Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Three Wishes

Have you ever thought about what three wishes you would ask for if a Genie popped out of your golden lantern? From time to time I have.....and other than the standard wishes for health, peace, and eternally beautiful offspring--my wishes are rather simple.

1. I wish I could, really sing. Although I sing in the choir at our church, I can tell you with 100% certainty that I will never be asked to join praise team or sing a solo. And I love music so very much. That's the irony in this whole situation. I heart music. A lot. But I am cursed with having the vocal ability of the sad people they make fun of on American Idol (remember William Hung?). I am not tone deaf, and I can match the notes of the music--but I am terribly jealous of the girls who can really belt it out, some of whom are my very dear friends! So that's it. My first wish would be for the gift of song.

2. My second wish is that the world would be rid of cancer. I know that kind of falls under the "standard wish" category, but from my personal experience with the beast of's something I want to include in the "simple wish" category. I lost my mom to a malignant brain tumor almost five years ago, and it's a battle that too often ends in defeat. I hate it.

3. My final wish is for this:

I want to be able to run. Not run fast; just long. I want to be the girl wearing an ipod, running around Baylor campus wearing those cute Nike running shorts. I want my pony tail to flop around behind me, mile after mile after mile. I have never been able to run for long distances. And, I have tried ever since high school....without luck.

In fact, the past two weeks I have tried to implement a little running into my lifestyle. I got about as far as my neighbor's mailbox and my lungs started burning, so I quit. Then I tried the run/walk/run/walk approach, and that was moderately successful. Then I got a back injury. Then shin splints. So, once again, my running workout has been tossed in the trash.

But let me brag here for just a moment to say that Kellie-Laine is a fantastic runner, and she proved it yet again at this year's track meet. She participated in 6 events and here's how she did:

4x100 relay: first place

100 meter dash: first place

200 meter dash: first place

400 meter dash: second place

long jump: fifth place

softball throw: third place

Yea, Kellie-Laine! I wish I could run like you.

And what was her reaction to her victories? "I don't like track," she said. "It's too hard."

Now that's something to wish severely dislike something and still be tremendously successful at it. That's what I call talent.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

For the Love of Emerie

The reason I will have baby number four:

Painted toddler toes. sigh.
(Emerie, age 21 months)

Monday, May 19, 2008

Guilty Pleasures

My friend, Juli, asked her readers to reveal their guilty know, the things that you do or enjoy that you wouldn't dare share with anyone. Anyone, that is, except for the blogging public! Nothing is off limits for my blog you see how very much I love you guys?!

So here are my little guilty pleasures....which I really had to think about (perhaps because I've justified the pleasure so much that it no longer feels "guilty!") And feel free to participate on your own blog!


1. Shopping. Listen, folks, this is a weekly occurrence for me. And there's a lot of guilt tied to this pleasure because you actually have a quantifiable number ($$ spent) of how much shopping you did!! However, I justify this activity by being a bargain shopper. I'm great at finding the best deals, the greatest sales, and the once-a-year clearances.

2. Oprah. I know, I know. She went all wacky with her new-found religion, and that really irks me. In fact, she really started irking me when she highlighted "The Secret" on her show. Really? My thoughts have the power to bring me lots of money, a dream house, private nanny, and larger, fuller boobs? Wow! That really is a secret.... Aside from those wacky shows, though, I actually like her. I like her style of journalism. She asks tough questions, and I especially love her "Favorite Things" list.

3. Candy/Candy Stores. As the photo above suggests, I love candy. In particular, I love candy from specialty candy stores. I guess you could say I'm a sucker for candy....sorry, I had to go for that pun. My love of candy probably stems from my childhood obsession with Willy Wonka, but the choco-river was simply too much for my brain to comprehend. Lickable wallpaper! Never ending gobstoppers! The gum that tasted like a full course meal! Oh my. I especially love the bins where you can buy assorted candy by the (expensive) pound. My favorites are the gummy cherries and sour patch kids.
4. Sleep. Although I try to fight it most days, I usually take a nap during Emerie's nap time. Sometimes it's a doozie....a deep, REM, kind of sleep lasting upwards of an hour. Most of the time it's just a 30-45 minute snooze. I love it. And I can only sleep after I've fully picked up the entire house. Some babies need a warm bottle to induce sleep. Me? I just need a clean house....
5. Tacky websites like: (celebrity gossip), (Hollywood fashion mishaps with funny and cruel commentary), , ( this one's not tacky, but I'm always on the lookout for our dream home or A River Runs Through It-type piece of land), and various blogs of people that I don't necessarily know (and some that I do!). Basically, being tied to the computer and asking to be fed intravenously so that I don't have to get up is why I consider this a "guilty" pleasure.
6. 80's nostalgia. New Kids On The Block (going to their reunion concert come hell or high water), Poison (attended their concert in 7th grade), Bon Jovi (went to this concert last month and in 6th grade), Journey (got tickets to this concert coming up in August)....big hair bands. You name 'em, I love 'em. I also love Jem and the Holograms, Pinwheel (the precursor to Nickelodeon), Popples, Rainbow Brite, School House Rock, Kids Incorporated, Sixteen Candles, Captain Caveman, Punky Brewster, the list goes on and on. I hope you enjoyed the trip down memory lane......
7. Nightly foot rubs from my husband.
Which reminds me.....if I'm gonna get a foot rub tonight, I better get off this dern thing!
Share your guilty pleasures please!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A Force to Reckon With: Mommy Bloggers

Many people tell me that I write, I mean well. It is a compliment that I receive graciously because I was sort of pre-wired for writing greatness. My dad was the editor of our hometown newspaper for many years, and my mom was a teacher. I was an English/Communications major at A&M, and in high school I was a state finalist in LD Debate and Informative Speaking. I'm a firm believer that if one can speak can write well, and vice versa. I also believe that all bloggers are, by virtue of the hobby, gifted at writing. Think about it....why would a terrible writer want to start blogging? In the same vein, why would I, being at a first grade math level, start an accounting business or become a math tutor? Blogging and good writing go hand in hand, and most of the blogs I read are fantastic.

However, there is a new group of bloggers which the media has termed "Mommy Bloggers." They are a powerful group of women. They are funny, witty, painfully honest, and most of all, they are FAMOUS. Now you may wonder aren't we all mommy bloggers? And the general answer is yes, but the real answer is that the pioneers of mommy blogging are nowhere in our league. They earn money from their blogs. Yes, you heard me correctly. Advertisers pay them for space on their blogs. (Big advertisers like Home Depot, BMW, Revlon, etc.) They also receive awards, media interviews, host speaking engagements, and have a cult-like following.

One blog that I read is written by a gal named Heather Armstrong, ( She, in the blogosphere, wins the popularity contest having just won the "oscar" of awards at the recent 2008 Bloggie Awards (she won Best American Blog, Lifetime Achievement, and Blog of the Year). Heather has been featured on The Today Show, NY Times, MSNBC, and other high-ranking media. Her writing is painfully funny and sometimes too honest for me, but I love her wit, sarcasm and her periodic letters to her four year old daughter, Leta. Although Heather doesn't openly admit what her yearly earnings are from her blog, media speculates she averages about $40,ooo a year from advertisers. Her husband, Jon, actually quit his job to become her business manager. Heather is a full-time blogger.

It is estimated that Heather's blog averages 40 million hits a month....did you read that correctly? 40 miiiilllliiioooon hits. (And to think I get all excited when my blog shows 5 or more comments! Loser.) Heather's blog also has huge consumer influence. For example, she featured a hand-made purse by a local struggling artist, and in less than a week the now-not-so-struggling artist completely sold her entire inventory. That's pretty cool.

I thought you might be interested to know some other mommy bloggers who receive this kind of popularity, but let me warn you know in the blogging blog will lead to another, will lead to another, will lead to another, will lead to another. I spent close to 3 hours last night reading blog after blog of funny mommy humor. So pace yourself, and stop every now and then to do some sit ups or something.

Top Mommy Blogs:

So in all this hype about us mommy bloggers....I wanted to ask: why do you blog? For me, it's a creative outlet. And a chance, or rather an attempt, at humor. I blog because I like the diarist approach to motherhood. I blog because I can't keep up with a scrapbook. I blog because I'm an extrovert and I love getting comments. Finally, I blog because I like the connection with other gals.
So why do you do it?

Monday, May 12, 2008

Family Vacation Follow Up

I thought a follow up post might be due for those of you who gave me advice on our family vacation. We decided to stay in the U.S. as traveling internationally with three kids made me extremely nervous. (Nikki: we were so close to booking at Beaches Turks & Caicos, too!)

So, we talked my sister and her family into going with us and rented a beach cottage in Watercolor, Florida. Take a peek at our house here. You may find it interesting to know that Watercolor is minutes away from Seaside beach, where the Truman Show (Jim Carey) was filmed. Watercolor has a "beach cottage-y" feel and, according to my sister's sister-in-law, is one of those places I will be tempted to sell my children in order to purchase a home in Watercolor.

So our family will be flying from Waco to avoid the 14 hour car ride, but the 6am flight is not sounding particularly fun either. And did I mention that I hate flying? I do. Add to that fear the fact that I will, occasionally, get motion sick and have to take Dramamine prophylacticly. Dramamine makes me pass out, which is a rather unacceptable way to fly with three needy children.

So thank you, faithful readers, for extending your suggestions and well wishes. We will one day venture to the lovely beaches of Mexico, Turks & Caicos or the Cayman Islands.....but not until all of my girls are Red Cross certified.

And now for a random riddle that will shed some light on a question you've always wanted answered about yourself, "Do I Think Like a Psychopath?" Read the following riddle and try to come up with an answer:

The following is not a trick question. It is as it reads.
A woman, while at the funeral of her own mother, met a guy whom she did not know. She thought this guy was amazing. She believed him to be her dream guy so much, that she fell in love with him right there, but never asked for his number and could not find him. A few days later she killed her sister.

So the obvious question is: what was her motive for killing her sister?

Think about your answer carefully and then go here for the answer. I totally did not get it right, but ironically, two women in my playgroup hit the nail on the head. Scary, right? (And, no, I'll never tell which mommas answered it correctly!!!!)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Zig, Then Zag

I'm thinking of re-naming my blog to: Adventures of a Bi-Polar Supermom. What do you think? (And please don't send me email or post comments about my insensitivity to those with actual bi-polar disorder. I'm highly sensitive, in fact, that I think I might very well be bi-polar.)

So after my recent post about the "peacefulness in my spirit about being a mom," I have now zagged into a mommy funk. Isn't that the way it always goes, especially for us women? Just when we think we're coasting along in one particular mood....we zig, then zag in a total opposite direction. No wonder men can't figure us out! So back to this funk.....keeping it real for ya, folks. There are days I wake up and already have a bad attitude about catering to the demands of others. Since these demands start before I'm even out of bed, it's hard to wake up with abundant patience and radiant positivity. Sometimes I just don't want to. Period.

Today was one of those days, and I knew it the night before. I took a little extra time this morning to pray for a smooth day, but gosh darnit, I kept falling asleep mid prayer. I am a total loser. Part of it was that I had nothing pressing to do, which meant most of my day would be spent making things up to do (i.e. entertaining the girls) which requires 1. creativity and 2. energy. Of which I possess neither. Another part was that I was coming off of a low-back injury from my efforts to feed the homeless. (Okay, so that was a total lie. I wish I had been feeding the homeless or running a marathon or simply picking up a heavy child. Nope. I injured my back spray tanning. Can you say l-o-s-e-r?) The final nail in the coffin of mommy funky-ness was that yesterday I opened up "Beeler Daycare" at my home to host all of my Bible study friends' kiddos. Thirteen kids were in my home for three hours, and I couldn't spend another day cooped up at home. I was actually going to have to go somewhere.

After picking up Landrie at noon from school, Emerie decided she wouldn't eat and didn't want to nap. Landrie decided that she would talk non-stop while stopping in between sentences to ask, "Did you hear that, Mom?" or "Are you listening?" with the attitude Veruka Salt. Then, the furniture company called to say that my bedroom furniture that was promised for delivery in two weeks was on a slow boat from China and would actually be more like 6-8 weeks. This alarmed me because I didn't realize that my high-end, brand name, over-priced furniture was being made in China....but there was no turning that boat around now. Husband came home for a quick bite, and left telling me he shouldn't be late tonight (light at the end of the tunnel). Then husband calls back an hour later saying he would, after all, be late (light quickly fading in tunnel). Kellie-Laine went home with a friend, and I stood alone in my aloneness.

The girls and I ran one quick errand to drop off a gift to my friend, who is a pediatric PA. It took everything in me to overcome the urge to let my kids play in the waiting room play area. I probably would have done it, but the receptionists already knew I didn't have an appointment. I also didn't like the way they stared at me when I walked in and announced "Oh, we're just here to visit!" I settled for letting the girls ride the elevator up and then taking the stairs down. It killed about 3 minutes. We then headed to the park, and it was actually kind of nice. To end the painstaking day, I tried a new recipe for shrimp cervache tostadas....and I realized mid-bite that I don't like cold shrimp. It was gross.

Soooooo.....I realize you readers might be saying things like, "Get over yourself" or "Take an anti-depressant and get on with it" or you may even be thumbing through your phone book for the number to CPS. However, let me assure you.....I know there are women out there who are desperate for just one of these moments from my day. Angie Smith, who just lost her baby upon delivery, would give her eye teeth for one day like this with her sweet Audrey Caroline. Who am I to complain? Kelly, from Kelly's Korner, who is dealing with infertility and would desire nothing more than to struggle through a day of motherhood if it meant she would bear her own child. Who am I to complain?

Motherhood (as well as life in general) is really about perspective....and the occasional greener grass. I am well aware that these are fleeting moments, and all too soon I'll turn around and long for my children to be underfoot, talking incessantly, and taking naps in cribs. I know that while I've zigged to this particular place, soon I'll zag to happy-mommy land again and all will be right with the world. But in an effort to keep things real for you readers, I wanted to share with you that today was not that great of a day in SuperMom world. I need you to know, and empathize with me, that being a mom is not all sunshine and roses. Sometimes mommyhood is an endless snotty nose on a toddler who took her diaper off in the crib (again) and tee-teed....or a middle child who is passionately kissing a balloon in questionable dress-up clothes. Mommyhood is a pre-teen daughter who thinks her friend's mom is a million times cooler than you are because friend's-mom buys her stuff at Target. Mommyhood is having all of your children wrinkle their noses and make choking sounds when you set dinner down on the table....mommyhood is kids fighting over the princess Aurora doll that neither knew existed until one child found is laundry that is never done, toys that are never completely picked up, and tummies that are never too full for fruit snacks or Oreos.

And so I'll go to sleep tonight....thankful for these character-building opportunities....prepared to wake up and do the same song and dance tomorrow. I better start praying now......