Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The coolest chick from my high school days...

I got to see an old friend of mine from high school yesterday.  Old as in "from before"...not old as in "decrepit". Just to be clear.  It had been many years since we'd last visited each other, 15 to be exact. She was my best friend in school, and the coolest chick around.

Sitting with her on my back porch, talking about what we used to do, people we went to school with, what's been happening since our graduation in 19*cough, cough*...was so much fun.

We laughed about her perfect hand with liquid eyeliner, and teenage knowledge of which brands you could wear for days at a time, remembered how we ate nothing but empty carbs and crap and still wore size 6's, spoke of her mother (who has passed away, and I'm so sorry), and my brother...who was a rugrat when we used to hang out, and developed a brain tumor at the age of 19 (and survived!). We basically covered 20-something years of separation in the couple of hours she was here, and I wished it could have been longer.

Next time it will definitely be a longer visit...and will include some sort of key lime pie-ice cream thingy, covered in chocolate...she swears it's amazing.

I love you, Deb. You are fab-u-lous.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Finally learning what a father should be...

Father's Day is a holiday I never really celebrated until I became a mother...go figure.  I was never close with the men in my life growing birth father, or the man that became my father after he married my mom. I never really understood what a father was supposed to do or be.

I learned about fatherhood from the man that I married. He came from a large family, 7 siblings, not including "step-siblings" and was enamored with every niece and nephew that came into his life.  He loved the noise and chaos that came from every family get-together, and was always outside running with the little kids, instead of sitting inside with the "grown-ups".  I remember sitting on the couch with my sister-in-law and laughing every time hubby would run past the window with a slew of  kiddos chasing him through the yard.

We had our first baby when hubby turned 25, and then another three more within the next 10 years. Wow! That's alot of kids, right? But just two days ago he asked me... "Wouldn't it be nice to have just one more?"

This man has taught me what a dad really is. His sons love to hang out with him, go places with him, play video games and paintball with him.  Hubby has spoken with the boys often, using words like: "respect", "integrity", "responsibility", and "love". He kisses and hugs them, even as they get older...Oldest Boy sobbed when his dad hugged him at the graduation ceremony.  He has showed them what it means to love a wife, and has always been affectionate with me in front of them.

I am so grateful that my sons DO know what a father is supposed to do and be, and I am certain that they will grow into marvelous fathers as well...being taught by one of the best.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Fatigue and the quest for perfect parties!

I'm exhausted...I woke up is it 7am, and I'm already tired?!

Actually, I know the answer to that question, and if you guessed "Your pregnant?!" just go ahead and wash your mouth out with soap right now.  I'll wait...

I have been working on Middle Boy's 16th birthday party preparations for the last couple of days. Now that Oldest Boy's graduation is done, it's time to move on to the next "big thing" around here. You know, if you think about it, there are 6 of us in this house...even if you ONLY celebrate birthday's each year (and there is always more stuff going on than just birthdays), I'm still committed to doing something at least every other month.  It can be exhausting.

Milestone birthdays are huge for me...Hubby's 40th birthday included a cook-out/pool party with a dunk tank and a movie I made for him detailing our history together.  Oldest Boy's 16th party was luau themed, with surfboards and fishing nets and a cake in the shape of a beach house.  The same child had a costume party when he turned 18, with custom printed candy bars, and cobwebs hanging from every chandelier and picture frame.

When I say "party", I mean "party".

Middle Boy requested a casino theme for his party tomorrow night. We will have two separate tables running tomorrow, one huge poker table that my husband will run, and one blackjack table that I will run...with Oldest Boy filling in when potty breaks are required (or when I have to pay the pizza guy).

I have TONS of casino decor to hang in my house, everything red and black...balloons, streamers, etc.  I have automatic card shufflers for both tables, 1,000 poker chips (no lie!) and dealer costumes for the three adults to wear...I'll definitely post a picture.  Buying a full sheet cake with just the writing on it, and then decorating it with casino things I've's going to be amazing.

In the meantime, I've been mopping floors, cleaning glass, washing blankets and pillows (many of these kids will sleep here tomorrow night), and stocking up on AA batteries for the Xbox 360 controllers. I have even pressure washed the pool deck and cleaned out the never know who will dig in your fridge at 2am after you've gone to bed.

This party is going to be really great! I just hope I don't collapse in my fancy new dealer suit...

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Trying to look at the positives...tired of the negatives.

I have a ton of stuff that I need to get done around here in the next couple of days...Middle Boy is having his 16th birthday party here on Wednesday night. It's "Casino Night", and we have a poker table and a blackjack table ready to go...along with 50 million decorations, including dealer costumes for Dad and I (and Oldest Boy) to wear. Should be fun, he's excited, and I'm excited for him...

Frustrated though that in spite of that, I'm feeling so down this morning. And I hate to post about things that are sad...I try to be encouraging and uplifting...but maybe I require the uplifting today, I don't know.

A close family member and I haven't spoken in almost two years...August will be two years. The last time I saw him was at my grandmother's funeral...he has ignored me since then.  I have called and written, and nothing. My kids have sent cards to him...still nothing. When I sent him an invitation to Oldest Boy's graduation, I put a note in there saying "Oldest Boy is really hoping that he will hear from you, you are greatly missed around here."

Did Oldest Boy hear from him? Nope.   Is my kid hurt by that? Yep.   Does that tick me off? You betcha.

We used to be really close, when Oldest Boy & Middle Boy were in elementary school, we used to see him often, and get cards, etc. from him. The kids adored him.

I am the queen of "Focus on those that love you."...."You have a million people who care about you."....."This is something wrong with (fill in name of hurtful person), it has nothing to do with you."   So why is this bothering me so freaking much?

I really do try to teach my sons that they can only control their own reactions, not the actions of others. I think it's a self-preservation technique really...I mean, you could go crazy wondering why someone doesn't love you, or care...but what good does that do?  I'm always telling them to be the best person they can, and let the hurtful stuff roll off them.... Why is it so hard to practice what I preach? 

I'm going to spend my day working on stuff for the party...focusing on this Middle Boy that I love so much...looking at the positives...hoping it helps.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

"To shave or not to shave" or "Why must you drive your Momma crazy?"

On a side note:

As I'm writing my last post about Oldest Boy's graduation ceremony, I get a phone call from Middle Boy.  Today was his last day of school, and he's hanging out with some of the guys on his crew team, at one of the boy's houses.  Here's how the call went:

Me:  "Hey Middle Boy, what's up?"
MB:  "Is it okay if I shave my head?"
Me:  "Um...what?"
MB:  "We were all going to shave our heads.  Well, actually, so & so is going to shave an arrow on the top of his head, but I'm thinking I'll probably just shave mine the same length everywhere."
Me:  "What about your big birthday party next week? I was planning on taking pictures?!"
MB:  "Well, let me see how so & so's hair looks, and then I'll decide what I want to do."

Now, I live in what I would call a "Hair Household". We all take our hair pretty seriously around here, there's enough bottles of product to fill our swimming pool out back.  For a child of mine to say he's going to shave his head...well, it's a pretty shocking proposition, it's just not something we do. Ever.... We. Never. Do. It.

Please Lord, don't let them shave a birthday cake onto Middle Boy's head...

Graduation ceremony, and a momma trying not to cry.

It's been a whirlwind since I've last been able to post.  Oldest Boy graduated from high school last Saturday. It was a great ceremony, at the sports arena by us, 600 or so kids in the group.

Grandma (Mom-mom) came and so did Auntie, along with a couple of my girlfriends...(Oldest Boy has several "moms" that keep him in line - lucky kid), we had a pretty good-sized group.  When we sat down we were looking through the program, and saw about six valedictorians.  You could hear everyone in the seats...glancing at the program...all saying "Six?! Are you freaking kidding?! Omg, how long are we going to be sitting here??!"  I envisioned a screaming bladder (mine), and two small children climbing the walls (also mine).  I guess they were told to make it snappy with the speeches, because each one only lasted about two minutes.  Perfect, if you ask me.

And of course, they say, "Only applaud during such and such times"....and you KNOW I still yelled, albeit briefly, when they said my kid's name.  So much for setting a good example for the kiddies.

Hard to believe he's done...I can so clearly remember the day that he started kindergarten, and how I cried then, too.  It's been a tough couple of days for me, very bittersweet.

I love you, kiddo...more than I can ever say.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A post to make YOU feel better about your stinky morning...

You're welcome.

If you think you are having a bad, allow me to help you feel better about it, by telling you about mine.

My morning started with sunshine and birdsong.  Just kidding, it started in the pitch-black of 3:30 a.m., with me waking up in bed, worrying over money, school scheduling, insurance issues, birthday party to-do lists, and hunger pains (because I ate egg whites for dinner again last night).

After spending a couple of hours paying some bills, and trying to find casino decorations online (birthday party), I started to get everyone up for work and school.  As I'm running around the house like an asylum escapee, I hear a loud, weird sound in the kitchen. I walked in there briefly and didn't see anything but the cat, so I just figured it was him getting into something on the countertop, which he does when I'm not looking.

The next time I came through the kitchen, I actually turned the light on and looked towards my pantry...a bottle of butterscotch liqueur had fallen from the top shelf, hitting the tile floor and exploding into THREE different, dining room and laundry room.  This bottle shattered into amazingly minuscule pieces, and when mixed with sticky butterscotch libation, stuck to walls, baseboards, doors, you name it. 

Oh, and did I mention that it took out a bottle of olive oil I had on the floor of the pantry? Yeah, liqueur AND olive oil, poured out in my pantry, soaking into everything else I had stored there.

Have you ever had to clean up something that was so mind-boggling you didn't know where to start? (Remind me to tell you about the time Little Boy smeared Desitin all over the dark blue carpet.)  This was one of those jobs. Lots of hot water, 1 1/2 rolls of paper towels...I'm sighing as I type this.

And then there's this:

No kids, that's not a jewel encrusted pink apron for Mommy, that's my glass shard infested of three like that, that were hanging on the wall across from my pantry.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Middle Boy and his monstrous shoulders...

Middle Boy turned 16 yesterday. He went with some friends to Disney World, came home to some grilled steak and cupcakes.

He was my biggest baby, *cue nightmarish delivery story*  9 pounds, 11 ounces...and a couple of weeks early.  He was my only child that had a "shoulder delivery" as well as a "head delivery" mother-in-law, standing at the foot of the bed during the delivery said:   "You had a toddler!"

I had gone into the doctor's office for my checkup, and my blood pressure was through the roof (a common occurrence for me) and I was showing signs of preeclampsia. The doctor informed me that I wouldn't be going home at all that day, that a hospital bed had been saved for me, and to get my butt into it.  I called hubby at work and said "You need to go home, pack my things, and meet me at the hospital."  Of course, he thought I was kidding, poor guy.  (I hadn't packed anything yet, wasn't anticipating having the baby early...oops.)

The doctor started the induction, and again, a phone call to hubby's office:  "Really honey, you need to come now, he broke my water." 

In hubby's defense, my first delivery started on a Friday morning with an induction, with the child finally being born on Sunday naturally, he's thinking (we both did) "I've got time.".

Turns out, he did have time. Time to go home and pack stuff...time to eat a couple of meals...time to wonder just how he was going to afford paying the college tuition for these kids....

And then, there Middle Boy was. He only required a small convention of doctors and cheerleaders, some help from a suction-thingy...and threats made to a mom (by a loving sister-in-law) who was so exhausted from delivering his huge head, she wanted to quit before his shoulders made it out.

This child is a blessing to me in every way. He is an athlete of the highest integrity, he works very hard in school and he's always wanting me to make him a sandwich.

I adore him.