Sunday, May 31, 2015

Back packin' backpacks

Today was a run of the mill Sunday, I guess. I was at work(church)most of the day. We had a new family visiting with four sweet children who made themselves at home. I love that and it makes me feel good about what we are doing in children's ministry. After church ended, I took my oldest to get the last few things for her trip. She leaves to go on a mission trip with the youth group tomorrow. I pray it will be a great experience for all going. One of our associate pastors is moving on to another church, so there was a reception this afternoon for him and his wife. There was a good crowd while we were there, so I imagine they received quite a nice send off. Afterward, we packed backpacks full of school supplies to send to Zimbabwe to Ishe Anesu after school project that our church and conference supports. It is a wonderful program and its director, Maria Humbane, has a powerful story that is a joy to hear. After I heard her the first time, I wanted to go with her back to Zimbabwe. I will get there someday.

Now to go visit with my girl a little longer before bedtime. I'm going to miss her this week, but know she will have a meaningful experience. Night all.
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Saturday, May 30, 2015

Workin' at the car wash

Now that we are officially High School band parents who have to be a part of the Band Boosters, we are responsible for fulfilling the obligations that come with our new school. It takes a village to raise money for the band and it also apparently takes a village(or guilt tripping friends and relatives) to have a successful fundraising car wash. This was S's first official car wash experience as an incoming freshman and she was a bundle of nerves. By the end, she was one tired and hot puppy dog. One hour of waving signs by the side of the road and three hours of washing cars gave her a greater appreciation for a cool house and a comfy place to lay down. We did our best to lend our support by bringing two cars by and offering to bring our bikes and even some Little Tikes Cozy Coupes from the backyard to be washed. That offer was quickly squashed and we took our clean car to Ace Hardware for Saturday popcorn and garden supplies.

Going to bed and read about gardening stuff. Our plants are doing quite well. We are hoping to have a nice bounty to harvest and can this year. We can hope. Night all!

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Friday, May 29, 2015

Lemonade and FIRE

Our day started at oh dark 3:30am. G left with bunches of other safety patrols at the crack of dawn to go tour Washington DC. She was a little nervous, but excitement was by far the prevailing emotion of the day. They toured the Air and Space Annex today. We just got off the phone with her...a room full of giddy girls. You can imagine the volume level I am sure.

The boy decided he needed to do some work for the community today, so he had a lemonade stand. As anyone with a child who has had this idea knows, the cost of materials usually outweighs the profits of the day. S helped him make his posters and decide on his charity of choice. The community meal at our church is a wonderful program that could always use more funds to help buy food, so he chose it as the lucky recipient of his lelmonade bucks. As he said, he was "helping the community one lemon at a time." Excellent really. He received several generous overpayments from kind strangers and some secretly texted friends and relatives. He made $32.30 for the meal. For a fairly quiet Friday, I call that a pretty good haul for lemonade. He made a delivery up the hill to our neighbor who has hurt her back and to neighbors who were doing yard work. I am ashamed to say it, but I was so thankful when a downpour came and we had to close up shop. My gosh, it was blazing hot outside and 4 hours were enough.

S currently has her buddy over for a sleepover. We came in not long ago from having a fire and s'mores. We tried them with Reese cups this time. Evil. Fire, marshmallows and peanut butter. Evil. When last I left them, they were experimenting with hairstyles and makeup. Who knows what I'll find when I go to wake them up in the morning. Should be fun!

I'm going to bed now. Full days call for full a full night's sleep.

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Thursday, May 28, 2015

A good day

Our day started off in a normal typical fashion. I went to work out and got my rear end kicked...which I deserved. After a little trip to the grocery store and a hot shower to take some of the pain of squats away, we readied ourselves for our much anticipated guests. Instead of trying to explain the different family connections and what person married what other person, I will just say that my two nephews came to visit today. C is here in school at UT and Abraham, who you may remember from some of our past holidays, is living and working in Iowa. He flew in a few days ago to make a trip to Atlanta. Since he is from Nigeria, he had to go to Atlanta to reapply for Visa stuff and all that complicated business to keep him in the country. I ask that you say a prayer that he can stay in the country. He is working so hard and doing so well, but so are many others in his same situation. The slots to be able to get the necessary paperwork and approval give him about a 25% chance to stay in the US. We sure hope he can be in that 25%. Anyway, we had a wonderful day with them, playing basketball and soccer and having lunch and gelatos together. They all had a wonderful time and were so grateful for their attention and kindness. What a great day!

On another note, G leaves tomorrow with scads of other recently graduated 5th graders to go on the AAA Safety Patrol trip to Washington DC. It makes my mom tummy a bit sick to think of her going, but she is going to have a great time. They are in a little isolated bubble and get to have such exciting opportunities. Just say a prayer for her and her safety comrades.

One last thing. A friend contacted me tonight. Her friend's 4 year old daughter has been diagnosed with leukemia. Please pray for her, her family and her doctors. Medicine has come such a long way, but I am sure that is of little comfort for parents processing such devastating news. Thanks to all you prayer warriors out there.

I am going to bed. 3:30 is going to come awfully early, but it is necessary to get a girl to the bus on time. Night all.
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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Play date success

The boy went on his aforementioned play date today. I received a report from the other mom that he was a model guest and used very good manners. He has been quite the sloth upon his return, so I am very thankful for his buddy's ability to wear him out. And when I say out, I mean OUT. He is rallying a bit since it is dessert night and he has a bit of a sugar rush. I imagine that as soon as he is showered and pajama'ed, he will crash hard. The dog had her play date at the dog park, so she will crash soon. It is exxhausting to ward off the advances of male dog who tries to bust a move on your head. She took it like the tough lady she is, but come on, recently neutered boy puppies. Is chivalry dead? The girls have fought all day, so they will crash soon. I have a mystery novel that I have to know the ending of, so I cannot crash...but I am fading fast.

Going to read my book before the chaos of bathtime begins. Night all.

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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

He will not sleep tonight

With summer comes lots of things: more frequent cookouts, swimming, vacations, VBS, you know, fun things. My son would add one more thing to the list: playing with friends. I should have put that at the top of the list. He got his first invitation to play at a friend's house he's never been to before. I am honestly surprised that you did not hear the huge "WHOOP" from whatever corner of the state or country you reside. He and S, his buddy, have been in class together for 2 years. They are both good sweet boys who are considerate of others, but still manage to be a little devilish and have a great time. We got to know his dad during a field trip and field day. Times have changed since we were little, but you almost have to try parents out before you know whether you can leave your child with them. S's dad and I, along with another mom, survived the Safety City field trip. We all have matching battle scars. I am anxious for the boy to have his play date. He is a little different with different interests. He's used to being around girls since he has two big sisters. His closest friend, D, has been his friend since birth and is also a girl. He has some friends at church who he hangs out with, but not many boys from school has really clicked with him. I'm so glad he will have this opportunity. Here's hoping I don't blow it for him. I am a hermit and am self conscious about our house as I have said before. Most of his friends live in very large and new houses. We live comfortably in a 60+ year old house in a non-cookie cutter neighborhood(not that those are bad). We just like old houses. We have a nice yard and remodeled insides. There's nothing wrong with our house...but I have to get over that. I need to get over that so I don't lose friends for myself or my children. I know I am putting a lot of weight on one playdate, but I hope this is the first of many times they are together. Everybody needs a best buddy.

Night all.

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Monday, May 25, 2015


Today is Memorial Day and it always is a day full of lots of thinking for me. My aunts have always been good to go visit the cemetery and clean off the markers and stones that memorialize our dearly departed relatives. For the past several years, I have made it part of my Memorial Day observances to do the same. My Aunt Edrie, as I have spoken in years past, was in the Navy. We have a few things left from her career as a Yeoman in the Navy and are always proud to place a flag and flowers on her stone, as we do on my grandparents' stones as well. Today the girls went with me to place the flowers. It was very sweet to watch them tend to their relatives' stone and clear the stray weeds away. They placed the flowers and said a little prayer before leaving. As we drove around to leave, we came upon an interesting section of the grounds that had more items placed on the stones than others. We stopped to walk around and pay our respects when we found that the particular section we were in was for the youngest of these who had departed this life far sooner than they should have. We stood in stunned silence as we read the heartbreaking sentiments from parents to their children and said another prayer that their broken hearts would know God's love and comfort. Cemetaries have never been creepy to me at all, but more of a calming place to remember and learn about those who have gone before us. The girls feel the same way. We talked about always being respectful while visiting. We talked about the body and the soul and Heaven and complete healing. It was heavy material, but a learning time. We left and went to our church's cemetery to pay our respects to some church friends there. Sweet baby D, who we talked about a couple of years ago, is there and the girls cleared the weeds off his stone. They talked about what a sweet baby he was and how he must be playing with our dog Cosby up in Heaven. It was a heavy morning, but a sweet one.

The kids had their annual homemade ice cream at a celebration for our little part of our fair city. They listened to some music and the boy climbed a rock wall. Not bad for a Monday.

Now I must go destroy my boy in Blokus. He must be schooled. Night all.

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

Swimsuit hell

My oldest leaves in a week to go on a mission trip. She is very excited and we are as well, but the packing list makes my head hurt a little. They are going on a trip associated with a youth ministry/mission organization and they have fairly detailed requirements for what people can wear. I get it. No one needs to be looking like a hoochie when doing acts in the name of God. Sends a mixed message. But when I have a child who is 13 and lanky. She is closing in on me in height, which is still not tall, but her height and waist size don't really play nice with each other. She could wear a girl's 8-10 shorts...except for the fact that the length would be wildly inappropriate and uncomfortable for even the shorty-shortiest aficionado. So on our quest to find loose, but not too loose, fingertip, but not too much longer shorts, I thought we were going to kill each other. We finally had to settle on boy's shorts which are not the most flattering to a girl's figure...but then we circle back to the "you can't be in mission and look too tight-short-or female" philosophy that this organization adopts. Again, I get it. They are going to be working on the grounds of a group home for troubled kids. Fashion statements are not needed. God's love and light are. Their specifications were also specific about swimsuits. So are the hub's and mine. Again, at her age the line quickly goes from cute to hoochie quickly. Here is my conversation with the hub when S was off desperately trying to find an appropriate suit in another part of the store:

Me: This may take a while. We are now in our 5th store. Unbelieveable.
Hub: So sorry. The boy and I are building his Lego set...we're on page 44 of about 5.5 million.
Me: Wow. Better your eyes than mine.
Hub: True.
Me: The bathing suits we have found either make her look like a streetwalker or a three year old. It is very frustrating.
Hub: I'm okay with the three year old look for a bit longer.
Me: Honey? When I say 3 year old, I mean it would only fit on a three year old...thus reverting the look once again to hoochie status.
Hub: Oh. I see.
Me: I gotta go. I need to get the girl some hydration and a snack. She may smack down a mannequin in frustration.
Hub: Get on that. I'm going to finish this Chima ship and finish watching the Indy 500.
Me: Pray for us both.

Finally, at store number 8, we found a possibility. I hugged her in the swim section and said, "Praise The Lord!!" maybe a bit louder than one might want to in a department store. People looked. I don't care. Mission accomplished. I got to go home and start on my book again...just to find that one of my new favorite characters had gotten shot in the back with a shotgun.

Just send me back to the swimsuit section. I mean, really.

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Saturday, May 23, 2015

Time for me to fly

As I am deciding what to write, REO Speedwagon is playing on the ipad and the kids are contructing items with Legos. We are a super duper party I know. We have had a soccer free day which was so very nice. I love to watch them play, but we have to have some family time. The downtown farmer's market provided a nice morning of shopping, people watching and local buying. The kids enjoyed Cruze Farm ice cream and Soccer Taco for lunch. We visited one of G's teachers who is a server at a super burger place down there. We also saw several school and church friends. Homecoming downtown...kind of like the soccer fields on Saturday. The kids wanted to buy some books, so we went to McKay's and bought several gently used books. Afterwards, we also dove into our literary finds outside on the patio. What a lovely day to read and enjoy nature!

Community Meal at church was tonight, so we helped with that. The kids, as always, were dishwashing machines. The boy gets into his work and tickles us with his excitement as he dumps uneaten food into the trash and pours leftover tea in the sink. He has a servant's heart and I am so humbled by that. His little face just cheers up everybody there. Love it.

Night all. I'm tired.

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Friday, May 22, 2015

I am the blogger's daughter

Hi everybody, I am S, and I will be taking over for my mom while she is resting after a long busy day. Through the blog you have probably learned a little bit about me, as you know I am the oldest. Here are some things you probably figured out, I am a percussionist, and a soccer player, and I have recently graduated middle school. Now that I am about to go to highschool that means it is time for band camp and since I play the first bass I am on the drumline I will have band camp this year. Saying that, we had a get ready day for the incoming freshman and I went to that today. So last year I was in the front ensemble and I went to the same thing last year but last year was different because I had an interesting expierence. So we have this command called attention and when you do it you stand straight up and stand still, I, being the dancer I am, locked my knees while doing it and almost passed out on the first day. So this time I made it my goal not to lock my knees and I luckily didn't pass out. Not passing out on the first day of band activities was a great way to start my summer of 2k15. So to conclude, don't lock your knees and i hope you enjoyed my guest appearence on Please Don't Kiss The Dog On the Lips Blog by me, S. Have a good summer, good night everybody!

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Another one in the books

Well, another school year has come to an end. It really is kind of hard to believe. This one has flown by in one big crazy flurry for sure. I don't really want to think about it too much or I will cry. The kids all had really great teachers and great years for the most part. Now we have one summertime before big transitions take place: a move to middle school and a move to high school. Yipes is all I have to say. The kids have all started their break with funny tummies, so hopefully they will pass quickly. S starts rookie band camp tomorrow. It should be okay since she was with them last year and knows a lot of what they are learning already. I think she is nervous, but excited to see her high school friends and share the fun with her own age friends who are moving up with her. It is going to be a great ride!

I'm going to go snuggle up with a couple of children, watch something funny and not observe the usual bedtime. Night all.

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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Class party redneck

The boy's class party was today. Talk about some ramped up kids! They had a water ight and popsicles and ice cream sandwiches and chips and water and more water and more water. There were bubbles as big as my head and chalk drawings and epic football games with classroom dads. There tattooed children and moms(like me):

Who doesn't love a crown wearing pig with a cupcake? I mean come on. It was a nice hot way to end the last full day of school. I did miss a tiny strip of skin on my neck and now it looks like it was painted with some unearthly color probably called "Super Pink Lemonade". Oh well. I come from redneck stock and I am happy to represent the family.

Night all. Half day of school left until SUMMER!!!!
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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

One more time...until next May

Today was our last awards day of the school year, thank goodness. I won't bore everyone again with my soapbox about awards day and how I don't have the constitution to handle the pressure. I feel like Chevy Chase in "Spies Like Us"..."I can't stand the pressure!":

I could only find a picture of it with Spanish subtitiles, but you get the idea. Anyway, all the boy really wanted was an art award. That was it. He came dressed in his pink to support his music teacher who just recently had surgery for breast cancer and was ready to support his other friends:

They had quite a lively group of K, 1st and 2nd graders in the assembly. I love those kids. So stinkin' cute. They were all very well mannered. The boy sat patiently while the awards were called. He got the award he hoped so desperately for, plus a few more. Gravy on the biscuits...icing on the cake. He was thrilled.

Our hearts are full. No, our childrens' worth is not based on the number of awards at awards day. We would love them and cheer them on if they never got a single plaque or printed certificate. We know their worth to us and their character as human beings. For their sake, I am so relieved that they were all able to walk across the stage(or stand in front of it) and be recognized by their teachers and peers. It is certainly a great way to end their school year.

Now I'm going to retire for the evening. School and mowing have caught up with me. Night all.
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Monday, May 18, 2015


SO today was S's awards day. It was the first one of her middle school career that we were able to attend. Her first awards day was spent at home recovering from a horrible case of mono and multiple other issues. That was a nightmare that also led to a summer of home schooling. Woohoo. Last year, the hub and I spent awards day at the hospital meeting with ortho or neuro surgeons that were planning to cut on his back. So this year, he final year of middle school, we spent in a 2.5 hour awards assembly. I am so very proud of S and the many awards and recognitions she received today. I cannot believe that she will be starting high school next year. It blows my mind. The awards assembly, however, was 2.5 hours long. I think people were on the verge of calling for take out before the thing was over...especially the students. Jeepers. We all had the jimmy legs before it was all over with I think.

Regardless, I am so very proud of S and all she has accomplished. She is so very smart and talented, but most of all, just an all around nice young woman. I am honored and humbled to be her mom.

Night all.

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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Long day, need Griffith

It has been a long day of work and family obligations. Nothing new, but just a long day. School is almost over and I still need to get teacher gifts and last minute things together...but it'll get done. We went, this afternoon, to a birthday party for three of my cousins who all have birthdays very close together. It was a Wizard of Oz themed party with every detail imagined, down to the "Kansas Tornado" snacks(Bugles) and pom pom poppies placed in the backyard. The rain didn't dampen anyones' spirits and just provided the water play needed on a muggy afternoon.

Tomorrow is awards day for S. Her last of middle school...but I don't want to talk about it. That way I can pretend she is little for a bit longer even though she is so not. Oh well. Sniff sniff.  I'm going to go drown my sadness in some episodes of Andy Griffith.  He makes everything better.

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Saturday, May 16, 2015

Road rash on a scooter

Today was G's 5th grade party. It was their last hurrah celebration before summer comes and they sporadically see each other. It was held at a local park. They had the run of the place with all kinds of food and drinks and activities. The hub was out of town for the day at a soccer tourney with S, so the boy came with me. This park is a favorite of ours and a frequent scootering spot for the kids. He has a Razor scooter...nothing fancy, just two wheels and a lot of fun. Did several runs down a little hill that he has been on a hundred times. I guess the 101st time is the bad luck charm, because he came up to me and my friend A as we were discussing life and church and children. He was dragging his poor Razor behind him. He wasn't crying, but had a pained look on his face. After we took a look at his poor little elbow, we both agrred it looked painful:

The above picture is post shower which involved a fair amount of screaming. Bless his heart. In a little bit, I will rewrap it so it won't ooze all over his bed. Sorry. Gross but true. When I asked him how fast he was going, he estimated a good "40 to 50 MPH". So just beware if you get on a razor. That road rash rash is a pain. By the way, he also has it on both knees and his hip area where the waistband of his boxers were. Thank the good Lord helmets are not an option in our house and he had it on. Jeepers, kid.
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Friday, May 15, 2015

Full heart

Today was the 5th grade awards day and graduation at G's school. I was a wreck. Nerves get the best of me every time, especially when my children are involved. Awards days have always been hard for me and I have talked about it before. I have been blessed with parents who have been involved inmy schooling and activities. They wanted to help, showed up to school when needed and cheered me and my brother on in our different ventures. But for every kid like me and mine who have involved grown ups in their lives, there are three who don't. There are children who sit at every awards ceremony with no one to cheer them on and snap a photo or send out an embarrassing "WOOHOO" when their name is called. There are also children who may have an adult there, but never have their name called for anything. We have had our years, many years, where the biggest award they get is the made up ones their teachers give out in their classroom to everybody. Nothing wrong with those at all...but there is something about being recognized in front of all of your peers in a very public way. Two hundred pats on the back so to speak. So on days like today, when my good natured tortoise(slow and steady wins the race)was given the recognition that she so desperately craved and torturously worked for, it is a bittersweet feeling. Hopeful little faces waiting to hear their names called, only to sink into disappointment once again. I'll be honest, I wanted to cheer out loud when she was recognized as the winner of school award voted on by the staff. I didn't, which cheated my girl out of getting to see my sheer joy at her accomplishments. I will say this and I said it to her, I am beyond proud. She has fought through her learning differences. She has made herself available to help and learn from others. She has loved the difficult and assisted the ungrateful...and all with a smile. I couldn't be more proud of her. She is middle school bound and there isn't a darn thing I can do about it. That's how it is supposed to be.

I am grateful for days like this to show my child that she is doing the right thing and is worth something to people. I am grateful to her teacher who found a switch in her, flipped it and set a fire in her belly. I am just grateful.

Grace and her teacher. She's married to a Miami fan, but the Hokies in our house won't hold that against her.
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Thursday, May 14, 2015

Eve of a big day

Tomorrow is G's 5th grade awards day. My stomach is sick for mulitple reasons. Sick with worry that she will get an award...any award. She wants so badly to have some sort of "attagirl". Something. She did win the essay contest and her Wahington trip iis paid for and that should really be plenty. But who doesn't enter an awards ceremony hoping against hope for something? As her parent, I do. At the same time, she never has to win a single award and she will still be tops in my book. I will always be proud of the girl she has become. The other reason my tummy is sick is that time has flown so quickly. Just yesterday, it seems, she was walking into school with her new little shoes, pigtails and a brand new pink LL Bean backpack. She was ready to tear it up. She will be entering a whole new situation in August. She'll be a middle schooler and that makes me queasy. She'll survive in spite of us all I know. I just can't believe she is so grown up.

But I am proud of that girl and the young lady she has become. Love you, sweet G.

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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

I lived a Seinfeld episode today

First, let me make a statement before I go any further: I am not a xenophobe of any type. I hope that I am open to people of all countries. We can all learn a lot from people who are different from us. With that being said, here we go.

During all the dance prep last week, S got to go and have a mani-pedi to look fancy for the dance. Most of the nail salon work is done in house, so we let the professionals take care of her this time. G had soccer and other things going on, so she missed out on the rare opportunity to get her nails done. I told her that I would take her for her turn this week before her 5th grade graduation/awards day. Today was the day, so we went to the nail salon. First off, bless those people. Inhaling those fumes and scrubbing people's feet and dealing with their nails and unwanted facial hair...bless them. I have had a total of two pedicures in my life. Today's and one more. My feet are not my best feature, so I went in already feeling self conscious. G was too preoccupied with the massage chair to care what anyone thought of her nice looking feet. The guy who worked on my feet and the girl who worked on G's feet started chatting in their language. He attacked my foot with an implement that felt like weasels were ripping my flesh(thanks Frank Zappa). I swear I have seen some of the instruments he had used on the Food Network grating cheese, zesting lemons or grating nutmeg. Then he pointed to my baby toe, looked at the lady and said something in their language...they had a big laugh. What? I know my "Wee wee wee" piggie is kind of weird, but what did they say? When they found out G was 10 instead of the 13 that they thought, they said, "BIG girl...hahaha!". So then I was in pain and G was deep into body image issues while getting daisies painted on her big toes. It all ended up okay, I guess. I just wish I had a friend with me who spoke that language and could translate. Wait...maybe I don't.

Either way, her toes looked cute...and those people had a right to mock my toes. They deserve it.

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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Field Day numero dos

So day two at least started off quite a bit milder than day one did. Tent city made the sun's advances not so lethal and the kids not quite so tortured. My boy was fired UP about his events and he and his friends were ready to go. As in everyone's life, we all have seasons of successes and seasons of learning. For the most part, this year's field day was one of learning for the boy's class. They all had heart, just not a whole lot of speed. They had some quality speed, but just not enough. Here's the best part...they could have come in 55,000th place(they came in third out of three)...but the fact that they won 1st place in the tug o war made the third place overall a non issue. My son's face was so ripped with determination, it was excellent. Those kids pulled with all of their might, blistered up their hands and probably ruined their voal chords from screaming. The video is excellent of the boy and his friends embracing and jumping on each others' backs. If I just had those parents' permission, I would post that thing in a heartbeat. I was so proud of all of them, working together, cheering for their friends and taking their overall finish like champs. At that age, they really all want to win, well at any age we want to win. They had heart...and that was a win in my book.

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Monday, May 11, 2015

Field Day numero uno

The 10yr old had her last field day of her elementary career today. Kid of sad, but she went out on a good note. Her class performed well, cheered on other classes and were pretty darn well behaved I must say. I enjoyed my time listening to the girls and boys chatter on with each other. They are funny creatures these fifth graders. Still kids, but awfully grown up. I am glad I brought my soccer tent, along with some other parents, because the field day track area seemed to be the same temperature as that of the face of the sun. We all managed to stay relatively unburnt and somewhat comfortable. I didn't get too emotional this afternoon when it was over...I think I was so dehydrated that I physically could not make tears, but I had the lump in my throat and the knot in my stomach. But G has had a good run this year. She's worked hard and her work has been paying off and she sees that. I am so glad she is ending her year on a good note, even with a field day first place win for her class. Tomorrow will be field day part two. With a group of 2nd graders, the outcome may be a little different, but it will be just as interesting.

Tune in tomorrow....

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Sunday, May 10, 2015

I love this gig....

Happy Mother's Day out there to my three gentle readers! It has been a lovely day here...there's nothing like a warm Spring day in East Tennessee. My children gave me such lovely and thoughtful cards and gifts they had made, along with a new half sheet pan and an Adirondack chair for the patio that I have coveted for many years. I know it sounds completely fake and yucky, but I truly don't need any gifts on this day as my children are gifts that I can never ever deserve and can never thank God enough for them in my life. I consider it the highest of honors to be a mother. Their grace and strength amaze me every year.

My two requests were as follows:

1. Have a hamburger expertly grilled by my husband.
2. Go see the new Avengers movie.

When I gave the second request on the list, my son jumped up and yelled, "HAPPY MOTHER"S DAY TO THAT!!". I'm glad my request was popular. And, yes, go ahead and judge me for taking an 8 year old to a PG-13 movie. I read all the websites and knew when to cover eyes and plug up ears. He loved every second of it. It was pretty darn entertaining.

The hub did indeed grill a fine meal including his excellent burgers and grilled squash/zucchini in garlic butter. Perfecto all the way! S made a lovely dessert of strawberry shortcakes. The youngers helped clean up. A wonderful end to a lovely day.

I am thankful for my mother and as I add more years under my mothering belt, I realize how very thankful I am for her. I wish all of those of you who are mothers, relatives and friends who act as mothers, fathers who have to be the mother role as well and those who have lost their mothers a wonderfully happy Mother's Day. We are all blessed women!

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Saturday, May 9, 2015

Too fast....

Busy day at the ranch today. The hub was on soccer duty and I was on dance and house and yard duty. Five games between two kids has them wiped out at this point. Three wins and two losses with kids that are still smiling. Fine by me. A dad who is exhausted, but a saint.

My oldest went to her first major school dance tonight. She had a great time and danced plenty of blisters onto her sparkly sandaled feet. She showed me the pictures of all of her different friends and they all looked so lovely and grown up. I can't believe it. All of my babies are growing up and it kills me. But they are growing up into really nice kids and I cannot complain about that. I am truly grateful for all of them. Truly.

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Friday, May 8, 2015

Musical night

We had an evening full of music at the oldest's band concert, her last band concert mind you. I cannot believe she will be a high schooler next year. Can-not believe it. It is always entertaining to watch these concerts. I can remember clearly, you've heard this story before, playing the theme to "Dallas" when I was in 6th grade. We had our fingers on the pulse, America. By eighth grade, we were playing selectons from Aaron Copland's "Appalachian Spring". We probably butchered it, but our cigarette breathed band director set his jaw in a wicked kind of permagrin and endured every out of tune horn and off beat percussionist. He probably dashed out afterwards and smoked a few to get his nerves back, but we were all super proud of ourselves when we heard that applause from our parents. I am so glad that S has found joy in making music. It has always been one of my passions never realized. I can't wait to see what her future holds and what G's holds as she begins band in August. It will certainly be exciting!

Night all.

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Thursday, May 7, 2015

One tired tomato

I am a tired girl like everybody else at this time of night. My workout was a bit strenuos and I did a lot of lunges. The hub will probably have to assist me in my exit from the bed tomorrow. Afterwards, I planted a whole mess of tomato plants and, unfortunately, did not even finish. Tomorrow will be more maters, cukes, peppers and one eggplant(for fun). Too bad I did not have video cameras pointed at me this evening. It was definitely a comedy show to watch me try and get up off the floor. Curse you, lunges. I thought squats were most evil, but I was terribly least today. Oh well. Between the lunges and the planting, I will be a mess tomorrow. But I will be equipped this summer with multitudes of tomatoes if they all work out. Salsa, spaghetti sauce and heartburn for everyone! Night all!!

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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Another musical in the books

We had our end of the school year music program tonight at church. It was entertaining as always and a bit of a sad one this time. It was G's last performance in her Off Broadway Kids group. She has had quite a run with them and quite a lot of fun. Her director has been wonderful and so very patient with all of them. The boy also sang tonight. His group really did an amazing job singing and I was so very proud of all of them. Brought tears to my eyes for sure.

I am so tired and unable to form clear sentences, but I am grateful for the performances this evening and also grateful that it is over. That may sound awful, but I think they are all relieved.

Night all.

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Tuesday, May 5, 2015


I woke up not feeling so great this morning. I hadn't slept well and I felt quite queasy. Thankfully I have a very understanding boss and workplace who kindly let me duck out of staff meeting and try to sleep off whatever woke up with me. I napped between loads of laundry. Took a quick trip to the grocery for essentials and then took another nap. Then I did a really stupid thing. I mowed the lawn. Tuesday has become my new day to mow and I felt the need to get it done even though I had no business being out there. It is ow complete and I also got my three blue planters filled with herbs, tomatoes and bell peppers. The garden beds will be filled on Thursday. Then comes the waiting for the bounty to come in. The boy is already planning recipes. First up? Gazpacho. Next? Pickles. He's got some big plans. We'll see what we can do.

Tomorrow is the last Wednesday night program until Fall. The two youngers will be singing and I will probably be crying. It will be G's last performance with her singing/drama group. It has been a great ride. Now she'll move on up to youth choir. Sniff...time flies and I am not ready.

Night all.

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Monday, May 4, 2015

Can I run away?

12th graders get "Senioritis" as do 4th year graduating students in college. I think my 13 year old has "8th grade-itis" and my 10 year old has "5th grade-itis". The boy just goes with the flow, God bless him. I have determined that I have "Mom at the end of the year-itis". Everything is getting me angry. No, it is not a female thing. I am just feeling quite evil and spiteful and I need to stop. I told my oldest today that if I could I would scoop the family up and move to a completely different city and not tell anyone where we had gone. Just disappear and start new. That sounds heavenly right now. Absolutely heavenly. Maybe someday, but now I have to get them through the end of the year. Then we will have some summer fun I hope.

Say a little prayer for safety for my G and her fifth grade buddies. They are taking a reward trip to Biltmore tomorrow. Makes me a bit nervous, but I know they will have a great time.

Night all.

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Sunday, May 3, 2015

I stink...I admit it

When the hub and I were in college, we had a very good friend who was studying Animal Science...concentrating in swine I think. He was quite the ladies' man, a cute Hawaiian farm boy, who always freely gave hugs to everyone. His favorite time to give hugs, especially to the squeamish girly girls, was when he had just left his duties with the pigs and was covered with their very pungent bouquet. He was so darn loveable, you wanted to punch him, hug him and get the stench off all at the same time. I also have farmers in my family and spent some summers with my great aunt and uncle outside of Chicago on their pig farm. I am not too good to get "stanky". Today the boy and I cleaned out all the garden beds and surrounding pea gravel, spread 13 bags of soil and covered all the beds with landscaping cloth to prevent the nasty weeds. Yes, it was a Sunday and a day of rest. We went to church and then had our restful, relaxing time with the beautful earth God created for us. It was nice...but. I have worked with various and sundry forms of organic material. I have smelled some rank stuff. Today's topsoil smelled like a hug from our pig farmer friend. After carrying several of those bags, I started to smell like him myself. Our trip home from the store with the bags was very humorous. All the windows were down and we had our heads partially out the windows to try and catcha whiff of fresh air. It was brutal. I took the equivalent of about 17 showers if you measure how much soap I used to scrub that stench off of myself. I think it is in my nose and my pores. I can't get it out. If you pass me tomorrow or give me a hug, hold your breath. I just can't tell if the stank is all gone. Half a bar of Dial would indicate a "yes", but who knows. Either way, we are ready to receive some veggie plants now:

Don't be jealous. You are getting the elegant HVAC view. That's an expensive view.

Night all.

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Saturday, May 2, 2015

Grillin' and Racin'

It is late and I am burnt and tired from yet another long day of soccering. Our organization hosted a "play day", so we had to have snacks and provide all the refs and AR's and all that business. I was the grillmeister for theday. Dogs and burgers were my specialty as well as chili-ing and cheese-ing the nachos. Honestly, I would be okay if it was a long time before I have to be on grill duty again for a while. We also watched and wagered on the Kentucky Derby. Needless to say, the names I picked out of the hat were all long shots for good reason.

I am now going to hit the hay because work is coming early tomorrow. Time to slather my Chaco burn with aloe. Ouch.

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Friday, May 1, 2015

Unwanted Lazy Day

No one welcomes their alarm clock's ring in the morning and no one rejoices in waking up to the sound of "I threw up in my bed!". We got such a wake up call at 4am from our poor boy. The usual steps went into action:

1. Get the boy cleaned up.(Sanitize hands)
2. Remove the sheets without waking up sister or breathing in the stench.(Take time to gag/sanitize)
3. Take sheets to washer.(Take time to gag/sanitize)
4. Locate "sick" mattress.
5. Locate "sick" sheets.
6. Find bunches of Kroger bags and trash cans and a garbage bag.
7. Make sick bed.
8. Put boy in sick bed.(Sanitize)
9. Attempt to go back to sleep knowing the barf is coming again.

To his credit, he isolated the barf to a certain area. It was an episode that did not require him to have a shower to get stuff out of his hair, etc. He waited for two and half hours until he got sick again and he was awake and able to grab his trash can. The hub took the girls to school and made a Kroger run for bouillon, saltines, ginger ale and some jello. For the rest of the day, I tried to supply his tummy with the appropriate nourishment without making it terribly sick. We watched multiple episodes of Andy Griffith and The Avengers. Then he got home and I tagged out and went to the Festival on the Hill at S's school with G. It was nice to be outside for a bit of time, visiting with teachers and other parents.

A little bit ago, our friend Mr. Ed came over to borrow my sewing machine. He is one of our favorite humans on this planet and by far one of the most entertaining. After belly laughing at his stories and listening to him try out my new ukulele, he left and we went upstairs to relax. We are sure praying for an uneventful night with no more barf. Night all.

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