Tuesday, May 31, 2005

My husband thinks he's funny

My Hubs. He thinks he's a comedian. No seriously. He has a dry sense of humor. It kills me when he tries to make a snappy comment. But I guess other people appreciate it.

We were going nicely on the freeway when a bronze Grand Prix passed us. The Hubs decided to pace that driver. Not long after he got behind the Grand Prix.

Hubs: Shoot

Me: What?

Hubs: Okay. It's okay. That cop isjust getting on the freeway.

The Hubs gets over to the right lane (it's a 2-laner) and slows down a little. The Grand Prix also gets to the right ahead of us. The Hubs drives along nervously. I can tell when the highway patrolman gets closer because the Hubs eyes dart to the mirrors checking. I just look ahead.

The patrolman gets even with the Hubs. The Hubs looks over at him. The patrolman points to the side of the road. Yes! The Hubs got snagged! Then the patrolman turns on his lights and goes after the Grand Prix. Interestingly enough, the Grand Prix starts to get to the side of the road not 2 seconds after the lights are turned on. I mean, the patrolcar wasn't even CLOSE to the Grand Prix.

So there we are at the side of the road. The Grand Prix in front. The patrolcar in the middle. We are at the rear. The patrolman gets the info from the Grand Prix first. Then the patrolman walks back to us. We open my window and hand over his license, registration, and insurance cards.

Officer: Sir, do you know how fast you were going?

Hubs: No. I don't. I was keeping pace with that girl in front of me.

Officer: Well sir. The guy in front of you was clocked at 86 mph.

Hubs: Oh. Okay.

The patrolman walks back to his car. The driver of the Grand Prix stands in the dirt next to the passenger door of the patrolcar. The patrolman writes up whatever and chats with the driver. It takes more than 10 minutes before they are done. The patrolman then walks back to us and asks my husband to come up to the patrolcar. The patrolman writes up whatever and chats with my husband. It takes another 5 minutes before my Hubs is back in the car.


Me: What's up honey?

Hubs: I only got a warning.

Me: A warning?

Hubs: Yup. A warning. The officer asked me again if I knew what speed I was going. I told him again that I didnt' know. That I was keeping pace with the girl in the Grand Prix.

Me: Yeah...

Hubs: Then the officer says to me. 'You realize sir that the driver was a guy' And I said 'Well, it looked like a chick to me!' The officer cracked up!

You see...the driver had long blonde shaggy hair (obviously a dye job). My husband thought the driver was a girl. The officer was highly amused by my husband's observation. And only gave him a warning. Dry humor. Who would think that it would get us out of having some higher insurance?

Quick overview of our trip

Our visit to see my family was so much fun. As normal, I'm very tired. Too much activity. Not enough sleep.

The drive out on Friday took a little longer than normal -- almost 7 hours. The Hubs got stopped. Thankfully, Officer Ortega only gave my Hubs a warning. But that stop cost us about 20 minutes of drive time. Thankfully, the kidlings were passed out and didn't notice our unexpected stop.

We celebrated the birthday of Sis#2 on Saturday. We hung out at her house. My BIL's family was there too. The kidlings played with their cousins outside ALL day long. We all took turns playing outside with the kids. We threw footballs and played catch. Even my Mom took turns trying to throw into the football net (she made it too!). The Bear didn't get a nap in that afternoon. He konked out in the truck on the ride back to my Mom's.

We went to Legoland on Sunday. It was my Mom, LilSis, Niece#4 (Sis#2's middle child), the Princess, and myself. We got there about 10am and left about 3pm. We meandered slowly through the place. Really mesmerized by the intricacy of the many & varied pieces. The girls got their faces painted. We had a leisurely lunch. We laughed. We walked. We got tired. Really a good time.

Yesterday, we had a feast at IHOP. We hung out at my parents' house after that. We talked. We played board games. Got more details on the changes that'll be happening in my parents house (home improvements remember?). My kidlings played more with Niece#4 and LilSis boyfriend (more on him on a different post). Around 2pm, we packed up for the long drive home. Uneventful. We made it back in less than 6 hours.

It was a fantastic visit. No stress. Just talking. Laughing. Getting caught up. I can't wait until the Princess and I go out again in about month for LilSis graduation ceremony.

Friday, May 27, 2005

I leave you with photos of the kidlings

So long...farewell...

Have a GREAT weekend!

Here's our little helper stirring up the batter. Note the "Princess" label on the jammies.

Check the Bear out. He's running back and forth in front of the fireplace. He's watching himself!

Here he is saying "No more pictures!" in his babbletalk.

Finally, the Princess is taking a soak in our tub -- pretending she's a mermaid.

Taking a few days off

I'll be gone for the next few days. We're heading out to visit my family.

We're exiting the 105 degree (& now humid) place we call home and sacking out in the mild mid-70s of my parents abode. Woo-hoo!

To Do Before 3pm:

  1. Get the kids' outfits selected
  2. Get the kids' clothes packed
  3. Get the kids' toiletries packed
  4. Don't forget those diapers!
  5. Breakfast/Snack/Lunch - fix it all & clean it up
  6. Vacuum the carpets
  7. Sweep the tiled areas
  8. Clean all the toilets
  9. Wipe down all the sinks/counters
  10. Wipe down all the mirrors
  11. Get any remaining dirty clothes & towels into the laundryroom
  12. Get the Bear to nap
  13. Get my outfits selected
  14. Get my clothes packed
  15. Get my toiletries packed

Thankfully, I was able to get all the laundry washed today. I've got a bunch of clean items to select outfits from. Now why am I cleaning the house before I leave? Because I thoroughly hate coming home to a dirty house. I'd rather just dump the clothing out of all the luggage and deal with that mess. That's enough to get done, right?

Hope you all have a wonderful 3-day weekend with your family and friends!

Thursday, May 26, 2005


I watched "Rob & Amber Get Married" the other night. This got me to thinking about weddings in general.

Wedding party

We had a total of 10 people in our wedding party. 1 ringbearer. 1 flowergirl. 3 Groomsmen. 3 Bridesmaids. 1 Bestman. 1 Maid of Honor. Pretty typical, right? I know people who have only had a bestman and a maid of honor in their wedding party. I know people who have had 10 ladies and 10 gentlemen in their wedding party. I don't really think the number in a wedding party really matters. Just as long as you honor the people in your life. I think the people in your wedding party reflect those people who have been or are currently in your life. People who have watched your relationship to your significant other develop and mature. My Hubs has a male cousin who is getting married next year. The bride? She had 6 bridesmaids and 1 Maid of Honor selected maybe two weeks after getting engaged. The male cousin? The groom? He has his best man selected. That's it. I've heard comments from Hub's side along the lines of the bride has SO many girls in the bridal party. So WHAT! It's her wedding! I'm sure she's been dreaming about who she'd have in her wedding with her since she was a little girl. Don't fault her for knowing this.

Day or night?

I had a late morning wedding with a lunch reception. I opted for that route because I didn't have the funds to have a late afternoon wedding with a dinner reception. I did enjoy my late morning wedding. The only issue was that I had to wake up so early in the morning to get ready. Granted, I did have a hair and makeup lady show up and get me dolled up. But it was still hard hauling myself up out of bed that morning. What was great about a morning wedding is that we got it over with. I didn't have to wait ALL day for the event to begin. I got up. Got ready. Got to the church. Got hitched. Went to the reception. No waiting around twittling my thumbs anxiously.

Who to invite?

When my older sister got married, she invited whoever my Mom told her to put on the list. So did my BIL. This resulted in a HUGE number at the reception. Me? I put my foot down. My Mom had this thing that if people were related to us that they needed to be invited. But what if I didn't actually KNOW these people? She still wanted me to invite them. Granted, they didn't necessarily have to end up coming. But why invite people if I didn't know them? Also, why invited people who have no IMPACT on my life? People we hadn't spoken to in years? Why? Tell me! Why? Much to my Mom's chagrin, I shortened the list she gave me. I let a few families slip by that I would have preferred not be invited though. I let her "win a little" but I "won the battle." On my husband's side? There are just so many blood relatives. Both my MIL & my FIL have 6 siblings each. All the siblings on each side are married. All of them have kids. That's a bunch of family.


No wedding planner here. I organized my wedding. I carried a 3-ring binder with all my information. I grew up in the city where I got married, so I knew what I wanted. I chose the church and the pastor that presided over the event. I chose the reception site. I selected the florist and the arrangements. I chose the DJ. I chose the style of my girls' dresses and a seamstress to put them together. I found a photographer too. I paid for all these things.

Hubs organized and paid for the honeymoon. Or should I say the travel agent organized our honeymoon? Nonetheless, the honeymoon was my husband's responsibility. But it was a fantastic honeymoon. One that I desperately needed.

My parents ended up splitting the cost of the reception with me. My parents also paid for the rehearsal dinner -- we took over a local pizza joint. We had all the out-of-towners on the Hubs' side for dinner so we could spend more time with them. They also hosted a wedding gift opening later on that evening at their house.## Hubs parents? They paid for the reception bar tab.

Small church? Big church?

The question for some is...do you invite a bunch of people to the church or just a select few? Do you invite everyone from the reception to the church? Hard question. The church we had the ceremony at was very large and could accommodate everyone, so we invited everyone to both the ceremony and the reception. It was my fantasy church. It was full of light.

Small reception? Big reception?

I would have settled for a small reception, but with all the family? We had a big reception. 125 people or so. I would have preferred it be half of that, but it spiraled out of control at the end. I could only handle so much before I said "WHATEVER!" But the Hubs and I had a good time, so that's all that mattered. We had a buffet instead of a sit down meal. It was a lunchtime reception so we felt it was appropriate. When certain people heard it was going to be a buffet, they were like "What? Why not a sit-down meal?" I never know what I want to eat when I go out. A buffet allowed each guest to decide what he or she wanted to eat. Granted, the DJ had to coordinate the tables going to the buffet table and all the guests had to listen and cooperate. But hey! If they want to eat, then they have to cooperate. Everyone ended up enjoying the food.


For some odd reason, when my Hubs family gets together there's always alcohol. Beer is the drink of choice. A couple weeks before the wedding, the Hubs mother asked him if there was going to be an open bar. Open bar? At an afternoon reception? We hadn't even thought about it. Now WHO would pay for that? Well, the Hubs ended up feeling pressured into having it. Thank goodness, his parents decided to cover the cost. I seriously have no clue as to WHY having alcohol is so necessary at a family gathering. Can't these people have a good time without it?


Weddings can be a pain in the neck to coordinate. If you aren't being helpful to the bride and groom, then shut your traps. If you aren't paying for something, then your opinion DOES NOT count. If you're not actually contributing your time to organizing the event, then stay out of the bride and groom's way. This way....the bride and the groom can get things done without anyone's belly-aching hanging on their every move. Just enjoy the event when it comes. Again. Stay out of their way. It's THEIR DAY! THEIR DAY! Not yours.

No seriously. Weddings are my all-time favorite kind of party. I enjoy watching a ceremony. I love the fighting of tears. I love the nervousness of the bride or the groom. I like to watch as they walk down the aisle as "Husband & Wife" with huge smiles on their faces. It's an amazing moment. A new start to a new life together.

## Only my Hubs' parents showed up for this. My parents had planned it as another opportunity for the out-of-towners to gather together. Hubs' family? They all made arrangements to meet up at some bar.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005


I've been tagged by Sarangeti

1. Total number of films I own on DVD/video: 15 or so

2. The last film I bought: Lion King II

3. The last film I watched: The Toy Story (this morning)

4. Five films that I watch a lot or that mean a lot to me (in no particular order):

    • Armageddon
    • You've Got Mail
    • Miss Congeniality
    • Starship Troopers
    • Aliens

5. Tag 3 people (this was originally 6) and have them put this in their journal:

HI, I'm ...

It's always so nice to meet new people. Now that we've moved to our HOUSE, the prospect of meeting new Moms, Dads, and kids is an exciting event.

This morning, the kiddos and I went to the park. The same park we went to on Monday morning. This time we got there about 8:30am -- when it wasn't oppressively hot. We stayed just over an hour.

Around 9am, one of the Moms in our subdivision stopped by with her two youngest (almost 5 & 3). I'd left a note in her mailbox to let her know I'd be doing an early morning park visit. So I was happy to see her and her two young ones. Our children had never met so it was nice to see them run around the play area together. She and I finally had an opportunity to chat and get to know one another. It was so nice! I'd forgotten how nice it could be. To just be in the park while the kids play and TALK to another adult. Not having to run to separate the kids because they're fighting. It's funny how the park brings out fantastic behavior in the kids.

As she and I were chatting about the upcoming school term, another Mom overheard our conversation. She broke in with questions about the local schools. The gal and her family had just moved to the area 3 weeks prior and were at a loss as to what to do during the long hot summer. She had questions about preschools and elementary schools. Turns out that her hubby was also a prior military man. So we had LOTS in common.

It's amazing how enjoyable it is to meet new people. Especially people who play an "active" role in their kids lives. During our conversation, each one of us kept active tabs on our kids. Even as we were chatting our eyes would scan the play area to make sure our kids were okay. Each one of us had to break away to comfort and help one of our kids. We didn't just idly chat amongst ourselves and let the kids fend for themselves. We made sure our kids were safe and they weren't causing issues for any other kids. You parents out there KNOW what I mean.

So I'm feeling even more comfortable living in the area we've selected. In Fall 2006, we'll have a new elementary school for our area. Sometime in Spring 2006, we'll have a new HUGE park area about 3/4 of a mile down the road. It'll have a couple baseball fields. A couple soccer fields. A basketball court. A volleyball court. A dog park. A playground. A huge open grass area. A water play area (a bunch of sprinklers). And a library! Woohoo! FUN!

Anyway, when you're at the park with your kids...do you tend to keep to yourself? or do you find yourselves drawn to others?

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Irrational behavior

Movies. They get the Hubs and I talking about stuff. We both react to certain scenes the same way.

There's always a scene that I hate. We've all seen it. When someone is acting hysterical when they are in danger? Like in those scary movies when a character is a blithering idiot when they are being stalked instead of logically thinking what to do? The screaming. The nonsense talk. The out of control crying. DRIVES. ME. CRAZY!

I have to say that when my Hubs and I watch movies or shows when a character is acting hysterical. I'll turn to him and say...

"If we're ever in any danger and I go off the deep end like that? You have permission to smack me."

Yes! I've given him permission to give me a good smack across my face. But ONLY in those type of situations. Situations where he needs me to be calm and think logically. When we're in danger and I need to be lucid. I'd rather have a red mark across my face rather than be eaten, stabbed, or run over.

Wouldn't you?

Now what kinds of scenes in movies drive you crazy?

Monday, May 23, 2005

The heat is on...

We're all healthy.

School is out.

It's hot as heck.

What to do? What to do?

It's 11:35am. We've had breakfast. We've gone to the park. We've gone to the drugstore to get insect repellant. The kids had a morning bath to cool down & clean up. The kids had a snack. The kids are now watching "The Toy Story" to relax.

After the movie, we'll play a bit with their toys. Then it'll be lunchtime. Then naptime. Then...what? Art? Reading?

It's the first day of summer for us. And I'm already grasping at straws as to how to keep busy.

It's going to be a LONG.HOT.SUMMER.


The season finale is tonight!

Don't forget that it starts an HOUR earlier than normal because it's a 2-hour finale.

What'll happen to Tony?

Will they stop the bomb?

Did anyone else realize that the terrorist chick (Mandy) was the one we saw putting that acid into then President Palmer's hand in the first season?

Exciting, exciting, exciting!

Friday, May 20, 2005

Home for sale

There's a house across the street from us that finished construction & closed about 2 weeks ago.

It's for sale.

Actually, it's still on the market but it already has an offer on it. Took less than 7 days.

It's the same floorplan as our house, but they made it so vanilla (read that as "bland").

What's crazy is what they are asking for this vanilla version of our floorplan. They are asking over $100k than the starting price (what it was at the time these people signed their build contract) 9 months ago.

Everyone in the neighborhood is AMAZED by the situation. Hopefully a nice family has an offer on it. That's all we're thinking about...

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The porcelain goddess awaits...

You know how I was playing nursemaid on Tuesday?

When the Princess became sick in the early morning. When the Bear became sick in the late afternoon?

We stayed home Wednesday (no preschool) just to be sure the kids were over it. Home free?


4pm this afternoon? Thursday? I start to feel a little off.

We got the kids to bed like normal. The Hubs and I decided to get to bed by 9pm. He realized I didn't feel well and chose to slumber in the guest room.

And me?

It's 10:45pm. I've thrown up 3 times. Since 9pm.

Turns out it's something that's going around. The Hubs co-worker took her son to the ER yesterday because he was vomiting so violently that there was blood. No harm though. They sent him home to rest. He slept all day today.

My advice? Wash your hands. OFTEN. You don't want any of this....

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Nurse Mommy here...

Note: If you don't want to read about bodily functions, then by-pass this entry.

Remember yesterday's little ditty about how I had planned to go to the park?

The Princess had a bit of a fever accompanying her nauseated stomach. She continued to get sick (about 3 more times) until about lunchtime. But she continued to have a fever. After emptying the contents of her stomach all morning, she did not want to eat the rest of the day. I couldn't blame her for feeling that way either. Her stomach hurt.

"MOMMY! My stomach still hurts!"

I couldn't make the pain go away. All I could do was hold her. I let her know that by tomorrow she'd feel a whole lot better. That she just had an icky tummy and she had to get through it. She consoled herself to it and lay on the couch the rest of the day.

You might guess that it was a TV day at our house. With me as nurse. Watching out for any signs of throwing up. Around 4:30pm, I thought I was home free. Although her stomach still hurt, the Princess hadn't thrown up since lunch time. What I didn't realize that I had to watch the Bear too. That's right. I was sitting on the couch cuddling with the Bear and I dozed off. Next thing I know is that I'm awake and the boy is tossing his biscuits. Being a Mom, I was able to "catch" most of it while holding him, getting up, and making my way to the half bath. He was confused and afraid. He'd never thrown up before. He didn't realize what was happening.


That's what he said to me when he'd finished. He didn't know the right word for it. But he figured that was it since I brought him to the toilet. Poor little one. I had to strip us both down. I was about to throw him into the tub when my Hubs came home. THANK GOODNESS!

The little guy lost it one more time before we put together a quick dinner. Both the Bear & the Princess only had a couple bites. While the Hubs cleaned up the dishes, the Bear lost it again. Thankfully, I kept a cloth diaper over my shoulder so I was able to "catch" most of it. We both still got messy though. The Hubs gave the boy an early bath in our tub, while I took a shower.

Since we weren't sure about how the night would go, we formulated the plan that the kids and I would sleep in the family room. If the two were still going to have upset tummies, then I didn't want to take a chance of any of it getting on our new carpet (especially since I don't have a deep cleaning machine). Our family room has tile flooring with an area rug, so it's a lot easier to clean. The Hubs got the mattress from the toddler bed and set it up next to the sectional. The Princess got to sleep on the chaise part of the sectional. I slept on another part of it.

Needless to say, this morning I am (once again) sleep deprived. The Princess had a difficult time getting to sleep since she took a 2 hour nap during the day. It took her at least a half hour and a bunch of cool water before she was able to get to sleep. Although he went to sleep easily, the Bear tossed all night. Every time he would move, I would wake up. 10:45pm. 11:30pm. 12:45am. Around 1:30am, he was endlessly tossing and turning. Wide awake. His pre-bed dose of Tylenol had worn off. He was burning up. More Tylenol. More cool water. He didn't get back to sleep until 2:30am. Then he woke at 5am -- groggy but unwilling to go back to sleep. The Princess slept in until 7am.

I'm happy to report that both kids ate some breakfast. The Princess has no fever. The Bear is ever so slightly warm. But we're still going to have an "at-home" day. No preschool for the Princess today. It'll be a day full of videos/DVDs again. At least I won't have to deal with anything else though!

They can be so precious!

Just witnessed...

The Princess came into the den just a minute ago.

"Mommy! I'm scared!"

The kids are watching Beauty & the Beast. This is a new video for them. My sister gave us all their Disney videos. These have been in storage since we moved down here a year ago. I broke out a few of them since the kids are sick.

"Well, why'd you leave your brother? He might be scared too."

She runs back into the other room. Not 10 seconds later. The two are running into the den together. Holding hands.

"See Mommy? I brought him here so he wouldn't be scared by himself."

Upon arriving into the den, the Bear turns around. He grabs his sister's hand. He leads her running back to watch the video.

Running and holding hands.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Strange coincidence?

We all have heard that Tom Cruise & Katie Holmes are a couple right? Some might say it's for publicity since they both have summer movies coming out. It's an odd pairing but a very public one.

I just remembered as I was washing the lunch dishes that Michelle Williams is with Heath Ledger. They're having a baby together.

Why am I bringing THAT up?

Katie Holmes and Michelle Williams are both alumni from Dawson's Creek.

Heath Ledger and Tom Cruise were both previously with a pair of Aussie best friends -- Naomi Watts & Nicole Kidman.

Strange coincidence? Plan?

What do you think? or am I overthinking today?

Will we be grilling tonight?

The guys are out back RIGHT NOW! Installing the grill!

Remember WEEKS ago I'd mentioned that we were getting our backyard done? By the landscaper that the builder has doing ALL the front yards? Well, this guy is a joker. He doesn't return phone calls. He's bad at following up. Horrible. Doesn't he realize that I'll be bad-mouthing him to all the rest of the neighbors who have yet to move into their homes? That's at least 70 families. SEVENTY! Talk about bad publicity!

Anyway, they came knocking on my front door this morning at 7am to let me know they'd be working in the back today. Yes. SEVEN in the morning. Knocking on my door.

They prepped the surface. Raked all the miscellaneous junk that was on the ground. Made sure the grading was adequate away from the house. Then they got all the rock into the back. Wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of the stuff. Finally, it was raked into place. They took off for a while. Then they came back about half an hour ago & started on the built-in BBQ.

I called the Hubs to let him know.

Hubs: "Okay! I'll be picking up some buns and hot dogs then. Make sure to get those brats out of the freezer."

Me: "What?"

Hubs: "Well, we'll be grilling tonight!"

Me: "Uh...I won't hold my breath on that one."

Hubs: "Then we'll be prepared for when it does get done."

My Hubs is ever the optimistic one on this project. This 2-day job (this is a quote from the head guy) has turned into a 4-week job. Today marks the end of the 4th week since they started!

I'll post photos later after they've left.

Here's the grill itself:

Here's a view from our covered patio. Note the old-old saguaro cactus to the left. There's that huge space behind our house. Then the street. They'll build homes on that far side of the street. So it's a nice open area outside in the back. MUCH nicer than looking at a brick fence!

The best laid plans

Today, I had planned to go to a park with the kids in the morning shortly after breakfast.

It's a NO-GO!

Why? Because the Princess woke up feeling nauseous. Now my girl isn't one to play when it comes to feeling nauseated. If she's nauseous then something is going to happen.

I was happily passed out (finally) in bed when she woke at 5:15am. The Bear was in the toddler bed (again), but asleep this time (remember yesterday). Thankfully, the Hubs was getting ready to leave for work when he saw her at the top of the stairs. He scooped her up. Placed her in our bed. Got a bucket with a little bit of water and placed it next to the bed. The Hubs thought she'd end up going back to sleep in our bed. But alas, a few minutes after he left a wave began hit her. I got her and the bucket into the family room. I DO NOT the Bear to wake up early today. It's 5:45am and she's vomited once. At least she's in good spirits.

Prin: "Mommy. I think I got bad germs from school yesterday."

Me: "Yes honey. That's what probably happened."

Prin: "But I didn't stick my fingers in my mouth..."

Me: "I know. But maybe one of the toys had bad germs on it."

Prin: "Yeah. That's what it probably was."

I am going to call one or two of the Moms from school to find out if their kidlings have gotten sick. The thing is...they made fresh ice cream yesterday. So I think some of the kids' fingers got into the ingredients. You know? You can't help their excitement when ICE CREAM is involved.

Right now she's on the couch trying to get more sleep. The Bear is still snoozing in the toddler bed. Me? I've got to get breakfast stuff out. Got to get my coffee started.

No park today. I think it'll be a video/DVD kind of day. Hmm...I should get a few new ones out of a storage box... Okay. Gotta go digging.

Hope everyone has a good (& nauseous free) day!

A "neighborly" feeling

It's starting to feel like a neighborhood.

On Friday, the builders decided to hold a subdivision gathering. Simple really. A bunch of pizzas. DVDs in the master bedroom for the kids. A jumper for the kids. Sodas & water. Ice cream bars & ice cream sandwiches.

I can' believe how that gathering has jumpstarted the ties between the neighbors. EVERYONE was invited. All the people who are already living in the subdivision. AND the people whose homes are currently being built. AND those whose homes haven't even been started. Anyone who has signed a contract was extended an invitation. Isn't that wonderful?

So we all went around looking at each others nametags, which included our lot number. Not our street address. Our lot number. This made it easier for us to visualize where others homes will be or are situated compared to our own location. All we had to do was reference the various subdivision maps located throughout the great room (the party was in one of the home models).

It was fun meeting so many people. I found out that a bunch of people stay at home with their kids. We've got a high ranking firefighter with teenage kids. We've got a couple police officers. We have a couple professionals who own their own businesses -- and some do this from home. But what was MOST comforting to see were that the majority of the families were in the mid-30s to mid-40s with elementary age and younger kids. Yes. There were the older couples. There were the newlyweds. But it was mostly couples just like us.

So now I won't be so tentative in waving at cars that are OBVIOUSLY driving around checking out their homesites. I waved at a car on Saturday and it was my new neighbor -- the police officer -- and his wife.

Late Saturday afternoon the kids were getting restless. The Hubs was trying to take a nap. So I took the kids out front to play until dinner. We were outside for about 10 minutes, when the neighbor across the street (who just moved in Thursday) came out into his garage to unpack some boxes.

Neighbor: "You going to be out for a while?"

Me: "Oh yeah. We just came out a few minutes ago."

Neighbor: "Oh great! The kids are getting restless. You mind if I send them out?"

Me: "No problem!"

So his girl (will be turning 5 soon) and his son (3 1/2) came out. They came across the street and the four kiddos played. It was fun to watch. My neighbor's Mom came out and we all talked as the kids played. This was when our new police neighbor came by to check his house.

About a half hour later. Our other neighbor drove by. She and her kids moved in 7 days after we did. I'd seen her around but had just officially met her the night before. About two minutes after she got home, her 1st daughter (6) rides up to us on her bicycle. She introduces herself to our kids. And they start playing. The Mom and the 2nd daughter (1 & in a stroller) came up a couple minutes later. So she got into the conversation. The kids played in front on my house. Us parents? We were across the street standing on the corner.

It was fantastic. It felt so nice to have the kids playing safely together. Watching them start these new friendships. Just like us parents were starting.

It feels good to be in a neighborhood. It's beginning to feel like HOME!

Monday, May 16, 2005

Brings me back...

I listen to an oldies station when I'm in the car. When I manage to get by without the kidlings asking for a Raffi tape. What did I happen to hear on the drive to preschool?

"Shake Your Groove Thing"

It's funny how certain songs will transport you back in time. That song is one of them. Peppy. Funky. Good beat. One song you can definitely dance to.

I recall when I remember hearing this song. Many, many moons ago. A different time. A different place. A different life style. A totally different era.

I was in the 6th grade. Where I grew up, the 6th graders throughout the city would each have a turn and go camping. We were taken up to a mountain observatory site from Monday morning to late Friday afternoon. We stayed in log cabins. Not little ones either. Each cabin could hold 40 occupants. In my case? Forty 12-year-olds. We had 4 sleeping rooms with bunkbeds. And one great room in the middle. Our cabin was called the "Birdhouse" and one sleeping room was the "Bluejays".

It was five days of many new experiences for me.

It was the first time I'd slept somewhere away from my parents. It was the first time I'd been camping. It was the first time I'd been hiking. This was when I had my first taste of macaroni and cheese! It was also the first time I learned how to dance. Disco!

Every moment we had free time in our cabin, we'd crank up the disco music. I actually learned one of those dances. You know, the kind of dances that every knows the moves to. How everyone at a wedding does "the Chicken Dance"? Well, picture about 40 almost teenage girls doing the same dance.

I think it was the last bit of carefree time in my life. (Junior high was about 6 months away with all that new drama) I laughed and I danced. It was such a joyous time.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Sleep deprived but feeling fresh

I thought that being up last night would catch me dragging today.

Nope! I was able to get back to sleep. Probably from 5:45am to 7am. 7am?


My Bear called softly to me. Who could ignore a sweet call like that?

The boy played with a sad looking (ex-helium filled) balloon from last night's neighborhood gathering, while I made breakfast. Pancakes. Sausage. Milk. Juice. And for me? Some heavy duty coffee.

Thankfully, after breakfast the Hubs went to the grocery store with the Bear. The Princess stayed with me. I cleaned up the kitchen (the way I like it to be). Then I took a nice HOT shower. Shaved my legs. Blow dried my hair (I never seem to style it nowadays). Put on my make-up. I'm fresh and clean and smelling nice.

Alas...the Hubs is back with the boy. Got to get those groceries put away.

I do believe we're taking off in a bit to buy the Princess a new bicycle!

Have a WONDERFUL day!

Moments from today

Due to lack of sleep. And the development of my allergies. My mind is tired. My thoughts are fuzzy. I just have enough juice to put together a few things from today:

There's a bridge that the Bear and I drove over. It's got telephone poles on either side of the expanse. There are a couple wires hanging. As I drove across the bridge, I looked up. There was one lone bird sitting there at the bottom loop part of a wire. It sat there alone. Not moving. Facing the west. Like it was taking a moment to greet the morning.

There is one road that both the Hubs and I like to drive down. I drove down it today. It's a two lane road. So no passing at all. It's not normally a busy road though. As I drove down, I looked down onto the scene below me. The old large trees were full of leaves. The large bushes were full of yellow blossoms. In the distance, two large buildings (about 6 and 10 stories) were outlined so clearly in the early morning. All the other structures seemed to be playing peek-a-boo between the trees and the bushes. The hazy clouds were way far to the south...just rising in the horizon. It was a beautiful sight to see.

Watching the Princess and one of the neighbor girls meet up. This is a little girl we've only seen less than a handful of times. They saw each other. Walked up to each other. Looked at each other. The other girl goes in to hug the Princess. They hug. Then they hold hands. They walk off to go play. The innocence and pure acceptance of each other.

Witnessing my son gently tap (twice) the sales rep of our housing development. Yes. He did. I was sitting holding the Bear. He was facing towards my back. The sales rep was trying to get past in the between my chair and something. As I turned as she was squeezing past, I saw the Bear's hand come up as he finished his second tap. She turned around and said "Oh HI sweetie!" Thankfully, she realized it was just him. Hopefully she thought he was tapping her to get her attention to say "hi." [he-he-he]

Going to our first neighborhood gathering and realizing that it's going to be a GREAT neighborhood. It's mostly families with kids aged 12 and younger. Yes. There a couple older couples with no kids. I know of one newlywed couple. There is one family with teenagers (17, 15, &12). But it was mostly parents in their late 20's to mid 40's. Professionals. And a lot of stay-at-home parents. It'll be great when everyone's house is built and everyone is settled in the neighborhood in the next year or so.

Perchance to sleep...

It's 5:17am. The sun is rising.

I think it's time to head on back to bed.


Yeah...I've been awake since about 3:30am. Could NOT go back to sleep.

Oy! And it's the weekend. Time to get out and DO stuff.

Hopefully I"ll be able to get to sleep quickly once I lay down. Another hour would be FANTASTIC!

Friday, May 13, 2005


Every morning I've been waking up sneezing. Like really sneezing. Like up to 20 times. I end up having to blow my nose just to get some relief. Of course, by then I've got gunk that's ready to come out. My eyes are tearing up like crazy. I feel like I've got grit in my eyes too.

Do I have allergies?

The flowers are blooming like crazy here. The purple ones are dying out now because it's getting hotter (in the low 90's today!). The yellow flowers are ALL over the gosh darn place. Yellow flowers on bushes. Yellow flowers on trees.

If it is allergies, I need advice on what over the counter meds seem to work for you. Something that's low dose would be great. Alavert? Benadryl? Claritin? Chlor-Trimeton? Dimetapp? Tavis? Tylenol? There's just so many brands to choose from. And within each brand they've got several different kinds.


Thursday, May 12, 2005

better sleep evidence

Here's proof that the kid is sleeping better as of late.

This is a kid who was waking from between 5:30am - 6am every day -- including weekends!

Time stamp on photo? 7am yesterday

He was STILL passed out cold. The only reason he woke up was because the camera. He probably would have slept at least 30 minutes longer.

Right now? Today? It's 7:15am. He's still silent up his room.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Idiot driving sightings

Sighting #1:

There I was gaining speed to get onto the freeway. I look. It's clear. I took one last look before I commit to entering. Luckily I did. The guy in a construction truck of some sort (AZ Lic#CB-000784) who was in the middle lane got into my lane. Uh. Dude! I'm trying to get on the freeway here. My lane ends. Why did you get into MY lane at that moment? Because you had to get off on the NEXT exit. One mile away.

Sighting #2:

Just picked up the Princess. We were driving westbound in the left lane (2 lanes going westbound). We came to a red light and stopped. A white SUV came up & stopped behind us. How do I know this? I checked my rearview mirror. I saw the front windshield of the SUV behind me. The light turned green. I accelerated. I got to about 7 miles above the posted speed limit. Why do I know this? I checked my speed. Why? Because the white SUV was tailgating me. How do I know this? Because when I looked in my rearview mirror I only the front windshield of the SUV. This person was driving THAT close to me. 7 miles per hour above the speed limit. Space opened up in the right lane as the car that was in that lane dropped back to make a right turn onto some street. The white SUV? Popped over to the right. We approached another intersection. What happened? A red Mazda RX (probably from the 80s) that was going eastbound hung a u-turn. A u-turn that ended in the righthand westbound lane. In FRONT of that white SUV. The white SUV (of course) had to slam on its brakes so it wouldn't hit the Mazda. Ha!

Sighting #3:

If you're lost, please do NOT meander at 10 mph below the speed limit in the road construction zone (posted speed 35mph). I knew we were in trouble when a grey Nissan Sentra in front of me drove through the intersection & rode his brakes all the way across. Then this Nissan crawled through the coned area on the other side of the intersection. Then decided to make a left turn -- without having the decency to get as far left as possible. I couldn't pass him on the right. There was NO room. When he finally cleared enough space (after the slew - about 10 cars went the other direction), he made a u-turn. In a road construction zone.

Better sleep

Have I mentioned that the Bear is now sleeping ALL night in his crib?

Ah yes. Thankfully, the night time issues have worked themselves out. The Hubs gets the Bear lotioned up and dressed in his jammies. The Hubs reads whatever book the Bear selects from his basket. Then the Bear is placed into his crib. No crying. No whining. No problems.

The last couple of weeks he's been in his crib all night. I think it was when we put the toddler bed in our bedroom that the Bear turned the corner on his sleeping issues. Because the toddler bed was in our room, we were placing him in THAT when he'd cry out from his crib in his bedroom. He was no longer allowed to sleep in our bed. No more tossing and turning in between us. No more playing with Mommy's hair. No more sleeping on top of Mommy. No more cuddles. He was IN our room but no longer IN our bed.

I guess he finally realized that he might as well stay in his crib if he wasn't going to be allowed to sleep in our bed anymore. Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!

But let me tell you that a couple mornings this week I've had to and wake up at 7am so that we're not late dropping off the Princess at school!

And yes people. I'm only talking about sleeping through the night. He's in there from about 8:15pm to 6am. The napping business is STILL a huge issue. He won't relax and sleep during the weekdays if I put him in his crib. On the weekends, he'll stay silent when the Hubs puts him down. But at least the boy is sleeping at night. I'm thankful for that!

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Snippets of Monday

The Bear loves visiting stores. Stores with long aisles. When he notices we're in an empty aisle, what does he think to do? Walk/run all the way down. Running. Running. Running! He just loves to run!

Going to PetSmart is easy & free entertainment. The Bear and I browsed through the PetSmart for about 30 minutes. The only reason why we left was because we had to pick up the Princess from school. The main attractions? The red-claw crabs and the snapping turtle. We went back and forth between the two displays about 3 times.

I found the most awesome stuff at Trader Joe's. It's foccacia bread. Stuffed with onions and spinach. I warmed it up for dinner (spaghetti with Italian sausage). And it was yummy! The Hubs didn't like the 'look' of it, so I've got a bunch of leftovers. I know what I am going to eat for lunch!

I still can't believe that a balloon can save the day. You should have seen the joy one single white balloon caused in our household. The Bear was SO proud to actually hold the balloon by the ribbon -- not tied to his wrist. I told him to "Hold on tight to it if you don't want me to tie it." And hold on he did! On the ride home from preschool, the two kidlings tapped the balloon back and forth to each other causing a massive amount of giggling.

Even if you live in a high-end neighborhood, this doesn't mean you're totally safe. My daughter's preschool is in a high-end district. You should have seen the surprised expressions of people's faces when they found out the school had been on "Lockdown" for an hour today. Why? Because the Sheriff's department was searching for a suspect in the area. Thankfully, the Sheriff did post a squad car in the preschool parking lot - which is adjacent to the high school baseball fields. None of the kids were told of the situation (no reason to scare them).

As for you Moms out there? ToysRUs is having a sale of sippy cups. If you buy one two-pack, you get the 2nd package at half price. I know that the Bear's sippy cups are looking ragged, so I bought a slew of new ones. These new ones don't have a plastic valve in them to fiddle with. Plus, the new ones have got a cap so the drinking part stays clean!

I'm thinking that I'm going to drag the Hubs into ToysRUs sometime soon. The bikes aren't expensive. The Princess seriously needs a new one. She's about 43 1/2 inches tall now and is too big for her old bike. Now the old bike? The pink Princess bike? I'm thinking of spray painting it black for the Bear. It's still a good bike. All it needs is a good paint job.

Finally going to the OB...

It's been ages since I've seen an OB. You ladies know how important it is for us to see our OBs every year.

"Well-woman exams"

I don't think I've had an exam since my final check-up after I had the Bear. Yikes! That's just over 2 years ago.

[smacking the back of my hand]

Bad-bad-bad Mommy!

I know that I need to keep my health in check for my Hubs and my kids sake. I just never got around to finding an OB since we've moved down here. Last night (between 12:30am and 3am), I checked the local listings on my insurance website and found a practice of all ladies! Since I haven't got any recommendations from anyone down here, I decided to go the safe route.

It's going to be weird having an exam. It's been so long! But I want to make sure everything is healthy. PLUS I want to check out some new birth control. I'm thinking of the Patch or an IUD. I can't take the Pill anymore. Why? Because to be 99% effective, you have to take a pill at the same time every day. Uh...I've got two kids. There's NO way that'll happen. So if anyone is using one of the two BC methods above, I'd LOVE to hear from you!

I don't discriminate when it comes to OBs. Seriously! My OB in Phoenix was a guy. He was fantastic! There were 3 other men in his practice and one lady. I liked all the men much more than the lady. Go figure!

I found my OB right after I was first pregnant in 1999. Actually, I found him a day after I'd been examined by another OB -- one that I thought would be good. I did not feel comfortable with that first OB. I knew that I had find a new OB fast. There was NO way I was going through 9 months with that first guy.

Now how did I find my OB? I happened to be driving home and saw the office sign for the OB/GYN practice. I walked into the practice just to inquire if they were accepting new patients. My OB happened to walk up to the front desk as I was talking to the receptionist. I had just finished explaining to the receptionist that I was pregnant and was in search of an OB/GYN because I was not comfortable with the OB I'd initially selected.

Receptionist: "This young lady is pregnant and is looking to find an OB/GYN."

OB: "Well, I've got some time right now. Why don't you come back so we can talk."

What? He had time to talk? Right now? I fell in love with that man immediately. I switched to him and his practice with the snap of my fingers. It was the BEST decision I'd ever made. What was great was that I found out a few months later that this guy and one of the other guys at the practice were two of the "best OB/GYNs" in the city.

Monday, May 9, 2005

Yucky feet

When I was young, I had nice smooth skin on my feet. No lotion required.

Since becoming a working adult, my feet have needed extra help. As a parent? My feet need LOTS of help.

Who else has got bad feet?

No. They don't smell. But the skin is SO freaking dry!

Yes. I do live in the desert. But that's not the root cause. My sisters live in San Diego and they too are afflicted with dry feet.

Actually...dry heels. And it's sandal season!!!!

I have found a cure...for me.

About twice a week, I have to scrap my heels. Just putting lotion on my heels was not fixing the problem. It sounds gross. I know it does. It's one of those things with the metal piece on the one side and a smooth piece on the other. The metal piece is like a grater. I don't have to force the metal piece across my skin. I just lightly rub it across for a minute or two. Then I use the smooth side to smooth down the skin. Then I put some heavy duty lotion on my feet. I like to use Serious Skin Care's Sweet Feet. It's got glycolic acid in it (and I think that really helps). Then top it off with some thick socks. I only wear the socks for a couple hours. Then I'm good to go.

That's my cure. Now my heels are no longer ragged looking. Ah! Sandal season!

Sunday, May 8, 2005

Strong love

When the Princess gets busted, she does this drama thing. She runs away and cries. When she comes back with a face full of tear streaks and red rimmed eyes, she says "Do you still love me?"

This breaks my heart every time. Yes. We've had the discussion that even though she gets busted, we love her. We love her no matter WHAT she does. Our love never stops. She gets busted because she's not following the rules. And it's our job to make sure she stays within our rules.

I have to say though that her reaction tonight made me stop and think.

Do the people in my family do things that make me love them less?

I realize (especially these last few days) that I do love my older sister *B* and my younger sister *D* much more than my oldest sister *M*. Why? Some of you might recall this post from last year.

I have to say that since *M* departed from my life when I was 13 that I've never really reconnected with her. Sure. I love her because she's my sister. But I don't love her with the same intensity as I do *B* and *D*. Do you know what I mean?

I don't think I've ever forgiven *M* for her actions. She's never apologized to me about what she did to our family. I know *M* has never said anything to *B* or *D* about it. I don't think she's ever really apologized to my parents. I can see her not saying anything to us sisters, but shouldn't she and her husband have made real amends with my parents? What's crazy is that after they came back into our lives, they still had the nerve to ask my parents for financial help. If it was me? I'd give them a whopping NO!

But if you did what she did, wouldn't you apologize to people? For disrupting their lives in such a devastating manner? I mean, my Mom was crying all the time. I didn't know it then but she was going through a depression. My Dad was being even more strict than he was before. I think that was his response to not feeling in control of the situation.

Through this period of upheaval, *B* and I became close. We shared a room. We'd talk to the wee morning hours about life. Our hopes. Our dreams. Our reality. We shed many tears together in the dark. She was the one person I could rely upon. She was the one person I could open up to without judgment.

What's interesting is that *D* was just a baby when all of this happened. She was too young to know anything. Thankfully. She didn't know the pain that *M* caused the rest of us. Yet, even *D* doesn't have a real relationship with *M*. Isn't that weird?

Yet....I am as close to *D* as I am with *B* (and *B* and *D* are close to each other also). *D* will call me and talk to me about her boyfriend. Her life. Her plans. Her dreams. Her reality. She knows that she can tell me anything. And I'll keep it to myself. She trusts me. She trusts that I'll listen. Without judgment.

Truth be told. If anyone messed with *B* or *D* -- I would be there to defend them both. Like a Mama Bear would defend her cubs. If anyone messed with *M*? I don't think I would do anything. Is that selfish? Is that rude? Maybe. But it's the reality.

Saturday, May 7, 2005

I'm blind...not stupid

I've got bad eyesight. I wear contacts. I've worn contacts since I was in the 7th grade. Not only am I myopic (near-sighted), I've also got astigmatism. This combination does not allow me to wear soft lenses. That's right folks. I wear gas-permeable ones. In other words? Hard lenses.

There are a couple manufacturers that make solution for gas-perm lenses. I like "B" (a city in Massachusetts) the best. The solution is thicker than the others I've tried, which creates a better cushion for the lense to float upon. The particular solution I use is multi-functional. I can soak my lenses in it. It's a daily cleanser. And it's also a wetting solution - what I put on the lense before popping it onto my eyeball. Since it's a multi-functional solution, this allows me to streamline my purchases to one item on a regular basis.

On Tuesday (much to my chagrin) I realized that I was running low on the product. I thought I'd just drop by the corner drugstore on Wednesday (the one that starts "W") and pick some up. I walked in with the Bear and located the item.

$10.87? WHAT? How much?

I couldn't believe it. I knew that price was WAY too much. Did I buy it? Heck no!

I decided to drop by the "Red Bulls-Eye" store on Friday after dropping the Princess off at preschool. They always have the solution. And I was SURE they'd have it at a better price.

$6.84!!! They had just lowered the regular price too.

Can you believe the drug store was asking $4 more dollars for the same product?

I may be practically blind people. But I certianly ain't stupid! Shame on "W" for trying to gouge the people with the bad eyesight!