Option Number 1:
Friday, April 30, 2010
Option Number 1:
Thursday, April 29, 2010
Blindsided. That is the only word that can describe how I felt when I learned of your disease. It came out of nowhere. It hit me hard. And, I am still trying to wrap my head around how you ended up here. Here. In the situation where you daily are choosing between life and death, and daily making the wrong choice. Here. Where your body is telling you to stop. Just stop. But you can't. Your disease has taken over and polluted your mind. You try your best to pretend that everything is going to be okay, and that you are not scared of death. But that is cowardly. Cowardly, in that you are choosing the easy route. You are choosing the path that requires the least amount of heart ache, pain, and trouble for you. It is selfish. You can no longer see past your own desires. You can't see the pain in your loved ones eyes, the tears that have been shed on your behalf, and the big black hole that you will leave in our lives once you breathe no more.
I bounce back and forth between being completely understanding and sympathetic to your disease, and then a half hour later, I am angry. Angry at you, for no longer being the man I knew. For refusing help, for destroying our hopes, and for not wanting to live.
So, I sit 1,200 miles away and removed from the situation, but still affected, and still just as helpless as those that are physically near you. There is nothing I can do to make you change your mind. There is nothing I can do to make you want to live, get healthy, enjoy the rest of your life. You have to want to do that. The only thing I can do is cling to the memories I have of you and the wonderful childhood you gave us. I want that to be your legacy. Not your alcoholism. I wish my mere existence was enough to make you want to stay sober. But, it isn't. See this?
Six beautiful miracles all lined up on the couch. Each one of them special to you in their own way. Some share your blood and some share your heart. They all adore you. You. You as you used to be. I would love for you to impact their childhood the way you impacted mine. It kills me that you are taking that from them.
In all of this mess, what am I Thankful for this Thursday? I am thankful for this.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Did you ever wonder at what age kids started demanding certain brands, or styles of clothing? I did. I thought I would be able to dress my girls however I liked until they were at least 6 or 7 years old. After that, I figured they would succumb to peer pressure and demand certain brands in order to fit in with their peers and begin to exert their own taste in fashion. Well, I was hella wrong, cause the age that starts is 4! The other day, Cam pointed out a number of little girls in her class that have Twinkle Toe shoes. She jumped up and down and begged for a pair of those shoes. She even dragged me in front of the TV one morning to watch a commercial about Twinkle Toes (made by Sketchers). Well, the child has feet that grow faster than the stink in the diaper pail, and she needed new shoes. So, meh. Why not? The store did not have them in her size, so we ordered them and we picked them up last night.
Cute, right? And the toes light up when she walks. Annoying, but cute, right? And since this store has a buy one get one 50 policy, we couldn't leave out Miss Bellie Boo.
She can't even walk in shoes with a sole like this, but one day she will. They are so tiny, and so cute, oh, and they light up too! We put them on her last night and they totally look like clown shoes on her wittle feet. She'll grow in to them by summer.
I almost forgot my point. The word. On the way home from the mall, Cam says, "Mom, my Twinkle Toes are sooooo PUTE!" Pute? Huh? In all of her sass and splendor she explains, "PUTE. You know, Cute, and Pretty at the same time." Oh. I get it. I didn't realize a 4 year old could be that clever. And now I feel like a hip momma clued in on four year-old lingo. Add that one Urban Dictionary.
And one more thing, Cam did not go to bed on time last night, so her brand new precious shoes are sitting on top of our bureau today along with her TV which was also removed from her bedroom. She'll have to earn the right to wear these bad boys. And no, we aren't going to buy her everything her little heart desires, as hard as that might be.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Then, this year. Ahhhh. She loves it! You can just tell by lookin' at her!
Monday, April 26, 2010
While our school might not be a perfect fit for you, it is for us and I don't think I'll question that again. I adore moments like these, when the children play and learn, and experience life outside of the classroom and playground. And, I am thankful for teachers like Miss V, who dedicate themselves to what they do. So, although my Pre-School may or may not be better than yours, it really doesn't matter, cause it is perfect for us!
Saturday, April 24, 2010
For over 10 years the hubs played baseball professionally and even dabbled in the Bigs for a bit. Being that what it is, I've brushed elbows, had dinner, and bumped uglies on the dance floor, with plenty of athletes that some would consider celebrities. This is only relevant because it puts what comes next in context. Not one of those individuals had an impact on me like this.
By my estimation, I've had 3 celebrity encounters in my life that are truly noteworthy. Here goes:
1). Last summer the moms and I became addicted to a show on HGTV called Design Stars. I don't watch a lot of HGTV, but some friends of mine told me that they did boot camp with a guy that was on the show. This peaked my interest. So, I watched. I became hooked, as did the moms and we looked forward to those nights when the show aired. We'd critique the designs and the designers, we watched faithfully every week. About a month after the season ended the family was shopping at Sam's Club. The hubs and I went our separate ways (divide and conquer in stores, ya'll) and when we met back at the check out lane the hubs says, "Jason is here." Me: "WHO?" Him: "Jason from that design show." Me: "No, effin way! Where?" Him: "Back by the frozen." Me: "I have to see him. Where's my camera." Him: Are you serious? Me: "I think I might pass out."
Here he is: Jason from HGTV So, I went back and I saw him and I so badly wanted to walk up to him and say, "GIRL! I loved you on that show!" But, I couldn't because I was star struck, and my heart was palpitating, and I really don't know why. I told my story to my girlfriends who do boot camp with Jason, and I heard that he would have been thrilled (and ego boosted) had I actually had the nerve to talk to him, and just maybe I will the next time I see him out and about.
2). My 2nd encounter with a celebrity happened just a few weeks back at Disney World. The moms, Cam and I were waiting in line to order our lunch at the Starlight Cafe in Tomorrowland. When suddenly, walking directly toward me (from the counter, right next to me, the only way he could possibly go) I saw him. I shout, in near hysteria, "OH MY GAWD THAT IS DANNY GOKEY!" The moms just looks at me blankly, "who?" At this point my palms begin to sweat, my face reddens, and he looks directly at me. He smiles, he bites his bottom lip (flattered I guess) and then shoots me a look that said, "please lady, shut up, and don't make a scene." And then he was gone. So, I repeat myself to the moms, I explain who he is, all the while noticing that my hands are shaking and people are looking at me. It took me a few minutes to gain my composure. So, I text the hubs, and his response was, "sorry, babe. but that is really sad. he isn't even that famous." So, over the next several hours, the thought creeps in....what if that wasn't him, and it was just some schmuck that looks like Danny Gokey. What a terrible fool I am, if that is the case. So, when we get home I look at his Twitter, and he was at Disney that day, and I did see Danny Gokey, and he was litterly close enough for me to touch him. Not that I was a huge fan, but there are people that are, and who knows where this country music thang will take him. Either way you shake it, I was excited.
3). Then, there is this girl that has this awesome blog that I read daily. I admire the way she writes, her humor, and how candid she is about her life. Well, she visited my little ole blah blog the other day, and sent me over the moon! I think I love her, and if you haven't read her piece, well, you should, cause you just might fall in love with Blair too.
So, there they are...if I had to rank them, I'd say the last celebrity encounter really made my day! Oh, and maybe I need to work on the whole celebrity Star Struck thing....I mean, god forbid I actually come face to face with Kenny Chesney, or Jennifer Nettles, or that guy that plays Sheldon on Big Bang Theory, I would probably pass out. Nope. I know I would.
Friday, April 23, 2010
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Here goes (and in complete random-ness):
1). Health. Today, as I type this, everyone is healthy. Last week, Chloe had a phantom bout of diarrhea that I swear to bejeezus only happens at school and never at home, but today she is healthy, and we are all healthy and I just gotta appreciate that. With 2 kids, these days are rare!
2). My momma's banana bread recipe. Nothing can put a smile on the hubs face like fresh baked banana bread. I indulged him the other night, and it felt good, to make him happy. To do something for him, and then to sit down to watch 24 together and taste a piece of my childhood. I hope that my kids end up having memories of fresh banana bread in the oven and the taste of it on their lips like I do. It brings me home every time.
3). The hubs, who is home more often than he's not, does more than his share of the housework, cooks, does kid crap, and is generally pleasant to be around. I may not thank him everyday, but I definitely am thankful that he is my partner in this chaos.
4). My sweet baby Chloe who looks more and more like her daddy everyday. As she took her 1st steps last week, she reminded me just how fleeting infancy is, and just how precious these days are. I am thankful that I get to wear the mommy hat and that I got to be there to witness her very first steps.
5). The Park. Daily. It saves me. The laughter, the gab, the fresh air, the good times, the memories.
6). My kick azz camera and the photos that it takes with very little skill on my part. I've found a hobby!
7). Friends. Like these. The kind that you have known since you can remember remembering and the kind that know you deeper than anyone else in the world. The kind of friends that you don't talk to often but you never miss a beat. The kind that listen, the kind that mostly gab away, and the kind that you miss when they are gone. Ya'll are irreplaceable!
8). Emotion. Like this. The ability to cry, to empathize, to not-build walls. The ability to be genuine, wear my heart on my sleeve and not regret it. The ability to hug and comfort. I hope that this part of me never changes, and that my girls inherit it.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
I'll shad up now and leave you to your viewing....
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
So, a piece of me was kinda hoping that Camdyn was confused about "the boy's" name. Since Cam's middle name is Elizabeth, I was sorta hoping that's where the name came from. So, I ask the child "What's your name?" HER response, of course, Elizabeth. So, it's official Elizabeth is a girl, and our girls are still convinced that she is a boy.
Eventually, Elizabeth gets called home for dinner and Camdyn was...um....devastated. Yeah, I guess that is the right word. She began to sulk around the park and then insisted that we wait for her to return. She said, "I really miss him." So, Becky and I spent a good few minutes trying to convince both Madie & Cam that Elizabeth is in fact a little girl, just like they are. They weren't buying it and insisted that she is a boy. Now, when I press further and ask Cam why she thinks she is a boy, she simply says, "he just is."
Elizabeth did manage to make it back to the park before we left, and Camdyn ran to her at the fence like she was her long lost love. The only thing missing was the St. Elmos Fire soundtrack. I mean, look at the expression on her face in that picture! She's crushin hard, and for a girl! So, they played a little while longer, and we told Elizbeth that we come to the park at the same time every night and maybe we'll see her tomorrow. She does seem like a nice child, with maybe a not so nice home life, and it's wonderful that they all play so nicely together. I just hope that we can convince our girls that she is a she so that no one's feelings get hurt ::gets on knees to say a prayer::
It's about 5 pm on Tuesday, April 13th. As I round the corner to Chloe's classroom, I hear all of these adorable baby squeals. It took me a moment to decipher, are these happy noises or angry noises? Okay, she's happy. So, I enter the classroom and it takes a moment for me to spot her little bald head. There she is! She is standing up and holding on to the toy shelf. So, I say, "Hi! Miss Belle!" She squawks with delight and begins to creep down the shelf as fast as she can. Now, I decided I would make her come to me, so I stop and squat just a few feet from the corner of the shelf. I hold out my hands, and before I know it, she is walking! Straight to me! With arms out to the side for balance, and legs spread out as far as they can be! I squeal with giddiness, as does Chloe, and her teacher. I asked, "has she been doing this all day?" Nope. Those were really her first steps! Ahhhh.
Chloe took her first steps in the adorable Minnie Mouse onesie that we bought her at Disney. On the front, there is a picture of Minnie and the words "Twinkle Toes." How fitting. So, although Chloe's 1st steps did not happen in the bathroom, next to the bathtub, they did happen in this little outfit, and I did get them on video later that night. For some strange reason blogger won't let me upload it, I'll keep trying.
As an update: This past weekend Chloe began taking steps to nowhere. She would sit in the adorable PBK chair that Gramma gave to her, then she would stand up, and she would just walk off in the direction of no one. No, coaxing, or googling needed. It's so strange to watch this petite little thing set off on 2 tiny baby legs. Toddlerhood is really just around the corner.
Sunday, April 18, 2010
We arrived last Friday and headed for Downtown Disney. Cam loves this part of the trip. Eating, Shopping, plenty of things to see, and it's all free (well, except for the eating and shopping part). So, we ate at T-Rex, because Camdyn LOVES Dinos and she made a pink build-a-dino (think Build-a-Bear, but with dinos) and then we shopped. We bought Chloe the cutest little Minnie Mouse onsie (you'll see it later) and Camdyn bought an Ariel shirt, and then we headed to the movies. The theater at Pleasure Island houses 20, or is it 25 movies theaters, and it is HUGE and pricey ($40 for 3 tix), but we sucked it up, cause this is a special trip, and saw How To Train your Dragon! It was an awesome movie! A little scary for Cam at first, but then when she saw that the Dragons were really nice, she fell in love with it! After the movie, we grabbed some chocolate covered strawberries, and then headed for the hotel!
We stayed at Mike Ditka's Runaway Beach Club and it's my most favoriestest places to stay in Orlando. Think, your own private 1,2, or 3 bedroom condo, complete with granite kitchen, upgraded bathrooms, and SPACE! Oh, and did I mention it's CHEAP. I've paid as little as $89 a night, this time it was more like $129 (spring break season) but it's so worth every penny. So, we slept 3 deep in the king sized bed, and woke up ready to tackle the Magic Kingdom!
Here we are waiting in line, enjoying the Dumbo Ride, and the Carousel, and then, of course nap time! This was an oddity this time around. Usually, we have to walk Cam in circles in the stroller to get her to nap. This time, we just told her to rest her eyes and BAM! 45 min nap! SCORE. (yes, I realize I have the same pic of me and Cam in this post twice...my memory is not what it used to be). Camdyn also rode her first roller coaster this time around and she LOVED it. She wanted to go again, and again, and again, and again!
For the first time, Camdyn met Ariel! She looked so cute with her and it was definitely a highlight for her. In the last picture, Gramma and Cam watch the Celebration Parade. It was a fantastic little trip and actually an excellent day to do Disney. The spring breakers must have been headed home that Saturday, because we were blessed with relatively short lines and light crowds. WHOO HOO!
I'm so grateful that we got to do the Disney Thing this year and that Gramma got to enjoy the Magic from a child's view this year!
Friday, April 16, 2010
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Here's the shot:
Now, allow me to ramble on about what I die for in this picture. In my humble opinion, the girls look like they should be on a page of a JC Penny catalog. If only Cam wasn't missing a tooth, and didn't have that silly crown on her head, they would look like they had some serious model potential. I mean, no one asked them to pose like this. All Becky said was, "get together so I can take a picture of you guys in your matching skirts." (Thanks for the skirt, Becky. It reminds me how long it's been since we bought the girls matching anything. Love it, and Love these days)The girls posed by themselves and look so sweet I want to eat them up like fresh baked chocolate chip cookies.
In this picture, I see 2 little girls that might as well be sisters. They play well together, mostly, usually, some of the time, and they fight together like only sisters can while still seriously loving the C-R-A-P outta each other. They are besties and worsties all at the same time, and I love it, and Madie's mother, and all that these two little girls have done together over the past 2 1/2 years. I'm seriously going to have issues when they both tote off to different elementary schools (excuse me for depressing myself momentarily).
So, then, I give you these pics. Also taken by Becky:
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
On this particular evening, we were out by the pond feeding bread to the turtles and then Chris said to me, "distract the kids while I get in the pool." So, he sneaks off, puts his swimmies on and gets in the pool. Suddenly, I say, "Camdyn! There is a giant turtle in our pool!" She runs over to the lanai with the greatest concern, peers through the screen, and then shouts, "It's not a turtle! It's DAAAADDDY!" That was quickly followed by a few "I wanna swim(s)" and she was stripping her clothes off before I could even bring her suit out of the house.
Now Chloe is no dummy, and she wants to do what her sissy does, so she started squawking for some swim time too. Luckily, daddy can handle them both in the water!
This summer is really going to be a ton of fun!
Don't you just love this picture of Gramma! I think she should use it for her FB profile pic, cause it is that good. And, Gramma is cool like that. I shot this using my zoom lens that I received as a Xmas gift from the hubs. It's been patiently waiting in my camera bag for months, and I decided to give it a try. I think I really like this piece of glass, although I'm dying for a telephoto lens with a wide aperture (Note to Hubs - Mother's Day is comin' up)!
Camdyn works on her kicks and her scoops. That missin' tooth still cracks me up. She really does look like she is 6 instead of 4.
So, this zoom lens has a bit wider aperture than my stock lens does, and it does a better job blurring out the distractions in the background. Did I just refer to hubs as a distraction? Why, Yes, I did! And, he totally is, and on so many levels, and in an awesomely good way!
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
The He-She story goes like this:
It's Tuesday, April 6th, and we bring the kiddos to the park as usual after school. This week we are in the company of my mom (Gramma) who is visiting us from "The North." The girls play, the mommas gab, and it's generally a great time. On this particular day, there were some new faces at the park and Camdyn began to take a liking to a little boy. He let her play with his dinosaur, and showed her his helicopter toy, and even let her watch his dinosaur for him when he went to the restroom. This is where I wish I could insert a picture of said child right here. The boy is older, probably 8 or 9 years old, and wearing jeans, a brightly colored shirt, small tinted oval glasses, and has blonde hair fashioned in either a mullet, or a 70's style feathered arrangement. I can't tell, and therefore the scrutiny, the boy is a boy, right? Kinda hard to tell.
So, we leave the park that day and Camdyn exclaims, "I just love that boy. I love that boy. I want that boy to come and play at my house!" Okay, awesome, that she doesn't think this boy is "gross" and that she was playing nicely with a much older child, but odd. This child is odd, or maybe it's the child's family is odd. His sister was there too, much older (say 12/14) a tad overweight is an understatement and playing with a peculiar looking giant stuffed Easter Bunny (even odder).
Now, it's the next day. We decide to have a picnic on the ball fields complete with a blanket and McD's happy meals for the chitlins (that's children, stay with me). We play for over an hour, and just when it is about time to leave, Camdyn runs up to us yelling, "MY BOY IS HERE! MY BOY IS HERE!" I look over at the fence running down the 1st base line and sure enough, there is the boy! Egads. Camdyn and the boy immediately begin playing in the dirt, and the mommas start to wonder again, is this a boy? Today, Boy is sporting boot cut jeans and is holding a stuffed unicorn, and a stuffed Lion with a bow in it's hair. Still wearing, the tiny tinted glasses and blonde mullet. Is this a he or a she? Do boys play with unicorns? So, I give Camdyn the 2 minute warning and as we are packing up to head to the car, I ask Camdyn, "Cam, what is your new friend's name?" [now, I wanted to be careful not to lead her in a direction of male or female because I wanted her to tell me herself." Her response: I dunno. Pause. Pause. Pause. HE said HIS name is Elizabeth!
I should mention that I drank a large sweet tea during our picnic, because it about ended up in my pants the moment that name flew out of her mouth. I mean, I was seriously holding on to myself, squeezing my knees together, and dancing around like a preschooler in the bathroom. Elizabeth! HIS name is ELIZABETH! I guess that sorta answers the question. Now, how do I convince a 4 year old that her new love is really a girl?
Friday, April 9, 2010
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
The Easter Bunny visited and hid baskets for the girls, and he also hid 50 eggs around our yard. Camdyn had a blast on her egg hunt, and even helped Chloe collect all of her eggs.
Chloe's eggs were in the shape of animals, so that we could tell them apart. Camdyn collected them all for her and then placed them in Chloe's basket. At the end of the hunt, Camdyn looked at her basket and then at Chloe's basket and said, "Mama the Easter Bunny didn't leave Chloe enough eggs. I have too many and she just has a little." I told her that is because Chloe is little. So, cute that she was upset that Chloe didn't have as many as she did. What a great big sister!
I originally purchased them to go with the girls' Chargers Football gear, but I thought they worked okay with the Easter ensemble too! Camdyn wore hers to church and then traded it for the pink flower after nap time - oye.
Okay, so I'm a busy mama, and I didn't have the time to crop out my foot. But, the picture is still adorable. If only Camdyn had chosen a different hair bow/flower. Freedom of expression, right? She did hold up matching/coordinating eggs, though.