Monday, June 30, 2008

straight trippin'

This is where I wish we were going.

This is my reality. Ok, maybe not really, but pretty darn close. It is hot, cramped, we have no rental car... the list can go on and on. But I will spare you all of my wallowing in self pity. That which is Hell has begun and we have officially started our family vacation out West. What better way to start out a vacation then to get stuck in summer construction in Chicago. Luckily we knew of the excessive construction from our jaunt downtown a few weeks ago. The super friendly shuttle driver was nice enough to drop us off at the arrivals instead of the departures and said we could take the escalator up the two flights of stairs to get to the departures. Lord forbid he actually do his job and drop us off at the right destination!! Did he not see us carting two kids and a butt load of luggage? Nope, I think not.

And now we are waiting for our plane. Waiting with an under napped three year old and an eight year old with no patience for waiting. Grady has decided that today he is Ben Ten and keeps slapping his pretend watch/ omnitrex to transform in to a different alien. To add to the excitement he keeps insisting on yelling and jumping from the seat scaring the gentleman across from him trying to work on his laptop. Oh yes, good times, good times. I have begun lifting up prayers and pleads that the flight be quick and painless. Is that possible?

With all that being said, I am not sure how much I will be posting this week. I may need the mental break but I may also be balled up in a corner, rocking myself to sleep with a bottle of wine. My goal is to at least post pictures from our adventures with little tidbits of info - we'll see what you end up with. Bon voyage!!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

end of an era

Today marks the end of the baby era in this lassie's abode. In the last months we have conquered potty training and embraced our big boy skivies with open arms. Plus my wallet is enjoying the extra padding from not having to buy them anymore - can I get an Amen? Yeah, I thought I could. Our next step was the big boy bed. Grady has been sleeping on a mattress on the floor for about a month now. It was time to make it official. So today, after a 7 hour fishing excursion (GRRRR), hubby took the crib down and put the bottom part of the bunk bed together. The crib was officially moved it to the basement. Sigh.... Grady is now there napping peacefully. (in his bed not in the basement!!)

While I am glad to be done, part of me is still sad. There will be no more babies, no more cribs, no more diapers - wait a minute, that is a good point! I am happy with our boys and shudder at the thought of being pregnant again. Wooo, mental flashback. Now I have the cold sweats! I am happy to be at this stage of my life, most of the time. I do know that my desire to have another biological child has passed. Now adoption... that is always an option!! But things in our life need to settle a little more before we possibly voyage down that road. Grady is quite the handful and Drake has just entered the world of sports and games. Our life is busy enough and I think I have enough to try and handle.

So for now I will enjoy my lighter loads when I leave the house, trade in my diaper bag for a cute little purse and offer to hold any little baby that passes in front of my open arms. Because really, is there anything that smells better?

Saturday, June 28, 2008

photo hunt 116 - bright

Be sure to go HERE to see the other hunter's finds!

Friday, June 27, 2008

dilemmas, dilemmas

Oh internet, I need your help. You all know the issues with Grady and his Darth Vader wear. If not you can read here and oh, don't forget to look here too. And before you say, "Yes Kat, we all know his issues, suck it up already! Geez, we are soo tired of hearing about it already!", hear me out please! I know, I know.... sorry! But here is the low down: We leave for Nevada in three days to visit the/my parental unit. That's right folks, Nevada - where it is hot as Hades in July. Now, Grady loves him some Star Wars that is fo' sho'. With that being said - AGAIN - do I pack the shirt? Here are some of my selfish reasons to not pack the shirt:

1. I don't want to see him wearing that shirt in every vacation picture.
2. It's black with long sleeves.
3. It's hawt in Nevada, plus the whole high altitude issues we may encounter.
4. I don't want to see him wearing that shirt in every vacation picture.

I should also add that it is just not the shirt - the ensemble also includes his Vader mask and cape. I was hoping, when I recently bought the cape at Great America, that he would fall in love with it and be content to just wear the cape out and about. Um..... yeah, no such luck. I don't mind the cape and quite honestly, don't mind the shirt, but I am a bit worried that he will shrivel up and die out West if he wears that Death Star trap. On a good note, I did get him to wear that rockin' "Mom Rules" shirt, even if it was for 30 minutes. Maybe bribery will have to be in full swing when we head out west - but what to bribe him with...? I know I won't leave the house without Vader and if I try it will be ugly friends, UGLY!

So there you have it - my dilemma in a nutshell or should I say nutcase? Weigh in, post your thoughts, feelings and/or otherwise about this insanity called Grady. I'm ready... I hope!

PS: A little shout out to Barefoot Foodie and Cheaper Than Therapy for helping me tackle the three column html. You girls rock!!!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

because i am always late to the party

These past few weeks have sucked. Instead of reveling in all that is good with summer vacation, I have been galavanting across the countryside to various appointments, doctors visits and what not. Drake has skateboarding camp, Grady is playing soccer, hubby's sailboat racing season has begun, we're all out of milk and I need to be at my soccer game in ten minutes - across town!! Sigh... is this really what I signed up for when I let hubby shot one through the goal posts? I think the effects of the alcohol prevented me from fully understanding the consequences of my actions during those few minutes of time. Minutes!? Did I say minutes? Oh, I definitely meant hours honey... hours!

The worst is trying to get Grady out of the house. Well, I guess I should clarify - trying to get him out of the house not dressed as Darth Vader. I am all for self expression and whatnot but seriously - this shirt can walk on its own. He is now in the stage of refusing to let me wash it. I used to be able to convince him that Vader needed a tubby and he would fall for it - sucker. Now... yeah, not so much. Vader dislikes all things clean. He also has long sleeves and is all black. I swear my kid is going to melt away to nothings wearing that hot box all summer. Or is it a precursor to the Goth years to come? For the most part I shrugged my shoulders and let him wear that gawd forsaken thing but somedays... somedays I am so tired of it. I hate looking at it. I hate that every picture this summer has him wearing it. For the record, I did actually buy him summer clothes. I am also getting tired of the 'looks' from the neighborhood hens that say, "Oh there he is in that shirt again" with a weak smile. I sooo want to smack them.

So there it is, my suckit Monday tribute. Better late then never!

Brutally Honest Mondays” border=


Visual proof from nap this afternoon of Vader obsession. Sigh....

Sunday, June 22, 2008

sunday randomness

This is what I found under my television entertainment center (I sooo hate that word) this morning when fetching a car for Grady. I was shocked, well not really but somewhat, at the randomness of crap that has taken up home under our TV. There is the array of cat toys, a lone pig ear from a Tickle me Elmo, a six armed warrior, a rock, a strawberry and protective goggles from a Rescue Hero. Grady was quite pleased with the find, especially the silky soft play mouse - ick.

This is what I imagine was really happening under the television late at night while we were all asleep. hey, it could happen. What...?? You have never seen a six armed warrior fighting all that is evil atop a pig? Well then my friend, you do not know what you are missing!

On a completely different note, hubby decided to put the kennel up on Craig's List. He is titling it as a multi purpose dog kennel for your pup or dog house for your spouse. I am actually growing quite fond of how he looks in there. Maybe we will keep it after all!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Photo Hunt 115: Water

I thought about the typical summer/ sprinkler photo but opted for de-dirtifying the boys instead - the clean version. I know, I know, bad joke but I'm still working on my first cup of coffee.

Friday, June 20, 2008

summa summa summa time

Since it is officially summer and I am enjoying the sunshine - FINALLY!!- I thought I would partake in mama's nest's summer meme. While I could easily just cut and paste her list, which I nodded eagerly along with, I won't. I will put some thought into the next 10 minutes and scribe my own Summertime Top 10.

1. Freckles - Drake's and of course, mine. I adore the girlish quality they give me when they speckle my nose and cheeks.

2. Tan lines - I love how the boys' bums almost glow after a summer of swimming and playing outside.

3. Lazy nights lounging in lawn chairs, sipping beer and watching the boys chase fireflies.

4. Painted Toenails - I love putting funky colors on my piggies in the summer. I give my nails a break in the winter, so as soon as there is any semblance of warmth, I paint them. My fave color this summer is Yoga-ta Get This Blue by OPI.

5. Laying in the sun - I know, I know. It's bad. It causes cancer, wrinkles and what not, but there is something about the warm feeling that spreads over parts of skin that have not seen sunlight in 9 months that relaxes me to my inner core. AND because I have ADD I can only do it for 10 - 15 minutes at a time before getting bored.

6. Camping. Call me crazy but I like to rough it every now and then. My favorite camp site, around here, is the Indiana Dunes - beach, lake and a super clean camp site.

7. My road bike. I used to clip off 15 - 20 miles a day, pre-children. I finally splurged last year and got a new road bike since mine was old as dirt and as heavy as a truck! It is fire orange and yellow and it ROCKS!!!

8. The beach - sand and surf is all this lassie needs.

9. Beer soaked brats on the grill. I had never eaten these monstrosities till I met my husband. He has me addicted and some days I itch for them. Gross, I know.

10. My ALL time favorite - not working!! Working in the schools has it's bonuses (and it's not the paychecks!)

i am so moooooved

They're here!! They're here!!! I am giddy with excitement - my moo cards have arrived. Since I am not going to BlogHer this year .... boo hoo hoo ..... I decided to get Moo cards. Actually it was all Megan's idea over at Velveteen Mind. She offered to take cards for all the sad and pathetic that aren't going to BlogHer this year, so I decided to take her up on her offer. That and she threw in an amazing little discount from the makers of Moo Cards - so how could a girl refuse. This lassie loves her bargains! So if you are one of the few, the blessed the lucky and are going to BlogHer, hunt her down and snagged one of my ultra chic cards. Ok, maybe ultra chic is a bit extreme but what can I say, I am an extreme girl. By the way, I heard Megan was hosting a party there... definitely need to check that out if you are going!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

things-don't-suck-as-much-as-i-thought thursday

I live in the sucky Midwest. And the past few weeks we have been inundated with rain. Rain, rain and then some more rain just for good measure. Throw in a few tornadoes and flash floods and you have yourself one heck of a party. So between hiding in the basement and running out for rations for the great flood, I did partake me in some news coverage. I saw the pictures of all the locals heaving sand bags around their houses, trying to save Fluffy as she floated down the street - it was craziness in the making.
We live between two lakes, Drake's school is on one of them. We also live on a hill. THANK all that is holy, we live on a hill. For years I have complained about living on said hill because we get 30 - 40 mile an hour winds ALL. THE. TIME. If we leave the windows open, things fall off our walls and small children get swept away. Our crappy amazing neighbors always bring them back though.... hmmmm. But I digress... All of the minions that live at the bottom of our hill were completely submerged under water - like to the car windows under water - NOT pretty. Some made light of it by boating and canoeing up and down the streets while drinking large amounts of beer. Yeah, good thing the police couldn't get to us then! We were lucky and suffered no flooding, not even a trickle. My neighborhood has dried up for the most part but neighboring neighborhoods have not been so lucky.

As I went on a bike ride around the lake today I was shocked by the amount of water people still had in their lack of yards. Most still had submerged driveways, front yards and some still had water up their front doors. And I won't even get into the stench, the bugs and the stench. I couldn't even make it around the lake because the bridge was still under water. I know Christine feels their pain.

This picture sickens me. They lost everything in one big swoop of rain water. Maybe G force winds aren't that bad after all.

Be sure to check out other "things-don't-suck-as-much-as-i-thought thursday" entries at Fussy's Place. Can you believe her son washed a new Lexus with Soft Scrub - owww!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

thoughts of a three year old

Hubby took Grady outside after dinner last night to burn off some much needed energy while I finished up in the kitchen. I was enjoying the peace and quiet of the moment when I was quickly beckoned outside with a syrupy "Oh honey!!" I replied with an ever so sweet What the hell do you want now?! "Yeeesss"".
Hubby: Would you like to know what your son just said? Anything you want to tell me??
Me: Not that I can think of. Why?
H: Grady, tell Mommy who you just saw.
Grady: I just saw my other Daddy.
Me: Your who?
G: My other Daddy. He was running.

Hubby proceeded to tell me that as a man in our neighborhood ran by Grady exclaimed, "Daddy look!! There goes my other Daddy!" Thankfully the man had his iPod on and could not hear my son exclaiming his excitement about his questionable parentage.

Not even ten minutes later my cherub spouted this:

Grady: Mommy shut up!
Me: Excuse me?? We don't say those words.
G: I can only say them outside right?
M:No. You can never say that. It's not nice.
G: Oh..... Mommy, I smell garbage. snort snort.

Ah yes. He is such a little angel in disguise. It terrifies me to think of what he was saying when he went to pre-school. Guess it is better not to know!!

Monday, June 16, 2008

monday mayhem

Well, since I have not broached the subject of our dog Barley since my fence-sitting episode, I guess no time is better then the present. We did ultimately decide to put him down. Two bites within two months is a lot and we just couldn’t take the risk of something more serious happening to one of the boys, or worse, someone else. I still don’t have the words to adequately describe my emotions or all that was associated with that decision and that day. It is taking a long time to process and most days I am choosing to not process at all, it just hurts too much. Yes I know, avoiding is not going to make it go away, but at this moment it is making it easier to go on with my day-to-day life. I am also dealing with the aftermath of the decision with the boys. Drake is obviously taking it harder then Grady and there have been a lot of tears shed on an almost daily basis. So what better way to cheer up a sad lad then by offering him another pet to take his mind off his loss?

I will now introduce you to Buddy (Grady’s) and Lightening (Drake’s). We had to go to the dentist this morning to get three of Drake’s cavities filled. Our dentist has an incredible aquarium filled with fish, crabs, shrimp, starfish and hermit crabs. Grady and Drake were fascinated with the hermit crabs so I offered to get them one. Well one turned to two because neither could agree on one and lord forbid they actually share something between them in their lifetime. I mean, hello!? …they can’t even share a room!! So after much deliberation they each painfully picked out their new pets and $50 later we were the new owners of two hermit crabs.
Grady’s Buddy started out in the Superman shell but quickly moved to one of the extra shells I put in their habitat. I will also take this moment to point out that it was more expensive to buy a painted crab then an ordinary crab and that both boys HAD to have a painted crab, (of course they did). Thankfully Grady was not upset with the move and luckily he and Drake got to watch Buddy move from his Superman shell to the new and improved shiny shell. I missed it, because I was at the doctor for a possible hernia from my soccer game yesterday – story to come later, but heard it was quite the sight to see! The new pets have been occupying a lot of their time and attention – so far – and can’t get too hurt by being manhandled by two over anxious boys. I also just read that these crabs can live up to 20 years…yikes! I was looking for a quick fix, not something I was going to have to take care of when I am old and gray. Maybe I should have just settled for a goldfish…. Or two!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

father's day debacle

It just wouldn't be a Father's Day without a little manly dilemma. Can you guess who caused it?? Yes, it was the ever troublesome three year old. Grady, unbeknownst to us, managed to close the bathroom door and get it jammed. Somehow, when he closed it, the drawer closest to the door, slid open and made it impossible to open the door from the outside. Being as everyone was outside of the door - we had a problem.
Even the hinges were on he inside of the door, so hubby was at a loss. I remembered the skewers we use to make smores and thought they may fit into the small space we had to work with. Sure enough they did and the fine act of little movements, trying to close the drawer from the outside, began. After twenty minutes and two bent skewers we got the door open again. Another reason why Dads are so important! Happy Father's Day hubby!!

I will also add on to the greatness of Father's Day with my great and oh so exciting news. I was added to Alltop's list of Mommy bloggers! Confirmation, as my button says, that I kick ass. Sorry as I gloat, just for a brief moment.... ok, there I am done. If you click the button on the left you will find me - way, way, WAY down on the bottom - just where I like to be!!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

photo hunt 114 - emotions

For this lassie, hunger is a serious emotion. Obviously I passed this 'emotion' to my son, who felt so hungry that he needed to gnaw on the nearest tree. Or perhaps he need a HUGE does of fiber.... with that one you can never be too sure. I pity can't wait to meet the person that captures his heart someday - poor soul. Did I mention there is a 'no return' policy on Grady? No...? Well now you know!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

tagged on a tuesday

The lovely Ann from Ann Again .... And Again had an interesting 'tag' for a post. The idea is to grab the closest book, turn to page 123, find the fifth sentence and then write the next three sentences. Lost yet? Yeah, me too. I had to reread it several times to process the whole thing. Since I am feeling more then brain dead and lacking any gumption to write anything creative and witty - because I am always so creative and witty you know, unless of course you are asking my three year old who thinks I am only funny once a week. With all that being said I am taking her up on the challenge!

The nearest book to me is "The Dangerous Book for Boys" by Hal Iggulden. This chapter of the book is about famous battles, in particular the battle at Somme. The excerpt is from a poem by Laurence Binyon commemorating the slaughter of 19,000 British soldiers and the 60,000 casualties left behind. Kind of heavy for a boys book don't you think? Yikes!!

They went with songs to the battle, they were young. Straight of limb, true of eye steady and aglow. They were staunched to the end against odds uncounted: they fell with their faces to their foe.

If you have an adolescent boy I do recommend the book. It has a lot of interesting facts and things for boys to make like knots and trip wires (always important with a younger brother under foot). Plus it gives you little garnets of truth to take into the world, because really, what boy doesn't need that?!

Sunday, June 08, 2008

are those space pants your wearing?

As seen on TV!! Increase your storage space! Yeah, I know, I can't believe I bought them either. They were on an end cap in the evil store known as Target. BFF swears by them and if BFF swears by them, they have to be good. So I succumbed to temptation and bought some Space Bags. Since it is supposed to be summer sometime soon in the Midwest, I have taken all the blankets and down comforters off the beds. This creates havoc on the linen closet and decreases storage to less then nil. What harm could they do?

This morning I decided to put them to the test. I stuffed, I sealed and then I sucked. Well I didn't suck. I let the vacuum do that! What kind of girl do you think I am.... Never mind, don't answer that! Surprisingly they actually performed as they said they would - woo wee! Then the OCD kicked in. What else can I squish down to nothing? Ooo, my sweaters. Oh and maybe all of Drake's winter pants. Maybe the cats.... no I'm just kidding. Though it would alleviate all their fur that seems to be plaguing the house as of late. Then hubby walked in and got caught up in the excitement. He found bags that can hang in the closet - "Maybe I will do all my winter shirts?! Let's go to the evil store that is Target and get some more!" Sigh...and the addiction begins.

Friday, June 06, 2008

death star canteen

This makes me laugh every frickin' time I watch it. Yes it's true, every time. I also highly recommend his 'Cake or Death' skit - priceless. Now, I command you to watch it or death by tray it will be!!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

i am oh so popular

I got invited to yet another party. Oh yes, this lassie is just soo loved. Sweetney is having a come as you are party. Sounds easy, right? Just take and post a picture of you right now. No, not after you have been all primped and showered - RIGHT NOW! So here I am, contemplating all the frickin' wallpaper paste on my bathroom wall and how the heck I am going to get it all off so I can paint without either scraping off all the drywall or killing myself. I will also take this moment to say wallpaper SUCKS donkey! I highly do not recommend it!!

So with that off my chest, come and party with me! Leave your link in the comments of love section and join in on all the fun!!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

what makes this lassie sassy

Yes, it is true. I am a self proclaimed tattoo whore. I love them! I LOVE how they look, I love them on other people and well, quite frankly, they are a bit of a turn on. For confirmation of this fact please check out this distinguished gentleman. HELLLLOOOO there!! If you have a tat you can probably relate to this next stream of thought. For me it is all about the anticipation. Come on... admit it. That little flutter in your stomach as you sit down in the parlor chair. The intensity of the feeling when you first hear the buzz of the needle - it is all coming back to me now....mmmm. Ok, sorry for that...... back to the nitty gritty. Wait!! One more thing!! I will also take this chance to put this little disclaimer out there - my pics do NOT do justice to my tats. I had to take them myself with one hand while swatting away the three year old with the other. So for their poor quality, I apologize.

I got my first tat in 1993. I went with my BFF after an all night road trip from Milwaukee to good ole small town Ohio. We were over tired and had talked about getting one together for quite some. It was on the drive home (Ohio) that we decided that today was the day. She would get hers on her thigh and I would get mine on my hip. The deal was done and I was the new owner of one black ankh with two Druid symbols on the sides. I hid it from the parents for a while but they eventually saw it on a family trip to Florida. They weren't mad, they knew I wanted one since I was a young teen. But my Mom did ask why I didn't get something cute like a butterfly or bumble bee. Sigh.....

The next one was in 1996. I was officially living in Milwaukee - all grown up and on my own. I had my own apartment, my own paycheck, my own life. I was officially free! I had been craving the needle for quite some time. I decided to add an Aztec sun around my first tattoo. I guess I can admit that this is the one I regret, or at least, would not pick if I had the choice to do it all over again. I do like it, don't get me wrong, but it definitely shows where I was at that stage in my life and I am just not there anymore.

Next came my Celtic Knot in 1997. You can read all about that one HERE. This tattoo was a joint effort and was when I recruited my hubby to the dark side. I actually gave him his as a birthday gift and got mine, well, because I wanted another one! He too has been bitten by the ink bug and has had trips back to the chair... moo ah ha ha! Soon I will infect everyone!! Did I mention I even infected my mother for her 60th birthday? Oh yes, now there is another post my friends!

I went to Siberia in 2004 to backpack through the Sayanne Mountain range. (This is definitely another post someday!!) The long and short of it is this - I went to Siberia, everyone there HATES Americans, I got spit on, we got lost in the mountains, we were rescues by a Russian Special Forces helicopter, luckily by the grace of God, I got back home to the States. Yeah, that's a mouthful. On one of my descents down one of the mountains I cranked my left ankle. It hurt like nobody's business but there was nothing, literally nothing, I could do about it. I had to keep going. There is so much tht happened on this trip - good, bad, ugly - that I needed something to recognize it. So I chose this frog.
The frog is to remind me to be Fully Reliant On God. The stars and the moon were what I looked at every night - knowing that Drake and hubby were looking at the same thing. The Russian word underneath the frog is the name of the valley in the middle of the mountain range where we were rescued - Schumak (shoemauck). A lot of info for a little tat isn't it?

And finally, at least as of today, is my most recent tattoo and the tat I entered in the party. As I have hinted, it is my favorite. I get lots of compliments and comments on it. I love, love, LUV this tattoo. You can read all about it here and of course here.

I think that just about does it, at least for me. There still is a lot of other ink in the family but that will have to be saved for another day. Be sure to go check out all the other inked and trendy people at Sunshine's party. I have to say it has been one hell of a party! Maybe she will make this an annual event.... now there is an idea!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

tattoo tuesday

It's official! The party has begun and WOW the attendees are hip and happening!Sunshine's tattoo party is in full effect. Many party goers have me stumped though quite a few have sparked my interest in yet another tattoo.

So join in, go and vote or at least check out all the cool ink that is out in the bloggershere. See if you can find me .. I will give you a hint, I am letter.....

Monday, June 02, 2008

more reasons i love my boys

Boys... you gotta love em! Yesterday, on my way to my soccer game, Drake and his friend C were in the backseat. They wanted to come to my game, not to watch me, but to play tennis. While driving along I hear Drake's friend C exclaim, "Oh man! I can't find my balls! Drake have you seen my balls??" I almost drove off the road from laughter - and the fact that I was laughing so hard because my eyes were filled with tears. I then had to block all the questions about why I was laughing so hard. Thankfully the radio was on and I could blame my hysterics on some random commercial.

And then there is Grady. Grady, who was trying to convince me this morning that he was a Power Ranger and Power Rangers do not go to school. I laughed and said that Power Rangers indeed go to school because that is how you become a Super Power Ranger. Thankfully that worked and off to school he went. And to make Monday better, his preschool had Lucky Charms for breakfast - score!!

So there is my life in a nutshell - boys, balls and Power Rangers. Ain't life grand?!