Monday, December 29, 2008

Haven't Blogged in a While






Had a very nice couple of days w/ my family. Things are starting to wind down. Grammie & Pop are heading home Tuesday morning and Steve's family is starting out Wednesday morning so they can be home New Year's Day for the Penn State game. They made it here in one day but I don't think they'll do that on the way back. They've been talking about driving to the Chattanooga Aquarium from here. They've also talked about going to the McWane Center on Tuesday.

Saturday we opened presents when XXXXX, XXXXX and the kids got here and then we went to the zoo. What an incredible night. The weather couldn't have been more perfect and we had so much fun looking at all the lights. We tried to go to Davenports for pizza but the wait was over an hour long. The kids were so good at the zoo. We took 2 cars and prior to heading to the zoo Mom, Bethany and I went to the Smith's Variety in Downtown Homewood and we also hit the one in Mt. Brook. We had some time to spare so we walked thru the Botanical Gardens. Obviously the gardens weren't in full bloom but the Chinese gardens were pretty nice to walk around.

Sunday we all just kind of hung around in our jammies and played games and relaxed. There was football going on (freakin' Jets!) and I made a tray of ziti and a salad for dinner.

Today we had a 10 AM appointment at Sear's to have a big family portrait taken. Mom & Dad wore white shirts, my family wore black and XXXXX's all wore gray. Considering that there were 10 of us, the photo session went pretty quickly. Bethany had lots of buy-one/get-one coupons and Pop was able to use his old Sear's discount. I had the photo of my 2 girls cropped and turned into black & white. I also turned the photo of the 4 of us into a black and white. We did a photo of all 4 grandchildren, Grammie & Pop w/ the kids, all 10 of us, etc. On our way to lunch at the food court, we stopped at Build A Bear so XXXXXXX could make a bear (it's actually a kitty cat). After lunch the guys drove to Legion Field for the Pappa John's Bowl (Rutgers vs. NC State). XXXXXXX & her moth went home so XXXXXXX could take a nap. The rest of us went to see Desperaux. Very cute movie. My brother is craving Chipolte for dinner so we'll meet the guys when they start heading home.


Chris has agreed to let T have a big New Year's Eve party. God help me. She's swears she's gonna clean prior to and after her party. Yeah right.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Hope Everyone had a Wonderful Christmas




our's was very nice and relaxing. Not sure what time the girls got up but they let me sleep in. I think KJ finally woke me up around 8:30 - 9 AM. We told KJ the puppy was her Christmas gift (she willingly said she'd give up all her Christmas gifts if she could get a puppy) but she still somehow managed to get an iPod and an iHome from us, a Nintendo DS from Grammie & Pop. a Wii game and 2 games for the DS. T's "main" present was a digital camera and she also got a pair of black suede boots that she's been wanting. T also got an Alabama Houndstooth ball cap that she's had her eye for a year or 2 (holy cow was that hard to find! especially after the big win over Auburn! I had to find it on e-bay). T also got a pair of Brighton earrings that she picked out.
Last night Austin came over for a little while and we played a fun game called Apples to Apples. The dealer flips over a card w/ a description on it: Loyal. Sexy. Awesome. Micheanous, Boring. You have 7 cards in your hands and annonymously lay down a card that best meets that description (some of the cards we had included: Tom Hanks, Nuclear Power Plant, French Wine, Republicans, the Titanic, Trampoline, Toasted Marshmallows, Frank Lloyd Wright, The 70's, the Beatles, Gingko Tree, Rain). The dealer then chooses the card he thinks best matches the original card. It was really funny because if you didn't have a good card, you just had to wing it. For example, I turned over the card "sexy" and Chris put down Pirate. Voila. A pirate is always sexy. He won. We also watched the new Batman DVD.
So we are now anxiously awaiting my brother's arrival. They made great time and made the drive in one day. Not sure what time they actuallly left PA but they were in Cincinnati mid-morning. They went to the Kenwood Towne Center to stretch their legs and let the kids run around.
Chris & KJ spent the afternoon at the lax store (even though we weren't officially open, Chris still had a bunch of people stop by). They went to lunch at 5 Brothers and shopped at Brookwood mall.

Monday, December 22, 2008

baby It's cold outside!

Wow! What in the world happened to our 70 degree weather? Last Thursday it was so warm I had the A/C on in the house. Yesterday and today the heat's been clicking on. Supposed to warm up again toward the end of the week which is when my brother & his family will get here. Maybe they'll be happy to get out of the snow and cold in PA. The kids can play outside if they like and we won't be freezing our butts off the night we go to the zoo to see the Zoolight Safari.


I'll never forget the one year we took the kids to the Bronx Zoo to see the lights -- it was freezing!!! KJ was really little, she was still in the stroller. We had her so bundled up she could barely move! I'm thinking that was right after 9/11. We went home that Christmas and went to the Bronx Zoo one night and the next night we went into the city to see the tree and the Christmas windows at Sak's, Lord & Taylor, etc. We left KJ home w/ my brother and she got really sick and had some really bad diapers. I thought my brother was gonna kill me when we got home! ha! ha! That was a weird time in the city. I actually remember feeling extremely safe that night. I don't like crowds (I'm too freakin' short! all I see is everyone's backs!) but the police presence was very strong. 9/11 was still fresh on everyone's mind, there was still a big clean-up going on and you could tell everyone was just trying to get back to normal.


Last year when we went into the city it was fairly warm. At one point I actually took my jacket off and walked around because the sun was out and I had a heavy sweater underneath my coat. We also try to get a profressional family taken of the family in front of the tree at Rockefeller Center when we can. In last year's photo we all have our coats off (and last year's photo was the photo in which T really surpassed me in height. Big time.). My girls absolutely LOVE going into the city. I think it's one of the things they really look foward to when we drive up North. They love Times Square, 5th Avenue, Radio City, FAO, the American Girl store, the Hard Rock (you know -- all the touristy stuff!). We also had a nice family walk thru Central Park last year.

So, since I'm being melancholy and thinking about NY (pizza and bagels, oh my!), today's photos will reflect Christmas in the City.


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Trixie's First Day


Trixie had a great day today; last night wasn't so great. She cried and whimpered a lot. It was so sad . . . her first night away from her mama. We're gonna try to crate-train her and today she crawled in her crate all by herself and took a little nappie. We're also trying paper-training but it's not working out so well. I'll get her to the paper and then she'll take a step off and pee on the floor. Today we starting taking her outside and that seems to be working better.

Austin & T exchanged Christmas gifts last night. They went to Johnny Carino's for dinner and to see Twilight (I think I'm the only person on the planet who hasn't seen it yet). He bought her a beautiful pair of ruby earrings (her birthstone). She bought him concert tickets to Motley Crue and Hinder for February. He's over tonight and they're watching movies.

Got a lot of work done in the house today. Chris vacuumed (since he's the only one who knows how to use the damn vacuum he bought). We got a lot of stuff put away in the attic and the guest room is ready for Grammie & Pop's arrival Monday evening. I also wrapped a lot of presents.
Funny thing happened today -- the top half of our Christmas tree lights went out the other day. Chris either had to take off all the lights or bundle the half that didn't work and shove them into the tree. So, he bundled the half that didn't work and shoved them into the tree and you really couldn't see the clump unless you were looking for it. He strung up new set of lights on the top half of the tree. About an hour later, he realized the clump is now working. Our tree is kind of crazy looking right now. There's lights everywhere.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Trixie !!!


Drove to Pell City this afternoon to pick up our new puppy, Trixie. I can't believe how teeny-tiny she is. Much smaller than Buddy was at this age. She was really good during the car ride home and slept on KJ's lap the whole time. Trixie came in the house, walked around for a little bit, peed on the floor and fell asleep in her little doggie bed for almost 2 hours.
T met us in the garage when we got home and quickly grabbed the dog from KJ. She gave us a really hard time about getting antoher dog but admitted to me yesterday that she didn't want another dog because she was afraid she'd get attached to it the way she was attached to Buddy. Anyway, I think Trixie has won her over. She told me that Trixie is cute but don't tell KJ.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Got a nice surpise tonight

Chris came home from his Christmas party w/ a surpise for me -- a Garmin! They had "door prizes" and stuff at his office party and he won it! Since he already has one in his car, I got it. The really funny part is I was bugging KJ today about getting me a Garmin. This afternoon she told me they ran a bunch of errands last night while I had my party and they went to Office Depot. I jokingly asked her if they bought me the pink Garmin I've had my eye on and she said no, they looked for it but couldn't find it.

Let the Festivities Begin

Yay! Christmas break officially started at 1 PM today. I like having the girls home and I'm especially looking foward to not having dance or any other place to be for the next 2 weeks!

Had a good time last night at our annual dirty Santa party; goof friends, good food, good gifts to steal. I love the silver snowman dish I stole from Kelley (who may have stole it from someone else). It looks perfect on my coffee table. T met w/ some friends this afternoon for lunch at our favorite Mexican restaurant and had a dirty Santa, too. She got some movie passes (perfect!).

We are having the craziest weather. My car gauge read 73 this afternoon. I can't stand it. I feel like I live in FL or something. Doesn't even feel like Christmas and I'm so jealous of everyone up north who is having a snow day. There's nothing better than waking up, seeing all that snow and going back to bed. Miss those days!

Tomorrow's the "BIG" day -- get ready to be bored to tears w/ pics of our new puppy!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Can you believe this weather?

At first I thought maybe I was going thru menapause a bit early. This is crazy. I have the A/C back on in the house today. I'm doing some cleaning and last minute stuff to get ready for tonight so I'm working up a sweat.

Went to KJ's 3rd grade Christmas program at school today. Very cute. Short, sweet and to the point. The kids sang a couple of Christmas carols and then we went up to her room for some crafts and a pancake breakfast. We have a room "dad" this year rather than a room "mom" and he's doing quite a decent job.

T gets out of school around 1 PM today; KJ her regular time. Both girls get out at 1 PM tomorrow. I've heard from the breeder and KJ & I have plans to meet her @ 2 PM to pick-up Trixie and bring her home with us. Can't wait!!!! I printed out the picture the breeder sent us and KJ took it to school to show everyone today.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

It's Pouring today and I have NO plans to go Anywhere

I have a lot I need to get done today. Thursday night is my annual Dirty Santa w/ a bunch of girlfriends. I'm hosting this year. I need to get some cleaning done and i have a lot of laundry to do. The girls don't have dance tonight so I have all day and most of the evening to accomplish stuff. I need to wash my wineglasses, make sure I have everything I plan to serve tomorrow, etc.

Thursday KJ has a 9:30 AM Christmas program and a pancake breakfast immediately following. I think T gets out of school fairly early on Thursday and again on Friday. Friday afteroon she's having a dirty santa w/ some friends too. I think while she's at her dirty santa lunch, KJ & I will get some last minute stuff done. Not sure when T & Austin are going to exchange gifts. I think he's going out of town on Tuesday.

Yesterday I met Chris for lunch and took packages to PakMail to be shipped out. I think everything should get there in plenty of time. I also ran to Bed Bath & Beyond for some candles and tea-lights. I went to PetSmart and bought Trixie a new bed. We need to get a crate before we get the dog Saturday afteernoon. My Christmas cards are out. I think the only thing I have left to do is wrap presents. I also need to think about my nightly menu's for when my family's here. It's basically going to be a revolving door and we'll almost have 2 Christmas's by the time my brother & his family get here Saturday.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Top 10 Worst Christmas Songs (according to Spinner.com)


Here is a list of the top ten worst Christmas songs according to Spinner.com.
1) Cyndi Lauper- “Christmas Conga”
2) Destiny’s Child- “8 Days of Christmas”
3) No Doubt- “Oi to the World”
4) The Ramones- “Merry Christmas (I Don’t Wanna Fight Tonight)“
5) Clay Aiken- “Merry Christmas With Love”
6) The Beach Boys- “Santa’s Beard”
7) Bruce Springsteen- “Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town”
8) The Smashing Pumpkins- “Christmastime”
9) Paul McCartney- “Wonderful Christmastime”
10) Madonna- “Santa Baby”

I have issues w/ #3, #4, #7, #8 and #10. I happen to love the No Doubt song! It's punk and Margaret & I used to play it in our 18-month room at Playschool and the baby's used to rock out and jump up & down. Really got them moving. I've only heard the Ramone song a couple of times but hey! Who doesn't like Joey Ramone??? #7, The Bruce Springsteen version of "Santa Claus is coming to Town" is a classic. Hands down. And this is coming from someone who HATES Springsteen. The Smashing Pumpkins song is a little creepy, kind of spooky, a little pretty at the same time. I personally like it when artists unknown for a certain genre, step out side the box and create something magical or meaningful to them. Let's face it, how many happy, jolly Christmas songs can so many people listen to? I'm not always in the mood for Rudolph or Frosty. #10, "Santa Baby" Honestly, this song has been done many, many times before and will be done many, many times in the future. Madonna, Eartha Kitt, you've got to have the right voice and attitude to sing this one.

Regarding the rest of the songs on this list, I've either never heard of them (Christmas Conga???) or just don't really care about Clay Aiken or Destiny's Child.

Now, for some of my personal Christmas Favorites (in no particular order and there's probably going to be more than 10):

#1. There's a BonJovi song I like but the name escapes me right now (I haven't gotten out my Christmas CD's yet). I think it's "Please be home Christmas" or something like that. His voice is raspy and sexy (and my husband likes the video w/ Cindy Crawford).
#2. Wilson Phillips "Hey Santa"
#3. "Holly Jolly Christmas" by Burl Ives
#4. "Merry Christmas Darling" by the Carpenters
#5. "Dominic the Italian Christmas Donkey"
#6. "Hanukkah Song" by Adam Sandler (OK, ya got me on this one; not "technically" a Christmas but a funny, inventive, imaginative Holiday song all the same).
#7. "Wreck the Malls"
#8. "12 Pains of Christmas"
#9. That song by Trans-Siberian Orchestra
#10. "I'm Getting Nuttin for Christmas"
#11: "Christmas in Hollis" by Run DMC
#12: "Christmas all Over Again" by Tom Petty
Please share your favorites and not-s0-favorite Christmas songs in the comment section!

Monday, December 15, 2008

bush & shoes

Did you see that reporter at the Iraqi press conference this weekend? He took off his shoes and threw them at President Bush. Bush didn't' really miss a beat. When asked about the incident, he said it didn't bother him -- it was like making a speech and having someone scream your name or having someone give you a wave while driving but they don't use all 5 fingers. Apparently throwing shoes is a sign of disrepect in the Iraqi culture. Shoot. My mother could fit right in over there. She used to throw her shoes at us when she was on the phone and my brother & I were acting up in the background.

Dreary, rainy day in the Ham. Christmas cards are done, just need some stamps. Beds are made already, dishwasher is filled and going, load of laundry going, too. I have to clean up my guest room and get some stuff in the attic before my folks get here. I think they'll be here next Monday and my bother and his family will be here the Saturday after Christmas.

Some Christmas movies I'd like to see: Marley & Me, Bedtime Stories w/ Adam Sandler. T & I still haven't seen Twilight. T & I heard on the radio the other day that the director will not be back for the second Twilight movie which has really upset fans. They felt that her direction and vision made the book come to life. Also, they said the young man who played Jacob Black may not be back. After the actor who plays Edward, he's the next popular character and the powers that be said they won't pay both of them big bucks.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Great Sunday


Slept pretty good last night; had a good breakfast (just a bagel and a cup of tea -- didn't have enough eggs for Chris to make us all bacon & eggs). We left the girls at home and headed out to do some Christmas shopping and got everything accomplished and bought at one store. I needed photo paper to print out our Christmas card photos and I bought another package of Christmas cards. Spent the majority of the afternoon writing out cards. Chris went to the lax fields today for the little fella's all-star try-outs. T should be doing some homework/studying and KJ has a friend over (GW). I'm tired of picking up from kids this weekend so I told her GW could come over but they will be doing most of their playing outside. They've been pretty good and have played on the swingset and the trampoline most of the time.

I've heard from our breeder regarding our little puppy, Trixie, that's what KJ & I have named her (see photo above!). Trixie will be ready to come home w/ us any time after 12/20 so I guess we'll be driving out to Talladega next Sunday to get her. I can't wait and KJ is just beside herself. Buddy basically had the run of the house and I think we're going to try to "crate" train her. We also looked at cute little doggie beds today. Since I'm a little too old to have another baby (and my darling daughters positively FREAK at the thought of a baby in the house), I guess a little puppy will have to do!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Pause my Playlist to Listen to This Video

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

www.cos4.blogspot.com

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Caylee??

As you've probably heard by now, they have found the body of a small child in FL near Caylee Anthony's grandparent's home. Chris & I watched Larry King late last night and he had the grandparents on (I think it was from Wednesday; they hadn't found this little body yet). I'm a bit of a news-hound and watch Nancy Grace and Greta Van(whatever her last name is) pretty religously. I found it kind of interesting that this little body was found nude. A couple of weeks ago on Nancy Grace they discussed how someone found a little girl's dress near the Orlando airport and everyone assumed it was Caylee's. Her mother's response from jail was: "Oh please, they haven't even found her clothes yet." Almost like she knew that the body was naked. This whole case is fascinating to me. The mother is a habitual liar and I feel so bad for the grandparents. Obviously their daughter, Casey, has severe emotional issues and Mr. & Mrs. Anthony have been dealing w/ this behavior for years. They seem like they have to walk on eggshells around their daughter (probably fearing for their little grand-daughter). The weird thing is, if Casey Anthony didn't want to be a mom anymore, I have a feeling the grandparents would have taken custody of the little girl in a heartbeat. It sounds like Casey has been unstable for so long that Casey and Caylee have been living w/ them off and on and the little girl even had a room in her grandparents house. My parents are at the age where several of their friends have had to take custody of their grandchildren and this is not an uncommon occurence. Lots of grandparents are raising grandchildren for whatever reason. If this body is not Caylee Anthony, then who is it?

Friday, December 12, 2008

2-hours

Wow, that 2 hour delay this morning was nice. We slept in, had a nice relaxing breakfast, no mad rush to get to school. Definately need more of those.

Last night the Dance Team and the dance classes at the high school put on a little show w/ some dances from the Nutcracker. We may or may not have video. Chris rushed in from Boaz and arrived just as the Bucanettes went on. He borrowed our friend's video camera, wasn't very familiar w/ it and tried to figure it out in the dark theater. I do have a couple of photos. The girls all looked great and performed very well. T was a bit nervous, though. I could see it in her face. She gets this panicked kind of look in her eyes.

After I dropped both girls to school I went grocery shopping. now I'm trying to get my Christmas cards done. KJ is having a couple girls sleep-over tonight. God help me!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

WOW! It's Thursday Already!

Still fighting thru this darn head cold. It's not bad enough to send me to back to bed for a couple of days, it's just lingering enough to annoy me. Sniffles and sneezing. I hate to take anything because over the counter stuff turns me into a zombie.

Beside the gift shopping, decorating, card writing, etc, this time of the year is so busy -- parties, dirty santa's, lots of last minute stuff. The freshman center was having a holiday party for the teachers so T brought in some chocolate chip cookies. KJ's school is having the same kind of party Friday morning so we'll make another batch of cookies tonight. KJ's "official" classroom party is next week. They are having a little program prior to the party and then going back to the classroom for a pancake breakfast. Trying to catch up on my laundry today. Tomorrow is PJ day @ KJ's school so I'm making sure she has clean PJ's. She also wants to wear a bathrobe.

Have you ever wanted to know how it feels to be totally pampered for the day -- treated like a super model or A-list celebrity?? I'm talking hair, make-up, clothes, hot shoes and then a have a photo session. Just once I'd like to have a nice photo of myself (I don't have to be naked like Jennifer Anniston on the last edition of GQ but I'd like to look half-way sexy). A nice photo -- one where someone didn't catch me eating, I'm not looking like a deer caught in the headlights, I don't have a stain on my shirt or someone isn't behind me making little "bunny ears." A photo I don't have to correct the red eye.







Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Tree has been Decorated,



boxes are put away. Yay! I just have to finish taking down my regular everyday china and put my Christmas china in the cabinet. I'm definitely decorating a little bit more "kid-friendly" this year taking into consideration my younger holiday visitors. The Fisher-Price nativity set is on the end table instead of the crystal nativity set and the cheap tacky ornaments are on the mid- to bottom levels of the tree.
Every year I buy the girls an ornament with the intent that they'll take the ornaments with them when they move out and start their own homes. Well, this year the tables were turned. After the tree was decorated, T handed me a Vera Bradley bag. She bought me one of the new Vera Bradley ornaments! I was so surprised and very, very touched. KJ, on the other hand, had a major freak-out. Apparently, when we were at the Summit a couple of weeks ago wandering around the Vera Bradley store, KJ pointed out the ornaments and said, "Mom would really like this." T said she would buy it when she went back the next day w/ friends and they could split the cost. KJ never gave T her half of the cost of the ornament so T just gave it to me from her. KJ got very, very upset and cried and said they were supposed to share it, it was all her idea, etc. Honestly, I thought the whole thing was very sweet. I don't like surprises at all but tonight I was truly surprised and happy that my girls thought of me so early in the season and on their own. I can't wait for them to go shopping together for mine and Chris's presents when they're older. I have many fond memories of me and my brother shopping together for my parents when I started to drive.










Still haven't taken a single Christmas photo for cards this year and not a single card has been written out. I still have some shopping to do, also. Nothing major. I never wander around the stores aimlessly, I always have a game plan and a list in hand.
KJ's having a little holiday gathering at our house Friday night. She wants some girls to sleep over, watch Christmas movies and have hot chocolate. Maybe a s'more or two.

What's That Elf who Wants to Be a Dentist?



Having some dental work today. I'm having a crown put on from way back on the end of September when I had that root canal. We've had some insurance changes over the last couple of months so I put it off as long as I could. The edges of the tooth are a little rough so the inside of my mouth is getting rubbed raw and it's been bothering me the last couple of days.

Little confusion lat the basketball game last night. Apparently the stereo equipment the dance team used the previous night had disappeared so they did not get to perform at half-time of the freshman game. Their sponsor wanted them to wait around to dance in between the end of the freshman game and the start of the JV game provided they found stereo equipment in time. Well, that didn't work out for us. KJ had dance @ 5:30 PM and T teaches the baby class at 5:45 PM. So, KJ ended up being a little late to her dance a few minutes late but T made it in time to teach. She was still in her little red Christmas outfit from dance team and taught the class while wearing it and all the little girls told her she looked like an elf.

I had a carful of lax equipment last night and met Chris @ the store after I dropped everyone off @ dance. Picked up KJ from her class and grabbed a bite to eat at Sal's (our regular Tuesday hang-out).



I've already warned the girls that tonight we will be taking photos for Christmas cards no if's and's or but's about it. I saw the funniest book the other night at Barnes & Noble. I don't know what the name of it was but it was a compilation of really bad Santa photos. You know the kind: kids screaming and crying, reaching out for mom or dad to get them the hell off Santa's lap, etc.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

What a weird Weather Day

the temperature outside (according to my car) is about 70 degrees. However, the wind is howling and it looks like it's going to rain any minute.

Got my haircut today. Yay!!! I needed it so bad! Jeffrey had a sign on his mirror that prices went up effective October 1 so I know I haven't been in since then. Honestly, I think my last haircut w/ August when the girls went back to school.

Ran to the mall for T earlier this afternoon. She needs a couple of grab bag/dirty santa type gifts over the next couple of weeks for various things. She has a 4:30 PM basketball game tonight, KJ has dance @ 5:30 PM and T teaches her little baby class at 5:30 PM today. KJ gets out of class @ 7:15 PM, T gets out at 8:45 PM.

Our tree is up in the living room but that's about it. No lights, no decorations. Maybe Chris can get the lights on tonight while the girls are at dance. We'd like to decorated tomorrow but he has boy's all-star lax practice. I don't know when this tree is ever going to get done. Maybe we'll just leave it as is.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Freshman Dance Team Slide Show

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busy weekend / glad to be home



We were in ATL for a girls lax tourney this weekend and I have never been so freakin' cold in my entire life. Seriously. Not in all my 28+ years living in the Northeast have I ever been that cold (all those youth football games I cheered at, all those JV and Varsity football games I cheered at, years of skiing, a boyfriend at college in Vermont, etc.). Saturday was a gray, damp, very overcast day and there were actually a couple of snow flurries while the games were being played. Sunday was a bright sunny day but the wind was horrifying. One of the dad's bought everyone those "hot hands" and I put them in my shoes. I was prepared w/ blankets, sweatshirts, jackets, scarves, hats and mittens but my little toesies were icicles! The goalie's mom brought a bunch of sleeping bags so KJ mostly hung out w/ their youngest daughter during the tournament to stay warm.
The girls played great on Saturday winning both of their games. Sunday, not so great. Couldn't get a thing going. I don't know if they were just cold and tired and wanted to get the hell home or what. On Saturday T had a really nice play -- she rolled thru a couple of defensive players and shot but hit the bars. It was a really loud "ding" so I know she had some power behind her shot.

I was so exhausted during the ride home I was out like a light before we even hit the highway. I mean I was sleeping HARD. I hate sleeping in hotel rooms so I didn't get any sleep for 2 nights. Between lack of sleep and being partially frozen, I think I went into one of those cryogenic states. ha! ha! I woke up on the outskirts of B'ham.
Tonight T had to dance at the freshman's girls basketball game. The dance team did their new Christmas routine and it was awesome! They looked like the Rockettes! They did a kickline and dropped into splits (just like the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders do!). The Christmas costumes are really, really cute ---- red, one-shouldered sequined skirted leotards with white marabou feathers, white gloves trimmed in marabou and marabou ponytail holders. Austin came to watch T dance so we invited him to join us for dinner. We grabbed a bite to eat at Buffalo Wild Wings and a bunch of lax players were there, too.


ATL w/ Eva Marie

On our way to T's lacrosse tournament in Atlanta we stopped at Mel & Lou's on the way to visit w/ Eva. Uncle Chris had met her several times, the girls & I had never seen her. What a cutie! She was a little cranky -- she had gotten some immunizations earlier in the day but it was still so fun to snuggle her!





Wednesday, December 3, 2008

No Strep, No Mono

School nurse called yesterday mid-morning and said T had a fever. Picked her up at school, she slept for a while but came with me when I picked up KJ from the carpool line. KJ got into the car, took one look at T and said, "What is all over your neck???" T had some type of weird, bumpy red rash down the one side of her body from her ear down her neck and shoulder. It went away after an hour or so but I immediately thought it was strep. Took her to the pediatrician this morning, they did the strep test. Not strep. With her lethargy, sore throat, fever, etc they also did a finger prick and tested her for mono. Not mono either. So, after her doctor's appointment we did went any red-blooded American women would do on a beautiful winter's day -- we went shopping!

T had seen a pair of black suede boots she wants but when we went to look at them today, they were a little more than I'm willing to spend right now. I'd put them away for her for Christmas but that doesn't always work so well in this house. We shopped around a bit to see if we could find something similar but we didn't. We went into the Brighton store and I put a few things on a wish list so the girls and Chris could pick something out for me for Christmas. When we left the mall we called Chris to join us for lunch at Moe's. During the short, 2-minute ride from the Galleria to Moe's I joked w/ T and said I wonder how long it will take the lady from the Brighton store to call Dad. Sure enough, Chris walks into Moe's and says, "So I hear you were at the Brighton store today." On our way home from the Moe's T stopped and had her eyebrows waxed (TMI???). I don't know why she just won't pluck them like a normal person.

You've Got to be Kidding Me!

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D94RBG180&show_article=1

This man hasn't even been sworn into office and a county in Alabama is already honoring him with a paid holiday for it's county workers? He has served less than 200 days during his entire political career and some people are already comparing him to the likes of Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King. This guy has some very, very big shoes to fill (and a lot of gas tanks! gotta get that free gas, don't cha know!)

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

LaLaLarry Langford

Found this picture of my neice on my sister-in-law's sister's Facebook page (does that make any sense?). Anyway, I think the little peanut is trying to call her Aunt Valerie and say, "I miss you and can't wait to come to your house for Christmas!!! You're the best Aunt on the planet!!!" That's what I think.
When KJ was little and had a bit of a speech impediment, we worked really hard on her "L's" and use to say, LaLaLarry because she would say Wawwy. Anyway, yesterday, the illustrious and colorful and often visionary Mayor of Birmingham, Larry Langford, was indicted on federal charges including bribery. This is the numskull who wants to bring the Olympics to the city of Birmingham and who wants to build a dome stadium in a crumbling, deteriorating downtown. Don't get me wrong, I like LaLaLarry. He's just a little out there sometimes.


This house has been fighting the crud for several days now. I think T brought it home w/ her from the Auburn/Alabama game. She stayed home yesterday and barely moved off the couch. I wasn't much better but was able to get a few things done. She went to school today but the Freshmen Center called and she had a fever and I needed to get her. I woke up in the middle of the night and moved to the couch -- I had a bit of a fever, sore throat, headache. Chris got the girls off to school and let me sleep it off. I feel much better. In any event, neither of them are going to dance tonight.


Chris found out last night that the the girls All-star team will not be participating in the January tournament in Tampa. Apparently, due to financial considerations, several other teams had to drop out of the competition. I think they heard BamaLax was coming to town and they got scared. That's just my personal opinion. T's pretty disappointed but the girls will still play in the Atlanta tournament this weekend.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Gingy Bread or Gingy Ale???

Thank you T-bone. I now have whatever illness you have had the last couple of days. Body aches, fever, headache, stomach ache and my throat is KILLING me! Guess it will be a diet of soup and hot tea for today at least.

Last night Chris & KJ made a Gingerbread house. It's very cute. Can't tell who had more fun, Chris or KJ?
KJ was NOT a happy camper this morning. First day back to school is always rough. It was very windy last night and very noisy upstairs. The wind whips around the corner of the house and makes a very scary, ghostly sound. I think she had a hard time sleeping. Then, when I woke her up she complained she was freezing. She got a little excited on the drive to school when she saw flurries and called me to tell me it was snowing. The "snow" lasted all of about 3 minutes. She was hoping to have an emergency snow dismissal at some point today.
Still working on my holiday decorations. Not feeling good, not getting very far. T's home today so maybe I'll put her to work but then I'm afraid she'll get germs on everything.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Still Transitioning

Didn't get much accomplished yesterday regarding Thanksgiving/Christmas decorations. Chris & I basically relaxed on the couch and watched the Alabama game. KJ played at Evvy's most of the afternoon and T was at the game w/ friends. Chris worked at the lax store earlier in the day but closed in time for kick-off. He brought home Roly-Poly sandwiches for lunch and for dinner we ordered a pizza. So healthy.

T came home from the game feeling a little sick (she swears she only had a couple of beers at the fraternity) so we snuggled on the couch last night and watch Lord of the Rings 2. I think #3 is on tonight. She was supposed to have All-star lax practice this afternoon in preparation for their tournament in Atlanta this weekend. I woke her up around 10 AM and she was burning w/ fever. I gave her 2 tylenol and sent her back to bed. She's been laying on the couch most of the day in her jammies and had some soup for lunch. Chris, however, went to her All-star lax practice. He's such a goober. He bought himself a girls stick (very different from a boys stick) so he could get a feel for the game (that just what we need in this house -- more lacrosse equipment). Last night he was on some website and copied down a bunch of plays to teach the girls today.

Today I'm getting a lot done. All the Thanksgiving and Halloween stuff are packed away. I didn't put everything in the attic because Chris will need room to maneuver in there when he gets the tree and the big decorations out. I love setting my table and I love putting all my Santa's out. I also enjoy doing my kitchen. I try to make it look like a candy store and use a lot of candy and food as decorations. I'm also thinking of changing things up a bit this year. We've been in the house 9 years and I feel like every year it looks exactly the same. When Chris gets home later today he & his little partner in crime will do the outside lights and decorations. KJ asked him to stop at Michaels on his way home from practice today and buy her a gingerbread house kit and matching Santa hats for her & T for this year's Christmas picture. I just need him to bring home some milk. And maybe something for dinner.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Party Elves


So it's that time of year again when KJ's Elves come out to party. She technically only has one official Elf but she has some managed to identify every Christmas stuffed animal she owns as an Elf as long as it is wearing a red Santa hat, has a candy cane somewhere on it's body or is holding a present or a piece of holly. She's made beds for them in front of the fireplace and these damn Elves are like bad Gremlins on acid. The other morning the girl Elf was hanging from the living room chandelier. She had her boots on but no jacket. Not sure what happened there. The other morning the penguin was in the freezer. That was the same night we had a fire outside so I'm thinking he couldn't take the heat. This morning the Elves had cheeze-it crumbs and empty ginger ale cans all over the fireplace mantel. Must have been some party.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Nothing like having the phone ring @ 6AM


My dear, goofy, retired parents who have nothing but time on their hands must have hit the mall at the crack of dawn this morning (which is horribly ironic if you know anything about my family -- dad worked in retail for 40+ years and HATED to be anywhere near any type of store on his day off). Still not sure how my mother dragged him to the mall at 5 AM today. Anyway, they called the house around 6 AM (damn those old people and their new fangled cell phones!) wanting to know what kind of digitial camera T wants for Christmas. I let Chris deal with it. I think I would have hung up on my mother.

Today Chris is at the lax store. Oh the joys of owning your own business! All of the kids who work for us went out of town w/ their parents for the holidays therefore the bossman has to cover. It actually works out well -- Chris gets a lot of administrative stuff done when he's up there and, for some weird reason, I think he gets more customers than the boys. I think people see his car, stop in to say hello and end up buying stuff.

Today I plan to take down all the Thanksgiving decorations (yes, there are a lot of them) and start putting out my Christmas stuff. I think T has plans to go to Austin's for lunch this afternoon. Some of his family that couldn't make it for Thanksgiving dinner is coming over today. Not sure what's going on w/ tonight's football game. T really isn't sure if she's supposed to participate in pre-game. I'm starting to get a cold so I'm not sure if I'm going to deal w/ sitting in the bleachers. My eye is watering, my nose/throat are clogged up and I've been sneezing all morning.

Puppy Update: We did not get the Trixie from Talladega. The breeder finally returned my e-mail and said she had gone out of town last weekend and her daughter took a deposit from someone else. A little lack of communication on their part, total lack of doggie on ours.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Gobble, Gobble


Turkey Day is just about over. According to Chris, today's Turkey was one of my top 5. He said it was "ridiculously" good. As a matter of fact, he said the turkey was so good he was going to blog about it. Believe it or not, I didn't even have any. All day cooking and I didn't even have any turkey. I had plenty of mashed potatoes, plenty of stuffing (must be carb-loading) a couple of crescent rolls and I had tons of green beans. It's no secret that I don't like to cook or bake, however, I LOVE LOVE LOVE Thanksgiving. It's the one meal I can really, really "do." I even time everything just right.

T went to Austin's house around noon and met most of his family. She looked so pretty today in a gray sweater dress (that I "forced" her to wear). They came over to our house around 4 just as we were getting ready to eat. Austin said his mom's turkey was a little dry so he wanted to try mine. T didn't eat much (Austin's mom made a turkey AND a ham) but she was a trooper and helped me clean up the dishes and the kitchen. KJ helped peel some of the potatoes for dinner. She begged me to help but then got bored. Today KJ told me she can't wait until she's old enough to have a boyfriend. It was really cute. I think she has a little crush on Austin.

It's a pretty nice night out and Chris and the kids made a fire in the fire pit. Chris is getting VERY aggravated w/ one of our neighbors. Her dog(s) bark all the time. She's not home a lot and the dogs are beginning to get out of control. There have been nights were I can hardly hear the TV. It's really bugging Chris tonight because he's trying to relax w/ the kids on the back deck.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Getting ready for turkey day


Sunday night KJ had Magster and Evster sleep-over. The girls were really really good but made a big mess upstairs. It is now Wednesday and KJ is STILL cleaning up the mess. For some reason they like to try on her clothes and go thru her closet. Not the dress-up stuff but the everyday kind of clothes and they like to put on fashion shows.


I drove the girls home on Monday around 11 AM and had such a bad headache. I finally broke down and called my doctor. He phoned in a migraine prescription for me. I haven't had a chance to pick it up yet, though.


Tuesday I went grocery shopping and in the afternoon I drove T to the Summit to meet w/ friends. We shopped for a bit and then Chris met us up there and we all saw Madadgascar 2. OMG. I laughed my ass off. One of the funniest movies I've seen in a long time. The penguins and King Julian had much, much bigger parts in the sequel. Bernie Mac and Alec Baldwin were also really funny. After the movie we went to PF Changs for dinner. Delish! I had 2 Mai Tai's and was feeling pretty groovy!


Today, we're cleaning and baking in preparation for Turkey Day. It's just going to be the 4 of us for dinner (may be 3 depending what time T goes to Austin's, maybe 5 depending on what time they come over here). I think The Levs may join us for drinks and desserts later in the evening.


Have a Wonderful Thanksgiving !!!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Just Chillin'



KJ & I are relaxing today. I'm watching the Jets game eating some Smart Food (Jets are up @ the half), she's watching Suite Life of Zack & Cody (which I have to admit is a cute show. I also like iCarly on Nickelodeon). We have absolutely zero plans to leave the house today.


Chris & T are on their way home from Tampa. The BamaLax Girl's Elite Team won the Derek Pieper Memorial Cup earlier today so they'll be driving home as champions! They played 2 games yesterday and T scored in one of the games. Chris said she had an amazing goal in this morning's game and in the championship game she shot but hit the goalie in the foot. So now the Girl's team qualified for the NDP Tournament of Champions in Tampa in January. Chris's boy's team has already qualified so now it looks like the whole family will be going to Tampa. It was a big lacrosse weekend all-around: the Magic City Men's team had a tournament yesterday against teams from all over the southeast and 2 of Chris's All-star players are in Baltimore for the Diamond Showcase (they woke up yesterday to 22 degree weather and snow!).

We're still waiting to hear from the breeder in Talladega regarding the female shih-tzu we want. KJ is totally freakin' out because this lady hasn't returned our call from last night requesting directions. I don't know what KJ is going to do if she doesn't get this puppy.

Hopefully, this will be Trixie!!

I think T & I would like to see Twilight tmorrow. I'm hearing mixed reviews -- some critics are saying it was poorly made w/ cheesy graphics but definately hits it's target audience: 15-year old girls who read the books and their mom's. Um, yep. That's me & T (except she's only 14).

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Yard Sale Saturday


Let's see -- where to begin. KJ's girl scout troop spent the night at the McWane Center. Lindsey's mom drove the girls to the McWane Center and the troop spent the night in the lowel level (Worlds of Water or something like that). Instead of the submarine, they called it the "slumberine." Apparently it was very, very cold in the water level and one of the mom's got up in the middle of the night and left w/ her little girl. Lindsey & KJ got home around 8:30 AM and Lindsey stayed and played.

KJ & I are still working on our "puppy fund" and had our big yard sale today (more like I stood out in the freezing cold while she & Lindsey played inside in the nice warm, cozy house). Chris told her he'd give her half ($200) but she had to come up w/ the rest. She cleaned out her piggy bank and had $43 in change. We made a little over $80 at the yard sale. What a waste. I spent so much time yesterday setting up the tables in the garage. I really thought I was going to sell a lot of books. Guess I'll put them on e-Bay. Anyway, the dog lady said she would sell us the shih-tzu we want for $350. Looks like we'll be driving out to Talladega Sunday to pick-up "Trixie!"

Chris & T are having a good time in Tampa. T played 2 games today, won both and T scored in one of the games. Chris said it was a really nice goal. He said although they won the 2nd game, it was an ugly game and not very well played. This afternoon Chris was playing in a coaches game and I think T is supposed to play 2 more games Sunday. They'll probably get home very late Sunday night.

Psycho-Squirrel Update: I think Pyscho Squirrel is dead. Tonight KJ & I were watching TV and heard a loud BANG in our fireplace followed by a little squeal. I swear, it almost sounded human. Like a little pip-squeak kind of noise. Hope the little f**ker broke his neck in the fall.

Friday, November 21, 2008

It's Flippin' Cold Here!

I think today was a high of 44. The sun was shining and the sky was bright but it was pretty darn chilly! When Chris ordered sweats for the lax team he ordered me an extra pair. They are the comfiest sweat pants I have ever worn. I'm so short I always have issues w/ the length. This pair is a little long but not much. They have pockets and instead of elastic on the legs, it's a relaxed fit.

Got a lot done today. Did a lot of de-cluttering and stuff. Getting ready for my big garage sale. Hope the cold doesn't keep the yard salers away.

I think when Chris & T return this weekend we may have a new addition to our family. KJ & I have really worn Chris down on the whole puppy idea and we have the go ahead to get what we want (which is a female shih-tzu we can name Trixie). Boy, Taylor is going to be mad. She really, really, really does not want us to get another dog. I told her I'm going to teach the dog to pee in her shoes.

So I guess my little girl's growing up. She had a book fair at school today. Last night I told her I would come to school today to help her pick out some books. She said, "it's OK mom. I got it." She had $10 in her wallet and said she didn't need help at the book fair. So sad. Guess my book fair days are over.

Some miscellaneous random celebrity news: Pete Wentz & Ashlee Simpson had a baby boy they named Bronx Mowgli. Are you kidding me? Bronx? Mowgli? As in the Jungle Book?

Tonight (or actually Midnight) was the premiere of Twilight. I'd love to go tonight but I promised Taylor we could go one day next week.

Never saw this one coming: Paris Hilton and Benji Madden have broken up. Aaawwww

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Obits

Guess I need to start reading the obituaries for our hometown on-line like my friends Julie & Tracy do. Just found out today via Facebook that a boy we went to high school with passed away from an aneurysm. He was 41. His family's been thru a lot -- his older brother was killed in 9/11. From what the obit said, John had a couple of kids and he met his wife in high school but the obit didn't give her maiden name.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Screw the Special K

It has been very well established and discussed at length my lack of morning participation (lay men's terms: I'm not a morning person). My biggest gripe/complaint/pet peeve about the morning is the sound of a spoon clanking against a cereal bowl. It is quite possibly one of the most annoying sounds on the planet. It is my "nails against the chalkboard." This is why every human should eat pop-tarts for breakfast. Other than the crinkly foil wrapper, there's virtually no sound, there's no dishes to wash, they are available in a variety of flavors to meet every one's tastes, you have the choice of heating them up or eating them right out of the package and pop-tarts are completely portable. The perfect food!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Ooops! My bad!

guess I won't be winning any "Mother of the Year" awards. KJ was legit this afternoon...she slept for over 2 hours on the couch and just threw up her dinner. Nothing but fun and games folks.

Daughter #2 is a Pyscho Hose-Bag and Daughter #1 Hoards Hangers

KJ was a cranky, whiny, crying mess when we got home from school today. Holy crap. She was fine in the car when I picked her up from school on the car pool line but the minute the garage door closed she turned into a total nut-job. I asked her to get her backpack out of the backseat which turned into "Oh my God! Why do I have to do everything? I'm tired. I'm hungry. I felt like I was going to vomit ALL day today. My lips are chapped." There are only a handful of steps from the garage/basement to the kitchen so you can just imagine. I made it to the top of the steps first and locked the door behind me. I told her she couldn't come in the house until she calmed her ass down. I'm telling you -- there is a big fat DHR file w/ my name written all over it.

T had to dance tonight during halftime of a high school basketball game. She had on the wrong "game day" shirt (quelle horror!) so she called at 8:45 AM and I had to run the correct shirt to her at the freshment center. I had to go into her room to get the shirt she needed and could not beleive what a mess her room was. She had clothes EVERYWHERE and 6 or 7 half empty bottles of water. I couldn't even tell what was clean or dirty. That's not what aggravated me though. The fact that there were thousands of empty hangers in her closet aggravated me. The other day I was doing laundry and asked both of my lovely daughters if they had any hangers in their closets so I could hang up some shirts. T looked at me, said, "No mommy" and batted her eyelashes at me. She is officially a Hanger Hoarder.

happy anniversary

Today is an anniversary of sorts for Chris & I. 26 years ago today (yes, you read correctly, 26 YEARS AGO!), Chris "asked me out." We were in 10th grade. We had been in a science class together but he was horribly mean to me and even told me one time that "he'd ask me out but I was way too short." I really thought he was an ass. A cute ass but an ass nonetheless. Then, one night we went to a party @ Trout's house (Dave from the football team) and things just clicked. I went to the party w/ my 2 friends named Joanne (Joanne W and Joanne K and my friend Mike) but ended up hanging out w/ Chris all night. Somehow got separated from my friends and had to call my dad to pick us up (no cell phones back then). So, my dad's first impression of his future son-in-law wasn't the greatest -- Chris was sporting an earring at the time and probably smelled like beer.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

I have discovered my inner Geek


yes, I am officially a nerd. I've been watching a lot of the History Channel. I especially like shows about the Civil War and Europe (i.e., I really Cities of the Underworld and I've been watching a lot shows on the Dark Ages, the Crusades, etc.). The good thing about watching nerdy shows is that I have the family room to myself. No one else wants to watch TV w/ me.
Somebody Please!!!
Buy me a freakin' puppy already!










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