Monday, December 31, 2012


1. What did you do in 2012 that you'd never done before?
Attempted to be a stay-at-home mom and realized that that job ain’t for sissies or the mentally unstable.  Good thing I found a jobby job.  I also realized a goal of doing something I like while working for a company that is working towards making the world a better place, even if it’s just through water and sewage.  I also willingly vacationed with my family-at-large and successfully maintained my sanity. A truly surprising accomplishment. 

2. Did you keep your new year's resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I rarely make them because I rarely keep them so…nope. J

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No babies this year…we shall see what next year brings!

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No deaths either, which is probably good since we had our fair share of them in 2011 and 2010.  May we keep the 2012 streak alive!

5. What countries did you visit?
Well, if you count Nebraska as other country there’s that.  If you don’t then I didn’t travel outside of the US.  We went to Nebraska and California, which is a staple in our lives.

6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you didn't have in 2012?
A pregnancy and perhaps a baby.  Other than that I feel like we have so much.  So again, can we keep the 2012 streak alive in that aspect too?

7. What dates from 2012 will be etched upon your memory, and why?
I can't remember dates to save my life so probably none of them.  Sorry significant event that I'm not remembering right now. 
8. What was your biggest achievement of this year?
Work.  Finding a company that I am proud to work for who appreciates its employees enough to think of their comforts above all else.  At times I feel like I am capable of more but then I realize that everything is good.  Don’t mess with a good thing and more will come.

9. What was your biggest failure?
I think my biggest failure started in 2011 when I made the choice to leave my Hell employer for a pipedream that was NOT dreamy and short lived.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Nothing crazy thank God!

11. What was the best thing you bought?
I have no idea.  Honestly we didn’t buy anything too exciting.  Or at least its not exciting any more.  But really I think financial stability has been a great accomplishment.  Starting the year off unemployed makes that whole thing a shaky thing. 

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
I’ve got two to celebrate here.  First my relationship with AJ is like a 1000 times better than it was a year ago.  So I feel like celebrating the efforts on both of our parts because of this.

Second, Juanito and me as we continue down this treacherous path of parenthood I am continually surprised at our ability to handle it together. 

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Society.  I could name people that I actually know but that seems rude especially if they don’t read this.  So I’m going with society in general.  Between immigration debates, the Presidential elections, gun control debates and the looming fiscal cliff and all the finger pointing that goes with it I am appalled. 

14. Where did most your money go?
Bills, mortgage, car payment, vet bills, medical bills, fertility docs, and a little bit of travel.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Walden.  Even though I was nervous (well beyond nervous) about spending so much time with my family-at-large I was so excited about finally attending a summer camp. 

16. What song will always remind you of 2012?
Ok so I guess its supposed to be Call Me, Maybe but there are so many others to choose from! 

Fun. – Some Nights.

Rhiannon –Diamonds (I don’t know why but it just does for me)
17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?
Happier: way happier!  I’m not paralyzed with fear on my couch worrying about how I was gonna pay my mortgage let alone put gas in my car!
Thinner: Fat.  Way more depressed
Richer: Monetarily yes (see happier) and emotionally but really I think that might be thanks to the whole unemployment thing.  I am more grateful therefore richer.  Does that sound like a fortune cookie or a Psalm?

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Probably worked out.  I think I might always feel this way after the holiday season though.  Gluttony means depressed shopping at Old Navy which is a new holiday tradition.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?

20. How did you spend Christmas?
With my family.  With all the bitching and therapy I do when it comes these guys, I still love being with them.  Even if it means I don’t really love myself. Oi, I should call Dr. Curmudgeon soon.

21. Did you fall in love in 2012?
I think I fall more and more in love with Juanito as the years go by.  So yes, yes I did.

22. What was your favorite TV program?
Revelations (or Revolutions for those who don’t like in this house) became a reluctant must-watch in this house.  As well as Parenthood (because it ain’t Tuesday unless you’re crying on the couch) and Duck Dynasty because I want Uncle Si in my family.  (He would seriously blend in.)

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Well this is just a bad idea to answer.

24. What was the best book you read?
Shelter Me made me cry like no one’s business. It touched on my biggest fear as a mother and wife.  I loved every character.  Oh and the whole Hunger Games Trilogy.  Don’t hate me, but I loved it.  Hopefully the fact that I haven’t read nor seen the Twilight Saga will redeem in some eyes. 

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
The Lumineers. Fun. Florence and the Machine, oh Vampire Weekend!  Spotify!  All of the DMB Live Traks that Juanito got me for Christmas.

26. What did you want and get?
The chance to try for a baby, again.  I wasn’t sure it was in the cards for us this year.  Thankfully it’s a big deck.

27. What did you want and not get?
The pregnancy but we’re still working on it.

28. What was your favorite film of 2012?
All year long?  Man I can’t remember every movie I’ve seen.  But I will have to say that hunger Games is one of most anticipated movies of my life.  Catching fire comes out in 2013 so that’s promising!

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 34 this year and I still have to do the math to remember it.  But I ended my Jesus Year and started my “mid-thirties.”  I celebrated in Carlsbad and will continue to do so until I don’t celebrate birthdays.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Adding Powerball Winner to my accomplishments.  Money doesn’t buy you happiest but it allows you time to create it for yourself!

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept of 2012?
Cardigans and flats.  I quit the charade of wearing heels.  Flats allow me to be nimble and fashionable.  I will weep when ballet flats go out of style.

32. What kept you sane?
Juanito, Schmacey, Schmaren, other various friends, AJ and The Boy.

33. What political issue stirred you the most?
Oy, where to begin….  Women’s health, abortion, immigration (I live in Arizona I can’t help it), same-sex marriage, Obamacare.  The older I get the more riled up I get about political issues.  I foresee that I will be the 60 year old who is occupying Washington. 

34. Who did you miss?
Those who have passed.  If you’re too far away from me in miles, I can call you, exchange pictures and texts and parts of our lives in tidbits.  If you’re gone forever I will never have that chance again.

35. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Imagine that we could get it together
Stand up for what we need to be

--Dave Matthews Band “Mercy”

holidays make me crazy

I recently read this article and thought what if the general public got to weigh in how I was doing in my roll of being a wife and mom.  I think this week I might have a very low approval rating.  Spending so much time focused on the family-at-large during the holidays makes me, well, crazy.  I have been a bitter ass to deal with.  I acknowledge this.  I don't know how to not be because this is most definitely a coping mechanism. 

Juanito, please bear with me and it will be over soon. 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Santa's Pork Butt: Recap Volume One

So a lot of stuff has happened that I have wanted to share here.  Nothing too amazing so don't get too excited but wanted to recap the last few weeks and share a photo or two...


Red at the dinner theater before the show
For Red's birthday we have a tradition where I take her for a special event.  It started when she was four years old and I took her to the Phoenix Ballet's Nutcracker.  What made me think it was cool to take a four year old to the ballet is beyond me, but she was awesome.  We sat in the balcony and she totally followed along.  We didn't know that it was such a fancy affair so the next year we went back but we did it up right.  Juanito work his tie and I wore an evening dress and Red wore a Christmas dress bought especially for the occasion.  Over the years we have gone to see the Twelve Dancing Princess, Junie B. Jones Jingle Bells Batman Smells, and the Wizard of Oz.  This year it was Annie at the
Arizona Broadway Theatre that is a dinner theater.  I aim for something non-Christmas since her birthday is like a week from Christmas and that has to suck. The community eating was a strange experience.  As she is getting older there are more options available to us so I don't think that I'll limit it to just performances in the coming years.  The night we went to Annie it was cold and rainy and we could see our breathe, but we still capped off the night with some fro-yo!


Mamacita's Masa taste better with pork butt!
The next day I made tamales. I have never had the pleasure and this year Schmacey's family invited me to join in.  It was pretty much an all day event where we made probably 35-40 dozen tamales.  It was crazy but so much fun.  I now know how to make my meat better and can't wait for next year!  I bought a 7 lb pork butt and man I loved talking about my pork butt!  cuz really when can you say "pork butt" except when you're looking to buy pork butt???  From my 7 lb pork butt I got almost 5 dozen tamales.  I gave a dozen to my Dad for his stocking and the rest are living in our freezer to be enjoyed in the coming months.
Unexpected Illness!

Breakfast in bed
The day after that....The Boy woke up with a fever.  I am lucky enough to work for a company that allows me to work from home, but there wasn't a lot of work getting done because someone did not think they were sick and really just wanted to play.  Outside.  we went to the doctor and found out he had a double ear infection, started a new antibiotic and breathing treatments (which he hated).  We watched a lot of Nick Jr.  and Disney Juinor as well as Peter Pan, Cars, and Cars 2 that we borrowed from Grandma Peggy. Over the course of the time he was sick, I probably watched those movies three times each and I would do it again if it would keep him on the couch and resting.  I ended up working from home the next day as well  and I think Cass was starting to think that I lost my job again.  Juanito stayed home with him the day after that because he didn't break the fever until then.  It was so hard to have him be sick, since he rarely is.  We bounced from trying to keep him calm and not running around (which caused him to cough which caused him to throw up) to trying to keep the fever down which made him a crying, whining, mess of a boy who wouldn't keep his clothes on.  I get it, you're hot but dude keep your shirt on!
Santa...we know him!!! 
The Boy with Santa 2011
The Boy did recover ,thankfully, in time to meet Santa! 
Ok, Santa side note.  So Santa...we know him.  See Schmacey's dad works as for Santa so we have the absolute pleasure of having the same Santa every year.  And with The Boy's new clarity on who Santa is (the guy who is bringing you a gift and commencing the gift opening???), well needless to say I had high expectations for this year's Santa visit.  So we went to the designated hotel on Sunday morning.  Many of our other friends and their children were there too.  We had been prepping him that we were going to go see Santa and he identified every Santa he could see (loudly).  He was ready, we were ready, my camera was ready!  Cue the fat guy!
Can you see that twinkle of fear in his eye?
Sadly though, when met face to face with Santa, The Boy frozen and clung to Juanito and me for dear life.  He did not yell or cry (like that kid who screamed even when his dad walked over to Santa).  He did not run away.  He simply did what his mother does best and buried his head. Eventually Santa was able to talk him into sitting with him. And they chatted about tractors (mostly on Santa's part. Ok, so Santa was the only one talking), But The Boy did sit with Santa for a picture.   I'm encouraged since he didn't run screaming from the guy in a velvet suit perhaps next year will be even better. But I should learn that when it comes to The Boy I should learn to expect the unexpected.  Perhaps next year Santa should wear a cup.    

The Boy and Santa 2012
No high fives for Santa!

Our Christmas Eve.....

Glendale picture please
Our Christmas Plans have been the same since like 2002 when Juanito and I started sharing holidays.  Christmas morning is always at my parent's house.  I know I should compromise and share the morning with his family, but this is the Christmas morning that I want for my kid(s).  The craziness that is Christmas morning with cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and great grandma.  But Christmas Eve we go to church.  It one of the two times in the year that we get our Jesus on so its kind of a "must" for me.  Its an hour out of the day and a reason to dress both my boys like the handsome men they are.  We go to the traditional service because timing wise it works better and contemporary and church don't go together for me...its just awkward.  And the church that we go to is in the historical part of Glendale where the city decorates the park (same park we got married in) with thousands upon thousands of twinkle lights...appropriately named Glendale Glitters. There are horse and carriage rides around the park and its always a fun little walk after church.   So regardless of how handsome The Boy is in this picture, he fights us to wear jeans, button downs and appropriate shoes.  He is wearing his slippers in this picture because two outta three ain't bad.  

I will be back with more stories and more pictures but I should probably work now  Merry Belated Christmas! 

Friday, December 21, 2012

The final stretch to the big day!

So you would think that with my self-proclaimed love of the Christmas season I would have been a blogging fool, but not so much.  Sorry about that.  It started with this last weekend of back to back "things."  The musical and dinner with Red, tamales with Schmacey, and The Boy developed a fever which meant I got to "work from home" for two days, but really don't think that it was the most productive I've ever been.  Then the Boy so graciously shared his germs with me.  So now I'm sitting here like a slack-jawed yokel mouth breathing.  Its awesome.  This is totally what I need on the final push to the holidays. 

So while I coat my lips with chap stick one more time less focus on the total awesomeness of the next few days. 

1. Christmas party with our friends.  We used to get together after the Christmas but this year we're doing it before hand.  I am so excited to just hang out, eat a little, drink a little, and laugh a lot. 

2. SANTA!  We're gonna go see SANTA!  I have told The Boy and I don't think he gets it, but, wait.  he will.  I. CAN'T. WAIT.

3. My sister and her kids are coming to town in a one horse open sleigh called Frontier airlines. 

4. finish the baking...have to finish the baking!



Friday, December 14, 2012

Final Thoughts on Friday

As I read the news of the school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School I am completely dumb founded at this tragedy.  It seems trite to say since its all over Facebook, but my heart and prayers go out to the families.  I could not imagine losing my child.  I could not imagine ever being able to pick myself up and continue on when he could not.  What makes someone believe that they have the power to take the lives of innocent children?  What happened to that person to make them think that this was the answer?

1. I know that making gun laws is arguably pointless since the lawless don't care, but what about the mentally unstable?  How do we secure our freedom to bare arms as well as our freedom to live our lives not in fear? 

2. On to something more light hearted - I have made an agreement with Juanito to not check the bank account until after Christmas.  I am allowed to check the balance in order to transfer as needed, but I am not allowed to check the line items.  This is really hard.  I just checked the account to see if the first wave of bills was processed and I see that there is a pending charge.  OH THE SELF-RESTRAINT!  Juanito be proud!

3. It might be the Clomid talking but I've been a blubbering mess these days.  I fell apart reading my uncles Christmas card.  It was a report of his life, in one continuous sentence.  The editor in me screamed but the Clomid in me cried.  I got caught up on Parenthood last night and OH.HOLY.SHIT.BALLS.  I was balling!  Balling I tell you.  That show gets me everytime, but this week's episode...oy. 

4. Everyone is rushing and stressing right now with the holidays bearing down on us.  Everyone is stressed-out trying to meet deadlines and finish projects and attend a bunch of events and still remained focused at work...well, kind of.  With everything else going on, try and remember that this is a time of year to be with our families, hold them close and love them.  Remember that life is short but sweet for certain. 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Justifying the Craziness of the Time

like the corner of my mind.
Misty water-colored memories
of the way we were.

With it being Christmas time and then New Year’s Eve following behind it, I think we have a tendency to look back and reflect on the past year, our accomplishments, our follies and hopefully look forward to the New Year.  I think this makes people a little nostalgic; at least it does for me.  So, like I did at Thanksgiving, I want to share with you some of my Christmas memories.

When we lived in Nebraska, like everyone else, we had a basement.  So when Christmas time came around we had two trees.  Looking back on it as an adult, this seems decadent, but this was just how it was.  The upstairs tree was real and was displayed in the large front window of the living room.  You know the room that we weren’t allowed to go into unsupervised?  That tree held all of the ornaments we received growing up.  They were the best ornaments in the collection.  This tree also had all of the gifts for extended family.  It had the star on top that blinked and the twinkle white lights.  It was damn near picturesque. 

The tree down stairs was in the family room, you know the room we were allowed in?  That tree was fake and held the leftover ornaments, the ornaments made in school, the ornaments made for the dog and the mismatched colored lights.  This tree also held all of our family gifts.  So while the tree looked beyond sad, it was next to our fire place where our stockings were really hung with care and probably duct tape and it looked like Christmas bounty on Christmas morning.  We used to have to sit at the top of the stairs waiting for Mom and Dad to make sure Santa and the elves where gone.  This was probably a parental ploy to bought time making sure everything was put together right or take a picture of us all in our matching pjs.  

When we moved to Arizona my Dad, the sheet metal worker, made a cactus out of sheet metal.  We covered that stuccoed, army green, metal cactus in lights all those Christmases we drove home to Nebraska for the holiday.  Less fire-hazard you know.  Those years that we drove back to Nebraska for Christmas, we would pack up all five of us plus one dog in the diesel chugging two-tone blue suburban.  Loaded to the gills with luggage and gifts.  We drove from Arizona to New Mexico, short jaunts through Texas and Oklahoma panhandles, and cleeeaaarrr across Kansas in freezing temperatures, blowing snow and sleet.  We did this probably the first three or four years after we moved to Arizona.  These memories are sprinkled with eggnog milk shakes at McDonald's in New Mexico.  Listening to The Yellow Rose of Texas so many times we dubbed it a Christmas carol.  The smell of bitter cold, snow, and diesel from the various truck stops along the way.  The blowing winds of I40 through New Mexico, the stockyards in Dalhart, TX, Hooker OK where everyone (but me) has been pulled over and the nothingness and time suck of Kansas. Growing up I couldn't imagine it any other way.  But, now, with the benefit of time and looking at it as a parent, that must have been hell for my parents.  No wonder they fought all the time. 

When we started staying home (Arizona home) for Christmas, we started our own traditions.  Opening certain gifts on Christmas Eve and calling family.  Eventually my Mom's parent's joined us for the holidays and then those trips became longer and longer over the years until they bought a trailer and officially became Snow Birds.  The winters with my grandparents are wonderful memories.  Baking so that Grandma wouldn't.  Grandpa sneeking a pocket knife out to start slowly opening his gift when it wasn't his turn.  And Dad getting so tickled at Grandpa when he got caught. Mom getting so excited about the big old prime rib my grandparents would bring with them.  Grandpa picking all of the grapefruit off the tree.  When my grandpa passed away in 2004, I was so thankful that I have those memories.  If we hadn't moved to Arizona, I can't say that we would have ever had that relationship with them.  Grandma is still a snow bird and still with us this Christmas. 

When I went away to college, for one year mind you, it was the first time I missed out on the tree trimming party and all of the festivities that come along with Christmas in my family.  I was home for the actual Christmas Eve and Day.  My roommates decorated our apartment and hung little stockings, including one for the cat.  We made sugar cookie dough, ate most of it and then make cookies.  It was the first time I created my own Christmas memories.  When I moved back to the Valley, I moved in with my other sister.  We chronologically three years apart but we’ve had this connection since we were little.  It’s similar to what you expect from twins.  As little girls we were inseparable.  As teenagers we could battle it out like the best of Jerry Springer.  But with less baby daddies and paternity tests.  When we decided to live together in our early 20s I’m sure it was a shock to my parents.  We lived together for two years, successfully most of the time.
Our first Christmas together we went to the tree lot and bought a cheap, sad little tree and strapped it to the roof of my Saturn.  We hauled it up the stairs to our apartment and I trimmed off the lower branches with a kitchen knife.  We sang Christmas carols and laughed like we always do, and decorated our tree together.  This was my first independent Christmas and I love the memory of it. 

When Juanito and I moved in together I don’t know if he fully grasped the love I have for this holiday.  And really, without him reining me in, it has grown quite a bit since then.  I think that the older I get the more child-like I get about Christmas.  Or perhaps its because I have a child...  I'm not sure and I don't care the reason.  Christmas gets better and better for me.  And even though this weekend might break us between the grocery store run for baking supplies, then the actual baking, SCUBA diving Santa trip with Cee, taking Red to Annie (I know, how fitting is that!?) and then tamale-a-thon with Schmacey on Sunday.  I know its crazy and hectic.  I know that we squeeze everything out of ourselves and our bank accounts to do all the things I want to do. But I don't care.  I am making the memories that The Boy will cherish and share with his friends and future family. See Juanito, its totally justifiable. 

Spin it back to the Season

I was going to write this long post about an incident that happened recently in my family which left me sad, hurt, and defensive, as usual. 

But I'm not going to. 

In stead I'm gonna tell you a story about a little boy who is learning about Santa and the Spirit of the Season. Oh and his mom who is totally excited about it.

I am so loving this holiday with The Boy.  He is pointing out all of the Santas, including the blow up one that is riding a motorcycle in our neighborhood.  He oohs and ahs over the lights on the houses.  Every morning when we drive to daycare, he says "ook ights!  you mommy!"  I say yes the lights, aren't they pretty?  He always responds with "you mommy!"  I like to think that he is saying that the lights are as pretty as me.  A girl can dream. 

So like I said, he knows who Santa is.  He's got that down.  We've been telling him that Santa will come and bring him gifts and then we open all the gifts under the tree, but not until then.  He thinks that all of the gifts under the tree are for him and he wants to open them now, so I've concocted this rhetoric to keep him from ripping paper and going to town.  Alice, his Elf on the Shelf, has not be the deterrent we were hoping for, but I've been told it will work in a few years. 

We went to my parent's house the other night.  They have a plastic, light up Santa that stands outside their front door.  Every time we pull up to the house The Boy yells out "Santa!" and my heart flutters with his excitement.  When we got to their house the other night, The Boy was kind of taken aback by the tree at their house that had gifts under it as well.  He led me over to the tree and said "ook!"  I smiled and explained that Grandma and Grandpa have a tree with gifts just like our house.  His retort, which should be no surprise, was "for me!?"  I said that there was probably one or two in there for him, but that we couldn't open them until Santa came.  He pointed to the front of the house and said matter of factly, "Santa!"  Oy.  So now I had to explain that the plastic light up Santa wasn't the REAL Santa.  The REAL Santa comes on Christmas and then we get to open gifts.  I have a feeling that we'll be struggling with this all the way until Christmas morning.  Oh, and how I anticipate, with fear and excitement, Christmas morning. 

I need to remember to not get ahead of myself, but to enjoy these moments because I know they are fleeting.  So for now....Merry Christmas!
Merry Christmas from Bumble Bee

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Clomid Chronicles

Not sure how to start this installment of the Clomid Chronicles.  I mean it was a stellar 45 days with so much to tell.  So let’s just start from the beginning.  We upped the dosage, again.  I was taking a small child’s handful of pills every morning.  Then a wave of germs hit our house turning our lives on the side for a few weeks.  I ended up with a cold, Juanito with some “stomach issues” and The Boy had both.  We were all a mess.  I took a lot of ibuprofen to handle the aches and pains of a cold.  Only to find out that it would mask any ovulation indication on my temperature chart.  Oh, good to know.  When I went into the doctor they checked my CM and said that per that I did ovulate.  I didn’t get too excited because they said that last time.  Then they did the blood work.  When they called back the next day I was told that my blood work did not show that I ovulated but come in again.  They think I might have ovulated late.  Again, same routine as last month.
When I was feeling better I quit taking the ibuprofen and after a few days my chart indicated ovulation, but way after time intercourse or also know as DTD, or baby making time or happy fun time.  So I was already thinking that yes I did ovulate and hoping we did it close enough to whatever that timeframe would be.  The blood work came back AFTER the Thanksgiving weekend, which was no fun waiting, but it confirmed that I did ovulate.  I was officially in the 2WW (two week wait) to see if I would start a period or be pregnant.  Everything was positive.  I had sore boobs, I had the right kinda CM, and my temperature remained elevated and most important I passed the date that I should have started a period without starting one.  I WAS LATE!  I hatched a plan on how to tell my family at Christmas.  But I was afraid that I was wrong.  I was afraid that I had all this hope, bigger and brighter than ever, and that the test would be negative.  I didn’t want to test. I didn't want to even buy tests.  I was gun shy.  You see it’s like I divide in half during the 2WW.  I have this hope and I carry it in my heart.  I think if I care and nurture this hope it will somehow cosmically make me pregnant.  But the other half of me is the stoic, sensible side that says don’t over think this and wait until its confirmed.  Go on about your business.  Nothing to see here. 
Finally Sunday morning I tested (Juanito bought tests for me).  I left the test on the side of the bath tub and made Juanito go in and read it.  He came back into the bedroom and shook his head no.  The Hope Side told my head that since I ovulated late then it’s too early.  Yeah, that’s the ticket.  Do it again in a few days!  So I did and still negative, no matter how many times I looked at it.  So a few days later when I still hadn’t started my period I called the doctor.  They wanted me to wait before taking the Provera (the regular protocol).  Ironically that night I started my period.  I woke up in the middle of the night with stabbing cramps.  It was a delightful little present.   
We contemplated taking a break because its been an emotional few months.  Juanito said he wanted to continue because we’re getting closer, but that it wasn’t his body going through it.  I love him for listening to me when I rant and cry about all of this and for retaining the more important points.  When the dust settled I decided that we are getting closer and this stupid PCOS isn’t gonna tell when and where (even though it really does).  I’m not stopping because of a bunch of crying.  So here we go round four.  Lucky Round Number Four. 

Friday, December 7, 2012

Final Thoughts on Friday

Hey lookie what we have here!  Final Thoughts on Friday and, well, what do you know, ITS FRIDAY!  It's like a little gift I tell ya. 

So it's Friday yay.  Our big plans for the night, well it will start with a whole lotta nothing.  Then we will attempt to make pizzas again and pray to Little Baby Jesus that it goes as smoothly and successfully as the last time we did this.  Then we will all sit down and watch "Brave" because 1. its what all the other parents are doing and 2. Juanito got it at the Red Box. I thought up a new drinking game for the parents who don't want to acknowledge that they the responsible party at the party.  Every time you have to redirect you child back to the task at hand or away from something that might be broken or break them: DRINK!  So every time we have to tell The Boy to sit back on the couch and watch the effing movie because "this is what we're doing right now" DRINK!  Eventually someone will fall asleep right?  My money is on Juanito but I've always been a safe better, that's why I go to Vegas for the drinks.

1. I got bangs, I love them on my reflection but hate them on my forehead. It's a conundrum.
2. I have a sudden need to dance 
3. I made a big stink about getting my Christmas card picture done in a timely manner and the damn things are sitting on the counter.  I forgot that I have to buy stamps. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

Happy Holidays...Finally!

Since it’s officially December, I am now allowed to talk about Christmas.  I love love love love this holiday.  I love pretty much everything about it and tolerate the things I don't.  I am so very excited to celebrate with The Boy as he is one year older and more aware of things and just fun all the way around.  There are some draw-backs though…

1.   The Christmas Tree is “his.”  Regardless that WE the parents paid for it, or Juanito trimmed it and put it in the tree stand or that we put the vast majority of the decorations on it, it is his.  My tree.  That’s all we’ve heard about since Friday when Juanito, in preparation of going to get the tree, told him we were getting a tree for him.  Apparently this assumed ownership means he can hit “his tree” whenever the need strikes him.  Now that it is decorated we are attempting to stop this.  Good luck with that. 

2.   He is like a bull in a china closet.  Juanito’s mother has given us ornaments every year since we moved in together.   The last two Christmases the glass ornaments have not seen the light of day out of concern that it might get knocked off the tree.  Perhaps we should have practiced the same discretion when opening the other ornaments.  The Garfield ornaments that Juanito brought into this marriage are now in the garbage.  I found a Garfield foot in Santa’s sleigh and Odie’s head on the steps. The Hallmark collector's ornaments we've had will need to visit the super glue doctor. Two minutes after being given the motorcycle I hear Juanito, “Dude, you’re like a bull in a china closet, give it to me.”  We have now began the mantra “Look with your eyes not your hands” Again, good luck with that.  

3.   We introduced our Elf on the Shelf.  Her name is Alice.  The Boy could really care less because I made the fatal mistake of introducing her while eating cake and ice cream after we finished decorating our his tree.  He was waaay more excited about his “cream” than Santa, a stalker-y girl-elf or the fact that Mom is reading a book to him in her yelling voice.  “Cream” ended up on a number things, one being his precious Winnie (which is the name of his security blanket).  When I saw the brown spots this morning and figured out it was just chocolate ice cream I felt a little bit of defeat since we fought through the washing AND drying of Winnie but here she is, dirty.  Dirty, dirty Winnie.  Perhaps if we had named the girl-elf Winnie we would have had more of a response????

Thursday, November 29, 2012


Since its only November 29th, I'm not allowing myself to go all mistletoe, snowflakes and reindeer on your asses. The level of self-restraint I'm practicing here is mind boggling. But I will share this....

I love the segway from Thanksgiving to the holiday that I'm not mentioning yet.  Just so you know, I order my Unmentionable picture and am writing my Unmentionable letter.  Juanito got the Unmentionable decorations down the other night and started putting up the Unmentionable lights with the assistance of The Boy.  Also we're picking out the Unmentionable tree tomorrow so we can blow up Unmentionable, Gangam-style, on Sunday. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

You've Been Warned

Such a big weekend and there are so many stories to tell….where to begin? First, Thanksgiving parade with The Boy was fun. He loved Charlie Brown but mainly because he had a football. I don’t think he understood that they were ginormous balloons. Since we were up early, we watched the CBS coverage of the parade, which is NOT the Macy’s Parade. Kind of a letdown if I am to be honest. The rest of Thanksgiving was a jumble of family and list making and researching the ads and researching again. Needless to say, The Boy did not nap. So we played and watched movies and ate chips and dip (actually we filled up on chips and dip) and went through the ads, or at least I did.

After dinner we did not stick around for pie because I had a date with Schmacey and Schmaren at 7 pm at my house. We were loaded with sale bills and lists and ready to go. We hit up Walmart, Target, Kohls and Old Navy before dropping dead due to exhaustion at 2:30 am. Schmaren was back up at 4:30 am to go to Cabela’s. God bless her sleep-deprived heart. But I was successful in getting ALL of my Christmas shopping done. Everything! Everyone! There is such a sense of accomplishment that I can’t begin to explain. This is why I do Black Friday. Yes, there is pushing. Yes, there are lines like nothing I would ever contend with. I don’t drive on freeways during rush hour because I hate lines. But there is something about the camaraderie of complete strangers that makes this congestion tolerable. The method we’ve created is that one person hangs out with the cart and the other people go out looking for a few items. So in Walmart I hid in the bedding isle and Schmacey and Schmaren kept returning with new things. Schmaren brought back six Monster High dolls because Schmacey and I both needed one and she wasn’t sure which one so she grabbed two of each. This was how we rolled through each store. And man it was fun. Despite the rather ghetto man in line next to me in Walmart who kept telling this story of how he was threatening people for the scooters (scooters? Really? This is what we brawl over?) And the unfortunate number of people who decided that the holidays meant no bath, it was fun! The back end of Schmacey’s Yukon was packed almost to the top and damn I was tired when we made it home. (Seriously felt hung over the next day) but I so enjoy those two girls and any time spent with them is a blast.

After sleeping forever (Thank you Juanito!) we got all gussied up (yes I sound like my Grandma there) and went downtown for our family photos. I am playing around with those and will order my Christmas cards soon. Maybe tonight depending on the Cyber Monday sales. After photos, Juanito headed out of town with some friends for a weekend at The Dunes. He was reluctant to go because of the drive, but I pushed because we parents need breaks from being the roles that we accumulate as we get older. Some times we just need to be us and if that involves quad at high speeds through the sand dunes of the Mohave desert, then so be it. As long as he comes back in one piece and with a smile that is all I ask. And he did.

The rest of the weekend I spent with my niece Red and we had a glorious time. I’ll write about that later. So another successful Black Friday under my belt – yay! I normally refrain from too much Christmas until the first of December, but be warned it’s my most favoritest holiday of all.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Plan

So for the next few days I get to steep in family, food, fun and shopping. This is my thanksgiving weekend! Here is the plan:

Cinnamon rolls and the Thanksgiving parade. We don’t leave until Santa shows up! I’m curious to see if the parade will be entertaining for The Boy this year. After the parade we start the holiday madness.

First we head out to my parent’s house where I will force everyone to go through the sale bills and make their Christmas lists. These lists will be typed up and distributed throughout the family because come December 18th Dad is gonna ask, “What does your mother want for Christmas?” and I can tell him to check out the list. While some people’s lists have been a few columns long on legal paper (Cee) others have only had three items (GG). Before their Thanksgiving dinner is served at noon we will skedaddle out to Juanito’s parent’s house. There we will put The Boy down for a much need nap and gorge ourselves on chips and dip. I will plan my shopping adventures that are starting earlier and earlier these days. When The Boy wakes up we will do our thanksgiving dinner. We will promptly leave because I’ve got a date with Schmacey and Schmaren to stand in line for Monster High Dolls and Legos and , according to the Christmas angels I pulled from the Christmas tree at work, a Dream Light pillow pet (dog) and Barbie and accessories (because that bitch never travels light). Oh and then Cabela’s because apparently that scope is a good deal and if you’re gonna get Chad one I want one too…..

If we sleep then we‘re lucky, but if not that’s how we roll. God speed all my other Black Friday Shoppers

Thanksgiving Post

As it is Wednesday before Thanksgiving I thought I would cast aside my doom and gloom postings that I’ve been having lately and focus on fun and giving thanks. And in by doing so I want to look back on a few Thanksgivings.

The Early Thanksgivings
Growing up in Nebraska for the short time that I did I very distinctly remember holidays. They were split between my grandparents’ homes, Thanksgiving at Grandma A’s house meant Christmas at Grandma and Grandpa’s house asn that switched every year. Grandma A’s house was a little white house that had two bedrooms and an attic that was scary and fun. The front porch was pretty empty since the door that every entered through was the enclosed back porch. I found out later that the porch and the bathroom where added at some point after my Dad was a kid. Its hard to imagine that my Dad had an outhouse. Anyways, my Dad’s family is on the bigger side, seven boys and one girl, my Dad is the youngest. When we still lived in the town that my Dad was born in (and we were born there too) I had a few uncles and their families who lived in the same small town. But come the holidays pretty much everyone came home. I remember Grandma's long drive way being jam packed with cars as people drove in from other places and my cousins, being significantly older than me, had their cars too. What that house must have looked like from the road, teeming with people.

In the house crammed Uncle Verne, Aunt Marilyn, their boys Greg and Brad; Uncle Von and Aunt Gwen and their kids Holly, Heidi and Heath, Aunt Maryann and Uncle Dave from Lincoln with their daughters Kelly and Lori; Uncle Richard and Aunt Bobbie also from Lincoln with their daughters Angie and Joni; Uncle Joyce and Aunt Laura rarely made it out to the eastern part of the state for the holidays but when they did they brought their boys Mark, Steve and Danny. Uncle Gale and Aunt Adell would drive down from Minnesota a few years and bring with them Chad, Todd and Ryan. Then Uncle Gary and Aunt Jan would drive down from Omaha with Trevor and Shannon. Add in our family of five and that brought the grand total to 38 people all crammed into a little white house on the other side of the train tracks.

Growing up everyone smoked because it was the 80s and that’s what everyone did. I remember a vast majority of the adults would be on the little porch where it would be cold since it wasn’t insolated but ventilated for the smokers. Everyone brought a dish and the dining room table would be covered in a smorgasbord of food. When the food was ready Grandma A, decked out in her holiday polyester pants and sweat, would gruffly tell everyone to “come and eat.” My aunts would sing the Doxology with a few kids joining in and the men shuffling their feet and my Mom would inevitably harmonize because she can’t stop herself. Then it was men first and then kids and then the women to fill their plates. Card tables were set up where there was room and if you got a seat you must be higher up on the ladder than others. I remember eating on the floor at the coffee table with my middle sister a lot. Writing this now I can smell the bread baking and heard the floor boards creak with the weight of rambunctious kids. I can hear the different conversations and smell the smoke that would waft in from the porch. I hear my Mom’s voice telling a story (she’s a good story teller) and the laughter above all else.

We say that my Dad’s family isn’t very communicative or demonstrative in their love, which is true. But these memories I hold dear to me because they are the foundation of my Thanksgiving. It doesn’t matter where you are as long as you’re surrounded by family or those you call family.

A Sunny Thanksgiving

The first Thanksgiving in Phoenix was hard for my parents I think. I was nine and as long as I was with my family I guess I didn't know any better. But my mom missed her parents and I think my dad missed his family and I think that void was felt by everyone, even Muffie our family dog. My Mom tried hard to make the day festive, even when I know her heart wasn’t in it. To add to the lack of family, the weather didn’t help much. It was in the upper 70s making the sweaters that we would have normally worn with turtle necks and corduroys stifling. We had our turkey dinner on a picnic table in our back yard under the one sad little tree and the blazing sun. My middle sister and I made pilgrim bibs for everyone to wear, God bless us, even Dad wore one. This was the year of that Mom was attacked by the Indians (she walked into a tree branch and it scratched her face). It also started the tradition of calling home for the holidays. 

This year it will be 80 degrees for Thanksgiving Day.  Its hard to get in the holiday mood for so many when its vacation weather.  But honestly, while I have great memories of Thanksgiving in Nebraska, this is how Thanksvgiving is for me.  Shorts and flip flops and turkey and stuffing, they all go hand in hand. I've had Thanksgiving in Nebraska as an adult and while it was toasty and warm, it wasn't better.  I was still with family and we still ate way too much and laughed too loudly and planned our Black Friday shopping.

The Next Level
As the years went on, my family created our own traditions and our own sense of Thanksgiving sans snow and chilly weather. Once Juanito and I started dating, seriously, that meant combining holidays. It was at this point many many years ago that I said I will spend Thanksgiving with your family as long as I get Christmas morning with my family. I didn’t know that I set precedence for years and years to come. So Thanksgiving of 2002 was spent with my future in-laws. It was strange to say the least. There weren’t mounds of food that my Mom always prepares even when they say the budget won’t allow it. There wasn’t the constant noise of kids and the hustle and bustle of people and dogs and comings and goings and animated conversations and football games turned up so that someone can hear it over the noise. It was just us, my in-laws and my sister in law and her boyfriend at the time. It was calm and quiet and just different. There was no turkey, instead like a turkey roll. There weren’t enough of us to warrant a full turkey I guess. The TV was turned off and music was played and wine was served, but we were all in relaxed clothes, nothing dressy or fancy. I was so on edge being with his family that I didn’t appreciate it until I went back to my parent’s house the next day and the majority of the family was still there being loud and running amok. I realized that constant commotion is not necessarily part of Thanksgiving. And while it might make it fun, so does giving your future mother in law too much wine ‘cuz it makes her silly.

So where ever you are this Thanksgiving, stuck in a too small house with too much family, or braving your new traditions or getting drunk with your family, may you be surrounded by love and thankful for your surroundings.