us, another friend visiting, an end of year picnic, So You Think You Can Dance, the Lost finale and preschool graduation. Nothing like cramming an entire month's worth of activities into one weekend. The fun continues this weekend with two more birthday parties and a baby naming. Perhaps I will elaborate more on these things as the time feels right, but what is most important right now is my tag. Yes, I have been tagged again. This time my wonderful friend and neighbor, Brit has tagged me. I can not let a good tag pass me by. I didn't realize how long this tag was until I just looked at the questions and to complicate matters I am writing in between coats of nail polish. So, forgive me if my answers are not the well-written poetry you have come to expect.

Favorite Person outside of family? This is such a loaded question, I would never even begin to tell my secrets on this one. Right now my favorite person is whoever is reading this post!

Favorite Food? Where do I start? Pizza, Cheeseburgers, Pasta and Cake probably top the list. A good BBQ brisket and cream corn can certainly move me too.

Quirks? Leaving lids off of things is a definite issue I have. For some reason I am always losing lids or just forgetting to put lids on things after I am done with them. I also have a weird thing about my sink. I only like dirty dishes to be set to the right of the sink (not IN the sink). I will then rinse them off and then place them in the left side of the sink. I HATE when dirty dishes are just left in a pile on the side I rinse in. I also have specific sponges for certain cleaning. If they get mixed up, I just throw them away. I am sure J can add to this list. Please feel free to comment.....

How would a person you love describe you in 10 words or less? A caring, sensitive, high-strung, funny, mess.

Any regrets? I always wished I had taken dance longer as a child and did more extra-curricular stuff in high school and college. Also, I wish I had traveled more when I had the chance.

Favorite charity? I tend to donate and volunteer for charities that support domestic abuse victims. I once volunteered at the hospital to help abuse victims as they came into the emergency room.

Favorite blog? To be fair I have to say The Family Guy.

Something you can't get enough of? Hugs and smiles from my kids, and good magazines.

Worst job? I have had a lot of jobs but none were ones I absolutely hated. I guess you could say my assistant buyer job at Neiman's was my worst but it was because of the environment I was in. There were some definite perks and fun experiences to the job but just a few people made me want to quit. It was the only job I have really ever quit for not liking the people.

Job you would pay NOT to have? I would second Brit on cleaning public restrooms - YUCK! You also couldn't pay me to do any kind of trash pick up or sewage job. I know there are people that do these jobs and I owe them a debt of gratitude.

Where would you like to be a fly on the wall? Anywhere some good gossip is going on.

Favorite Bible verse? I have always loved the twenty-third Psalm, The Lord is My Shepherd. During any rough time, I can think about this and know that I am being led to where I need to be.

If you HAD to spend $1000 on yourself, what would you buy? Clothes, clothes and more clothes!

Guilty Pleasure? Naps, Dr. Peppers, magazines and tv shows.

Favorite thing about house? Our neighbors and our backyard.

One thing you are bad at? LOTS of things but one definite thing is sewing and crafting.

One thing you are good at? Planning stuff, not necessarily following through, but the planning part is a skill I possess.

What is one thing you would change about your circumstances? There is nothing I would really change, I have a wonderful life. Of course we always could use more money and time, but who couldn't?

Who would you like to meet? All of my ancestors. I would love to know the stories of how it all came to be.

Real life hero? I have lots of heroes. One I am particularly fond of is my Memaw. She was a single mom and raised four kids all on her own. Despite her many hardships she maintained a strong faith in God and created a strong bond in her kids and grandkids. I also look up to my parents who also were single parents and managed to raise me through some pretty sassy teenage years. Finally, my very own hubby is a hero to me because he is showing our kids what it means to follow your dreams but not sacrifice your family.

What is the hardest part of your job? Having enough patience.

When are you most relaxed? On a massage table right after I have had a pedicure and a facial.

What stresses you out? Everything stresses me out. High-strung and type A aren't just descriptive words I throw around, they are facts of my life.

What can you not live without? My husband, kids, friends and cable.

Why do you blog? To use my brain in a different way. After wiping bottoms all day, I need a little more mental stimulation.

Who do you tag? I tag Michelle, Kristen and Darby. You are IT!