Thursday, July 28, 2011

The boy is out of the doghouse, he finally called home!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

I'm on day 9,567 of no air in the van - well, not really. It's only been a couple of weeks but it feels more like years. I'm doing a lot of sweating (whoever said "girls don't sweat they glisten" .... LIED!),  my hair looks like a tangled web of straw, and I'm oh, so very cranky. For those of you who find it hard to believe I can be any crankier than usual, just ask the guys in my life. They'll quickly tell you that a no-A/C- Sherri is a thousand times worse than menopausal-Sherri. My only response .... GRRRRRR!

Meanwhile I'm trying to come up with ways to keep cool while driving around. I dress as skimpily as I can get away with without getting arrested or making people throw up. I've bought all kinds of hair barrettes and rubber bands to try and keep my hair in place or at least stop it from slapping me in the eyes with it's loose ends. I never leave home without a bottle of water, but am constantly fighting the urge to substitute it with an adult drink that just might take my mind off my situation but would also create a whole 'nuther dilemma, being illegal and all.

And finally, I'm cutting out all non-essential driving, which in and of itself is a good thing financially. No more unnecessary trips to the grocery store. No meeting friends for lunch. No spur of the moment runs to Michaels or Hobby Lobby. I do, however, draw the line at giving up my weekly lunch treat at Chick-fil-A ... some things are just too sacred.

I'm sure everyone is wondering just how long they're going to have to hear(read) me whining about poor, poor me and my awful, desperate situation. Well the answer to that is TOO LONG! According to these guys, there's no chance of significant change until at least October. Yes, I said OCTOBER, that month that is at least 65 days away. Oh my, you might as well lock me up now, 'cause I'm pretty sure this could be a sanity-losing couple of months.

According to the weather channel guys I'm living in the wrong place right now. Their map says there are two spots with cooler than normal temps. One would be Florida where cooler than normal could be something ridiculous like 90* instead of 95..... both of which is still too stinkin' hot for riding sans A/C. It's the other spot that has me really steaming, and that would be the Pacific coastline. As in California, Oregon, and Washington. Knowing this has really stuck in my craw because guess who has a son, her first born, living the life of Riley in cool Seattle Washington?

Yes, that would be me. Hot, cranky, menopausal, Sherri, who today is seeing this

and Ian (or "N" as his grandmother insists on calling him) is seeing this . Let me tell you, if I had known how this summer was going to play out I would have signed up for working at camp. I grew up going to camps so I'm pretty sure I could have figured out how to pull my weight there. (alrighty, no fat jokes here, got that?). He must be having a good time 'cause we never hear from him, in fact the only evidence that he's still alive and kicking is the occasional Facebook photo post from one of his friends and an email from AT&T that his phone is getting ready to max out on data use. What a life.

If only I would have known, I would have tagged along to Camp Sambica, and me and my boy could have hung out together all summer long. Can you imagine how fun that would have been .... And cool, oh - so cool!

Ahahahaha, I can see him now, rolling his eyes and thanking the good Lord that I am NOT in Washington. He's also thinking the heat has really gotten to me and that I've lost what little sanity I had left.

Oh, who am I kidding. He's not reading my blog. Because if he were he'd be calling home right now checking up on his mama. And you know what? My phone's NOT ringing!

Don't worry, I'm ok (sniff, sniff), only seventeen more days and the boy will home. Back to Hotlanta, eatin' mama's home cooking, and chauffeuring her around in his air conditioned car ... the one sitting in the driveway .... the one that mama doesn't know how to drive ...

Oops, I guess that little tidbit just lost me the sympathy vote, huh? 

Monday, July 25, 2011

New Look and New Stuff

I've made some changes in my blog and I bet most of you haven't even noticed. Up at the top under my blog name you'll see three tabs . One says HOME and keeps you on my main page. The other two, Crafting and Photo take you to separate pages where you will find links to my newest blogs and their entries.

Yes, I've created two more blogs! From the Craftier Side of SAIDFRAZ will be all about what I am doing creatively, whether it be projects of my own or those of others that I am following. The third blog Fotos from SAIDFRAZ will contain photographs that I want to share with my readers where I think the picture says it all, little or no words necessary.

You can keep track of my new blogs in one of two ways. Easiest is to become a follower and add me to your Reader List or, you can regularly click on the Crafting and Photos pages and click on one of the links that will be added any time I write a new blog entry.

Hopefully you'll find Crafting and Photos to your liking, remember both are new and somewhat of a work(s) in progress. Any and all feedback is welcome.

Meanwhile, enjoy and thanks for checking me out!

oops, how embarrassing

I accidentally followed myself on my blog - how vain does that look??

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Unwanted Vistor

Last night we experienced a home invasion. It happened around 3am and was committed by a lone culprit. I'm not sure how he got in but he went out in a body bag - I killed him!

Ok, now that I have your attention let me fill in the details.

I am a night owl who rarely goes to bed before one a.m. I usually stay up late watching TV and surfing the internet. Last night was no exception other than it was closer to two before I finally shut off the computer and climbed into bed. The later than normal lights-out was more than likely due to the two glasses of sweet tea I drank at lunch. One would think there had been plenty of time for the caffeine to work its way out of my system but at 1:00 a.m. I was still wide away. Finally around two, knowing I needed to be up in six hours, I forced myself to shut down.

I tossed and turned for a bit and was finally drifting into the Land of Nod when I heard a sound. The sound appeared to be coming from the direction of the door which I had my back to. I turned and halfway opened an eye.  All I saw was a small black form that appeared to be inching towards me.

I guess I should explain to those who don't know me that without my glasses I am blind as a bat. I'm so near-sighted that I find it hard to distinguish details and features. And, even though I'd only been asleep a short while, I was pretty groggy. Consequently as far as I was concerned there was a menacing black blob coming my way and it appeared to have glowing green eyes. And the sounds, oh the sounds that were coming from it sent chills up my spine.

At that point my brain clicked on and I was instantly aware that the blob was in fact my cat. But the sound, what was that sound? It was NOT coming from the cat but did in fact draw her into the room. Spunky was running and jumping all over the place and it instantly became apparent she was chasing something, something that was flying back and forth from wall to wall, from ceiling to floor and back again.

I jumped out of bed and Spunky darted out of the room leaving me alone to conquer the enemy. But first I needed to determine what exactly the enemy was and .... where did "it" go? There it was on the ceiling darting between the blades of the ceiling fan. Whatever it was, it was huge. And fast. And .... where did it go again?

I decided the best plan of attack was to put on my glasses so I could actually see what I was fighting, and I needed a weapon. It would also be helpful if I had a partner in fighting crime. Obviously the cat was out, she had already abandoned the scene. Next I turned to my husband, soundly sleeping, emitting a gently snore. That's what I needed ... a knight in shining armor.

That idea was quickly scratched, in fact I almost laughed out loud. I love my man, he's the light of my life, but ... he does not fight home intruders (unless he's fighting in his sleep and then he becomes all kung-fu-fighter- man, remind me to tell you that story sometime). But when it comes to intruders that fly and crawl .... forget it! My big hunk of man becomes a squeamish girlie-man that runs the other way. Oh wait, there was that one time, when a BAT wandered into our kitchen, hubby came through that time. He captured the bat in a laundry basket and very quickly deposited it outside. His moment of shining glory.

Back to my dilemma, I decided the best course of action would be to get a weapon and go into attack mode on my own. I went to the kitchen and came back with the best thing I could find. No, not a gun or knife, a FLY SWATTER. Yep, one of these. I am woman-warrior hear me roar!

Except there was no roaring. After all it was 3 am and my honey was sleeping so I was trying to be as quiet as I possibly could, which wasn't all that easy considering I was invader hunting in darkness. I tip-toed back in the room armed with my swatter waiting for the opportunity to take down the flying-bouncing-from-wall-to-ceiling critter that interrupted my beauty sleep. And wouldn't you know it, he was gone! Not a wing, antenna, or hairy leg to be seen.

This was too good to be true, right? Was it possible that my intruder decided on his own that this was a mistake, he had the wrong house, and left as quickly and quietly as he entered? Probably not but I can hope. I sat on the end of the bed and waited.

Five minutes went by and neither hide nor hair of him.

Another five minutes ... nothing.

Ever the optimist I tossed my weapon aside and gently crawled back into bed. Hubby snorted, turned over, and never cracked an eye. Cautiously I closed mine and willed myself to go back to sleep.

Wait, did you hear that? No? What, that? Yes, THAT! It's like being in a pinball machine. PING! PING! DING! PING!

My intruder was back and he was in rare form. I couldn't decide if I should just pull the covers over my had and hope he would go away or if I should return to defense mode. Hiding, that's a good idea, but what if he found a way to get under the covers? What if he decided to heck with warrior woman, I'll go after Mr McSnory here. Would it be wrong to leave my defenseless husband open to an attack from the enemy?

Darn it, defense mode it is. I jumped up, covered my head with my pillow (really didn't want that thing dive bombing into my hair), and took the warrior stance. And then I started swing my weapon anywhere and everywhere.

Ai Ya!

Bulls eye! I made contact and the icky, giant invader bounced into the chair beside the bed. I followed up with a quick one-two chop and there he lay .... defeated.

And then in darkness of my room, I saw the faint wiggle of a leg, or two or three. MY gosh will this thing never die? One more swat and he bounced onto the floor. I grabbed a tissue and picked him all. It wasn't easy because he was huge .... and icky .... and dead,

but me,

I was a brave, warrior-woman and I was not about to let a huge, icky invader defeat me. What better way to finally off the buggar than a burial at sea, or the next best thing ... into the tidy bowl he went.

In the light of the bathroom I finally got a look at my invader. Ewww, gross - a Palmetto bug. aka COCKROACH! Gross, I think I just about tossed my cookies.


And, not just any cockroach but 3-inch long, flying. icky. nasty. cockroach. GROSS

Would you like to know the worse part about the whole thing? I had to face this enemy alone. My husband was blissfully snoozing ten feet away, completely unaware of the danger he narrowly missed. How unfair that he missed out on the whole ordeal. I know, let's save him a reminder.

I put that nasty little invader in the loo but I didn't flush him! I just gently closed the lid, turned out the bathroom light, and climbed back into bed. Finally, peace and quiet.

As I was drifting off to sleep a thought popped into my head. Did I remember to close the lid on the toilet? What if I forgot, he climbs out, and flies back into the room to taunt me? What if he's angry and out for revenge? What if ....

I jumped up and ran for the bathroom. Light on. Toilet seat down. Whew!

I slowly lifted the lid and there he was, minus an antenna and two legs, and doing the backstroke. Great. No one's going to believe this are they? I know, I think I'll take a picture. I grabbed my phone, yelled "smile" and pushed the button. I closed the lid but still couldn't bring myself to flush the toilet - hubby still needs to see this up close and personal.

I climbed back in bed ... finally, sleep... sweet, blissful sleep. After all the day's excitement I can't wait to fall asleep.

I'm slipping awaaaaaay.

AHHHHHHHHHHHH! What if he called for reinforcements?

You'll be glad to know that I did finally fall asleep. It wasn't the seven hours I was hoping for but it was enough. I made it through a terrible, horrible home invasion and lived to tell the tale.

And, my little BIG visitor ... yep, still swimming in the toilet at 7 am. I think it's true what they say, that when Armageddon comes the cockroach will live on. Meanwhile Dale was properly impressed ... and promptly FLUSHED.

And just for you, here's the proof   ewwwww, I know GROSS!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

There's a vulture living in my home

 and her name is Spunky. I can't eat  one meal without her eyes boring into my food. If that doesn't give her what she desires she changes her tactics and shifts her gaze from the food to the human. "Please Mommy feed me, I'm staaaaarving!" And, don't waste your time feeling sorry for her, she just finished off a cat-sized turkey sandwich!

This constant fascination and desire for human food along with her addiction to eating grass and barfing makes me wonder if she has an eating disorder. Do you think there's such a thing as kitty bulimia? Maybe I need to stage an intervention.

Nah, she's just being a cat!

Monday, July 18, 2011

going along with my earlier blog ...

Funny Pictures - Kitteh Komic of teh Day: Gotta Get Down on Monday

A Day of Rest

Let me start with showing you this photo  which has absolutely nothing to do with today's blog. I just wanted to give you a glimpse of my weekend entertainment which came free of charge, compliments of our neighbor. Apparently said-neighbor decided it was time for tree surgery in her backyard. Rather than conform to traditional methods of hiring a tree service to do the job she had someone come over with a tow truck. This man proceeded to rip limbs from this giant old oak tree by attaching ropes from the limbs to the tow truck and yanking those suckers off! I have no idea if this is a trimming situation or if he intends on taking the whole thing down bit by bit as he dismembers the tree, one limb at a time. What I really wanted to do was go out and take video of the whole process but was a little skeered of how that might be received by my neighbor. Some people just don't get me and my obsession of documenting everything I see on my blog!

Now, on to the topic at hand.

The weekend is over, a new week is underway and a new summer routine starts today. After a five week absence Eddie is back on a daily basis. It's hard to believe how fast this summer has flown by. Just three more weeks before school starts locally, four weeks and Ian will be home, five weeks and my boys will be back in Tennessee. I think it's true when they say "the older you get the faster time flies." Around here everything seems to be moving in warp speed. In order to slow things down a bit let's take a moment and discuss what we need to do in order to survive this trip called "life."

Do you observe a day of rest and renewal? I realize this concept may be different for each individual and I in no way mean to claim that my way is the only right way. However you do it, I feel that everyone needs to take at least one day out of their busy week to stop, get off the merry-go-round of life, and do whatever it takes to rejuvenate themselves for the next six days. Sunday is that day for me.

I like to start my Sunday (well, after the obligatory shower and breakfast) with a time of worship. As a Christian this is a vital part of what makes me tick and enables me to handle life's ups and downs. I like to think of Sunday worship as the jump-start to a new beginning.

For most of my growing-up days, and definitely the last twenty-four years of life, I have experienced worship through a corporate church situation. By corporate church I mean going to a specific building where I am surrounded by fellow believers and together we pray, sing, and study God's Word. Our time of fellowship together builds us up and gives us the fuel we need to ride out the trials and tribulations of the coming week.

For the last year I have found myself increasingly discontent with what I call corporate church. I don't necessarily mean the concept of going to church as much as I mean going to a specific place of worship. Therefore for last six months or so I've branched out and started looking for other options. At some point in time I may feel comfortable sharing this experience with you. I won't for now, mainly because my thoughts and observations also affect my loved ones and I really don't want to put them in the uncomfortable position of trying to explain the path I'm taking.

So, for now you'll just have to be content knowing that I am experiencing my day of rest by worshiping God in a manner that lifts me up, rejuvenates me, and ultimately brings me peace. The "where" is not so important as the "how," and if the "how" does what it's supposed to and pleases God and me, then all is good.

My next way of observing rest is that I do not prepare any food. Please don't confuse this with some legalistic observation that does not allow cooking. I don't fix lunch or dinner because I don't want to! I figure I am responsible for feeding my family every other day of then week and it is only fair to take one day off. And, have no fear, no one in this household is going hungry. If we can afford it we go out to eat, usually during the lunch hour. Sometimes it is fast food, other times it involves waitresses/waiters taking our order and bringing us our food. It really doesn't matter to me as long as I don't have to prepare it.

On a side note, have you eaten at Chilis lately? Apparently the latest thing is for the wait-staff to introduce themselves to you and then inform you that you will be served by themselves and their partner. I don't know why but I find this extremely funny. It's like they're trying to convince you first of all that you warrant two servers and will be well taken care of in grand style, and second, the two waitresses have now gone through some sort of corporate merger or maybe a civil union. Partners, really? Does this mean I have to tip twice as much? What's going on here?

Ok, back on topic ....

When dinner time comes around everyone at home knows it's each man for himself. You're welcome to eat whatever you find in the refrigerator or cupboard, just don't ask me where it is or how to fix it ... and if you're smart you'll clean up whatever mess you make 'cause Mama doesn't clean house on Sunday either!

Another way of observing a day of rest is to actually rest. Wow, who woulda' thunk it?! Rest as in close your eyes, take a nap rest. For oh so many years I was almost giddy with anticipation of the upcoming nap time. Did you notice the use of past tense there?

I used to take naps on Sunday afternoon. This was before I went all hormonaless (yes, I just made that word up) and discovered that I had to give up naps. It's not that I don't want to nap, because I do. It's not because I can't use the extra sleep, because I think I do. It's because when I do take an afternoon nap I find that when I go to bed later that night I cannot fall asleep. I toss and turn. I scrunch my eyes closed and try to force my mind to go blank. When that doesn't work I try counting sheep or better yet play the "remodel my house" game in my head. On any normal night I will nod off somewhere between knocking down the kitchen wall and adding a porch on to the front of the house. But on the days I've taken a nap none of this seems to work. I end up with a sleepless night which totally ruins the affects of the whole day of rest thing.

Therefore I no longer take a nap. I do however, take that time and use it to do absolutely nothing of value. This may include playing endless hours of mind-numbing games on the computer, reading a book that holds little to no literary value, or watching multiple Sci-fi movies on TV. Whatever I do is for pure, simple personal entertainment.

After "nap time" I move on to more constructive things that are also done for pleasure like sewing, beading, scrapbooking, drawing, writing, etc.  Granted a lot of these activities I will also do during the week but when I do them on Sunday there is no guilt involved that I'm ignoring the over-flowing basket of dirty clothes or the wretchedly dirty kitchen floor.

As for all those "chores" that are going undone ... they sit, patiently waiting for Sunday to end and the work week to begin. And me, I'm all rested, ready to take on whatever life throws my way. Now, what about you. Do you give yourself a well deserved day of rest. If not, you need to think about. It works wonders!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Somethings vs Some Things

I just hate it when I hit publish and then two seconds later see a spelling error. I'm pretty sure my English degree'd, editor husband hates it too!

There're Somethings You Just Don't Share

I went to brush my teeth this morning and as I looked at the toothbrushes in the holder, I could not for the life of me remember which one was mine. I've used the silly thing twice a day for quite awhile, probably longer than recommended, so I don't know why I suddenly became so confused. It's not like they're the same color or type, but when I reached for it I immediately drew a blank and the longer I stared at the two brushes the more confused and irritated I became.

What a dilemma!

I figured there were three options to choose from. I could  1) just pick a brush and hope I was right. 2) call my husband and ask him which one was his, or 3) toss them both and pull out new ones. Unfortunately there were no new toothbrushes in the house so option #3 was out. There was absolutely no way I was going to call Dale and ask for help... I'd never hear the end of it. So, I opted for just grabbing a toothbrush and hoped I was right.

I'd like to wrap this up by telling you I chose correctly. Unfortunately I can't do that because now I can't remember which one I used! 

I'm also left with a new dilemma - do I confess and tell my husband that I might have used his toothbrush or do I just pretend like it never happened? I think I'll go with feigning innocence and be content with the fact that I'm 99.9% sure the purple one is mine. Meanwhile I plan on getting replacements and to make sure this never happens again I think I'll put little "His" and "Hers" tags on them 'cause who knows when I might have another senior moment!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Soap, It's Not Just for Washing

My mother called me the other day to tell me that she really enjoyed the blog Things a Mama Says, but according to her I left off one big saying, "If I hear you say that again I'm gonna wash your mouth out with soap!"

I'm sure she resorted to this threat on occasion but don't recall her ever actually doing it. Andrew on the other hand can't make that claim - more on that later.

What prompted this input from Mom was my use of the "F" word in another blog. NO! Not that "F" word, even I have standards. No, I used the word


"fart," well to be precise, I actually said "brain-fart" but to her a fart is a fart is a fart. Oh my, I'm really going to get into trouble now!

For some reason Mother really finds this word extremely offensive. I tried to explain to her that it was just a silly word and I could have said a whole lot worse but she was having none of it. In fact, I think she actually threatened me with the soap again.  I guess now that I have used it five more times here I'm really in BIG trouble. On the plus side she lives too far away to follow through with her threat and even then I'm bigger, younger, and can run faster, so for now I think I'm safe.

I still don't have a problem with the word 
fart, but for those of you that do I apologize for burning your eyes. I would say that from now on I will refrain from its usage but ya know, I just can't make the promise 'cause it's really a grand word! How 'bout we make up a code word, something like FOOT, and then anytime I use my "f" word, you can substitute and read it as FOOT.

Let's try it out. I type "today I went to Kroger and couldn't remember what I went for, a complete brain-fart moment." And you read it as "today I went to Kroger and couldn't remember what I went for, a complete brain-foot moment." Now see, wasn't that easy?

Now that that's been cleared up let's back up and discuss the threat of washing one's mouth out with soap. Chances are if you're from my generation this was a threat you heard once or twice in your childhood. We were born back in the day when it was perfectly acceptable to threaten your child with bodily harm and no one batted an eye. Do it today and you might find yourself being reported to DFACS.

When it came to my own children I may have actually used this threat once or twice.

Ok, I confess - I did use this threat. But it was a last resort - promise! Here's the deal. Somewhere along the way Andrew gave somewhat objectionable names to people who frustrated him. Examples can be found in Dale's Kid's Journal entries:
8/23/1993 - Andrew's favorite derrogatory term: "Capper-dee-dee" as in "stop it you capper-dee-dee" 
We really have no idea where he came up with this one but it wasn't too bad, just a two-year-old trying to express himself. However, a month later things had gotten a little more personal
9/27/1993 Andrew's current favorite words are "pee-pee head" and "idiot" 
and then this
4-11-1994 I (Dale) took the boys to McDonalds last Saturday. On the playground a little boy was trying to climp onto one of the hamburgers that Andrew was on. He said, "Get down you little idiot!"
So, seven months later it was apparent that he had a favorite insult. Now, I would be remiss if I didn't own up that he learned the word "idiot" from me. I really didn't realize how often I used it until it started coming back at me. At the time we spent a fair amount of time in the car, driving too and from the daycare, and evidently I used the term frequently when referring to my fellow drivers. After several embarrassing moments caused by my precocious two-year-old insulting perfect strangers I learned pretty quick that (a) I needed to clean up my act and (b) it was time to bring out the old "I'm going to wash your mouth out with soap if you say that again."

It was also at this same time we were also dealing with another two-year-old problem. Whoever coined the phrase Terrible Twos sure knew what we were dealing with!

Andrew was in a classroom of five same-aged toddlers and apparently all of them had the propensity to BITE their fellow classmates. 
Every day when I picked him up it was the same story "today Andrew had to do timeout for biting" but then they'd go on to say "he wasn't the only one, they're all biting each other!" It was obvious that Ms Judy was frustrated and so were we because once we got him home whenever he got the chance he continued to play Hannibal Lechter on his brother and his parents!

I refused to try the common remedy of having the injured party return the bite. As a young child my aunt forced me to bite my month-older cousin Ricky. While I've long since forgotten the exact circumstances of the bite I'll never forget being severally grossed out and traumatized by the whole incident and swore I'd never resort to in with my own children. Desperate for a solution we turned to our pediatrician for suggestions on how to handle it. His answer, "he's biting out of frustration that he doesn't know how to handle whatever is going on. If he wants to bite, let him .... but have him bite a bar of soap."

Yes, you heard that right. My pediatrician recommended having my two-year old bite a bar of soap. While somewhat shocked we decided it was worth a try. At this point he was calling everyone idiot and biting anyone who crossed him. We figured if someone reported us we would plead insanity from being in parental distress due to a tyrannical toddler. At this point, what did we have to lose (other than our children and personal freedom)?

We decided it would be best to try the punishment at home before mentioning it to his teacher. It was a weekend and it didn't take long before our two kids got into a ruckus. Big brother was in tears because little brother had clamped down on his hand. We took Andrew aside and for the umpteenth time went through the old "biting is wrong, don't do it" spiel and then we added "if you bite brother again you're going to have to bite a bar of soap too." Then we pulled out a clean bar of soap and showed it to him. We let him touch and smell it and once again said "if you bite your brother you also have to bite the bar of soap."

Now for some kids just the smell of the soap alone would deter them from further offenses. Not our Andrew. Even at an early age he was always pushing the limits to see just how far he could go and he wasn't about to let a little threat of soap stop him from tormenting his brother. It wasn't too much longer before Ian was once again in tears from a bite on the arm.

Out came the soap.

At this point Andrew knew we meant business and commenced to screaming and kicking, fighting off the evil parents. What he didn't count on was the fact that once he started screaming it created the perfect opportunity to pop in a bar of soap in his mouth. Followed with a quick but gentle application of pressure to the chin and we were insured of a contact between teeth and soap.

I can't begin to describe the look on the child's face ... a mix of disbelief and disgust, followed by lots of spitting, wails for water, and giant alligator tears. (I can't believe I'm admitting all this on the internet. Do you think the statue of limitations has run out for being reported for child abuse? Do you think Andrew might follow up with his own version of Mommy Dearest?). But you know what? It proved quite effective! I'm not saying that he immediately stopped biting but he tapered off pretty quick.

Every morning we would remind him that biting people led to biting soap, and he would shudder and remember. We also moved him up to the three-year old room, partially to get him away from the other vampires but we also felt interaction with older kids might help curtail the biting. Whichever it was, we finally crossed over from the biting stage and we all lived to tell the tale.

I also have to tell you that the whole process had a profound affect on big brother. While Ian never had to bite the soap for biting we did alter the threat and use "if you talk like that I'm gonna make you bite soap" on him and his brother in their 'formative' years. Traumatized by witnessing his brother's ordeal it was enough to keep his language acceptable and as for Andrew, well .... it worked for him too.

Don't get me wrong. I know my children aren't angels and freely admit that throughout the years we've had some gnashing of teeth as they've grown and tested the waters. But overall they were good boys, who've grown into good men, who make their mama proud.

And, as far as I know neither uses bad words and the biting has definitely stopped.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Do you ever play the "I Wish" game?

I do. A lot.

Today I'm bored so I'm going to play and share it with you. But first let me clarify this is a purely selfish game. It's not about wishing for world peace, a cure for cancer, or food for everyone. Nope it's all about me and the little/big things I wish I had or could do. I know it probably sounds selfish, but it is after all only a game.

so, let's play!

I wish ....

I could knock down some walls!

As our boys are getting older, both with one foot out the door, Dale and I should really be thinking about downsizing. However, our house really isn't all that big to begin with and the market being what it is I just don't see selling this place for another. Besides, it's so old and falling apart we'd have to do a boat load of repairs and upgrades before we could unload it. So, my solution is to knock down a few walls, create the open floor plan I've always wanted, and stay in this old house.

I'd start here in the kitchen.  The wall with the stove and refrigerator -  GONE!

On the other side of that wall is my craft room  Can you see the potential here? One BIG kitchen.

But let's not stop there.   Knock out a couple more walls and the kitchen opens up to the dining room.

On the other side you see what's coming down.  and another perspective looking in from the living room  
Now realistically I know all these walls can't come down without some professional help. One or more of them is more than likely a load baring wall. But if we're playing the wishing game, anything is possible!

A small disclaimer here - for those of you who are in shock that I would be doing away with my craft room. Have no fear. Remember Ian has one foot out the door, right? I'll just turn his room into my craft room, problem solved. 

Back to business.

At this point, I figure why stop here. See this wall?   It's the back wall of the dining room and on the other side is a screened-in porch.  Our yucky nasty back porch would be a really nice sun room. I think I'd actually make it the dining room and the other space would be a big great room.

Here's a wider view of the space.  

And now I must pause for a teaching moment. If you are selling your home and posting photos online, DO NOT use a photo like this one. Doing so will scare prospective buyers away and get you mocked on the internet. Trust me on this one!

Can you name the 10 big rut-rohs?

  1. close your roll top desk, no one is impressed with all your bills and miscellaneous junk
  2. remove vacuum from the room - showing you have won't make people believe you actually use it
  3. make sure all your chairs are in place
  4. cover the gross floor with a rug
  5. close the pet gate or better yet, remove it all together
  6. what is the mystery cord hanging from the hutch?
  7. don't show your pet and her scratching post, not everyone thinks kitty-kitty is cute
  8. remove junk from the table including the bag of Goodwill clothing 
  9. hide the junk on the back porch
  10. this is not a linen closet, remove the folded bedspread
This is the kind of photo that people pick apart and exclaim "I can't believe she actually posted that and thinks it's gonna sell!" Personally I can't believe I posted half these photos. I guess it goes to show I'm not much for housekeeping, but then you knew that already didn't you?

Now, back to our game. 

I think I'm done knocking down walls but there are two things that need to be replaced. One is the front door.  Ugly dark foyer needs a door with glass to let in some light. I'm thinking one with a transom would be perfect. 

And finally, if my back porch becomes a sun room/dining room I will no longer have access to the back yard. I'm thinking it would be awesome to tear out the bay window  and put in french doors. Don't you?

So there you have it - today's game of "I wish."  Of course this is just the beginning. Once all those walls are knocked down, I'm left with a big unfinished living space. I need new flooring - tile or hardwood, or a mix of the two, new cabinets, countertops, and of course new appliances. 

Ca-ching, ca-ching can you see the $$$$$ adding up? Back to earth, this is just a game. I reaaaaaaally need to stop watching HGTV. All it does is give me crazy ideas that, unless I win the lottery or get featured on a tv show, will never come to fruition. Meanwhile I need to go pick my husband up off the floor. I think he fainted about halfway through this blog. Don't worry honey, I promise I won't attempt any of this at home. 

For now anyway.....
Spunk cat was just outside for her morning stroll around the backyard. I saw her streak past the kitchen window, running for her life. That can only mean one thing .... excuse me while I arm myself with a golf club and a baseball bat. I'm off to hunt me some ninja cat. Update to follow.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Things That A Mama Says

You know what I'm talking about ... those things that makes a young child wince,
a pre-teen roll their eyes,  
a teenager lock themselves in their room for months on end,  
and a young adult grit their teeth and bite their tongue.   I'm talking about all those infamous things my mother said to me, that I then repeated to my children, all the while kicking myself and exclaiming "oh no, I've become my mother!"

Why don't we compare lists and see what we have in common.

  1. If you don't stop making that face it's going to freeze and you'll look that way forever - whether it be sticking out your tongue, crossing your eyes, or mimicking an ape I'm sure you get the picture. Ironically I actually see some truth in this one because for the life of me there is no way to get me to pose for a photo without my face contorting into one of those faces. 
  2. If it were a snake it would have bitten you - as in, it's right there in front of your face, can't you see it? I always wondered about this one because believe me if there was a snake right in front of my face I would see it. But since "it" is NOT a snake it's entirely feasible that "it" must be invisible, at least for girls. The guys though are another whole story.  Everyone knows guys JUST.DON'T.LOOK. Of course why should they when it's much easier to call for help and have someone else do the dirty work? 
  3. Stop standing there with the refrigerator door open, you're letting all the cold air out -  I have to admit that as an adult I frequently defy this command (imagine that, Sherri acting in defiance!) More often than not I open the refrigerator door to get a drink and leave it open as I get my glass out, fill it with ice, pour the drink, and finally close the door after returning the tea pitcher, milk jug, etc to the 'fridge. I also leave the freezer door open while filling ice trays and and have been known to stand staring inside the freezer for 5-10 minutes willing something to jump out and yell "cook me for dinner". So far, every time I've gone back to the refrigerator it is still full of cold air, it's never once been empty. Excuse me now while I go knock on a piece of wood because I'm pretty sure that I've just jinxed myself.  
  4. on a similar note, Were you born in a barn? Close the door - well that's a ridiculous statement because you were there when I was born and it certainly wasn't in a barn. However I think it's more effective than a simple "shut the door" because it confuses the city kids who don't know what a barn is, much less why you don't want to leave it's door open. 
  5. This is going to hurt me a lot more than it's going to hurt you - and how, pray tell, do you know that? Physically I'm calling bull on this statement (coming from the child who had to go out and pick her own switches), and mentally, well let's just say until you have children of your own there's no way this statement can be comprehended. Meanwhile you might want to consider that corporal punishment is so politically incorrect these days that if you're going to utter these words you better make sure you're not standing in line at Walmart lest you want to deal with a visit from DFACS. 
  6. Clean up your room, what do you have, potatoes growing under your bed? - everyone knows that potatoes don't come from under your bed, they come from Kroger! But if they did, think how you could save on the grocery bill. And besides why should I clean my room when it's only going to be messed back up tomorrow? Raise your hand if, as the housewife/househusband, you've thought the exact same thing you did decades ago. Housework is over-rated in my book, regardless of your age.
  7. You'll thank me for this some day - hmmm, yeah, right. I will say there have been instances where I could say "Mom, you were right" but then, I might have to admit that she was right and I was wrong and well, let's not go there, ok? 
  8. Because I said so, that's why - no other statement has been uttered that more infuriates a child AND delights a parent. We'll just leave it at, that once you've made it to parenthood, you've earned the right to NOT give a reason - you heard it enough growing up now it's your turn, right? See the vicious cycle?
  9. I have eyes in the back of my head, I see and know everything - it took my boys years to understand the concept of a rear-view mirror. Once they got it, I just left the eye part out and stuck with "I know everything." Even today they still believe that's true. Ian and Andrew you can STOP your eye rolling RIGHT NOW!
  10. and finally, I brought you into this world and I can certainly take you out of it! - honestly I don't think my mother ever used this expression but she probably thought it. I, on the other hand, used it frequently. Even though they're both out of their teens and tower over me I still occasionally remind them ... and they smile and pat me on the head. It's tough being the short one in the family!
There you have it - my list of things that Mama's say - handed down from one generation to the other. Thanks mom!

Me and mother, 1994. Notice the big glasses, dark hair, and skinny waist (flapping my gums as usual though). Neither one of us likes having our picture taken which is why I'm having to use such an old photo. Just another trait we share. I guess I need to suck it up and let someone take a shot of us the next time we're together. And then we can sit and complain about how bad we look.