Thursday, November 27, 2008

What I'm Thankful For

There's a lot to be thankful for these days...I certainly am thankful for food, a roof over my head, clothes on my back, my health and family. But if I had to make a quick list of specifics, these would rate up near the top:

I am thankful for:

* Execedrin Migraine medicine
* Peeing by myself (even if it's after they go to counts!)
* A good glass of Cab...even if it's in a plastic cup so they won't break it
* The candy stash the kids don't know about
* $2 a gallon gas
* Onion Rings
* My's not fancy, but does its job
* Spray N' Wash..if that doesn't get it out I'm thankful for bleach
* Boys who are old enough to pick up dog poop
* Nightlights; running a sick child to the bathroom in the middle of the night is easier
* DVR's..what did we ever do before them?
* Good days at school
* Sunglasses big enough to cover the bags under your eyes

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Holiday Babies

I guess it's fitting, given that I am a holiday baby of sorts that I would have my own holiday birthday child. I grew up with the dual gifts and the Christmas tree not going up until 10 days before Christmas to 'honor' my birthday. At least my daughter is a Thanksgiving and not Christmas baby. The one that came the day after her mother cooked Thanksgiving dinner for 20..great planning on my part. Trying to put together a birthday in the midst of a holiday sucks. Especially this year. With me trying to transition from stay-at-home mommy to mommy that works dropping the ball all over the place is difficult, at best. This year my motto is 'you're lucky you're getting a party in the first place'. All the previous handmade invitations, homemade fire engine birthday cakes, lovingly put together treat bags are out the window. This year is more like 'great, we found a place with a cancellation', running to the dollar section for Princess favors and evite invitations that went out a week before the party. So here I sit in a panic of mommy-guilt that comes with the wonder if anyone will come. I've had 2 RSVP's and a maybe. One 'yes, we can make it' phone call came with my daughter in the bath. The conversation went something like this:

Me (on the phone, but telling my daughter): Guess what, Christine is coming to your birthday party.

My Baby Girl: But I didn't invite Christine mommy

Me: Isn't that great she can come!

My Baby Girl: (Crying and starting to scream) I DON'T LIKE CHRISTINE..I DON'T WANT HER AT MY PARTY!!!!

Can you imagine my I'm still on the phone with Christine's mom! I wanted to pull my daughter out of the bath and scream at her how lucky she is that someone she knows is coming! I gave out a bunch of invites to her classmates, hoping the odds were with me since I was so late...and this is what I get! At this point, she doesn't get to be choosy. I'm ready to start pulling anyone off the street who is somewhere in the vicinity of the toddler years and shove them in a party room. I can picture it now..."Mommy, who are these people"..."Mommy gave you a Meet New Friends party, sweetie". Anyone free this Sunday? Have kids? Nieces? Nephews? A 3 year old who lives a few doors down? You're welcome to come!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008


This began as some thoughts on competition in business, but I had to post here on a more personal level. Topic: women and competition. Throughout our history of trying to break through the glass ceiling, women have struggled on so many levels. The responsibilities, fears and freedoms of being a woman, wife, mom. Let's face it, as women we have so much on our plate. Regardless of how many children you have, being a mom is tough...the lack of time for yourself, the endless tasks to complete..whether it be school involvement, a job outside the home, finances, shuttling kids to playdates and practices, teaching the lessons important in life and keeping them generally out of trouble. We all know that our job is not just a matter of bringing home a paycheck (bitchy comment, yes..but we're venting here) The whole 50/50 thing is more like 80/20 if we're lucky...and that's if you're married. In the chaos that is our lives, it seems that we could come together and help each other out. Why are the stay at home moms always thinking that working moms have it easier, and vise-versa? We are all moms...we are all women. We all want the same things. Instead of tearing each other down..let's support each other in our dreams, as well as our responsibilities. The national women's conference was last month hosted by Maria Shriver with some amazing women speaking on issues we all face. It's refreshing to hear powerful women speaking of the difficult times they have with their own children, and day-to-day challenges. A friend of mine went and wrote about some of the important ideas that stayed with her. It was really stiring to me so I wanted to share a portion of it:

Arnold Schwarzenegger & Warren Buffet spoke... and agreed that more equality is still needed for women in politics. Elections this year have shown America is ready for change! Enormous intellectual and conscientious role by women is not new but more appreciated now than in the past.

Maria Shriver, First Lady of California... What are you going to do with your one wild and precious life? Usually it is fear that holds us back from fear to freedom. If you do not feel fear, you don't feel courage. You cannot wait until the fear goes away to take action. The fear goes away when you take action. She shared a quote from Eleanor Roosevelt: "Staying in fear keeps you from believing in yourself. You must do one thing every day that scares you." Stop, slow down and connect. Nurture one another. We are here to love one another, connect and sea. Listening is love. We empower. As moms, we are doing our best.

Christiane Amanpour, CNN was so interesting and insightful speaking about how women can be the architects of change... There are more women elected to high office in other countries than in the United States. We expect the best and the brightest in every profession so why not with politics and with journalists. We need to use success and power to create change both locally and nationally.

Madeleine Albright, former Secretary of State was so right when she said... Women need to help other women! She also went on to talk about how wrong it is for women to bring each other down. She also spoke about how to be effective and active without being angry. Respect the women before you that have been the generations of change.

Dr. Condoleezza Rice, United States Secretary of State shared... we need to continue to teach girls that they can be anything if we are going to continue to break through the glass ceiling. Don't let someone else define who you "ought to be". Do what you love. There needs to be equal access to education for everybody. It does not matter where you came from, it matters where you are going.

Indra Nooyi, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, PepsiCo... The glass ceiling will be broken when all women help other women. Women need to learn to trust other women.

Cherie Blair, Human Rights Advocate and Wife of Former Prime Minister Tony Blair said... Change comes when men and women work together equally. Being more subtle as an advocate is more effective. Do it as a woman... We do not have to do it the same way as a man. Find your voice and let it be a woman's voice.

The final messages I left with were...

Use your voice to change the world!

Women need to learn to trust other women.

What are you going to do with your

one wild and precious life?

Don't you just want to kill her!!

Sent my sister-in-law an email I had gotten about a photographer in her area taking Christmas pictures this weekend really cheap (I of course, haven't gotten a picture yet of my own little rascals). Love her to death, but she had pictures taken several weeks ago, ordered the cards, has them sealed up in the envelopes already with more than half of her Christmas shopping done! A wonderful reminder of how organized I was with only one child. Fine, my mind is like a sieve and I'm not sure I was ever that organized but it sounds good. Now yes, she still have lots of other things going on, and I'm really happy for her she's ahead of the game. I always say I'll be so I can enjoy the holiday with my kids..but every holiday just seems like chaos regardless of how early I prepare. I'm still up at 3am on Christmas Eve wrapping a gazillion stocking stuffers. While motherhood of any number is a challenge, I thought I'd take a look back at the pros and cons. I still secretly know I've got it easier than many when I think of my friend with SEVEN..all ages 9 and under (if that's not something that would send me drinking out of a paper bag, I don't know what would!) But, I look at her life and her large, close family and also know how lucky they are. Here we go:

Pros of Having ONE child:
  • Huge possibility of getting your body back - even if it takes a while, it comes back
  • Greater chance of not losing one in a store - one fits neatly in a cart. More than one, gives one the opportunity to hide between the racks while the others provide a distraction
  • Easier to pull one over on - older siblings always ruin it for the younger ones..with the 9 year old saying in front of his tearful 3 year old sister "I really don't think there's a Santa..what about the fakes at the mall?"
  • Less noise in the car
  • Less noise in the house
  • Less noise
Cons on having ONE:
  • I'm still thinking..I'll get back to you on this one
Pros of having lots of them:
  • Making the older ones play hide and seek with the little one so you can shower (also a con when that little one goes outside by himself to look for his brother while you're in the shower)
  • People believe you when you use the 'insanity' plea.
  • When at the doctor, you get in and out faster - they normally don't want to inflict the chaos, fighting and noise on the other patients in the waiting room.
  • Better chance of at least one turning out normal
Cons on having many:
  • Picking your breasts off the floor to put in your bra when you get dressed
  • Having your kids think you're a road map because of all the stretch marks
  • A moment to yourself means you have to hide in the closet (especially if you want to eat chips or candy) and even then you have about 90 seconds (I've timed it)
Yes, we all have our own challenges regardless of number of kids. Let me know yours..I'd hate to think I'm alone in the chaos!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I'm a Marilyn!

Take the female icon test and find out who you are! I am a Marilyn...

You are a Marilyn -- "I am affectionate and skeptical."

Marilyns are responsible, trustworthy, and value loyalty to family, friends, groups, and causes. Their personalities range broadly from reserved and timid to outspoken and confrontative.

How to Get Along with Me
  • * Be direct and clear
  • * Listen to me carefully
  • * Don't judge me for my anxiety
  • * Work things through with me
  • * Reassure me that everything is OK between us
  • * Laugh and make jokes with me
  • * Gently push me toward new experiences
  • * Try not to overreact to my overreacting.

What I Like About Being a Marilyn
  • * being committed and faithful to family and friends
  • * being responsible and hardworking
  • * being compassionate toward others
  • * having intellect and wit
  • * being a nonconformist
  • * confronting danger bravely
  • * being direct and assertive

What's Hard About Being a Marilyn
  • * the constant push and pull involved in trying to make up my mind
  • * procrastinating because of fear of failure; having little confidence in myself
  • * fearing being abandoned or taken advantage of
  • * exhausting myself by worrying and scanning for danger
  • * wishing I had a rule book at work so I could do everything right
  • * being too critical of myself when I haven't lived up to my expectations

Marilyns as Children Often
  • * are friendly, likable, and dependable, and/or sarcastic, bossy, and stubborn
  • * are anxious and hypervigilant; anticipate danger
  • * form a team of "us against them" with a best friend or parent
  • * look to groups or authorities to protect them and/or question authority and rebel
  • * are neglected or abused, come from unpredictable or alcoholic families, and/or take on the fearfulness of an overly anxious parent

Marilyns as Parents
  • * are often loving, nurturing, and have a strong sense of duty
  • * are sometimes reluctant to give their children independence
  • * worry more than most that their children will get hurt
  • * sometimes have trouble saying no and setting boundaries
Leave a comment and let me know who you are!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

A Few Hours Left

Only a few hours left...make sure you get out and VOTE!! We're having record exciting. As an added incentive, Starbucks is giving free cups of coffee to those wearing their "I Voted" stickers. Also, Krispy Kreme is giving a free patriotic doughnut if you voted (Yes, I still lament the closure of so many of their's impossible to find them "hot" anymore.) Damn that healthy movement!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Drumroll Please!

And the winner of our Bloggy Carnival contest is CHELLE !!! Congratulations! I'm sending you an email.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Yay! It's Over

Thankfully Halloween is now over..all we have left to do is the clean-up. Cleaning up the rained on, soggy spider webs from the bushes, the scraps of material from a last-minute Aladdin costume, and the loads of empty goodie bags brought home from school. It's now time to look forward to finding candy wrappers between the sheets of the bed and cavities. I still think whoever invented this holiday should have rocks thrown at him (you know it wasn't a mom that created it). We spend money on pumpkins, because everybody has to carve their least I was smart this year and gave my daughter a marker! She then drew all over it and herself and proceeded to coerce her brother into carving hers while she rode her bike and made him scoop out her seeds because they were "icky." We then send our children off into the darkness, wielding weapons no-less, to beg strangers for candy, only to inspect it, give them one piece because they've been eating it all day, and eat the majority of it after they go to bed. After the chaos is all over, we pack away the scary decorations, bring out Thanksgiving stuff, and watch our children (if they're like mine the very next morning) get with the calendar and pronounce there to be only 54 days left until Christmas. So until next year, another Halloween under our belts. Hope yours was a good one!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Have Lots of Kids..Your Odds are Better

Yes, this is my new motto. The more kids you have, the greater chances you have of at least one of them turning out OK. This is the ending to my costume drama. I'm still sitting here with my Sponge Bob band aid from the giant slash to the finger last night at midnight putting the costume together for the kid I forgot (scroll down to read about my total lack of memory for anything that happened more than an hour ago). It's one of those moments where you have a bag of material, beads and glue and somewhere in your mind you put a check next to the "have costume" box. Last night I was up making an Aladdin costume for the one that just can't be easy and get a scary mask or one-piece zip up costume (he was a penguin last year). I got everything glued down, hand stitched (because I don't sew), tied on, and went to bed crossing my fingers. At 6 am, because they can never sleep in, he gets up and talks incessantly not about the costume itself, but how great it was because I stayed up and made it for him (he knows I'm creatively challenged). Just when you least expect it, they pull out all this gratefulness and love that makes the rest of it worthwhile. So he didn't wear the hat (how can you blame him, the sour cream tub probably still smelled and it was held together with kite string), the puffy paint was still wet, but he wore it proudly... even with his brother laughing (who of course, suffered the wrath of his father and told his Wii was going in the trash). Can you believe I pulled it off? Actually, it was more him than anything I did. So the costume parade at school is done, just the nighttime to go. Besides, who will notice anything falling off of it in the dark?

Here's a picture of how it turned out (my boy's the proud, smiling one in the puffy, purple pants!) Not really a great shot, but it's hard to get anything at those parades!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

How Do You Forget About a Costume the Day Before Halloween?

I have admitted about a million times before that my mind is like a sieve these days..has been since my first one turned 2. That's a lot of years of forgetfulness. Ask me about anything that happened 2 days ago and forget it. What what I talking about? Oh, right costumes. Let's start at the beginning. My youngest son (Thing 2- 7 years old) wants to be Aladdin for Halloween. Disney doesn't make an Aladdin costume for boys. They make them for adults, but not kids..go figure. I'd love to see a man walking around with the puffy pants and velvet vest who's wife didn't force him to wear it because she wanted to be Jasmin...not that I understand that either. After going through three pregnancies, this is not a stomach I would want to bare to the world. I am, after all over 30 and past the point of sexy costumes. I'm more like the mean witch with a flowing robe that hides everything. Back to my boy. The only Aladdin costume I found was in several costume shops in England and I am certainly not paying a gazillion dollars to have a piece of gold lame that's going to rip in 10 minutes shipped here. So, being the dutiful mom I went to Walmart and bought a crapload of material, beads and felt. Keep in mind I can't sew, so of course in the basket went that "no sew" fabric glue, too. Can you only imagine the poor kid being made fun of? This is something that I do..several weeks before any sort of event, I get all creative with lofty ideas of a hidden Martha Stewart inside me. Not only is she not there, she's sitting on my shoulder laughing. Then, the stuff sits in a bag until the night before and I freak out. Here we are..up to speed. With a bag of beads from Walmart in the garage and a costume parade tomorrow at 8 o'clock.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Bloggy Carnival is Here

Fine, I'm late..but so excited the bloggy carnival is here!! Be sure to click the link on the right to check out all the great prizes being offered. So much great stuff and only one week to get them all in. Our contest is sooooo easy! All you have to do is be a crazy friend and you're in (see the crazy mom friends/followers to the left). Sign up to follow this blog and leave a comment in the comment section. A winner will be picked at random on November 1st from all the new followers. Here's what you win: with the holidays coming, there's always lots of parties to attend...yeah, cocktails! To look your best, we are giving away a dramatic eye kit from ELF (Eyes Lips Face). Everything you need is included, even an instruction sheet on how to make smokey eyes for those of us who are make-up application challenged. Smokey Eyes contains Drama Eye Shadow, Black Earth & Water Mascara, Eye Liner in Black, Smudge Brush and Eye Lash Curler. Good Luck!

Friday, October 24, 2008

They're Coming, They're Coming!

My family is coming to visit tomorrow and I'm so excited, yet completely exhausted! Why is it that the ones you love the most, who really could give a crap what your house looks like are the ones you want to make it the nicest for? I've been in crazed cleaning mode..finding old (revolting and stinky) sippy cups under the beds, finding the long, lost shoe (months after I threw out it's match), and screaming like a drill sargent at the kids to clean up the back yard. As much work as it is, it's always awesome for my house when people come to stay. Actually, it's sort of my built-in cleaning regimen. I've tried all the little short cut ways, but let's face it..I'm the worst house cleaner. None of my mom rubbed off on me in that department. I chalk it up to the fact that it's more important for me to spend time with my kids than have an immaculate house. I've had a clean house..and it sucks. Don't get me wrong, the clean part is wonderful..but I turn into mommy nuerotic (fine, I'm mommy nuerotic half the time anyway but this is different). I walk 2 feet behind them with the words "Are you done with that..put it away then" spewing out of my mouth all day. After they have a snack I'm a crazy person with the spray cleaner getting the crumbs off the counter. I don't want to live like that! It's time we went on strike and lived among crumbs..that's how I feel. Besides, I subscribe to the whole insane germophobic theory of today. The kids' immune systems today are all jacked up from sanitation. Mine are never sick and it's because they live among the germs. Don't get me wrong, it's not like we live in a pit crawling with feces and empty pizza boxes..I clean. I just don't have a fancy little organizer for 'my supplies' with a schedule of toilet boils on Tuesdays or something equally as annoying. Besides, you all know once you pass kid #2, the five second rule turns into the five minute rule so there you go.
Anyway, back to my family coming. I'm beside myself with excitement and scheduling visitors each month so I can get a good thorough cleaning in...who wants to visit me in November?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Having a Bad Day? Give Your Kids Dessert!

I know it sounds crazy, and this is not exactly a case of bribery..although admit it; as parents we've all used bribery now and again (or again and again.) During those days when the last thing you'd like to do is something nice for anybody..acutally you'd more like to hurl insults at any random passerby, give your kids dessert. Tonight, not that it was a bad day, they got Moosetracks chocolate ice cream with an Oreo shoved in the middle. Yes, dessert is huge in our house. Anyway, while they ate I went in the next room and a few minutes later I hear them rehearsing songs for me. It took a good 15 minutes to get it right who was going to go first, the lines, the tunes, all of it. I then walked in the room to chocolate faces and rounds of "I love Mom" in song. It was the best! I put it in my mental rolodex for that 'terrible day' and wanted to share it with you. Definitely the way to go after a crappy day. How can you still be mad with smiles, chocolate and little voices screaming your praises? If you still are, as a backup put them in bed at 7 o' clock and make your own bowl of Moosetracks ice cream with an Oreo shoved in the middle..if that doesn't work, nothing will.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Fall is Here!

My favorite season is fall...I love it! The promise of the holidays right around the corner (but not yet at the frantic panic of getting it all done), decorating the house, the leaves, the changing all gets me. I have to admit though, that while I love all the wonderful things Southern California has to offer, I'm still a Midwest girl at heart. There's not that many trees, so we don't really get the changing of the leaves. And although it's nice to be sitting here in shorts and a tank top, I miss needing a heavy coat and the cold, crispness in the air. But, cooler weather is coming..even for us. It'll only be a few more days until I get to cozy up in a sweater and light fires in the fireplace (it pays to get cold easily.) Either way you slice it, it's the best time of year...a new school year, pumpkins and the fun of choosing what to be for Halloween. Happy fall everyone!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Visits From "Your Little Friend"

I would love to know why the hell they call my period "my little friend"?? Frankly, I'd rather have dinner with my sworn enemies shoving bamboo shoots under my fingernails while blaring some sort of techno-freak music in my ears than deal with my period. I was literally in the convenience store an hour ago like a junkie, spending $30 on Coke, 5 pounds of chocolate, sugary candy, and a can of Pringles...yes, I spent fifteen minutes in the candy aisle collecting necessities. At least it was not a midnight run for tampons. Thankfully, I have been married long enough that if my husband's going to the store and I scream out for a box of Kotex Supers, he's coming home with them. Those first few years of embarassment and unwillingness to get my 'feminine products' are over. I've beaten him down. He probably makes the kids get it off the shelf and hide it in the cart under the Cheerios, but who's complaining...he brings them home! At least my boys are in training early on the subject of how to treat a woman once a month. Poor things..they are used to mommy's neurotic rantings several days a month. I think there should be a place we can go during our periods...a whole service industry geared toward women on their periods. Our own padded room. Chick movies, lots of kleenex, wine and chocolate. We check in for 3 days and come home refreshed. I love the idea! Somebody open one, please...I know my husband would think it's worth every cent!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Second Day of School

OK, ladies...we're finally to the second day of school. Yay!!! You know what I'm talking about. Yesterday was spent taking the first day of school pictures, waiting to watch them walk into their classrooms, getting there early to pick them up (yes, the only time that happens during the year), making the 'special snack' after they get home. Then, of course is the 20 page packet to fill out the first night with the tears that come from "not getting the prize" if they don't bring it back the next day..times however many kids you have! Now that the first day's over, you know you're as excited as I am for the second day. Fine, it's not like they're in a routine yet. But come that second's momma time. This is what the stay-at-home mom lives for. Even if it's only for one day, the fact that you get to come home, leave the dishes in the sink for an hour and grab a cup of coffee is like FREEDOM!! I got the coffee, a danish, put my feet up and called my best girlfriend. I unashamedly sat and did nothing but chat with her on the phone for one hour! When else do we ever get an entire hour with no interruptions, no screaming for milk or laundry to do, or fighting to break up? It was glorious. I spend an entire year looking forward to the second day of school. So go on girls, grab that cup..get on the phone, read a magazine, fulfill your stereotype of bon-bon eating, Oprah watching, stay-at-home momdom! At least for an hour, then you'd better get out something for dinner and throw in a load of wash :-)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Time Flies

As I said in my first post here, this blog is more of a personal journal than business journey like the last one. Getting older and living in a tornado of insanity has led my mental state to be leakier than a broken faucet. This is my way of documenting events and thoughts that are flying by faster than I can keep up with. The fact that my baby will be four soon and my oldest is constantly looking for the 'cool' clothes and wanting me not to hug him in front of his friends sends me into a tearful frenzy of 'oldness.' Fine, not a real word...but in the world of blogdom, we make our own. The fact that I look back at certain stories and can't remember which son it pertains to makes me feel like I'm 80. How do you forget those things? Yes, smoked way too much marijuana back in the day, but for heaven's sake this is rediculous. I want to lock up all those precious moments so I can see/hear/smell every detail later. I guess this is why I blog. Who has time for video cameras...I'd have to buy tapes or read a manual, I have 3 journals to write in..all blank, and hundreds of dollars of scrapbook stuff...stacked in boxes. Blogging works..for now. When my kids move out, I'll do the scrapbooks...and hopefully I won't have forgotten every detail by then.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

How Can Summer Be Over?

I have no idea where this summer went! Isn't that how we feel about every summer I guess? I know we did a lot, but it honestly has been such a blur that I couldn't even name all of the things we did if I tried. The true signal is the haircuts right before school starts. Thing 2 has the most beautiful golden hair that turns so light during the summer. The week before school haircut leaves him so dark-haired! I love that color,'s just a sign that summer's almost over. It's time to brave the insanity at Target for school supplies! Hope everybody's two steps ahead of us, we're so late this year!

Take care and know that we'll be in the salon in a couple weeks...I cheated and left it long on top to save the golden hair as long as I could!!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Welcome (Back) to My First Post!

Hi! My first post is more of an update than anything (although I suppose all blog posts are updates of some sort, right?) Anyway, for those of you who I've visited with before a quick recap of events. I sold my other blog and am not currently writing as a contributor anymore for the sites it used to follow.. I know, mysterious for the new people but I can't name names per the sale agreement :-) Although I've been MIA, I've been really busy! I started a new business. It has been completely time consuming, but exciting at the same time. I started a blog to journal the evolution of the business (and I know you've all been checking it), but haven't even had time to post to it yet I've been so busy...promise, I'll do it soon!

So, very different from my last blog, these 2 are personal and just a way to journal and vent. I'm so glad you found me again, but continue to visit the old one..I know they are going to do a fabulous job keeping it up.