Friday, July 31, 2009

A New Baby (of the electronic sort)

I know that I have mentioned my computer troubles in the past. It's not terribly surprising considering the age of my dear old laptop. Seven years old!! Still, in the past seven years the old gal has given me a lot of support.

Being who I am and being from Scottish/Lutheran stock - I couldn't bring myself to buy a new computer while the old one still did most of the things I needed. So, I suffered. And suffered beautifully if I do say so myself. We're good at that where I come from. And Della (my old Dell)stayed. She did what she could but never surprised me by reverting back to her old reliable ways.

I could have kept on using Della but several things lead to her demise. Oh sure, she was limping along - but in the end she wouldn't allow me to access Facebook. And that was the death knell.

Not that Facebook is so terribly important to me - but the fact that the whole system crashed every time I opened it? Combined with the fact that I couldn't use gmail, couldn't access a few job-search sites, and never knew if the old girl would start up again? Recipe for a new sheriff in town, if you ask me.

Yesterday, after yet another crash, I finally got back online, went to Consumer Reports and picked out my new baby. Fortunately for me, the local Best Buy had her in stock! Last night I hooked up Sheba the Toshiba and flew all over the internet. I'm very happy with the new addition to the family.

A friend recently commented that it would be a good thing for my wallet when Muffin returned home. I agree. No more shopping for me... At least, not until next month!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Random Musings...

A title inspired by some recent happy news. It's a good thing.

Anyway, here are some Random Musings for Thursday:

1. Saw Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince yesterday. I liked it. I know it's not action filled, but I still liked it. Perhaps I'm just blind to all things HP, but in my defense, I haven't read the book since it was published so the movie was still entertaining. Also, is it me or is Draco turning into a little hottie? Sacrilege? You betcha!

2. My Mom is Awesome. She sent me the aforementioned book as well as the previous one in the series while I was on two different deployments. She always packed the best care packages. I would receive one, run to my state room and relish every item. From socks to rice cakes to fancy smelling bath accessories to Harry Potter books. She always surprised me with things that I didn't even know I wanted. Love you Mama!!

3. Speaking of HP... watching the movie and reading the books reminds me painfully of my own Hermione Granger tendencies. Oh, I was nothing like that in grades 1-12 or even in my first attempt at my undergraduate degree. However. When I went back to college for my second attempt at a bachelor's degree? I was hopelessly addicted to getting the right answer and showing the professors how much I was paying attention and doing the work. If you have ever seen the movie where Ms. Granger is all "Ooo,Ooo!" while raising her hand? Yeah, that was me. Circa, 2000. I'm a dork.

4. Speaking of my undergraduate degree... it took me nine years to complete. Nine. Freaking. Years. Such a ridiculous time period prompted my shipmates on USS First Ship to nick-name me "Doc." Because they felt that after all that time I should have a stinking doctorate. Now, honestly - doesn't a doctorate take a little longer than nine years? Hmph. They should have called me "Master" for a graduate degree instead. In fact, I kind of like that term... Master. Hmmm... awesome.

5. Along that particular thought train... I believe that I might, just might, use the word Awesome too much. It seems to be a word that I use in nearly every post or comment. In my defense - I have, at least, graduated from my preferred term "Word" which I used throughout high school and even college. I like to be succinct in my terms of appreciation. In the late 80's and early 90's "word" was an easy way to do just that. Then, during the grunge era, I upgraded to "awesome." Now, I'm just woefully out of touch with the times.

6. Hmmm, did I mention that I love words? Love them. In fact, I think I could have been a philologist (ha! look that one up!). I love being able to use just the right combination of words to express what I am trying to communicate. It literally pains me to see how our society is bastardizing their word choices and abbreviating even the smallest of contractions. Yes, I'm guilty of it too - but I vow to read to my daughter and instill in her the attraction of a diverse vocabulary.

(Um, please note that the subtitle says "textual" not "sexual" - I had to clarify that point for myself. Seemed a little unclear. *cough*)

7. Not only do I love words for communication purposes, but I love them in book form. I love to read. Love, love, love books. I like reading "cozy" mysteries, sci-fi, fantasy, historical classics (not so much modern classics) the occasional smutty romance and anything I see at the library that has an interesting cover. Cover art is CRUCIAL! If it sucks, I automatically assume the book sucks too. Because I'm shallow that way.

8. My love of the written word also extends to audio books. I swear, if it hadn't been for audio books I don't know how I would have survived the last five years. An hour commute - each way! I managed to make my way through a few on the Top 100 Books list and am dubious as to their judging criteria. War and Peace? Hated it! Now, Mr. Darcy Takes A Wife (a book NOT included on the top 100) LOVED IT! Loved every steaming moment. whew!

9. Now, that being said - if you happen to like sci-fi/fantasy with a whopping dose of smut? I suggest checking this lady out: Christine Feehan. She is very entertaining. Especially for those of us without a significant other. *ahem*

10. Finally... my movie tastes. They run toward the historical dramas (love the costumes!) sci-fi/fantasy (no, really?) mysteries and anime. My netflix queue currently sports a wide range of BBC mysteries and anime with a smattering of Japanese classics (Akira Kurosawa!) as well as a few American/English Classics (Alfred Hitchcock!). I love anything that is based on dialog. To me, a witty conversation is more entertaining than explosions. Also, I hate Will Ferrell. And anything like his work. There is a decided dearth of comedy in my queue. My brother claims that I am a comedy snob. Can I help it if my mind was set on Monty Python twenty years ago? I think not!

So. That's a little randomness about me. Hope it wasn't too off-putting! Please forgive my lack in comedy taste - it's in the same vein as my lack of horror taste. After seeing The Exorcist I have never felt the need to see another horror movie as long as I live.

The End!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Wordy Wednesday - More Clouds!

Take a guess...

Here's another vantage... Figured it out yet?

Yeah, I know... Clouds can be confusing. However! I'm going to go ahead and tell you what I thought when I saw these particular formations last week!

Aslan (from the Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe)! And... A Shark! Which, honestly if you pit Aslan against a silly little shark - well, we should not be surprised that he turned out on top. Right?

I love how the moon is his eye in this picture...

grrr... fierce shark!

Lions and sharks over suburbia!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

An Award!! Yay, Bling!

I know it happened last week... And I'm lame because it took me so long to re-post - HOWEVER! Both Bev and Amber D. were kind enough to give me this awesome award:

Here's the hard part... I'm supposed to tag 15 bloggers and brighten up their day! Holy cow!

It's so hard to choose! I'm gonna list some of my favorites as well as a few newer blogs that I've started following because I think you need to take a look at how AWESOME they are! Here we go!

1. Breedale from Perpetually Changing. She's a great friend of mine, an adamant vegan, an English professor AND has recently welcomed a new baby girl into her family! Yay Baby J! Can't wait to meet you! Your mom is incredible!

2. Babe from Babe in Babeland. She is hip, she's cool and her new baby girl is absolutely precious! Check her out!

3. JoBart from Barbara's 365. She's a sistah from across the pond! Her two lovely children are picture perfect! Also, I just love reading her English turns of phrase. Totally Awesome.

4. Kris from Blah, blah, blah. She is a hometown girl (meaning Hampton Roads) and has a sweet blog about her very interesting life (moved back from ALASKA!) - go and see!

5. Tina from Hubby, Boys & Bully ... Oh Wine! She has so many funny posts - I love going over there for a laugh! You should too!

6. Libby from Libby Logic. She is a newscaster who has also recently welcomed a new baby girl into her home! After a very long wait! Congrats!

7. Madame Queen from The Madame Queen. You may remember her from the past... But she's BAA-ACK! And promises lots of fun posts! Can't wait!

8. Maria from Mommy Maria. I discovered her on Twitter! She is blogging about family and her weight loss journey. I am so proud of her courage - I look forward to reading more about it!

9. Samantha from Samanthics. Recently started following her - she has some incredible recipes! Holla - Deviled Eggs! Yum! Can't wait to see more!

10. 1Blueshi1 from Stay At Home Mom Going Quickly Insane. She has been going through a lot lately - no longer stay at home mom and having computer issues. But she is so funny! Go ahead and check her out!

11. KrimmyK from The Official Blog Of Krimsin. Literally JUST started reading her blog - but it is so funny - and I LOVE her layout. Can't wait to read more!

12. Kate from The Sawyers Five. She has an awesome blog with LOADS of incredible pictures - her family is gorgeous! Go and check them out!

13. Travellinbaen from - you guessed it! - Travellinbaen! Such a great blog for so many reasons. Football, philosophy, and so much more! Love it!

And my final two? It's a Mom and Daughter combo!

14. Hokgardner from The days are JUST packed! She's a mom of four little ones and she is so much fun. Runner, Mother, Daughter - in my opinion, she balances life beautifully! Check her out!

15. Knittergran from As the Spirit Moves Me. She recently had all of Hokgardner's family for a visit as well as completed a lovely lace project! She is The Woman!

Wow! That was a lot of linking! Enjoy, you guys! Love your stuff!

Monday, July 27, 2009

One Hot Mess

Last Thursday I was excited to go to a job fair in Raleigh, NC sponsored by a veteran's hiring service (which is awesome and I am in no way criticizing). I supposed I had pegged too many hopes on the event for it to actually bear fruit. In fact it was somewhat of a disappointment.

During the week, my sainted patient mother helped me to put together the perfect "job fair" ensemble. It included an apple green, stretchy, button down blouse, some navy "booty" pants, a perfect set of necklace and earrings (appropriately chunky to balance the severe look of the blouse and pants) as well as my own pair of rocking brown faux snake-skin heels (bought quite a while ago but properly blogged). I felt as though I were ready to take on corporate America!

Thursday dawned warm and sticky but I was optimistic about the endeavour and strove to maintain a positive attitude - despite my lack of job fair experience and the weather. As I drove to Raleigh, I contemplated my choice in shoes. After all, it had been literally YEARS since I had worn heels for any length of time. Still, they were hot and I felt they would give me good luck.

The job fair was in the clubhouse of the NC State Wolfpack stadium. Kind of an odd choice, but whatever... When I got out of the car my clothes immediately stuck to me like glue. It was over 90 degrees and probably 100% humidity. My sassy hairstyle surrendered to the damp and immediately became limp and lifeless. My cute clingy shirt shortly sported moist areas and my pants - well, let's just say I didn't know I could sweat in so many diverse places.

All of my cracks and crevices were wet. And not in a good way. In short - I was a Hot Mess.

Determined to follow through, I stood, sweltering, in one line to register and many lines around the booths. Of the 25 vendors, seven were from education institutions trying to encourage further education. Which is great! But not what I was there for. Five booths were "service" related and offered veteran assistance and stuff - but not jobs. The remaining 13 were pretty specialized in the type of employees they were seeking. Sadly, I was told by most recruiters that they were looking for more "technical" types and not an MBA-sporting hot mess seeking a job in management or logistics.


Still, I picked up some great information and intend to actively search their job openings because hey - they came to a job fair sponsored by a veteran's hiring sevice! They must be cool with hiring veterans, right? The fact that they didn't actively recruit me was because they didn't have a job that would utilize my particular skill sets - right? It's not that I gave a horrible first impression is it?


Needless to say, I came back to my parent's house pretty discouraged. And Friday morning? My legs were killing me! I hobbled around their house like I had just recently experienced a bout of wild drunken sex. I suppose they had seen this particular stagger from me plenty of times before - because they didn't bat an eye.

(insert totally fictional conversation that didn't really happen...but could have...)

Me: "Jesus! My legs are killing me!"

Mom: "Really, honey? There's some aspirin in the medicine cabinet. Now do you want scrambled eggs for breakfast or are you still on that diet."

(God, I love my parents - they are so non-plussed)


The culprit? My awesome mile high 2 inch heels. Damn, looking good is painful. But at least my feet pulled it off. Can they interview my feet?

I wore khaki polyester for seven years and yet, new fangled office attire is beyond me!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sunday Classics - Disney/Barbie Style

This past week I bought my daughter Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus DVD for a mere $5.00 at Target. Little did I know what a profound impact it would make to her life. This is a little girl who LOVES all things "pony" and a mythical pony is the best.

The soundtrack of the movie is based on Beethoven's 6th Symphony - The Pastoral. Very lovely - and also one of the features in Disney's Fantasia. There are many awesome moments in that film, but my favorite was the one with the centaurs and pegasus. As it happens, those scenes were also set to Beethoven's 6th Symphony.

Here is an excerpt from Fantasia - the part with the pegasus - for my Muffin...

And here is the excerpt with Bacchus (God of Wine) and the centaurs. For me. :)

Gotta love the wine. Enjoy!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Saturday Fun

Muffin is going to see her dad today. While this does pain me - I usually take the opportunity, during my Muffin-less time, to have a little fun. This week - I'm gonna see this:

And I'm totally fine with being labeled as a big. fat. dork. I LOVE this series! Sue me! My Mama sent me this book when I was on deployment and I absolutely savored it! It was one of the few pleasures I had at the time. I loved it.

Thanks Mama - you're the best! Can't wait to see the movie and can't wait to take you with me! psst... Don't tell Dad! :)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wordy Wednesday - Swimming!

I signed Muffin up for two weeks of swim lessons three weeks ago and she finished them last Thursday. Day one was very, very traumatic. She kicked, she screamed, she did her level best to injure her instructor but he was kind, patient and dragged her in the water anyway. Where she screamed. At the top of her lungs. In an indoor pool area. My ears are still ringing...

Needless to say I was completely surprised! This is her third summer of swim lessons and she's never had any trouble before! Sure, she doesn't like to get her face wet - but most kids strive to hold their heads out of the water. Why was she acting as though she was afflicted with aqua-phobia?

After the first lesson the head instructor came over to her little group, took her aside and played with her in the baby area. Muffin was fine, she enjoyed that, she liked standing up in knee-high water. I went out to see how she was doing and the head instructor said that Muffin had a major case of F. E. A. R. and wondered how that came about. I was no help - I said that she had taken swim lessons two summers before and has always enjoyed the water. I promised to work with her.

We went to swim lessons every morning and every afternoon we went to the outdoor pool for some fun. Muffin played in the baby pool a little and then got her confidence up to come with me in the big pool. She was cautious at first but after she discovered the joy of "jump to Mama" I could hardly keep up with her. First she needed me to hold her hands, then she wanted me to just catch her, finally she was jumping on her own and loving it.

Needless to say, the swim lessons got better as well. Though she always insisted that instructor hold on to her, when the other little girls where swimming with just a floaty and a noodle, she was confident in her "kicks and scoops" and happily splashed through the water.

At the final lesson the instructor took the little girls down to the deep area (5 feet) to test their mettle. The other four were able to swim without a floaty on their back or noodle under their arms. Muffin left off the floaty, kept the noodle and let go of the instructor's hands saying "I can do it by myself!" It literally brought tears to my eyes.

At the graduation the instructor passed out the test results. The other four girls graduated to the next level. Finally he gave me Muffin's booklet and said "I remember last Monday when Muffin cried and was so afraid. To hear her say "I can do it by myself!" today made me want to cry. I am so proud of her!" All the other parents (who had seen her progress and sympathized with me) clapped and Muffin beamed.

She didn't graduate to the next level, but I signed her up for two more weeks starting August 3rd and know that she will "instruct" her little classmates and pass with flying colors. I'm so proud of you little girl! You've come a long way and I'm glad to see you turning into a little fish!

Way to go Muffin! I love you, Sweet Girl!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

With A Final F-U

Today I went back to work for a completely unnecessary "turn-over" with my relief. Basically, a giant waste of time. But, of course - I knew that going in, didn't I? However, there were a few little loose ends I needed to tie up before a 2pm appointment with the base personnel department so I thought the trip may turn out to be somewhat useful.

I am an optimistic fool.

I got there at 8:15am and my relief wasn't in the office. He was still cleaning up from a visit to they gym. So, I twiddled my thumbs and made small talk until he showed up. Then, for about 45 min I went over everything that he already knew about and swapped sea stories. Finally I said that I wanted to go see if my old boss was in yet. She wasn't. She was out sick. So, we chattered with the ladies in that office for another half hour.

At that point I decided to visit the in-house personnel office to find out about my final fitness report and departing award. Neither were ready - AND they have had SIX WEEKS to get it together! Knowing that today was my last day! ARGH!

The Personnel Officer said that both were upstairs in the Command Office waiting for either the Chief of Staff or the Commandant's action. He said he would scoot up there and see what was going on and oh-by-the-way he really wanted to go home by 11:30am.

Really? BECAUSE I WANTED TO BE HOME ALL DAY! Geez! Turns out my fitness report had been sitting on the Commandant's desk since June 10th! WTF?!? And my award? Well, they just plain dropped the ball on that one. The Personnel Officer said he'd come out to the warehouse and let us know what was going on after he saw the Chief of Staff. That was at 9:30 AM.

Back at the warehouse, everyone goes about their jobs and I sit in a chair. FOR TWO HOURS! Finally, at 11:20 the Personnel Officer comes in and says that the COS wants to present my award at 11:30 (Guess you're not leaving at 11:30) so we all scuttle back to the main building and up to the command office. There, the COS launches into a 15 minute lecture of how awesome he is and how the college is awesome and oh yeah, I'm kinda awesome too.

Then the award is presented - and it's a downgrade from what I had put myself in for, but whatever. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised. The COS asked me to say a few words so I say something like this:

"I've seen a lot of changes in my time here and met a few good people. I hope you all help out my relief." The. Fucking. End.

Then, the Commandant's aide says the Commandant won't have my fitness report ready until after 1pm. Fine, whatever - I'm going to lunch. I come back, get my fitness report (from the Senior Navy Rep - not the Commandant) and leave. Never to return.

You know, several people asked me today if I would be coming back - for lunch or whatever. Three guesses what my response was.

The first two don't count.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sunday Classics - Satie's Gymnopedie #2 & #3

I know - two in one week! #2 doesn't get much play time in this house but #3 is especially lovely and haunting. Particularly when you play it back to back with #1 (from last week).

I first heard #1 on a mix-tape from my first love. #3 was introduced to me via my daughter's bedtime music CD. I remember hearing it and thinking how lovely it was. I suppose it is a little more haunting and melodramatic - but that's how we roll in these parts!

#2 was a surprise - it wasn't on any other music compilation I owned. I just stumbled across it and, of course, was delighted.

Here they are - #2 and #3 of Satie's Gymnopedie collection.

Enjoy! That finishes off this trio. Next week - something new!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Saturday Funnies

I am blatantly stealing this one from Samsmama because I KNOW my younger sister is going to DIE when she sees it.

It's the original Star Wars trilogy summed up by a person who has never actually seen all three movies. Which, in my book, is a complete travesty.

Lil Sis and I used to watch The Trilogy over and over on our pirated VHS copies all. summer. long. It was right up there with James Bond, Monkey's re-runs and Scooby Doo. We're talking serious. I remember playing with the next-door-neighbor's kids and all of us girls wanting to be Princess Leia. Since I was the biggest oldest I won. HA! Everyone else had to be her mythical sisters. Bwahh ha ha ha...

Childhood - isn't it grand!

Anyhoo - without further ado:

Whew - don't mind me. I'm just wiping the tears from my eyes. Thanks Samsmama!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Cloud Post - Part II

The Cloud Picture. Wow. I actually took this picture and was thinking something completely innocent.

Like this commenter...

Now, several of you saw a lady with her bottom in the air. And, yeah - I see that too. Now!

Someone saw butt cheeks - OK... I can see that...

Someone saw boobs... Mmm Hmmm, yes, could be that...

Someone else saw a manta ray swimming through the sky - lovely!

Finally, someone saw a sombrero. Or a Mr. Potato Head mustache. Or a lady with her bottom in the air. And it could have been all three!

Here is what I saw:

I saw Chinese Dragon flying through the sky! But I sincerely appreciate the insight into your dirty, dirty minds. If I was of the same mind set I might look at the cloud picture below (taken yesterday evening) and see something quite naughty! Right there - in the middle...

Birds of a feather, you know... We all think alike! Hee hee! Apparently the suburbs have some suggestive cloud formations! Who knew!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Cloud Picture

Mommy from the Midwest recently posted a picture of a cloud formation and asked people what they thought. I (of course) mentioned something dirty - but it's a CLOUD for crying out loud! It could be anything!


Yesterday evening I saw this cloud and thought "hey! I could do a post like MFTM! So, as an homage to our beloved Mommy from the Midwest - here is are a couple of pictures of the cloud. What do you see? I'll tell you what I saw! Tomorrow! :)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

Last weekend we went to a family reunion for my Mom's side of the family. It was a great deal of fun and afterwards we were privileged to stay at my Aunt's Friend's house on the Chesapeake bay.

Here are a few pictures of my family waking up with the sunrise over the bay. As you can see, Muffin is a little sleepy - but it's nothing a little thumb, blanket and pony couldn't cure.

Sweet girl, relaxing morning, gorgeous sunrise. Ahhh, perfect.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

For Those Of You Who Think I'm Brave

I'm SOOOOO not brave at all.

Nope, not one little bit. I mean, I do what I have to do when it's required of me but on the whole I'm a pussy. Yep. A big fat pussy.

So, I was amused and surprised that several people thought I'd actually taken that picture of the Terrible Monster (aka centipede) I blogged about last week. FOR REAL?!?! There is no way on God's Green Earth I would have had the presence of mind, much less the balls to get my camera and get close to this creature.

Hellz no. I googled that image. And I'm 'fessing up.

Here's how that scenario went down: I saw The Creature. I froze. I kept a steady eye on it while I slowly lifted my feet up into the couch. And I watched it make it's way across the floor and into the fireplace. Then, I sat. Frozen. For about twenty minutes afterwards.

Once I had determined an escape route acceptable amount of time had elapsed - I fled. That's right. I ran up the stairs. I didn't go for the bug spray or any sort of heavy object to smush the thing. I ran away.

I'm like Brave, Brave, Brave Sir Robin in Monty Python's Holy Grail.

I bravely turned my tail and fled.

But thanks for all of your kind thoughts and wishes. If I were braver, maybe I would have done something more worthy of your praise. As it was - I was pretty much a detriment to my sex. Yeah, I'm that girl. The one who needs someone with testicles to smash the bug. Sorry Muffin! Guess we'll just have to hope the nasty creatures don't like us! 'Cause Mommy isn't going to be much help - unless baseball bats and bug spray can do the job. And since we don't have either at the moment, I guess we're just living on a prayer.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Skittles Commercial

For some reason this Skittles commercial really slays me. I was telling my younger sister about it last week and since then it seems like I've seen it five hundred times.

It's the part where the friend on the couch is confessing to eating two - maybe three of the skittles in the hourglass that kills me. Here you go Lil Sis - just for you:

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Sunday Classics - Satie's Gymnopedie #1

This is a beautiful piece that you are probably familiar with - even if you've never heard the name. I know it's on a couple of my "relaxing classics" cds and on at least one of Muffin's "bed time music" cds. It's so lovely and mellow. There are several versions - I'm posting the orchestral version, but you may have heard the piano version or the guitar version. It's the melody that is important, but I love the orchestral version for all of the harmony.

I was introduced to this song on a mix-tape that was given to me by my first true love. My family and his had been friends since we were very little but he was about five years older than me and therefore we never spent much time together. Then, the summer when I was 15 and he had just turned 21 we were both life guards together at the local country club.

We had similar taste in music and, of course, the family connection - so we got along really well. Sunday mornings were my favorite. We always opened the pool together because everyone else was in church. Then, because everyone else was in church, we spent about two hours listening to music and talking about the world we live in, and life in general.

He introduced me to Depeche Mode as well as other moody music and I fell for him. Heart and Soul. Though he started dating a woman five years older than him, I harbored a a huge crush that I'm pretty sure everyone knew about. We remained friends, even when I moved away. We used to write letters and one time he sent me a mix-tape with some songs that he thought I would like. This was one of them.

We've lost touch, but I'll always carry a torch for my first and strongest summer love. Maybe one day I'll write more about it. It was special, he was special and because of that this music will always have a special place in my heart.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Head's Up

You know I love to reply back to comments - right? I almost always really try to comment back via gmail to all of your lovely comments to my blog - or in response to a comment I have made on your blog.

HOWEVER, due to my old computer and God knows what else technical difficulties I am not able to do so. I can not reply back to emails from my gmail account. I can't even compose an email from this account! It. Is. So. Frustrating.

I want to be able to immediately reply back to your comments, but alas I can not. I want to respond and engage - and I will try! I will forward comments to another account and reply from there. So, don't be surprised if you hear from me in a different way. Not psychic, no - just another email account.

Now I'm going to get ready to go to the YMCA and work out for the first time in who-knows-how-long. Muffin is pretty excited about playing in the childwatch area and I'm looking forward to... Well, I'm not looking forward to anything about it. Just got to get back on track is all.

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


Have I mentioned how much I love Muffin-age-5? I am enchanted by her precocious pretending. I take pleasure in every little reaction to each new experience. I revel in her delightful conversations. I relish her little "revelations" on life, work and fun.

As I said, I love hearing Muffin pretend. She has lately taken up playing "school" with her stuffed animals and ponies. I can hear her upstairs being quite strict with them. She scolds them for not listening. She instructs them to pay attention. She puts them Time Out. All in all - she is a very stern task master.

Yesterday, on our way to town for some shopping (did I mention Suburbia lacks a Kohl's?) Muffin told me that she had considered being a pony trainer when she grew up but decided, in the end, to be a teacher.

I asked her what kind of teacher she wanted to be and do you know what she said?

"I want to teach people how to behave."

No lie. Upon further inquiry she explained that "people need to be taught how to behave and (most importantly) how to mind their manners" so basically my daughter - The Princess of Righteousness (omg spell check and encarta gave me a hard time on THAT word!) - decided that person needed to be her.

Oh, I giggled to myself while my heart nearly burst with love. Later, while I was wanting to shoot myself in the head we were trying on bathing suits in the Kohl's dressing room, Muffin kept up a non-stop dialog of how good she was doing and how well she was behaving as well as other charming nonsense. Upon leaving the dressing room we met another lady who had also been trying on clothes at the same time. She smiled, shook her head and said "that little girl is absolutely delightful. She truly deserves an ice cream today." Well - of course she does!

That evening we had a little set back. The outdoor pool at the Y was closed - and there was no explanation. Muffin was more than a little sad. She moped all afternoon. I consoled her with a little ice cream for dessert (as per the dressing room lady's instruction). While she was eating her ice cream she offered up a few explainiations as to the how the flavors got to be what they were.

She said that chocolate ice cream must come from Hershey's kisses that had been frozen until they were "nice and soft" and that vanilla ice cream came from vanilla yogurt that had been frozen until it was "nice and soft" and then they were mixed together to make regular old ice cream.

Delightful. And in return for her treat - she offered to cuddle with me. She told me that she thought I was the best person in the world to cuddle with and that she loved me the most.

Which is, of course, what every parent loves to hear. But you want to know what really melted my heart?

I was reading her a book of Birthday Poems for bedtime when I came across one about a little boy that always seem to lose at birthday games. After I finished the poem, Muffin leaned over to me and whispered:

"You know Mama, losing is the learning part."

And that my friends is the wisdom of a five-year-old. I would not be surprised if she was quoting one of her teachers - but still. I love her for it. I love her so much and (nearly) every word that comes out of her mouth amuses and endears me. I know you all have similar stories and I can't wait to read about them. God Bless the Little People!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


Life in suburbia is nice. Nice and quiet. No jet noise, no crazy kids vandalizing my yard, no sound of sirens at all hours of the day and night. Yep, I could get used to this.

One of the things that my friend took care of before she left her house in my care was a call to the exterminator. She was concerned about some ants and since I hate anything with more arms and legs than me - I was totally down with the exterminator dude.

Knowing that, I was surprised to find this little beauty calmly wandering across the living room floor.


I was stunned and a little scared. First of all, I don't know a damn thing about centipedes except that they are fugly and freaky. After looking them up on the web I found that they are a relatively common kind of pest - and that they can bite! Their venom can be very serious for children, the elderly and anyone with a venom allergy. So, it's fugly, freaky and DEADLY!


I will be sleeping with a can of bug spray and a baseball bat. Muffin, you're on your own darling. It's every bug-a-phobe for themselves. (just kidding! - you can have your own can of bug spray) Ok, maybe suburbia isn't quite the paradise I initially thought.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Relaxing Holiday Weekend

Hope you all had a fun Fourth of July! Muffin and I went to the park and pool on Saturday but yesterday it rained all day so we had to stay in. Talk about a quick way to make Mommy and Daughter insane! But I'm getting ahead of myself...

Last week was kind of crazy - I had a lot of loose ends to tie up Navy-wise so every morning Muffin and I commuted from Suffolk to Norfolk. Not a fun drive, but since we left a little after rush-hour every day it wasn't too terrible. By Thursday everything was pretty much done and I was ready to let my hair down. Unfortunately, Thursday morning I woke up with a bad cold. Seems like this bug was just waiting until I let my guard down to do a number on me. Grrr...

I took Dayquil and tried to fend it off as best I could but I know I wasn't a lot of fun to be around. Poor Muffin. At least she still had new movies and toys to play with so she wasn't too terribly bored. Saturday morning I felt a little more human and decided that we would do something fun. So - off to the local park!

Suffolk has a wonderful community park called KidZone that is HUGE! We spent over an hour there and my lovely child got to run some of that energy off. We only left because a little boy that she had been playing with hit her and well, that was that. His dad brought him over to apologize but by that time Muffin was in "the zone" and not feeling like having fun anymore. We left, had lunch and a nap.

After the nap I put her in her swim suit and we headed up to the YMCA. They were only open until 5:30 but that was plenty of time for us. Muffin played in the baby pool and had a great time. That evening I grilled some cheezy-brats for a traditional 4th of July dinner. :) Then, she slept like a rock! Awesome!

Yesterday it rained all day so we had some enforced togetherness. Thankfully, my friend has a few children's movies that Muffin hasn't seen and that helped to keep her occupied. I spent most of the day going through my pictures from Rome. I know, it's been two months - but I've been busy! And there were almost 1000 pictures!! Kind of daunting. But, now it's done so I'm proud.

Speaking of proud... One of my best friends had her baby on Saturday night! Her husband twittered the whole experience! It was really cool to receive updates on her condition and to learn when the new baby arrived. She was born after 9pm during the fireworks event. They're already calling her their little firecracker. How cute!

Today we got up bright and early for Muffin's swim lessons. She was so excited to go - but when it came to crunch time she Freaked. Out. The poor instructor was having to literally drag her into the pool. She screamed. She cried. She made a complete spectacle of herself. I have no idea where this sudden fear sprang from. One day she is fine - the next she is terrified of sinking.

No matter, we will work through this. I'm taking her to the pool this afternoon to get her more acclimated with deep water. I will keep giving her some private lessons in the hopes that her fear will dissipate. We come from a long line of swimmers and I'm certain that Ms. Muffin will learn to enjoy herself sooner or later.

That's us in a nutshell! I'm looking forward to more lazy summer days (minus the lawn-mowing) and hope everyone else is relaxing as well. I'm having a hard time using my google-reader so if I fall behind - I apologize. I'm always posting on twitter - hope to see you there!

Friday, July 3, 2009

My Little Tapper

Ok, so these pictures were taken over two weeks ago... BUT! I'm posting them now! I've been busy. No excuse really, but there it is.

The first couple are of Muffin at the rehearsal. In these two she is getting ready for their group pictures. As I mentioned to my parents, this ordeal was not unlike herding cats. None of them could stand still for 5 seconds!!

Here she is posing with her dance friend, my co-worker's daughter.

And here are a few of her on her own - backstage the night of the show - in the chaos.

(pooping in the trashcan? Not before the show! lol.)

You go my little tap-dancing Domino. I'm so proud of you and you were marvelous! Congrats on your second recital!!