Friday, July 31, 2009

a letter to my fellow wal-mart customers revisited

This post was originally published on Tuesday, October 21, 2008. I am pleased (yet afraid to say out loud) that it has been at least a month since Kady threw a fit in Wal-Mart. Of course, it's been a month since we've been to Wal-Mart. . .but on a positive note, we did ditch the pacifier! [happy dance]

Dear Y'all,
I'm sorry. Yes, I am THAT mom, and that was my daughter. I'm sure you heard us. You know, the 2-year-old who screamed ALL THE WAY through Wal-Mart. I know several of you thought about calling DHS. Some of you even had your phones out (and may have made the call . . .). I would just like to explain my side of the story (before DHS gets here).

I rarely go to Wal-Mart, and when I do, I usually grab just the essentials. This time, the essentials took up more than my two arms could carry. . .so I got a shopping cart. It turns out my very determined and head-strong daughter (she was Ssssssooooooooo switched at birth with some other totally sweet and laid-back child) didn't want to sit in the cart. She wanted me to hold her. Call me a failure, but I am not able to push the cart and hold her. Thus, she attempted to make the great escape. . .by flinging herself out of the cart. So, while it's quite possible that it looked like I was throwing her out of the cart, I was actually holding her in. I PROMISE.

Shall I just point out that my lovely daughter has red hair? (and the temperament to go with it. . .) This is the child that will have the pacifier until the day that the orthodontist removes it from her braces. This is the child that refused to apologize to her daddy for over thirty minutes after she hit him. This is the child that holds her own against children two times her size. . .not that her brother has anything to do with that. . .And, while we're at it, did you notice my other child standing quietly? (He was thoroughly embarrassed as well. . .)

I'm sorry. I can't say that enough. I know that many of you go to Wal-Mart simply to relax and enjoy the calm, less-frenzied atmosphere. No? Oh, well, then surely you'll forgive me. And, if not, we'll wait till you return to Wal-Mart and you can hold my daughter in the cart. Thanks, for the offer, by the way.


Well, you can call DHS to get my name and contact information. They'll probably have me on their frequent offender list by tomorrow. . .Just ask for "That Woman in Wal-Mart."

Thursday, July 30, 2009

do you smell that?

Within the last month, two different family members have given me 8 different types of shampoo (many of which are travel size. . .I think we have an issue with hotel thievery. . .), 2 full bottles of body wash, and an entire line of skincare products (not to mention 2 sets of shoes and a "just another day in paradise" tote bag). . .What does this say about me? That I'm cheap? I need to bathe more? That I'll take anything?


Oddly, I'm not offended and am actually quite pleased with my plunder. . .

Vacation beckons as of today. Like any good "show," this one shall be running reruns for a few good days. Prop your feet up, sit back, eat some cheesecake, drink a Diet Dr. Pepper and enjoy the show. . .That's what I'll be doing, after all!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

he might be a giant

Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Kyler. He had ear infection after ear infection. No one could clear them up. No one could make them go away. They became a way of life for Kyler. One day, he went to a new ear, nose, throat doctor. He made his ears better over time. However, on that day, the doctor asked over and over again, "HOW old are you?" The doctor then said, "You're going to be a giant someday."

That little boy is growing up to be a giant.

My 8-almost 9-year-old needs size 14 jeans for school this year. I think he HAS to play basketball. Isn't it a law somewhere that if you're a certain height you must play basketball? It's boding well for his future as a Razorback, however. . . : )

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

quite possibly conspiring to take over the world

My kids fight. There, I said it. I try to stop it. I try to minimize it. I try to referee or interfere or exterminate it. I thought with 6 years between them, the sibling wars would be at a minimum. Unfortunately, that has not been the case. I've spent the last couple of years pretending (to the outside world) that it doesn't happen. I learned yesterday that perhaps I should be more concerned about their getting along in order to conspire together.

Kevin and Kyler worked all day Saturday to clear a wooded area where our new water line will go. (Side note: Just because you ask the well driller and he says he wouldn't drill any deeper, don't believe him. DRILL DEEPER.) With this new water line, I can have a pool, or a jacuzzi, or a professional laundry business, or. . .sorry, I got sidetracked. Where was I? Oh, so, Kevin and Kyler worked hard at clearing the brush out. Kevin let Kyler, our 8-year-old!, drive his old pickup. He let him DRIVE, as in brake and gas and all. Granted, it was just in the yard, but you can understand how a mother might get a little. . .um. . .nervous about something like that, right? Anyway, somehow, my 8-year-old son and husband survived the weekend without any motor vehicle accidents.

Monday morning dawns bright and early. Kady announces she does not want to go to the Best-babysitter-in-the-world's house. Considering we can all be a little cranky in the morning (although that's usually reserved for Kyler and me), I didn't think anything about it. I continued getting ready and slowly started listening to the conversation taking place in my bedroom. Kady was trying to talk Kyler into driving her to see Daddy. Kyler was explaining that it would take 4 hours to get down there, and Daddy would be at work by the time they got there.

My question is this: How worried should I be? And, could you send Kyler home if you notice him cruising by your house, please?

Friday, July 24, 2009


I have updated my list of blogs I read (located near the bottom of the page on the right). Now, you can find most of the blogs I read on a regular basis. IF you do NOT want your blog included, please let me know (either leave a comment or email me). Otherwise, show these amazingly creative people some love, would ya?

rednecks R us gets married

My boss (AKA Boss Lady) grew up in an even smaller town than me. The county she's from has NO stop lights in it. None. Not even one. She pointed out this engagement announcement yesterday. . .

(Names and places have been hidden to protect privacy. I can assure you this is an ACTUAL engagement announcement in an ACTUAL paper in Arkansas.)

A*** F*** of Etown and R*** F*** of Ltown announce the engagement and approaching marriage of their daughter, H*** R*** F***, to C*** L*** Y***, son of S*** and D*** R*** of Ptown and L** Y*** of Pville. The ceremony is planned for 2 p.m. Saturday, July 18 (2009) at Fort D***. Family and friends are invited to attend the ceremony and the reception following and bring a covered dish.

Ok. Let's think about this. You might be a redneck if

  • you request people bring their own food to the reception.

  • you get married at the creek (FYI Boss Lady just confirmed that Fort D*** is a spot on the creek. It's where everyone swims on Piney Creek. I could not make that up.)

  • your tattoos show in the engagement announcement.

  • you have rebel flag tattoos.

  • you are wearing scrubs in your engagement announcement.

  • you wear a shirt that the sleeves have been ripped out.

  • you wear a camouflage hat for said picture.

  • you marry a man that does the above.

Now, help me show these people the love, ok? : )

Thursday, July 23, 2009

church lady says. . .

Two aunts and an uncle came to have lunch with my parents yesterday. I think they just wanted to make sure we were taking good care of my dad (Harley) since the big medical scare of '09. . .Evidently, we passed, because they have returned home. While they were here, my dad wanted to take his sister, brother, and sister-in-law to tour the church my parents have always attended. (If you know my dad, you understand that last sentence. If you don't, let me just say, my dad is eccentric, and it's amazing I'm THIS normal. . .)

Their church has a food pantry that is open on Wednesday. A friend of theirs was working at the food pantry. We'll call him Jack. Dad explained that they were showing his family the church. Jack said it was a good church--a good place to be. He then told my family, "We're open every day. We're even open on Sunday, Harley."

Speaking of that church, Kyler and Kady have been attending vacation Bible school there this week. Kady is not really old enough, but she doesn't believe that. They kindly let her attend the pre-K class, where she's been fairly attentive. The music portion is quite entertaining. Kady sings at the top of her lungs and dances to her song. Our conversation after VBS last night went like this.

Me: Kady, you did a great job singing!
Kady: Thanks! (and she starts singing. . .)
Me: Kady, on Sunday, you have to sing what the other kids are singing.
Kady: Oh.
Me: You have to make the same hand movements as the other kids, too.
Kady: Oh.
Me (since we're on a roll here. . .): If you look at Mrs. Jennifer, she'll tell you what to sing and what to do with your hands.
Kady: Oh.

Hmmm. Perhaps preparation is not one of my strong suits. . .On the plus side, Kady does appear to make a joyful (Spirit-filled!) noise.

Alright, let's here it. If you noticed the title, you may (or not) have realized that it was based on a Saturday Night Live character. What's your favorite cast or character of SNL? I have a theory on this, so please share. . .

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

small town life

Living in a small town is all about making connections. I don't mean the type of connections where you know the dirt on the mayor or city council members (although I just might. . .). Life in a small town is about finding common ground with those around you. It's just what you naturally do. If a small-town citizen meets someone from Los Angeles, the first thing they'll say is, "I once had a cousin that moved to L.A." It's not that we think you might know said cousin. It's that we need that common ground. We need to feel that connection to you in some way. Why? Because life in a small town is made up of those very complicated, twisted, convoluted connections. After having lived in the same area for most of my life (and now working in that same small area), my connections are sounding something like this.

Her mother was once married to my husband's father.

Her father is the one who ****, and her mother used to work for ****.

Her ex-husband is the one who ***, and she graduated with ****. She used to work at ****. Her mother is the one who ****.

Her grandmother is the one who ***. Her aunt works at Dr. ***'s office. Her mom works at the **** school. She's ****'s cousin.

We went to grade school together. She once ***. Her little sister is the one who ****. She married ***.

These are honest-to-goodness descriptions of people I know. This is how your brain works when you live in a small town. This is also how you describe people to others. Eventually, you find a way to explain who you're talking about. Usually, it's not that they don't know the person, it's simply that you haven't found your mutual connection.

This was made clear to me this weekend when we took M and L (my nephews by marriage) to the rodeo in our small town. These boys are used to living in the "big" city. They are not used to knowing everyone at a community event. Every time Travis walked by, they would shout, "THERE'S TRAVIS!" or "HEY, Travis" or "Kyler, there's your buddy, Travis."
The only problem with this? Travis is a grown man. He was meeting his girlfriend's friends for the first time. . .who just happened to be sitting right below us. I can only hope they didn't hear the two wild hooligans sitting behind me. . . Those are connections you might not want to make.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Goodbye medical school

Kyler and Kady were lucky enough to spend some time with two of their cousins this weekend. It was a blast for the kids. I took all but Kady to the rodeo Saturday night. More about that later.

Last night, the youngest cousin, L, threw up. We had just finished eating pizza. The kids had gotten up to play a few more minutes before they all had to return to their respective homes. L just started throwing up. The older boys, Kyler and M, made typical 8 year-old boy noises, e.g., "ew, gross!," "Dude, he's throwing up!," "man, that's gross." Kady started making little coughing noises, which quickly turned into gagging noises. Then, she started throwing up.

MooMoo, the nurse grandma, looked at me and said, "Well, it looks like Kady does not have a career in the medical field." Goodbye medical school. Hello law school.

P.S. Luckily, everyone was well after this.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

if only I were kidding. . .

Today was a day like any other. We were headed to work/babysitter. Both kids were in their little worlds. I was driving slowly and cautiously [clears throat] down the dirt road. (My mom reads this.)

Then, Kyler saw a turtle. Before I could truly get stopped, he was out of the car and running to the turtle (or terrapin, if you prefer). He talked me into letting him take it to the babysitter to show the other kids. Then, we were to turn the turtle loose. . .

I expected the turtle to ride peacefully in the floorboard of my car. I didn't expect a wild, out-of-control rock-star turtle who would trash my car. What I got was this. . .
(Don't look at the dirty carpet!)

That would be a mountain of turtle poop. I decided (not knowing the best way to clean turtle poop up) that it might be best to let it dry, and then vacuum and scrub the mess up, lest I smear turtle poop everywhere (eewwwwww!).

Yep, that's my life. . . and this afternoon I might trade places with you. . . if anyone is interested in cleaning up turtle poop.

Monday, July 13, 2009

let's go to vegas. . .

I've never been a gambler. I have gambled exactly once in my life. Kev and I thought it was sad that we had made it to the tender ages of, well, the age wasn't important. The fact is, we wanted to see what we had missed, so one year for my birthday, we loaded up and drove exactly one state over to gamble. It turns out we weren't really missing anything. Now, to be fair, if I had better luck, I might feel differently, but my luck stinks. You know the saying, "If she didn't have bad luck, she wouldn't have any luck at all?" That's me.

I'm also a "usually by the books" kinda girl. I might bend the rules a little, but I'm too afraid of getting in trouble to do too much. For example, we have uniforms at work. They are quite emphatic that we wear solid color scrubs (in our departmental color). Many cheat and wear this or that, but I'm always in my solid color scrubs.

It just so happens that we spent an impromptu weekend with Kev. We hadn't planned on going down at all, but we did. Then, he talked us into staying until this morning (at which point we had to get up EARLY and drive 3 1/2 hours in the pouring rain. . .but it was worth it). The point that I'm slowly making is that I am out of uniform today. Today happens to be the day my manager got an email encouraging her to encourage her staff to adhere to the dress code. . .

I'm thinking of renting out my services in Vegas. I could help people know what not to bet on. You know, if I bet red, you should bet black, etc. Whaddya think?

Thursday, July 9, 2009

33 years of devotion

My mom and dad were married 33 years ago today. It's been a crazy 33 years (not that I was around for all of it. . .), but they've made it. My dad is not always easy to live with. He can be a bear, actually. He used to have a quick temper, but that's mellowed over the years. My mom can be somewhat emotional. She can be impulsive at times. She can carry a grudge. . .
There is, however, one personality trait they have in common: their strong devotion to family. Growing up, I always knew my parents would be there for me. No matter what I did, my parents would love me and support me. They have different ways of sharing that love, but there is no doubt the love is there.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

where I completely jump the gun

In an effort to be completely new and unlike anyone else, I'll update you on what's going on in my life. Mom and Dad are getting older. You've read how Dad gave us quite a scare a few weeks ago. (It turns out it was his birthday that week, and he was feeling a little overlooked. Just kidding, but he did spend his birthday in the hospital's cardiac care unit. . .blech.) Mom and Dad have a farm. They have cattle and horses. Dad is looking to sell the cattle, but he will probably keep a few horses. My brother has been doing most of the farm work over the last couple of years. He's fairly newly married (about 2 years) with a fairly new job and will soon have 2 kiddos to chase after. He's busy with his own life, and I'm not sure how long he'll live near our parents.

Enter me.

Kevin, the kids, and I went to Mom and Dad's last weekend. We picked out a place to BUILD OUR HOUSE!! We are absolutely, positively, completely in LOVE with fifty acres to the north and west of my parents. I'm so excited, but unfortunately, I'm jumping the gun a little. First, we have to sell our house. Then, we have to get all of our ducks in a row. Finally in eighteen (!) months or so, we'll get to build. . . Kevin would be embarrassed if he even knew I was already blogging about this. (Luckily, he doesn't read my blog. . .)

Now, I'll be near enough to Mom and Dad to help out. I can be there if they need me. It's going to be much easier than driving 30 minutes from work to their house and then an hour from their house to my house. We will be far enough to give each other some privacy, but I hope they're looking forward to this as much as I am!!

That's all folks. No pictures (yet). No floor plans yet. No house on the market, even. Let's all pray that everything moves quickly, or I'm going to be a nervous wreck!!

If you follow Queen B (and who doesn't?!), you know she's currently building a house. Let's keep this copy cat post to ourselves, shall we?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

weight loss update

I sit here eating a white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookie. Don't laugh. The truth is, I've lost 18 pounds so far. Numerous inches have also banished themselves from my waist and thighs. I am thrilled. Kevin is thrilled simply because I'm thrilled. (He says he couldn't care less what I weigh. . .) I told him when I started this that I needed a big incentive to lose this weight. He came through. He has agreed to take me on a cruise (his idea of torture) if I get to my goal weight. I have 12 pounds to go. You read that right. 12 pounds. I can totally do this, right?! So, ideas, suggestions are welcome (and keep me motivated). Give me cruise ideas, hints, tips, etc., please. Oh, and Kevin claims he'll get a spray-on tan when we go. Don't worry, that's definitely blog-worthy! : )

Monday, July 6, 2009

head, shoulder, tickle bugs, and toes

Kev is the fun parent. He tickles the kids. He wrestles with them. He's always there when we do fun stuff. I'm the boring, always-there parent, who gets them dressed and fed and in the bed. The other night, I was quizzing Kady on body parts. I asked her what her shoulders, knees, etc., were named. She was doing great. Then, I showed her my fingers and asked what they were. She hesitated just a moment and said, "Ticklebugs!!" I guess I'm glad Kev's not the only one that has ticklebugs.

Friday, July 3, 2009

boys vs. girls

I tend to view myself as fairly open minded about many things. When I became a parent, my goal was to develop intelligent, empathetic, independent thinkers, who would one day conquer the part of the world they inhabited (whatever part that might be). (I'm also slightly optimistic. . .)

I had everything planned. My kids were going to enjoy school. They would love reading, yet be very athletic. They would be kind and helpful, hardworking and studious. Rigid gender stereotypes would be forgotten and definitely unlearned.


No one told me (or maybe I didn't listen) that gender stereotypes are largely unlearned. They are ingrained in their DNA or something. As much as I wanted Kyler to be kind to the baby doll we had when he was a toddler, he insisted on throwing it or shooting it or . . .I was a little worried, or um, I was highly worried but tried not to show it. Somewhere along the way, I realized that Kyler is a wonderfully kind and sweet young man who doesn't give a flip about playing with a baby doll. . .and that's ok.

Along came Kady. She loves to play with her baby dolls. She loves "Barbie" dresses (frilly dresses whose skirt will twirl with her). She "mothers" everything. She is, for lack of a better word, a total girl!

That brings me to my final thought. (Or not, you know how I love to ramble. . .) The kids both made cards for their daddy. Kyler's was cute and boyish (with guitars and such on it). Kady's was girly with colored swirls all over it. The next morning, Kady wanted to take hers to the babysitter and show it off. She also had a doily in her hand. I told her to take the card and leave the doily. She puckered her lip and replied, "but my card might get cold. . ." You are a total girl if you think your card needs a blankie!