Thursday, March 29, 2007

She shoots, She scores

Back to normal, huh? Pretty much. 11pm last night the a/c vent and a portion of our garage ceiling began leaking. Suuuuhhhwweeeetttt. Fortunately, the Circle of Life works it's way around, even into our crazy household: we just got a check in the mail from Jax's ear surgery over a year ago -- a refund for a payment I spent days declaring I had already paid, only to be told, "Too bad, so sad..." So I guess it was meant to be, or something karma-licious like that. Except now it reminds me that we still owe my folks $1200 for the extra expenses we incurred way back then. Here's hoping they understand!!

I've also been receiving requests from people for specific designs on chunkyrhino, which is great, it's just now I have to, you know, FOLLOW-THRU. I did just add the cutest baby skull w/binky, which I may end up altering to add crystals and stuff...take a look and let me know what ya think!!

Plus, Friday night we have tickets to see the Greatest Band in Recent History, along with the Granddaddy of Texas Country, which is so exciting except for one small catch: no sitter lined up for the kiddos. I would normally love to take Ryan, but I'm just gonna have to admit this now: I WILL BE PLASTERED, and knowing Shawn's record with Ragweed, I'm guessing he'll be 3 sheets to the wind as well. Probably not advisable in the Parenting 101 Handbook. So now I'm scrambling to find help with the kids...

Ryan's new bed is creating more headaches than I ever anticipated, as we haven't found a good *cheap* mattress to fit it yet, so she's still camped out underneath it on her air mattress.

She was so funny this morning -- I was trying to cut out a milk jug for her to use as an Easter basket at school -- many thanks to those creative teachers for demanding I attempt to cut molded plastic into an actual SHAPE, btw. Anyway, I must have looked perplexed as I shoved the knife in and out, because while watching me, she declared "All the other Mommies did it, I'm sure you'll do okay, Mom. You'll be fine." She also informed me that the fact that we were late getting it in wasn't my fault (though it was), that it was her fault for not reminding me. At least I can cross that off of my list of things to teach her.

Jax still won't sleep on his own, so we're back to laying out pillows, blankets and extra binkies on the floor near his door so that when the time comes for him to pass out from pure screaming exhaustion, he'll at least be comfy. I really am MOTY.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Back to LIFE

Life is slowly getting back to normal this week...I'm steadily putting the house back in order, the kids are coming out off their Mommy-withdrawals nicely, and I cannot stop gushing about how really awesome Shawn was this past weekend. I know you may be wondering if it's really me typing right now, but seriously, he's been awesome. Either he's remembered how much he loves me, or he's doing something naughty behind my back... I choose the former.

Ryan got her new bed all finished up last night, and now I've just got to set about the task of re-decorating her entire room. Steele gray tubing bed frames don't really scream "Shabby Chic" the way the rest of her room does. As if I need another reminder that she's growing up -- last night we were playing Barbies and she told me I had to play the "Hot" boy at school. HOT. Hot?? Nonononononononono.......

Along with Ryan's room, other areas in the house are in need of attention, especially since my trip to Honey and Pappy's left me with heirlooms. So there's another project to add to the list. (and one I'm very happy to undertake!)

chunkyrhino has really taken off, and I got the best response from the moms-to-be at the Mommy and Me Baby Shower this weekend. We've got our website reserved (thanks Jeff) and now I've got to slowly piece it together, or get someone else to anyway(thanks Jeff).

On top of all this? My 30th is Saturday, and I'm so excited! Can you believe??? As much as I've pissed and moaned about it this past year, I'm really pumped and can't wait to be OLD. (Especially since they're throwing me a party at the Lake and we're gonna see Ragweed on Friday -- anything can be fun if there's beer involved, am I right?)

Monday, March 26, 2007

Still can't find my camera...

...but here's my fave pic so far from NYC!!

(You have no idea how much it cracks Shawn up to see his M.I.L. sippin' on a 40)

Saturday, March 24, 2007

400 Dollars

That's how much I've spent at the Mommy and Me Sale so far this weekend. And we haven't even had the 50% discount day yet, either. oops.

Other than the minor coronary I'm suffering at having to explain to Shawn how I spent more at the sale, rather than saved more, I've actuallly been having a great time this weekend. The New Mom's Baby Shower and Mom's Night Out Event were both major successes, and the crowds just keep coming!! When people are trying to sneak in free advertising by canvasing the parking lot during your event and leaving flyers in the bathrooms, you know you've done something good.

If you 're anywhere near Round Rock tomorrow, you've got to make a stop at the Dell Diamond to check out the last day of our Spring 2007 sale -- select items will be 50% off, but they will go fast, so bust a move and get there when the doors open at 11. Don't wait too long. I'm serious. We close at 2, and they way my dogs are barkin', I'm likely to carry you out the doors myself if you're not done shopping by 2:01!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

D'ya miss me??

Hi. I'm Amy. I write this quirky little blog about my life and my family, my kids, my mental breakdowns, etc... Have we met??

Got back from NY on Monday at 4 am. Up with the kids at 8, working on Mommy and Me ever since. I'm sorry to be so short and vague, but time's a-waistin'.

NY was snowy (woohoo! Spring Break! Yeah!!) and all I got are a couple of knock-off bags and fallen arches,swollen feet, & lots of blisters. I went form over function. Big mistake. Big. HUGE.

I'd love to show you pics but I've misplaced el camera, so I'm gonna have to wait for Jet Blue to find it, which you know, should only take a year or so, being JetBlue and all.

We saw WICKED and cried (natch), gave food to homeless people (and cried), and saw the worst comic ever and would have cried, but were saved by this dude.

I missed the kids and only felt guilty every time I spoke with them, Ginger or Shawn -- apparently Jax is much worse than Shawn was, Ginger now understands why I drink, and Shawn, well, Shawn was Shawn, but without someone to make fun of.

Our trip to SAK's left me feeling like the ugliest 30 yr old to walk the planet ("See how this cream diminishes those horrible wrinkles all over your face???"), but I had the last laugh -- I let them make me over to their heart's content, all without telling them I did not have $125 to spend on any cream, I was saving it for my fake Louis (which, by the way, all the Asians in Chinatown no longer carry). Suckers.

We had an amazing view of the Empire State Building out our hotel room, which came equipped with HBO and life-like 5th ward residents mulling about the sidewalk. Not scary at all.

I managed to get us lost in Chinatown, Little Italy, and Times Square, but by the end was able to properly direct some tourists to the R line going downtown, which is more than I can say for the subway attendant.

We didn't make it the St. Patty's Day parade (did I mention it was 28 degrees?), but we did drink and we wore green, so we felt okay about it. Especially since Lea Ann and I managed to flash the city of New York from our hotel room -- it was like St Patrick's and Mardi Gras all in one!

We had the best cabbies ever, giving us advice on where to get the best deals, what the NY "rules" were, and all about what a fraud Guiliani is -- our kind of men!!

Then came Sunday, and while we didn't do Breakfast at Tiffany's, we did take a carriage ride through Central Park, had a hot dog from a street vendor, and ate Godiva inside Trump Tower.

Then it was time to leave (did I mention we flew JetBlue?). Our flight was scheduled for 9pm, got delayed to 9:40, then 10:10, and we finally boarded at 11pm, and taxied until midnight. Fun was had by all.

I love my mom and my sisters, I'm so glad they helped me go on this trip, and I certainly couldn't have done it without help from Shawn and Ginger with the kids. Lots more happened, and I'll be sending quips your way soon, but I've got inventory to enter for the sale, so I must say goodbye for now. Ciao!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Happy Birthday Ryan!!

I can't figure out how to embed the video, so you'll just have to click here. Sorry it's so dark -- the objective was to get the candles, but I was too late...The white blob jumping up and down? Yep, that's Jax.

And now I'm off to the Big Apple so you may not hear from me for a few days...don't wait up!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

How'd I Miss That One??

So here I am, cleaning out my desk, trying to finish up all my Mommy and Me stuff before New York, when I come across a note I had written myself about a conversation Ryan and I had. I don't know when it took place, but it doesn't really matter -- the message is universal:

Me: (looking at a drawing she made for me following a session in Time Out) "Oh, I see. It says you love me and you wish you hadn't said you hate me, right?"

Ryan: "Well, no. It says, 'Goodbye Forever'."


Sunday, March 11, 2007

Who Says You Can't Go Home?

Just got back from a road trip with Menana this afternoon. I've been desperately needing to visit Honey and Pappy, and I am fortunate enough to have a husband and MIL who were more than willing to watch the kids so that I could go. (Of course, now Jax wants nothing to do with me and Ryan's spending her 2nd night straight at Ginga's, but who's complaining?)

We stopped overnight Friday in Tomball and stayed with my very own Mrs. P, who welcomed us with open arms and lots of vomit. (She teaches 2nd grade. There was a bug going around. You understand.) Luckily, the ralph-fest didn't start until much much later in the evening, so we were able to get food, drinks, and chatter in long before she took her leave.

We went to out usual chow spot, El Corral, which I insist we eat at every time we pass through town with the hopes of running into my old frind Ed whose family runs the place. You know how sometimes there are just people you connect with? He's one of mine. Anyway, I finally got to see him and had such a good time talking about his family, gabbing about mine, and making plans to meet again. Chaika met up with us a little later on, which Shah was supposed to do as well, but skanked out on me at the last minute. Whatever, I got to drink so all was forgiven.

We did the girl thing and talked and talked and talked...and talked until after 1 am. I love that part of being a chick. I don't even remember what we talked about but I was happy and stress-free for a consecutive number of hours, and for me that's pretty freakin' fantastic.

We took off the next morning for Port Neches, and when we finally arrived, the flood gates opened. It's so hard for my mom to go home and not have her mother waiting for her at the door, and it's so sad to see Pappy all by himself, much less to later find that he no lnoger sleeps in their bed, and now wants us to try and take any of her things we may want before he begins selling it off. She's still with us, but he's accepted that she's not coming home again....I can't even imagine. They've been with each other since they were kids.

The tears came in waves, but in between there was a lot of laughter. My favorite part was when Pappy saw that his next door neighbor had let their dog shit on his lawn. Again.

"No problem," he said. "This happens all the time. I just throw it back onto his yard." At which point he marches into his garage to get his "shit-throwing" stick. He's so into it, too -- making noises, shooting little dog-poo torpedos as far as they will fly. And they did fly. One flew it's happy little ass all the way onto the neighbor's roof.

"Oh shit, Pappy! You just threw the poo on their roof!"

"What was that?"

"The poop. It landed on their roof."

(chuckle) "Well whattya know? Wonder how that dog got all the way up there..."

I LOVE this man.

Seeing Honey was hard, and I knew it would be, but there's just not really anything to prepare you for the tidal wave of emotion that washes over you as you first catch sight of the woman who used to sing to you and read to you and cook for you, now laying paralyzed in her bed. That's hard, man. That's hard.

She's still got some of her fire, though. She's got no qualms about snapping at us that we're being too loud, or telling Pappy to get a move on with her food, or informing you that she loves it when her sister visits, but that"she talks too much." She's got that wit and that's what I remember, that's what I take with me. She's still in there, underneath the weakened legs and limp figure, she's still givin' us hell.

There's a woman across the hall from Honey who I can't stop thinking about. Her name is Mrs. Theriot and she just had her leg amputated after the doctors found gout in her big toe. She's in so much pain and shock -- asking us "Why didn't He just take me?" and showing us her stump, crying, "This is all they left me. This is it." I'm tellin' ya -- if you have any ounce of faith or spirituality in your body, please send up a prayer for Mrs. Theriot -- she's gonna need 'em.

So anyway, we spent the rest of the time catching up and going through stuff in the attic and in drawers and's just so weird. I know I'm bringing you guys down, but I can't get it out of my head...

But now we're home, the kids are well, Shawn's sleeping on the couch, and I've got a kitchen full of dishes to tackle. Ohh! I almost forgot -- Welcome to the World, Beckett Moore! My girl Lyndsey had her first baby and I'm so happy that now she'll be able to begin suffering with the rest of us...:)

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Quit Yer Bitchin'

Lea Ann says I've been sucking at this blog business lately. Thank you, I KNOW. I haven't seen Shawn in 2 days, I had Ry's teacher's bday to coordinate, a house to keep moderately non-toxic, 1001 things to do for Mommy and Me, and I've become the hunch-back of Mommy-ville with all the computer time I'm logging this week. Whew. Complaining can be soo exhausting, right?

Anyway, here's what's up: We had a Mommy and Me event at our local Chick Fil A Tuesday night. The cow was there. Fun was had.

On Wednesday I had the top layers of my two index fingers removed via our dvd player. Don't even think about asking me the how's or why's. All I feel like saying is The Little Mermaid is free and we've since been watching CARS non-stop. And now I'm more certain than ever that this family is electronically cursed.

Today was pretty okay until it was time to deliver Ms. Laura's gift. How cute is that anyway? The kids gave us words describing her, we made a design and put it on a tote bag and filled it with gifts from the kids. ANYWAY, while waiting for the class to return from their Texas Day activities, Jaxson decided to go balls-to-the-wall Destructor on me, attacking other children, breaking into nearby classrooms in order to ransack any and all toys not secured to the wall or floor, then led me and the 9 other mothers waiting in the hallways on a wild goose chase, wherein I broke my flip-flop and thus ended up workin' it hillbilly style in my bare feet. (No worries, I'm from Tomball -- I'm quite used to the hillbilly look) Once I did finally manage to locate and secure the rebel package, he managed to finally successfully fling himself out of my arms and onto the floor. Thank God he landed on his head -- that thing must be made of steel and covered in bubble wrap. Also? He's advanced from slapping my face when angry to pinching me on my cheeks, arms, back, etc.. Little tiny pincer-like pinching. So that's neat.

Anyway, I'm tired. My back hurts, and my brain stopped functioning 10 minutes ago.

P.S. Here's a pic of my bare foot driving home from preschool. Apparenetly, no matter how swamped I am, I always have time to take meaningless pics of myself while driving. I am that cool.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

I Did It! I Did It!!

An homage to Jaxson, and his declaration of success everytime he does...anything. He's realy very cute about it, throwing his hands up in the air, jumping up and down. One day I'll figure out how to work this computer-thingy and I'll be able to post audio, until then, use your imagination.

In related new, I DID IT! Ladies, want your hubby to be a better helper at home? Want him to show some empathy for the hard work you do all day, regardless of the fact that you don't get paid shit? I have the answer: Threaten to get a job!! I used this tactic with Shawn the other night, and boy howdy, how the tables have turned! He even mopped up the floor after dinner last night! I got compliments on dinner, time on my own (without the kids!!), and not one complaint was muttered all day long.

I'm serious, girls. It's the new miracle pill -- tell your man you are giving him 3 months to prepare to step down in his current job, because you are going back to work, and watch the fun begin!!!

Monday, March 5, 2007

When the Shit comes MARCHing In

Last year it was January. This year it looks like our month of hell will be March. Fitting, since that's when EVERYTHING is happening.

I'm so sorry I haven't posted in so long, but like I said...March walked in and I bent over.

Friday was average, I guess. I had the kids signed up for Family Friday at the Y, thinking Shawn and I could get a few hours alone to just, umm, sit. Funny Mommy.

The drop-off went well, but then I didn't see Shawn until just before 6. One of my favorite bits about being married to a restaurant manager is the way they are never able to make plans with anyone other than the restaurant. She is my husband's mistress, and she and I are fixin' to throw down. Except for the whole "Sugar Mama" aspect of it -- I kinda like that he gets paid to be with her, so I guess I'll shut up now.

Two hours with no kids, so naturally we stayed home, drank beer and watched Def Comedy Jam -- not a complete waste after all.

We picked the kiddos up, stopped for ice cream, and had a semi-slumber party in our bed, watching Open Season, and delivering Jax to his bed when he just wouldn't sit still. All the while, Shawn's in his Blackberry, texting his managers who have all gathered at a bar and are requesting his presence. Too exhausted to do anything with me, but he can go out till 3 am with his WORK buddies who he sees, like, ALL THE TIME. Whatever, I'm an awesome wife, so I just smiled and didn't say a word. That's what the blog is for.

Saturday morning hit and the rush was on -- Ryan and her friend Chloe were having a joint birthday party at the mall, and I still hadn't put together the gift bags or wrapped either of the presents. I have no idea why now, but we had decided that 10-12 was a good time to have a party, so we needed to be out of the house by 9:30am. Did I mention that Shawn stayed out drinking until 3 am? Yeah, I don't know why I'm still under the mistaken impression that whenever he's home I'll have help. My life will be so much easier once I realize that he just increases my child:mom ratio to 3:1. Needless to say, we were late and I was stressed.

Oprah devotee that I am, I've really been changed by the whole "Secret" thing and Law of Attraction, intentions, etc, and so have been working really hard lately at sending out positive energy, trying to appreciate each moment for what it is and what it can teach me. Saturday morning showed me that my Yoga classes are even more valuable than I thought -- I was breathing like crazy trying to calm down and stay upbeat, when here comes Shawn with, "Why are you breathing like that? What's wrong with you? You are so weird." Like I said, 3:1.

The party actually was pretty great, and I'm so glad Chloe's mom suggested we do a combo thing, because I'm not sure I could have handled a party on my own this month. The kids had a blast, Shawn watched Jax (which was huge, seeing as how I was ready to let a stranger take him home -- he'd already jumped into the bubble bath that morning after having been dressed), I was finally able to have some "adult" time, chatting with the other moms, when I feel a tap on my shoulder.

"Amy Roberts!" There, smiling at me was my childhood arch nemesis -- the girl who lived across the street and tormented, nay, TORTURED me and my sisters when we were kids. Together with her brothers, they once stole my bike, tried to shove me down the storm drain, bombed our mailbox, and so much more... I'll never forget my mom suggesting I "kill her with kindness", leading to a month of me complimenting her at the bus stop every single morning like the little doormat I was.

"Hi!" I cheerily replied, and we began talking about her baby, my kids, her family, when lo and behold, I looked around and there they all were. All of them. Big Bad Scary neighbors and little 'ole Amy. Have I ever mentioned what a complete wimp I am? My heart was going 100mph, I started stumbling over my words, and all I could end up doing was complimenting every single one of them: "Great baby, nice clothes, cute wife, whatever -- just please don't hurt me!"

It was a sad, sad sight, and one I really wish my sisters could have seen, but not my mom -- Inflatable Wonderland is not exactly the best setting for a Julia Sugarbaker monologue. I love her, but I'm not sure the preschool crowd would understand...

Noon came and we hit the road, a motley crew of four, carrying coolers and presents, balloons and cake. When we finally made it to the house, it was naptime for everyone, since the kids and I had been up since 5:30, just two hours after Daddy got home.

The nap was great, and the kids and I were excited about having cake in the house, so we ate some more while we waited for Daddy to get up. Then we ate some more. and some more. And finally around 5pm, we had to stop because the cake was gone and Daddy still wasn't up. He finally stumbled down the stairs a little while later, asking what all the shouting was for (Jax had been busy, dropping the cake on the floor, popping Ryan's balloons, crying...). Again, 3:1.

Thankfully, Ryan's friends took her back to play at the mall, I got Jax off to bed early and I hit the sheets. Shawn and I hadn't really spoken since I told him he could get his own dinner, so by the time Ryan got back, I was more than happy to let her bunk with me. Big mistake.

It's spring in Austin, and allergies have hit, at least, I think it's allergies. You never know anymore. Anyway, she was up coughing all night long, and when I say all night long, I mean ALL NIGHT LONG. You know it's bad when finally, the nurturing mama in you takes her leave, and all you can do is put the kid in her own room to cough her lungs up so you can get an hour or two of sleep. Meds aren't working, btw -- any advice?

Sunday morning hit, and Shawn didn't have to work until 1:30, so I thought Ryan might want to stay home with him until I got back from teaching Sunday School. "No, I have to leave here at 11:15. I have an early meeting," was his reply. Silly mommy. Just because the schedule reads "1:30-close", I should know better than to assume that means he actually has to get there at that time. After all, on days when he opens, it reads, "5am-3pm", but everyone knows he doesn't get out of there until at least 5 pm. Like I said, I've just got to stop thinking I'll have help when he's home, or that he'll even be home at all...

I manage to get the kids dressed and in the car, I made pancakes for everyone, and we were even early, until I realized I'd dropped my keys under the car seat. Fed up with Shawn, my anger was getting the better of me as I dug around in the sticky nether-regions of the car floor, desperately groping for keys. Then Jax kicked me in the face and it was all over. The positivity had positively run out.


This is about the point when Shawn comes out, wondering why we haven't left yet. "I can't find my keys," I grumble. He then proceeds to ask me where I was when I last saw them.

"You know what?" I say, "this is not the time to start helping. Not when I'm now running late, the kids are crying, and I'm digging through stuck-on food and gum. Not the time Shawn!" At which point I saw my keys, grabbed them, and slammed the car door.

Wanna know his reply? "God, Amy. What's wrong with you? Chill out. I'm going back to bed."

Luckily the church is a ways away, so I had time to calm down, center myself and get ready to teach a room full of 3 yr old's all about God and love.

Class actually went really well, despite the fact that as I'm on the way to church, I get a voicemail from my co-teacher, my friend Angie, that she's sick and won't be able to be there. I am so grateful for that class - I really left feeling much better and renewed, which was needed since I was facing the rest of the day alone with the kids.

Naps were definitely on schedule, as was taking them to the gym so they could play and I could work out, except that when we woke up, Ry wasn't feeling well, so that plan was nixed. Instead, she wanted to play "Ariel". Do you have any idea how much work it takes to play "Ariel" with Ryan? First we have to gather all 11 of her Ariel dolls (please, people, no more Ariel dolls), then she has to tell me what to say, then I have to say it, then she has to say her part, then she has to undress the doll, then we have to sing a song, wash, rinse, repeat. It's exhausting.

But finally bedtime arrived and all went well. Until this morning when I discover that Jax barfed in his bed last night, and I have no idea why. He never woke me up, he has no fever and he's playing like nothing ever happened. I'd have already forgotten all about the puke if Ryan wasn't yelling, "Don't touch anything of mine, you are gross!" and"Get away from me Jaxson, you STINK!" Looks like it's bathtime.

Thanks for letting me vent, I feel much better.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

The New Mikey

Ryan: This orange is nasty.

Me: Throw it away, then.

Ryan: Naw, I'll just give it to Jax.