Sunday, September 30, 2007

nuttin but fun

Friday night King and I hosted a costume party to ring in 40 (as someone else). He was a retired, now-living-at-the-beach New Yorker named "Mel" complete with black knee socks, sandals, a Hawaiian shirt halfway buttoned, a sun hat and opaque white sunscreen on his nose. All he was missing was a gold necklace with an Italian horn charm.
I was the Baroness d'Antiquity (aka Lipoma Dutchess) and donned a powdered wig, pearls, and period costume.

Many of the people we invited ran into babysitter problems, which makes me sad, because it was truly a fun night and we missed their presence. Among those who were able to make it: The scariest woman in the world (I'll give you three guesses), a purple-headed witch, a 1920's flapper, the Count and Countess Dracula, a Geisha, a dirty old man (I'll leave it at that), a pregnant woman and the mailman that made her that way, a soccer mom and dad, a pirate and his wench, Bat Girl and a harried, pregnant, cigar-smokin' housewife with a baby attached to "her" chest, Shaggy and Velma, Fred and Wilma Flintstone, a ball-and-chain wife and her husband who came as "chicken, cord on blue", Mona Lisa and Leonardo da Vinci, "Dumb Ass and Smart Ass" (donkey t-shirts with Smarties/Dum-Dum candy glued to them), a gypsy and her friend (who came with her because her husband was at home with a sick kid), and finally, a "man who was dressed just like our friend Terry".

Several of our friends brought us wine (yum!) and my friend with the Mona Lisa smile brought me a tiara to wear in my new laundry room.

It was the first time we had hosted a party in our newly-landscaped back yard. I always worry a little that people won't have fun and will want to go home early and will "have something else going on" the next time we invite them over. I think this taps into feelings of inadequacy that are left over from me at a younger age. Hopefully, now that I am nearly a week into being fourty, I will be able to discard those thoughts and sally forth into this new era.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

one day in the life of a mom

Check out this video... so funny.
William Tell Overture for Moms

I felt like cheering at the end!

remind me later

Something I saw one too many times this morning gave me reason for pause.
The next time I am in the market for a used vehicle, remind me to ask the following questions:
-how old are the tires
-did you keep up with all the required maintenance
-has the car ever been involved in an accident
and most importantly
-has a man ever used his electric razor and shaved his face while driving this car?!?!?!


Monday, September 24, 2007

our new babysitter

Well, in less than a week, Mr. Fixit has outdone himself! In the first picture, there is a yellow glare from the camera flash, but it is the only way I could get the whole room. The second picture, on the right, shows more of what the room actually looks like. We spent the better portion of this afternoon and evening getting all the crapola put into the cabinets/throw away/put into the yard sale box.
I have actually done three loads of laundry too! I just can't imagine how the clothes are getting clean without using much water, but they are so nice when I take them out of the dryer, so I'll just assume they're clean. Hmphf. High effeciency washer.
You know how with a top loader, when the wash cycle finishes, you take the clothes out and they are shaped like the inside of your washer.... well, when these come out of the washer, it's like the magic frontloader fairy shook all the clothes out for you. That way, once they are finished in the dryer, they have less wrinkles. So cool. Also, we might as well sell tickets to the "laundry room show". We've been standing in there staring at the washer while it does its thing. As long as number 4 doesn't press any buttons, we will be calling it our new babysitter.
On a totally separate note, I have been 40 for 17 minutes. Oh wait, 18 now. What "they" say is true, time flies when you are older. That minute went by way too fast.
So, back to the new laundry room.... I decided for a couple of reasons to go with white. The first reason is that we had a full gallon of white satin paint. The second reason is... well, I wouldn't have to spend money if I just used what I already had. I was thinking about using a color that I had used when we restored the house, but what if I ran out and had all but a 2 ft section painted. I would have been mad.
I've always dreamed about being in a white padded cell anyway, so this might be as close as I can get - without the actual application of the straight jacket. Fine with me.
For the record, I was thinking about painting the walls black. No, wait, just think how beautiful a piece of artwork would look against it.... see? Anything at all would just POP against the black. Anyone who actually knows me will tell you I'm not afraid of color. After all, its only paint. For another $10 you can start over. But when my sister reminded me how much light black walls would absorb, I threw in the towel. I like the white. I really do.

Been 40 for over 30 minutes now. Heavens to Betsy! I'm going to bed.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

This is a picture of what my laundry room looked like Monday. The shelf with all the crapola was behind the door.

Mr. Fixit (yes, the one from Richard Scary books) is supposed to come tomorrow and put up sheetrock over the wooden slat wall that we've lived with for 6 years now. He will board up the window (despite how it might photograph, it's really a very cheap, sad, little window.) and vent the dryer through an opening in it. The outside of said boarded-up window will have a "Bahama Shutter" so we can avoid having to stucco it.
My plans are to have a front loader washer and dryer stacked on the left side and a big ol' cabinet on the right and at the top of the washer and dryer. There will be nothing behind the door. 'Cept maybe a great piece of art. I am going to also have three recessed lights. My mom suggested a crystal chandelier, which I would do if it didn't interfere with the opening of the cabinet doors. I even have a tiara I could wear whilst doing the laundry. Alas... it has to be the recessed lights.

Here is what the room looks like at 11pm on Tuesday night.

I am trying very hard not to get too excited, just in case Mr. Fixit has a mix-up tomorrow. I'll keep snapping pictures and updating the process. I told Fixit Fox that I would like the cabinets to be a creamy white, sorta like Mayfield vanilla ice cream. I am thinking about Tiffany Box blue for the walls. But, I'm not completely sold on the idea. I am open for suggestions. I may have something totally radical in mind - my favorite color. There isn't much wall that will show, so I think I can get by with it. Besides, artwork would look fabulous against it. I'd feel like I was doing laundry at a museum each day. I dunno though. King would have a conniption. Although he does know by now what a risk-taker I am when it comes to paint color.
Stay tuned...

Saturday, September 15, 2007

uh oh

Told ya so.... guess what broke last night? Here's a hint: read the last post.
I will probably have to frequent the laundromat for a little bit, but hopefully this will translate into a new washer/dryer and updated laundry "room".
The traditional 15th wedding anniversary gift is supposed to be crystal or, for the more modern choice, a watch but I will take the appliance option.

Friday, September 14, 2007

this can't be good

Our washing machine has been making an awful noise for the past week. Sort of a cranking noise. I know it can't be a good thing. Even if it is nothing serious, it is at the very least an unnecessary, obnoxious noise. Something I have plenty of throughout my day.

Am I going to do anything about it? erm... no, I don't think so. You wanna know why? Because calling a serviceman would be at minimum $65 just to walk through our door. Then there is no telling how much it would cost to fix it.

Besides, if it breaks, I am going to jump up and down and beg for these:

Thursday, September 13, 2007

these hands

Once every couple of years, King really moves me by allowing me to see his emotion through his creativity. One Mother's Day, he wrote me a poem that expressed his love by incorporating characteristics of each child... it was pure genius. Well, he got me again last night. Look at the front of this card he made for me for our anniversary.

Is that not the sweetest picture? He got #2 to snap a picture of his hands as he held #5 in his arms.

"These are the hands..." refers to an exercise we did at the Engaged Encounter we went to before we were married. I remembered thinking "this is going to be so lame" when we sat cross-legged facing each other. My soon-to-be groom held my hands as the weekend's leaders read, "These are the hands that are smooth, young, and carefree that will hold yours as she gives you her pledge to love you and accepts your ring on your wedding day in committing to you all the days of her life." They went on describing the role of my hands through various stages of married life.

Then, it was my turn to hold the hands of my fiance. The leader started:

"These are the hands, young and strong and vibrant with love that will hold yours on your wedding day as he promises to love you all the days of his life.

These are the hands you will place with expectant joy against your stomach, until he too feels his child stir within your womb.

These are the hands that look so large and clumsy, yet will be so gentle, as he holds your baby for the first time.

These are the hands that will work long hours for you and your family.

These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes - the tears of sorrow and tears of joy.

These are the hands that will comfort you in illness and hold you when fear or grief rack your mind.

These are the hands that will tenderly lift your chin and brush your cheek as they raise your face to look into his eyes - the eyes that are filled completely with his overwhelming love and desire for you."

I don't know about anyone else in the room that day, but my face was soaked with tears by that point, just like last night..... as I read the inside of the card he made. By hand. Those hands!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

you mean it hasn't been forever

King and I have been married 15 years today.
Our wedding - what a great day that was. We felt so grown-up. So... married. What babies we were!
Just like now. Even though it seems like OK, NOW we are grown, I know that in 10 years (and we will have been married half our lives) we will look back and say how immature we were.
In any case, "Babe", Happy Anniversary! If I could do it all over again, I wouldn't change a thing.

Well, nothing except my choice of wedding gowns.... and maybe those awful bridesmaid's dresses.

now here's something to smile about

Took #3 to the orthodontist this morning. What a wonderful place! First of all, the waiting room was calm. Serene. Yet very kid-oriented. There was a huge fish tank (#4: "ish! ish!") and at the end of the waiting room, there was another room which was a kid-sized arcade. Way fun! The sad part is that we didn't have to wait very long. Once you get past the desk, into the inner sanctum of the office, it was even groovier. Everything was open and bright and cheery. There were birds (#4: "eep-eep") And a gong! Kids get to ring it the day they get their braces off. Number 4 thought this was "marvey". (I know, the seventies called and said they want their adjectives back!) A friend of mine who works there - whom I shall refer to as "St. Michelle" - said, "Here, let him come with me," so that I could carry on a conversation with the doctor. (I smell bonus pay!)

Once number 4 was otherwise occupied chirping and gonging, I was able to focus on the appropriate child. Doc-Doc thouroughly examined 3's mouth, reviewed her x-rays, and concurred with my unprofessional dignosis: Let's wait. Watch the growth pattern, which, though crowded, isn't all that awful. She still has a bunch of baby teeth which need to come out.

Whew! I thought I heard a sigh coming from inside my purse, but I couldn't say for sure if it was my checkbook or not.

As we were preparing to leave (I needed a sponge to soak up my daughter, who had just been morphed into a sad, little puddle of disappointment because she wouldn't be getting braces any time soon) the girl we were working with handed us 5 coupons for free Chick-Fil-A kid's meals.

All that and a free orthodontic consult.

Dire Straits' lyrics "money for nothin' and your chicks for free" are floating through my brain about now.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

happy birthday, my love

Today is King's birthday. He is 40. Unlike the brat that I am being about my big day in exactly two weeks, he did not kick or scream or stomp his feet. Patient. Kind. My hero. Forever and always.

Friday, September 7, 2007

the moron in oxymoron

Yesterday, when I was heading to the car after my workout I noticed that someone had stamped out their cigarette just before going in the gym.

"I do care about my health, therefore I am going to work out at this gym."
"I don't care about my health, therefore I smoke."

Maybe this person had dual personalities. Inner conflict. Perhaps s/he thought that the good that was being done inside the gym would counterbalance the bad being done outside of it.
All or nothing if you ask me. When I smoked I couldn't have cared less about my health or exercise. In fact, I used to scoff at folks who would walk this fairly steep grade of a road in our neighborhood. hmmph.
Health- the slowest possible rate at which someone can die.
However, when I decided to quit, I did it for good. Made a promise to God. I only asked that He keep the cravings at bay. Done deal. Thank you, Jesus!

Now, with all of that said, don't even try to pin me down on why I will celebrate a successful week of being good on a diet with a chunk of birthday cake. (NOW who's the moron?!?!) If you look up "self- destructive" or "fear of success" in the dictionary, that will be me waving at you.

planes, trains, and automobiles

.... a list of the three most favorite things of a 2-year old boy.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

our loss

but Heaven's gain:

Now joining the choir of angels and saints who sing unending praise to the Lord: Luciano Pavarotti.

Pavarotti had an infectious smile, but I can only imagine how radiant it is now, as he looks upon the face of Jesus. I thank God for sharing this incredible talent with the world.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well

Remind me of this next week, after the orthodontist consult. Where we find out just how much #3's mouth will cost. So that she will never have to be called "Jack". As in Mr. O'Lantern. And remind me again in the spring when we are planning to have the peeling paint on our house removed and the surfaces repainted. And each time something huge comes up and I want to stick my fingers in my ears and sing "nah-nah-nah-nah-nah-nah" pretending not to notice the "elephant in the room".

No matter how frustrating it is to be a stay-at-home mom, whose only contribution to the family buget is shopping at Goodwill and buying meat when it is on sale, I know that all will be well. I am inspired by the optimism of Julian of Norwich. I have known for quite some time now, God has me in the palm of His hand. He has never turned His palm upside down and laughed as I tumbled out into an abyss. He never will.

So, even though sometimes King and I may feel a little panicky, as in, "Oh my stars, where are we going to get the money to pay for THAT?!?!" In our hearts we know that there is nothing to fear.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

ew, gross

Last night we had some friends over for dinner. Earlier in the day, when we were planning the menu, I said that I would do the kid's menu... hot dogs, tater tots, salad, and dessert. I knew I had a lot of jello and pudding. I thought I even had some Dream Whip. They have four kids, we have 5, so I figured I could whip up something fun, tasty, and kid-friendly as a sweet little after dinner treat.

After peeking in the cabinet, I decided to make a cherry/vanilla layered concoction. So, I got busy making all the ingredients. First I made the jello and poured it into my rectangular Pyrex dish. Into the fridge it went to set. Next up, the pudding. Pop! Into the fridge it went too. Fast forward an hour or so, after both were no longer in a liquid state. I spread the pudding on top of the jello layer then made the Dream Whip. I figured we'd just spoon it on top of each serving.

After dinner and a little playing, the kids wanted to taste my cherry vanilla surprise. As it was being spooned onto dessert plates, I realized this dessert looked a lot like......... well, infection.

All of the adults were cracking up. I was so thankful that the kids (none of which has ever lanced a boil) were all raving about how yummy it tasted. File this under "Whew, I'm glad I didn't experiment with cherry/pistachio!"