Friday, February 27, 2009

Waking Up

It's tough to explain suffocating, debilitating, paralyzing depression to someone who has never experienced it. The past couple of years have been a fog for me. Part of the depression experience for me is memory loss. There is probably a technical term for it. All I know is that when I come out of serious depression, I don't remember a lot. It's like my mind switches to protective mode and wipes away all the darkness. A lot of the good stuff gets wiped out as well. Something else that depression does is magnify all of my little quirks. I am naturally a little anti-social, but in the past couple of years it has become painful for me to meet new people and be in large crowds. If you have met me recently, I'm sorry if I seem stuck up. I'm not. I'm just dealing with a host of other things and not able to process new people.

There is good news, though. For the past couple of weeks, I feel as if I am waking up the morning after a really long hard day, knowing that the long day is over and a new one has begun. I don't know what has caused the awakening but I'm not about to question it. I'm just grateful. Coming out the other side and looking back, I feel remorse. I don't know that I could change anything if I was able to go back, but I feel bad for what my family has gone through because of me. My kids have had a mother who was "checked out" a lot. To my credit, I never turned to alcohol or drugs, although I was tempted at times. I did, however, turn to sleep. It was easier to take a nap than to deal with life. I could sleep for a couple of hours and that was a couple of hours that I didn't have to deal with anything. Also to my credit, I never considered suicide. That doesn't mean that I didn't lie in bed and wish for a meteor to come screaming through the roof and blast me into oblivion, but I knew that I could never intentionally remove myself from the lives of my children. The most active approach I took towards ending my life was that I quit wearing my seat belt. (Yes, I just joked about suicide.) I knew that having a mother who committed suicide would be harder to deal with than a mother who fought depression. I always had the hope that I would eventually win, and I think I have. I know that there will be hiccups and that the chances that I will never again experience depression are slim, but it feels good to have the scales tipped toward happiness instead of sadness for once.

These have been a rough few years. We have had two unexpected pregnancies, one welcome, the other - not so much. The first birth of the two pregnancies was scary, with me hemorrhaging, so you can understand why the second pregnancy was less than welcome. Add to that the fact that unexpected baby number one was only eight months old when I got pregnant with unexpected baby number two and you understand even more. We filed bankruptcy and as a result lost our house and our car. We celebrated our ninth wedding anniversary by attending our bankruptcy court hearing. We moved twice, both times while I was pregnant. Morgan has attended, dropped out and re-attended college. We have dealt with a seven year old who refuses to pee in the toilet. We have both started and quit a few new jobs.

The point of all of this is not to make you feel pity for me, it is to give insight. I have wondered why I spiraled downward and Morgan held it together when he experienced the same things that I did. Maybe there were lessons that both of us needed to learn and this was the way we had to learn them. I wish that I could say that through all of this I became closer to God, that I learned that I could lean on Him for strength. But I can't say that. I quit praying. I quit reading the scriptures. I quit attending church regularly. While my head knew that God would help me, that he would have carried as much of the burden as I would let Him, my heart insisted on turning away. I sometimes wonder how I have survived my immense stupidity.

So now, here I am, waking up and trying to figure out where all the pieces go. My kids are now nine years, seven years, nearly two years and five months old. I feel like the last time I looked, I only had Mike and Noel and they were five and seven. When people say how fast time flies, I feel it even more. I'm trying to get back in the habit of going to church, praying, having friends, keeping a house. All of the balls have dropped and I'm discovering the difficult reality of getting them all back up in the air.

The remorse that I feel is tremendous. There are times that I hold Jack and look into his eyes and am overcome with shame that I was ever uncertain that I wanted him. At times, my husband has had to shoulder the entire burden of raising a family alone. This means laundry, homework, cooking, dishes, all while still earning a living. Michael and Noel have had to find their independence sooner than they otherwise would have.

I feel the need to express apologies and gratitude to those who have been by my side throughout all of this and are still here. The love and patience that have been shown amaze me. I don't know if I'm the kind of person who could and would have stuck by someone who was as despondent as I have been.

I'm sorry.

Thank you.

I'm back.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Binky Bandit

None of my kids have been binky lovers. Michael wasn't interested, Noel sucked her thumb, and Jack is turning out to be a thumb sucker as well. Adam would never take a binky. We tried a few different kinds and he really liked sucking on a binky but he just couldn't figure out how to keep it in his mouth. My sister used to say that he was a binky retard. Well, Cori, who's the retard now?

That is Jack's binky, not Adam's, but try telling that to Adam.

I love how pleased he is with himself.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Men In My Life

This morning I was snuggling with Spanky, our Cocker Spaniel, and thinking about the similarities between him and Morgan.

See if you can guess who...

  • Sleeps in the bed with me.
  • Has seen me naked.
  • Throws up on the floor when he gets excited.
  • Is handy with power tools.
  • Likes to give himself tongue baths.
  • Likes having his bum scratched.
  • Loves to stick his head out of the window on car rides.
  • Loves me even when I'm grumpy.
  • Has lived with me since the late nineties.
  • Hates being on a leash.
  • Loves French fries.
  • Steals food from the kids.
  • Is a great snuggler.
  • Runs to greet me when I come home.
  • Likes to watch TV.
  • Has a good enough sense of humor that he thinks being compared to the dog is funny, not insulting.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Update on the Mud Situation

Because I love my children and don't wish for them to drown (most days - heh heh), I drove to the end of our driveway to pick them up from the bus. I wasn't sure what I'd find so I took my camera along with me. Much to my surprise and delight, we still have our driveway and thus a connection to the outside world. Observe:

The picture on the top is the update, the picture on the bottom from earlier. I put them side by side so you could more easily compare because I'm nice like that.

Again, top is new, bottom is old. We've got a little bit of an erosion problem.

I wondered how the gaping chasm at the end of our road is doing, so I moseyed on up that way.

Great news! No visible chasm! Wait, maybe that's bad news... While most of the water around our house has drained away, the opposite was true for our road. Here are a couple more pictures of the wetness.

The puddle stretched clear across the road. I'm thinking that all we need are some water skis and a tow rope. We could ski for almost a mile!

Another view of the same puddle. Maybe I'll get some yellow and black paint and alter that sign to read "Boats Entering Highway." Shoot. If only I had Photoshop.


I know that most of you are sitting in front of your computers thinking, "Julie is so nice. She went all the way down to the end of the driveway to wait for her kids. She only had to wait about 20 minutes. I wish I could see her facial expressions as she waited."

Wish no more, fair readers! Yet again, I have thought of everything.

Here I am, patiently waiting. Hmm, I wish I would have brought my phone so I could play Sudoku.

Geez, I should have used the bathroom before I came out here.

This is taking longer than I thought. I hope Adam and Jack are still asleep.

Stupid bus. I have better things to do than sit here and wait for the bus.

Hooray! Here's the bus!

Why I Hate Spring
- or -
Why I Am Grateful for Four Wheel Drive

I was driving home from the "zoo" today and thinking about how muddy my stinking driveway is. I was contemplating ways to make said driveway less of a pain to navigate, and also ways to keep my family and friends clean while getting in and out of their cars.

When I got to the turn off for my road, this is what I found:

It was so nice of the highway department to set out that orange cone, just in case I failed to notice the gaping chasm in the road.

I continued homeward only to find this creek where my driveway should be:

So, uh, does anyone else think that that culvert under the driveway is plugged?

See those weeds in the middle of the picture? Under the water on the near side of the weeds is my driveway and under the water on the far side of the weeds is a canal. Needless to say, canal and creek/driveway have merged.

I bravely navigated the creek, with the help of my trusty Sherman tank. What follows is a progression of pictures that capture my trip up to my house.

Aaah. Home at last. Nothing says "welcome home" like ankle-deep mud and manure.

These last pictures don't do justice to the depth of the mud which, by the way, is not a new thing. The vast amounts of standing and running water are new today, but the mud has been with us since fall in varying degrees of depth and squishiness, depending on the weather.

Friends and family are welcome to come visit but the following is recommended:

  • Chest waders or irrigation boots
  • Cell phone (to call for help if you get stuck)
  • One of those locaters skiers use in case of avalanche. This probably won't save your life, but it may make finding your bloated corpse before summer a lot quicker of a task.
  • Water wings
  • Personal GPS device
You know, maybe you should just bring a boat.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Who I Am

The boring details:

I am the youngest of six children, two boys and four girls. My brothers and sisters will tell you that because of that I'm really spoiled, but I think that I deserved all the extra attention. : ) Actually, there are things that make it harder to be the youngest but we all have to deal with our own trials, right?

My brothers are ten and thirteen years older than me so living with a boy was practically a new experience for me when I got married.

We had a couple of dogs while I was growing up and a number of cats that had seemingly endless litters of kittens. We lived in the country in a new subdivision. While it wasn't farm life, it was country life and I loved it.

My family moved into the house that I was raised in when I was six months old and I lived there until I graduated from high school. My mom still lives in that house.

Those are the basic details of who I am, but I think that there is much more to what makes a person an individual - their habits, opinions, likes and dislikes.

This is me.

I have a soft spot for animals and I am usually sadder at the death of an animal than I am at the death of a human.

I have little tolerance for people who demand respect for something over which they have no control. Being born beautiful is nice, but why be so proud? It's not like it's an achievement. If you command (or demand) respect in the kitchen because you are an excellent cook, that is certainly understandable. But I have met men and women who place themselves above their peers simply because of their gender, color, physical stature, etc. I'd rather be coyote ugly and a really nice person than a bombshell with the personality of a rock.

I have a pretty big personal bubble. I don't particularly care for uninvited physical contact. In fact, I have a compulsion that makes me "wipe off" the unexpected touch of a stranger to my bare skin. My kids know not to tap me on the shoulder to get my attention. It makes me crazy!

I love wearing new socks and underwear.

I love order and symmetry. I like to look at nicely organized shelves and racks in stores. I like to watch neat, even rows of crops pass by me when I drive.

I like to read literature written for older children. Sometimes books written for adults are booo-ring. I can't read the "classics"; Shakespeare, Dickens, Twain, anything written in "old-timey" language.

If I had backstage passes to a concert I wouldn't use them for two reasons: any person, no matter how famous, is still just a person. In addition, I would feel really lame and uncomfortable to be caught fawning over someone in public. The author of Fablehaven recently came to our town for a book signing which my kids and I and half of our town attended. It was funny to hear the girls behind us in line talk about how, if he shook their hands, they would never wash them again. While the author was very nice and I enjoy reading his books, he was still just a regular guy.

I am really content to be home most of the time. I don't like getting out of my comfort zone. When a social event comes up I will usually look for any excuse not to go, even though I know that I will enjoy myself once I'm there.

I believe in God, and I believe that He is a personal, intimate God who knows me individually.

I love humor. If I can make a story more entertaining with humor I will. Why be bland when you can be funny? I love finding humor in unexpected places.

I would rather drink water than any other drink. Sometimes I crave Coke or milk but water is always welcome.

I eat M&Ms with my popcorn. Not on the side, but together. I put popcorn in my mouth and then I put M&Ms in my mouth and then I chew. Mmmm!

I am always embarrassed of the person I used to be, even as recently as last week. I always look back at my actions and think "I was so dumb!"

From 7th to 9th grade, I was teased incessantly by a group of about six or seven girls, some of whom had claimed to be my best friends. It was one of the hardest experiences of my life and while I would never ever willingly go through it again, I am so grateful that I had that experience because I am much more sensitive to the feelings of other people because of it. I don't think that I would be nearly as compassionate as I am today without the "help" of those girls.

I learn and teach visually. I am much better suited to express myself when I have pencil and paper in hand.

I operate under the delusion that my looks have changed so drastically since I was in school that people I haven't seen in fifteen years don't recognize me. While I realize that this is probably not the case, I still don't greet long-lost acquaintances in public because I'm afraid they won't know me.

When they were younger I didn't care for my nieces and nephews so much. I loved them, but they drove me nuts. Now that they are getting into their teens I love being around them. I love my children but I look forward to the time that we can relate on a different level.

I would rather be comfortable than attractive in my clothes. All but one of the pairs of shoes I own are black. I rarely wear makeup, maybe two or three times a year. I shampoo and condition my hair, towel-dry it, run a pick through it and that's it. I hope to look at least clean and presentable, but I don't care enough to spend more than a few minutes on grooming.

I am the opposite of a pack rat. I don't understand the point having lots of stuff. I have one pair of church shoes for summer, one for winter, a pair of sandals, a pair of sneakers and that's about it. I can't understand having multiple items that perform the same function. I often butt heads with my husband and oldest son because they are pack rats.

I believe that if you constantly have to remind people how great you are, you probably aren't all that great.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

A Tribute to Cozies

In our family, a baby is not well-equipped for life unless he has at least two (or three, or four...) baby quilts. It's a tradition. I make one or two while I'm pregnant with them and my mom does the same. When the kids are old enough to talk, we call their baby quilts "cozies." I don't know where the name came from but it stuck. The cozies are slept with, snuggled with, used to make forts, taken on trips, used as a floor coverings for picnics... you get the idea. They get used. A lot. And each of the kids has had his or her favorite.

Mike's favorite was a cozy that he called the Lellow. Lellow was Mikey-speak for yellow and calling a blue quilt yellow makes no sense until you notice that the quilt was tied with yellow yarn. While this was his favorite, he mostly slept with it or snuggled it while watching movies. If he couldn't find that cozy, another would suffice. He didn't have any meltdowns stemming from the lack of his Lellow.

When Mike was five or six, the cozies had been used and washed so much that they were beginning to get holes in them and the binding was almost worn through. I bought a big Rubbermaid box and told Mike that we should quit using the cozies and put them away so they wouldn't deteriorate and he could still keep them. I think there were some tears shed but he agreed. We had a countdown of maybe a month or so to get him used to the idea. When the big day came, I washed the cozies one last time and we put them away. My mom made another little cozy for him to snuggle at night and that was that.

Then came the Pink.

Noel didn't lack for cozies, but this one, dubbed the Pink, was far and above the favorite. This cozy went everywhere with us and a meltdown quickly ensued if it was lost or forgotten. If Noel watched a movie, so did her Pink. If Noel went somewhere in the car, so did her Pink. When she got hurt, she wanted Mommy or Daddy and her Pink. Noel was a thumb-sucker and she would stick her left thumb in her mouth, use her right hand to find one of the yarn ties (known as a fwuffy) and then rub the tie on her nose. She soothed herself to sleep like that for years. If a cousin or uncle grabbed her Pink and said, "This is my Pink," she would flip out. The Pink was used so much that it got worn out much sooner than Mike's cozies did. I let her use it until it was shredded rags. The back was completely separated from the front, there were rips in both the front and the back and some of the batting was gone. Every time I would suggest putting the Pink away before it eroded to nothing she would wig. I finally convinced her that I would make her a new Pink and that she would be happy that she had saved the old one. We used the countdown method with the Pink, just the same as we did with the Lellow, but we had to keep extending the deadline. One day, after I had washed what was left of the poor cozy, I told Noel that it was time. She cried, sucked her thumb, rubbed a fluffy on her nose, hugged the Pink, stroked it, and finally let me put it in the box. I was careful to put the box away where she couldn't get it because I was sure that she would have snuck it back if she could have. I made her a new blanket, a twin size to fit her bed, and we have moved on.

This is Adam's Cozy Cows. I am secretly thrilled that this is his favorite because I made this one. Mike and Noel's faves were both made by my mom. : )

I found the fabric for this quilt at some obscure quilting shop that was going out of business. The flannel I used on the back was ridiculously high-priced, something like $12 a yard but I got it for super cheap because the shop was closing. It is the softest, best quality flannel I have ever used. It has never pilled or changed texture. It is still as soft and smooth as the day I bought it. I bought the fabric because I liked it and hoped to have a baby to make a quilt for soon. This was during the three year period of infertility that we went through between Noel and Adam. When more time passed and I still wasn't pregnant, I finally resigned myself to the fact that I was going to be infertile forever and would just have to be grateful for the two kids I had been blessed with. I made this quilt, thinking that I would give it as a gift to the baby of a friend or relative.

Obviously, the dry spell ended and I soon had a sweet little guy to give the blanket to. We call it the Cozy Cows because it is a cozy and it has cows on it. Clever, huh? My mother, however, calls it the cozy cow which drives me insane. The Cozy Cow sounds more like a bed and breakfast for dairymen, don't you think? ("Here at The Cozy Cow, we take care of the milking. Go ahead - sleep in until 5:00!")

Anyway, Adam's attachment to this cozy seems to be headed towards a level "Pink" rather than a level "Lellow." When it is dirty I have to employ the same out-of-sight-out-of-mind technique that I employed with Noel and the Pink: wait until he's out of the room, throw it in the washer and then magically produce a clean, sweet-smelling cozy an hour-and-a-half later.

Seeing how much my kids have loved their cozies has inspired me to make them for the babies of friends. I have made some to sell but no one has bought any yet, which is disappointing but still okay because making them is fun and when future babies are born, I'll have ready-made gifts. In addition, I look forward to seeing which cozy will be Jack's favorite.

An Ode To Cozies
Written By Me From the Perspective of My Kids
(Got that?)

I love you in the night and in the daytime, too;
I love you when I'm wet and my diaper's filled with poo.

I love to rub your top and I love to rub your ties;
I like to pull you over my head to protect me from the flies.

You're always up for cozy time, reading books with Mom;
And just in case you weren't aware, I'll tell you - Mom's the bomb!

You're always there to save me from scary things in the night;
Though I'm not quite sure how well you'd do against Chuck Norris in a fight.

I like to have you with me when we're eating mashed potaters;
I rub some gravy on you; it's a real good snack for later.

You stay with me in my car seat when we go on long trips
And always catch the boogies when from my nose they drip.

My love for you is really big; I do not like to share;
If I lose friends because of you I guess I just don't care.

I wonder if it's legal for me to marry you?
Stranger things have happened in California it's true.

The day will come, sweet cozy, when you and I must part;
So until that fateful day is here, I'll hold you to my heart.

What's Up With Jack?

From birth to sometime around three months, Jack was a wonderful baby. Very quiet, laid back and didn't cry unless he had a good, obvious reason. Then one day it was like a switch was flipped and he became this monstrous screaming demon. There are times when the child cries from the moment he gets up to the moment he falls asleep, only stopping to whimper in between cries. He also lost his appetite and rarely will eat more than two ounces at a time which is weird for a four-to-five-month old.

We have tried everything we can think of for this child and have been to the doctor numerous times, with numerous diagnoses. The most likely culprit is acid reflux, so we give him a dose of Prevacid every morning. The acid reflux diagnosis was given at his four month check up and we were told to come back at five months to see if his weight had gone up.

Yesterday was the five month check up and he had only gained 6.5 ounces, which isn't very good for one month. The weight line on his growth chart is almost horizontal. The doctor will usually tell you that your child is in the X percentile for other kids his age for height/weight. Jack isn't even on the chart because he is so light.

Unfortunately, Jack is also currently battling RSV, which has made him lose his appetite and be cranky. Dr. Yost (our wonderful pediatrician) said that right now is not a good time to try to find out the underlying cause for Jack's problems because he has struggled with goopy viruses all winter and now has RSV to boot.

For now, we will continue to give Jack Prevacid, we changed the type of bottle he drinks from to see if we can help increase his suction and ability to eat and then we will check back when he is six months old. By then, he will have grown enough (we hope!) to have an increase in his Prevacid dose if that is what is needed and if the problem isn't acid reflux, then we will look elsewhere for the problem. Dr. Yost says that Jack's behavior is weird because he sleeps through the night just fine but he is so crabby during the day. If it was acid reflux, theoretically he would be crankier when lying on his back.

All together now: hmmmm....

He isn't always crying, as he showed while we were at the doctor's office. He actually smiled and cooed throughout his entire exam yesterday. I promised the doctor that that wasn't Jack's usual behavior and he just laughed. I guess it's pretty common for kids to be super crabby at home and then perfect angels when the doctor sees them.

We really hope that Jack either outgrows this phase or we can figure out what is ailing him because it's so hard to see the little guy so uncomfortable.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Plethora of Pictures

I just couldn't resist posting some pictures of my fabulous family. Enjoy!

Noel, hamming it up in Mike's Halloween cloak.

Moe and Jack, the biggest Bennett and the littlest Bennett. I think I caught them in the middle of telling secrets about me. Only one of them looks like he is guilty. Can you tell which?

Mike does NOT enjoy kisses from his sister. This picture was the product of lots of begging and me telling him that he didn't have to enjoy it, he only had to hold still.

This is what happens when you wear braces and your face meets another kid's head.

Jack was getting ready to start working the lip in this picture. I wish I could have gotten the full pout. This is just pre-pout.

If you look up cutie-patootie in the dictionary you'll find this picture.

Adam is helping his Daddy put our new bookshelf together. Who knew that stabbing the packing foam with a screwdriver is helpful?

Goober kids.

"Mike... *labored breathing* I am your brother... *more labored breathing*"
I love that you can see his little face peeking out the eye hole.

Check out the look on Jack's face and the way he is stroking his chin. He is most definitely plotting a way to get his hands on Adam's sippy cup before Adam loses interest in the camera.

This is the goofy man I married just doing his thing. At about 1:15 in the video you can hear Morgan coaxing Jack to "back off the thumb." If you look closely, you'll see that Morgan is missing about the top 1/4 of his thumbnail. He ripped it off at work and the guy he was working with about tossed his cookies.

Silver Linings

I look forward to the day when Jack has outgrown his bouncy chair, swing and walker so that I have the floor space back that all those items are occupying.


I enjoy that Jack is not mobile and can't get into mischief that other members of our family can (read: Adam).


I look forward to the day that Jack can hold his own bottle so that every single feeding isn't an automatic time-out for me.


I enjoy the special one-on-one bonding time that I get with Jack that I won't get as much when he can feed himself.


I look forward to the time when Morgan has his degree and won't have to go to work and then school, making his away-from-home-time over fourteen hours a day.


I'm glad that he has the opportunity to learn and meet new people. I'm also grateful for the time it has given me with my kids.


I look forward to having a house with more than one bathroom and more than one level so the kids have somewhere to play besides right on top of me.


I love the house that we currently live in, along with the awesome jetted tub, super low rent and awesome neighbors/landlords.


I look forward to potty training, pants-wetting, nose-picking, wall-coloring, book tearing and quilt top-cutting being worries of the past.


I am so very glad that drugs, alcohol, sex, poor friend choices and driver's licenses are not current problems!


I look forward to the day when all of my children are in school, providing me with a full eight hours of "me time" a day. (Granted, that "me time" will be full of toilet scrubbing, laundry folding, grocery shopping, etc., but it will still be "me time.")


I love having little boys to play with, cuddle with, take naps with and talk to. In addition, it's nice to only worry about 2 sets of parent/teacher conferences, field trips, orthodontist appointments and all those other things. Soon it will be four sets!


I look forward to Morgan and I being empty nesters. What will we do with ourselves?


I love, love, love my children and I am so very grateful that I have had the opportunity to be their mother. I have learned so much from them.


I look forward to no more poopy diapers.




I just can't think of a silver lining to the poopy diaper cloud.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Has anyone seen the purple sippy?

This has been my refrain every night when I have done the dishes for the past week. Anyone who has had children knows about the sippy cup hunt. I always hope that the sippy is filled with water or at least juice instead of milk.

I've been sitting here at the computer checking my emails and Adam has been sitting on my feet like a little puppy. I suddenly became aware of the tell-tale sippy slurping sounds and it registered in my brain that I had not yet given him a sippy today. I peeked under the desk to see him holding this cup in his hand, little dribbles of cheese on his lips with a look on his face that clearly said, "What the hell is wrong with my milk?"

Poor little guy. I'm just gonna go retch in the toilet now.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

This must be what celestial glory tastes like

I made the treats pictured below (can I just say that "treats" is such an inadequate way to describe these?) from a recipe I found on bakerella. Mine are not as pretty as the ones featured on that blog, but I can't imagine anything being any more tasty.

These are a delightful concoction of cake and frosting dipped in chocolate. Let me say that again:




I just drooled a little bit.

Of course, there have been the obligatory "balls" jokes passed around between my friends. For those of you not in the know, please watch this video.

No one can resist my Schweaty balls.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Reason Number 19

This is another reason why I love this man:

Those are toilet plungers on his head. We were in public. He let me take a picture of him and then laughed just as hard as I did.

Ah, love.

Dog Food Breath and a Poopy Diaper

Adam just ate dog food and then tried to kiss me. I wouldn't let him. Go ahead. Call me names. Dog food breath stinks.

I just posted a comment on my sister's blog and the captcha they gave me was "shist". I'm still giggling over that one.

Continuing in the vein of complete randomness, I just have to tell you about my day. Have to.

Let's all go back in time, back to about 11:30 last night.

You know what; I'm not in the mood to re-hash the whole thing. The point of the story is: my mom was going to watch my kids for me today so that I could get some sewing done. That did not, in fact, happen because we were all out there at 2:00 am and then the little boys and I stayed there until 5:00 this evening.

I have set up babysitting by my mom three times now so that I can sew and each time I have been unable to actually sew a single stitch. Grr.

I gave Noel a haircut the other day. I've never done a girl haircut. Boy haircuts (with clippers) are easy. A blindfolded chimp could do a clipper haircut. But a girl's haircut? I kept telling her that I had never done it and wasn't sure if I could. She didn't care; she wanted me to cut her hair. She didn't care if I totally screwed up her hair.

So, I armed myself with a pair of sharp scissors, a comb, a squirt bottle and a general idea of the length she wanted. I started out by getting her hair wet with the spray bottle and combing it all out straight. I then started under one ear and cut her hair to the length she said she wanted, leaving myself a little extra length for insurance. I continued around her head, combing out sections and trimming then even with the previous section. I got all the way around her head to her other ear, finished up and then turned her to face me. The hair over the ear I started on was a full two inches longer than the hair on the other side!

Long story short, I evened it out and learned a valuable lesson. I will cut the hair under both ears first next time and then make them meet in the back.

Or just pay a pro to do it.

Here are pictures of the finished style. She is asleep right now so I tiptoed into her room and took pictures while she snoozed. You really can't see her hairstyle very well, but she's pretty dang cute so here they are anyway:

You like those headphones? That's a big no-no. Little stinker...

So, umm, it's a bit shorter than the shoulder-length bob she asked for, but.....

Yes. A shoulder-length bob. But she likes it and so do I. So there.

It turns out that Adam is poopy. Dog food breath and a poopy diaper. It just screams "Snuggle me!" doesn't it?

Friday, February 6, 2009

Yay! A New Blog!

Warning: reading this post may cause you to impulsively visit my new blog,, which may cause you to impulsively commission a quilt for a dear friend/relative/pet, which in turn may cause said friend/relative/pet to shower you with gratitude, praise, chocolate and free babysitting.


Please check out my new blog, I use this blog to entice readers to buy my (super cute!) stuff. I use the money that I make by selling the (super cute!) stuff to buy supplies to make more (super cute!) stuff.

If you check out my blog and share it with your friends, all of your wildest dreams will come true.

P.S. I promise not to post after midnight anymore, as I am currently a bit sleep-deprived loopy.

P.P.S. Did I mention

Monday, February 2, 2009

18 Reasons Why I Love Being Married

Lately I've been thinking about just how much I love my smokin' hot hubby and how crazy-good this thing called marriage can be. I love being married, so much more than I ever believed I could. Just because I enjoy blogging in list form, here are the reasons why:

  • He is smokin' hot. I really really love that he is a big guy. Whenever I hug someone skinny I'm always afraid that I will break them. I don't know if my ego could take being married to someone who is smaller than me. It's also really sexy that he has arms the size of most guys' thighs.
  • He can fix just about anything.
  • It's great to share the experience of raising my kids with someone who loves them as much as I do.
  • That being said, it's good to know that there is someone who will commiserate with me on days when I contemplate the demise of one or more of my children.
  • I honestly believe that he finds me attractive, no matter how I feel about myself. He may need some professional help for that, but it sure as shootin' won't be me who points that out to him!
  • He makes me laugh. A lot.
  • He laughs at me, sometimes when I don't intend for him to find me funny.
  • He reminds me that no matter how bad things may seem, life will go on and we will face it together.
  • He is an awesome dad. He will change diapers on his own accord. I don't even have to ask. Really!
  • He also loves to play with kids. I spend most of my time alone with the adults at family gatherings because Morgan is playing with the kids.
  • Whenever he does something really dumb, I can laugh at him and he'll laugh right along with me.
  • He will usually share the burden of cleaning up whichever bodily fluid has found its way from a child or pet to the carpet or furniture.
  • He occasionally will wash dishes or do laundry, even though that is technically my job.
  • Even though he doesn't enjoy it, he will go fabric shopping with me and even pretend to be interested in which fabrics go together best.
  • He never chides me for stuffing my face with things that I shouldn't.
  • He always compliments me on my cooking and thanks me for the meal, even if it's just a warmed-up can of soup.
  • He narrates what he imagines our non-talking children (and pets) must be thinking. Hilarious. Each one also has a very distinct way of talking, i.e. a lisp or accent. I've found myself saying, "Since when has Jack had a Spanish accent?"
  • He takes the whole package of me - good stuff, bad stuff, stuff yet to come - and he loves me.

I could go on and on, but I don't want any of my readers to be jealous. : )