Monday, March 26, 2012

Goodbye To You

I remember as a kiddo, looking through catalogs that would arrive in the mail that sold novelty t-shirts. One had "the more I know men, the more I love my dog." You know, I always thought that was a strange thing to say... until I grew up... learned about men... and became a pet owner. I totally "get" it now.

Dogs are our constant companions. They are the only source of unconditional love you'll ever receive. In my home, we have three constant companions -- Lola, my Boston; Moose, Andy's baby Huey and Sadie, Josh's rescue. Tomorrow, I have the grim task of taking Josh's dog to be put down.

I've noticed over the last few weeks that she's been needing to be let outside more and more and that it was taking her longer and longer to evacuate her bladder... which is really sad when it was raining. She was having to be let out 2-3 times a night so I was constantly up all the time for her. It wasn't as bad as having a newborn because it was just up, pee, close the door, back to sleep.... but it was still inconvenient!

Regardless, I took her to the vet where it was discovered that she has many bladder stones. So many, in fact, that she would require surgery. $1200 surgery. And, after spending that chunk of change, they can't guarantee or even give good odds that this condition will not reoccur. We figure she was probably a year old when we got her so that puts her at about 7-8 years old. That seems to be par for the course for dogs in my life. At first discussion, Andy said he would do it. However, with the odds not in her favor, I just can't -- in good conscious -- pay that for an 8 year old dog. Which then, in turn, makes me struggle with how can you put a price tag on their love? I liken this feeling to the June Cleaver version of the Grim Reaper. I look all pretty and smiley but I'm an agent of death. I feel like I'm the one marching down the Green Mile with her and inside, it's killing me. I'm a lover, not a killer.

I think that we as humans learn a great deal when we are also caretakers for our four-legged family members. Josh has learned responsibility, love, affection, devotion, loyalty all through the teachings of a little 22 pound dog we rescued 7 or so years ago from the Forney Road Shelter.

I still remember that day I brought her home. We'd attended the Fort Worth Home and Garden show at the Convention Center. There were all sorts of rescue groups present with adoptable pets. There was one little dog that was the cutest! So, that next day, I decided that I was going to get her. I hopped in the car and headed to the shelter where she was but when I got there I realized just how barky she was... turned around and saw this brown dog curled up in the little plastic bin they'd given her for a bed... her pillow was a towel. I took a knee by the cage and talked to her through the fence. She slowly raised her head as if she realized that someone was actually there to see her. She looked like she'd given up until she realized I was there. It was an instant bond.

I'll be honest, I feel like she knows that she was saved by us... just as she helped us be saved from our grief of losing two other dogs so very close together.

So, when I saw her, I was sold. She was adorable, peaceful and very sweet. I picked Josh up from school and showed him his new dog. We chose to name her Sadie.

Call me crazy, but I like most animals more than people. Their only motivators are food and affection. What a life! And boy does this dog love affection. She shows her happiness, in fact, daily -- via her tail. Having had Boston Terriers for a while now, I'm not used to having a dog with a tail. Sadie has a tail. You will always know that she's glad to see you... because it thumps, thumps, thumps wherever she is. She is such a happy dog. She resembles a fox.... reddish coat, white feet, white tip on her tail...

Although Lola is "my" dog, Sadie follows me everywhere -- even the bathroom and for nothing more than to set her face on my knee to be pet. Lola won't leave her warm spot for affection, but Sadie would -- and does. Sadie, in fact, would be the first to give up a juicy bone to just receive some affection. She is a lover, for sure. She won't offer up kisses to me, but she will nuzzle. She craves love and appreciates anything and everything you will dish out to her.

Her bed of choice? Two big blankets atop a recliner.

She's a stealthy food stealin' ninja dog.

She can clear the kitchen island -- yes, the dog has springs in her butt.

Benji calls her "Izzy."

He pulls her tail and she doesn't bite, snap, growl or even snarl. She's gentle.

She has the biggest, heart-melting, trusting auburn eyes... they're just beautiful... and I'm going to betray them tomorrow.

No matter how hard it is... I know I'm doing the right thing but that doesn't make it easy.

Please lift up an extra prayer for my boys tonight and tomorrow as they process their grief from losing their little lady.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Strolls down memory lane...

I was playing some tunes tonight on YouTube while working on a few things on the computer and chatting with some of my besties on Facebook...

I posted song after song and my friend, Shannon, kept "liking" each post. So, finally I asked her if she was actually listening to them or just "liking" them. She said, "Yes!" She was listening to Eddie Money "Baby Hold Onto Me." He puts on a great show. I love his voice.

So, then she posted a song on my wall. "Come On Eileen" by Dexy's Midnight Runners. I still have to look up the lyrics to that song. You just can't understand that guy. You'll be singing along and then you're like, "What the heck did he just say?"

She reminded me how we used to push the sectional against the wall at my mom's house to open up a dance floor for us to perform. We would put on 33's (if you don't know what that is, you just need to quit reading my blog now because we likely will have nothing in common, plus, you're making me feel old so piss off!) and wear socks and slide around on the linoleum floors. We were hot stuff. Let me tell ya!

That got me thinking what ELSE we used to dance to.


This is so freakin' bad. It's superbad. It's embarrassing to watch -- but I did. I guess it was morbidly fascinating how excruciatingly pathetic it is now. Seriously, I just cringe.

I think if you get kicked off So You Think You Can Dance, they should duct tape you to a chair and make you watch seasons of this over and over... leave you with a parting gift of some Nair, a gift certificate for a perm and some silky spandex pants. Woo hoo!

I recall one specific time while at my maternal grandmothers in Mesquite, my sister and I were watching Solid Gold. I remember, too, with acute clarity the dancer whom my sister most admired. She was this beautiful waify black woman with hair like Crystal Gayle. She was built like a ballerina. My sister wanted to be her. That evening she wore this ridiculously small gold stretchy leotard. I was telling my Meme -- that's what we called her you see, "Meme"-- that my sister wanted to be a Solid Gold dancer -- JUST LIKE HER! (picture me here pointing to the television)

"A Solid Gold Dancer?" she exclaimed.

Without a second thought she spewed forth unsolicited advice (which she was always known to do.) She proceeded to tell us that in order to be a Solid Gold dancer, one must shave your entire genital area to wear their costumes.

Yes, I was ten year old and my grandmother was talking to my sister and I about shaving our crotches.

It was distinctly the most bizarre conversation now that I think I ever had with her... or either of my grandmothers for that matter. I mean, they're GRANDMOTHERS for goodness' sake. They're supposed to talk about baking cookies... being nice to puppies... bacon grease... making good grades... how to cook... perhaps about how they walked four miles to school up hill in the snow both ways -- not shaving pubic hair!

All I can think of now is that I had to have only been about nine or maybe ten years old -- tops! I'm not even sure that a ten year old girl -- even being the conducive genius that I was -- could contemplate the true understanding of what that entire conversation actually entailed. I mean, I know I hadn't even entered PRE-puberty, let alone been under the full understanding of what grooming rigors that would entail later in life.

I think just the shock of it all then and there shot down my dreams of being a Solid Gold dancer. And, to this day, you can thank my grandmother for the fact that I did not become one. For you see, at ten years old, I was scarred for life.

Solid Gold. Grandmothers. Crotch shaving. What an odd trail of thought I leave you with tonight.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The List

I posted pictures this morning to my Facebook account of these amazingly beautiful, serene bungalows perched atop stilts over clear, turquoise ocean waters. Most were in Bora Bora (Yes, I had to look it up on the map to even see where it was).

It's an amazing sight. Take a little look-see:
It's an amazing experience, I am sure.

It's also amazingly expensive (this I know). These coastal beauties start out at $1,700 per night without airfare, food, transfers, etc. But, oh, aren't they dreamy?

I will add it to the list, regardless. It may not be those bungalows that I stay at but... it'll happen. You see, it's now, on "the list".

I have one -- a bucket list, that is. Albeit a small one. I have one. Yes, I do.

I think it's important to keep sight of your dreams and goals... and even some hopes and crazy ideas along the way. Otherwise, what's the purpose in living life? I refuse to stagnate and just "do" because it has "to be done." Status quo has never been a easy pill for me to swallow. There is absolutely no enjoyment in that. Life is to be lived and savored... appreciated and gifted.

Whatever needs to get done, obviously, will get done because life goes on, but why not enjoy the journey along the way by doing whatever necessary to make it memorable.

But then... you know, I have to analyze things. I'm cooky like that sometimes.

While that may be a "dream vacation," it's not my ideal vacation.

Anyone that knows me knows that my "motherland" isn't the lapping waves of some remote, tropical getaway, but the crisp air in the mountains. I prefer my hiking boots to a bikini and a campfire to candlelight dinners over white linen table cloths.

If I can't have that, then I'd definitely love to be in a cabin... in the mountains (of course).

Because, you know, that never leaves the list... been there, done that, want to keep doing it again.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Times change
Moods change
Weights change
Ages change
Clothes change
People change
Chump change

The last one doesn't really fit, but it was funny, so I included it. Yet, most of these are definite in this house.

Times change
We've just "sprung forward." Daylight Savings Time has come and gone and now we have more daylight in the time when we're apparently supposed to be taking more advantage of it. It has, however, caused somewhat of an odd phenomena at this house in that my children seemingly want to sleep the entire morning away! My early riser, Drew, has been getting up at 9 and 10. Even as late as 10:30 a.m. and that was only because the dogs woke him. Benji has been sleeping later, too. And, yes, while I understand I should take advantage of this -- later naps mean later nights. That, my friends, is no bueno. This mama LIKES her "me" time. Period. If the musical aquarium is going off in a little person's room, I don't sleep. I don't sleep until he's asleep.

Moods change.
Well, this is fairly self-explanatory. I mean, I AM a woman after all.

Weights change
Yes, why yes they do. I'm very happy about that, too. I give it six months and I'll be close to where I want to be. Building muscle takes time so, since I'm about 10 pounds from my "goal" weight (not my "dream" weight, but my "goal") it's time to start the focus back on strength and agility training and get back into my running routine. I'm ready... just have to go slow so my knees will stay up with me.

Ages change
Little man turns the big T-W-O this month on the 26th. And, boy howdy is he ever in those "terrible two's." Fun fun fun. Drew turns EIGHT this year and Josh turns into a teenager! YIKES! Speaking of YIKES -- I turn the big 4-0 this year, but it's a long ways away so we don't even have to talk about that yet.

Clothes change
And it's such a blessing that they do, too. I couldn't imagine the stank otherwise! Apparently some change clothes more than others. That leaves a lot of laundry, don't you think? Hmmm... Perhaps these people will now soon realize how wonderful it WAS to have someone willing to do your laundry now that they won't anymore. Yes, today was Drew's initiation into the world of spin cycles, laundry softener and sorting colors. Little man kept sending down clothes that were clean in his dirty laundry basket. He wasn't putting up his clothes, either. So, after his two warnings -- third strike. He's out. I'm done. There is a lovely load of darks rollin' in the upright at the present time. Music. Sweet music. Two down, one to go. (Josh has done his own laundry for the most part since age 9 -- he turns 13 in May.)

Self sufficiency is a big thing. I hope other moms out there are walkin' the walk! Men aren't born --they're raised. Responsible and self-sufficient ones are a rare commodity.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Target Practice

Moms, this is a public service announcement to you. Teach your young men how to aim for something ... ANYTHING... in the toilet.

Boys love guns.

Fortunately, they're equipped with one -- of sorts -- and, as such, without proper training, can leave their ... um.. "ammo" all over the toilet, the toilet seat (if you're lucky enough to have one that finds it's apparently beneath him to actually use the effort to lift the seat...(ahem...JOSH) ... the wall, the floor... by now I'm sure you're catching my flow. (pun intended)

It's an unpleasant side-effect it seems of being born genetically handicapped (male) so, we moms must do our very best to teach them that not only is cleanliness next to Godliness but the way to make Mommy very happy, is to make sure that the stench of urine isn't flooding the bathroom should she decide to venture in.

My bathroom, by the way, off limits to tri-peds. Period. Well, except the big one but I don't really have a choice.

I do believe it is our job for the simple fact that we are generally the cleaner of the thrones (or at least supervisor of the cleaner of the thrones) in our homes. As such, it is our job to educate those three legged people how to keep the thrones shiny. Worthy of a queen's bottom.

And, if not that, just clean enough that it doesn't disgust your mom, her friends or your grandmother!

Now, while I don't generally clean the toilets in my home, I still have to maintain their sanitary state until such time as my throne cleaner arrives. You may think it pompous of me to suggest those to train tri-peds to be more target-oriented when I, myself, am not even cleaning the thrones in my abode. The answer is simple. I don't clean up everyone's yuck for the simple fact that


It's pretty much that easy.

So, moms. Please. For the love of all things clean and sanitary, teach those kids to make it in the water! If not for YOUR toilet, then for those moms who will be hosting your children when they spend the night. And for those moms whom will be ultimately surveying the restrooms after your children have departed.

Even if your children aren't schooled in the etiquette of being a gracious guest... leaving a clean and tidy bathroom in their departure is almost equally as wonderful and will certainly reflect upon you personally.

Besides, it's one thing cleaning up your own sleepy kids' pee, it's quite another cleaning up someone else's.

I have been know, on occasion, to walk into the downstairs guest bathroom in my home immediately after one of the two older tri-ped offspring have exited to examine the throne. I have raised the seat. I have examined the bowl. I have examined the seat. Yes, I demand a pee-free zone. I am the Pee Nazi.

On occasion, I have noticed "drops" of something on the seat.

(I wasn't there so I can only speculate, of course. Investigators must be thorough, you see. If you did not witness said offense, you need to either have a mountain of evidence or you need to coerce a confession.)


"Yes, ma'am?"

"Were you the last one to use the restroom?"

See? This is how you build a mountain of evidence. He clearly knows that he was the last one to utilize the loo. I do, too, as I watched him exit. However, I have to build my case against him.


"Please come here." I point to said offending drops. "Would you like to sit on this?"

"What is it?"

"Why don't you tell me?"

Blank stares and silence.

This is when you move in for the kill or at least the shock factor.

"Put your hand on the seat... on that drop."

Looks of disgust and the admission in his head that his mother has finally lost all her marbles.


"You were in here less than a minute. I neither heard a lid nor a seat clink that it was raised or lowered. I was the last one in here before you and I assure you that there were no drops on it. You came in here. You peed. You peed on the seat. You didn't wipe it off. Would you like me to pee on your toilet seat?"

"Gross, no."

"Then quit peeing on mine."

He grabs some toilet tissue and wipes it off, throws it in the toilet and flushes while I supervise.

"Grab the seat with your hand."


"Because I said so."

"No, there was just pee on it."

"So you still wouldn't want to sit on it even though you wiped the pee off?"


"Good. Me either."

I hand him what is necessary for cleaning the toilet and I walk out of the restroom.

I'm telling you, ladies, do this a couple of times... your thrones will be pee free.

Target practice!

Do it! You deserve it. And, well, if YOU don't -- I certainly do! ;)

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Rainy day women...

Hmmm... sounds, perhaps like a Bob Dylan song?

I remember as a kid in junior high, my sister would play this song and think she was sooooo cool. I didn't even know what it meant to "be stoned" but if SHE was singing it -- it had to be cool. I idolized my sister and I learned that song at a young age. Proof that just because children memorize things, doesn't necessarily mean they know what the heck they're talking about.

Second point in case. I'm sure everyone's seen this little gem of a movie, right?

Do you know there's a dialogue between the brothers when one calls the other "penis breath?" Gasp?! Can you believe it? Well, go watch it again! I dare ya!

Want me to prove it? Here ya go schweeties:

Told ya so!

Anyway, yeah, that phrase was repeated in my house a couple of times. Until, of course, good ole Mom caught wind of it. She nipped that one in the bud pretty fast. (Can't say I blame her. The worst things my kids say -for now- is "dork" or "butt head".) Typically I just tell them they're getting on my nerves and to go to their room when the petty name calling ensues. I have no time for that. And, besides, it's stupid.

More often than not, I just tell them they sound like whiney girls. That shuts 'em right up. Hey, I'm the only "whiney girl" they have experience with on a daily basis so they must be fairly certain that I know what I'm talking about.

Anyway, I thought it'd be fun to do a snapshot of each in this month since, you know, I haven't in a while and..well, since it's raining -- there's nothing else to do.

Josh - age 12 - grade 6.
  • He has his first girlfriend this year. She's adorable. Her name is Kelsey. She's a 7th grader. They're smitten. It's cute. Puppy love just is so sweet --- and silly. They sent 500 gazillion text messages when they're clearly able to just pick up the phone and talk to one another. I read some of their early text message (because I'm a mom, and a snoop, and it's my phone and I can!) and there was probably a good hour long dialogue about picking out pet names for each other. She wanted pet names because all her friends had them. He was like, "Oh, ok." (that's my charmer!) She wanted him to pick out said pet names. I can hear the echo now... "Bueller??? Bueller?" Ultimately, she suggested "babe" and "baby" but then sent a text about how now they're in bigger trouble because how do we decide who is "babe" and who is "baby." Tell me that's not cute. Gag.
  • He's A/B honor roll still.
  • He went from a size 7 to a 10 1/2 in like NO TIME! His shoes cost more than mine.
  • He just got a Herbpst appliance on and said it feels like he has a "robot in his mouth." He missed a Scout campout because of it. He has to wear it a year.
  • Speaking of Scouts, yes, he is still in it and loves it. The kid loves to camp.
  • He's taller than me. I hate that. I really do.
  • He's stronger than me. I got down on the floor with them and wrestled in the living room the other day and yeah... he pinned me. He's 12. That sucks. I need to kick his ass.
  • He collects knives. No idea why. At least they're small.
  • Since they wear uniforms at school, style is defined through shoes and socks. He loves Nike Elite socks and some Air Jordan look-alike shoes. All shoes he picks out are quite ghetto looking to me. I like plain-Jane tennis shoes. I'm a mom. I'm not supposed to like what he wears, right?
  • He loves classic rock (I did something right there!), Nelly and Eminem. There are a few others but those are the main ones.
  • He's going to the Nickelback concert with me for his 13th birthday. He has no idea. I love it!
  • He loves going to church. Wants to do some mission work.
  • He lives to spend time with his friends.
  • He's a slob. I hear that's normal. I think boys are gross. His room... bleh! I'm a clean freak. Can't compare us, apparently.
Drew - age 7 - Grade 1
  • This child LIVES to play MineCraft. In fact, he's playing it RIGHT NOW with his best friend from school, Josh. We're having a sleepover, you see. They're in MY room on MY bed building a world... that I'll never understand. I've been told it's an engineer thing so the fact that I can't wrap my brain around it makes perfect since... apparently.
  • He likes to FaceTime my mom and apparently has no conversational skills as he (I'm told from Josh) just hangs up on her when he is finished. We need to work on that.
  • He likes what Josh likes as far as music, I think, because he's up there in his room when Josh's is on (sound familiar? Me and my sister? Yeah... he'll have an old school tastebud for sure).
  • The child lives for homemade waffles or French toast in the morning. I hope he eventually learns the beautify of covering it with warmed berries rather than maple syrup but, it'll happen eventually, perhaps, maybe, when the moon is fully aligned with all the planets and it's the 3rd Tuesday in July.
  • The child can't remember to turn off a light or radio to save his life but he can remember if you told him two years ago that you'd give him 50 cents tomorrow.
  • He doesn't believe the tooth fairy is really a "fairy." He believes it is one of God's angels.
  • He reads the Bible. A lot. He loves to have The Boxcar Children read to him although he could EASILY read the entire series by himself, he loves that time together.
  • Hates to take baths... well - showers, really. This is the year that he began taking showers instead of baths. Why? Benji's toys were always in the tub. REAL torture is when you ask him to take a bath the day after he's already taken one! You will witness serious crocodile tears and a full-blown huffy fit. He just doesn't understand why!? For jollies, sometimes I really want to make him return to the shower to scrub some invisible spot that he apparently missed. You get your kicks around here however you can.
  • He watched an episode of Ghost Hunters with Josh and now is afraid to be anywhere in this house by himself.
  • His preferred television channel is something like Sons of Guns, River Monsters and Finding Bigfoot. Otherwise, he is wanting to watch something about "Gumball" on Cartoon network.
  • He's straight A's of course.
Benji - 23 months
  • Oh Benji...where do we start with this little booger? He is in a size 2T for sure now.
  • Still has blonde curls and blue eyes. I love the curls. I'm a sucker for the curls. However, in the morning to WET DOWN the curls, he runs the other way when he sees my hands in the water.
  • He has a hard head. If he's mad, he uses it. He is a head-butter. He thinks it's funny.
  • No interest in potty training. In fact, if he knows it's time for a diaper change, he says "doo doo" and then runs the opposite way. Then, once you catch him, you almost have to throw him over your shoulder like a sack of dog food because it's impossible to pick him up as he goes full-blown "noodle body" and it's impossible to pick him up. Generally, he kicks the entire time. You have to lock him down in a death hold to wipe his butt. It's annoying. It makes my eye twitch.
  • He went from being entranced by Cars to Toy Story and now it's Word World.
  • He goes to Preschool two days a week and I'm thinking about bumping it up to three. He's a handful.
  • In the last two weeks, he has discovered how to empty any type of sturdy container and flip it over to use for standing on. Then he carries said container all over the kitchen in order to rid your counters and drawers of anything unnecessary. That was a fun day.
  • His vocabulary is his own. He obviously has down the "mama," "dada," "dosh" for Josh, "dew" for Drew, "la la" for Lola, "moof" for Moose, "is he" for Sadie. However, he has some words that are just Ben-jish. For instance, "bossy" is "coffee" but it's also "pretzel" and "Pizza." "Yah tick" is chocolate. "Moo me" is "Smoothie" and he loves those. He has milk down pretty good and if you can't understand him, he knows sign language for that so it's fairly clear. He knows sign language for "more" as well and says that and signs at the same time. He knows sign language for "all done" too but isn't always the best at doing that. I am thankful that he has started using the sign rather than clearing his tray by tossing it... all over the floor... all over me... across the table. I'm sure you get the idea.
  • He still tries to eat things sideways which I find just odd. For instance, if you were to have a sandwich before you. You would hold it parallel to the floor (somewhat) and take a bite. Benji eats to the tune of a different drummer -- he tries to chew through the center of the bread if you're holding it perpendicular to the floor. It's quite interesting to watch this phenomena take place.
  • If you break out the camera, he instantly goes into "eeeeeeeee" for "cheese" which is the worst thing to teach a child. I'd rather have no smiles than planted ones.
  • He won't eat eggs. He won't eat oatmeal. He won't eat sausage. He won't eat veggies (other than cucumbers). He won't eat chicken. He won't eat mac n cheese. He won't eat ham. He won't eat a cheeseburger. I'm wondering how he is able to grow at all. I'm sick of wasting food.
  • He loves apples! Those are called "bapple"
  • He loves to play with Duplo Legos, tinker toys and wooden blocks.
  • He's ornery.
  • You can't be on the computer if he is awake. He takes the wireless mouse, spins around and promptly throws it on the floor.
  • His favorite thing to do when he wakes up is sit in his Lightning McQueen chair and watch an episode of Word World, have his milk and a small bowl of dried cereal.
  • He lives to be outside. I'm glad it's starting to warm up a bit so that he can be outside more.
  • If we ever lost his "ni ni" (blankie taht his Mimi made him) I truly believe we would never sleep again.
  • He sleeps in his own toddler bed now. He won't get out of it, either, in the morning or at naptime until you enter his room. Which is quite surprising since the only way you would ever know that Drew is up was from the sound of little feet overhead.
  • It is impossible to go out to eat with him. Don't even try.
  • He has started helping clean up messes. We have been working on drinking from a cup for a while now. He takes a sip and loves to watch it pour all over the floor. But, he promptly knows where to go get a clean towel. Got to love all my clean dish towels on the floor for a small spill, huh?
  • Diaper: During the day: Size 4 Pampers Cruisers. At night: Size 5. I'm a diaper snob. Huggies are made for kids with chubby legs. They always leaked and so I've been a Pampers princess ever since Josh.
And so, that there are the ramblings of this rainy day woman. I'm neither stoned nor vengeful. Just wanted to record that snippit before I forgot the hilarity of it all.

Friday, March 9, 2012

To Meet the Meat

I have a confession.

I quit eating bacon. I just had to put that out there so there wasn't any confusion. I buy it. I cook it. I don't eat it, however. I don't eat bacon anymore. There I said it. (a big sigh of relief)

If we're being honest here, I can tell you, too, that it has been a few months. Although the other day, I did have a BLT but then felt horrible about it! The guilt over the calories wasn't worth it.

I'm pretty sure I'll be required to check my "Texan" card at the door. Bacon is big business. It's pseudo-chic now.

They even have chocolate-covered bacon and bacon-scented candles just in case you needed some "meat" aroma circulating through your adobe. Romantic, huh?
Bacon Man Candle

I can see this making an appearance in a white-trash love scene.

"Honey, hold my beer. I gots ta light the candles."

She smiles and squeals with delight. Eagerly holds his bottle of Old Milwaukee and blurts, "Candles? How romantic, Bubba!"

"Oh yeah, got 'em down at the bait store. They remind me of my favorite thing."

"The vacation we keep talking about taking to the islands?"

"Hell no, woman! I'm talking about bacon!"


><><> SLAM ><><>

"Lorene???? Lorene????"

And he snuggles down with his beer and his man scent.


Or, for the man that has everything? How about a bacon wallet? Raw Bacon Weave ID Holder
Just what I want in my back pocket. A weaving of fat and listeria-laden salmonella strips. Sounds appetizing, no?!

And if you cut your finger? You just might need... oh yes... Bacon bandaids!
Bacon Bandages

I understand the whole idea of a novelty gift but I think GaGa's meat dress must haven some dork a meat erection and he went to a whole new freakish level with the whole bacon thing. Yuck.

I could always bring up Biblical talk, too, since I have been known to do that on occasion -- it says in the Bible you're not supposed to eat pork. Deuteronomy I think. I could go look it up but frankly, I'm going to just go on a hunch here and say, if you want to fact check my blog. Go ahead -- waste your own time.

But it's not about the Biblical direction on dietary consumption (for me) that led me astray, it's about the nutrition (or rather lack thereof) from eating a crispy piece of fat. The risk doesn't seem worth the reward. I don't feel guilty about much -- just the way I tick -- but I am my own worst enemy when it comes to consumption-guilt. It's a weight thing. If I knew how to break the cycle, I would. We are our own worst enemies, I've found.

Ok, well, that's not entirely true, the media is the devil and everyone's worst enemy but second to that, it's ourselves.

But, I tangent... (I know, shocker, right?) So, no bacon!

When you're looking to clean up not only your diet, but your body, you start taking a second look at a lot of things. Reassessment, if you will.

Now, the fact remains that most of my grocery shopping has and is done around the perimeter of the grocery store like it's "supposed" to be. Ask the experts, they'll tell you. You know: lean meats, diary, produce, yadda, yadda, yadda.

However, I have children.

I have active children.

And, believe it or not (and I know this will be a shocker for you), I am NOT superwoman. (I know, it was really hard to admit that just now. Don't say it again so that I don't have to believe it.)

I mean, when I have time, yes, I will bake my own bread. I like to bake (and cook) from scratch because I simply don't like not being able to pronounce what is on the side of a package. But seeing that I am neither SuperWoman (shut UP I can't stand hearing that) nor a miracle worker, I don't always have time to bake from scratch, I do resort to pre-packaged baked goodness. Granted, it's typically whole wheat, whole grain sugar-free loaves purchased in a store wrapped in a plastic bag. And, I'm totally okay with that.

Furthermore, the thought that someone can add something to prepackaged food that leaves it shelf stable for YEARS... that just really oogies me out. I'm sorry, but things are SUPPOSED to go bad. Buy what you need and then go back and buy more! Duh!

When my kids are grown, they can buy whatever kind of bread they want. Until then, mama shops so you eat what is put in front of you. Period.

The big contention in this house (for me) is meat. Big meat eaters. I'm not. I could easily lose red meat and pork from my diet and be pretty content. I didn't say COMPLETELY but I don't feel I would miss much.

I do like chicken, fish and seafood, though... so I couldn't go complete tree-huggin-granola-head-Earth-lovin'-don't-eat-anything-with-eyes-I'm-going-to-throw-red-paint-on-your-fur-and-burn-your-leather-boots. That's not me. Extremists annoy me. Seriously. Plus, I want a pair of Old Gringos! Yeah, PETA scum -- bite my boot!

You see, not too terribly long ago, I was just sitting in bed one night and a thought popped into my head.


Yes, self?

You worked for the meat industry. You're aware of what they do, just now how they did it.

Hmm... you're right. Let's research.

And so I did.

In short, I was aware that cattle were grown, transported to a processor, processed, packaged, and then sold. It's a neat clean little "idea" that the majority of us live with.

However, I can't get over the idea of how they're killed. I wanted to know what exactly they do to kill the animals. Morbid, yes, I know. But they're my thoughts and it's my head!

I think could totally deal if I knew that processors shot every animal and they (the animals, obviously) died immediately and were then processed. Seriously, that -- I think I could deal with. It's the thought that they're slaughtering animals who are NOT dead yet and that DO feel pain.

It's haunting.

And you know, that the people that work in these places don't feel the same about animals that... well, people like me feel or they'd be hugging them all, giving them blankets when it's cold, providing them shelter, feeding them green grass and running them a bubble bath scented with lavender oil... providing each with a personalized collar and a bell, too. Don't forget the bell. I mean, they're called "cow bells" for goodness' sake!

Yes, I'm that bad. My DOGS have electric blankets for Pete's sake! I am an animal lover, through and through. Animals (dogs, especially) are the only unconditional love you will get here on Earth... ever. We could learn something from them.

Those people that work at processing plants have to have some complete detachment to the fragility and preciousness of life and living creatures. I seriously think they could all become serial killers and go on dismembering sprees throughout the countryside without a second thought. I don't know how you could do that for a living and still have compassion for any animals' suffering.

I've seen the undercover videos on the internet shot of animals that are not deceased hanging from their back legs squealing in the most agonizing pain I could imagine... it's filmed because it obviously DOES happen. I would like to think that it never would but I'm human and know if there is a human element -- the design is automatically flawed.

So, in some twisted train of thought -- it's continue to consume knowing that I potentially caused suffering or wipe that image out of my head by not. Right now, I'm pretty much choosing "not." Yes, I have a vivid imagination and those are thoughts that haunt me. Bite me.

I mean, I've hunted. My family -- growing up -- were hunters. Our entire front room was covered in dead things and skins and stuffed critters and fish. They hunted dove, quail, deer... whatever. They hunted. Well... they "hunted." I put it in quotes because it's hardly "hunting" if you're in a warm, heated blind playing target practice to your pet deer that have learned to come visit your electric feeder at certain times of the day. You're shooting wild pets at that point -- that's NOT hunting -- just so we're clear about that.

And, I have no problem WITH hunting, if you're going to eat it. I don't like the killing just to kill type thing. But that's another rant for another day.

So, although I did shoot a deer on my own, I wasn't a hunter.

I cried.

I never shot another one.

Don't get me wrong, I totally get the whole "beast of burden" thing but the idea that they are suffering because of me... it haunts me.

I love animals.

I want a cow (for a pet). You've seen Elise at the State Fair of Texas. She's got a sweet gig! All cows should be so lucky!

I also want a bear... but we're not talking about bears.

As an aside, Josh wants an alpaca or a llama. I'm not sure if he was just being funny, but at least you can realize that strangeness is apparently genetic. We're all doomed. It may be advantageous for us to join the circus and just care for their critters but then I'd be struggling to not throat punch the PETA protesters at the shows. I'd certainly have some assault charges laid against me if I were to join the circus.

Any-who, I tangent... yes... me...tangent...again. It's my blog....

So, I've slowly been cutting back on my consumption of red meat and have completely wiped out bacon and pork. Amazing that it took this long just to say that, but...

You know... it's my blog... and I like words... and tangents... and overuse of the ellipsis.


Spring break

You'd think me, being the ultimate planner, would have actually planned something for spring break.

I didn't.

I don't care.

I wasn't feeling it this year.

Josh, however, was afforded the opportunity to travel with his best friend to Florida to visit Universal Studios and Disney and I'm excited that at least he is able to go somewhere. Although, he would go somewhere had he not accompanied them on their vacation - Iowa -- and my heart would still be equally as heavy.

Having children is hard.

I mean, obviously having them is hard (and for those freak-minded all-natural "I want to feel all the pain" idiots... you don't get a cookie or a medal for doing that so -- suck it!) I had a near ten-pound baby. I'm petite. Do the math. Epidurals were made for a reason! You try passing a bowling ball and then we'll friggin' talk!

But just the idea of "having" children is so very hard. Your heart really walks around outside your body. And the older they get, the more you realize that you do not swoop in and rescue them from their boo-boo's but teach them HOW to cope and deal. Let them learn life lessons and let them learn to teach others to do the same.

I find the older they get, the more I pray and the more I realize how fleeting time is.

Regardless, when he's gone... the air is different.

Things are different.

Meals are different.

I miss him.

He's mine.

I'm his.

But he sent me a text today and he said "love you too. ur the best."

Big ole sappy crocodile tears welled up in my eyes.

And then I went upstairs to his room... and the whole happy feeling... yeah, it went away almost immediately.

My eye immediately began to twitch. Anyone have a haz-mat suit?

The end in sight...

I'm on the downward stretch of losing the baby weight. I can still CALL it baby weight until he turns two, right? Otherwise, if I have to say I'm fat -- I really just might go into a funk. So, let's call the padding "baby weight" -- kapeesh?

Groovy. I'm glad we're on the same page.

Today, the boys shipped off to school and I did what all stay-at-home mom's do best. I lay on the couch in my robe and slippers, fondling the remote control scrolling through steamy episodes of Divorce Court, Judge Judy, Wendy Williams and re-runs of Dr. Phil. It's a mad, mad world out there. I think these shows are so popular because they allow even the most defunct person to feel an iota of "normal" (whatever that is.)

Seriously, though, I watched re-runs of Guiding Light.

Bwa ha ha ha! KIDDING! I don't watch television. I have Facebook.

(And children.)

But mostly, I have a life.

Shocker, I'm sure.

Today, however, I endured much television. Enough to numb my mind AND my ass (and that's a lot). You see, Captain Pampers, Curly-B, ankle-biter supreme... yes the one who bashed my head with a cabinet door night before last... that sweet little footy-jammy clad lad wasn't feeling the magic. Turns out he was a tad under the weather (101.6 temp.)

Oh I won't start the "whoa is me" pity party because he's a kid. They get sick. That's what they do. Plus, he's building immunity and his body is doing it's job. Can't really complain about it when you look at it that way, right? He's not feverishly terminal. It's just an inconvenient bug since it happened to hit on a Friday before a week-long holiday. But, hey, it is what it is.

And, because of today, I shall never get the theme song for Word World out of my brain. If I hear that God-forsaken duck's voice one more time, I may scream loud enough to wake the dead in China. But, since we're on the topic of Word World (not like you have a choice), why is it that the dog can't talk but the duck, bear, pig, ant and bug can? It's like on Mickey Mouse where they have Goofy (a dog -- i think? who talks, a mouse and his girlfriend, a duck and his girlfriend, whatever the heck Pete is...) they can all talk and Pluto can't. Why IS that? That makes no sense. Well, hot dog, hot dog, hot diggity dog! Rest assured, that's equally annoying.

And speaking of bodies doing work (like Benji's fighting the fever -- are you following my tangents?)... yes... mine is back at work (my body, not the tangent...stay with me here). I took the doctor's advice of taking at least 2-3 months off running and now am starting back slowly. (Slowly=yuck!) Anyone that knows me realizes that "slowly" for me would be as much fun as studying the Tax Code. Simple would not want to do it... ever... for any reason... ever... never. Did I mention, ever? Slow sucks.

I would rather ...well, there is no reason to list all the things I would much rather endure than WALKING but -- it is what it is. I must walk before I can run.

I'm not always the best patient, but I remember like yesterday the PAIN and equally what hell it was to walk for a good, solid week after my knee injury when I'd fried the ligaments in both knees. NO BUENO! I couldn't walk up the stairs for a good four days. That's hard to do in a two-story house.

So, doc said, "Start slow." I start slow. Check. Start small. Check.

My only problem is that I have a competitive spirit and it really pisses me off to see people jogging by me knowing that I could easily pace or pass them, but I'm trying to be a good patient. Being good sucks. I hate rules, too.

The other thing I hate is that you just can't go as far walking. You get places so much faster when you run... because.. you know.. you're like... running. (Duh?)

The other thing that's cool about running is that when you ultimately do begin to walk after you've cooled down, you almost feel like you're walking faster. You're like Dash from The Incredibles. Or, kind of like you were on one of those pedestrian walkways at the airports that help shuttle passengers quicker down long stretches of terminal tunnel. It's a rather cool experience, both the walkway and the after effects of a good run.

Hey, you gotta get your kicks where you can get them, right? I like feeling jet propelled first thing in the morning. Sue me.

So, first the knee conditioning, slow and steady. Slow. And steady. Did you see the "s" word there? Slow? Yes... slow. Did I mention I have a problem with being patient? I hate waiting. I'm full throttle 99% of the time at anything I do. Passion for perfection drives me. Perfectionism is a blessing and a curse. Professionally, it's a gift. Personally... I'm going to consider it a "pro" even though others might call it a character flaw. Again, it is what it is. Sue me.

Eventually will come the running. I have new "chews", you know?! That means my feet are ready to run. They're equipped to run. I have the drive and the will. I just have to condition the knees (a lot) before I an embark on that journey. But, I'm ready. Anything worth having is worth working for and the prize isn't in the end... it's in the journey. Or, that's what I'm telling myself, anyhow.

Next, will come the weights. I won't lie. Weights intimidate me. I can't stand big smelly men that look like a uterus grunting like they're birthing an Ottoman Empire with each set. Plus, I like having company... you know, so you can talk about the walking uterus-men. Steroid-heads make me sick. They're just gross. However, I need weights. I enjoy weights. I like feeling my arms shaking the next day when I've killed it at the gym. I love the feeling my legs and butt when you aren't sure if they're going to be able to hold you up because you tore 'em UP at the gym! I LOVE THAT!

However, just getting back IN the habit is what's really hard for me to do. I had tons of friends at my old gym and so I always had someone to work out with and talk to or at least someone I knew to give me a spot or something. When you're familiar with a place and it's people it's comfortable. Walking into a new gym, you feel like the new kid in school who is wearing last year's style.

Plus, did I mention the fact that when you're out of a routine, having to continually check your form, watch your sets, time your rest periods, learn the new machines, learn the gym layout, etc. you feel hen-pecked by the regimen. I liked having it all in my head and just doing this -- bam! Doing that --bam. Doing the other -- bam! Having a ten minute stretch session and then heading home. I was wrapped up in an hour. It was aces! Getting back into it will be such an ass whip. (Literally and physically!) This weekend is the process where that regimen gets detailed and printed.

I'm 11 pounds from "goal" where I know I will feel comfortable in my own skin (to a degree)... I will never accept what having children has done... it's criminal. I had the CUTEST belly button when I was younger. THE CUTEST, I tell ya!

So the end is in sight for this chapter and what I've been working on. However, a chapters is right around the corner. Stay tuned!