Happy Halloween Mom and Dad! I Love You! I Really Do...

Conversation between my Dad and myself:

Me: "Hey Dad! Guess What! Kathleen has sent me some GREAT pictures of you and mom at Halloween!"

Dad: "Oh, that is nice."

ME: "Yeah! They are hilarious! I think I may save a few for when I really need to hold something over your head."

Dad: "Oh, that is nice."

Me: "I can't wait until Halloween so that I can post one of these!"

Dad: "Cristin Ann Cleaver! Don't you DARE post a picture of me from Halloween. Do you understand me? Am I making myself clear? You are NOT TO POST A PICTURE OF ME FROM HALLOWEEN ON YOUR BLOG!"

Me: "OK... relax. I won't. Is mom there?"

Dad: "I mean it young lady! You'll be sorry. Talk to your mother..."

Mom: "Hulooooooo"

Me: "Ma, I just asked Dad if I could post a picture of you guys in Halloween costumes on my blog and he FREAKED out!"

Mom: "Who is this?"

Me: "Mother! It is ME!"

Mom: "Oh... I'm sorry, I'm confused. Are you actually asking permission to do something? You mean you haven't already posted this picture and are calling to tell us about it? You are forewarning us?"

Me: "Well... I wasn't really asking permission... I was really just making conversation. It was either talk about the Halloween picture or discuss the bowel movements of Dad's dog."

Mom: "Well, you know as well as I do that it is easier to ask for forgiveness then it is to ask for permission."

Me: "You are so wise and powerful.

Mom: "Who is this?"

So, here is a picture from Halloween past. I can neither confirm nor deny that these are my parents... they could be my in-laws. You never know.



Two Can Play At That Game...

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Rachel Ray Caused Our Economic Slump...

The other day I was walking through a Gordman's. If you don't know what a Gordman's is... think Marshalls, but without the hoards of racks of clothes that have been picked over, tossed on the ground and left there for everyone to trample.

I was walking through looking for some Autumn decor for my home that would be cheap, but not look cheap. Something that would make me look like I am an interior designer without spending an arm and a leg. Anything that did not scream "I can only afford Wal Mart!" In my pursuit for false airs, I found myself in the kitchen aisles. Now, you should know that I am a kitchen dish whore. Maybe not all dishes... mostly just bowls. I don't know where this addiction comes from but if I see a cute serving bowl I just have to have it! I can't stop myself. Actually, I know exactly where this addiction comes from... it comes from my father. My dad cannot walk past a garage sale without buying up all of the kitchen dishes they are selling for a quarter. When my parents moved from the Chicago area to Atlanta I think I packed no less then 1000 cute bowls and kitchen dishes . He also has a love for the most god-awful knick-knacks one can find. Need a little dog holding a balloon in his teeth? He has it. Can't find that one little girl with a missing shoe? He has that one too. What about blue birds? Bears? Kitty cats and mice? He's got you covered... and they have somehow found their way onto all of my parents window sills. I call it "They Can't Help Themselves, They Are Old" decor.

Anyway, as I was ogling all of the kitchen bowls I saw this: It is a Rachel Ray Trash Bowl.

What the hell? A trash bowl? I will have you know that this trash bowl cost $14.99 at Gordman's... that means that it retails for at least $21.99 elsewhere. Now, who the hell does Rachel Ray think she is?

No wonder people can't afford their mortgages! They are off buying stupid crap like a TRASH BOWL! I personally just use the plastic bag that my produce comes in, or I just use my GARBAGE DISPOSAL!

What a waste. Get it... waste. HA!

I couldn't stand Rachel Ray and her 30 minute meals before this... which by the way, don't get me started on her 30 minute meals. If I had a crew of people sorting out all of my ingredients and I moved at warp speed and did not have 4 children asking me questions, demanding my attention and having to put at least one tourniquet on a limb at least once a week while I was trying to prepare dinner, I would be done in 30 minutes as well. Rachel Ray needs to get real. She needs to have my kids in her studio while she is fixing dinner... and if she can do it in 30 minutes and still make things like salmon with mint sauce and not hot dog with a can of BBQ beans... well then I will buy her damn trash bowl. But until I see something that would even slightly resemble my life, I ain't buyin' it!

*Bowing-winking-waving* Thank you... Thank you very much.
Please... if you have purchased a trash bowl and are brave enough to leave a comment, I strongly encourage you to tell me how this has made your life easier. How has this trash bowl lightened the load of making dinner for the masses. How has purchasing this bowl made you more at peace with cooking dinner 7 nights a friggen week to little ungrateful people. Please tell me! I want to know! If you can show me the light... I may just drink the kool-aide and go buy one of these things. If you can't tell me how wonderful you dinner making chore is now that you have a trash bowl that you actually PAID for-well then, I may just make fun of you. It is up to you-c'mon leave a comment!


We All Knew It Was Bound To Happen...

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The Good... The Bad... The PMS

Things That Do Not Go Well With PMS:
  1. Husbands who are deployed.
  2. Children.
  3. Having to talk to people in general.
  4. The bathroom scale.
  5. Mirrors.
  6. My hair... I think I may just cut it all off the next time I am PMSing.
  7. People who drive on the same road as me.
  8. Telemarketers.
  9. People who are happy for no apparent reason.
  10. Diets

Things That Go Well With PMS:

  1. Potato chips
  2. Bread.
  3. Chocolate.
  4. Sad Movies (I recommend Steel Magnolias)
  5. All of the food in your pantry, cupboards and fridge.
  6. Did I mention bread?
  7. Screaming at the top of my lungs... my mother used to yell "GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!"
  8. I said bread right?
  9. Locking yourself in the bathroom for no less then 30 minutes.
  10. Crying... crying is really really good for PMS. Crying while you are eating bread is even better.


Living The Simple Life...

Well, at least my version of the simple life.

Since it is October, that means that Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Thanksgiving is great and all, but I personally think it is a day in which I have to survive in order to get to black Friday. My favorite holiday of the year. The holiday in which I go stand in line outside of a Target or Toys R Us or the mall at 3 a.m. in order to do all of my Christmas shopping for everyone and be home in time for lunch. It is a glorious day-one that I look forward to with great anticipation. I love getting all of the my shopping out of the way so that I can spend Advent actually focusing on Advent and not on my shopping list.

Well, this year my husband has informed me that I need to tighten the belt a little. Blech. Can't I just live and pretend that we are rich? Oh wait... that is what got America into the situation we are in. We were greedy and now we are tightening our belts. You all knew it was going to end up like this. We couldn't go on living like we were Paris Hilton every day of our lives forever.

All morning I have been tightening the belt around here. I called our insurance company and took all coverage off of my husband's truck (except for liability) while he is gone. That was an easy phone call to make because when they told me our savings I had visions of sugar plums dancing in my head. Also, this does not directly affect me so it was simple... living simple, it is what I am all about.

Then I called our mobile phone carrier (didn't I sound Bri-ish just then? "I'll ring your mobile." Oh how I love the Brits and the way they talk. Swoon.) and I disconnected my husband's mobile (I think we should all call our cell phones our mobiles today... and make sure you say it with a Bri-ish accent. A salute to our proper friends) since he is deployed and his mobile has been sitting in our cupboard (notice I said cupboard instead of cabinet... if I keep this up I am going to have to apply for dual-citizenship) turned off. Why do I need to pay for a mobile that is not mobiling at all? That savings make me pull my favorite Christmas CD out of storage and I have been listening to it ever since. Man I love how that drunk lady sings the Twelve Days of Christmas. Again... this does not directly affect me as it is my husband's mobile (Relax all of you Military Supporters out there! I'll turn it back on when he gets home. Sheesh.)

Now, my last phone call was a tough one. It actually hurt me. My last phone call was to the cable company. Sniff... sniff. I cancelled all of our movie channels. That is right... we had all of the movie channels. Want to make something of it?

This is where you all come in. If I think about this too much I will have an anxiety attack so you must promise to do something for me... you must promise to alert me when you find out when the season 3 of The Tudors is coming back on Showtime. Don't ask questions... just email me post hast. I will call the cable company again and order only Showtime and when the season is over I will cancel it again. See? Easy. I am so good at saving money.

So what plans do all of you have for saving money? Anyone selling a kidney so you can buy little Timmy an XBox this year? Anyone living on rice and beans, beans and rice? How about the family dog? Thinking of selling Rover? What about your youngest child? They whine and cry anyway right? How do you tighten your belts? Inquisitive minds want to know... so does Congress.


The Road To Hell Is Paved With Good Intentions...

This morning I woke with bounding joy and energy. OK, that was a lie. I don't think I have ever in my life woke with bounding energy... more like "Crap, is it morning already? What day is it? Do I have children? How did I get so fat? Is that a baby I hear crying? Why are people calling for MOM? Is it too early to eat leftover cake? I hate mornings."

I do however have joy in the morning... at least that is what all the sweet old ladies tell me at Church. They look at my children and say "What joy you must have in your heart." It is true... I do have joy in my heart. I am just not sure if it comes from the children who have sprung forth from my loins or from the leftover cake I had for breakfast.

ANYWAY... this morning I woke up and decided to start making lists. When I start making lists that means that I am about to go all cleaning lady up in here (I am so hip hoppy-even when I am not trying.) I am about to get out my bucket o' cleaning supplies and scrub and wipe until my neighbor calls to ask if I am cleaning because she can see a mushroom cloud of bleach fumes hovering above my house.

Well... it has not worked out quite the way I planned today. First my sister called, and then I had to call my other sister and discuss everything that the other sister said, and then my dad called to tell me that his dog would not go outside to poop and he has been yelling at the damn thing all morning. Oh, and his Christmas cactus is starting to bloom Then I decided to change the ink cartridges for my printer so that I could print more pictures that will ultimately end up in a shoebox with all of the other pictures that I swear will one day be in photo albums with cute captions and squiggly lined decorations (you should know that I have completed a total of two scrapbooks in my entire life. Both were done before I had children. I think I am too cynical to make happy scrapbooks. It is a curse) Then I put the baby to bed and made lunch for the 5 year old which she did not like so I decided to eat her lunch as well as my own. And now I am heading to pick up the older kids from school and that will lead into homework and evening activities and a dinner that my 5 year old will refuse to eat...

So my bucket o' cleaning supplies are sitting in my bathroom waiting to be used. My shower is crying out to be cleaned, my toilet is begging for a little fresh air and my sink is pleading to have the concrete toothpaste chiseled off of it, but it will have to wait for another day. I cannot even guarantee it will be tomorrow that I get around to cleaning my bathroom. Cleaning a bathroom is something that you have to wake up and want to do... not something that you can just willy-nilly decide to do on a whim. There are certain clothes that need to be worn for bathroom cleaning day and your hair needs to be up in a ponytail. I mean, why would I clean my bathroom after I did my hair and put make up on? That would be like dating someone from the wrong side of the tracks, taboo, weird, just not right.

Maybe I'll just go in and spray the cleaner on the walls of the shower real quick... and squirt a little in the toilet and take a Lysol wipe to the sink. That should buy me some time don't you think? Lord only knows when I will wake up and want to clean again... it could be weeks, even months!

Most likely it will be tomorrow because who am I kidding? I cannot stand a dirty bathroom... why, it was just 3 days ago that I scrubbed the floors until my fingers bled.

Being a housewife is hard I tell you... hard.


Speaking OF High School Loves...

Has anyone seen the new television program "My Own Worst Enemy" with Christian Slater? If you have not... go to hulu.com right now and watch the first two episodes to catch yourself up. You won't be sorry.

When I was in high school I had a huge crush on Christian Slater. I saw him in movies like "Heathers," "Pump up the Volume," "Untamed Heart," and my personal favorite "Bed of Roses."

I liked his voice, I liked the way his one eyebrow would lift when he spoke, I liked the way he was a rebel, and I liked the way he was a high school dropout (hey, I can't help it... there was something about bad boys that sent me over the edge and my mother straight to our Parish Priest for advice.)

Now Christian is back with this new television drama, and he is a middle aged man. Now, some of you may know that middle aged men make me weak in the knees. My husband is a middle aged man and that just turns me on. I don't know why... it could be because I am a middle aged (well, ALMOST a middle aged) woman.

The great thing about this show is that Christian plays a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde type of character. On one side you have the family man who is a good father and faithful husband, and on the other side you have a bad ass that is out to rid the world of all things evil. Basically he is the epitome of what every woman wants... a solid man who has a hero streak in him.

You know... come to think of it, this TV show sounds a lot like my husband's life. I will be sure to watch the mailbox for our royalty check from NBC. They couldn't have found a better middle aged man to portray him-I'll have to remember to thank them.
Oh, and one last thing... Matthew McConaughey if you are reading this (which I am sure you check my blog-don't act like you don't) I want to ensure you that in no way are my affections turning from you and focusing on Mr. Slater. Although, I cannot guarantee anything if he starts walking around with his shirt off and takes up bongo playing.


Google Thinks You Are A Nobody...

Somehow I found myself in a very strange place today. I was alone and the house was quiet. I know... crazy. I did not know what to do with myself. I thought of doing some laundry or loading the dirty dishes into the dishwasher, but I quickly regained my lazy persona and decided to surf the web instead of actually doing something constructive. It is a rarity that I have a quiet house so I was not going to waste it by doing chores! Puleez!

I sat at my computer and thought... "what to do, what to do." I thought of things to write on this blog and came up with nothing (unless you wanted to read a post on the lady bugs that have invaded our house that aren't really lady bugs but their nasty orange cousins that fool us into thinking they are nice lady bugs.) I thought of balancing the checkbook, but that would fall under the "chore" category as well so I was not going there. I thought of browsing You Tube, but I have never really gotten into You Tube and if I did decide to browse it I would sit there are search for things like "new babies" or "puppies" and you know as well as I do that that would be a waste of my free time... and I would either end up at a Pet Store or buying ovulation kits so you can see that I need to avoid You Tube at all cost.

So I sat there poised, wondering what to do when I decided to start googling people from my past. I have never done this before... well, OK, maybe once of twice, but I have only googled my parents-which came up with something from the Irish Mafia that I quickly clicked off of because I have been trained since I was a child that you just don't question where the extra money comes from or why there is a severed finger in the freezer. I have also goggled my husband-which came up with nothing, my sisters-which again... nothing, and my in-laws which came up with stuff about Swiss Bank accounts that I made sure I saved to my favorites.

Today I started googling childhood friends, my high school boyfriends, and finally all of the people who were ever mean to me growing up... Ellen G, I am talking about you-where ever you are... either in jail or in Hollywood.

I don't know what I was expecting, but I would have thought that at least ONE person from my past would have been a huge success... but in the end I realized that they were all big disappointments. The saddest thing is that I saw how old I am getting. I cannot remember people's last names to save my life. It is very hard to google "John F-something, who lived on 86th St. I think and has a sister, or was it a brother, and a dad with the same name." Google gave me nothing on him. I did find one old boyfriend who I am happy to report was fat. That made me feel better after I read that he is part of some "Millionaire Club."

Finally I googled myself. Apparently I am a nobody as well since Google has no idea who the hell I am. What does this stupid computer know anyway.

What about you? Go Google yourself and see what you discover. I bet you may just be a professional football player or a underground musician and you didn't even know it!


His Wish... My Command

Go read this... Let me get this straight…

He says it better then I ever could. Bravo!


An Open Letter To All Restaurants In Omaha...

Dear beloved restaurants in Omaha,

I regret to inform you that my family will no longer be able to dine at your establishments. It is not an economy thing... it is a 18 month old toddler thing. You see, for 18 months now my family has been able to happily partake in your yummy meals. We have been able to order appetizers and even desserts at your lovely chow halls. We have thoroughly enjoyed our leisurely lunches, or our celebratory dinners, and even our "not yet showered" early morning breakfasts, but last night something happened to make me realize that we have to take a break from our relationship with you. It is nothing that you did-you have been wonderful. It is just something that we have to work out.

You see, the 18 month old in our family has gone from adorably cute to holy terror in the span of a week. When we go out to eat, I can no longer guarantee that my toddler will not climb on tables, scream at the top of her lungs, throw all of her food on the floor-or at the nice family sitting next to us, or have a tantrum that would make the Supernanny throw in the towel.

So you are going to have to readjust your books. Figure out another way to pay your heating bill next month because the Cleaver family will no longer be a hearty contributor to your finances.

I hope we can remain friends and who knows... maybe with time we can start a relationship again. Right now I have to say good-bye though.

Believe me, this hurts me more then it hurts you. You will find another family to buy your pasta dishes and your chicken nuggets. You'll bounce back from this... you'll see.

Please don't call us. Give me a chance to get over you.

I'm sorry,



My Mom Says That Your Mom Is Weird...

Emma has gymnastics every Tuesday morning. She loves this class with all of her heart and happily bounds into the gymnasium each week. I like this class because unlike other ballet or gymnastic schools we have been to, I do not have to stick around and make small talk with all of the other moms who invite me to playgroup and ask me how I could possibly survive without my husband home and why in the world I would want to homeschool my children! This school offers you an out-there is a golden piece of paper that you sign your name to and leave your cell number in case they need to get a hold of you and then you can run free without your 5 year old for an entire hour. Amazing, I know.

I can get a lot done in an hour without Emma. Without Em I can get the grocery shopping done, have the van oil changed, mail 100 packages at the post office, end world hunger and discover the cure for the common cold. I am not kidding. With Em I can basically get her socks on in an hour. Maybe only one sock... that is how slow she is. It is not a bad thing, Emma just likes to stop and smell the roses in life. She stops and smells every rose she can possibly find.

I must admit that I really do like to escape the gymnastics waiting room. I am not one of those moms who needs to chat with other moms about little Billy's toilet habits or why little Molly won't stop biting her baby brother. (I have a blog to do that). I have never been able to make that kind of small talk with other women because I usually look at them and say things like "Are you neurotic?' or "What kind of medication are you on?" I also loathe playgroups. Don't get me wrong, I love love love to have my children play with other children, but they are usually children that I have done an extensive background check on to make sure they aren't little destroyers disguised in a sweet little body. Playgroups to me are more for the mom and not so much for the kids. I have been to so many playgroups where a kid is trying to get their mother's attention because he has had a toy stolen from him or some other little kid took a two-by-four to their head, and the mom is getting more and more irritated that she having to stop her conversation about the use of Splenda in baking and how it is just wonderful to feed your children healthy cookies with chemicals that they are not sure if they cause cancer or not but dammit little Billy! JUST GO PLAY! Can't you see mommy is having her own playgroup while you play with other kids who will hit you, bite you, and make you feel inferior? It is all part of the circle of life so deal with it Mufasa.

No, I am not a playgroup kind of mom so that makes me an outcast in the gymnastics waiting room. A person of interest on the mom list. "You see that blond woman over there? The one who thinks she is 10lbs. lighter than what she really is? She doesn't do playgroups! Can you believe it? Who does she think she is? Does she really think she can parent her young children without the social interaction of little bullies and brats? The nerve!"

Well, yesterday was "parent participation" day at gymnastics. This is basically a way for the instructors to show the moms what their children are learning in the class. It is actually kind of sweet and the kids love to have mom or dad in there with them... but let me tell you, it is like the back stage of a beauty pageant for the moms. I must say that if all of the moms are as nice to their children when other people aren't watching and judging them as they are in plain view, well then the Safe Haven law here in Nebraska is going to be getting a reprieve from all of the 5-17 year olds that have been dropped off in the past few weeks. Phew.

I must admit that I fall victim to this evil charade as well. Of course I don't want strangers knowing that I yell at my kids, that I send them to their room when I have had enough or that I call them "twerp" or blame them for my future admission to the loony bin. I want strangers to think I am a fabulous mother and we live a fabulous life and my kids are so well behaved that they need to say things to me like "How do you do it oh wise and powerful one?"

Yeah... none of that fabulous stuff happened for me yesterday. You see, on these parent participation days, younger siblings are not allowed in the gymnasium. This means that you have to find someone to watch your baby for an hour while you go skip around a smelly gymnasium with your 5 year old proving to the world that you are a great mom to this kid... but a bad mom to the one you just dumped off at the babysitters.

I don't have a babysitter for my kids. I watch them myself. I don't have any friends who do not work and I could drop the baby off with because if you remember, we recently moved here and all of the friends I have here are the ones that I have had for years now and they all stopped having children about 10 years ago so I am the only one who is not only old, but also has young children at home during the day. And... AND... My husband is GONE! Yesterday I was really twerked off that he was gone and not home to watch the baby for me. The nerve!

So I went to gymnastics with Emma and the baby. I even put little Mary in my wrap that binds her to my body in such a way that she could not escape if she tried to... not even if she bribed me with kisses and hugs.

I was not allowed into the gymnasium with Emma. I was shunned. I now know what it felt like to have lived in Salem during the witch trials. The gymnastic rulers of the world reminded me that younger siblings were not welcome into the big gymnasium because why? They may have fun? Or they may smile and giggle? Oh... because they could interrupt the Olympic hopefuls that are taking gymnastics at the ripe age of 5.

So Emma was the only kid there without a mom. All of the other moms looked at me and shook their heads as they filed past in their tight sweat pants and stocking feet. I should have grabbed Emma out of class so that she would not have to endure such a long hour without her mother there to participate with her... so that she was not an outcast while all of the other little brats had their fabulous mothers with them and Emma's mom, the lady in jeans and a sweatshirt in the waiting room? She was labeled a BAD MOM by all of the women who were able to get their lives together that morning and find someone to watch their babies.

But I didn't drag Emma out. I know how much she loves gymnastics so I sat on the other side of the glass windows and watched her the entire hour. I clapped when she did something good and I cheered when she accidentally tripped a mother walking by. After class we went out for a Happy Meal... because sometimes you need a little trans fat to right a wrong.

So the Mother of the Year Award is still up for grabs if any of you would like to take it from me. I know you are out there... but you are going to have to come up with something a lot better then "Tommy screamed that he hated me in the middle of Church last weekend" to steal this award from me. It takes a lot of be mother of the year. Do you have what it takes? Do ya?


America Owns Him... I Wouldn't Have It Any Other Way

I had to go on Base today. There was a rotator going out and I wanted to put a package on board for my husband. Another group of men and women were heading overseas... leaving loved ones to do what they are called to do.

Now that Carl is gone, I don't like going onto Base. I go when I need to make a large commissary run or when one of the kids needs to go to the clinic, but other then that, I avoid the Base like the plague. It is not because I don't like the Base-I actually love it-it is because my heart breaks each time I pass through the gates. The Base represents my husband. My husband represents the Base. All of the men and women in uniform are a part of my husband. They share his love for this Great Nation. My heart aches for my husband when I am on Base.

I have always loved passing through the gates onto Base. It is like going from the outside in. Like going from the outer banks to the safety of a fortress. When I am on base I am surrounded by military members who would put their lives in danger for the safety of mine and my children's. I feel safe amongst the people who stand up to danger and say "If you want to get to my country, you are going to have to go through me first."

We Americans place a huge burden on our military members. We expect them to go to the ends of the earth for us. We expect them to stand up and fight so that we do not need to. We expect them to defeat the enemy at the gates, and they do just that. They do what it takes to keep America safe. They sacrifice and sacrifice again.

You know how people who have faced a debilitating disease and survived have a new outlook on life? They see what they did not see before their life was in danger. They see the importance of life. I wonder how many Americans think about our military in that way. I wonder how many people truly know that men and women in uniform have looked death in the face and survived. They are prepared to do what it takes and don't look back. They know the importance of living, they know the importance of freedom. They know the significance of fighting for those who are unable and standing guard for those who need them.

To top is all off, they are kind. They are considerate. They call people ma'am and sir. They open doors and take off their hats in buildings. They know what respect is. They know what hard work is. They know what if feels like to belong to this country and to have the commitment to uphold the values that we live under.

They will make sure my husband gets his package of love notes and 5 year old drawings. They know how valuable the lifeline to home is.

Do you think John McCain knows how valuable the lifeline home is? He survived thinking of his home. Thinking of the place where he knew he belonged. America. Do you want a President that has always known what it is like to love your country... or one that spent years searching for a place to belong?


Work Or Get Whacked...

I enjoy mowing our lawn... I really do. I have been mowing lawns since my fifth birthday when my father looked down at me and said "Today you are a man... mow the front lawn." I must admit that it was probably my fault that he thought I was a boy seeing as I ran around without my shirt on for the first six years of my life and refused to wear anything pink or pretty or *gasp* a dress! I even looked like a boy thanks to the short haircut I had and my fascination for snakes and everything muddy. Geez... do I miss childhood.

Once I hit puberty my father realized I was a girl but still had me mowing the lawn. My older sister somehow got out of the job the older we got. Her talents were placed elsewhere... like washing dishes. My little sister, well she was crowned a princess the moment she was born so the thought of her having to mow the lawn was preposterous. Her talents were better used by dressing up the dog and looking cute with her bald head (seriously, she did not have any hair until her 12th birthday.)

It was not until my husband married me and rescued me from my life of child labor and no cable TV that I no longer had to mow the lawn. He did it. He did all of the jobs that I grew up doing. He took out the trash, painted the garage, unclogged the toilet, changed the oil in the car and knocked down all wasp nests that were attached to the gutters. The only thing he didn't do that I did growing up was take my grandmother's contacts out of her eyes at night. That is a talent that you are born with... no mere mortal can take the contacts out of a 80 year old woman's eyes with a mini plunger and surgeon-like steady hands the way I could.

Anyway... since my husband has been deployed, I am back to doing all of the manly jobs that have always been his. That means I am back to mowing the lawn. Now, many of you may be saying "June Cleaver, don't you have an 11 year old boy who is more then capable of mowing the lawn?" Yes, you are correct, I do. But there is one problem. My son does not make his mowing lines straight and I just can't take driving up to my house and seeing crooked lines in the lawn. It makes me crazy. I am not proud of my OCD, but I have learned to embrace it and therefore I mow the perfectly straight lines into our lawn myself.

One thing I have not been able to do has been to weed whack. It is not because I don't WANT to weed whack, it is because I have not been able to get the damn weed whacker started!

Each and every week I look at the weed whacker. I read the starting directions. I turn the knob to the letter "A" and pump the little bubble until there is gas in the bubble. I try to hold onto the weed whacker while I pull the chord three times. This is about impossible because I do not have man muscles in my wimpy arms and therefore I cannot hold up the weed whacker and pull the chord all at the same time.

I hate this weed whacker. There are no kidding 7 steps to get this thing started. Women do not make their devices this complicated. The hair dryer? Just turn it to the "on" button. The curling iron? Again, the "on" button works. Blender? "On" button. Dishwasher? "On" button. Stove? "On" button. Husband? Oh... don't get me started on how easy it is to get this one turned on.

Well, Saturday I was able to get the weed whacker started. That is right, I cracked the man code on lawn maintenance. I happily went around the house whacking everything in sight. About mid-way through, I noticed that nothing was getting cut anymore I turned it off (after standing there for a good 5 minutes with it running full speed afraid to turn it off because I was not sure I would be able to turn the damn thing on again). I saw that I was out of the green rope that is needed for doing the whacking. This is the part where I throw the weed whacker down on the ground and kick it and the neighbor who is watching me out of her window picks up her phone poised to dial 911 if need be.

Don't tell my husband, but that weed whacker is still in the middle of the backyard. I am making an example out of it. I bet all of the lawn tools in the garage are freaking out. "Have you seen the weed whacker? The woman took it out on Saturday and it hasn't been seen since! I mean, she brings back the van each time she takes it out and she even brings the lawn mower back... but I am frightened now. What if I don't dig a hole big enough or what if the hoe doesn't-well, you know! Do we send out a rescue team? Do we just sit and wait for the next tool to be whacked?"

Be afraid... be very afraid.


Before You Vote... Meet The Shoes

Everywhere I turn there seems to be so many pictures of Sarah Palin's shoes. It is like the main stream media has turned into Carrie Bradshaw and each time they see Sarah in a pair of fabulous shoes they say "Hello Lover."

I love google. I google things all day every day. I love my site meter even more. I love to see what people have googled that have sent them to my blog. Do you know what the highest google search that directs people to my blog is? Are you ready for this? It is "Does running cause hemorrhoids?" Seriously. I also get a lot of hits about "butt cysts" and "poo." For once I would like to be remembered for my intelligence, but I know you love me for my hemorrhoids.

Anyway, I started googling candidates and their shoes. "Sarah Palin Shoes" came up with there shots:

This one is from the Vice Presidential Debate. I like to call them her "No Place Like Home Shoes."

Here is a closer shot of them. Very nice. I think to be fair Joe should have been wearing 3 inch heels as well. It would have been the politically correct thing to do.

Here is another shot of some Sarah Palin shoes that the media thinks Americans need to see. Obviously all of the voters out there who put fashion above politics are sure to vote for her. I love the Republican Red she so confidently wears.

What in the world? Is this a view or what? The photographer that took this needs to go to confession.

Ignore the "Not for public use"on this photograph. This isn't public, this is a blog.
Here is Sarah Palin with John McCain. Couldn't you tell? This was the only shot the media took of the entire town hall rally they had.

Here is another photo by the photographer that needs to go to confession and say a 3 Hail Mary's and 1 Our Father. This is Sarah and Cindy McCain. I can tell it is Cindy by her blond hair and her humble confidence... can't you?
I found a ton of Sarah Palin shoe pictures, but I could only find this one pair of Obama's shoes.

No comment... Seriously. No comment.

These are the type of shoes that John McCain wears. Hoo-ah.
I could not find anything for Joe Biden... but I did find a pair or two for Hillary:

Is Bill thinking "Hillary? Did you borrow a pair of my mother's shoes again?" or is he thinking "I am so endorsing Obama." Do you see how these shoe photos can leave people just guessing?

This is another pair of Hillary shoes. She got them from her Native American friend "She-Who-Didn't-See-It-Coming"

Personally, If I were running for VP or President, I would wear these suckers. They are red, they are commanding, and they are fashion forward... and they definitely let the American public know where I stand on issues. Don't you think?
And just to let you know that I didn't spend the morning looking at politicians and their shoe choices, I googled something of great importance...

These are the shoes, or lack of shoes, that Matthew McConaughey rolls with. Alright alright alright.


11 Years Ago Today...

My boy is turning 11 today. He is 99% his father and 1% me. A mother should be so lucky to have a boy like mine.

11 is bringing about a lot of changes in him. For starters, he is starting to stink. Not a manly BO stink, but more of a 11 year old stink... which smells a lot like salami that has been left out on the counter for the day.

He is angry most of the time. I think this is a stage that boys go through, but I don't know. I know how to deal with my 13 year old daughter's attitude because I wrote the book on adolescent attitudes for girls, but I am lost with my boy's stages.

He is a man trying to live in a boys body. I can only guess that he is frustrated that he is not in charge-because that is what men want right? To be in charge? That is what we raise our boys to be... in charge of their lives, in charge of a family, in charge of their success. I just wish he would calm down and not want to be in charge so quickly. He has many years ahead of him before he has to pay taxes and save for a child's college education.

My boy is very inquisitive. He can make me nuts in a day by all of the questions he asks. His dad is a champion question answerer, because he knows all of the answers to an 11 year old boy's questions. When my boy looks at me and says things like "Mom? If we had to evacuate and the roads were all backed up, how would we make it out alive?" or " Mom? Do you think we will one day move to Mars because it has resources that we can use here on earth like Iron and water?" I have no other choice but to look at him and say "Honestly, I have no idea." Because I have no idea... I have never thought of evacuation plans or living on Mars. My thinking is in the area of finding the right pair of jeans to fit and how to get to the mall using only back roads.

This has been a hard couple of months for my boy because he is missing his dad. He does not show it very often, but you can see it in his eyes from time to time. He is a sensitive boy who is always concerned with doing the right thing.. not just the right thing for himself but the right thing for his family. He is so much like his dad... so much.

As a birthday gift to my boy I decided to not even open the door of his bedroom this week. I have not complained about dirty boxer shorts on his bathroom floor once. I have fought the urge to ask him if he has brushed his teeth and I have controlled myself and not checked the levels of the shampoo bottle before and after his shower to see if he actually is using soap or just standing in the water for 45 minutes, and yesterday when I picked him up from baseball practice I didn't even complain about the smell, I just opened my window and thanked God for my boy. My boy who wants to be a man... a man just like his dad.


And Now A Message From June Cleaver...

It is my duty to let all of the young single Republicans out there know that I have found the jack-pot for dating. Oh, I suppose even young Democrats can go to this place... it may even help them in the future.

I am talking about a Republican Party Rally.

If you are young and single, then you need to march yourself down the the nearest Republican Party headquarters and volunteer because I will tell you, I have never seen so many good looking young people as I did yesterday at the Sarah Palin Rally here in Omaha. That is OMAHA... not Obamaha.

If you are looking for a clean-cut, conservative, EMPLOYED, educated, Christian person to spend the rest of your life with... well I just offered you the best kept secret in all of politics.
Please send me a wedding invitation... send one to the White House as well, I am sure John McCain and Sarah Palin would be happy to attend.


Rubbing Elbows...

Aaron and I went to a Sarah Palin rally today... I'll tell you all about it tomorrow after I calm down from the excitement of MEETING my new best friend! Woo-Hoo!


It's Called Karma...

Well... it took 13 years but OJ Simpson is finally going to jail for murder. Sure, they say it is for armed robbery and kidnapping, but we all know the truth.

The Juice is no longer loose.



Imagine waking up this morning knowing that you have to prove yourself...

Imagine waking up this morning feeling the hate of the media's eyes on your every move...

Imagine waking up this morning with the news constantly badgering you, but turning a blind eye on your opponent...

Imagine waking up this morning knowing that there are people who like you and people who don't, and the ones who don't sure do have big mouths...

Imagine waking up with Americans waiting anxiously to hear from you...

Good Luck Sarah! If you don't have time to get on-line and read my blog today, that is OK. I understand.

Go for it!