Monday, December 29, 2008

MISSION: Monday - FINAL Grand Prize Entry!!

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THIS IS IT, AGENTS.

Today is your Last Chance to enter the Grand Prize Drawing, and the winner of the Grand Prize will be announced, and their blog featured, next Monday, January 5th.

As you probably know by now, the Grand Prize is a Deb-and-Jay designed GiftBasket that currently includes:
  • a $100 Ruth's Chris Gift Card
  • an MP3 Player
  • $30 in Itunes Credits
  • and MORE!!!

Now if you remember the Spirit of MISSION: Monday, it is to share with you good and deserving blogs that you may not already be following. With this being the last "MISSION: Monday" of the year, we have selected FOUR outstanding blogs that are worthy of your perusal, and we hope you visit and comment often!

For this finale week, we are hiding the identities of the bloggers, and simply giving clues...you will want to click them and discover why they are worth a visit for yourself!!

Blogger #1 - This beautiful woman is a staple of the blogging community we have become a part of, and has been a constant touchstone for a lot of us, I have noticed. She was one of the first bloggers I met when I started, and I'm a big fan of her site and work.
Blogger #2 - Only recently I found this woman...another stunner, coincidentally...and I have mentioned her before in my blogging. She is an amazing photographer, and her pictures and writing are incredibly moving.
Blogger #3 and Blogger #4. - Finally, this is something a little different...two bloggers who work together, much like Deb and I, they are blog buddies. Both love to write, and both have quite the edgy view on life, love and sex...

So here's what to do:

Step 1. Fill out a Mr Linky below to get a Dec 29th Grand Prize entry for this week:



Step 2. Visit each of the 4 featured blogs. You aren't required to do anything once you get there, we just hope you find them to be great blogs to follow. Read them, maybe leave a comment, simply have fun. But if you want to earn MORE Grand Prize entries, see below.



Step 3.mark your calendars to come back! (or better yet, just come back every day, so you never miss a thing!) We will run this Monday promotion today, December 29, close the Mr. Linky to entries at 12am EST, and finally we will draw for the Grand Prize GiftBasket, post the winner, and feature their blog on January 5th.

Wanna earn 2 entries to this giveaway instead of 1? Simply pick one of the blogs above, go learn 2 specifics about that blogger, and email them to Deb. She will put you down for 2 entries instead of one. And on top of that...

Wanna earn 3 more entries? Go Here

Four great blogs await your discovery, Blogger Agents...make us proud.

The Agency consists of Deb and Jay at Dirty Socks and Pizza and HalftimeLessons...make sure you bookmark us both, as we have some other gems to share...

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Et Cetera

Well, it's over... All in all, it wasn't horrible (although parts of it certainly were) and I survived. I only cancelled next year's Christmas once, but then I realized Christmas really will be cancelled (or altered) next year because we will be on our big trip. We are going to Israel and Jordan, and possibly Egypt over Christmas break '09 and I can't wait for the change of venue. It's a year away, but I am already feeling like I am behind in my preparations. Does anyone know if you can board a Chinese water dragon?

Anyway, the boys have gotten to spend some quality time with their friends. Mr. G and gang went caroling on Christmas eve in their speedos, which was quite the hilariously disturbing sight. Most of his friends are out of town now, so hopefully he will catch up on his homework. Mr. B is off paintballing with his little crew today. Those two know how to enjoy their downtime.

Hubs is on vacation, which is rare for him. He is usually back at work, leaving me to entertain the sister in law. However, this year, he doesn't have to go back until Jan 6. I will be so sick of him, but at least he can deal with his sister. Today, they are off to yet another Civil War battlefield and I am home, basking in the quiet.

Santa, per usual, was very generous to me. I have my very own laptop now and I am so happy. I love it so much (and you, too, Santa!). Oh, and I scored some seriously awesome boots that deserve their own post. Of course, it hasn't dipped below 60 since I got them.

We are all so desperate for snow that we have decided to skip town for a quick ski trip next weekend. We are going with another family so we will all have a ski buddy. We all ski at completely different levels, so we never see each other on the slopes, and it's no fun skiing alone.

I have been baking and eating. Chocolate cake, Toffee, pie... I have been showering sporadically and I haven't shaved my legs in weeks. I've been extraordinarily and unapologetically lazy. Here's a self-portrait for your viewing pleasure.


I have been thinking about all of you... Little things will happen or I will see something that reminds me of one of you, and I will smile. I almost hugged a woman that HAD to be Em...drinking a chocolate peppermint milkshake from Chik-fil-a. Was it you??? Did you head North looking for me? And I swear I saw Jill (in her fantastically fluffy boots) pinching Saddam Hussein's butt in the mall.

Love and warm holiday wishes to you all!

PS: Don't forget to come back tomorrow for your final opportunity to enter our MISSION: Monday Grand Prize Giveaway Extravaganza. No thanks to me, it promises to be a fun one. 



Monday, December 22, 2008

MISSION: Monday and Grand Prize Giveaway

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THE GAME HAS CHANGED, AGENTS.

And there are only 2 Mondays left until the Grand Prize Drawing on December 29th, and you have the ability to enter MULTIPLE TIMES to win. When you play each Monday, you get an entry each time you play, so make sure you come back each Monday!! But if you play EVERY week, you get one entry for every week you play! Plus, see below for ways to get even MORE entries!!

The stakes are getting higher, too...

The year end drawing will be for a Deb-and-Jay designed GiftBasket that currently includes:
  • a $100 Ruth's Chris Gift Card
  • an MP3 Player
  • $30 in Itunes Credits
  • and MORE!!!


We keep adding to this prize as the weeks go on, so it only pays to come back often and play!

Now if you remember the spirit of MISSION: Monday, it is to share with you good and deserving blogs that you may not already be following, and this week is no exception. We have selected three blogs that are worthy of your perusal, and we hope you visit and comment often!

Jiggety Jigg (Author - Jenni... Ever the cute, popular girl with the quick wit and fantastic shoes who loves to take pictures of her feet. Jenni was one of the first bloggers I met when I started, and given her stats, you seem to be loving her too!!)
Perfect Pen (Author - Young Momma...go check her out...but dont bring up cars or lawyers around her)
Frogs In My Formula (Author - Mrs. Mullet (or Nutjob)...There are only a couple of bloggers who make me laugh out loud, and she is one...you may not have been reading her, but you seriously need to be.)


So here's what to do:

Step 1. Fill out a Mr Linky below to get a Dec 29th Grand Prize entry for this week:



Step 2. Visit each of the 3 featured blogs. You aren't required to do anything once you get there, we just hope you find them to be great blogs to follow. Read them, maybe leave a comment, simply have fun. But if you want to earn MORE Grand Prize entries, see below.



Step 3.mark your calendars to come back! We will run this Monday promotion today, December 22, and finally December 29th, and after which we will draw for the Grand Prize GiftBasket.

Wanna earn 2 entries to this giveaway instead of 1? Simply pick one of the blogs above, go learn 2 specifics about that blogger, and email them to Deb. She will put you down for 2 entries instead of one. And on top of that...

Wanna earn 3 more entries? Go Here

Three great blogs await your discovery, Blogger Agents...make us proud.

The Agency consists of Deb and Jay at Dirty Socks and Pizza and HalftimeLessons...make sure you bookmark us both, as we have some other gems to share...

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ruh-Roh

I mean, really... REALLY?! Should I be expected to telepathically know that I am not supposed to use the hair dryer while the outside Christmas lights are on (don't bother wondering why it is 5:00 pm Eastern and i am just now getting a shower)?! Is there some sort of connection I am supposed to make? Oh yes, it's called GFI, I believe. Mr. Nasty Rude-Head was muttering something about that as he went storming down the stairs to the fuse box (is that what it is?). I quickly tried to make myself scarce, but did manage to catch, "First the #$*%^ toilet and now the *#$%^ breaker!!" 

I guess my cover's blown.

Oh, and just an aside... I do love my new haircut. Dry in 5 min (not including the aforementioned brief intermission)

Apropros (and More)

So Ms. Kel over at Girl In the Glasses, thought she would kill two birds with one stone. She tagged me to play the latest craze in blog games, which, by nature of the rules, will showcase my fab new 'do. Except I don't get to primp. Yikes! Oh well, I don't tend to do much primping anyway. Here's the scoop:

1) Take a picture of yourself right NOW!
2) DON'T change your clothes, DON'T fix your hair... Just take a picture.
3) Post that picture with NO editing.
4) Post these instructions with your picture.
5) Tag 10 people to do this.


Instead of tagging 10 people, I am tagging one person 10 times. Creative, huh? Well, my old friend, Jay, LOVES getting tagged, and he is a bit of an exhibitionist. Since I am feeling charitable (and I have it on good authority that he has nothing better to do with his 95 weeks of vacation), let's have 10 different photos of that adorable mug, por favor.

Finally, since I really and truly am completely self-absorbed, there may be yet another post on the hair. Or not so much the hair, but my perceived long list of physical flaws. Interesting that now that I am happy with my hair, I think my nose is way too big. Wow, isn't it terrific that I am finding so much time to wallow in self-pity, when not one present is wrapped (or purchased, for that matter), there are still lights to be hung and I haven't begun to think about Christmas dinner (don't worry, Turducken won't be involved)?

Oh, and a final "Finally": My poor boys are going to give birth to real, live, mewing kittens if it doesn't snow here soon. Mr. G is checking weather.com HOURLY. He is despondent over the apparent warm front that is supposed to hit Christmas Day. 50 degrees on Christmas? Ugh...

Rats! One more FINALLY... Shout out to my gal pal, Denise, who had her Blogcentennial yesterday, and could use a little celebratory cheer.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

Thursday's Thoughts: Headed to the Doghouse

Hair is cut and I am happy. Short, sassy bob. There was a slight language barrier and my "1 inch only" plea seemed to have gotten lost in translation. However, all is well... especially for $16. Now, to address the color. I am taking Brenda's advice and throwing on a reddish brown from the box. Full update, with maybe even a photo, soon. As always, thanks for your concern and compassion during my desperate time of need.

I am hours away from being in the doghouse. Am I the only one that waits until the VERY last second to pee? I had to pee since about 10 a.m. this morning, yet always had much more pressing issues at hand. Well, as I was rushing out of the house at 2 p.m., I thought since I was going to be in the car for a while, I should finally take a minute to pee. But then the phone rang. And then I had to pack snacks. And chase the dog into the house. So, just when things were about to turn ugly, I sprinted to the closest bathroom and flung open the door. That's when I remembered... The toilet in question has been having issues, so it is temporarily out of order. To remind us all of that little fact, my husband had the lid closed with the plunger sitting atop. Well, of course, at this point, I decided I couldn't wait, nor really move my legs enough to relocate, so I threw the plunger aside, yanked open the lid and peed (I do realize this is so very crass, but I tried writing the post using "urinate" and "relieving myself" and, trust me, it just didn't work). Now I am in a pickle... If I flush, I just may be opening the very gates of Hell and unleashing the wrath of my very moody and only slightly skilled plumber (hi Pookie!). If I don't flush, I am stone cold busted, and have to hear said plumber be all self-righteous and condescending. If I were male, I am fairly certain my deed would go unnoticed. However, I am the only female (aka toilet paper consumer) in the house. Oh, what's a girl to do?

Oh, and hey, I found this very fun, festive nail polish that looks great on the toes. It's called Gleaming, by Sally Hansen.

All in a day's work, kids. Glad you could drop by.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow?

For those of you who don't enjoy circular logic and time-guzzling tangents, here's the bottom line: I need a haircut. Goodbye and enjoy your worry-free evening.

For those of you who wish to humor me, or just don't have the good sense to move on, here goes...

I have never had long hair. At its longest, it has maybe grazed my shoulders. So, of course, since the grass really and truly must be greener on the proverbial other side, I want long hair. So I begin to grow it. Soon, the awkward grossness sets in and I immediately panic and cut it all off. Even as I am walking out of the salon, having left an enormous tip and waving and smiling and raving about my cute cut (while secretly vowing to never return), I start to suffer from cutter's remorse. I tell myself that next time, I must be stronger and allow my hair the time it needs to blossom into the luxurious mane it was meant to be. 

And so the cycle begins again. Hair grows. Hair gets ugly and time consuming to style. Hair goes into a clip. Permanently. So, I tell myself, "Why have it long if I am only going to wear it up?" I never have the time or desire to spend blowing it out, straightening it, fluffing it, un-fluffing it, and then ultimately pulling it back into a ponytail. Frustrated, I drive straight to the nearest Hair Cuttery and yell at them to chop it all off. However, this time, there is no need to bother with the big tip or the act. I storm out, insisting that next time, I will let it grow.

So that brings us to today... It takes me 20 minutes to style it (which probably doesn't seem like very long to those of you that have normal to above normal hygiene standards) and I don't love the finished look. It's okay, but not fan-friggin-tastic, and I swear it makes my bald spot look more pronounced. It is at the stage where I would normally cut it, but I am trying to fight the urge. There are a couple of reasons... 

1) I like to wear hats in the winter. Without the cute little strands of hair flipping out from underneath, I look like a boy.

2) There is no #2.

The color is another whole saga, in and of itself. The gray that was cute before 40 is now passe and ugly on this side of 40. The blonde is always too blonde, but the dark makes my grey roots look awful. There have been showdowns, tears, photographic evidence, litigious threats... But I am digressing, as I promised I would. 

So here you are, my wise friends. I have laid the contents of my heart before you... A troubled, lost lamb, wandering the lonely hair-trauma pastures. 

Off to the wonderful, magical event of the season, which is the 6th grade band concert. With long hair, I could wear ear plugs and no one would notice. 


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What Am I Wearing?!

Okay, this seemed like a good idea at the time (a week ago). My gal pal over at Tiaras & Tantrums hosts a Tuesday feature called "What Are You Wearing?" At the very least, it gave me an excuse to get dressed today. It's not much, but at least it's not my p.j.s. So here goes:

khakis (ooh, must be a special occasion): Land's End
black long sleeved T: Gap
brown sweater vest thing: Target
scarf (i forgot to turn the heat on this morning): NYC street vendor

Glamorous, no?

Oh, and because it is Thankful Tuesday (see? I didn't forget!)... I am thankful for the clothes on my back.

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Monday, December 15, 2008

MISSION: Monday and GRAND PRIZE Giveaway

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THE GAME HAS CHANGED, AGENTS.

There are only 3 Mondays left until the Grand Prize Drawing on December 29th, and you have the ability to enter MULTIPLE TIMES to win. When you play each Monday, you get an entry each time you play, so make sure you come back each Monday!! But if you play EVERY week, you get one entry for every week you play! Plus, see below for ways to get even MORE entries!!

The stakes are getting higher, too...

The year end drawing will be for a Deb-and-Jay designed GiftBasket that currently includes:
  • a $100 Ruth's Chris Gift Card
  • an MP3 Player
  • $30 in Itunes Credits
  • and MORE!!!


We keep adding to this prize as the weeks go on, so it only pays to come back often and play!

Now if you remember the spirit of MISSION: Monday, it is to share with you good and deserving blogs that you may not already be following, and this week is no exception. We have selected three blogs that are worthy of your perusal, and we hope you visit and comment often!

I Need a Martini Mom (Author - VodkaMom... Hilarious and a Vodka Connoisseur much like myself...)
Moms Without Blogs (Author - Lee...Another salty vixen...)
Making Memories (Author - Angie...Last week's winner, and I am seriously loving her blog...)


So here's what to do:

Step 1. Fill out a Mr Linky below to get a Dec 29th Grand Prize entry for this week:



Step 2. Visit each of the 3 featured blogs. You aren't required to do anything once you get there, we just hope you find them to be great blogs to follow. Read them, maybe leave a comment, simply have fun. But if you want to earn MORE Grand Prize entries, see below.



Step 3.mark your calendars to come back! We will run this Monday promotion on December 15, December 22, and finally December 29th, and at the end of which we will draw for the Grand Prize GiftBasket.

Wanna earn 2 entries to this giveaway instead of 1? Simply pick one of the blogs above, go learn 2 specifics about that blogger, and email them to Deb. She will put you down for 2 entries instead of one. And on top of that...

Wanna earn 3 more entries? Go Here

Three great blogs await your discovery, Blogger Agents...make us proud.

The Agency consists of Deb and Jay at Dirty Socks and Pizza and HalftimeLessons...make sure you bookmark us both, as we have some other gems to share...

Friday, December 12, 2008

Never Try to Out-Fox A Fox

I will spare you the details of how I discovered what I am about to share, but let's just say I am the proud mother of an attempted grade-forger. Well, of course, I busted him immediately, laughed at his ignorance, and reminded him of the following...

Ah, my dear, young, stupid grasshopper:

1) If you really wanted to be a successful grade-alterer, you should have paid more attention to your penmanship over the years.

2) Blue ink over black type is a pathetic and dead give away.

3) Once you go down that road, there is no turning back. You have to keep track of which grades you changed, and what you changed them to. It's almost as complicated as math.

4) This one you know already, which completely dumbfounds me... Your teachers email progress reports weekly. I already knew the truth.

5) Please...You have the high school hi-jinks mastermind (that's HSHM, for short) for a mother. What is it those crazy kids like to say these days? Ah yes... Been there. Done that. 

6) Your punishment will not be for the grade, because in all actuality it isn't that bad and it is only mid-quarter. You will have plenty of opportunity to visit your teacher after school and possibly be introduced to a tutor. The punishment is for the deceit. I am not a big fan of withholding/lying about information. Not good, Mister Not-So-Smarty-Pants. Why don't you take a look at that geometry book while you are sitting in your bedroom with no phone/tv/computer all weekend? You just might learn something. 

7) Oh, and before you try to trick your substitute teacher into believing that YOU are the substitute already assigned, and she can leave and enjoy her afternoon, please see #5.



Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Sordid Truth

You people give me way too much credit. It is very sweet that you are so willing to bestow upon me the benefit of the doubt... My absence being due to a busy life, and what not. Well, congratulations... You're all 0 for 1.

Let's examine what I have been doing/have accomplished since my last post (and not the guilty rambling one, and not the Mission:Monday one, which is really Jay posing as me), roughly a week ago.

1) Trying to nurse the lizard back to health. And no, this is not an euphemism for something inappropriate. I literally have been providing hospice care for my son's sick leopard gecko. Gently dropping tiny bits of water on his parched mouth... Fervently waving mealworms in front of him, while trying to suppress my gag reflex... Rearranging his little rocks. Surely the end is near. I really can't take much more "caregiving". 

2) Observing my hair at various stages of cleanliness, preparing to lay out a thoughtful, well-balanced argument for cutting my hair. Or for NOT cutting it. 

3) Feeding my family Taco Bell every chance I get. 

4) Indiscriminately eating obscene amounts of sugar. I have become a sugar slut... Shoving pop-tarts (UN-toasted, no less) and zebra cakes down my gullet, washing them down with whole milk (because I have run out of skim, yet can't seem to find the time to get to the store).

And now, a three day swim meet looms large... So I will go sit in a hot, chlorine-filled facility with 900 of my closest annoying friends, listening to them live vicariously through their children. They will go on and on about how hard their kids train, their kids' special suits, their kids' special diets, and their kids' special specialness, while my child may or may not sink to the bottom of the pool. I am crossing my fingers that my People and US Weekly are waiting in my mailbox, so I can stick my nose in them and ignore the world. Oh, and I should probably charge my iPod.


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Cue the Violins

I feel like I have been extremely remiss in my blog duties. And no, I haven't lost my mind... I know I don't have any actual duties (of which I am aware). I didn't take any oath, although who knows what I agreed to when I hastily (and blindly) accepted the rather lengthy Blogger.com "terms of service". But I really do feel a sense of obligation to you, my dear friends (Yes, I just called you friends. Have I crossed some sort of blog stalker line?).

You laugh at my lame jokes, you guide me through my crises (both small and large), you commiserate, you teach, and sometimes, you are simply there. And that's where I have fallen down on the job over the last few days.

And I have no good excuse! Now, if I had been on a cruise, like a certain someone we all know, or tending to the hearts of grieving friends, like someone else that hob nobs with our little gang, then I might not feel so bad.

I not only feel bad for not being here for you, I feel bad for me because I have probably missed out on some raucous tales, some inside jokes, some killer recipes and lots and lots of laughs. I know you are there, just waiting to pick up where we left off (or hoping that I have forgotten all about my little "Panic Attack" series), and that makes me happy.

Ok, then! Let's get on with it! I've got a hair dilemma that needs your immediate attention. Details in the A.M.

Our Winner...

Of yesterday's MISSION:Monday is the lovely Angie at Making Memories! Congratulations, Angie... That incredibly cute bag from Kristen at The Sassy Shoppe is yours!

Don't forget, Agents, that our Grand Prize Giveaway Spectacular is coming soon. If you have already been playing along, you already have at least one (if not more) entries in it. Stay tuned for more details.

Monday, December 8, 2008

MISSION: Monday and Giveaway

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Good Morning Blogger Agents.

The agency has uncovered a number of blogs you may not have been following, and we have designed a weekly giveaway around helping you discover some fantastic blogs.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to visit the blogs below, discover their secrets, and report back here. The bloggers featured will be past winners, deserving contributors, or just damn good and hilarious writers deserving of your eyeballing.

Your reward will be, let us say, substantial. We will offer a weekly prize to one blog explorer/agent, but then EACH person who plays will be entered each week into the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the year. Plus, the winner each week will have their blog featured in the following week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway! Explore early, Explore often, Agents. Riches await.


This week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway: A Sassy Mommy Bag valued at $24, from Kristin's The Sassy Shoppe!!! In addition, the winner will have her/his blog used as a feature blog in the next week's Mission!!




Year Ending GRAND PRIZE ANNOUNCEMENT!!!
In addition to the weekly giveaways that MISSION: Monday has become famous for, on December 29th we will have our GRAND PRIZE DRAWING!! When you play each week, you are automatically entered into the year end drawing, but if you play EVERY week, you get one entry for every week you play! What's more, here's the juicy news...

The year end drawing will be a Deb-and-Jay designed Gift basket that includes a $100 Ruth's Chris Gift Card, an MP3 Player, and more...we're not gonna give it all away, just know that it will pay to play week after week...

To enter the Giveaways, you will be visiting 3 blogs...follow these steps:

Step 1. Fill out a Mr Linky below. (Closes at Midnight, EST)



Step 2. Visit each of the following 3 featured blog links, find the answer to the question posted at each blog, and leave a comment on their blog to prove you were there (But dont post the answers to the questions!!)...this is important- we are trying to expose you to great blogs out there, so take the time to have a look around!

Momisodes (Author - Momisodes... seriously beautiful photography and writing.)
Bitchin' Wives Club (Author - Amy... Seriously twisted and fantastic.)
Be Different, Act Normal (Author - Lorie...Last week's winner, and I am seriously loving her blog...)


Step 3. What happens then? We will stop taking entries at Midnight on Monday, and then we will draw a winner using a random number generator, and email that person to ask for the answers to the questions. So make sure you are ready! The weekly winner will receive the mentioned prize, and ALL entrants will be entered into the year ending drawing for the BIG prize.

Wanna earn 3 entries to this giveaway instead of 1? Go Here Or need a button for your blog? Go Here

Three great blogs await your discovery, Blogger Agents...make us proud.

The Agency consists of Deb and Jay at Dirty Socks and Pizza and HalftimeLessons...make sure you bookmark us both, as we have some other gems to share...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Yes! Me, Too!!

Being cheery on a regular basis is exhausting, I am learning. I am perservering, though. I am happy to report that I managed to narrowly escape Panic Attack #4 (Tree Trimming Extravaganza), upon which I will expound when I am not feeling so irritable.

What I need right now is some good, old fashioned external validation. Anyone game?

I seem to be transferring my holiday psychosis to everyday annoyances that I am normally able to handle (or flat-out deny). Does ANY of the following sound familiar... at ALL?

1) Are ANY of you mortified because your hair seems to be thinning at a faster rate than your husband's?

2) Do any of you have zits AND wrinkles?

3) Do any of you ever leave your wet, washed clothes in the washer so long, that, to be on the safe side, you wash them AGAIN, before transferring to the dryer?

4) Do any of you ever feed your kids oatmeal for dinner? Just every once in a while?

5) Do any of you ever yell at your kids about their stinky attitude when they probably just need a hug and someone to say, "I bet that must suck"?

6) Has anyone else ever paid $150 for highlights, only to go home and put a box of L'Oreal #6A over them? Even once? (this could explain #1)

7) Are any of you ever in such a foul mood that you go looking for a fight? (this could be with your spouse, your pharmacist, your dog)

8) Do any of you ever lie to your husband and say the trash people came extra early when really you were just too lazy to take the trash out at all?

I wouldn't be surprised if it's just me. I hope not, though. Lord, I hope not.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A First For Me: Actual, Credible, Useful Information

There seems to be a clear consensus here in Blogtopia that Christmastime has veered way off track. It's been fun and inspiring to get new ideas and share thoughts on how to work our way back to the real meaning of the holiday. Many of us have decided to let our giving outweigh our getting, and I think that is a huge step in the right direction.

So, here's a link to some useful information when trying to decide which cause should get your attention and dollars.

Short on time? Don't want to wade through pages and pages of ratings? Well, The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation consistently gets the highest rating AND I know thousands of kids are waiting on a cure. One, in particular, means a whole heck of a lot to me. Even when he's grounded...

And, as always, thank you to Angie, our fearless leader.


With Friends Like These, Who Needs a Cat?

So to celebrate today's Wordful Wednesday, I was going to show and tell about my cat who has found true love with my son's hoodie. But when the mailman sped up my driveway and did a U-Turn in my lawn, I knew that would have to wait. You see, our mailbox is wayyyy down the pipestem, up the cul-de-sac, over the hills and through the woods. There's one, and only one, reason our mailman would ever dare to come so deep into the black hole of darkness... Package day!!! After he took off, leaving lovely, muddy treads in what was once my grass, I ran to the front porch to find my mail all wadded up... and yes! A package! Yay!

Enclosed was this lovely set of watches that can amp-up any outfit imaginable. Girls' night on the town? Why, I'd pick the silver face with the silver mesh band! Off to a PTA meeting? I'd probably grab the gold face, with the denim band. Except I have pretty much been banned from the PTA, but that's another story. Take a look and tell me which combo you like best.

Finally, I want to thank my favorite redhead, Wendy, for being such a constant and fun pal. I am so honored to have won her contest celebrating her 100th post. 


Oh, and as always, thanks to our gal, Angie, who is just a goddess, plain and simple. 

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Talk to the Hand...

I don't really view myself as overtly political. Sure, there are issues I care about deeply. But I also have an acute awareness that there are those who hold opposing views, that care just as deeply, and I am not about to tell them they are wrong. 

Until today...

I have, what some people might say, HAD IT.

As our economy spirals swiftly and surely down the toilet, I figure we are all going to feel it in some way or another. Fine. Whatever. I don't like it, but I'll play along. I was a good sport about the whole financial institution thing, which really, can I tell you?, rubbed me the wrong way. But, if that's what it takes to help solve things, well, then sure, let's send all the CEOs on a super deluxe spa weekend to sort things out. 

And as much as I don't like the prospect of higher taxes, I realize that since I do absolutely nada to contribute financially to our family, I am already enjoying the benefits of a welfare program, of sorts, in my own home. I guess I'm in no position to judge.

Well, in the 4 seconds or so that it takes to go from Google News to my Google Reader, this caught my eye. Uhhh, excuse me?

Oh, listen, I would just love to have my tax money go to help out the poor, struggling "Big 3", but guess what? I already have! I have not one, NOT TWO, but three American-made cars sitting in my driveway (two are VERY old, so don't even go down the "spreading the wealth" road with me). Those jokers in Detroit have gotten quite a bit of my money... How much more do they need? 

I am sorry, but if Congress is really idiotic enough to pass this load of nonsense, I think those of us that own American cars should be exempt. Should I start a petition? Picket the Capitol (although traffic really is a headache down there at this time of year)? I guess I will start by calling my Congressman and Senators, and go from there. 

Good Lord, what next? Trust me, if I am forced to burn my bras, we're ALL going to pay.


Monday, December 1, 2008

Panic Attack #3: Advent Schmadvent

So, this one is half my fault and half their fault. My fault, because I don't know how to plan ahead. Their fault, because they are ungrateful, spoiled little so-and-so's. 

A few years ago, genius here was on the lookout for new ideas that would eventually become family traditions. You see, the only true traditions I have to pass down are 1) fighting while trimming the tree, 2) fighting while decorating the house, and 3) fighting while opening presents. You can see why I am in need...

Well, a cute little advent calendar caught my eye, and I thought, "Gee, here's a fun and easy way to make Christmas last an entire month!" Before you even ask, no, I had not been smoking crack.  

Oh, the boys were quite pleased. At first. Very quickly the little knick-knacks weren't cutting it and I was forced to up the ante. Then, the age old problem of the tooth fairy arose. You know what I am talking about... The tooth fairy is caught without change and has to leave a $5 under the pillow and life for the fairy becomes increasingly more expensive. Well, in my tardiness to secure the daily gift, I had to grab something quick (and coincidentally, valuable). There was no turning back at that point. Expectations rise exponentially at my house.

To make matters worse (See? I can acknowledge my own role in the nightmare), I thought it would be "neat" to write a little poem with a cute little piece of clip art, telling the boys where to find their hidden treasures. The tiny doors on the calendar are way too small to hide the actual surprise. By about day 3, I had run out of words that rhyme with advent, surprise, elf, suicide... you get the idea.

I think it was somewhere around day 15 or 16 last year, that in a screaming fit of rage, I packed the whole thing up and vowed to my children that they would never see the advent calendar again. Oh, don't worry, this has a happy ending. For them. They did the whole groveling and apology bit, and not 24 hours later, I had caved and had two inappropriately expensive something-or-others waiting for them. With a poem. With a cute little piece of jolly Christmas clip art on it.

So, here I am... A year older and maybe just a bit wiser. The boys came home from swim practice and immediately started elbowing each other out of the way to get to the calendar. Moody Teen got there first, and read the clue to look in the freezer. Sweet Pre-teen found the envelope behind the ice cream, tore it open and began to read:

For the first day of Advent, there won't be a gift
Instead, you must each find someone else's spirits to lift.

When I told them they each had $25 to donate to a good cause that they had to pick, they almost fell to the floor. But, in their defense, they regrouped rather quickly and were good sports. Youngest is deciding between a Food Bank and an Animal Rescue. Oldest chose Breast Cancer, so he can freely say breast. Repeatedly. 

Total Cop Out

Greetings. I hope you all enjoyed Denise's birthday as much as I did. As you can tell, there is no MISSION: Monday today. We will return to our regularly scheduled super-sleuthing next week, with a big announcement and three more fab blogs. 

But don't worry, I am not leaving you empty handed. Here is the easiest recipe in the world that is sure to please, well, my kids. I think others will like it, but they are the only people whom I have personally witnessed demanding and devouring it. 

Easy Apple Crisp

1 stick butter (softened)
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar

mix above ingredients until crumbly

peel and slice 6 apples (I use Gala) in a baking dish

sprinkle mixture evenly over apples & top with cinnamon

bake @ 350 degrees for ~40 minutes (until golden brown)

eat with or without vanilla ice cream

milk is a must
 
refrigerate leftovers as they make a wonderful breakfast the next morning 
(I like it cold)

Sunday, November 30, 2008

It's a Party, and We're ALL Invited!

Today we celebrate Denise,  who, despite having a birthday today, is not as old as I am. Let's all go over to her blog and wish her well!

Happy Birthday, Denise! You have been a blessing in my bloggy life! 

Friday, November 28, 2008

Utterly Horrified and Speechless

I was feeling very proud of myself for being jolly and stress-free all holiday weekend (well, not stress-free, but I WAS able to let a lot go), when I came across THIS. Honestly, I don't know who could read this and not be completely depressed. What is wrong with people?? 


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Birthday to My Own Thanksgiving Turkey



Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound?  Not really...



Has a very "tight end"...



Best dad in the world...



Hard worker...



My very best friend (and spill cleaner)...



REALLLLLLY wants this for his birthday...



But is getting this, instead.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Family That Wears Utensils Together, Stays Together

It's not the greatest picture of the four of us. I would have sworn I had promised myself no bowl-cuts for the kids, but obviously that went out the window. My hair is an awful shade of weird and my poor husband looks totally overworked and exhausted.

But no one likes to be goofy like we do. Even while attending the most civilized of brunches. When one of us decides to play, we all play. All for one, and one for all. And that's because we are a family. A silly family, but a family, nonetheless.

This Thanksgiving-Eve Wordful Wednesday is brought to us all by Angie, for whom I am thankful.

For the 1st Panic Attack of Christmas, My In-Laws Gave to Me...

I really am trying to change. I fully acknowledge my grinchiness and want to do better. But when my mother-in-law called to say she wanted to send us a Turducken for Thanksgiving, I was beside myself. This just had complete nightmare written all over it.

First, I'd be quite okay with a quick run through the Taco Bell drive thru for Thanksgiving dinner. I figure as long as we ate in the (rarely used) dining room, it'd be fine. And before you get all up in my grillz, we would, of course, finish with a lovely, homemade pumpkin pie.

Second, I cannot stand seeing food go to waste. This is my problem with the whole turkey dinner extravaganza. Nobody in my house likes turkey as much as they claim to, and I bet if you really thought about it, you don't like it all that much either. Face it... It's a very thinly veiled excuse to pig out on stuffing, sweet potato casserole, and cream cheese mashed potatoes. All the good stuff gets eaten, while the big, pasty, DRY bird that took all week to thaw, four hours to cook, and 1 hour to carve gets kicked to the curb. And don't start with the whole turkey salad sandwiches and turkey noodle soup. Not going to happen.

After some cajoling by Mr. Festive (more like Mr. Non-Confrontational mama's boy), I acquiesced. I figured anyone serving a Turducken for Thanksgiving has to be festive (or certifiable, I suppose). And Lord knows, we can't upset the mother-in-law. But I did have strict conditions that had to be met...

I was assured that it would be a) SMALL b) boneless and c) FULLY cooked. It very briefly seemed like a dream come true. Maybe this Turducken was a little gift from heaven, giving me a tiny boost toward jolliness. I wouldn't have tons and tons of extra turkey that no one eats and I would just have to heat it, instead of having to go through the trauma of thawing/overcooking/undercooking. Easy.

Well, well, well... The package arrived a few days ago. Luckily it was very cold outside, so I just ignored its presence, leaving it on the porch until my husband got home. We opened it together, and what to our wondering eyes should appear?

A FIFTEEN pound, FROZEN, completely UNCOOKED (as in RAW) Turducken with little things that look suspiciously like bones in it. Oh, and with the wrong stuffing.

Everyone (besides me) is just thrilled and can't wait to eat the stupid bird (or birds, shall I say?). It has been thawing for days, and is still very frozen. I am soldiering on... trying to keep from ripping apart anyone and anything within reach. My neck is a little stiff, my jaw is extremely sore and I am PMSing like a fiend. Other than that... life is just peachy.

MISSION: Monday...We Have a Winner!!

And it is the lovely Lorie at Be Different...Act Normal. Congratulations, Lorie and thanks for participating. Once we verify that you have all three answers, the cute MOM necklace from Ann at Rudimentary Metal + Fire will be officially yours! 

Also, Lorie will be one of our featured bloggers in next week's round of MISSION: Monday! She's got a fun blog that I know you all will love.

Good work, Agents. Don't forget to play next week, too, because... EVERY time you play, you get an entry in our Grand End of Year Giveaway.

Oh, and as a little favor to my favorite Agents, I am letting you in on a secret. Go check out Ann's other creative endeavor, Beadiful Things, for a fantastic giveaway that I plan to win. 


Monday, November 24, 2008

MISSION: Monday...and Giveaway!!

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Good Morning Blogger Agents.

The agency has uncovered a number of blogs you may not have been following, and we have designed a weekly giveaway around helping you discover some fantastic blogs.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to visit the blogs below, discover their secrets, and report back here. The bloggers featured will be past winners, deserving contributors, or just damn good and hilarious writers deserving of your eyeballing.

Your reward will be, let us say, substantial. We will offer a weekly prize to one blog explorer/agent, but then EACH person who plays will be entered each week into the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the year. Plus, the winner each week will have their blog featured in the following week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway! Explore early, Explore often, Agents. Riches await.

This week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway: A "Mom" Charm Necklace valued at $37, from Ann Westby's Rudimentary Metal + Fire shop!!! (Also, make sure you check out her Beadiful Things shop!) In addition, the winner will have her/his blog used as a feature blog in the next week's Mission!! Not to mention, ALL entrants are entered into the year end GRAND PRIZE DRAWING!



To enter the Giveaway, you will be visiting 3 blogs...follow these steps:

Step 1. Fill out a Mr Linky below. (Closes at Midnight, EST)



Step 2. Visit each of the following 3 featured blog links, find the answer to the question posted at each blog, and leave a comment on their blog to prove you were there (But dont post the answers to the questions!!)...this is important- we are trying to expose you to great blogs out there, so take the time to have a look around!

Musings of a Barefoot Foodie (Author - Brittany... this lady is twisted...and hilarious.)
Seven Clown Circus (Author - Angie)
And last week's winner...
CutieBootyCakes (Author - Renee)


Step 3. What happens then? We will stop taking entries at Midnight on Monday, and then we will draw a winner using a random number generator, and email that person to ask for the answers to the questions. So make sure you are ready! The weekly winner will receive the mentioned prize, and ALL entrants will be entered into the year ending drawing for the BIG prize.

Wanna earn 3 entries to this giveaway instead of 1? Go Here Or need a button for your blog? Go Here

Three great blogs await your discovery, Blogger Agents...make us proud.

The Agency consists of Deb and Jay at Dirty Socks and Pizza and HalftimeLessons...make sure you bookmark us both, as we have some other gems to share...


Friday, November 21, 2008

We Interrupt Our Regularly Scheduled Program to Bring You...

So I had not yet even begun to bask in the self-pity and martyrdom brought on by Panic Attack #1, when I was totally blind-sided by Panic Attack #2! And let me tell you, if you think a Turducken sounds traumatic, you haven't met my sister-in-law. You see, Panic Attack #2 involves a surprise Christmas visit from said relative. Sure, on the surface this seems benign. However there is much (MUCH) more to the story. I am beginning to sense a full psychotic break in my future. 

Luckily, my brain is very adept at shutting down and going into "avoidance" mode (that, or someone gave me a lobotomy in my sleep last night). So, for today, we will simply ignore the fact that a) I have ZERO freezer space due to "the horrid beast that shall not be named", and b) for the past 15 years, my sister-in-law has spent Christmas with us, but has YET to actually be invited or give proper notice (telling an 11 y.o. does NOT count). Now, I would have just assumed she was coming to ruin things yet again this year, had MY HUSBAND NOT ASSURED ME she would NOT be coming. 

Interesting that my husband plays prominent roles in both panic attacks #1 and #2. Hmm...

So, let's be happy and festive! I'll list for you some of my favorite Christmas songs, in no particular order. If you actually go looking for any of the songs, it is important that you stick with the version I suggest:

1) Christmas Waltz (Nancy Wilson ONLY. Don't bother with The Carpenters' version. Snooze)
2) Christmas Wrapping (The Waitresses)
3) This Christmas (Donny Hathaway)
4) Do They Know it's Christmas (Band Aid. You could go with Barenaked Ladies' version, too)
5) Last Christmas (Wham. My own guilty pleasure)
6) God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman (Barenaked Ladies WITH Sarah McLachlan)
7) Song for a Winter's Night (Sarah McLachlan)
8) Var. on the Kanon by Pachelbel (George Winston. Oh, this brings back memories)
9) All I Want for Christmas is You (Mariah Carey. Just for fun)

I may never get to my 12 part series...and that might just be a GOOD thing.


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Thankful Thursday, With or Without Kristina P.

So before I start the deluge of nightmarish vignettes detailing my holiday hell, I thought I would take a minute to be thankful. Kristina P.'s take on thankfulness last week was hard to top, so I will go in a slightly different direction:

I am thankful that when I walked into the drugstore to pick up a prescription, the most glorious bottle of fuchsia nail polish caught my eye. Tonight, my toes will get the royal treatment.

I am thankful for my husband, who, unlike Em's amazingly thoughtful husband, did NOT bring me flowers. Instead, he brought home 12 of the most delectable looking cupcakes EVER. Granted, they were given to his entire office, but he was kind (and sneaky) enough to swap out the coconut ones (blech) for the chocolate ones (yay) and bring home the best of the lot. After my metatarsal makeover, I will sit down with my own little red-velvet-with-cream-cheese slice of heaven and enjoy every bite. 

I am thankful that my youngest did not catch me cheating when we were playing "rock-paper-scissors" to determine who would get the sole red velvet cupcake. I will try with all my might to save him a (tiny) bite.

My evening just got a LOT better. 

The 12 Panic Attacks of Christmas: A Series

Ugh, the holidays. Rapidly approaching, already bringing with them mild indigestion and fitful sleep. I hate the holidays, as awful as that sounds, but I think, for good reason. I don't hate the holidays because of what they represent. I am all for giving thanks for my abundant life, celebrating the birth of Jesus, ringing in another glorious year. Yes, I may be a Grinch, but I am certainly no sociopath.  

It all comes down to this: I hate the holidays because of the anxiety they produce. And unlike all you roller coaster fanatics, I really don't care for the taste of vomit in the back of my throat, and white-knuckle, stomach-dropping fear. 

So in my effort to confront my neuroses head on, I am introducing a series of blog posts, entitled, "The 12 Panic Attacks of Christmas". Sure, there are probably more than 12 issues associated with the holidays that induce panic within, but I'll try to stick with the biggies. And give me credit for trying to be festive in my kvetching. 

My plan is to intersperse my 12 panic attack posts throughout the holiday season, just to keep you jolly souls grounded in reality. And maybe if all goes according to plan, before we hit #12, I will somehow be miraculously cured and by the time Christmas rolls around, I'll be baking cookies and playing Scrabble with hateful relatives with the best of 'em.

So feel free to commiserate, judge, or console. I totally get that there will be some of you that think I am out of my mind and others will be saying, "Amen, sister". But I just have to give this a try, because I have faith in this blogging process and I know I am going to learn a lot (or become an isolated pariah).

First up, Turducken. If you don't know what I am talking about, look it up and be ready to help.


Monday, November 17, 2008

Drum Roll, Please...

So before we get to the big announcement of our MISSION: Monday winner, let's take care of a little housekeeping...

1) If you have a product or service that you would like to see featured as a prize on MISSION: Monday, let Jay or me know with a quick email or comment. It's a great way to get your name out to millions of readers. Ok, maybe not millions. But close.

2) If you have been faithfully playing for the past three weeks, yet still haven't won, don't despair. Let me remind you that for EACH week you play, you get a chance to win our end of year giveaway. So... play 10 weeks, get 10 entries.

3) Speaking of the END OF YEAR GIVEAWAY... Stay tuned, Agents, because our big announcement is coming soon.

Now, without further ado, I present to you this week's winner: Renee aka Mekhi's mom, from CutieBootyCakes.

Our winner will be receiving a $25 Target gift card, and will be one of the featured bloggers next week. Congratulations, Renee!

Remember Agents, keep up the good work and we'll see you next week with our next assignment.

MISSION: Monday...and Giveaway!!

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Good Morning Blogger Agents.

The agency has uncovered a number of blogs you may not have been following, and we have designed a weekly giveaway around helping you discover some fantastic blogs.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to visit the blogs below, discover their secrets, and report back here. The bloggers featured will be past winners, deserving contributors, or just damn good and hilarious writers deserving of your eyeballing.

Your reward will be, let us say, substantial. We will offer a weekly prize to one blog explorer/agent, but then EACH person who plays will be entered each week into the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the year. Plus, the winner each week will have their blog featured in the following week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway! Explore early, Explore often, Agents. Riches await.

This week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway: A Target Gift Card valued at $25!!! In addition, the winner will have her/his blog used as a feature blog in the next week's Mission!! Not to mention, ALL entrants are entered into the year end GRAND PRIZE DRAWING!



To enter the Giveaway, you will be visiting 3 blogs...follow these steps:

Step 1. Fill out a Mr Linky below. (Closes at Midnight, CST)



Step 2. Visit each of the following 3 featured blog links, find the answer to the question posted at each blog, and leave a comment on their blog to prove you were there (But dont post the answers to the questions!!)...this is important- we are trying to expose you to great blogs out there, so take the time to have a look around!

The McMommy Chronicles (Author - McMommy... this lady is just plain FUNNY.)
Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit (Author - EM)
And last week's winner...
Tangled Me (Author - Jo)


Step 3. What happens then? We will stop taking entries at Midnight on Monday, and then we will draw a winner using a random number generator, and email that person to ask for the answers to the questions. So make sure you are ready! The weekly winner will receive the mentioned prize, and ALL entrants will be entered into the year ending drawing for the BIG prize.


Want to support "MISSION: Monday" by putting a button on your blog? Copy and paste the code below to your blog...

and it will look like this:
MissionMonday


Three great blogs await your discovery, Blogger Agents...make us proud.

The Agency consists of Deb and Jay at Dirty Socks and Pizza and HalftimeLessons...make sure you bookmark us both, as we have some other gems to share...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

People Are Hungry. Do You Care?

While we are all trying to decide between roast turkey or perhaps a nice rack of lamb, picking out our favorite bottle of port to go with our pie, or obsessing about the right table setting to impress our relatives, there are millions of people right here in America wondering IF they will even eat on Thanksgiving. It's hard to find much to be thankful for when your stomach is growling and your kids are hungry. 

That's why we all need to take a minute to help in one of the best and easiest ways around. My favorite moms over at Girls Night Out (GNO) have organized a fundraiser, and I am inviting you to participate. 

GNO Cares is raising money for FeedAmerica.org, who has set a goal of feeding 14 million hungry Americans this Thanksgiving. And typical of those creative GNO gals, they are doing it in their own fun and fabulous way. 

So, here's what YOU can do:

1) Go to the GNO Cares site now or anytime this week, and make a donation through paypal. That's what I did, and I assure you, it was painless.

2) Join us THIS Tuesday night, November 18, for a virtual food drive, complete with live auction and door prizes. If you go check out Mommygossip-GNO.blogspot.com, you can get all the details and preview some of the cool prizes you could win. 

These ladies are on a mission, and if you have been to my blog anytime recently, you know that I love a mission! In fact, my partner in crime, Jay, and I have donated a prize to the event on behalf of our MISSION: Monday blog hunts. Yes, we are shameless and see nothing wrong with a little self-promotion, but we also are impressed and inspired by the commitment of the GNO gang to our communities. 

There's a $25 Borders gift card with your name on it that we would love to see you win. So go check out the site, plan to drop by the GNO event on Tuesday night, make a small (or large) donation, or all of the above.

Questions? Just let me know...

And on behalf of the GNO gang, and the millions of hungry men, women and children in our great Land of Opportunity, THANK YOU!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

What Lies Beneath

So this was supposed to be a loving tribute to my sweet boy who turns 12 today. However, when I went up to his room, perhaps to glean some inspiration, my hand was forced in a slightly different direction.

On the surface, things seem above average. Clean room, made bed, clutter-free desk. Well, not so fast. Take a look-see at what I found...

"Yawn," you say. "A messy closet. Been there, done that," Right? WRONG! Take a closer look. Here, I'll help (reminder: he's 12)...

A table of contents of the highlights, if you will:

1) Care Bear
2) an assault rifle (ok, it's really an airsoft gun made to look like one, but still...)
3) Moo (blanket with sheep on it, misguidedly named, obviously)
4) authentic WWII combat helmet
5) Littlest Pet Shop, with lil' kitty and grooming tools (this is where my jaw dropped)
6) his "dressy clothes": a lone navy blazer that is probably 3 sizes too small 
7) a fencing glove
8) real machine gun bullets (nice)
9) his temperpedic pillow that he insists gives him good dreams

But I guess when you consider the source of this disaster, it's really no surprise...


Happy Birthday, Mr. Bean! I love you, my precious maniac! And for your birthday, since you obviously already have everything a boy could possibly want, you may choose ONE (I don't want to overindulge) of the following:

1) deposit down on a padded cell
2) straight jacket
3) electro-shock therapy

Oh, and you're grounded.

And God bless Cecily and MamaGeek for this fun tradition, and for putting up with me every week! Love those gals!

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek


Thankful Thursday (aka The Day I Officially Went Insane)

Following in Kristina P.'s footsteps, I would like to give thanks on this cold and rainy Thankful Thursday.

I am thankful for the crazy, barely functioning mall security gang who NOT ONLY kept me company for the 2 hours I stood in the rain waiting for my car to be unlocked, but also reminded me why my kids must stay in school and get a good job.

I am thankful for the emo punks with the striped hair and bad attitudes that NOT ONLY chain smoked right next to me for the 2 hours I stood in the rain waiting for my car to be unlocked, but also reminded me why my kids must stay in school and get a good job.

I am thankful for the Macy's worker that thought I wanted to buy a car key from her when I was hysterically searching for my keys BEFORE I realized I had locked them in my car. Clearly something was lost in translation.

Finally, I am thankful for Chik-fil-A, whose tasty #1 with a Diet Coke calmed me for the second day in a row. 

OH! And I am also thankful for the extremely tardy and way too jovial locksmith that NOT ONLY did quite a number to my paint job while breaking into my car, but also allowed me to rest my weary, soaked, cold, flip-flopped feet in his smelly, smoky, possibly lice-infested tow truck while taking his car-breaker-inner-thing and hacking the side of my car with it.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

From the Bottom of My Heart

So yesterday was all about me basically holding God hostage. And after He did not meet my demands in less than an hour, I had no other choice but to turn to my blog homies (Holla!). I knew I was taking a chance, but boy, did it pay off! 

I have not been blogging long, but already have my own little community of crazies. Interestingly, many are Mormon. And let me tell you, there is an irony in a Southern Baptist raised gal being greeted by Mormons. But the rewards have been immense. You (and you know exactly who you are) are the warmest, funniest, sweetest, SMARTEST bunch of people I have met in a LONG time. And yes, I do still know my own name, what year it is, and that I haven't actually "met" any of you. So that's my first bit of recognition.

The second part is to all the rest of you that were there for me, literally within minutes (and I thought I needed a life!). I had extremely relevant Scriptures, words of encouragement, and offers of a shoulder to lean on right in my comments section and in my inbox pretty much immediately. A couple of those emails hit it home for me, big time

Finally, there are those of you who may not have answered me directly. Perhaps you are going through your own hard time and your post touched me. I do derive so much comfort from reading your blogs, knowing I am not the only one faced with tough times. I hope I can be there for you, and offer you encouragement and comfort. Please! Use me! 

As a "thank you", I wanted to give you all something to show my appreciation. I came up with a really cute idea for a button, but I don't know how to make a button. And my tech support (Holla, Jay!) is unlike Hillary, in that he does NOT answer the phone at 3 a.m.

So I had to make do with my own resources. Drum roll, please.......

I DID get that answer to my prayer... and it was through all of you!

Post Script: Due to the easy to follow tutorial of my blog idol, Carissa, I actually made my very first button, complete with code and EVERYTHING! (see sidebar) So now your dreams have come true and you can actually have one of my masterpieces. Now don't all grab at once. Be good kids and take turns. 


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Shout Out to My Mormons. Holla!!

Or anyone else who has any sort of (even remote) spiritual superiority... HELP!

And yes, we are still celebrating Jo's MISSION: Monday win (see below). However, I am having a crisis. I need to be selfish and use my blog to expose my own neuroses. Sorry.

Here's the deal: I prayed about something that needs God's immediate attention, and I am still as lost and confused as I was before (although He did steer me to Chik-fil-a for a #1 w/ a Diet Coke, which calmed me immensely)! Still no clear answer to my prayer. 

And before you start with the whole "God answers all your prayers, just maybe not the way you want Him to" business, I get that. I kept a very open mind and heart while begging for 1) peace regardless of how my situation turns out and 2) help figuring out what action to take in this particular situation. 

So, see? I was being very mature and good by not trying to demand the outcome to the situation that I really want. And I think that part will work itself out. So I am not as hung up on the peace bit as I am on the action business. Besides, there's always Ativan.

What I really need is advice. Does God give advice? I asked specifically for guidance and got a big, fat, whopping nothing (It is a gorgeous day, however. Thank you, God!). And my mind is going a mile a minute. When a possible solution pops into my head, I wonder, "Is that God telling me what to do, or my own manipulative self attempting to control my thoughts?"

And on top of all that, I am a fairly obtuse person, so God could be holding up a "Pick Option 2" sign and I would miss it. Will His answer be clear? Or will God try to teach me a lesson within a lesson by making ME figure it out? Ugh, I hate that! Could he maybe save that for next time?


And the Winner of MISSION: Monday is...

Jo, from Tangled Me... Yay Jo! Now let's all be good sports and congratulate her. And while you're at it, congratulate yourselves because ALL of you (yes ALL) will be entered into our GRAND PRIZE END OF YEAR GIVEAWAY. AND... If you come back and play next week, you will be entered again.

So much winning around here. It just puts a smile on my face.

Just to recap, Jo has won a FAB blog makeover from Rachel at Blog Candy (thanks, Rachel!) AND will be one of our featured Blogs in next week's MISSION: Monday.

See you all next week, Agents! Good work!



Monday, November 10, 2008

MISSION: Monday

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Good Morning Blogger Agents.

The agency has uncovered a number of blogs you may not have been following, and we have designed a weekly giveaway around helping you discover some fantastic blogs.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to visit the blogs below, discover their secrets, and report back here. The bloggers featured will be past winners, deserving contributors, or just damn good and hilarious writers worth viewing.

Your reward will be, let us say, substantial. We will offer a weekly prize to one blog explorer, but then EVERY person who plays will be entered each week into the Grand Prize drawing at the end of the year. The weekly winner will also have their blog featured in the following week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway! Explore early, Explore often, Agents. Riches await.

This week's MISSION: Monday Giveaway: A FREE Blog Makeover "Ultimate Design Package" AND a Holiday/Winter themed header and background from Rachel at Blog Candy Designs valued at $65!!! In addition, the winner will have her/his blog used as a feature blog in the next week's Mission!!

bag


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To enter the Giveaway, you will be visiting 3 blogs...follow these steps:

Step 1. Fill out a Mr Linky below. (Closes at Midnight, CST)



Step 2. Visit each of the following 3 featured blog links, find the answer to the question posted at each blog, and leave a comment on their blog to prove you were there (But dont post the answers to the questions!!)...this is important- we are trying to expose you to great blogs out there, so take the time to have a look around!

Pulsipher Predilections (Author - Kristina)
Postcards From The Edge (Author - SoxyDeb)
And last week's winner...
All Because Two People Fell In Love (Author - Joy)


Step 3. What happens then? We will stop taking entries at Midnight on Monday, and then we will draw a winner using a random number generator, and email that person to ask for the answers to the questions. So make sure you are ready! The weekly winner will receive the mentioned prize, and ALL entrants will be entered into the year ending drawing for the BIG prize.


Want to support "MISSION: Monday" by putting a button on your blog? Copy and paste the code below to your blog...

and it will look like this:
MissionMonday


Three great blogs await your discovery, Blogger Agents...make us proud.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Beating A Dead Horse

I know, I know... I can't seem to shut up about my husband, but this was just way too unbelievable to keep to myself.

It's kind of a long and unimportant story as to how my husband decided that today, of all days, he would see what's been happening on Dirty Socks & Pizza. Usually, as long as I am available to tell him how great he is for making the beds, and "oooh and ahhh" over his disaster evacuation plans, I can pretty much do whatever I want. Alas, not today...

I walk into the kitchen and he's sitting at the laptop, reading my post where I basically rescind every nice thing I have ever said about him. He looks up, quite seriously, and says, "You should have written that I am obsessed with CLASSIC Corvettes. I don't want people thinking that I like just any Corvette." 

Hello?? After reading that I have issues with just about every aspect of his personality, THIS is what's on his mind?

I can't decide if this simply proves MY point, or makes him even more lovable? Darn him!

Diagnosis PPR (Post-Post Regret)

Surely this is already an established diagnosis here in Blogtopia! You post something and then, for whatever reason, wake up regretting it? I would imagine there would be a lot of PPR among those that enjoy a cocktail (or 2 or 10) while typing. Or maybe a post gets published while in the heat of an argument, and once tempers cool, the regret begins to swell.

Well, I was not drunk or mad when I posted the tribute to my husband (and Mr. McCain), but boy, am I regretting it. Not because of any negativity among commentators. Everyone has been gracious, kind and even effusive. And that's exactly the problem. 

I think I may have gotten a little carried away. Yes, everything I wrote is indeed... true. He's a gifted doc with an amazing bedside manner. He is crazy about his kids... blah blah blah. But he also annoys the crap out of me sometimes (like now) and doesn't have the most consistent personal hygiene habits in the world. He confuses my birthday with our anniversary every single year (in his defense, they are only one day apart), and has given me presents for said events from the hospital gift shop, on more than one occasion. He's obsessed with Corvettes, and loves to "toot his own horn" about the laundry he does. He loads the dishwasher with the clear expectation that I fawn and offer thanks. He worries to the point of paranoia, and insists that there are people actively planning to murder our entire family.

So I have obviously typed myself into the proverbial corner. Who am I going to turn to when I want to bitch about Mr. Wonderful (like now)? I implore you to forget I ever brought up his many good points and focus only on the negative. Please? For me?