Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Simplified

Every year the Hub and I tell each other that we are going to 'take it easy' and 'scale back'. Then, every year we go nuts buying things for our kids that we think will make them scream with joy on Christmas morning.

I will admit that I think spoiling my kids is fun. There is nothing fun however, about having spoiled kids. So this year we committed. The kids were told at the beginning of November that for the Fishler Family Christmas 2008 they would receive 4 gifts - one each in the following categories:

1. Something you want
2. Something you need
3. Something to wear
4. Something to read

The 'something you want' would come from Santa. All others were from me and the Hub. When asked: "What if Santa wants to give us more presents?" We replied: "We will write a letter to Santa telling him to give those gifts to other kids who don't have as much as we do".

We were thrilled as the kids not only embraced this plan, but carefully and methodically began to make decisions about what they wanted for Christmas.

When we saw Santa at the mall, the following conversation ensued:

Santa: What do you want for Christmas?
Z: Jedi Math for Leapster
Santa: That sounds like fun! What else would you like?
Z: Nothing else, all those presents are for other kids."

We are still flying high on the coat tails of our simplified Christmas. All three kids are continually busy playing with their few gifts and none of us feel that anything was missing.

Now that the holiday's are winding down I can honestly say that I feel that the Hub and I gave the kids more this year than any other because our celebration was sweeter, and more full of gratitude and joy.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Many companies offer employee bonuses and fringe benefits to show their thanks and support to those that keep a business afloat. This creates a satisfied employee base and assures staff turnover will be kept to a minimum. As a tax payer, I am glad that the Federal Government does not offer ANY such benefits. As the stay-at-home spouse of such an employee, I am awed when told by others about their 'extras'. The dicotomy between public and private sector is especially noticable during the holiday season. HOWEVER - last night we were able to cash in on a FANTASTIC perk that was eight years in coming.

It was an adventure for the whole family - and if you are on my Christmas (otherwise known as New Year's) Card list you will be getting a recap of the evening soon!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Monday, November 24, 2008

Another whaaaaaat?

I have some great conversations with 'N'. To recall a few:
Dart Board/Dark Lord
The Disgusting Facts of Life
Bird's and Bee's at Target
Sugar Cookies, Elvis and Poop
Elves vs. Doorfs

And here we go again......

N: Are all terrorists Muslim's?
Me: No, many of them are, but not all.
N: So in the next Harry Potter movie why is Professor Snape called the Half Blood Prince?
Me: Because his dad was a regular guy and his mom was a witch. His Mom's last name was Prince so he called himself the 'Half Blood Prince' because he had half of his Mom's blood.
N: And is that why he was half bad and half good? Because his Dad was bad and his Mom was good?
Me: Well we don't know what kind of man his Dad was. Professor Snape was a complicated character because he had made some bad choices but then he tried to make up for them by working with Dumbledore to defeat Voldemort.
N: Well I though he was half bad because he was half Muslim.
Me: Whaaaaat?
N: Half blood Prince, Half blood Muslim.
Me: You mean half blood Muggle?
N: Oh......Yeah.....Nevermind.....Muggles aren't terrorists.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Sometimes - I enjoy a good pity party.

I am too busy.
The laundry somehow multiplies hourly.
Why, exactly, have I volunteered to do so much at the Elementary School?
I am tired of telling my kids not to do something one million times - and then again.
I am tired of cooking.
There are not enough hours in the day to get things done.
My Hub's weird work schedule has him gone more that I would like.
I don't live near my Mom and Sisters.
Our retirement account is down by nearly 50%.
I don't want to clean pee off the back of anymore toilet seats anymore........


Tonight my Hub is out of town and the kids are at a sleep over. So, I went out with girlfriends to see TWILIGHT. And when I got home, my house was too quiet. It felt empty and lonely. And I was reminded of who I do it all for. I am so incredibly grateful that I have them - and that I have the capacity to serve them. I am grateful that The Hub has a great, and very secure job, and that he works hard to provide for us. I am glad that we are relatively unaffected by the current economic crisis, even considering the retirement account. I am glad that I have a house to clean, clothes to wash, and food on the table. (I will try to keep my enthusiasm for the food to a minimum!)

So - I am off to bed with a happy heart. I will try to suffer through my solitude as I spread out in the king size bed - using all four pillows, and I as sleep in tomorrow.

I just wish that someone else would pitch in with wiping the pee off the back of the toilet.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Stats on North Pole Employment

N: You know Mom, Elder Uchtdorf (ook-dorf) should work at the North Pole
Me: What? (wrinkled brow)
N: Like with Santa. He should work for Santa!
Me: What? (more wrinkling)
N: Cause he is like a dorf.
Me: (thinking hard then starting to laugh) You mean like a Dwarf?
N: Yep. He is just like a dorf.
Me: Well, Santa works with elves, not DWARFS. Dwarfs are regular people who don't grow as tall as average humans.
N: Oh. I thought he worked with dorfs. And Elder Uchtdorf actually looks pretty tall. I guess he shouldn't work for Santa after all.

This was not the first time that with raised eyebrows I have evaluated this kid, wondering how (in the name of all that is reasonable) his nutty brain works.

On a related note: QUOTES FROM THE KIDS -

A: I think that I know your favorite time of the day. It's the second that you tuck us all into bed and turn off the lights and escape downstairs.
A: Have you noticed that the more late we are, the madder you get at all of us? Maybe you should work on being on time more often.
Z: I really want to go on a cruise but those are only for rich people.
N: If you get mad at me then I guess that's okay - but you said the 'H' word. You said it two times and I don't think that's okay.
Z: I really want this thing for my birthday but if it is not the right price I will just ask for it for Christmas.
Z: If I was a vulture I would be a very peaceful one. Not the kind that eats dead bloody squirrels on the side of the road. Or maybe I would just be a duck. Or a goose.
Z: I think that I am very handsome. And complicated.
N: What if I was cleaner than soap? Would I have to take a bath then?
M: I need to take a pitocin. (me: so you can have a baby?) No....., so I can sleep. (me: do you mean a mealtoinin?) Oh......yeah.
Z: Do you know what is gross? Salad. Do you know what is grosser? Salad in throw up. With a hot dog on top.
N: Aaahhhh! I'm not wearing any underpants! Oh - wait - I actually am, the wind just blew up my shorts and touched my - never mind.
N: I am not playing attention to the Wii.
A: Are you being scarcastic?
A: What's on my Lagenda?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Motherhood? Oh Brother-hood!

Just over one decade ago, I birthed my first baby. I had great expectations of how fabulous my journey into motherhood was going to be. These expectation where demolished within two weeks of bringing 'A' home from the hospital. The baby had three functions: a dead sleep, nursing ferociously, and wailing in a near animalistic way. Throwing herself so ferociously into a crying fit, she suddenly would stop, and instantly fall asleep in absolute exhaustion. Nothing would pacify, and we had tried everything from a vibrating bouncy chair, to drives in the car, to pushing her around the gravelly parking lot of the nearest grocery store in the middle of the night. If 'A' was awake, she was miserable. And I was afraid. My perfect little baby had a problem.

She was hungry. I discovered that I was not producing enough breast milk to sustain infantile life. In fact, at a two week check up, 'A' had lost a whopping 2.5 pounds.

After I watched her slurp down not one, but two bottles of formula in the pediatricians office, and after I had a semi-major melt down over my maternal short comings, I hatched a plan. I met with the clinic’s lactation specialist, talked to someone at lack La Leche League and I made frequent appointments at a nearby store called the ‘Lactation Station’. I was armed with a myriad of advise and products. I felt confident. More than prepared to tackle the problem. Cheered on by breast feeding counselors, I had been assured that it would be ‘no problem’ to build up a proper milk supply. I consumed herbal tea called ‘mother’s milk’, swallowed gigantic holistic pills twice daily, and took some kind of powder that farmers gave to cows to promote bulk retail on dairy farms.

Then there was the spectacle of ‘the feeding’. I had been instructed to first electrically pump for five minutes, on each side. Next came the nursing, wherein I ‘let’ 'A' suckle, again for five minutes, on each side. This was nearly an impossible feat as she possessed infantile awareness that I was a completely unsuitable food source. We ritualistically fought for ten minutes as she would ferociously latch on and then angrily squirm, grunt, and finally wail. In a grand pre-show of the forth coming Parental Power Wars I attempted to force her compliance as she arched her back and fought me with all of her two week old might.

The next attraction was jimmy-rigging a bottle like contraption that hung from my neck by a cord. Once filled with formula, and whatever little else I was able to produce from the pumping session, the bottle would disperse nourishment from two long skinny straw-like tubes. The plastic tubes were literally taped strategically to my flesh (use your imagination here) so my child could consume the liquid life-force as if it were a product of my own maternal making. The tubes were designed for an agonizingly slow flow to further stimulate the production of breast milk, and neither mother, nor daughter were fooled by the farce. Only the taste of plastic would convince 'A' that hunger would be abated. Once sensing the presence of the tubes, she would latch on and get down to the serious business of eating. Following the feeding I was to pump again. For five minutes, on each side.

I felt like a contender in the breast feeding special Olympics. The starting shot was that guttural cry: feed me! And the games would begin. One hour later I would cross the finish line which was signaled only after I washed then placed the pump pieces and nursing device components on the drying rack. Ding, ding, ding! My event took place eight to nine times a day and I wondered what it would be like to go outside again. Or wear a shirt.

Two weeks later, 'A' became a bottle baby.

All issues surrounding the ill fated feeding fiasco seemed resolved as I packed up the pump. Minus the time and emotional constraints of failure to breast feed, I expected life to magically transform into some version of normal.

It didn’t.

Though re-gaining the two and a half pounds, and consistently then some, that she had originally lost, my tiny daughter suffered several side effects from the two week forced fast. Firstly, eating continued to be a very intense exercise. She would inhale the contents of a bottle with lightening like speed, faster than any baby I had seen, and believe me, I was watching. Several months later, when I started feeding her solids, she would suck the pureed contents off the spoon without leaving a tell tale sign of squashed fruits or vegetables on her face, which any one who has ever fed a baby can tell you is overly bizarre. Secondly, she was very....particular. If snuggled too closely, she would arch her back and screech, even while asleep. She did however, like to be bounced. But not close and cuddly. No, we had to straight arm her. Holding the baby perpendicular to our own bodies and bouncing her up and down in the air. It was exhausting, though possibly good for the forearms. The pediatrician guessed this was a post-traumatic stress reaction from two weeks of nursing on an empty breast.

Close human contact brought out my child's inner fear of starvation.

And as if I didn’t have enough to worry about (guilt from bottle feeding, worry about infantile eating disorders and the stress of producing an emotionally disabled newborn) there was the the insanely prolific acid reflux. Nothing would stay in 'A's stomach for for than five minutes. The one good thing that came from her dislike for being held closely, was that the projectile vomiting was always traveling in a direction opposite from whom ever was holding her. Strategically, she could be aimed towards something washable.

It is no wonder that when I was given a book I could not help but roll my eyes. It was called 'The Joy of Motherhood'.

Though now I can take the messages in the book to heart, at the time all I could think was: Motherhood? Oh Brother-Hood!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Halloween Party

They joined us for spooky-ness..... Saturday night.....
They came for the fun..... For a drink and a bite.....
They brought their best dish.....and brought their best spouse.....
And joined us for fun.....They haunted our house.....
Came dressed in thier best..... Halloween threads.....
Left all their wee one's..... Home in their beds.....
Then came the judging.... For Ashburn elite.....
With prize for yummiest..... Trick-or-treat eats.....
And prize for the costume..... Most awesome design.....
They came to our doorstep..... At six o'clock prime.....
Warmed up their vocal cords..... warned all to beware.....
As we sang karaoke...... When I asked, Do you dare?

Happy Birthday Baby!

My baby has turned five. It was at the end of last month and I am so lucky to have such a fun little guy in my life. Love you 'Z'!

When he was really a baby!

The traditional Birthday Breakfast of waffles with ice cream!

Birthday party number one!

Birthday Party number two!

McCain vs. Palin?

Shame on the back-stabbling McCain staffers who are cowardly trying to cover for their own ineptness by blaming the 2008 GOP loss on Sarah Palin. She was the one person who brought vitalitiy to an otherwise flat-lined campaign. John McCain's silence on the accusations made against her indicate that he either endorses the ungrateful, inaccurate denunciations, or worse, he is promoting them. It is Sarah Palin who should be criticizing McCain and his staff for such a lack-luster, disorganized failure of a campaign. If McCain can not stand up for the person he had chosen to be his number two in command, than how could the American people possibly expect him to stand up for them.

As a conservative who voted for McCain I am sincerely glad that Team Obama won.

And now - as a Virginian, I will be glad that there are no more campaigning knocks on my door or calls on my phone during dinner.

Monday, October 27, 2008

The Basics of A Political Rally

Today The Hub, Z, and I went to a Road To Victory Rally in Leesburg which Sarah Palin attended. After asking a few questions, Z had this insight:

Z: Mom - why do all these people like John McCain?
Me: Because there are a lot of problems in our country and these people think that John McCain can solve some of them.
Z: These guys want John McCain to fix their problems?
Me: Yep

About 30 minutes later on the lengthy walk to the car...........

Z: Maybe John McCain can help me get to the car faster. And maybe he can help me find a bathroom.

And so - if you did not already know - though I have many issues with the Republican party, I support McCain and Palin. To sum up my political feelings in an overly simple way- some citizens truly need government assistance. Most people in the U.S. however, need to take responsibility for themselves and not expect the government to bail them out of situations that have been caused by personal greed and irresponsibility. No one is entitled to be given anything that someone else has earned. The government is a hugely inefficient and corrupt system and I will not ever vote to make it larger or to give it more money. They mess enough things up as it is.

If only our problems could be solved with some directions to the bathroom! (Which I am sure John McCain knows something about, as his age would require him to visit one more frequently.)

(Come on my democratic friends - time for a friendly debate!)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Before Begetting...

Before begetting any babies, I possessed a slightly unimaginative ideology. I expressed this philosophy during high school (sadly), and through out college (pathetically), through actions later attributed to an un-diagnosed case of 'lack of motivation-itis'. Looking back, I still find it difficult to tolerate my own stolid past self. Meandering through life, apathetically allowing things to occur rather than making them happen, I was unassertive, unresisting, and uninvolved in my oh-so-very hands off approach to living.

If I received a B or even a C on a test or final grade? Oh well. My slackers path was easier. Never mind the fact that top scores were well within my range of capability. If I would have cared to put a fraction more than perfunctory effort into studying.

Though caring little for my responsibilities at Dan’s grocery store, I maintained my position at the customer service desk from ages sixteen through twenty-two? Oh well. Never mind. The store was close, convenient. Easier.

My parents had been frustratingly aware of my indifferent, supine philosophy which is why they were dismayed, but not surprised, by my decision to pursue a degree in Human Development and Family Studies from the University of Utah. My Dad asked (with a snort) "What are you going to do after graduation? Develop some humans?” To which I attitutinally replied: "Yep."

I started on the road to doing just that when I met the Hub during my junior year. Our first date was in June. We were engaged by October.

"Marriage is a big responsibility” my mom counseled. “You will have have to go grocery shopping, clean your house, pay bills.....”

“I know,” I interrupted with an imbecilic reply. “It sounds like a lot of fun really!” Dreamily, I smiled to my self in anticipation of the fun-for-all forthcoming financial obligations. Mom looked at me with raised eyebrows that clearly said ‘you are an idiot’. But what did she know? My own bills. Mailed to my own house. Yippee.

The Hub and I married the following March, nine months after our first date.

Upon graduating, right after the first anniversary of our marriage, I began to consider, for the first time, my degree of suitability for a career. As I searched the want ad’s in the Sunday paper it occurred to me, somewhat belatedly, that simply possessing my special degree from an accredited university was not the only prerequisite for landing a great job.

I handled the slightly more bitter disappointment it in the same stoically dispassionate way that I had responded to every other unplanned event in my life, (Oh well...nevermind) which is how I came to be a receptionist for a marketing firm downtown. The job was slow. And dull. And so, from lack of prerequisite, or perceived ability to do anything else, hatched from boredom was my decision to convince the Hub that it was time for us to have a baby.

My short lived ‘career’? Oh well. Never mind. This would be easier.

It turned out that my Dad was prophetic - after graduation I developed some humans.

Over one decade later, I have nothing but fantabulous things to say about my 3 offspring (most of the time anyway) - my three kids are awe inspiring and absolutely awesome. I am phenomenally grateful to have been blessed with them.

But hopefully the Hub has donated the right mix of DNA - I don't want to pass on the dreaded 'lack of motivation-itis'!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

From Cookies To Vegetables

Z: (bites the head off of his ghost) This is a headless ghost! (takes another strategic bite)
N: Now it is a bum-less ghost! And a crotch-less ghost!
Z: Yeah! He will never be able to go to the bathroom!
N: Oh yeah! Let's name him Elvis because Elvis couldn't go to the bathroom either!
Z: Yeah! Elvis has no bum! Who is Elvis?
N: This singer man who took lots of drugs and couldn't poop and he died on the toilet just trying and trying.
Z: Maybe he should have had some poop pills. Like Dad.
N: If I was Elvis I would eat more vegetables. Lots and lots so I could poop.
Z: Me too. I would sit at the table when I was done singing and eat lots lots of broccoli but only if there was lots of butter.
N: Maybe we need to eat more vegetables......

Who knew that the gratuitous bestowal of Halloween cookies upon my offspring would result is such a thought provoking conversation betwixt 2 brothers. The next time I am tempted to quash the potty talk I will remember that perhaps a valuable lesson can be learned if I allow the less-than-tasteful conversation to play out!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

I am sick, sick, sick!

I was recently diagnosed with a sickness called HELIUM HAND (also known as Compulsive Volunteerism). This is a serious condition in which the affected individual can not help but to raise her hand to proffer service whenever it is requested. Really, there is no mental control over the Helium Hand - it simply rises in the air when anyone is in need of anything. In fact, as the Helium Hand rises, it takes control of the brain, making it's clueless possessor forget all of the other things that they have volunteered to do. My symptoms of this sickness are as follows:

-Chairperson of the PTA Reflections Committee
-Script Writer for the Elementary School Morning News Broadcast
-Chairperson of the afterschool Craft Club
-Girl Scout Cookie co-chairperson
-Den Mother of Bear/Wolf troop
-Assistant coach to my daughters soccer team 'The Tornados'
-Assistant coach to my son's soccer team 'The Lynx'

A good friend recently conducted an intervention in my behalf. She has offered to be my sponser and I have committed to a 12 step program. The first step is to admit that I suffer from Helium Hand, and that I need help. My sponser is in recovery herself and told me that being in an elementary school, at a church, or on an athletic field is the equivalent to an alcoholic being in a bar, however, she assures me that HH can be a managable disorder

I am currently being coached at saying "No..." but I can tell it is going to be a long and difficult process.

I am off to bed now - I need my sleep because as Assistant Coach to the soccer team, it is my duty to take charge when THE Coach is out of town. Which is the case tomorow.

Wish me luck - and don't ask me to do anything!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Like Father, Like Son

We are, and always have been a Star Wars obsessed family.  I have adopted these feelings since marriage but The Hub is life time fan.  

Nearly twenty five years ago,  my Mother-in-law donated The Hub's supply of SW action figures and battleships to the Deseret Industries.  To this day - there are some deep seated feelings of resentment over this act of donation.  To try and heal the wounds, when we were first married, I started hunting for SW action figures and gave them to The Hub for birthdays and Christmas.  They were difficult to find at the time because it was before the re-release of the Trilogy and the completion of the Prequels.  Upon recieving them, The Hub opened the figures and set them out lovingly on a shelf in our bedroom.  He now regrets opening the packages and the action figures are in a sealed container hidden in the closet (the kids are allowed to look at them whilst supervised).  We also have an adult sized Vader mask/voice simulator in the closet, and just yesterday 'M' mentioned that he really wanted to get this $200.00 light saber that comes with a special stand for display purposes.  

We once owned the Star Wars Trivial Pursuit Game but The Hub gave it to his brother because he felt like owning it make him too much of a nerd.  Let's be honest - a person who excitedly purchases the game and effectively slaughters all competition with his vast store of knowledge gained from not just watching the shows but reading the literature - has achieved ground breaking SW nerd status - regardless of weather they keep the game or not.
As I said, we are all big fans, but 'N' actually outpaces 'M' in his devotion to the galaxy.  Starting at the age of one, he could always be calmed if I quietly hummed any of the Star Wars theme songs in his ear.  In fact, because 'N' has been on hyper-active hyper-drive since birth, I have spent many hours over the past decade humming, and da-da-dumming this musical score.  For three years I did not hear a word from the stand during sacrament meeting at church on Sundays because through the force I had to pin 'N's arms to his sides, crushing him against my chest, as I lured him to complacency with my well rehearsed, renditions of 'Luke's theme', 'The Rebel Fanfare', or my personal favorite - 'The Imperial March'.  

Over time - other audio-visual passions have 'forced' SW from the limelight of 'N's life - Buzz Lightyear, Batman, Spiderman, Pirates of the Caribbean - but still - the love for the Star Wars Saga remains persistant and strong.   I don't have to hum so much anymore - he does that all by himself - but a frequent topic of discussion in my home is 'Jedi Training School' at Disneyland. We discuss how it went, the techniques the boys learned, the costumes they wore, and when we might be able to attend again. 

The Hub recently added a special download to his iphone.  It is a magical program which plays Star Wars theme music.  This music accompanies the simulated light saber sound effects which are activated when the user swishes his phone around the air with his best Jedi moves.  

Said The Hub cheerfully to 'N' this morning:

"You can try this but if you drop my phone I will have to beat you!"

To which I replied:

"Honey - maybe any activites you plan with the kids that involve the words 'I will have to beat you' are not appropriate."

All three kids had a grand time swishing the phone to beat of 'The Imperial March' and no one dropped the phone.  

No beatings today - May The Force Be With You!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Christmas Card Freebie?

Every year coming up with Christmas Card ideas is a struggle for me because I like to design things on my own but I am a procrastinator by nature.  I ALWAYS save the cards for the last minute, resulting in my mailing them out on about the 20th of December.  This is why I am THRILLED to have discovered an offer for a Free Christmas Card design!  

If you live in Utah and are in need a new family photos check out Jack and Jill Photography! The photography and prices are both amazing!  

Friday, September 26, 2008

My Buddy

Because I unintentionally birthed my first 2 babies just over one year apart, child number three is further in age from his older siblings. While 'A' became a big sis at the age of 1 year, 1 month, and 12 days - 'N' did not become a big brother until the age of 4 years and 4 months. 'Z' will not ever become a big brother despite his periodic questions and comments like: "when are you going to get another baby in your belly?" or "When another baby gets in your belly you will be a big fat Mom - so I won't sit on your lap!" and "When we get another baby do I have share my blankie - because I will hate that baby!". 

My little guy will turn 5 next month - and because 'N' started school 4 years ago - 'Z' has been my solitary buddy and side-kick for nearly his entire life. He still has one more year until Kindergarten but is busy this year with preschool.  
While dropping him off at preschool gives me the selfish pleasure of a few child free hours - I am phasing into a new time of life - which is bittersweet. 
Next year I will wave goodbye to my little buddy as he leaves on the school bus with his 4th grade Big Bro.  Sis will be in middle school then, which another crazy phase all together!

So - this school year I will commit to having fun with my baby. Except I will not publicly call him that as he as told me "don't call me cute things - because it is so much embarrassing!" 

This year is the end of being a mom with little kids.....which brings on mixed emotions - 
do I sigh wistfully, 
shed a few tears, 
or start planning a rockin' PARTY!?

Helping me attach new knobs to the kitchen cabinets.

Does this child:
A: have confusion with the terms 'under' and 'on'
B: misunderstand the proper use of a lawn chair
C: suffer from exhaustion during the final leg of soccer games

Showing off his sense of style - flip flops, summer p.j.'s, 
and a winter coat to combat the mild rain.
This kid goes after a slice of watermelon the way that I dig into a pan of warm brownies!

                                            Hmmmmmm - I have no words for this one.......

                                                   JUST GOTTA LOVE HIM!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Like Mother Like Daughter - OR - Blast From My Past

During the summer of 1989 I was in between 8th and 9th grades when my family decided to take a cross country road trip so that we could participate in the Hill Cumorah Pageant.

Because I was fourteen, I had a wee bit o' attitude. Because it was the eighties, I also had a strange sense of fashion.

My trademark attitude was incredibly-uninterested-in-family-togetherness. My trademark look included a small braid going down one side of my head that was secured at the bottom with plastic pony beads and a bandanna which I rolled up and tied around my ankle. (See picture below of disinterested lounging teen with blue bandanna.)

Too bad I don't have the pic of me (and my bandanna) sitting on the sidewalk in Williamsburg, Virginia giving my photographer/Dad a look that would have landed me in my room if we had been home.

Recently I was showing 'A' my photo albums from The Hill Cumorah Pageant. She noticed my special use of the bandanna and said:

"Oh! That is SO cool! I think you have some bandanna's - can I use them to do that?"

I agreed because let's face it - I did look incredibly cool and only a very cruel mother would deprive her pre-teen daughter of this neat-o fashion oportunity.

She hasn't executed this stellar look yet but this morning she asked me to try something new with her hair. She requested a small braid on one side - secured with plastic pony beads at the bottom (she has never seen photos of me with this 'do' and I have never told her about it)! Lucky for her I have maintained my tiny-braid-pony-bead skill set, and I have many bandanas in wide array of colors as I use them to 'Aunt Jamima" my super short hair at the gym! Lucky for me she seems to have inherited my past sense of fashion, but thus far there is no indication of my past attitude.

(I will post a photo of her hair do after school - and maybe I will let her use my pink bandana as well!)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

General Update and A Parental Check List For Next Weeks Soccer Marathon

Before school started we spent a day in Baltimore. This was a sloppy second for the kids as we had planned on going to Busch Gardens but we had to call the 'game' on account of rain. We spent time at the Harbor, had seafood, went the the National Aquarium, and did a drive by of Charm City Cakes (for those of your familiar with Ace of Cakes).

Shopping for school necessities and supplies is becoming as expensive an event as Christmas! Thank goodness we have a great Outlet Mall in nearby Leesburg! My Dad was definitely right - it costs a lot to keep kids in shoes!

'N' and 'A' looked great for their first day back at school (3rd and 5th grade respectively). I still have one more year to hang out with 'Z' as his 5th b-day isn't until October - he is looking forward to the start of preschool and is the envy of his big bro and sis as he is still allowed to sleep in!

My friend and I went to a slammin' rally for McCain and my girl - Sarah Palin. I LOVE her - and so, by extension - I think that McCain is pretty okay too. I have much to say on the topic of our upcoming election and the suitability of the primary candidates - but that song and dance will have to wait for another post. (better photos coming soon)

Next week during our three hour stint at the soccer field I will bring the following:
1. A beach umbrella for shade
2. A cooler filled with ice, fruit, and many COLD drinks
3. Chairs for all five family members
4. Sunblock
5. A blanket to spread on the ground
6. Lunch
(I would add a battery operated fan but such a purchase would break my new goal of only buying things that are on my 'need' list)
Next week I will not:
1. Let my self nor any of my children get a sunburn
2. Have nothing to sit on but a blanket
3. Have nothing to drink but HOT water by the second hour
4. Mooch a chair off of my neighbors
5. Have three hungry, hot and tired kids

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Flesh Eating Bacteria Strikes Again!

Over the summer my Dad contracted a case of cellulitis. If you do not care to read the oh-so-scholarly wikipedia article I have provided as a link, know that it is an infection of the deep subcutaneous tissue of the skin caused by an invading bacteria. This is a condition that is treated quite seriously as if it goes untreated it can turn into Flesh Eating Bacteria! After several trips to the doctor, and the emergency room, I am pleased to report that my Dad recovered 100%.

Fast forward to last week, which was the first week of school for the kids. 'A' got a nasty looking spider bite behind her ear. Gradually, it began to bother her and after a few days her complaints of discomfort increased and the bite became raised, lumpy, (and pretty gross) so I took her into the doc. Though the bite looked awful, the doc (and the three others who were brought in to confer over her condition) was very concerned over a slightly reddened circle that was spreading around the bite, onto her neck and face. (This reddening was not present when I sent her to school that morning.) And what was the diagnosis? Cellulitis by spider bite!

Now she is on heavy antibiotics and is feeling fine. Poor girl!Let no one say that the Thornton's are not doing their part to wage war against Flesh Eating Bacteria!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

What Did I Do Today?

-Woke up at 6:30 to get the kids ready and out the door by 7:20
-Made 10 PTA posters for the Reflections Program to advertise an upcoming open house that I am in charge of
-Strategically placed said posters around the school
-Could not leave the school due to a fire drill that forced me and Z outside for 20 mins
-Went to the gym
-Made some returns to Target
-Met with my counterpart and planned two months of cub scout den meetings
-Homework with kids
-Piano practicing with kids
-Coached A's soccer team
-Coached N's soccer team
-Went to Back to School Night

(oh yeah, and made breakfast, scoured the kitchen, packed lunches, entertained Z, made more lunches, entertained Z some more, moped the floors, did a few loads of laundry, made dinner, put kids to bed......)

WHEW! Maybe I will run for V.P. of the United States in my spare time!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Conversation With My Kids At The Local Target

N: You know that disgusting thing that people do to make babies?
Me: (glancing around to see if anyone overheard) Ummmmm - yes??????
N: I hate that. Especially the part about the shower.
Me: What part about the shower?
N: You know - the disgusting part.
Me: Um - I think that you might be a little bit confused. Let's talk about this when we get home - okay?
N: I am not confused! I just hate the part about the shower!
A: You are confused! You don't do it in a shower. You do it on a bed!
Me: Okay - let's keep our voices down and discuss this at home okay?
N: Fine but I will still hate the shower part. You know. When you get naked and take a baby shower.

Parental Note: Confusion was cleared up at home - where patrons of Target were no longer within hearing distance.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Happy Birthday Sista!

Yesterday was my little sister's B-Day. Can I simply say that she is one of my very best friends and likely one of the most fantabulous people on the planet? She is a stellar example of how to live life with energy - the girl knows how to have fun. She is a terrific Mom and a wonderful human being. The world is truly a better place because she is in it. I can't express in words how much I love spending time with her. In my dream life we would live next door to each other and have a grown-up girl sleepover at least once a month! Thanks B - for being a great example to me! Love You!

*Do I earn any points for having neglected a b-day phone call with this extra special blog entry?

Sunday, August 17, 2008



I am normally not one to post pictures of myself, but I have to share.

This is me 'BEFORE'. Note the teeth.

A large gap, as shown here is known as a DIASTEMA. This has been my dental cross to bear for the past 34 years. Admittedly, I was not overly burdened by this cosmetic issue until my later years - when I became more vain.

Below you see me 'AFTER'. (In addition to admiring my new smile, please note the fab strand of ginormous pearls that the Hub just gave to lucky me - he hand selected them on his recent trip to China.)

So - good luck to these 2 offspring! I suppose that we will have to budget in some $$$$ for the issues that I have likely created for them and their developing ego's!