Friday, December 29, 2006

It isn't often that a 60* December day in STL occurs (despite what my nephew is believing these days) so I suggested we go to the zoo. I had one taker, my 7 year old niece Chloe.

I really enjoyed our special afternoon together--Chloe and Auntie. We walked through the Rivers Edge; saw the elephants. Visited the puffins and penguins. Saw the gorillas. Drank a Coca~Cola. Looked for ice cream with no luck. Kept missing the train everytime we wanted to ride. Saw a real STL cardinal fluttering near the big cats. Decided the loose tooth was so bothersome "Auntie needs to pull it". So I did--a lost tooth in the middle of the zoo deserved a phone call to mom to alert her (and the tooth fairy) of this exciting news. Saw the zebras, the camels and couple of prairie dogs. All the while Chloe instructed me when and what to snap pictures of with my new camera. It was a great day! Just me and little Chloe.

Ich liebe Chloe!

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Christmas was wonderful, filling in so many ways--family, friends, food (my Cocoa Spiced Pork was the hit of the season), presents, presents and presents, games galore. It passes all to quickly.

I don't know what seems more chaotic, all the preparation of Christmas or when my sister arrives from Michigan for a four day visit? My sister in from Michigan!

God bless all the mothers of the world who have more than three children. I think for the last 12 hours I have been trailing behind five kids (Alee is out of town) with my dust buster in hand catching cookie crumbs--no that is my sister's cookie crumbs. There are pillows and blankets everywhere. Suitcases. The fridge is overflowing even more now with prime rib and turkey that traveled all the way from Detroit just to be eaten (so not to spoil in waste).

Chloe, my youngest niece requested a bubble bath in my jet tub. Bubbles almost suffocated the poor child, but she loved it. Uli has found feast in the hair of her American Girl dolls; which leaves me chasing the puppy in circles.

It is so gorgeous here today I sent the kids outdoors to play. I heard my nephew say "we don't need coats in STL they have two seasons spring and summer". Although a total incorrect assumption, spoken like a true Michigander--yikes say it isn't so!

Alee and Kevin arrived safely in Bayou La Batre, Alabama to rehab Katrina houses.

I believe rest and relaxation will come January 3 when my girls are back in school!

For all the cooks out there here is the pork recipe:

Seared Pork Tenderloin w/ Cocoa Spice Rub

1 T whole white peppercorns
1 T whole coriander
4 1/2 T cinnamon
2 t. nutmeg
1 t. ground cloves
3 1/2 T unsweetened cocoa powder
4 T sea salt
2-2 lb. pork tenderloins
2 T olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 In a medium saucepan over med heat, toast peppercorns and coriander seeds until they begin to pop. Remove from heat and grind to a fine powder in a spice mill or coffee grinder (I use a chopper). Mix the ground pepper and coriander w/ remaining spices, cocoa and salt.

Trim the pork tenderloins of fat and silver skin. Rub w/a generous amount of the rub. Heat the olive oil over med heat in a large sauté pan. Sear all sides of the tenderloins until a rich brown color is achieved, about 2 min. per side. Remove from pan and finish in the oven for about 10 min or until cooked thru.

Let the tenderloins rest out of the oven for at least 10 min. before slicing. Extra rub will keep for up to 3 months in an airtight container.

Notes: This makes a lot of rub but I like to keep it on hand because once it is made the most time consuming part is done. I have also used black peppercorns and don't see any problem w/it. I have found that 10 min. is not enough to cook the meat thru. I use a meat thermometer and take them out when it reads 160, let it rest, and it is usually done perfectly.

Friday, December 22, 2006

In an effort to bolster my Christmas cheer I have been sampling (over the last two days) the cocktails I will be serving at the multiple family gatherings (I am hosting) this weekend.

First, the pomegranate martini should only be drank with a full stomach of food--whoaaaa nelly it got me when I was not expecting. Tasty though, very tasty!

1/2 oz. Pomegranate Schnapps
1 oz citrus vodka
splash of sprite or lemonade
shake and pour in chilled martini glass

Tonight I am being held hostage in the kitchen-- first by need, second by the high school Christmas party that is happening in my downstairs rec room, so I figured good time to sample cocktail number two, the White Christmas (with 58* Midwestern winter temperatures this is as white as Christmas is going to get). My dear friend Lucy's chocolate chunk pecan cookie bars are turning out to be a wonderful compliment to my "White Christmas".

This sweet cocktail can be used as a dessert, too. Though similar to regular eggnog, the white chocolate liqueur makes this drink even more decadent. Serve with cookies or a simple dark chocolate poundcake for a rich ending to the evening (or in my case the beginning, middle and end).

4 ounces eggnog (homemade or commercially prepared) 1/2 ounce white chocolate liqueur 1 ounce Southern Comfort
Directions: Mix all the ingredients and serve straight up in a snifter.
Servings: 1 cocktail.

So I raise my glass to all my family and friends wishing you all a blessed and Merry Christmas!

Alee, Liz and Mary's party was a success. Let me just say at the high school parties I went to there was never food available! My ole' high school friend came over tonight to keep me company-- we decided we should have been in the band they have respectable parties with not only a smorgasborg of food but, games, karokee, poker, Twister, etc, etc...
Everything is cleaned up, at nearly 1am I am crawling into my bed to wake in the morning to holiday chores.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Pardon the interruption in MY LIFE... I will be cleaning Maddi's bedroom all day (hopefully I will finish today).

So far, in the closest, I have found last year's Hershey chocolate Santa. Mmmmm should be be pretty tasty now-- if not the festive wrapper is in synch with the season.

I regret to inform Maddi last spring break project-- cutting a magazine in confetti size pieces of paper has gone to the trash. The jewelry box that held it once again holds jewelry.

The gold balloon hiding in the pillow sham is now free and ready to celebrate New Years.

The neon green sock you never could find well... it has been rescued from the depth of the closest, along with so many other items it is not worth listing them all. Imagine wearing two green socks?

I am doing this task, monumental task alone to preserve my Joan Crawford Mommy Dearest persona for another more deserving occasion.


Brief intermission in the cleaning to retrieve Maddi from the 8th grade and mossy on down to the doctor to be diagnosed with what is sure to become bronchitis if not for the administered antibiotics.


Sunday, December 17, 2006

If you could go back in time and relive certain days would you? I would.

I would relive the days of the birth of each of my daughters.

That feeling, that rush of a love like no other--unconditional love. To hold there tiny sweet naive beings in my arms. To trace there petite lips with my finger, then leaning forward to tenderly kiss my baby girl(s). The fingers, the toes, to stroke the hair (well Maddi's hair since she was born with a mop of it)...

Why all this reflection? Maddi turned 14 today. In the blink of an eye time has raced forward, not allowing me soak in every moment and every cherished memory of my "baby girl".

Happy Birthday Maddi, I love you much!!!!!

Side Note: the portion of Maddi's birth I would change is having the knowledge that whatever you scream out in those birthing rooms transcends through the entire hospital--screaming out "SH*%, SON-OF-A-B*^(#@ this hurts" for all to hear, well I would be glad not to have that on moment recorded on a home DVD.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Pass the hand lotion...

Scrubbing the house down with bleach (in an attempt to pass off the idea that my house is always near white glove testing quality clean) can really suck all the moisture from the skin.

Oh Jo your white counters look fabulous, however do you keep them so white? But you know only a moran would have white kitchen counters.

But I am hoping, like last year, my sister-in-law walks into my house on Christmas Day for our festive family gathering, and says "who does your cleaning"--to which I will once again reply (smiling while snickering under neath) "well I do it all!"

... And then I will smile once more knowing the dust and dirt will begin reappearing the next day.

Now, if you would pass that lotion again...

Thursday, December 14, 2006

It is our tradition that the wisemen travel the house till they reach the navity on Christmas Eve night--mode of transportation, the girls feet.

When our Christmas baking commenced last Saturday, in marched the three wisemen. Baking ceased--finally-- last night and the wisemen can't seem to bring themselves to travel out of the kitchen.

What is the reason...The peanut kiss cookies? The rolo cookies? My grandma's toffee squares? Or is it my grandma's potato chip cookies? Could it be grandma's Christmas holly cookies (they are the girls favorite, my brother's too)? I know, the spritz? Maybe it is the ordinary chocolate chunk or oatmeal raisin cookies that keep these wise guys hanging out, hovering over the platter of cookies.

What ever the reason I think I will let them know it is time to be moving on...

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

I have been wanting, waiting for nearly 15 years for this...

I can now say I HAVE A NEW MAILBOX! (pardon me while I do my happy dance)

It is the most beautiful thing, in its hue of bronze with it artistic post-- curved and straight lines. No more chewed bubble gum to hold the red flag up for a mail pick up. No more digging around in the snow to find the flag after the pick up. No more beating the rust lose to free the letters (and bills) from it fifteen layers of black paint (applied lovingly in an effort to resurrect it for yet another year). She is so beautiful, my new mailbox.

...subconsciously we are thinking this mailbox will cause our beloved mailman to postpone his retirement.

But in the meantime she is open for business and accepting Christmas cards.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Love and marriage, love and marriage
Go together like a horse and carriage

Let me just tell you what doesn't go together--
the spouse and a trip to the grocery store!

I don't know what I was thinking... I must have totally lost all sense of conscienceness when I spoke the words, "honey do you want to come to the grocery store with me"?

A few shopping rules I should have laid out before we entered Dierberg's:
  • I don't do Hamburger Helper (even if you love it).
  • I don't do Chef Boyardee Raviolli (it is not really tomato sauce).
  • I don't do pizza rolls (no matter how much the girls like these processed morsels of nasty being passed off as a bite sized stuffed pizza) two weeks in a row.

    I considered taking his life, claiming death of natural causes in isle 4A-- the soup isle-- when the loving spouse tried to inform me he would "teach me how to shop" by buying the family size can of Campbell's Bean and Bacon soup. Then I realized better alive than dead; we need his paycheck to buy his over sized can of bean soup. Oh Jo be really cruel by withholding his doses of Bean-o prior to the consumption of his mansized can of bean soup, gas pains honey that is a simple pay back for the hell of shopping with your spouse.

    Then the spouse becomes the traveling man somewhere between the deli and the dairy case (I once left him at the store during our first year of marriage for that exact reason).

    When we got to the Party Center isle aka the booze isle I took possession of a bottle of citrus vodka and he took a hold of a bottle of whiskey. I profess I needed it more than he!

    As we were leaving the grocery store-- with not one cart but two (because Frank the 70 year old bag boy convinced the aggravating spousal shopping partner that we need not smash the canned veggies at the bottom of the cart)-- an acquaintance from the kid's school stops in the parking lot rolls down her window and yells out "those who shop together stay together", then she roared in laughter, rolled up the window and drove away.

    That was all the affirmation I needed to know that I in fact lost my mind for a brief moment today. Now someone kick me in the ass and bring me back!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

It goes like this...

Dear Proctor and Gamble
It seems I am in need of buying another share of stock--preferably in feminant products. You see there is a new "woman" in our house today...

Poor Kevin I think he will begin spending more and more time in the basement.

As for me, my once personal supply of product will be raided by yet another of my off spring-- who will neglect to say they need there own supply restocked.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Well it was that time of year again yesterday, the Christmas card photo shoot. Despite the carols that filled the air of the house and the hot milk laced with chocolate powder and minimarshmallows-- Alee summed it up perfectly "our annual dysfunctional Christmas card photo shoot".

I don't know what it is about asking the girls to humor me with a snapping of about 45 photos in long sleeves t-shirts and hats/scarves/ear muffs on an ice covered lawn (for a truly inspired holiday card) with temperatures in the teens and gusting winds but, it was an argument before we let the chilled air sting our faces.

M:"I don't have a t-shirt like that and I am not wearing the one with a fur trim at the neck"

J: "Maddi it is sure to add pizazz to the picture. Oh and babe no Violet Incredible hair, I want to see both your eyes, none of that bang draped across the face hiding the right eye "

M: I'm not wearing that, I want to look like everyone else and... I AM NOT VIOLET INCREDIBLE Stoppppppp!

frustration just setting in

J: Demi let's curl your hair, just the front pieces as no one will see the back of your head in the photo

D: I told you I wanted my hair cut before we took Christmas card pictures

J: Demi I tried there was no available appointments, just work with me babe, please...

in her usual state of the last 12 years of Christmas card pictures she is preparing to aggravate and be difficult

J: flailing the curling iron in air Demi knock it off GET OVER HERE NOW! We are curling the hair!! (forget I asked her to apply chapstick to her carpet fur lips)

A: hurry guys my hair looks really good, oh I'm not wearing a hat it will ruin my hair

now you know I am at the whatever point

J: Demi come on let's curl the hair (in the meantime Maddi is still carrying on about the solid color t-shirt she says doesn't own and her hair)

M: I'm gonna wear my burglar black stocking cap

J: NO! NO-NO-NO!!!!

Then it happened, I lost it! I picked up a box of Kleenex and I chucked against the wall. I had a temper tamtrum, a grown woman breaking down over assembling her off spring in coordinating fashion and styled hair for a stinking picture that 90% of the receivers will chuck in the trash can come January 1 never to appreciate the full intensity it took to captures that one great shot.

Since it was a dysfunctional experience I figured, as long as we are at it lets add the puppy to the picture (to heighten the frustration). Then to really cap things off Maddi decided she needed to be Audrey Hepburn in her black pointed toe kitten heal pumps adorning her bare feet--forget that she'll be walking on a sheet of ice and no one will see (most likely) her feet in the picture.

It took three rounds (breaks taken warming by the fire to thaw while Kevin and I viewed the taken photos) to capture what we think is the perfect picture worthy of the Avery Family 2006 Christmas card.

Round three Alee had this "brilliant" idea that they all climb the fence of our neighbor and sit atop his fallen tree (that came crashing at our fence line in the storm nearly missing the power lines). So there the girls were scaling the fence and popping up on the [half] large tree trunk, that is until Maddi tried. Let's just say trying to be Audrey Hepburn in the feet and fence hopping don't mix. Nor did it work to well climbing the tree. Maddi gave herself a chain link enema~ouch! It wasn't until the end of my tyring like hell to be "Anne Leibovitz" that Maddi began to cry, a nearly 14 year old chilled to the bone girl dying at how she was going to get off the tree now and back over the fence in those dam shoes.

And there have it what we think could be the picture perfect Christmas 2006 photo for our card! Which one? Watch for the results in your mailbox.

Friday, December 01, 2006

We got our snow day alright, or do we refer to this as an ice day? You decide.

Well considering the conditions I should probably head to the back yard and work on my triple salchow and my lutz. I would like to impress everyone at the ice rink this year.

A day like today calls for a pipping hot cup of cocoa.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Random things that no one probably gives a shit to know, but I'm saying them anyway...

1. I watch the Angry Beavers in the morning, and I enjoy this silly cartoon quite a bit.

2. I have a thing about chairs not pushed back under the table.

3. I love Barry Manilow, yep I am a "Fanilow" (it was my first concert 8th grade front row floor at the Checkerdome--I just aged myself aaahhhh). I am enjoying listening to Barry sing to me "Because It's Christmas".

4. I've been known to tell my kids a white lie every now and then, like today (Kevin and I told Demi it cost $56 in parts to fix the dishwasher she broke on Tuesday, when really it just needed Kevin's fix it talent.)

5. I make (almost) all the same Christmas cookies my Grandma made so I feel like I am kid again celebrating the holiday in Chicago--the memories of childhood.

6. I want a digital meat thermometer for my Christmas gift from my husband. I am such a simple girl.

7. I am going to order an all Christmas trivia game called Tis' the Season on eBay.

8. Today is my brother's 36th birthday and my nephew's 28th birthday. Okay now I really feel old!!

9. I have been in my PJ's all day, because that is what one should do when a winter storm rolls in town. Quick Jodi get to the store for the ritual buying of bread and milk (dam didn't go now the kids will have to have water or grapefruit juice on there Fruit Loops)

10. My girls think because they watch America's Next Top Model that having a photo shoot in the icy back yard wearing a swim suit makes them somehow of sound mind (Kevin said "let'm they'll realize how stupid it is fast"), I call it absolutely insane!

11. So I've been told if you wear your PJ bottoms inside out to bed you are guarenteed a snowday when you wake...I will instruct all my family to reverse there bottoms tonight I want a rest from packing lunches at 530am.

12. Last night on PBS I watched the tribute to James Taylor and sang my heart out in the great room, all alone.

13. I never blog about Alee and her boyfriend even when I have something really funny I want to blog--maybe someday.

14. PMS means I get sick to my stomach, I have headaches and insomnia--is that PMS or perimenapausal? Crap I am getting old aren't I! Hell I'll debate it with myself again at 4am when I wake.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Thank goodness each day starts anew, a fresh start from the day before.

Yesterday as I lay in bed waiting to grace the world I hear a crash from the kitchen. I assumed Demi managed to break a cereal bowl. Not so. It was Kevin's grandmother pedestal cake plate with the dome lid. It was on top of the refrigerator layered with fresh pumpkin bread that Demi desired for her morning fuel.

I spent the day with dust buster in hand capturing shards and slivers of glass.

Then come evening Demi managed to ignore me again and again and again when instructed to help Maddi empty the dish washer. When she finally walked into the kitchen she managed to fall on the dishwasher door breaking it.

Now I hope Kevin in all his fix it talent and tools will be able to resurrect my [new] dish washer. In the mean time he is mad beyond words!

It just hasn't been Demi's week (which turns into hasn't been my week)... And it is only Wednesday morning.

Tell me things will get better from here on out? Please! Or Demi will just have to stay in bed this morning.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

All the Christmas trees are up and twinkling--Great Room, rec room, kids bedrooms...

The lights are on the house--no wreaths on the windows yet--tomorrow, I promise.

Just a few presents left to purchase, and 70% of my gifts are wrapped (I ran out of tape or I would have kept on).

I think I may be classified as sick?

I got an unexpected bonus today, one of which I did NOT need! It was lunch and I was out buying gift cards when I thought aaahhhhh a Culver's butter burger would be tasty , so I treated myself to a [portion controlled] kids meal. Reaching into the bag after I drove away to find I had the wrong meal, so much for portion control it was an all out fat feast, I had the fully loaded double cheese butter burger with fries. I truly feel sorry for the poor bastard behind me who was starving for a man size meal and he got a kiddie portion of celluloid inducing goodness.

To that I say "tis the season!

Monday, November 27, 2006

Is it possible I ask to clone human and animal into one being? Well I believe these two lovely creatures were, that or it is a "Freaky Friday" on a georgous late November Monday.

I let the dog out for a quick potty break before heading out to the grocery store. Just like Demi, Uli wouldn't come when I called. When I chased Uli explaining that I needed to get to the store (I know I was talking to a puppy) she ran from me, just like Demi, and I could not catch her.

So I ask is it possible to clone human and animal into one being.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Much to be thankful for this year: my family, eye sight, raked up leaves--I however will put near the top of the list the fact that my mother-in-law and her husband exceeded there customary three hours of giving to holiday togetherness. For that I am thankful beyond an expression of words.

The turkey was--as usual--perfect. Brining the bird is the only way a turkey should be prepared--moist and juicy. My gravy--in my humble opinion--was fantastic, fresh thyme, oh yes that is my secret. Since the turkey was prepared "Eldon Brown" style it was only befitting that this years stuffing (prepared by George) was a recipe by Paula Dean. Thanks-giving to the Food Network!

As dinner ended and we were all stuffed to the gills wondering who would desire to tackle the dishes, Dan stood clinked his glass and made an announcement "this year Uncle Les will be doing the dishes"--we all laughed because Uncle Les is a quadriplegic. I suppose Dan was making a point that no one of sound body was up for the dishes. But like a good family does we all (well the women) waddled to the kitchen and knocked it out. A clean kitchen post feasting is a rather glorious feeling. While the men folded up the tables and made space in the great room for an evening of trivia, "The 80's Edition".

It wasn't until we had all begun consuming pie that Gee-Gee (great grandma) came to realize all the questions being asked were geared around the 1980's, that was about an hour in the rattling of the brains and even then her tired mind helped my (our) team little. My sister-in-law was knocking back the cranberry and vodka drinks while I hit the wine bottle and the kids were getting sauced on kiddie cocktails and shots of Ready-Whip. Once the party broke up the shopping ads came out and we serious "Black Friday" shoppers started to course out our plans of action.

It was almost like a cruel joke when Kevin's alarm went off at 5am on Friday so he could get to work because--crime knows no holiday. I too stumbled from the bed masked my under eye bags and headed out the door with all the other fools in the shopping frenzy mode.

Now it is just a matter of getting the Christmas trees up. Then it certainly will feel like Christmas is upon us.

Post note: next year serve up enemas between dinner and dessert.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

I had one of those moments last Sunday when I thought my opinion was actually heard--turns out it wasn't.

Last Sunday when I went to pick Alee up from FIRE (HS youth group) our adorable female minister starting asking the kids how they felt about the new Crossover Worship service we have adopted [for late service]--I prefer to reference as rock-n-roll Sunday; a style of worship I will need to adjust to and learn to accept that change is sometimes a good thing for the youth seeking and searching. I decided this was the moment I wanted my voice to be heard, what better place than in God's house, right?

So I did.

I spoke loudly and proclaimed the flat bread they served for communion was HORRIBLE! I wanted to say "sucks" but I held my tongue, a delightfully honest teen gladly offered up the "sucks"--which was more acceptable somehow from a teen's mouth. I told of how it tastes like play dough, left me wanting to spit out the "body of Christ" into that stray napkin floating in my purse, I was chewing it still as the benediction was read and at that left me unfilled.

The subject of the communion host was bounced around in a positive discussion format; leaving me to think this morning as I rock-n-rolled in the name of God that I would receive my soul cleansing filling (usual) wafer. WRONG! It was that darn nasty play dough bread. So you know what I did...I took hold of the communion chalice with my hands helping to tip the red wine, the "blood of Christ" at a chugging angle offering myself a larger gulp to moisten and wash it down. Breathalyzer tests will be administered next Sunday at the door before exiting the church.

I'm thinking an intervention with the help of Martin Luther is in need here.

As I left church our adorable female minister grabbed me with a heart felt hug and whispered in my ear, "we are working on the bread, trust me, give us a little time".

I believe I even offered to bake bread-- which I have never done without the use of my very ignored bread maker I got for Christmas back in 1995. But for me to feel cleansed, fulfilled in the "body of Christ" I will learn!

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Don't you wish as a mom the manuals we drew up for ourselves (in our imaginations of course) on how are how children would be in life would actually be how it was?

But it sure isn't; it is a journey beyond anyones greatest vision.

But with all the trials and tribulations it brings it is still without a doubt the best non-paying job in the whole wide world!

I love my girls and I love being a mom, even to teenagers!!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Things I came to realize this week:

1. I had so many shoes I didn't need that purging them from my closest has the possibility of shoeing half of China.

2. Ordering a Happy Meal @ 3pm pretty much guarantees a hot hamburger and crispy fries.

3. Raking leaves all afternoon does not assure that an hour later I appeared to have done any hard labor at all.

4. Maddi taking a shower with her (new) contacts in pretty much is a bargain for an all night emotional break down--and a celebration when she wakes in the morning to find them lodged under her eyelids.

5. I have no problem telling Alee's boyfriend (in a truthful but fun cool mom manner) what my expectations are--no hickeys, no one handed bra back release and never cross the thresh hold of the doorway into her bedroom. All of which he respectfully abides by. Honestly, we like the boyfriend (a first at our house) very much--nice good kid!

6. Reading my nieces blog, that my nephew AF Cpt. Charley is flying around President Bush's entourage. A vote was taken at our house, we all miss Charley!

7. Three days of grayness can cause SAD, where I find great pleasure in flopping on the couch with an occasional nap or two or three.

8. I could care less anymore if I see another episode of this season's Survivor--I am burned out on reality TV (except America's Next Top Model and Project Runway)!

9. Watching the movie Da Vinci Code was as bad for me as trying to read the book.

10. If Alee bakes cupcakes for no particular reason I do not know when enough is enough--she is sabotaging my size 6 bottom. I ask, how many cupcakes is to many to eat in one sitting?

Monday, November 06, 2006

Little Chloe I witnessed her enter into this world, I just love her-- her big bucket head and her tiny tiny feet,my seven year old niece.

My sister called me today to say that Chloe entered her office last night and said "I miss Auntie" and then she cried. Sweet!

Well I miss Chloe too (and Carlin and Cade)!

XOXO Chlo-Yo, till our next slumber party. I promise I will have new stories to tell you and I will hold your hand in the dark room till you drift off.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Friday: Arrived to snow falling--never did stick to the ground but, brrrr it was cold!
Ate lunch at a fun little Mexican joint, a sort of hole in the wall place...yummy.
Played Scrabble with my sister, 7 yr old niece (difficult should be her middle name when playing games) and 9 year old nephew while sipping a French martini 1, 2, 3--whooooaaaaa Nellie that's enough now. My oldest niece and bother in law offered up word tips to his kids. My sister thought I had enough to drink that she could pull of "quib" as a valid word; quib as in-- my baby is sleeping in the "quib" upstairs. FYI SISTER, Elmer Fudd was not invited to the scrabble game.

Saturday: By a guilt laced invitation from my 7 year old niece I attended her tennis lesson--
she did fantastic! Saturday night the Red Wings game, where I refrained from any alcoholic beverages but indulged in the smorgasbord of food my brother in law ordered, he is a fabulous suite host if I may say so.

Sunday: Went to church with my sister to listen to her sing in the Sunday morning
worship rock band...I was impressed sister, you still got it (by the grace of god of course). Then we napped (I needed one badly as my 7 year old slumber party pal was, is an incessant sleep talker). Plane was awfully late taking off but picked up a good tail wind so we arrived only 3 minutes late. The woman next to me picked up the tail wind too, which increased the zzzzz's she produces while sleeping clothes pin anyone, that is what I wanted to attach to her nose to hush her up

And the thing my oldest niece-- who was not home when I left-- was burning to know...on cue, as usual I cried before the car left my sister's garage and again when we pulled up to the airport parking lot. I miss my sister already!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Imposter at large in Detroit...

I am headed to Detroit tomorrow to visit my sister. I can hardly wait, hardly contain my excitement!

I received an email that we will be attending the Red Wing hockey game on Saturday. Do you think they will be able to tell I am an imposter fan? Do you think I can pull off pretending that I am routing for there hockey team? They are the arch enemy to STL. Or do you think they will smell STL all over me and chase me from there sports arena, while throwing sodas and hot dogs? Let's just say thank God they aren't playing the Blues Saturday night!

If I post on Monday you know I pulled it off. If not send out the search party.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

We didn't carve pumpkins (although I heard a complaint about it just last night), the tomb stones that usually confetti our yard are being held hostage in the garage rafters. Instead I have a morphed plastic jack-o-lantern and an adorable raffia lighted witches hat on my front porch. Of the five trick-r-treaters so far not a complaint of my lack of Halloween spirited decorations--except the moans and howls from my own off spring which I totally disregard.

I have graduated to a new phase in my Halloween life--dog is man's best friend. Thankfully I have Uli [puppy] to keep me company tonight.

No need to brew up the customary Halloween fare-- pot-o-chili and roasted weenies. I had McDonald's toss me-- from the drive-thru window while Demi was at piano lessons --a rather cold Quarter Pounder w/ Cheese. My spousal unit is off protecting and serving (where I am sure he will dole out the customary bags of chips from his squad car) , while our off spring have found new locations to celebrate this ghoulish evening. Alee (the pirate) is headed to I-Hop in full regal, with the "council" (aka her closest friends). While Maddi (the red hat lady) has retreated to a lively neighborhood (of more youthful neighbors) with her posse. Demi (Raggedy Anne) has hooked up with her school chum up the street to scavenger our neighborhood (hoping that the dinosaur couple up the street hands out there famous single piece of Juicy Fruit gum). So that leaves me, a big bowl of candy-- this years treats are DOTS, snickers, sour patch kids, smarties, nerds and for the non candy lover, stickers--and the dog.

I suppose I will scroll the satellite guide for a spooky Halloween movie; say The Shining, Carrie or Bride of Chucky.

Don't feel sorry for me, no sirre, there is a certain calming peace to this new phase in my life, I think I may enjoy it.

Happy Halloween all you ghosts and goblins!

Monday, October 30, 2006

A fully loaded but, exciting weekend! We packed in as many middle schoolers in the house Friday night (that a mother can mentally tolerate) for game five of the World Series. The two Maddi's and Nikki represented the eighth grade. They represented well, as the Cards brought home a winner and the clincher! Whoa-hooo Cardinals!!!!!!!! Posted by Picasa

Saturday was the final competition of the marching band season--Greater St. Louis Marching Festival at the Edward Jones Dome. The band continued its hot winning streak--they took first place in the Gold Division with honors for Best Music and Best Percussion. That's Alee playing the flute on the 40 yard line. Posted by Picasa

Alee and the LHS Spirit of STL Marching Band were invited to parade down Market Street in honor of the Cardinals victory...I can almost hear them playing STL Blues. Alee second from the end Posted by Picasa

Kevin, Debbie and Dan did a fantastic job letting those other fans know there place, no one was getting our front row viewing spot (that we staked claim to 2.5 hours before the parade start)! Posted by Picasa

It was insane a real dog eat dog experience keeping people from our front row street curb spot to see the World Series Parade, but we did--all to see this the grande of baseball trophies. Oh, and those ball players look hotter up close in street clothes than they do on the field in there ball uniforms. We love the Cardinals! Posted by Picasa

Friday, October 27, 2006

We can hardly contain ourselves tonight...


Now sister you can proudly wear your Cardinal attire as you walk the streets of Detroit.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

The stadium cleared out with just this sad notice on the big screen  Posted by Picasa

While roaming they still managed to capture the "spirit" of the series Posted by Picasa

Well boys got a pair of FREE tickets to the World Series Game 4 and then...RAIN OUT!  Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

I am off this morning to the blood bank to harvest my platelets--I need some extra cash to offset the cost of the allergy medication I will be taking so Demi can have the love of Uli in her childhood memories. Therapy may have been a cheaper option but, like I said I weakened.

After that I am off to harvest that newly regenerated portion of my liver--Maddi is getting (phase two) braces tomorrow morning. Now thanks to the cash I will receive from the organ harvest, the doctor will be able to purchase at least 10 tanks of gas for that behemoth vehicle he drives, the bright yellow Hummer.

Then I'll come home, bake cup cakes with red and white sprinkles atop. We will sing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" (in addition to Happy Birthday) while we watch-- on the big screen-- the Cards beat the Tigers in game 4 of the World Series.

Happy Birthday Demi!
Go Cards!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Happy 12th Birthday Demi!

I am weak! Very weak!! I caved to the pressure of a little girl's desire.

Welcome to our home Uli (pronounced ooo-lee, after our favorite fashion designer on Project Runway)

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Donned in my green/gold school spirited attire I first did my high school concession stand duty (in the name of the marching band) where, I can now add hot chocolate princess to my resume. Although if I run into that eight year old SOB who ordered his bone warming beverage-- while 100 other shivering Flyer Fans stood behind -- 6 marshmallows and 2 ice cubes; well let's just say he better run fast...

Then I transformed.

I wore my new yummy size 6 denim skirt and my black boots to the casual (bar night) gathering of my high school reunion. I managed to enjoy 2.4 of the four martini's I was served, but purchased only one--thanks whoever you are who kept me with a red drink in hand (or on my boots or on Monica's white shirt, etc.). I proclaim myself the only one who gained sophistication--being the only one who consumed a drink not from a bottle containing yeast or that is brewed down the road. Although I am sure the subject is open to debate.

Here's one encounter I had that evening. Name has been changed to protect idenity.

blonde girl: Hi Paula!

Me: No, Jodi

blonde girl: Aren't you Paula?

Me: hmmmm I believe I just said "no jodi"-- blonde girl shake your head to expose your true hair color let your roots breathe your brain may catch a breath, I think I just said I was not Paula No, sorry, I'm Jodi (states madian name)

blonde girl: I thought you were Paula so-in-so, you look just like her

Me: do not but whatever...talking all sweet Nope sorry not Paula but that's okay you know they say we all have a twin somewhere in the world mine must be Paula and after all these years who knows maybe I do look like Paula okay miss I was a cheerleader freshman year you just caused me to spill my martini, go away, go find Paula even though she isn't here tonight

In the end I was glad I went to at least a portion of the two night affair, seeing the people I cared to see--old friends, constant friends. But you know I just ain't cut out for late night partying anymore. I drug around all day Saturday like I was in a drunken stooper because I was so blasted tired. Sleep is such a beautiful thing. I was reminded of that.

Thank God this thing only comes around every 5 years!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Go ahead say it, bitch, I don't care because I made my own day...

I lost 6.5 pounds, have 7 pounds left to lose to be back to my fighting weight I attained last Christmas. But the thing that has me playing and singing Lionel Richie's "Dancing on the Ceiling" is... I bought a stretch denim skirt last night--SIZE 6!

And it makes me look like I have less junk in my trunk :-)

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

And the Oscar goes to...

The list hung in the counselor's office, I suppose no better place than there in the case that an emotional break down occurs when you realize you didn't get the part you tried out for in the school play.

Demi on the other hand tried out for a "villager" for this year's middle school production of Beauty and the Beast, and she got a better part--a silly girl.

Friday, October 13, 2006

It just doesn't seem right that this early in October that is so chilly outside...I think I am going to put on my swimsuit, crank up the heat in the house, make myself a foo-foo tropical beverage (doused with alcohol) and pretend it is summer.
This morning for breakfast I warmed the hearts and stomachs of my girls with corn bread straight from the oven. The sweet aroma was a perfect touch on an October 35* morning.

Then I warmed my own heart by making reservations to visit my sister in Detroit.

Superstitions aside--I think this Friday the 13th is going to be A-O-Kay!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Maddi's middle name is changing to $40 co-pay--why can't this child just have issues that require a visit to the pediatrician? Not Maddi, she's always been extra special--needs a specialist in every corner of St. Louis.

Today we took a trip The Spine Center for a scoliosis check up. I said my prayers last night that her curve would improve and at most stay the much for my prayers being heard the way I intended. Instead her curve has increased in degree. She is now at 23*. We will return in 6 months if the curve has increased 5* more they will brace her.

Eyes: almost there
Spine: ever changing
Teeth: preparing for braces in two weeks

I just know for all the crookedness in Maddi's being God has to have something extraoredinarily special planned and waiting for her!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Meet Bobby.

Bobby is a pin up from this month's CosmoGirl magazine. He was the "girl bus" mascot (girl/boy bus only on the way down for uniform changing purposes) on the band trip to Springfield for competition.

One band director told the girls on Sunday morning Bobby needed to come down--the boys bus couldn't have stuff like that... the other band director wanted to know how the girls got his college photo--funny guy!

I myself think a little eye candy is good for the soul ;-)

Saturday, October 07, 2006

I'm having one of those moment in time where everything is going so swimmingly it doesn't even warrant a blog.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Went to the opening last night for the Hwy 61 Roadhouse & Kitchen--company was great, atmosphere was fun, appltini(s) was great, and the BBQ spaghetti!

Spaghetti tossed in BBQ sauce with tender chunks of pulled pork tossed through...dam that was deeee-licious!

Oh my gosh I almost forgot, and how I don't know, the andouille arancini--the mix of Creole rice, andouille sausage and asiago cheese rolled into generous sized balls,breaded and deep fried with a side of dipping sauce. Mmmmm!

Good job Bill. I know it will be a great success!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

It was 620am as I watched teens move through the high school parking lot towards the buildings in a lumbering pace; I am not much better myself in movement.

At nearly 123opm I can not credit myself for accomplishing much (much more than brushing my teeth and sticking a letter in the mailbox)-- I drag around the house at a snail's pace.

Some housewife I am!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

I must have fashion sucker written across my heart.

Alee got an invitation to another school's homecoming (which she accepted) and I offered to buy her another dress as long as she could work it with the menagerie of shoes she already owns.

I must have fashion sucker written across my heart.

Not only did I get her a dress but, shoes too. Shoes that, well let's just say I shouldn't have weakened to the purchase--I did.

I must have fashion sucker written across my heart.

I plan at some point and time to have these shoes bronzed--they will be placed on the book case next to her first pair of shoes.

Her escort better not only tell her she looks nice but tell her "gorgeous shoes!".

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Dear Blog,
I am recording my answer here so I am sure never to cave in a moment of weakness (which I seldom experience). "NO!"

Instead I will book an appointment for Demi with the best therapist--I figure as long as I am going to get the blame for depriving her of her childhood wish it is never to soon to start helping her learn to cope.

It seems to happen around this time of every year, for 2006 the call came to me while I was at the ball game Friday night-- I guess she thought if I was excited the Cards were winning she could catch me off guard and get a "yes", twisting a yell of "yes, yes" to Pujols hitting a home run sending man on first and third in to score for a "yes" to her constant and usual question of "can I have a dog".

Last night I believe it went like this..."Dad said, if you say yes, I can get a dog".

I say "NO"! Again.

And, they haven't let up since that phone call. Father and daughter trying like hell to break down mom.

And, the answer remains-- "NO!"

What was that Maddi called me as she woke from surgery, aaahhh yes "meanie head". I guess I am that after all.

Listen I just don't feel like caring for another mammal. Especially one that was not sprung from my loin. Dogs are babies that never grow up...they never grow up enough to take themselves to the bathroom, they never grow up enough to serve themselves breakfast, lunch, dinner or a Scooby snack, the can't be told to go take a shower and brush the hair...

To remind Demi we once owned a dog you are all invited to the telephone pole on the side of the house for a Skeeter Bug Memorial, it is 10 years late but, better late than never. I'll be serving cookies and punch to all mourners.

The Meanie Head Mom

Friday, September 29, 2006

Thursday: The suite life, not the "Zach and Cody" kind but the Cardinal kind, compliments of Dan. It was a most pleasant way to experience my first time to the new Busch Stadium-- I know kind of late in the season to experience but sometimes great things are worth the wait. As "suite" as the accommodations were the game on the other hand lacked any "sweet-ness". I declared it as painful to watch as Demi's softball games were this past season. I even inquired if MLB had a run rule so the misery of watching this so called baseball game could end--Dan declared me as the bad luck charm. The Cards losing so bad it was almost embarrassing to admit they are our hometown team (4-9). We left at the 5 inning (when the score was 1-9) .

Friday: However I have to say if I was in fact the bad luck charm the Cards proved otherwise tonight as I was once again at the ballpark. I enjoyed my second visit to the ball park with Maddi, her friends and moms. The Cards did well, proving there worth of talent (5-10). Now I must say the Midwest weather has taken a turn to chilly but, not to the extent that Maddi is featured in the photo...come on kid-o, the parka was fine but with it zipped to the chin and the hood snug around the face... by the looks of her you'd think we were back in Alaska. Oh yes and gloves, two rights (which I guess are better than two lefts).

Now here's crossing our fingers we make it to the playoffs, dreaming bigger and wishing for the World's Series!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Who would have thought that gas @ a $1.99 a gallon could be exciting to me-- but it does, and I can almost accept this price. Under two dollars feels like a deal.

I am now off this morning to fill up my tank, I just hope the little blue Toyota makes it to the gas station-- she's thirsty!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

It has now been a week of my return to faithful exercise.

On Saturday I happily reverted to my healthy eating habits--lots of fresh raw veggies, fresh fruits and NO sugar/sweets. Yesterday I cut caffeine from my life. I am on the track to burn out with a rebound headache.

Someone, p-l-e-a-s-e, have a cookie and a diet coke (leaded) for me.

While I suffer through my hankering for something sweet and a leaded diet coke I gaze romantically at my size 6 pants...

Monday, September 25, 2006

Six o'clock already
I was just in the middle of a dream

She over slept and was in a panic, my baby girl who prides herself on being timely and well prepared for the world of middle school..."I can't stand Mondays, it is so hard to wake up"

and so I sang to her as I booted her out the door

It's just another manic Monday
I wish it was Sunday
'Cause that's my funday
My I don't have to runday
It's just another manic Monday

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Maddi and Nikki enjoying the LHS Homecoming banquet as the 8th grade band guests of the Marching Band, all excited to play in the pep band for the football game--till the night was canceled due to rain (and a lot of it!) Posted by Picasa

Alee, Mary and Liz excited the band performance was canceled due to weather, snapped a photo to remember the time they got enjoy a football game--then it too was canceled  Posted by Picasa

Alee looking groovy for the LHS 2006 Homecoming dance themed "Jungle Boogie" Posted by Picasa

The gang is all gathered and ready to head to dinner at Blueberry Hill on the U. City Loop Posted by Picasa

Friday, September 22, 2006

It is Homecoming weekend.

My daughter attends the same high school I graduated from, which in itself seems kind of freaky.

Freakier is today I feel 16 again, well maybe not. My hair is short, just as it was 20 plus years ago and I am wearing a T-shirt with the name of my alma mater affixed to the front. I am going to the football game tonight. I may need to get drunk first--then again if I feel 16 maybe I look 16 (wishful thinking friends) and I would get pulled aside for one of those random breathalizer tests.

Now wonder why I don't care about going to the high school reunion I am in high school--all over again.

and then.... the RAIN came, and the whole thing was canceled.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Discipline: activity, exercise, or a regimen that develops or improves a skill; training

M: Mom you know Wednesday is coming and you know what that means?

J: I didn't say what Wednesday I was going to start back to eating healthy and exercising, I just said on Wednesday.

M: Mom you have to think of exercising and getting back on the tread mill as homework.

So my Maddi was right-- think of it like homework, you have no choice, it has to be completed.

So that is exactly what I did!

Just as I was making my way to the tread mill Noel called and invited me to walk the Grant's Trail and I couldn't pass on the offer. We walked for 60 minutes.

I felt great!

I called Julie to invite her to walk the neighborhood with me tomorrow morning. I think if I have a walking buddy I will feel the obligation to stick with the plan.

I'll walk all this week and then add in the floor exercises--I believe Alee added a few more sheets to the folder since she made it for me last year.

Maybe, just maybe I'll be wearing those 2 pair of size 6 pants I got into till this past February.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Noon, rain starts.
One o'clock, coming down in buckets, running through the Target parking lot looking for car--found it and looked like a drowned rat.
Satellite TV is out-- guess the weather man didn't get my memo that I would be "out of the office" on Sunday (which means all I want to do is brush up on my couch potato techniques).
Four o'clock off to the grocery store, dam it started raining again! Got a bum bag and my groceries started "raining" down onto the parking lot--I am now pretty good at chasing rolling cans. I deserve some kind of discount on my next shopping trip for that hassle.
Satellite still out so I am going to crawl under a cover and read a book.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

It was the first of many LHS Marching Band weekends to fill up our Fall calendar.

Alee and her friends enjoyed performing there competition routine "Images" for half-time show. Liz made it back from her varsity softball game in time to perform, in her ball uniform.

Saturday was the first competiton of the season, Belleville East Marching Invitational-- were the band can proudly say they not only took "best music" in the AAA division but they took first place in the division and were the Grand Champions of the competitions. Great way to start off the season! While the band took home three trophies I took home a farmer's tan on my arms and sun kissed cheeks (kissed bright red).

Maddi skipped the first band weekend, slumbering with friends Friday night and voluntering at the Siteman Cancer Research Center Tennis Ralley on Saturday.

Demi took in the football game Friday night but headed to the Forest Park Balloon Races with Uncle Brett on Saturday.

Thank God he designated Sunday as the day of rest because, the minute I get home from church tomorrow I am considering myself "out of the office". Posted by Picasa

Monday, September 11, 2006

What a busy weekend!

Friday: Had a date with the hubby, lunch and a movie (Hollywoodland)

With it being, literally, the only calendar free day between now and Homecoming (Sept 23) to shop for Alee's Homecoming dress we headed to the mall. Alee found a wonderful number for only $34.50 at Forever 21 that is quite retro in look. Perfectly fitting the dance's theme of "Jungle Boogie". I refused however to purchase the $79 Jessica Simpson shoes at Macy's. They were cute I'll give you that, but I just couldn't.

Then we hit the book store to spread more money around town and purchased the book The Book Thief (Demi immediately alerted the middle school librarian the school didn't own the Accelerated Reading test; two days later the librarian emailed her back saying she ordered both the book and the test for the school).

Then we tried out dinner at Noodles & Co. So-So is my take on the place. It could just be what I ordered.

Kevin continues to help Brett finish his basement in preparation for his ready made family to join him in the house.

Saturday: We packed up the overnight gear for us girls (Kevin was working) and headed to Camp Wartburg for Maddi's confirmation retreat. Nothing like sleeping next to a snoring woman (who by the way swears she doesn't snore). In other words I took in little sleep. The girls burnt the night away in giddy girl style.

Sunday: Two of my little shining stars had gray clouds inhibiting there glimmer--other wise known as slumber funk! By the time the retreat was over I was banking on Frued's theory that teenagehood is just a state of temporary mental illness as there hormones try to find the balance that fits there bodies. We survived yet another female teenage day. Prayer my friends, that is what I believe it takes to survive raising girls!

To escape I headed with a friend to see the John Mayer/Sheryl Crow concert. We indulged in a frozen margaritta~I needed it BAD! Question, why does Sheryl Crow look fabulous in trendy hip clothes but if I tried to pull that off I would like I raided my daughters closests? Anyway, Thanks Lisa!

Monday: If I am to take the time today to fixate on 9/11, well I am almost to tired to do so. I can give a brief moment of reflection. Forgive me.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The last few days at this house seem like something from the pages Ken Kesey's book One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

I believe I would be Chief, the chronic, I am in this "ward" for life--come good or bad. I know you were thinking I would be Nurse Rached caring for all my young charges with the proverbial iron fist but not this week, oh no, this week I'm Chief. Somewhere between Monday and Tuesday night I have been driven to insanity.

What drove me there? Fashion. Not my fashion. Maddi's fashion. Fashion crisis.

Maddi would be like McMurphy, she isn't crazy by any stretch of the imagination but she is looking at life in this house as kind of an institution that is a nice break from life; a place to relax, have a few free meals, erupt in a little power struggle ( I guess there are moments when I am Nurse Rached) and...have a nightly fashion melt down.

If I recall properly the patients in Cuckoo's Nest existed nicely in there hospital issued garb.

Monday Maddi sat in her room till nearly 11pm in full fledged emotional melt down over what to wear to school Tuesday. Only to wake on Tuesday morning presenting herself in the kitchen wearing running shorts, a T-shirt, hooded zip-up sweatshirt and Nike sneakers. Aaaaaahhhhhh! All that for a bum be comfortable outfit.

Dare I reflect upon what her room looked like in the aftermath of the meltdown. Demi described her room as "the jungle". An appropriate and acceptable description.

Then last night what should have been an easy pull of the new shirt from the closest--purchased for school picture day--returned us to the place we left off on Monday night.

Maddi has a passion for ladies handbags. She owns more purses than I care to count. So when I suggested humorously, with a touch of seriousness, that she scrap finding a shirt that made her feel good and just hold a beautiful handbag in front her chest...well invision best you can a 13 year old female in the prime of raging and bursting hormones. Enough said!

Fast forward...Maddi woke this morning wearing nothing that danced across the room in the frenzy trial run of fashion picks. However the choice was quite satisfactory. A handpainted bead necklace that once belonged to her grandmother draped around her neck added just a bit more touch of color to her top of choice. The loose curls that enveloped her face were a sweet touch for school picture day.

I report tonight she has drifted off to sleep minus any dramatic course.

Peace has returned to our lil'nest.


Now I don't know about you but I am sure to rest much easier tonight just knowing that Suri Cruise's physical presence has been introduced. Praise be to Vanity Fair. Really this country can rest easy, no the world, no the universe...that is it the universe has not been rotating on its axis properly till now in its anxious waiting to see the little Tomkat.

So there you have it two reasons I'll have a good night's sleep.

gute Nacht meine Freunde.

Monday, September 04, 2006


It isn't that Alee is 16 and learning to drive.
It isn't that Maddi is 13 going on 14.
It isn't that Demi is now in middle school.
You know what made me realize my babies are all grown up?
They all register a cup size.

When I shared this observation with Kevin I saw him tremor with a bit of dread. He doesn't fair well when I bring to his attention the changes in his daughters.

Forever daddy's little girls.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

There is nothing that warms my heart more than when one of the girls has a father/daughter date. On this evening it was Demi enjoying an evening at (the new) Busch Stadium for a Cards vs. Pirates game. The Cards may have lost but the evening was a winner!  Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

As I move about today churning yet another load of laundry, say the fifteenth load of the week (and it is only Wednesday), trying desperately to finish reading "The Devil Wears Prada" (which I started in the summer but for reasons beyond my control got pushed to the side) and between commercials of TLC's "What Not to Wear" I looked down at myself realizing I may be faulted as a victim. I may have even sunk lower than one could imagine, although I absolutely love my new fashion item-- the Hanes Her Way V-neck T-shirts.

I can almost hear Miranda Priestly shrieking in horror as I cowardly admit the designer of my simple little "look relaxed wear it anywhere" white T is none other than the maker of mans most loved tighty whities. Doubled in grisliness by the vision of Stacey and Clinton confiscating my comfortable yet delicious white (and black) T-'s that compliment my black Gap trousers and Levi's. Justifying to all those fashionistas, it puts a new feminine face on the "wife beater" and almost shames Kevin Federline's.

If starlet's like Christina Applegate can advertise the product it must be great fashion. Who could, would challenge that?

Dare I confess I purchased the T's at Walgreens in the isle between Jessica Simpson's Dessert Beauty cosmetic line and Preparation H? Just the mere fact that Jessica Simpson is selling her product at Walgreens is another validation that my Hanes Her Way V-neck T-shirts are fashion forward.

So if I am in any way going to be forced to stand before you all and admit I have fallen prey to the "mommy syndrome" I can not, I won't, I refuse because...because I like comfort and I love my Hanes Her Way V-neck T-shirts!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Alee is excited she found out today she will be going to Bolixi Mississippi this December to work in the efforts of repairing a community devastated from Hurricane Katrinia.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Just a matter of personal opinion...Does a store titled Forever 21 imply you can dress like you are 21 forever? I think not! Which means, 60 year old lady with the cole black dyed hair you are to old to shop in the junior store. Great figures do not always mean dressing below your age. Some women need to learn the true meaning of defying age. There are four simple words I wanted to say to this grandma " what not to wear!"

Do not worry I wasn't shopping in that store for me, I was with my girls.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

I went her Freshman year (they played God Bless America), I didn't go last year (they played God Bless America) or this year (they played the National Anthem). This morning looking at the pictures I am feeling guilty. We should have bought tickets and gone. Oh well can't reverse time. There is next year! On a good note the Cards beat the Cubs. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Maddi is a hoot!

This morning she left for school loaded down like a pack mule--backpack, binder, clarinet, and a purse. I watched for a while, her walking to the corner bus stop. I was afraid she would tip over; weebles wooble but they don't fall down sprung to my mind as I studied her every step.

Tell me what in the heck, being in eighth grade, she needs to carry a purse the size of carry on luggage. I affectionately refer to the "xoxo" bag as "her bag of tricks". You need hair product she's got it. You need a snack she's got it. You have dry skin scented lotion is on it way. She even has a McDonald's Polly Pocket Happy Meal toy, it has become the purse mascot and "all my friends love her". Well I bet they love her but is there a need to strain your spine?

Girls! Will I ever figure mine completely out?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

We survived the first day of the new school year!

I celebrated the occasion by watching a rated R movie and feasting on fresh I did about ten loads of laundry.

When my army of girls arrived home at 3pm they entered the house in a chorus of stories, one trying to over talk the other. Alee couldn't stop talking about the odd nature of her photojournalism teacher. Maddi was in a pickle over the locker partner situation but was joyous that her two closest friends have the same lunch period and Demi could not stop telling stories about some annoying boy. It sent Kevin's head spinning so he smiled and retreated to the basement, knowing full well he would go on the attack for his own information via a cell phone call [while working the night shift] later.

At one brief point of silence while they stared into the refrigerator and pantry-- as all three neared starvation-- I calmly asked Demi "so middle school wasn't that bad was it". "No it was fine" she replied. "Not worth all that lost sleep huh?" "No it wasn't". Why don't they ever trust there mom?

Then came the papers. The last time my signature was in such demand I was purchasing a house.

If I didn't risk mine and my children's life once, I was being instructed to do it again with a new list of school supplies. Grabbing a note pad the girls began listing off item by item:

  • one graphing calculator
  • one AP US History review book
  • one black 1/2" three ring binder with a clear view pocket (for 6th grade choir)
  • two 1/2" three ring binders (for PE and some other class)
  • ten dividers
  • package of page protectors
  • 3-subject notebook
  • two composition notebooks

Round two of school supply shopping equaled up to enough that I was considering contacting, again,that Chinese organ harvester and offering up my recently rejuvenated liver. I layed out a Franklin and a Jefferson in a matter of an hour, jeopardizing our lives in not one but three stores. Oh yes, I forgot I signed a paper that requested I shell over one Hamilton , one Lincoln and one Washington for a polo style choir shirt. Tomorrow I am making an announcement over the PA system it will go something like this... "I am b-r--r-o-k-e! Schools can you hear me? I broke, broke, broke, broke!

It was a beautiful night of uninterrupted sleep. So sweet that was.

Day Two of the school year:

Alee started zero hour so I was making lunches at 530am with my eyes still practically matted shut and then driving down Lindbergh Blvd with my bad breath and bed head at 615am. Zero hour is brutal for me.

The perpetual signing of my name continued on. Can't I just write one letter that says I promise my kid(s) will behave, follow any and all rules you scribe and I will volunteer to help in the classroom and attend field trips. But I refuse to serve cookies and punch after middle and high school music concerts. Ending with my lovely unlegible signature. This would spare me and a thousand other parents from the threat of carpal tunnel syndrome.

As the evening rolls to its end the panic of what to wear is setting in and a myriad of fashion options in question are on the runway (in this case the kitchen tile floor). It seems around this house clothing is equal in importance to homework. Which means it is pretty darn important.

I will now slip in my night shirt, grab a bottle of water and nestle into the couch for an episode of Project Runway.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

After a very short night--Demi extremely nervous about the starting of middle school--I managed to catch a few winks of sleep between the hours of 2-6am. Demi woke after her short night only to begin freaking out again, this time over when she is to eat lunch "no one ever told me what time lunch is!" Maddi now the eighth grader (big man on campus) assured her she will be instructed through each step of the day and she will NOT miss lunch. The teachers will help her find the choir room and grant mercy to all sixth graders who are tardy to class; for at least the first week.

Maddi on the other hand is only concerned that she looks "like a freak with a red eye" and carefully styled her hair to drape over her right eye, keeping her eye glasses at bay. Which she better have on during her classes or I'll be a mad mom.

Alee is dealing with the embarrasment of being the oldest (a HS Junior) standing at the bus stop with middle schoolers, "I'll just tell anyone who asks that I didn't get a parking permit". To which I replied when they ask to see your driver license what will you show, "okay so I'll say I don't have my drivers license". Honesty is always the best route. There is not a darn thing wrong with the transporation option my tax dollars provide learn to love it!

At the request of a first day of school photo Alee spurts off "are you serious that is so gay mom" I'm serious girls! It wasn't like I was going to snap it while standing at the bus stop. So I got my photo to mark the moment in time...Alee concerned now that her 13 yr old sister is taller than she with a 1/2 kitten heal pump. Sorry big sister you are your short mom's girl. Don't they all look so grown up--pausing to have a moment--and so absolutely georgous! Posted by Picasa

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Remember way back in time -- 1971-- when the world was signing the Coca-Cola jingle "I'd Like to Buy The World a Coke"? Well my family is on a plea for the world to buy coke and give us your coke reward points.

For a long time I just pitched to the trash all those bottle caps and 12 pack packaging with there mysterious secret letter and number codes. Then one day I decided to register and see what all these points could get us. The usual small stuff was available; for 11 points one can get a 20 oz bottle of coke. For a few more points a movie and popcorn from Blockbuster along with an assortment of other lovely prizes increasing in point value. Prizes I suppose one could almost procure at lesser the price than it would take to obtain by purchasing a bevy of Coca-Cola. But that would defeat the challenge it gives to all. Talk about marketing genius!

So I told my family why dream small let's dream BIG. Let's dream 26,000 reward points big!

What can one attain for a mere 26,000 reward points? The Great Family Trip-RV America.
Package Includes: One week Standard RV rental for a party of five (based on pick up and drop off at sponsor designated RV rental facility closest to member's home market) Gasoline allowance of 200 gallons. Generator fees included. Seven night campground fees. $1,000 spending money to be used towards RV mileage.

Now this has become a sick sort of obsession. Yesterday I called my elderly neighbor and told her for all the years I have changed her light bulbs I can't continue to do so unless she is willing to relinquish to her good neighbor her Coke reward points. Being afflicted with arthritis she agreed without argument, as she saw it to be a good deal. Then today while working at my brother's newly acquired house I saw an empty Coke 12 pack box, quickly nabbing the reward code for my own benefit I slid the code in my back pocket in a hush-hush manner. I'm telling you all I'm beginning to think I need therapy...And a Diet Coke.

Maddi came up with the brillant criminal plan of breaking into the grocery store at night and removing all the point codes from the packaging. How criminal can it be when we leave the product? Then we decided we would end up on that "stupid crime list" that is complied every year and spreads through email boxes like a bad fire. So we bagged the idea as fast as it was dreamed up. Demi thought maybe dumpster diving could pull us in a few needed points. Alee said not an option she didn't have the right outfit for such an event. So we're going at it the honest way, one coke at a time.

So to date we have managed to drink (beg and steal) 154 reward points. Subtract that from 26,000 we need and we are just a few --okay okay 25,846-- points away from cruising America RV style.

Or as Maddi put... "25, 846 rotting our liver points away from cruising America RV style."

"Have a Coke and a Smile"

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Still healing, but looking better and better each day.  Posted by Picasa