"Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self."

Thursday, March 31, 2011


my teeth are out. im fat-faced and going to fall asleep to frasier. wait, im not sending a text? oh i forgot i could blaaahg on my phone.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

WW Wednesday

Hey there! It's that time of the week again. This morning's weigh-in went pretty well. I had a loss at the scale. It was nothing dramatic, and it didn't even make up for my gain last week, but it was a loss nonetheless. Next week I plan to be back with another loss.
Slowly but surely I'm achieving my goals. You might have to see the words "WW Wednseday" pop up for MANY more weeks, but eventually I'll get there.

Lesson learned this week: Even if I'm sick and don't feel like eating much, I should still make good choices when I do eat. Also, eating one fresh chocolate chip cookie does not mean I should eat 3 more. Yes, that second cookie is going to taste good, but it's not going to satiate me any more than the first. And then I just keep going...

Goal for the week: HAVE MY WISDOM TEETH REMOVED! This appointment has been rescheduled so many times that I won't believe it until I am actually home and doped-up on painkillers, blissfully unaware of the number of nasty diapers the hubs has to change while I'm drooling on my pillow.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Focus of a Four-Year-Old

Earlier today I was dancing with BigBoy. He was standing on the ottoman and I was on my knees on the floor in front of him. I said playfully "Oh, you're so tall! How tall are you?"
He replied, "Big biggest 4!" It made me laugh. So often I think of him as an older child. After all, he is the oldest child in the house.

Still, he is only 4. He takes pride in his work, though.
When I picked him up from school today he was sitting at a table with a pencil and some papers while the rest of his class was in circle time with the teacher. I asked her if he had gotten in trouble. She said "No, he just hates to leave a project unfinished. He has extreme focus for the task at hand so we try to let him work all he wants when time allows."

It's true. He does have extreme focus, and not just at working. I could learn a thing or two from my Boy.

When he plays, he plays hard.

When he sleeps, he sleeps hard.

When he protests, he protests HARD.

But when he loves...
Oh his love: that's what comes the easiest.

Now if only he would stop whining so hard. :)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Boys Town

Last week I set up BigBoy's Toy Story tent in the living room for him to play with for a few days. Even BabyCakes had fun in the tent.

I knew it would be a big hit when the neighbor boys came over to play. Usually would just let them figure out what to play and go about my folding laundry/washing dishes/random household activity while they entertained themselves, but I had just read this post about using a little extra effort and "wowing" somebody that day.
I thought back to all the clubhouses and forts of my own childhood and knew I could do the boys so much better than a simple tent.

That's right. I broke out extra furniture, pillows, sheets, baby gates, and some cardboard.
The boys LOVED it.

We even had a race car room (because you could race cars on the roof), and a Spiderman room/ coloring room. They got out every "boy" toy we own to put in that fort, but they also cleaned them all up before they left. (I should mention that BabyCakes was napping during most of their visit, otherwise she would have destroyed their fort Godzilla-fashion.)

I love when BigBoy plays with these boys. They are fun, polite, well-behaved children -- precisely the influence I want for my own child.

I'm glad I was able to "wow" them. Luckily when your audience is under the age of 6, it isn't that difficult. :)

Thursday, March 24, 2011

I'll have a Thursday with a cherry on top, please

Ahhhh. Sweet diet-cherry-limeade-perfection...
Oh, sorry about that. I was just enjoying my treat from Sonic.
Warmer weather always gets me craving slushes and cherry limeades and a diet one is only 1 WW point for a large. :D Me likey.

I thought I'd update you on my hugging thus far.
Yesterday I hugged two neighbors. They were both different but both went well.
Today I haven't hugged anyone but the munchkins.
That's okay. I'm not really in a hugging mood.
Let's not force it, m'kay?

So far: Hugs - 3. Weak "Hey" - 1.

(Btw, I'm giving "Hey" points when I could have hugged the person but didn't.)

This tulip was barely hanging on for dear life. It was in that don't-touch-me-or-all-my-petals-will-fall-off-and-I'll-officially-be-a-goner period. A good reminder that life can be beautiful even near its end.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

WW Wednesday

Ok, I'm ripping the bandaid off: I gained this week.
It was a hard week. Let's leave it at that because we all have them and there's no need wallowing in the details.
I'm going to try my damndest not to make it a bad month, though.

I did go for several walks with the children (and the hubs) and that was my goal for the week. The walks may not have been very aerobic, but they were beneficial to the spirit anyway.

What I learned this week: I'm not sure, and that's okay. What's important is that I still strive to learn.

Goal for the upcoming week: Focus less on the food and more on the person eating it (me). ( I don't really care what you eat.)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Let's hug it out

As I mentioned earlier, I'm going to start hugging more.

I should clear up a few things first:

1. I'm not going to randomly hug people. Just women I already really like and care about and only when it has been a while since seeing them. I'm not going to say "Oh hi! I haven't seen you in 2 whole hours! Let's embrace!"

2. I'm not going to suddenly become touchy-feely. My hugs won't linger into the land of "okay... AWKWARD" and I'm not going to reach out for your hand to comfort you. Skin on skin? Shiver.
Furthermore, I will NEVER kiss someone who doesn't sleep in my house. The elusive kissing-greeters look just like the rest of us, though, so beware.

3. I'm not going to become a close-talker. You have your space and I have mine. Actually, I need more space because of my errr, top half. I shouldn't be able to smell your deoderant or lack thereof. Also, wazzup with the whisper talk?

4. I'm actually a pretty laid-back person. Though this blogpost series makes me sound like it, I do not in fact have a stick up my butt.
I don't have any intimacy issues, and I know there are people who love me.

I've just never been a hugger.

We'll see if I can change that.

My first gratuitous hug (I say gratuitous because they did not have a loved-one die and they are not a blood-relative of mine) was today with Preschool Mom #1.
She called me when I was on my way to the school and I was still laughing from my conversation about it with Rachel (she thinks I'm nuts) so I told her my plan.
Preschool Mom #1 is not a hugger either, so I told her I was going to practice on her.
(Why does that sound dirty?)
She reluctantly agreed.

I saw her. We hugged, laughed, I did a little double-pat on the back saying "Hey! How are you?!" and then it was over. No biggie.

So far: Hugs-1, Weak "Hey"- Zero.

Anyone care to experiment with me?
(Again, didn't mean to sound dirty.)

To Hug or Not to Hug

Do you know someone who greets you with a big, happy-to-see-you, bear hug whenever you meet? I do, but none of them live within 4 hours of me.

I've never been a hugger. Well, I take that back. I hug on my kids and even a couple, like two, kids that I did not myself give birth to, but past that it stops. Oh I'll give you a nice smile and even a compliment but a hug.... notsomuch. What's wrong with a quick wave?

I enjoy huggers, though. I miss them.

That's why I'm going to try to become one.

I was telling my friend Rachel about this and she said "I think you're just either a hugger or you're not." She herself (is that proper grammar?) is not a hugger but agreed that she appreciates a great hug from those who are.

More and more I meet women that are here in my area alone. No family, no super-close friends, even. We say Hi and exchange pleasantries, then we get in our minivans and go home.

Well, No. More.
I would continue to elaborate on this but I need to leave to pick up BigBoy from preschool.
The experiment starts there. I'm going to hug someone and burst my personal space bubble if it kills me.
I'll let you know how it goes... wish me luck!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Miss Pearline

It was another beautiful day in the South today.
We went for a long walk around the neighborhood this afternoon and I finally remembered to bring along my camera. There's a tree I'm in love with that lives a couple streets over. She's so special that she deserves a name.

Something like "Miss Pearline."

She reminds me of a little old lady at church who always has tissues and butterscotch candies in her purse, and looks at you with the loving, twinkling eyes only a seasoned grandmother can have.

Okay, okay, I know. It's a tree.
Bear with me. It was a long week.

I'll leave you with these U2 lyrics:

What once was hurt
What once was friction
What left a mark
No longer stings
Because Grace makes beauty
Out of ugly things...
Grace finds beauty in everything.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Blue skies smiling on me, Nothing but blue skies do I see

It's beautiful in Carolina today. If BabyCakes weren't napping, you better believe I wouldn't be blogging. :)

This morning we Curly girls joined Neighbor Melissa and her girls for an NC State Ag Dept. "Farm Fun Days" outing.

I was really excited because, being the second-born, poor BabyCakes usually just gets schlepped around on errands and BigBoy events. It's rarely just about her.

The weather was so perfect, I just knew this would be a fun time.

But then we got there and THIS is what we found:


In the middle of the morning.

On a weekday.

BabyCakes wasn't interested in the animals at all. She mostly stayed in the stroller.
To be fair, their set-up was pretty good. A nice variety of your standard barnyard animals and equipment, and it was free.
I guess I just grew up around this stuff too much to want to fight a crowd for it.

Even when we were leaving, there was still a nonstop stream of cars entering the farm.
It was still a nice morning out, though, and I'm glad Melissa invited us. We would've stayed for the free ice cream but we had to get back to town and pick up BigBoy from preschool.

After preschool, we joined several of his classmates for a picnic lunch at a local park.
BabyCakes did a little exploring of her own while the big kids played on the playground.

She took a tumble (while her mouth was full of food -- good Mama, huh?) and my friend Mindy took this picture while I was helping her up.

I asked her to take our picture so there would be some evidence of me as her mother.
Not the most flattering shot (Hello, double chin!), but whatevs.

We left pretty early because blondie needed her beauty sleep.

This was definitely one of those mornings that I was very aware of how blessed I am.
Yes, BabyCakes woke up like FOUR times in 2.5 hours last night, but I'll take a night like that if it means a morning like this.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Gratuitous Baby Shots

Oh and love this one, too. :)

She was completely unimpressed with BigBoy's "mean face."

Mean Face

Only when you're Big-Biggest 4, as BigBoy puts it, does making a "mean face" include a teddy bear under your arm.

Love it.

Love him.


WW Wednesday

This is going to be short and sweet because I have 5 minutes until I need to leave to pick up BigBoy from preschool.

I had a loss at the scale today. Not huge but not too shabby considering my dinner last night consisted of deep dish pizza and Cadbury eggs. :)

Lessons learned this week: When I really wanted Easter candy at Walgreens I bought 2 cadbury eggs instead of a whole bag of chocolate. I think the lesson in that was that I have more restraint now than I used to, and I shouldn't overlook that.

Goal for the week: Walk with the kids as much as the weather will allow us.

Ok, BabyCakes has a nasty diaper that needs changing.
Any volunteers? No?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Bed Bottle & Beyond

With Spring just around the corner, daffodils and pear trees aren't the only things in bloom around here.

Yard Sale Season is upon us!

Now, I know all yard sale areas are not created equal. A lot of you are probably thinking "Yeah, but all they ever have is junk!"
The cluster of communities in my region is great for Saturday-morning bargains, though.
Here are some recent yard sale finds that found their way to BabyCakes' room.
I took these photos in the early evening so please forgive their quality.

I found this quilted pillow at an 80+ year-old lady's sale in our neighborhood.
It was $1 and I thought the cheery colors were cute.

This was the same lady's baby bottle. It is glass with little terriers playing on it, and the fluid ounce measurements are embossed as well. I felt guilty paying her the $1 she was asking for it. I plan to use it as a vase in BabyCakes' room.
Sadly, I had no flowers to put in it. :( Nothing lonlier than an empty vase -- or bottle, as is often the case in my home.

And now for the best find of the season...
a new (to me) crib!
Last week I was putting BabyCakes in her hand-me-down crib from BigBoy and I heard a snap. The next night was a distinct crack. Our almost-5-year-old $150 crib from Walmart has served us well over the years, but the rail finally had too much. It wasn't bad but even with the weak side against the wall, I no longer felt secure about its structural integrity.

(Notice the beadboard detailing like her other furniture has?!)

This white simmons sleigh crib was $20 (over $500 new) including the mattress. It was 3 years old and MUCH nicer than our old one and really in incredible condition. (We put the drop-side against the wall.)

The blanket was a $1 find from a consignment store in Kentucky.

Back to the yardsale, I told them they could keep the mattress and I didn't even haggle on the price.
I don't like to screw with my bargain-karma. If something is already a price I'm willing to pay, I never try to get it cheaper. Even if I know I probably could.

I might be cheap frugal but I'm not tacky.

Friday, March 11, 2011

An update

Daddy got to go home.

He's back on blood thinners but he's home.

Thank-you for your prayers and support.



Eight hours of sweet uninterrupted, rejuvenating sleep!
I can hear the voices in my head again! (Name that show!)

Thank-you thank-you thank-you, BabyCakes!

The video I posted of you jumping in your crib is looking much cuter now. :)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

A special request

My father is in the coronary care unit. Without going into detail, just know that he has a history of heart problems.

Last night I received this email from him:
(I'm sorry, Daddy, to put this out there, but I wanted to share it.)

"Hey Hon!

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! We had a great time visiting. Just getting to spend time with you and the kids does my heart good. You have 2 precious little kids! I just love being around them. I know it gets hard sometimes, but it is all worth the effort. You are doing such a great job with them. You can tell they are well loved.
Maybe this visit will hold me a little while, but seeing them makes me miss them all that much more. You do know that I'm just as excited to see you too?! You'll always be my baby, but it's also fun to play with your babies.
Love you more than you know,

Please pray for him.

Thank you,


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

WW Wednesday

Two posts in one day -- I'm on fire lately! :)

This last week involved one indulgent date night, one cookout with friends, and also some delivery pizza for lunch and dinner and breakfast the next morning. I was good to compensate with healthier choices in my other meals, though.

Today walking in to WW I was uncertain as to my fate. Last week I thought I had done so well and I got a little slapped around. It's always exciting to step on that scale and this week I had a smile-worthy loss.

I think the key to all of this for me is to not be a perfectionist about it.
I absolutely do not want my weight loss efforts to include strategies that I cannot maintain. I do not want to wake up one morning and think "I haven't had chocolate in 9 months. I think I'll eat a whole bag of Hershey Kisses now."

FINALLY I've accepted that in order to have the large amount of success I want (in my weight-loss of course), it is going to take a lot of failing.

It's simple as that: Get back up every. time. you. fall. down. (Also known as a life of moderation, I suppose.)

To me "falling down" could be having 2 3 Krispy Kremes for breakfast, going all week without exercising, or even having a gain on the scale that day.

Lesson learned this week: If I want to continue to lose and become a healthier person, I have to reshape what I consider is a normal amount of food for me. After losing 40 pounds, I need fewer calories to maintain my weight. So duh, I have to adjust my diet to reflect that. ("Tracking" in WW --something I still didn't do last week. I WAS very aware of what I was eating, though, and kept a loose mental tally).

Goal for this week: Track every single day. Try to reevaluate some of my old stand-by's to see if they are really still working for me. Also, eat more fruit.

P.S. When my WW buddy Melissa and I walked in today, this angel on earth standing to the side said "Here's the skinny girls!"
HA! Only in a WW meeting... :)

Calling all Moms!

I need your help. BabyCakes has not allowed me to get a decent night's sleep in over 2 weeks. Actually, I don't know how long it's been.
At first I attributed it to her teeth, then a cold, but now I don't know what to think. She keeps waking up in the middle of the night and resisting going back to sleep. This is very strange for her.
Sometimes she just wants to get up and play. I'm taking away her morning nap in the hopes that it will help, but last night it didn't.

Sorry this isn't a well-written post but it reflects me right now. I'm headachey and my muscles hurt.

I took some video last night of her waking up around 8, an hour after she went to bed. When she wakes up in the middle of the night I don't really talk to her, so this video isn't a good representation of most of our nighttime scenarios, but I did want to get some footage of her jumping for posterity. She is pretty cute, after all. :)

So anyway, imagine the jumping plus crying (usually just from her) and you'll get the picture for the nighttime.

Are we thinking separation anxiety? Sometimes she's just happy as can be to jump and sing "Mamamama, dadadadada!" Just a phase?
I'm having trouble seeing through the fog of my delirium.

Help me fix this now or I'm taking away the baby pics.
That's right, I'm pulling out the big guns!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Pursuit of Happyness

Some would say I live in a small house.
The average U.S. home is over 2,400 square feet.

Not quite 1,400 square feet, my 3 bedroom/ 2 bath Craftsman does the job. We have a 1-car garage and no guest room but a mighty fine air mattress. There are definitely areas that could use some breathing space, but I almost never feel cramped in my living quarters.

I think the biggest reason for this is the fact that I don't like to keep things that have no use or special meaning to our family.

Related to that, I think it is a shame when items that we say mean a great deal to us, end up sitting in a box marked "Keepsakes" for years.

I try to make those things a continuing part of my life.

Here's a little example of how I put that principle into action in my own home:

J's grandfather (PaPa or Happy to his peers) was a big part of his life as a child. Sadly, he died of cancer when J was 10. Everyone I've met who knew him has stories of this larger-than-life personality -- a force to be reckoned with. J worshiped him.

I think all of us, if we are lucky, have someone in our lives that we connect to like that.
After J's mother passed away, his father gave us the flag she was given upon his burial. He was in WWII and a proud American.

We also have his domino set (something he often played with the family) and a bar he built.

I may have never known Happy, but I do know his legacy.
Now he's a part of my living room... and my life.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Date Night

Last night I went out on a date. Yes, it was with my husband of almost 10 years (wow) but it was a real DATE. I even wore non-flat shoes!
My parents are in town and they fed the children and put them to bed so that J and I could go out for the first time since October.

We drove to a local mall that has a nice outdoor section of shops, restaurants, fountains, and a movie theater. Unfortunately because it was Sunday the stores closed at 6:00, but we still had a great time.
We went to Firebirds and I had the best meal I've had in ages.
The loaded baked potato I ate was nothing short of sinful.

We even got dessert. Two, in fact!
We don't go out often so we decided to make the most of it (and my WW weekly points allowance).

(Images courtesy of http://www.firebirdsrestaurants.com/)

After dinner we went to the first movie we've seen together in a theater since before the children were born. Nothing really looked super-interesting but we wanted to see a movie so we watched Hall Pass.

The movie was, well, what you might expect, but it was still just soooo cool to be out on a date with the hubs.

There were a couple times when the movie got loud and we both said that our first thought was "Don't wake the kids!"

Even enjoying ourselves alone on our date, we were still parents. :)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Dear My-side-of-the-bed,

I'm sorry. I know I've been distant lately.

What can I say? Having children ain't all spontaneous hugs and squeals of glee.
Sometimes they get sick with colds that last seemingly forever and morph into pink eye and ear infections.
Sometimes they get new teeth in.
Sometimes they jump up and down and cry in their crib because they pooped and don't want to sleep in it and then even after changing them, soothing them, feeding them, and promising them you will name the next child you will never have after them if they will just let you get a couple hours of continuous sleep-- they still won't give it up.

I know you are lonely. I know you don't think I'm committed to this relationship.
Believe me when I tell you that this is hurting me as much as it is hurting you.
This morning I took a shower to try to feel human again. I started the water, stepped in the shower... and realized I still had my underwear on.

Next I began the day-long process of giving myself a caffeine transfusion.
My blood is no longer suitable for pregnant vampires.

I hope we can have a rendezvous this evening, but we might have to keep it short and sweet.

Sometimes life happens.