Thursday, June 26, 2008

another npr goodie

Now who does this group remind you of? Think way back. Aren't their harmonies stunning?

White Winter Hymnal by Fleet Foxes

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

time to laugh!

I'm sure you'll watch this over and over again.

I particularly enjoyed the corporal cuddling and cat yodeling.

Monday, June 23, 2008

You may be super stinky but I love you!

Wow, today has been rough and it's not even halfway over. The activities I planned today have one by one been deleted due to a cranky 5 year old who does NOT want to clean her room. I was informed that Little T is grounded until her room is clean. Unfortunately that means that Big T and I suffer along with her. Big T has a friend over, however, and I am definitely NOT invited to play with them. Sometimes little girly games do not involve big people. Oh well.

My brother, Scott the Snot, also called with EXCITING but equally devastating news. He currently lives 20 minutes away and I get to see him almost every month. He informed me today that he is moving to Arizona. I definitely won't get to see him every month once he moves. I may sound choosy when I say this, but it is true. Scott has always been my favorite. Even when he went through the stage of not wanting a little sister tagging around (that lasted waaay too long by the way).

He will not be the first brother I have lost. Greg disappeared in 97'. I haven't heard from him since. Rusty joined the Navy after high school and now lives in Washington. I haven't seen him in almost three years. And of course there is Louis. Louis was not my real brother. Nope, not at all. We met each other while selling shoes at a mall in Springfield, MO. We became instant friends and remained attached at the hip for a couple of years as he went from one bad relationship to another. At one point he asked me quite seriously if I could be his sister. He had previously been a Jehovah's Witness, and because of his sexuality could not maintain contact with any of his siblings. His entire family dropped him like a hot rock when he ever so boldly revealed his true self.

I, of course, would never turn down such an offer! Another brother? What could be cooler? What's even more amazing is how well he got along with all my friends and family. My mom has always understood who my closest friends are. She treated my best friend in high school, Denny, just like she was her own daughter. She did the same for Louis. There isn't a doubt in my mind that Louis and I were meant to be family. Not a single doubt.

Shortly after I moved to the KC area he disappeared. Vanished. POOF! I receieved an email from him several months ago though and he said that he had moved to Florida and was doing fine. I gave him my number, email and home addresses and remain attached to my myspace account, but it has been far too long. I remain concerned, wondering if he is happy, wondering if he's safe and loved. Whenever he went through the worst spells in his previous relationships he grew distant from me. He knew I disapproved of anyone who didn't treat him like the angel he is. I try to stay away from that worry, that he is in another bad relationship, and perhaps that is the reason he hasn't contacted me. Honestly, and sadly enough I secretly hope that he has found an amazing person and is living such a grand life that he has forgotten about me. Why? Because if he is in another bad relationship it would be a terrible reason not to keep in touch.

And so here I am again, facing another loss. I should be good at goodbyes by now, but I am just as bad at them as I was with the first. I know I'll get to see him here and there, and I also understand that he needs to grow and that I need to be patient and supportive and know that this new path is part of the growth.

Oddly enough, before he called with the news I was listening to one of my favorite songs by my favorite artist. As always it made me tear up a little and question whether I hold on too tight to loved ones. When Scott called the lyrics came back to me and I had a few tough minutes. I'm holding my head up high though now and applauding my wonderful yet stinky AND ugly brother on his new journey. I know I've told him this a thousand billion kazillion times but here you go again Scott: I love you!

Here's the song.

Every Minute

by Sara Groves

I am long on staying • I am slow to leave • Especially when it comes to you my friend • You have taught me slow down • And to prop up my feet • It's the fine art of being who I am • • And I can't figure out • Why you want me around • I'm not the smartest person I have ever met • But somehow that doesn't matter • No it never really mattered to you at all • • And at the risk of wearing out my welcome • At the risk of self-discovery • I'll take every moment • And every minute that you'll give me • • And I can think of a time when families all lived together • Four generations in one house • And the table was full of good food • And friends and neighbors • That's not how we like it now • • Cause if you sit at home you're a loser • Couldn't you find anything better to do • Well no I couldn't think of one thing • I would rather waste my time on than sitting here with you • • And at the risk of wearing out my welcome • At the risk of self-discovery • I'll take every moment • And every minute that you'll give me • • And I wish all the people I love the most • Could gather in one place • And know each other and love each other well • • And I wish we could all go camping • And lay beneath the stars • And have nothing to do and stories to tell • We'd sit around the campfire • And we'd make each other laugh remembering when • You're the first one I'm inviting • Always know that you're my friend • • And at the risk of wearing out my welcome • At the risk of self-discovery • I'll take every moment • And every minute that you'll give me • Every moment and every minute that you'll give me • Every moment and every minute that you'll give me • Every minute • •

Sunday, June 22, 2008

needing some sleep

I'm too tired to sleep : (

P.S. Mom I hope to see another post from you soon. I'm sure we all would : )

1. I love... progress.
2. Right now. . . I am tired and incredibly sore.
3. I feel like...a cranky monster.
4. I hate it when... I turn into a cranky monster.
5. I fear... the descent.
6. I’m lonely without... music.
7. I need... sleep.
8. Today I... ran, played tennis, and got a serious talkin’ to from a friend.
9. Tomorrow I’m... playing tennis, running errands, swimming, playing princess monopoly at least 40x and going to the dreaded yoga class.
10. I just... want some solid peace from my mind and all the itty bitty whiners.
11. I want to meet... Dave Eggers. Please?
12. I’m hungry for... nothing. I just ate.
13. I love it when... Robert demands that I do something relaxing. I pretend to secretly hate it, but it’s really cute to see him pointing fingers and breaking out the bubble bath.
14. I’m afraid of... um see 5
15. I’m listening to... the whirs of computers.
16. I’m wearing...
17. I wish I was in... a place that is cold.
18. I’m craving... sleep.
19. I want to get... a new racquet.
20. I can... run farther now.
21. I can’t... serve super good.
22. I have... very little patience.
23. I haven’t... got a lot of energy.
24. It makes me nervous to... say no.
25. My Mom thinks I’m... funny.
26. My Dad thinks I’m... always wrong BUT a good driver.
27. I think... I am a good person.
28. I’m happy when... I sweat.
29. I’m sad when... I have absolutely nothing to do.
30. I like eating... my food mixed.
31. I hate eating... without making sure everything is clean.
32. I love watching... ice road truckers.
33. I love listening to... the woods speak out in the country.
34. I like playing... tripoly
35. I hate waking up to... an obnoxious song.
36. I can see... success right around the corner.
37. I’m glad that... I have r.
38. I’m disappointed that... the weekend is over.
39. I look like... I’m tired…
40. I wish I looked like... I was a little more excited. Oh well maybe tomorrow.

Friday, June 20, 2008

waving white flag

So you may be asking what we do all day here.

First, we start the day off with princess cereal.
Followed by the library/park/reading/walking the pups
swimming and princess monopoly are musts!
And when we have a spare moment we usually have tickle wars.

Today Robert joined the fun!


I know I know. No rough housing inside. But hey it's part of my package deal.


This is two seconds before little T stuck her foot in my nose. Surrender was my only option after that.


Monday, June 16, 2008

grab some popcorn!

In the past few weeks I have watched more movies (a whopping total of 3) than I have in the past year.

Rush Hour 3: good. The Eiffel Tower fight scene was a little stupid.

P.S. I Love You: Super Duper. I was worried that this was going to be too chick flick for me. Romantic movies are usually lame to the max. When I found out that her husband actually dies I was intrigued. Not to sound morbid or anything, but death meant that there would be little or no making out (wrong but both Iove interests were pretty hot). PLUS it was a very inspirational movie with a Kathy Bates twist. Kathy Bates, by the way, is one of my favorite actresses. She is brilliant.

Charlie Wilson’s War: FANTASTIC! The actor who played Gust, Philip Seymour Hoffman, is officially my new favorite actor. Watching him and Tom Hanks banter, especially in the scene where he bugged Hanks’ whiskey, is one of the best theatrical performances I have ever seen. I can honestly say that after watching this movie it is a must see. If there are only two movies you watch in your lifetime let it be this one and A River Runs Through It.

As for an update on my life: I am still sleeping (kind of), breathing (most of the time) and eating (mostly cereal). That is all. The rest is a blur that only clears when there is A. no chlorine in my eyes or B. when my racquet meets tennis ball flesh.

Friday, June 13, 2008

ma ma se ma ma sa

Yesterday Robert watched the girls for a couple hours while I went and played tennis. Towards the end of my match they came and watched me play. Where did they go and what did they do while they were with Robert? Well. . . He took them out for ice cream AND also to Best Buy. Best Buy???? Well, there is a cd that I have been wanting for a long time, and while they were out they got it for me! How cool is that? When I took the girls home later I told them I was going to play my new cd and they BOOED me! But I played it anyway, and it turns out that they knew one of the songs. Well. . . After all that booing guess what we have been listening too over and over again today? You guessed it! The new cd! Even though they only like that one song it is still an awesome song so I am not complaining.

One listen and you'll be hooked!

On a completely different note I took them to the mall this morning to return a swimsuit I bought in Tucson. Just like my mom I ended up crying during our swimsuit shopping experience because nothing fit! We have opposite problems. She's an upside down pear and I'm a right side up pear. Swimsuit shopping for pears is an exhausting process. I went through about 20 swimsuits in Tucson before finally deciding on one. When I got home, however, it was too big. SO today, with two HYPER little girls, I decided to go back to dillards to look just one more time. I found 4 swimsuits, tried them all on, AND two fit perfectly. It was the first time I had trouble deciding WHICH swimsuit to buy. I finally let the girls decide for me. So, next year there is going to be no tears when I go swimsuit shopping!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

branching out

We have been spared from the greatest wrath of the storms that have hit in the past few weeks. Robert is struggling to keep the basement dry, but that is tiny when compared to the damage others have had to face. As I looked out the window at our backyard yesterday I noticed that there was just a little more sky to see. Unfortunately the tree that was covering up the sky is now an amputee.


On an entirely different note I have a poem to share. This will not be the last you hear of this poet.

The End and the Beginning
By Wisława Szymborska

After every war
someone has to tidy up.
Things won't pick
themselves up, after all.

Someone has to shove
the rubble to the roadsides
so the carts loaded with corpses
can get by.

Someone has to trudge
through sludge and ashes,
through the sofa springs,
the shards of glass,
the bloody rags.

Someone has to lug the post
to prop the wall,
someone has to glaze the window,
set the door in its frame.

No sound bites, no photo opportunities,
and it takes years.
All the cameras have gone
to other wars.

The bridges need to be rebuilt,
the railroad stations, too.
Shirtsleeves will be rolled
to shreds.

Someone, broom in hand,
still remembers how it was.
Someone else listens, nodding
his unshattered head.
But others are bound to be bustling nearby
who'll find all that
a little boring.

From time to time someone still must
dig up a rusted argument
from underneath a bush
and haul it off to the dump.

Those who knew
what this was all about
must make way for those
who know little.
And less than that.
And at last nothing less than nothing.

Someone has to lie there
in the grass that covers up
the causes and effects
with a cornstalk in his teeth,
gawking at clouds.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

tiaras = cake and subs

First week down.

On the first day the girls met me halfway down the road hollering like all get out. They were EXCITED. By Friday I was not only walking into a quiet house, I was also greeted by only one kiddo and she was passed out in her princess cereal. The other kiddo, Tiffany, was at a friend’s house for the day. That meant that the remaining kiddo, Taylor, and I had to prepare for Robert’s birthday all by ourselves. Fortunately there is a wonderful girly who lives next door to the girls and tags along with us throughout the summer. She is not only the best behaved kid I have ever met, she also keeps the girls entertained when I run out of energy and ideas. During the week we had gone shopping for Robert’s birthday and the girls picked out everything, from decorations to the cake. They decided on balloons and tiaras. For the cake they originally wanted an all pink one with every square inch filled with those nasty sugary candy clowns, but I sort of, kind of, intervened. I could barely see Robert in a tiara. Eating a pink cake with clowns was crossing the line. That is how the cake became blue. The clowns were a different story : ) When the girls weren’t looking I threw a few away. Shhh don’t tell! The girls and I managed to sneak over to the house, kick out the boys, make a cake (they did most of the work), and decorate in only a couple of hours. Then we went to Robert’s favorite sub shop, grabbed some grub and hurried back home. When the boys showed up they were pleasantly surprised. They even wore the tiaras. I think they understood that tiaras = cake and subs : )

As for next week, I say bring it on!

Sunday, June 01, 2008


Well I am officially back. I feel exhausted, overwhelmed and nervous as all get out. I start the nanny thing tomorrow, and instead of 7:30-2:00 I will be there 7:30-5:30. I love the girls more than anything, but it’s going to be rough to fill 10 hours. It can’t be all fun and games like last year. Quiet time will have to be enforced. Swimming will be a crutch I hate to lean on, but if it works then why knock it? I came home to a hairy home. I can’t say that it is dirty, because Robert did a fairly nice job of tidying while I was gone. What he failed to understand is that I normally sweep and spot mop every other day. I also have a mountain of laundry to do. Robert only did what he had to do in order to get by, which is exactly what I asked him to do, but now that I look at the 10 or so loads that I need to do I wonder if I should have broke down and let him do more. I also have been feeling insanely tired and am having a difficult time transitioning back to my sugar free diet. I bought a twix bar while in Hermann and am back to my old ways of pinching off pieces every now and then for a quick fix. I need to chuck the rest and move on. I managed to find time for tennis yesterday and today, and as much as I dreaded heading into the humidity, I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I instantly found my groove, which has never happened after a week of not playing, and I kicked everyone’s butt. It was a wonderful rush, but unfortunately I now feel absolutely drained. I still have three dogs to wash today. I am trying not to get stressed out or bossy or so irritated that I slip and cuss someone out, but I’m in a little over my head. Last night I finally let go and had a good cry about numerous things that are weighing me down. A great part of my faith involves letting go of things I have no control over. Interestingly enough I learned this valuable lesson from a few wonderful recovering alcoholics whom I shall not name. I think I was able to let go of a few things last night. There are a few things that are still knotted up tightly inside. Robert asked me to share memories of my grandma. I surprised even myself when I said, “no, they are mine”. I think that you can give away so much of yourself sometimes that you have absolutely nothing left that is sacred and private. As much as I love Robert I sometimes feel like he wants me to lay my soul out on the table and show him all the tiny compartments that contain my secrets. I think people misunderstand love. They think that it’s the completion of themselves, an answer to some mysterious riddle, or a combining of two selves. Well I’ve got news for you. Two people trying to interweave their lives is not as powerful as two people who separately agree on something. Unity doesn’t take two people and combine them into one big sticky mess. It joins two separate people in a way that illuminates how they individually work together.

I’m going to change the subject. Watch! I ended up getting home from Tucson at 1 AM on Wednesday. Robert and I left soon after that to the secret location, Hermann MO. Somehow that little sneak knew how much I wanted to go there. Before we left he took me to my favorite restaurant (well now my second favorite, but that’s another story). The place is called Blue Koi and it makes fantastic dumplings and crispy tofu. And yes, it has ‘awesome sauce’. After we ate we hopped on a train and took a 4 hour train ride (my first!) to Hermann. We walked to the Inn, got the keys and explored the town until dark. When we got to our suite we were exhausted so we didn’t take any pictures, but let me tell you it was the most beautiful place I have ever stayed in. It was a nationally historic building with a sitting room, kitchenette, tiny bathroom and most importantly, a Jacuzzi. The place was well equipped with candles, romantic cds, champagne glasses, extra quilts, fresh made brownies etc. It was unbelievably comfortable, friendly and romantic. We woke up to a wonderful breakfast made by the owner’s son. He was one of those hot buff guys (think of a bald Mario Lopez). He talked about his previous job before this one, wrestling, yep you heard me right, and said that he was taking care of the Inn while his father underwent radiation treatments. I admit I was a little intimidated by this fellow, his name was Brent, until he mentioned that he had been struggling to leash train his cat. That broke the ice. Plus he made a mean breakfast, apples and cinnamon French toast with a yogurt parfait. He also remembered his phone conversation with Robert when he was making the reservation. He knew that I drank tea in addition to my food preferences (you all know I am a picky eater). I couldn’t have been more impressed. After breakfast we walked to the river and nearly fell asleep on one of the benches. After that I tried a sugar free milky way coffee (decaf with vanilla, caramel, and chocolate syrup, and milk) at the Kaffee Haus. Next, we decided to tour the Hermanoff winery. It was very beautiful and spooky. I rather enjoyed the cherry wine, but both Robert and I fell in love their sparkling juice. We then rented bikes, stopped at the Stonehill winery to order a couple cases of our favorite. . . sparkling juice. We also ate a lovely lunch there. Robert ordered a German meal that I can’t remember to save my life. I wonder why ; ) After lunch we rode our bikes to the park and acted like two four year olds, ok well maybe two drunk four year olds. No, seriously we didn’t drink that much. I’ve never ever felt any kind of buzz from any alcoholic beverage I’ve drank. Seriously. We walked through a few of the shops before they closed (shop hours are 10-4 there). After we saw the town Brent drove us to the Swiss sausage shop (Too far away on a teeny tiny road for bikes). Robert fell in love with their apple cinnamon and cherry sausages. We ate an early supper at a wings place and went back to watch a movie; I think it was one of the Die Hard movies. I then spent about 6 hours in the Jacuzzi with some bubbly we had gotten during the day.

As I was coming home from Tucson I thought to myself, what does that little buggar have planned (He kept it a secret until we left), that could possibly compete with seeing my mom and grandma. Well, even though it was a quick trip it definitely ranks right up there with Tucson.

Tucson, by the way, was super freaking totally kick ass amazing awesome. Even though there was that painful rash that prevented me from wearing any of the cute things I brought with me, it still kicked ass. How does that work you may ask. Well, first of all I got to see my mom and grandma, who are the two very best ladies I know. We also went EVERYWHERE. Bisbee, the botanical gardens, 4th street, Saguaro East, the Desert Museum etc. I also ate at some of the best places I’ve eaten. One of them, Lovin’ Spoonfuls, was a vegan paradise with fantastic mock meats and soy brownies and shakes that knocked my socks off. They even served my food to me in the ‘unfriendly’ (a term used for a place that isn’t vegan/vegetarian friendly) place next door, because Josh and Robert decided to eat there. I also got to play tennis quite a few times with some locals who kicked my butt all over the place. The tennis facility, where I played, Randolph, was beautiful. Although it’s outside they still charge folks to play. The ‘free’ places around the RV park where I stayed were in red zones, which are crime infested. It was an awesome vacation.
Here are two websites to check out. I don’t know the fancy way to do this : )

Lovin’ Spoonfuls:
Captain Wohlt Inn: Be sure to check out their pictures!
I have a slide show from my Hermann vacation BUT you have to watch it with a sense of humor! At one point during the trip I realized that I needed to shave my legs. . . Well you’ll see. It was a funny moment.