Saturday, May 31, 2008

Random Video Saturday

A day late, I know, but here are some pics of what's been keeping me away...

THE APRON. I finally finished our end-of-year gift for Ryan's teacher yesterday at 2:25 pm. 10 minutes before our very last chance to give it to her. Normally I would chalk up this kinda of under-the-wire finish to procrastination, but in this case, the delay was, well, Jaxson. Let's just be honest.

The Chinese characters mean "teacher". God, I hope they do, anyway. It would be just like me to accidentally sew "prostitute" or something.

Also? I've been spending extra time with some of my newest babies:

We went to Wildseed Farms last weekend and I picked up 2 new Hibiscus, although one of the new ones isn't in this picture. I also got these:

My Spanish Lavender, tucked away in the little make-shift herb garden. I'll save more of those tantalizing pics for another day.

Anyway, here's the video! It's a fun one of Ry climbing at the Dillo Jr. Run. (I told you I'd post them eventually...) Enjoy!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

May Madness

Forget about the Sweet Sixteen and the Final Four, if you really want to show you're tough, you have to survive May Madness.

Very similar in origin to Holiday Havoc, May Madness comes stocked with end-of-school parties, gifts to be made/purchsed, camps and classes to plan and register for, vacations to schedule, oh, andc then there's the little matter of fending off/relenting to the children's hourly request to go to the pool. Throw in birthdays, Mother's Day, weddings and Memorial Day, and the one standing at the end of the month is the winner!

I'm gonna go ahead and just admit that although I gripe about the stress May incurs, I'm very thankful for the minimal level it causes now, considering the colossal ball of walking tears I'll become during the maximum level of stress waiting for me in May 2020.

Ryan had her awards assembly yesterday, which we were late for, along with 1/3 of the other parents. Jax was rowdy, Ryan was LAST (of the entire assembly) and we were so far in the back, we didn't really get any good pictures. (That'd be where that whole "late" thing comes in.)

Here is what I did get:

See how proudly she's displaying her "most inquiring learner" award? Little does she know that's teacher speak for "the one who won't stop asking questions". I think it's awesome -- QUESTION AUTHORITY RYAN!! (Except when it's me or dad. Then you may let it slide.)
Now I'm off to tend to my garden, small and meek though it is. I've got pics, but I'll save them for later....

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Hibiscus Hysterics

My beautiful, beautiful babies!!

So vibrant. So fresh. So totally massacred 10 minutes after these pics were taken by a lug-headed 3 yr old troll wielding a plastic toy saw.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Random Video Friday

Sorry, I'd stay and chat, but Jax just poured a bottle of parmesan cheese into his mouth and half of it ended up on the floor. Gotta go!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Fun Fleamarket Find

So, I'm not sure when this little jewel was actually made, although I'm guessing...80's? Did they even have battery-operated cars in the 70's? How about battery-operated cars complete with hydraulics, flashing lights and accompanying Mariachi music?

Whenever it was made, it was totally worth the $4 I paid at last weekend's Fredericksburg Trade Days. Jax hasn't stopped playing with it, and although the noise is a little distracting, can anyone really ever hear too much Mariachi music? I mean, really?

Monday, May 19, 2008

Angel Kisses

Ryan: "Mom! I'm getting really tired of everybody always asking me about the bumps on my neck! Everyday they ask, 'what are those things?what are those things?' And everyday I tell them 'They're my Angel Kisses, okay! They're ANGEL KISSES!!!' but they just keep asking and it's really making me mad!"

Mom: "Well, Baby, then just tell them this: 'These are my top-secret warts and they won't hurt me, but if you get too close or touch them, or make me really mad, then they will explode and kill you.' That should stop them."

Ryan: "Okay, mom, like nobody is going to believe that."

Mom: "Then just say that they're your skin tags, they're just bumps of skin, they don't hurt you and they won't hurt anyone else. Just tell them the truth."

Dad: "They're just like birthmarks, Ry."

Ryan: "Well you know what I'm going to say? I'm just going to tell them 'You know what? If you had a funny birthmark on you and I asked what it was and you said "Angel Kisses", then I wouldn't ask anymore. And I wouldn't laugh at you or make fun of you, I would just leave you alone. Can you do the same for me??' That's what I'm gonna say."

Mom: "That's wonderful Ry. Just remind them that everyone has birthmarks, and everyone's are different. You can even tell them about Mommy's birthmark on my butt if you want."

Ryan: "OOH! No, I'm not gonna tell them about that! ....What birthmark on your butt? Let me see....OOOOOOHHHH! The Angels kissed your butt!!! "

Friday, May 16, 2008

The one where Mommy goes Mad

Mad is the new black, or hadn't you heard?

I'm not sure if it's the pre-breakfast temper tantrums Jax has been throwing this week, the fact that the Family Selection committee I chair for Habitat has dwindled down to three, leaving us to scramble to meet the newly moved-up deadline of having all home visits done by...TODAY, the fact that Ryan went to school today with my cellphone in her pocket, or that it's May, which means DADDY WORKS ALL THE TIME. Whatever it is, it got up bright and early to pee all over my cheerios and now I feel the wave of insanity inching its way toward the surface.

Breathe with me, people. I'm afraid if I yell anymore my head may explode, which I'm thinking would be even harder to clean off the carpet than those eggs. Remember them??

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Catholic Guilt Runs Deep, My Sistah

So I just received an email from Ninny in response to another email I'd sent about helping Chinese earthquake victims. She wanted to know why I wasn't trying to help her friends by forwarding their charity golf tournament email she'd sent to me. Although I gently explained that I am a perfect sister, and therefore had already forwarded the email, I still feel her Inner Catholic Eye (or as I like to call it: I.C.E.).

Yes, her I.C.E. is boring a hole through my soul using lasers of guilt pebbled with tiny fragments of shame, and so that it is why I would like to tell you all about a little Charity Golf Tournment being held September 29, 2008. Well, that's not the only reason, but it is a pretty good motivator.

I'm just going to go ahead and post the email below:

Hello everyone,

If you are receiving this email, then you either know Phillip and Sara Kreymer, or you know someone who knows them. As you may have heard, Phillip was diagnosed with a brain tumor just over a year ago. He has had two surgeries and has been undergoing chemotherapy and radiation treatments this past year. In an effort to help support the Kreymers during this difficult time, we will be having a golf tournament benefiting Phillip on September 29, 2008 . This event is to raise money for the Kreymers as Phillip continues to undergo his treatments. Please take a moment to read the attached bio to learn more about Phillip’s experience.

We are asking each of you to please help us in this effort by sending this information to everyone you can to help us find sponsors, players, items for raffles and prizes, etc. This event can be a great success if you will help us spread the word to your friends, family, co-workers, and any business owners you may know.

For those of you who are not interested in playing, donating items for raffles and prizes would be great. For those of you who would like to play or volunteer at the event, the registration forms are attached for you to fill out. All of the forms for volunteers, donations, sponsorships, and players are attached – be sure to scroll down to see all of the forms. Registering as soon as possible is greatly appreciated!

For further information regarding sponsorship, golf registration and raffle donations, please contact Stayci Runnels at Lantana Golf Club, 940-728-4653 or visit

You can also view an article written by The News Connection by clicking this link:

We appreciate your support!

I'm not sure if any of you live near Lantana or know someone who does, but I, for one, am planning on making a ROAD TRI-UHP!! (Tanya - that means Shawn & I will be staying with you. And probably Jeff & Lalo, too. But don't tell them yet. I want to ambush them. I really think they'll be surprised!)

Really, though. Take a look at the website. Now. NOW. (Now you're just thinking I can see you from the computer, right? Well I can. Now go!)

Just another 5 minutes

Now if I'd only recorded the 15 minutes we all spent in the hall closet last night while waiting out the "tornado". Let me put it this way: Shawn, dark closet, flashlight, ghost story. You've never seen 2 kids so enthralled, or so bummed to come out of a closet.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Knitting for Peace

Well, I'd planned on showing a random 5 min video clip from yesterday that made me laugh, but it's still"processing", which it has been doing for over 8 hours now. For 5 min of footage. That's correct. It's been "processing" "99%" of 5 minutes of video for over 8 hours. It's been a great excuse to practice my breathing. And my sighing, grunting, and growling.

So rather than postpone the next post until next week (by when I'm sure it would be done "processing", right?), I thought I'd just pop in and tell you about the book I bought last week and subsequently fell in LOVE with. BFF love. 4-EVA.

Truly, I've already started a list of who's getting which projects for Christmas. Lemme just say, I know a couple of gals who are really going to enjoy their Peace Fleece Classic Wool Socks! Am I right Lea? Nin?

Monday, May 12, 2008

The Lemonade Stand

Once upon a time, there was a Fair Queen who threw a festive "trunk show" party, bubbling for weeks with excitement over the beautiful products she was creating and the certain success of the upcoming event.

The day of the party finally arrived and our Queen, having steamed the carpet by hand, moved furniture, redecorated with displays of her gorgeous gift baskets and custom holiday cards, purchased mini quiches, mini cheesecakes and bottles of champagne, sat anxiously in her home, alone, waiting eagerly for the company that never came.

Ironically, years before the Queen's own mother had experienced a similar fate as a child, when no one attended the birthday party she and her parents had worked so hard on. (Don't feel too bad for the Queen and her mother -- they both ended up with wonderful lives, and I've hjeard tell that the Fair Queen even managed to turn her frown upside down by consuming all the mini-quiches and mini cheesecakes and bottles of champagne all by herself, though again, that's just a rumor.)

You can see why, with all the history in her family, the King was a little worried no one would show up to his Princess's Lemonade Stand that she'd been planning for days.

Little did he know, the curse of the Lonely Party had been broken when the beautiful Princess was born, (owing mainly to her incessant reminders and bugging of friends and family, but that is neither here nor there).

And so it was that Ryan's Annual Peace, Love & Lemonade Event was born, a huge success in its own right, with sold-out cookies, candy, popcorn and lemonade, a FREE sprinkler to play in, and $25 in proceeds donated to Unicef. Friends, family and teachers came from high and lo, along with a couple of Lawn Men who came back for seconds, thirds and fourths (although they did refuse the sprinkler, even after the kids mentioned it was FREE. Silly Lawn Men).

The Prince and Princess, obviously deep in a marketing strategy meeting


Ryan's secret wepon: The neighborhood GodFather. Would YOU say "no" to this face???

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Jax Says...

"Daddy loves me."

Me: "And who else?"


Me: "And who else?"

"Menana and Big Daddy."

Me: "Uh-huh. Who else?"

"...Jeff Gordon..."

I can hear Shawn banging his head against the wall even as I type this...

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

That Sounds About Right

Had you been a fly on my wall just 5 minutes ago, here's what you would have overheard:

Me (talking to my sis on the phone): "Nin, I gotta go. Jax is beating the guitar with a golf club."

Monday, May 5, 2008

Our weekend kicks your weekend's ASS!

Took what can only be described as a LONG road trip with Big Daddy, Menana and the kids to visit Honey and Pappy this weekend.

Considering the behavior issues Jax has been throwing at us lately, you'd think we'd know better, but you'd be wrong. We are incomprehensibly stupid and no amount of banging pur heads on any hard surface will change that. Believe me, we've tried.

Our first mistake was leaving around 4 pm on a Friday afternoon. For a 5 hour trip. Through Houston. Did I mention Jax was with us?

While we couldn't help the time we left, we did try to be prepared. We brought along our little dvd player (which, SONY, is NOT skip-proof), plenty of movies, snacks galore, toys, books, and I, of course, had my beer. Open Container Policy, be damned!!!!

15 minutes down the road, though, none of that mattered, because Scooby Doo kept skipping, Ryan kept whining that Scooby kept skipping, Jax kept dropping his cars and asking me to retrieve them, and I, consequently, kept spilling my beer.

Oh, and did I mention the pinched nerve in my lower back that has been sending shooting pains down my leg since Thursday night? Those came with us, too -- hence, the beer.

We reached our midway mark around 7pm, stopped, had dinner, treated the kids to ice cream cones that had to be finished in 5 minutes (before entering the car), and kept heading east. Houston came too quickly, as it seems to do every time we venture to our old stomping grounds, and I think it was right around Pasadena that we were forced to merge to one lane on I10 in order to give the Houston CSU team enough room to gather evidence from the Freeway Shootout that must have happened just hours before. Try explaining that one to the world's most inquisitive children.

Finally, we reached our destination around 10:45, after managing to get the kids to sleep a mere 30 minutes before. No big deal. Surely they were as tired as we, no? Surely they would gratefully collapse into bed and drift off to dreams in no time. Surely I've been reading too many fairytales.

It wasn't until 12:30 that Jax finally went down, having exhausted himself for half an hour crying over the binky we spent the previous half hour searching for to no avail, until, at the end of my already very short rope, I did one more crawl-around, begging Saint Anthony for his God-Blessed help JUST THIS ONE LAST TIME, PLEASE, and discovered it gingerly lying just under the bed's dust-ruffle.

Normally, this type of fiasco would really have pissed Big Daddy off, but seeing as how he and Menana had opted to shack up at the Holiday Inn, rather than roughing it with us at Pappy's, he didn't have to endure even one second of the RAGE THAT WOULD NOT STOP.

He did, however, get to suffer the effects of it the next morning when, after waking again at 3 am for another screaming bout, Jax was up and ready to go at 6:30 am. Mommy, however, was not, and so graciously ALLOWED Menana, Big Daddy and Pappy to take the kids with them to breakfast and a shopping jaunt at Target. Suckers.

They returned around 11 am, with a story that must have seemed one-of-a-kind to them but sadly, to me, sounded like just another day.

Apparently, Jax managed to crash a mannequin, seperating her body from her arms, legs, and hands, as well as severing her right index finger. Next, when kindly approached by a patrolling officer, proceeded to "blllttthhhh" with his tongue at the nice man, and then body-slam Menana to the ground.

And was rewarded with a new set of Thomas toys. Wonders never cease.

Apprently, raising hell takes a bit out of you, because as soon as we set him down in bed for a nap, he was out for the next 3 hours.

According to Big Daddy, Menana and I used that down time to our advantage, being the, what was the word he used?Ahh yes, OPPORTUNISTS that were, and left to visit Honey for lunch and do some light shopping at Target (apparently, Port Neches is the Target shopping mecca of SE Texas). Our high-rolling time didn't last long though, for Big Daddy was quickly on the phone demanding we get back asap. Was Jax awake? No, but we were having fun while he was stuck in the same house alone with his father-in-law and two young kids. This is not the way he rolls.

We continued our assault on our Cajun counterparts at a family crawfish boil, yelling at Jax to stop putting his fingers near the resident Pit Bull's mouth, and listening to Pappy do his thing on the fiddle. Hey diddle diddle.

Next up was dinner time with Honey, while Ry made friends with the smoking population of Gulf Heath Nursing Home out on the front porch. Then it was on to the hotel for a dip in the pool, which Ryan couldn't get enough of (once I'd made the second trip back to the house to retrieve her forgotten bathingsuit), much the opposite from her brother who would not allow himself to be brought even an inch off the steps without complete air-lift support from Big Daddy. For such a tough little horse's ass, he sure is a big ol' pussycat. We topped the evening with McDonalds, consumed around a kitchen table that just doesn't seem alive without Honey's presence, bid our goodnight's to Mom and Dad, and headed to bed.

And then I realized that the binky was in the car. At the hotel. Side note: I can now drive from Pappy's house to the Holidy Inn in my sleep.

Thanks to the long day and swimming episode, the night was sleep-filled and uneventful, as was the majority of the ride home. Actually, the ease of the ride home was largely due to the influence of this book, which I'd just checked out from the library on the recommendation of a child psychologist friend. (Every mom should have a Child Psychologist for a friend.)

And that, my friends, is why our weekend kicks your weekend's weenie ass. Challenge me. I dare you.