Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Covering him with kisses

As I was sitting watching a DVD (Children of Men) on Sunday afternoon, the Bear came up to me.

"Mommy, my tummy hurts."
"It does Sweetie?"
"Yeah. I way down wif you."

He proceeded to come in for a hug as I lay back on the cushions. His head ended up cradled in my left arm and left breast, as his body lay across mine. His left arm went up and his little fingers found my hair. He just lay there rubbing my hair between his fingers. He lay there quietly and snuggled as MUCH into me as possible. As if the proximity to me would take away his discomfort. So I held him and held him close and secure.

Within 5 minutes, he fell asleep. Fell asleep in my arms. Like he did when he was a baby. My Big Boy! It was amazing that he fell asleep. He must have been so tired. In so much discomfort.

Instead of putting him down onto the couch immediately, I continued to hold him. I'd watch my movie and then look at him. And kiss his forehead. Kiss his cheeks. Kiss his hands. And then I'd watch my movie for a bit more. And then look at him again and cover him with more kisses. I relished in the moment. Where he was my little baby again. Because those quiet moments like that? Those moments are going to disappear soon enough.

Friday, July 27, 2007

You did what?

I had the STRANGEST dream ever last night.

I dreamed that I got a tattoo. A tattoo! Something I never ever considered getting for myself.

In my dream, I was chatting with the tattoo artist and getting the last bit of tattoo finished off. In the dream, I then looked at where the tattoo was and thought...

DANG IT! Why did I get it there? I'm NEVER going to be able to hide it from the Hubs!

It was a bouquet of flowers about 5 inches in width. On my left FOREARM! How would I ever hide that? I couldn't. As the outside observer watching my dream, I thought to myself "Dummy!"

I know people who have tattoos. I've got nothing against them. But for me (Miss Straight Lace), it's just not something I've ever wanted. So to dream that I got one is just interesting. And it wasn't a small one in an inconspicious place. It was large and on a very exposed area. I truly thought it was weird to watch myself doing what I did.

Now have YOU had a strange dream about yourself doing something you'd never thought you'd do?

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Where they gather to lift each other up

Tomorrow the big conference starts in Chicago.

I wish I could go. But alas, I couldn't afford the trip. Plus I just don't see myself as that caliber of a writer. I write like I'm talking most of the time. I ramble. I stumble. Normally I write with no editing. Just to get my thoughts out. If I overthink it, I'll just end up deleting most of the things I write! So I crank it out and publish it. Yes. I can easily delete any post, but once it's out...I normally keep things up.

I wish I could be a fly on the wall at the conference. All those women gathered there. And to be around so many ladies around me? I think I'd freeze up. I wouldn't know WHAT to say. Tongue-tied. That would be me! Gawking I'm sure.

But I would love to hear what they're talking about. About their style of writing. About what got them started. What inspires them each day to write. Do they go through their day "looking" for something to write about? Gosh, some of these women have hundreds or even thousands of readers each DAY! Golly.....

For those of you ladies who are already at the conference, glad you made it in safely. For those of you flying or driving out? Stay safe. During the next few days, have a BLAST! Take lots of photos. Make sure to post as much as possible....so those of us who couldn't make it can live vicariously through you.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Rainy days...thunder...flodding...congestion...

Those of us in Arizona are in the midst of monsoon season. And this week? It's been grey skies every night.

Thankfully, I work from home so I don't have to deal with the congestion. The Hubs will be starting to have to do that tomorrow though. ARGH!

But with the rainy days have come some beautiful moments.

On Monday afternoon, a storm was headed towards us from the east. The sun was setting in the west. So to the west of us it was sunny and bright. To the east of us were dark skies and low clouds. But as we ate dinner with the sun shining into our kitchen, we watched the rain come down hard. Raining in the sunshine. We could see the streaks of water coming down clearly because the sunlight was reflecting against each one. SO PRETTY!

Then, I saw my first FULL rainbow yesterday. It was a dark rainbow that was well defined against the dark grey clouds behind it. To see the entire ARCH of the rainbow was amazing. I'd never seen one in my 30-something years of life. I made sure to get the kids outside to see it. They didn't realize what an amazing site they were looking at.

"You know, this is the first FULL rainbow Mommy has ever seen."
"Really Mommy?"
"Wow. And I'm only six and I'm already seeing one?"
"Yes, my Sweetie. I'm sure you'll see and do lots of things in your life that Mommy has never done."

Tonight, it actually looks like we won't have any rain. The rain came earlier this afternoon. A ten minute downpour. That was it. Hopefully tonight we won't get any loud thunder, so the kids can sleep in their bed instead of falling asleep in ours.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Much needed vacation

As you all know, the kidlings are gone for a week. They are spending time up with the Hubs family. 3 days with my BIL and his wife, 2 days with my ILs, and 2 days with my SIL. They even spent a whole day with their second cousins yesterday at my ILs house.

What I really like is that the kids just love seeing family. It doesn't matter if its a visit to my side or the Hubs side. They are generous with kisses and hugs. They laugh and smile and have a grand time. This is when I really appreciate them and makes me realize that my two little ones are really good kids.

Of course, the Hubs family has found out quirks about the kidlings these past few days. I've mentioned to them before that the Princess snores. When I talked about this before, my MIL asked if I was going to get her tonsils out. Huh? Uh no! She snores but she's fine. I snored when I was a kid so it's normal to me. They didn't believe me before but now they do. Not only does she snore, but she also GRINDS her teeth. Oh yeah. You can totally locate her in a dark room just by sound! As for the Bear? When he doesn't take a nap, he tends to have a restless night. He sleeps. But he tends to have cry out and toss-n-turn. Some might think he's having a night terror, but he's just dreaming. I think when he doesn't have a nap his brain is over-stimulated from the day. So we expect him to have a restless night when he doesn't nap. But it scared my BIL when it happened the other day. I guess he and his wife tried to comfort the Bear when it happened. But then they realized he was still asleep. This is what those people get for NOT listening to me when I tell them things about the kids.

Not having the kids has really allowed them to have a vacation away from home. We've never been away from the kids for 7 full days. NEVER! And some folks might wonder if we're missing them? I'm not really concerned about them. I know the kidlings are having a great time. So there's no need to worry or be concerned about them. I know they're with people who love them.

But having the kids gone has allowed the Hubs and I to reconnect. And we have. Not just in a sexual way. We're also talking more. About topics we don't get to talk about when the kids are around. About his job search. What cities he's looking for jobs in. About the possibility of moving. About where we'd live if he gets an offer for a job in a different city. Normally we'd wait until the kids were asleep before broaching any of these topics, because we don't want them to know until something is definite. And by the time the kids are asleep we're too tired to really talk about these things and we're both busy trying to finish up the things we want to do for the day.

It's been good to just be a couple for a week. To concentrate my time on my husband. My love. The man who has my heart. And this week I've been focusing on him. To just sit on the couch next to each. With no one trying to squeeze their way in the middle. And we just lay there quietly and relax. It's been nice. It's been REALLY nice.

T-minus 13 days!

The Princess starts school in 13 days!

I just looked online and her new teacher is getting her website together. Hopefully she'll get the supply list finalized and up there by Wednesday so I can buy everything before the weekend. I HATE waiting until the last minute to purchase school supplies. The Princess starts school a week earlier than the kids going to the local public schools. And when the public school kids get their lists? Tar-jay is a mess after the lists get out. UGH!

I adore going supply shopping. I actually have LOVED office supply stores since I was in college. All the paper. The books. The pencil holders. The backpacks. I could spend HOURS in an office supply store. Even when I don't need to purchase anything. So I want to take my time and get the Princess stuff during the middle of the week and the middle of the day so as not to be bustled around by other shoppers.

But I definitely am NOT going to be buying her any new school clothes. It's going to be HOT at least through mid-October. Yes. It'll stay above 85 until then. So she'll continue to wear her summer clothes. Shorts. Skirts. Capris. T-shirts. I will need to make sure her jackets fit though. And get a few long-sleeve shirts. But that's all I'm planning on doing until school starts.

Can you believe it? She'll be in SECOND grade! My little girl. She isn't so little anymore. That much is for sure. And I'm getting ready for her to start distancing herself from me. She's getting to that age. I'm bracing myself. But hopefully she won't drift away too quickly. She'll always be my little girl. Even when she's 30 years old.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Hearing something different

Today as we were prepping dinner, I didn't want to put the TV on the regular default channel it normally goes to (Animal Planet). I checked what was OnDemand and found that the new season of Monk was already on there. I clicked on the second one I saw. No real reason. Just because.

As we tweetered around the kitchen getting plates and glasses, the initial portion of the program played. The part where the "m-ur-der" always happens. Then the theme song starts after that. Since the beginning of the show, it's been a peppy song.

"It's a jungle out there...."

But today? It was something else. We all turned and looked at the tv. We didn't know what we were hearing. Because it certainly wasn't the regular Monk theme-song. It had a deep back beat to it. And it was some other person's voice. A low voice. Not singing in a peppy way either.

"Mom? Is that another LANGUAGE?"

Yes. That's the question that popped out of the Princess mouth.

People. It was a RAP version of the regular theme song. And why was it being rapped? Because the episode was titled "Mr. Monk and the Rapper". And the guest rapper who hired Mr. Monk was none other than Snoop Dog (are there two G's?).

I found it interesting that the Princess thought the rapping was a different language. She couldn't understand what the guy was saying so she assumed it was a different language. Hmmm...we've never listened to rap with the kids. We don't want MTV or anything so she isn't really hip to it.

But it was a hysterical episode. Who would've figured that Snoop Dog (who has also done some advertising for Girls Gone Wild) would appear on such a straight laced show like Monk?

Saturday, July 21, 2007

It's even shorter

No. Not my temper. Although the Hubs would beg to differ on that one at times.

My hair!

Remember that in February I got a drastic cut and was able to donate the hair to Locks of Love? At that time, my hair was mid-neck length. Full on top (with the aid of velcro rollers). Today? It's now more cropped along my neck and shorter on top.

Of course, I ended up buying the hair products that the gal used on me this morning. A bottle of GUTS and some mousse wax. I love the GUTS. It provides a lot of lift to my hair without it feeling like it's got a film on it. And the WAX? She put it in and it looked like my hair had texture and definition. No one has ever used wax on my hair before so I was very impressed with the results. I guess that's what I get for going to a salon (read that as a pricey place) this time around.

"It looks good. It really looks like Kate's."

This is what the Hubs said when he saw me. "Kate" is that gal with 8 kids from "John & Kate plus 8". You know that show? I adore that show. John and Kate are real. They show their flaws and its great to see on tv. She's anal and she admits it. He is laid back and takes everything his wife dishes out to him. It's such a fun family to watch.

Anyway, I really like the cut. It's the shortest my hair has ever been. And I can really see my face. No hiding now!

As for hiding? I'm continuing to try to work out. It might not be every day that I get a good workout in but at least once every other day. I'm trying to do isolation work every night after the kids go to bed. I'm seeing the results in my tummy area. I feel like the front part is becoming more defined. I can see where the center trunk area is getting more defined. The sides of my waist are getting thinner. There's less "overhang" on the bottoms I put on. I can see the definition in my biceps. NO wings to be seen on my triceps. Even my gluteous maximus feels more firm. That part of my bod still needs more work but I can feel that area getting perkier. I got some BACK now!

I'm definitely not running though. That part of my plan is being adjusted. I'm concentrating on walking. I'm just afraid of pushing too hard with running and getting injured. But walking HAS been good. Just getting 30 minutes of walking makes me feel better. A 45 minute walk would make me feel better but it's just too hard to fit that in the morning. I've got to get the kids up and ready for daycare/camp and drive them out. And then be online for work by 8am. It's hard getting my keister up and out the door but I'm trying! I am!

With the progress I've made, I'll definitely be in "good" shape before my birthday in September. And it's going to be a BIG one. I'll be entering into a new decade of my life. Yes. I'll be forty. FORTY! ARGH! But I don't feel that many year. I don't "think" I look that many years. I definitely don't act like I'm that many years old either. I'm hoping that I'm living my life like my Mom. Even at 68 years old, she's got a spark for life. She has more zest for life than my MIL, who is 10 years her junior. And I think because my Mom stays positive in her life and keeps active, she looks FABULOUS! I'm hoping to be like her when I grow up.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Technology Meme

Here's a MEME that's been going around. Play if you want. I'm too tired to think up a real entry of my own...

Cell phones
  1. How long have you had a cell phone? I've had a phone since 1991. My first job out of college was at a start-up cellular phone company. I had a cell phone that was the size of a briefcase. I carried it in my car and didn't move it. Now? My personal cell is a bright blue SANYO flip phone. It's a basic cell. No camera. No big screen. No web access. My work cell is a Treo.
  2. How much do you use it? I use my personal cell once or twice a day. The Hubs and I use our cell phones exclusively. We have no home landline.
  3. Do you get jittery without it? Nope. I can be without my personal one at any time. My work one? I have to have it with me from 8 to 5 every day or else I feel lost.

  1. How many computers in your house? 5 in all. This includes two work laptops (one is broken), 2 personal desktops and 1 personal laptop.
  2. How much time do you spend on the computer in a day? 8 hours minimum for work. Normally it turns out to be about 10 per day for work. That's why I'm spending less time doing personal stuff after I log off from work.
  3. How does the time break down? (work/play/email/blogs/etc.) 99% work / 1% everything else
  4. If your computer malfunctions, what do you do? - I turn off my computer and restart it normally. It's usually as easy as that.

  1. What techno-gadget would you most like to own? What I REALLY want to get is a recordable DVD player. Simple enough eh? Is that even considered a techno-gadget? The Hubs though wants a wide-screen HDTV.
  2. Of those you own (including PDA, iPod, etc.), which would you miss most acutely if you dropped it in the lake accidentally while canoeing? I'd be busted because my Treo is work equipment.
  3. What's something you'll never buy? (Careful with the nevers, though, says this brand new cell phone owner.) A handheld GPS. I like maps.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

It'll be THIS one

The Hubs received an official offer from the local company yesterday. He has since contacted them and accepted the offer. YEAH!

I'm much happier about the ways things have worked out than I'm leading the Hubs to believe. You see, the non-local job was something I believe he SERIOUSLY wanted. Prestigious company. Not having to manage anyone. Having to do work but not having to rely on anyone above or below him to provide him with pieces of the puzzle. You know?

But the fact that he's going to stay in town. Have a plain old 8 to 5 job. I'm really happy.

He'll be starting NEXT Wednesday. So he's got a couple days to go through his wardrobe to determine if he needs any additional items. I'm thinking a couple more pairs of dress slacks. It's a button-down with tie environment. I know he's got plenty of dress shirts and ties, but the slacks that go along with? I'm not so sure. Especially since he's gained a few pounds since he's been home.

HE is happy that he'll have a paycheck. He hasn't seen one of those since end of April. He's enjoyed being at home and bonding with the kids more but he's happy that a paycheck will be coming in about 3 weeks. And since it'll be a 8 to 5 job, he'll still be able to help get the kids up and ready for school. AND he'll be able to be home for a reasonable dinner time. YEAH!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Making Mommy Laugh

The Bear? He's playing with his sister.

The Princess? She IS playing with her brother.

He is holding onto her arm. She is laying on the floor on her back. He is DRAGGING her along and pulling her along the tile floor.



I have NO FREAKING idea!

They're just playing. I guess it's fun?

But this is something I didn't do when I was a kid. Although the kids have picked up some habits that I remember doing as a kid. Like what you ask?

  1. The Bear will sing (or try to sing) any commercial that has a tune & music to it. I used to sing EVERY single commercial when I was a kid.
  2. The Princess & Bear will start humming when they're busy doing something. Normally, I'll do this when I'm cleaning OR in the shower.
  3. The Bear will start moving his head and shoulders to a beat of a song no matter where he's at. On the couch. Out to dinner. In a line. Wherever.
  4. The Bear & Princess will belt into song when the music is playing in the car.
  5. The Bear & Princess will sweep with no arguments. I find sweeping the driveway or front walk very therapeutic. It's a quiet chore. And I see immediate results.

Yeah. They're a couple of funny kids.

But wait....they've been busted by the Hubs. I missed something. I'd better go see what happened. From making me laugh....to making me wonder now!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Because they tolerate each other we take advantage

Today was a prime example of that.

The Hubs and I stayed up late last night. 11pm is late for us. So we were still tired when we got up this morning. But I got to cleaning once I finished breakfast. Cleaned the bathrooms. Got wash done. The Hubs vacuumed upstairs and put the wash away. By the time we ate our lunch, we both looked bleary eyed. I tried to coax the Bear to lay down in the master bedroom with me.

I don wanna way down wif Mommy. I not sweepy!

Geez louise! You'd think he'd be happy to get some extra cuddling in, but no. I've been kicked to the curb. So I lay on the couch. And konked out. I woke up an hour later. A bit drowsy but okay. Feeling much better. I heard the kidlings playing upstairs. But I didn't hear the Hubs. Turns out HE decided to konk out upstairs in the guest bedroom. Actually, he's STILL out. And they're still playing nicely together.

So the Hubs and I were both sleeping and the kidlings played nice together. No fighting. They both knew we were sleeping. Isn't that amazing? They're 4 and 6 and they let us sleep? They ARE good kids. I know this. But sometimes I forget. Like last night at the restaurant. I have to remember to see them in a positive way. That they are good 95% of the time. My little angels.

This one or that one?

The Hubs is in the running for TWO jobs.

The first job is local. It's with a large company that's been around for at least 40 years. Stable place. He'd be in charge of people and interfacing with a bunch of different groups. His 2nd interview for this one is on Monday.

The second job is an hour and a half away. It's with a small boutique firm who fill a small niche. The company will make it's final decision on Tuesday.

And the job that the Hubs is really hoping to get? The second job, which he feels is more prestigious. One that'll help him grow in another direction. One that he feels he can STAY with for a long time. Due to the industry. Due to the group of professionals who are currently working. And for the fact that he won't be in charge of anyone. Less drama, you know? Yes. That's the job he REALLY wants. Even though its an hour and a half away.

The Hubs and I have discussed what will happen if he gets this long distance job. The kids and I would stay put and the Hubs would rent a small apartment. Why? The Princess starts school in 3 1/2 weeks. The Bear's daycare is fabulous. The housing market is down the toilet. We've got houses in the neighborhood that have been sitting for almost a year! It's just bad timing. So we'd keep the house and the Hubs would be gone during the week. He'd drive up every Monday morning and drive home every Friday afternoon. We're hoping that the housing market will recover by next spring. We'd put our home on the market in April or May. And we'll hopefully be able to move during the summer. Just in time for the Bear to start kindergarten.

So until we get official offers from either place, I don't know what will actually happen.

Friday, July 13, 2007

I see them one way

...but other people see them differently.

We went out to dinner tonight. An early dinner. Around 5:30pm. Only to Chili's. No fine dining with the kidlings yet. No. Not yet. We only go places where young children fit in. Chili's. Applebee's. Steak houses. And we always go early, so as not to disturb couples out on dates.

Anyway, we were there drawing and coloring. Occupying the kidlings while we waited for our food. At one point, our waitress came and asked how things were going. I chatted with her for a moment and the Prin started talking to me. I looked at the Prin and raised my eyebrow. Then I finished what I was saying to the waitress. Once the waitress left, I turned to the Princess.
Me: Prin. I was talking to the nice lady and you interrupted us. That wasn't very polite.
Prin: I needed to tell you something.
Me: Next time, please wait until I finish talking to people before interrupting.
Prin: OK Mom.
She and I went on talking and eating. I don't think either one of us thought anything of it. Not until the end of our meal. The waitress came to gather the signed bill stub and turned to me and said in a low voice.
Waitress: I wanted to tell you that your kids are some of the best behaved kids I've seen.
Me: Thank you.
I didn't even realize it until later that she probably had heard me earlier when I talked to the Prin about being interrupted.

I guess I saw a behavior that required attention. But the waitress saw two kids who were not loud and acting up. Amazing how differently we see our children than others.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Car talk

Me: Babe, how was your day?
Princess: It was good Mommy.
Me: Did Daddy pack enough for lunch?
Princess: Yes...
Me: You had your sandwich, your apple, and..."
Princess: Ugh. He packed something else too.
Me: Oh yeah? Was it yucky?
Princess: I thought it was raisins but it wasn't. But I ate it. [sigh]
Me: What was it?
Princess: It was a chocolate CHIP granola bar. I thought it was oatmeal raisin!
Me: Oh boy. I'm sure you were disappointed that it wasn't oatmeal raisin.
Princess: I was! Why did Daddy pack that?
Me: Daddy probably wanted to change up what you normally get. He probably thought it would be a good surprise!
Princess: That SILLY Daddy!

Yes. My daughter was complaining (pretending to be complain) that the Hubs packed a chocolate chip granola bar instead of the regular oatmeal raisin granola bar. Like what kid would complain eating a little bit of chocolate during the day? MY kid. She's crazy.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

What are they thinking

When the Hubs and Bear were playing "tennis" out front on the driveway, the Hubs noticed a "FOR SALE" sign at the house 3 houses up from ours. He immediately sent the Princess back into the house to ask me to check it out on the Internet.

This house has the same footprint as ours. It's got the same exterior as ours. Same shape. Same colors.Even though the house is basically the same, we've never been inside of it. Therefore, that's one reason why the Hubs wanted me to look online.

Here are a couple elements that are different than ours:

  • Light colored cabinets (oak)
  • White Corian countertops
  • Black ktichen appliances
  • Dark tile set on the square in their kitchen/bathrooms
  • Basic lighting & fixtures in their bathrooms
  • Dark accent walls in the kitchen, living & family rooms
  • Carpet in their living/dining room
  • AND they've got a pool & spa that take up their entire backyard

The Hubs and I just about choked when we saw their asking price. TOO high! Compared to the other houses that are SITTING this house is priced way in the stratosphere. I know that the house at the top of the hill (up our street) sold a couple months ago. It also was the same footprint as ours. It did have strong paint colors on its walls AND it had a huge backyard with a pool/jacuzzi. But the rest of the finishes were similar to ours. It went for a pretty penny. Much along the lines of what this other house is "asking". So that's probably why this new "for sale" house is priced the way it is.

We're curious to find out if this place 3 houses up will sell. And if it'll go quick or sit.

This kind of info will be VERY important for us. We may potentially be in a position to move in the next 6 - 12 months. but this depends on who ends up calling the Hubs in the next 5 - 8 days.

Monday, July 9, 2007

And then there were two in the bed....

...and the little one said roll over, roll over...

On Saturday night, much to our surprise, the Bear announced that he would be sleeping upstairs. With his sister.

Most of you already know that the Bear has been sleeping in the toddler bed situated in the master bedroom for months and months. We decided to let him sleep there instead of having him walk down the stairs and onto the couch in the family room (next to our room) in the middle of the night. And our stairs? It's a straight shot down with tile at the bottom. So we were worried that he'd fall down one night. Somewhere in these past months, the Princess decided to start sleeping in her brother's bed. And has been there ever night since.

Bear: I sweep upstaiws with Sissy.
Me: You are?
Bear: Uh-huh. I sweep with Sissy.

So we got the kidlings ready for bed. The Prin was sleeping on the north left side of the bed. She used the sheet and comforter. The Hubs placed the Bear's pillow and firetruck blanket on top of the comforter on the south right side of the bed. And they slept all night.

The Bear didn't wake up until a little past 7am on Sunday morning. That is UNUSUAL for him. He's normally up at the crack of dawn (every day). So he slept in. Yes. In our house, 7 o'clock is sleeping in for the Bear. But it was good. He was in his bed. That's a positive step to getting him out of our bedroom.

Much to our surprise last night (Sunday), the Bear told us again that he'd be sleeping upstairs with his sister. Okay....fine. We got them ready for bed and put them in the same positions. And it's 5:52am and they're both still upstairs.

Hopefully, we'll be taking the next step in a bit. On the Bear sleeping all alone in his bedroom. But we're in no hurry. The Prin doesn't mind either. It's her baby brother. Her bubby.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Fun in the sun

Yesterday it wasn't so sunny.

Actually, during the day it was. But by 5pm? It was stormy out. It was humid. I could smell the moisture in the air. Our first monsoon storm of the season blew through town. It's amazing how the monsoons blow in. You can see the clouds coming in. Like a steam roller. You can see the dust in the air. Gust of dirt and debris. The trees and bushes start swaying. The lightening becomes more visible. We've got many more storms to get through this year.

Yesterday's storm was a short one. We just got enough to get the ground wet. Of course, it evaporated in no time. But the biggest change was the temperature. Around 4pm, it was about 105 degrees. Around 5:30pm when we drove out for some dinner, it was only 71 degrees. SEVENTY ONE! Thankfully, by the time we got home the clouds had thinned. No more rain.

Since it was nice and cool outside, we all stayed outside and played until about 7:30pm. We saw a few other families enjoying the cool evening as well. When we were out, I noticed my potted plants were dry. Actually, dried up. Those poor little plants were done. Toast. There was no recovering from the state they were in. It was bad. Really bad.

So this morning, we headed out to Target and purchased replacements. I ended up picking up 4 plants. Two of one kind and two of another. So both my front door potted plants match. I made sure these new items were FULL SUN plants. I don't know the specific names of them right now, but one had tiny lavender buds (but it wasn't a lavender plant). The other one was more of a succulent and had white/pink/yellow flowers on it. I put those replacements in right when we got home. The kids helped. I had them put on their gloves and put the planting soil in the pot for me. I also had them fill up the watering can so they could get the soil nice and wet for the new plants. I have two pots, so each kidling was responsible for their own pot. That's the ONLY way we can get things done without arguing coming into the picture. Equal! Anyway, it didn't take long to finish. And now the pots are sitting under one of our Palo Verde trees out front. I'm going to keep the pots there at least until Monday, so the plants have time to get acclimated in their new "home".

I'm really glad the kidlings like to help out with yardwork. They do! If I'm putting in new plants? They're right there with their gardening gloves. If I'm sweeping leaves, they grab the extra brooms. If the Hubs is pruning the trees, they're right grabbing the fallen branches and putting them into the trash. SERIOUSLY? It's funny to me, but it's a nice way for all of us to do stuff together. They just love being out there. So if we ever were to move to San Diego or somewhere that's not scorching hot in the summer, I'm going to have a nice garden. One that we can work on ALL year round. But that's a dream that you all already know I wish for.

But what kind of stuff do YOUR kidlings like to do that you're surprised about?

Friday, July 6, 2007

All in the name of looking decent

I normally stay up late (for me it's late) every weeknight to get extra work done. Housework sometimes. But mainly it's my office work stuff that keeps me up. Since I get to sleep late, I am not the best in the morning. So the LAST thing I want to do is get ready for the day. I know I work in my home office on my computer, but I do step out in the morning at face the world. I don't want to embarrass my kids with eye-boogies and smelly breath.

So what do I do to combat the rush-rush of getting the kids ready AND get myself ready? I get myself halfway ready at night.

I take a nice long leisurely shower at night. Shave my legs. Pluck my eyebrows. Wax other parts if necessary. But it's how I look AFTER my bath that makes the Hubs crack up. About once a week, I put on a deep-cleansing mask. You know those clay kind? Mine is a light green color. And I keep it on for about 20 - 30 minutes. Yes. THAT long! It helps draw out any kind of stuff lingering in my pours. And almost EVERY night I walk around with velcro rollers in my hair. 4 HUGE yellow ones and 2 medium blue ones.

Now that my hair is short, I have to add some body to it. I keep the rollers in my hair for an hour or more in the evening before I sleep. I pull them out before I get into bed. I don't even touch my hair after I take out the curlers. I sleep. And when I wake up? The "body" is still there. I just put some mud paste into my hair and shape it. Even if I don't have the time or effort to put on any make-up, at least my hair looks good! Seriously. Last night I didn't put the rollers in. And my hair looked HORRIBLE. It was flat. It was kinked up in the wrong place. I felt frumpy all day. Having my hair in decent shape makes me ready for the day. Add having a good hair day with a little powder and some light lipstick? I'm OFF to tackle the world.

Now what's YOUR must-have get ready routine to get you out the door? Mascara? Blush?

Monday, July 2, 2007

Daddy & Son Moment

Every evening, I get the Princess ready for bed. I help her wash her hair and all that. We chat about her day.

While the Princess and I are in the bathroom, the Hubs and the Bear normally wait in the hallway outside the bathroom. They usually lay down on the carpet and wait for us to leave the bathroom.

This evening, the Hubs was laying on his back with his eyes closed. The Bear was laying with his head on the Hubs tummy. His little face towards the bathroom door.

Bear: Daddy!
Hubs: What buddy?
Bear: I hear yow tummy!
Hubs: Oh yeah?
Bear: Uh-huh! It goes glug-glug!

Then the kid started busting a gut laughing at the sound. Glug-glug!

That was the funniest thing I've heard today.

Being a man

On Saturday when we went to the mall, I saw an interesting interchange between a son and his father.

We were walking out of Nordies on the second level. As we walked, my eyes drifted toward the escalators which were about 20 yards away. I saw this 6 or 7 year old boy at the top of the down escalator. Then I heard...

Come on Seth!

I looked and saw a man already going down the escalator. I saw the boy put his foot down and then he picked his foot right back up. He'd put his foot down right where the stairs split. He let out a distress sound.

Come on Seth! Let's go!

The man was already more than halfway down the escalator and it didn't look like he was making any move to go back up. I'm sure that Dad was thinking that it's ONLY an escalator and how hard could it be? Be a man! But the kid only looked around 6 or 7. How much of a man can a kid be at that age? But it can be a nerve-wracking thing to do on your own. The Hubs always holds the Bear's hand while the Bear holds the rail. And we make sure he understands when to step. The Princess is 2nd on after our boys. Then I take the caboose position of last in line. Just in case. We do the same for up and down escalators, as well as elevators.

Anyway, that distress sound the boy made was something I'd heard before. When the Princess or Bear aren't quite sure of how to do something. It was a sound of being nervous. Of being anxious. Of being uncertain. And I couldn't walk away. I let go of the Princess hand and asked her to wait for me.

As I walked toward the boy and said...

Me: Hey Buddy, let me help you.

I didn't want to scare him since I was coming up behind him. His right hand was on the right rail with the escalator belt running through it. So I took his left hand gently and held it at shoulder level for balance.

Me: OK. One. Two. Three. Step.

And he stepped. Right fully onto one step. And then I let him go. And I walked away.

I hooked back up with the Princess, who smiled at me when I approached her. I smiled back at her. Held her hand and continued on our way.

Me: What's that smile for Prin?
Princess: You helped that boy.
Me: Yes. I did.
Princess: I'm glad you did Mommy. He looked upset.
Me: I'm glad I helped him too. He really was sad, huh?
Princess: Yeah, he was.

So the Princess understands. We just help others when we can. It was 30 seconds. And it helped that little boy. Knowing he wasn't being abandoned by the world. Scared at the top of that escalator. That someone helped him to make it through that little moment. That people do care. And that's an important lesson that I hope to continue to teach the Princess and the Bear. We never leave anyone behind.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Summer gathering

We attended a family gathering yesterday at the Hubs' cousin Ray's house. A bunch of people were in town for a visit.

1. The Hub's cousin (Brian), his wife (Wendy), and his 3 kids flew into town for a week.
2. The Hubs' grandfather and his Aunt C were going to attend the Hubs' new-found cousin's wedding in Vegas on Wednesday, so they decided to fly out early and see the family.
3. The Hubs' Aunt F and her husband also decided to come out for a quick visit. Aunt F is Brian and Ray's Mom.

Anyway, like I said we drove up to hang out at Ray’s house. Ray and his wife just had a new pool finished in their backyard a few months ago. Since there were so many kids (Ray's kids, our kids, Brian's kids), a pool would occupy the kiddos while we all talked and caught up with each other. I sat with the Ray and Brian’s wives catching up on all the happenings. All 3 of us are "married in" to the family, so we all get along. As we were chatting, I suddenly got hit with a BLAST of water on the side of my head. Ray had one of those water guns and it shot out the SIDE instead of forward. Oh my gosh! He was SO apologetic. He knew that was NOT the best thing to happen. He came over and told me to get him back. I didn’t. I told him it was fine. I just combed my hair back with my hand and shrugged it off. Ray went inside and told the Hubs what happened.
Ray: I’m so lucky to be alive!
Hubs: Why?
Ray: I just hit Grace with a blast of water. I thought it was set to go forward but the side nozzle was open!
Hubs: Oh…you better stay away from her the rest of the afternoon.
And he did give me a wide berth the rest of the afternoon. Too funny. Now if he actually hit me in the face? I think I'd have to push Ray into the pool!

And folks, it was a hot day. I mean HOT! As the kidlings were swimming, I was sitting outside in the shade. I was not in the pool. I am not comfortable going into a pool when I’m “being a woman”. Anyway, I was there for a while and KNEW it was the Hubs turn when...I started to feel beads to perspiration developing in between my breasts. Yes! It felt yucky. I knew I needed to sit under an A/C vent. The cool air. Ahhh! I went in and called to the Hubs. “Your turn!” I went in to the powder room right away. I pulled up my shirt and stuck a piece of tissue paper between my “soft cushions”. It was hot. It was THAT hot. Whew!

And I heard Brian have the funniest conversation with his son, who is now 5.
Brian's son: Daddy. Did I eat enough sandwich? (he'd eaten about 1/3 of it)
Brian: Let me see.
Brian's son: Look!
Brian: Try a little more.
I looked at Brian and started laughing.
Brian: I know it's kind of ironic, eh?
Me: I started thinking about that story of how you asked Aunt P about what "shape" the pasta was before you could decide if you liked it or not.
Brian: Oh gosh. Since I was so picky as a kid, I always think of it as payback that my kids are picky.
We both started laughing at that thought.

But the FUNNIEST moment during the visit was when we were leaving. We all go around and give hugs/kisses to everyone. The Bear followed the Princess around the family room seating area. Aunt C was looking away when the Bear came up to her. He put his hands on her jawline and turned her face towards him and gave her a smackeroo. He did it gently but with conviction. We ALL got a kick out of that one.

But it was REALLY nice to see the family. We'll be seeing some of them again this week. The Hubs' grandfather and Aunt C are coming down with my MIL, FIL, and SIL on Wednesday for lunch. We'll be hosting a 4th of July lunch for them. This way they can head home before it gets dark. We all know how there are drunk folks that always try driving after evening BBQs and firework celebrations. The Hubs' grandfather and Aunt C have never been to Tucson before, so this will be there first time down here to see where we live. I still need to figure out everything we want to serve.

So what are YOU going to do for 4th of July?