Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween Triple Threat

In an attempt to cover all my bases, please everybody, maximize my readership, and expose my doormat-itude, I present to you Photo Story Friday, Haiku Friday, AND My Required Boo'd Post.

 I have gotten boo'd
Here's a Halloween Haiku
Now you've been boo'd, too!

Yes, in my haiku, I have Boo'd you all. If you've read it, you've been Boo'd. And there is no way to prove to me that your eyes didn't fall upon the words, even fleetingly. So Boo, You! The only person who has a pass is the outrageous (and beautiful and skinny and very clearly insane) Tena over at My Therapy, since she Boo'd me. But don't worry, I have way too much on my mind right now (see photo below) to keep track of those who take me at my word, and those who ignore everything I say. So consider it a gift, and do with it what you will.

And finally, to address Photo Story Friday, here's a re-run (back by popular demand) from last Halloween, in keeping with the obvious theme of today's festivities. Yes, it's Sister Mary Beans, my 11 yo cross-dresser. This year, he is taking it to the next level and is dressing up as a fairy princess cow. I, too, see the obvious need for therapy, but he has long division to concentrate on, so I am ignoring the red flags for now.

This message has been brought to you, but probably not approved by, Cecily and MamaGeek, the thoughtful creators and caretakers of Photo Story Friday.

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

and Jennifer and Christina over at

Haiku Friday

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Will You Still Love Me(me) Tomorrow?

I've been tagged again, and if you need proof, go visit Brenda Jean, who resides In the Treetop, and she'll vouch for me. Actually, go visit her anyway, because her blog is just so peaceful, welcoming and fun (and she has a cute cat). A nice reprieve when you're in a bad mood. Like the mood I am in this morning. Not a safe place to be while brainstorming six random facts about myself. So, proceed with caution and try not to judge (as tempting as it's going to be).

1. I get very overwhelmed by messes. And lord, do I make big ones. We're talking a bowl of spaghetti doing a 180 and landing on my white couch. Or an open liter of soda tipping over on the floorboard of my car while I'm trapped in traffic. Or shredded carrots in an open blender...flying everywhere. It is all too tempting for me to just walk away. Yep, you heard correctly. I have to fight the urge to simply abandon any large mess I make, knowing my husband will do it for me. Not a great example to set for the kids, but maybe the lesson they'll take away is to always do the bidding of the woman in the house.

2. I drug my kids. Well, not really. I don't drug both...only one. And only on special occasions. I do it for the general well-being of the entire family, I assure you. If left UN-drugged, my son will wake up at 3:00 a.m. on Christmas morning, or on his birthday, or on Ground Hog Day, for that matter. He will be a complete basket case, making us all miserable, and by dawn on any of the aforementioned holidays, we will have opened all the presents, eaten all the food, fights will have broken out and no one will be speaking to each other. So, one little pill at bedtime, and we are all sleeping soundly until a much more reasonable hour, waking refreshed to begin our holiday cheer. Which leads me to...

3. I hate all holidays. I don't know if they tap into some subconscious childhood disappointment or what, but I get cranky and mean and can't seem to enjoy myself. I liken it to PMS. Let's call it PHS, just to make light of a serious and disturbing issue. I can't seem to help myself... Every year, even with my son in a drug-induced coma, I get evil. I just want it all over with. My poor noon every Christmas Day, the tree is taken out to the trash, all the decorations are packed up and all signs of jolliness are GONE.

4. I waste. I leave the lights on. I go through paper towels like they are... disposable. I use tin foil once and ONLY once. BUT...

5. I am going green. Slowly. I have switched all my lightbulbs to those awful spirally ones that can apparently kill everyone in a 10 mile radius, if shattered. Which has happened in my home at least twice in the past six months (see fact #1).

6. When I am in a bad mood, I eat. So I am off to comfort myself with a carton of ice cream (and YES, I am going to dig out all the chunks and cookies and caramel ribbons selfishly and shamelessly!)...

Now I get to tag 6 innocent victims who are probably wishing they had never crossed my path. Too late! You can block me or un-follow me or send me hate mail AFTER you get your Tag Post complete, listing YOUR 6 random facts, and tagging 6 of YOUR own victims. Drum roll, please...

1. Tony, my new male blog-friend (1 of 2)
2. Wendy, my favorite redhead (and I mean RED)
3. Lindsay, because I am obsessed with her daughter, Livers
4. Beth, who intrigues me
5. Chef Grace, whose cakes will awe you
6. Jessica, another brown-eyed gal, so I've gotta love her

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

WW-Blushing Bride and Buffoon Groom

Many of you have read the crazy tales of my courtship, and it is therapeutic for me to recount them (reminds me that I may have a reason or two to like my husband, which is always good)...

So after spilling my guts about our matching tattoos and drunken engagement in the loo, it is only fitting that we bring it on home with a quick run down of the actual wedding.

It didn't take long after getting engaged for us to figure out that the whole big wedding thing was just not for us. Having my (future) in-laws actually forbid any holy union, whatsoever, kind of forced our hand. Plus it all just seemed so silly and unnecessary. We were in love and wanted to be together all the time... Why jump through so many hoops (expensive hoops, to boot!)?

Well, as re-enacted in this lovely photo, we went to the local courthouse and got 'er done. I remember it being a sweet, albeit brief, ceremony. The two clerks that ended up being our witnesses even got a little teary.

There was no time for a honeymoon, as my honey had to go back to work immediately after the ceremony. I am sure we celebrated drunkenly and obnoxiously later in the week, with a pizza and a six-pack.

Now don't be hatin'...Not everyone can have the fairy tale ending. I just got lucky.

And, as always, you have Ms. Angie over at Seven Clown Circus to thank for enabling me.

Monday, October 27, 2008

My Spiritual Journey: Finding My Inner To-Do List

I take this yoga class, where we spend the last ten minutes of each class meditating. In theory, it is my favorite part of the class. The bad (exercise) part is over, and we get to just lie there, renewing our minds and spirits. There's only one problem--I can't, FOR THE LIFE OF ME, clear my head properly, so all that quiet visualization crap can work its magic. This is a typical conversation I have with myself, played out in my head, each Thursday morning...

"What all do I need to get accomplished today?"

"It doesn't matter now. You can worry about it later. You need to clear your head."

"Ugh, that lady next to me got a pretty intimate shot of my Downward Dog. Surely she's not offended by my sweaty crotch."

"Shut up. You have to let your mind go completely blank."

"But you know my crotch HAS to be sweaty. And besides, I can't do blank. Maybe if I picture someplace peaceful and calm."

"Yes, like a field of flowers with a stream cutting through it."

"Okay, yes... green grass, calm stream... Wait, is that my chiropractor canoeing through the stream?!?!"

"Maybe just picture the blue sky. Forget the stream."

"Okay, blue sky. Bright sun... Why is my son's face smiling evilly back at me, like that godforsaken Teletubbies sun-baby? Do you think he's sorry for how he acted this morning? "

"Look, if you want to truly get the benefit of this, you are going to have to clear your head!"

"Okay, okay. But remind me I have GOT to go to the grocery store today."

"Will do... Now concentrate on NOT concentrating..."

"I can't forget to swing by Target, either."

"Fine. Enough. Shhh..."

"Is that a cell phone ringing?? The nerve of some people!"

"Quit being so judgmental. Maybe if you would get this whole meditating thing, your newfound inner peace would make you a better person."

"You are so right. I am a bad person. I really need to get back in touch with my spiritual side."

"No kidding. Time's up... Back to the real world."

"Now what all did I need to do today???"

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Paying it Forward, Baby

author's note: While there are more than three comments posted, I still don't have three participants (this will all make sense once you read the post). So, a) feel free to sign up for this very fun exercise or b) leave me a comment anyway!

Just when my mind went blank and the temptation to let yet another weekend go by without posting, a lovely little surprise landed right in my lap (actually it landed in my blogroll, but whatevs...).

Stacey, the well-dressed AND well-coiffed author of Havoc and Mayhem is paying it forward today. Thanks to her, so am I.

"Here are the rules: The exchange focuses on doing an act of kindness without expecting anything in return other than that the recipient will, in their turn, pass the kindness along and pay it forward in their own way. This is how it works... I am going to agree to send something fun, inspiring or uplifting to the first 3 bloggers who post a comment on this entry (please leave your email address if I don't all ready have it.).

In turn you will then post about this on your blog, link to me, then send something to the first three people who sign up to play along through your blog. There are no cost restraints, but don't go crazy! The little something you send can be something you made, bought, were given or found. No biggie, just a gift that will make the person smile. Maybe something unique from where you live? And remember that kindness doesn't have to involve money; there are untold ways to help others every single day, everywhere you go - just look around."

So get to it... Leave me a comment telling me you are ready and willing to give and receive. And if you aren't so lucky as to be one of the first three, feel free to go ahead extend a kind word or deed today, without expecting a darn thing in return. "What's in it for me?" is a no-no. Got it?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Island Treasures

Maui really is the paradise everyone says it is. Gorgeous, lush, happy. We had our most memorable family vacation there, snorkeling with ancient turtles, sunning ourselves on deserted beaches, and watching the spectacular whales flip, flop, jump and roll. Truly magical experiences... But those are not the centerpiece of today's Photo Story. 

We participated in the obligatory luau one evening. We probably could have dug around and found something a little more authentic, but we stumbled upon one that promised live music, fire dancing, and FOOD... All the kid-pleasing basics. They started out the evening with a traditional island blessing that my little one took to heart:

Luckily, the food was served right away, and my boys were in HEAVEN. They made a couple of trips through the buffet and did some serious chowing down, as evidenced by the photo below:

Well, the music had barely begun to play, when I looked over and saw this:

Mind you, he was sitting in the front row, with flaming torches, banging drums and scantily clad women right overhead. 

I guess I shouldn't have been surprised, as this is the kid that ate a HUGE steak dinner in NYC, then proceeded to sleep through the entire performance of The Lion King (guess those Orchestra seats were plenty comfortable). 

So it was back to the beach the next morning, for more clear water, colorful fish, and pristine coral... All of which, I am happy to say, he was awake to witness! 

As always, this entrancing tale was made possible by MamaGeek and Cecily, the goddesses who created this mind-expanding exercise we fondly refer to as... Photo Story Friday.

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Hijacking the Bandwagon

Okay, everyone put their hands up and step away from the book. Yes, THE book (or books if you are already completely brainwashed). Maybe I am just being a bad sport because stupid Jay over at Halftime Lessons snubbed my Debbie Meyer Green Bags (who can resist reusable AND made in the USA?) for that silly little book, or maybe I'm feeling left out and my feelings are hurt. Besides, I am way too cutting edge... I can't start reading it now! That would be like walking into the salon and asking for the "Rachel".

So, regardless of my questionable motives, I'm declaring my blog a Twilight-Free zone. I realize I may lose some friends over this, but I feel the need to take an official stand. Call it my platform, if you will. 

I'm not saying you can't continue to swoon and gush elsewhere, just leave it at the door. And for those few of you that choose to stay, let me offer you an alternative. 

Immortality? Check. Mythology? Check. Time travel? Check. All this, and more! This book is not for the faint-hearted, I'll warn you now. Jitterbug Perfume, by Tom Robbins, is raunchy and irreverent. It questions organized religion and societal norms. But more than this, it is a love story. A wonderful, smart, funny love story. If I were to ever actually be invited to join a Book Club (I'm not holding my neighbors can't stand me), this would be my number one choice (or maybe Irving's Hotel New Hampshire, but that's another post). I have read this book probably 15 times, and I love it more today than the first time I picked it up 20 years ago.

Maybe I'll start my own rogue book club, with me as the President, CEO and sole member. Watch out, Oprah.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Another Day in Paradise

So, I tried to give my child away yesterday. I suppose I should feel more ashamed and guilty than I actually do. However, I knew the whole time it was just a silly way to vent my frustration, and that there was NO way in Hell anyone would be remotely interested. Boy, was I right on that last one!

Well, lo and behold, he announced to me yesterday afternoon that he was speaking to me again. Oh joy. He also explained that although I find fault with his methods, he's got the whole school thing under control and presented exhibits A and B (two A's on major tests he didn't study for). Grrr!!! (but phew!) I'm still frustrated that as he continues to show no effort, he continues to succeed. It's going to be much harder to learn good study habits in college than it is to just buckle down now. Believe me... I learned the hard way and I don't want that for him. 

Since I felt a slight obligation to be the "mature" one, I accepted that lame attempt at an apology and kept my lecture fairly brief.  A little Rocky Road and a hug (Who am I fooling? There was no active hugging on his part. Rather, he basically stood close enough to me, and held still just long enough, to allow himself to be hugged) sealed the deal and everyone went to bed happy last night. 

Crisis averted, once again.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Terrific Tuesday GIVEAWAY!!!

This one's easy, gang... No essay to write, no Mr. Linky to complicate things, not even a cute photo of your offspring need be posted. That's right, people, my giveaway is NO STRINGS ATTACHED!

So without further ado, I present to you my offering:

Free to good home! In fact, the home doesn't even have to be that great. Just free to the first person that will take him off my hands. One extremely lazy, potential-wasting, smelly, moody, SLOW teen. Oh, and don't let this photo fool you. The hair and teeth aren't usually this clean. And don't expect him to actually speak to you unless he has an urgent complaint.

Friday, October 17, 2008

What $1 Got Him...

This picture is hardly worth 1,000 words, but the story behind it IS. I haven't written too much about this yet, but my courtship was unconventional, to say the least. We met in November '90, and after the whole tattoo escapade a month later, there was little else to do but make a mad dash to the alter. There was never any question that we were soul mates, it was just a matter of how, and when, to seal the big deal.

Well, one evening, in our favorite speakeasy, yours truly had to make a trip to the ladies room (multiple margaritas will do that to a girl). I had not quite squatted awkwardly, yet hygienically, to do my business, when the door opened behind me. There was my sweetheart, flashing that boyish grin. Dropping to one knee (yes, in the ladies room), he asked for my hand in marriage. I was overwhelmed with joy when I saw him reach into his pocket and pulled out... his wallet??

No, there were no diamonds presented that fateful night. That man of mine glanced into his wallet, pausing to think, and pulled out a single dollar bill, which he then tied around my ring finger. Mind you, he had a twenty in the wallet, too, but rationalized that he needed to save that for more beer. 

If any of you think this girl was disappointed or embarrassed, you don't know moi. Religiously, I would coat it with clear nail polish, rendering it fairly weatherproof.  I wore it proudly through our entire three month engagement, trading it for a simple gold band I had to purchase myself for our wedding day (more on that to come). 

So, as you can see, I have held onto it all these years. Mr. Wonderful has been quite generous in the jewel department since, and what I wear on my ring finger today would hardly raise any disapproving eyebrows. However, I cherish my priceless "engagement dollar" and can't wait to pass it on to my son to present to his one-and-only. I have a feeling it may just weed out any gold-diggers!

This touching story was made possible by the lovely Cecily and MamaGeek, who begat Photo Story Friday. This is my first, and I am excited about more to come. I promise to present better photos and, as always, stories from my heart. I hope I fulfilled all the requirements!

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Thursday, October 16, 2008

What's Wrong With Me?

And I mean in this particular context ONLY...

So, I'm in line at the grocery store, admiring my new bottle of superfab nail polish and my new, extra-early issue of People, when I see that the carton of heavy whipping cream (that's right, Ann...PB dessert time!) was leaking all over the conveyor belt. The poor apologetic clerk (whose fault it clearly was NOT) started cleaning maniacally and paged someone to get me a new one, STAT!! I smiled and told her matter-of-factly, "Oh that's okay, I don't need it. I have to go to the store later anyway."

What?? I wasn't even out of the line yet, and I was already assembling the next grocery list in my head. Why didn't I just go back into the store and make another purchase? Or be rude to the people behind me and make them wait, while I collected what I had forgotten? Or better yet, pay attention to the list in my hand and actually get everything on it the first go round?

Well, I'm off to a different store for my cream, eggs and cereal. Let's hope that's it for today. Oh rats, I forgot we're almost out of skim milk, too.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Bedtime Story or Cautionary Tale? You Decide.

Once upon a time, there were four Bears that lived in the woods with their three pets: Ginger the lazy chocolate lab; Clifford, the extremely needy cat; and Mel, the good natured leopard gecko with a very long life expectancy. One day, Lovely Mama Bear and Precious Baby Bear went to the pet store to buy cat litter, meal worms and dog food for the aforementioned creatures. There happened to be an adoption fair at the store, and Precious Baby Bear immediately fell in love with a little homeless pup named Pepper. Having the extremely large heart that she does (and secretly being in love with Pepper, too), Lovely Mama Bear agreed to bring Pepper home to their cozy Bear house in the woods.

Once home with Pepper, Lovely Mama Bear and Precious Baby Bear introduced Pepper to the rest of the Bears. Stuffy Old Papa Bear said in his meanest, grumpiest Papa Bear voice, "We already HAVE a dog. And a cat. AND A LIZARD!" and stormed into the garage to hammer on something. Moody Teen Bear just rolled his eyes and put his headphones back on.

Lovely Mama Bear and Precious Baby Bear didn't know what to do! Precious Baby Bear said tearfully, "Pepper is ours now, right? Even though Stuffy Old Papa Bear and Moody Teen Bear hate her?"

"Oh of course, sweetie. She's part of the family now," Lovely Mama Bear reassured.

No one was thrown out of the house that night, but Stuffy Old Papa Bear made it very clear that all Pepper-related responsibilities would fall on Lovely Mama Bear's shoulders. Lovely Mama Bear dutifully took on the role of single parent to the helpless orphan and had her trained perfectly in no time. Well, almost. There were a few minor accidents. But Lovely Mama Bear cleaned up after all of them. And then there was the nervous habit Pepper had of chewing on all things wooden. As in wooden stairs, wooden coffee tables, wooden beds. Lovely Mama Bear skillfully patched them with wood-filler, sanded, and stained them all, until they were like new. Then there was the mysterious case of the hives Pepper developed all over her body, rendering her puffy and elephant-dog-like. And of course, who could forget the periodic nervous breakdowns she would have? Frightened for NO apparent reason, she would curl up in a ball on the couch and shake and shiver for hours. And did I mention the accidents? It got so out of control, Stuffy Old Papa Bear renamed her Pee-per, well, for obvious reasons. No one was finding it cute. Not even her biggest fans.

But just when Lovely Mama Bear was getting discouraged and wondering if it might be time for her to "develop an allergy", things suddenly turned around! Believe it or not, Moody Teen Bear was the easiest to win over. He and Pepper happened to be outside at the same time one day, which was a fortuitous coincidence. In no time, Moody Teen Bear was chasing her around the yard and playing fetch with her. He was impressed by her actual dog-like qualities that Ginger, the lazy lab never fully embraced.

But Stuffy Old Papa Bear wouldn't budge. Until... Well, still to this day, no one knows how Pee-per (which at this point has lovingly been shortened to Peeps) managed to bore her way into Stuffy Old Papa Bear's cold heart, but you can see for yourself that she has. Who knows what, exactly, makes her so irresistible? Regardless, none of the Bears could imagine life without her. Every night, as Stuffy Old Not So Horrible Papa Bear goes to sleep, he reaches over and gives little Peeps a kiss and a pat.

And so, they all lived very happily, and messily, and fur-fully ever after.

Wordful (and Painful) Wednesday

Well, well, it was the big Homecoming shindig for the Teen Scene this weekend. Oh my. Drama, hairspray, sequins... What more could you ask for?

What is so great about my boys, is how I can just throw some clothing at them, they shrug, put it on, and five minutes later are ready to walk out the door. There have been a few exceptions to this, revolving mainly around hair issues (another day, another post), but for the most part, they are quite simple. Then there are the girls they like to hang around with. Ah, the girls...

Hours upon hours later, the girls are all beautified-- flat-ironed or diffused, shimmery make up clumsily applied, mildly inappropriate dresses donned. 

So this year, the little posse met up before dinner so the parents could document the hormonal frenzy. Mine did not have a date, so he enjoyed dinner with the gang, and then went to a friend's for a sleepover, opting out of the sweaty nightmare they call the dance. Last year's "festivities" with psycho-girlfriend-from-Hell (think Fatal Attraction, but brunette) was probably still vividly imprinted on his brain.

Anyway, my husband captured this photo of one of my son's gal pals that made me smile. I don't know if she bandaged her heels as a prophylactic measure, anticipating a full night of dancing, or if she was already suffering from some catastrophic heel disorder. I imagine it was the former, which is so sweet. A 14 year old tomboy, looking more beautiful than I had ever seen her, in heels higher than she had ever worn before, excited for her first Homecoming dance. She probably had a whole headful of ideas of how the evening would unfold. 

Come to find out, she didn't have a very good time (something about a boy, of course), which is too bad because she is a doll with a big heart. Maybe next year...

Now go check out all the wonderfully wordful photos listed over at Angie's place.

Friday, October 10, 2008

All About Me(me), Part II

Well, according to a certain big fat know-it-all that lives at my house (that FOR NOW shall remain nameless), I have not been fully honest with you people. Apparently, yesterday I revealed only the innocent, mildly charming random facts about me, while continuing to conceal the dark truth...

So, fine. I'll come clean. The scandalous random fact you should know about me is I am extremely selfish when it comes to food.  There. I said it. This manifests itself in two distinct ways (maybe more, but that same spoiled sport who wants me exposed only complains about these).

1) I don't scoop my ice cream, I plunder and pillage it. I follow the "chunk" trail... Collecting (quite skillfully, if I do say so myself) all of the yummy cookies, caramel ribbons, and chocolate chips for my own bowl. What remains for the rest of the family is basically a ransacked carton of vanilla ice cream. 

2) I'll concede #1, but this one is unfair. I order what I want to eat at restaurants. What?! Sorry, but I have no issue with ordering the same dish everyone else has selected, because I have absolutely no intention of sharing. You order what you want to eat, and I'll do the same. I don't get the whole, "Oh, I was going to order the salmon, but since you are, I guess I'll go with the pork chops." Huh? You want salmon? Well, order it, because I'm not giving you any of mine. And don't panic, I have no interest in your pork chops. Is there really a problem here?

So there it is, folks. Hate me if you must, but now at least you have the truth...

Thursday, October 9, 2008

He Loves Meme, He Loves Meme Not...

So, my Beadiful friend, Ann, tagged me with what I think is a meme. I'll need Carissa, who really is both good and crazy (and brilliant), to verify this. But meme, or no meme, I have listed below 6 random facts about yours truly. Nothing earth-shattering. Certainly nothing of use. But definitely all me. Enjoy!

1. I love TV (the more mindless, the better), and I do not think this disqualifies me from engaging in intelligent thought and being an active participant in current political/intellectual discourse. Heck, when Heidi Montag endorsed John McCain, I was the only educated one on the block (over the age of 15, anyway). 

2. I worship my kids (although they would probably argue otherwise). This may not be breaking news to all you moms, but bears mentioning, nonetheless. 

3. I am adopted. Oh listen, there's just a bounty of blog treasure in that little tidbit (which you will all be subjected to in the months ahead). For now, let's just say that the life I narrowly escaped would have definitely led me elsewhere.  

4. Blood really can be thicker than water (see #3). Nothing makes me happier than an afternoon on the couch, eating burgers and watching Nascar. This one's in the genes, because it certainly isn't anything I was exposed to growing up. Go Carl Edwards, you back-flippin' babe!

5.  I adore the Bee Gees. Let's get real... You know Barry's the brains and the brawn behind that whole Brothers Gibb operation. I've always liked him best. Maybe that's because he's the only person I've ever seen that may be hairier than I am. Come on, I dare you to not sing along with this one. And just look how sincere they are. Swooooooonnnnn.....

6. I lose my shoes, particularly my favorite flip-flops, with alarming regularity. They're usually hiding under the couch, but I am too lazy to bend down and look. I wish I could just snap my fingers and they would reappear. Oh, how I love the idea of super powers. They would just make my life a whole heck of a lot easier.

And speaking of power... Now I get to wield mine and tag someone else for us to all get to know a little better. The Mommy, over at Perfect Pen, is a young mom with a lot to say. I've enjoyed reading about her, so I can't wait to learn more. Specifically, 6 random facts. Get to it, little momma!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Wordful Wednesday-Ode to Angie AND Al Gore

I'm kind of flying by the seat of my pants, here, so bear with me. Wordful Wednesday sounds intriguing, but being as obtuse as I am, I'm not completely sure what I am suppose to do. Or if I am even welcome to participate. But, come on, let's give it a try...

What appears to be requirement #1: Post a photo. Check.

What appears to be requirement #2: Elaborate loquaciously on aforementioned photo. Check.

SO, this photo would founder in WordLESS Wednesday. Yarn? Yawn! But there are definitely photos that do speak 1,000 words without outside help, so I'm not completely abandoning the idea of trying Wordless Wednesday. Just not today...

ANYWAY, not much to look at, eh? Well, there's much more to this than meets the eye. You see, this represents my weekend activity: teaching myself to knit. Now, I know I have a ways to go before this becomes anything presentable, and I am not claiming to be talented or anything. But what's cool is I figured this all out online. I just googled "knitting instruction" and, voila... videos, blogs, photos... anything and everything needed to learn a new skill! So now I can't wait to get finished with this scarf (?), so I can move onto something else. The world really is my oyster! Embossing? German? Flamenco dancing? LOVE IT! 

What appears to be requirement #3: Mention our fearless leader in this fun endeavor, Angie at 7 Clown Circus. Check.

Angie has a beautiful, smart blog that makes even the casual passerby feel welcome. Look at me... I landed there by accident and here I am, participating in Wordful Wednesday... a fun tradition I plan to propagate and promote shamelessly! Thanks, Angie! I hope I did you proud.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Lions and Tigers and Cross-Dressers, Oh My!

In the spirit of getting in the spirit, and empowered by wondermom, Jyl over at Mommy Gossip, I decided to take a little walk down memory lane to see if any of my boys' halloween costumes could inspire. There is good news and there is bad. Let's get the bad out of the way...

Over the past few years, as the boys have gotten older, I have noted (what I am hoping is) a satirical tone in their costume choices. Last year's are hardly worth posting, but in the name of full disclosure, here they are:

Yes, that's right, the cheerleader and the nun. In defense of the cheerleader (although anyone who has seen THIS isn't going to buy it), his girlfriend at the time dressed as a football player, so it was kind of cute. The nun... well, there just isn't any explanation. Sorry.

Now to the good news! There were many halloweens where the boys looked very appropriate. Adorable even. Note the following examples:

Which brings me to my favorite costume of all... Both boys wore this and looked equally sweet in it. What's really great about it is  1) it's warm and comfy 2) it's quick and EASY to make and 3) it's super cute!

You simply start with a yellow hooded sweatshirt and sweatpants. The hood is the only part requiring much work. Sew on ears and use yarn to create the "mane". Finally, make a little tail (I used matching yellow fabric, with yarn fringed on the end). Draw whiskers on your victim and voila... a ferocious little lion.

Feel free to steal this idea, as I stole it from someone, as well.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

A Halftime Lesson on Football Sunday. And Go Skins!

I will let you in on a little secret. Not because I want to (I hate sharing), but in order to be eligible to win some awesomely beautiful loot, I have to. So here goes...

The best (male) blogger I know is my friend, Jay. Okay, he's the only male blogger I actually know, but how lucky am I? Everyday, he makes my day a tad bit better... I know I can go to his blog whenever I am looking for a big laugh, a little perspective, a keen observation, or some good advice. 

And to make a good thing even better, he has launched a great contest with cool prizes. I encourage everyone to take a gander. You'll want to enter the contest, and you'll definitely want to bookmark his site. Check it out...


Friday, October 3, 2008

Who Wears the Pants?

Ok, boys, this is where you politely excuse yourself and come back tomorrow. 

So, I guess I really am the one that wears the pants in the family. I don't necessarily wield any significant power (well, yes I do), but I certainly am the sweatiest AND the hairiest member of the pack. I don't find it a total assault on my femininity that my husband can actual GO WITHOUT deodorant, while if I leave the hermetically controlled environment called my house (70 degrees, 0% humidity year-round), I begin to sweat profusely-- beaded forehead, pit-stains, and all. 

But being hairier than the three males in my house is so unfabulous. It can get a girl down. So you'd think I would do a better job of hair removal than I actually do. But I can't seem to keep up. Once the legs get shaved, the eyebrows have grown together. By the time I have those puppies cleaned up, my furry, sweaty pits need addressing. And did I actually spot a "goat hair" on my chin??? Maybe the answer is to just remove all the mirrors from my house, start burning incense and let the hair grow where it may. Gross. No thank you.

So I have tried to prioritize my hair removal needs and have spent years trying to figure out the best method of removal. Of course, each area requires a different method, I have found. Enjoying the results of tweezing on my eyebrows, I once tried to tweeze my legs. 2 hours later, my back had cramped up, I couldn't move my fingers, and felt perhaps, what was the early stages of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. I did have awfully smooth legs (well, actually just one leg... I never got to the second) for quite some time.

But I have realized that no one else really seems to notice, so how hairy can I be? My husband doesn't seem to care if my legs are just a little prickly, and I don't think people are distracted by the stray hairs working their way down my eyelids, but if they are, screw 'em. What is most likely is everyone else is so distracted by their own imperfections, they hardly have time to notice mine. 

There is no moral to this story. If there is, would someone please point it out to me?

Happy Friday!!

oh, and ps: check out amelia bedelia's funny post that inspired me to "go there".

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Have Your Cake, Eat It Too, AND Have Time to Spare!

It's no secret that I hate to cook. I am not very good at it, I can never seem to make the appropriate amount of food and no one in my house does leftovers (except the dogs, and this is becoming a problem). I DO, however, love to bake. I have to admit that I am the keeper and administrator of one of the very best chocolate sheet-cake recipes ever. However, I am not sure I am ready to divulge the secret of its deliciousness with the rest of the world yet, as it is one of the only things I can actually brag about when it comes to all things "mom". 

But anyway, the only thing that makes baking even more fun is cheating!! Some of my favorite "homemade" recipes are probably more like hybrids. Start with a cake mix, add a few ingredients to fancy it up, and voila... a homemade masterpiece. 

So, in the name of posting something that can actually be useful to others, here is my recipe for Lemon Apricot Cake. Enjoy! Oh, and boys (meaning Jay), don't spend too much time trying to figure out what this all means. Just print and hand off to your leader. She'll thank you.

1 pkg. lemon cake mix
3/4 c. oil
1 c. apricot nectar
1/2 c. sugar
4 eggs

mix the above ingredients, pour into a lightly greased bundt pan and bake for 1 hour (more or less) at 325 degrees.

glaze: one c. powdered sugar and 1 or 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. I usually just kind of eye it. I start with one teaspoon of the juice, stir, and add more until the mixture seems appropriately glaze-like. 

invert cake onto cake plate and drizzle with the glaze. I like to go heavy on the drizzling. 

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Awards Are a Girl's Best Friend