Wednesday, August 30, 2006

I Would If I Could But I Can't So I Won't

I was all gung ho to write an at least vaguely interesting mid-week post tonight. But now - not so much.

I would tell you about Sweetie and my recent few days of stomach bug-itis. But you really don't need to hear about marathon sleep-fests or the contents/amounts/appearances of anything that came out of anyone's body in any way, shape or form. So I'll spare you.

I could tell you about what a trooper Sweetie is when she's sick. And maybe I will someday. But right now, to do that either feels:
A) like bragging, or
B) ignorant because - I don't know - maybe most toddlers/preschoolers are just as likely to suck it up, deal with it, and move on. So let's not even go there, okay?

I would tell you some pretty funny things Sweetie has said and/or done over the last few days. But I like to save those for my Sweetie Saturdays. So I'll wait.

I could ramble on about the challenges I face dealing with Sweetie when either I alone or both of us together are not feeling well. The troubles I can face, when we're alone together, both needing to get to the bathroom in a timely fashion but neither of us having the strength or physical ability to help the other out so much. But - ugh! - enough with the too much sicky sick sick talk already!

So - I WILL tell you that we're both feeling much better now. It wasn't fun, but it's been worse. And at least it was a quick mover.

'Nuff said.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Mama Monday #28

Theme: Train

All aboard for my train-of-thought take on this week's theme:

Sweetie loves The Train Store (for its train set found in the children's section), but couldn't care less about the train set we got her for Christmas last year.

I love the band Train

I once took a train from Boston to Orlando with my mom and aunt. Fun trip going down, not so fun coming home

Potty training Sweetie went much more smoothly than I thought it would - the second time, anyway

With Hubby's new work schedule and uneven income flow, we're definitely going to have to retrain ourselves to be more financially mindful and for me to learn a new way to keep our finances in order

As a girl, I really wanted to learn how to ride a bicycle. But my disability gives me the disadvantage of very poor balance. So I never graduated from my Strawberry Shortcake 2-wheeler with training wheels

I think I was among the first in my class to get a training bra. And I distinctly remember one bratty boy in particular who thought it was really funny to snap my strap

My wedding dress did not have a long train. And my veil was sweet - attached to a comb tucked in to my updo at the back of my head. I love my wedding dress too - absolutely perfect for me. Off the shoulder, corsetted bodice, all in a creamy Shantung silk. Gorgeous!

There are 2 points along our commute to work where we could be stopped by a train crossing the tracks - one about a mile from our house and the other about 7 miles further. Mostly, though, we're able to miss them

One of my brother's initial's are R.R.S. (Hi, Rob!). He used to write them out like a railroad crossing sign - a large "X" with an "R" on either side (not sure what he did with the "S", though. And not sure if he still does this)

One of my favorite authors is Virgina Woolf. Love that train-of-thought writing style (okay, stream-of-consciousness style, but, basically, it's the same thing)

And finally - Sweetie has been having lots of fun recently with rhyming words. One of her favorites? Moose, Goose.....Caboose!

Now - vamoose!

Choose Your Own Review

Look at me! I'm the Queen of Blog Reviews!

Yes, I got yet another email from another company wondering if I would review their product on my blog. So, in the words of Sweetie, I answered,

Why sure I can!

And anyway, this one was sure to be fun for the whole family.

Choose Your Own Adventure DVD Series: The Abominable Snowman

When I first told Hubby about this review request, he was all for it. He loved the Choose Your Own Adventure books as a kid. So a DVD of the same ilk sounded like lots of fun.

I thought so too. I read my own girly version of CYOA books in my youth. Watching the action play out on the screen would certainly add to the fun.

Plus, since this was an animated cartoon, it looked like something Sweetie would enjoy as well.

Overall, the three of us really did like it. The movie plays along for a little bit, and every once in awhile you get a choice to make. Using the arrows on your DVD remote, you pick the way you want the story to go. What control! Cool!

However, if you choose the "wrong" option, you may be in for a quick and unsatisfying resolution to the story. In fact, that's one negative I have - no matter which choices you make, it always seems like the ending comes too quickly. (Also, as an aside, I had some issues with the main story's plot - like, what exactly happened to the kids' parents and why are they allowed to live by themselves? - But Hubby thinks the storyline came from the original book version of the series, so the filmmakers aren't exactly to blame for that).

The running time on the back of the DVD case says it's 80 minutes. Well, I don't know where that estimation comes from because we watched it, making several different choices, going back, choosing again, etc... and we were done in under an hour. Maybe it's 80 minutes if you go back and exhaust every single option - 11 possible stories in all. But, basically, I felt cheated. All I can think is that it really is made more for the younger set. So, therefore, short little cartoon-length stories is about the right speed. But Hubby and I wanted more.

We think the Choose Your Own Adventure DVD is a great idea. We'd even be interested in seeing more. We just think the stories should be expanded upon, have even more choices, and last a little longer.

Hey, maybe mainstream feature films should look into this? That would be so cool if the audience - based on a majority rules vote - could choose whether the guy gets the girl or whether the psycho killer continues his killing spree or perhaps decides to check himself into the local hospital's Murderer's Rehab Program for a little R&R.

Hmmmmmmm..... Oh sorry.... getting back to the point...

We have yet to watch the behind the scenes documentary on the DVD, but I think we'll do that soon. With voices by William H. Macy, Frankie Muniz and Lacey Chabert to name just a few, it will be interesting to get their take on what went in to making this movie.

Lastly - Sweetie seemed to like this video a lot. She understood the concept and had fun making the decisions about what happened in the story. The story is not too scary for little ones (although older kids might understand it better and have more fun using the remote control themselves to make the choices). And the "Collectible Travel Journal" that accompanied the movie gave her something tangible to hang on to and feel more involved in the adventure.

So if you're up for a fun break from your housework or need something interactive and fun to plop your kids in front of for a little while, choose the Choose Your Own Adventure: Abominable Snowman DVD. Just don't be surprised when they complain that the ending came too quickly or wasn't what they wanted.

But, hey, that's the beauty of it too. Simply back up to the last option and choose, choose again. Have fun!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Sweetie Saturday #22

I can't think of too many "funnies" from this week. But Hubby told me about this encounter he had with Sweetie.

She came into see him in the bathroom and, putting her hands out in front of her, as if she were quieting a crowd, said,

Come on, Daddy. Calm down, take a few deep breaths and stop talking.

Not that he was even saying anything, or riled up at all in the first place. Nonetheless, I guess Sweetie just thought Daddy needed a "chill" reminder, anyway.


Okay, so something really funny happened just now.

Grampy is over this morning, helping Hubby put new windows in our bedroom. We told Sweetie that she should tell Grampy the Too Many Daves story and, in turn, Grampy would tell her the Elephant story (Once there was an elephant, who tried to use the telephant...)

So Sweetie asked Grampy if he had the Elephant story book with him and we explained that he knows the story in his head, just like she knows the Dave story in her head. Okay, then.

Well, Sweetie's being shy this morning and has only been able to get as far as the first few lines of her Dave story. But Grampy thought that was pretty good and agreed to tell his story anyway.

He sat her on his knee and told her the story, all the while Sweetie's smiling with joy.

But then? When Grampy was done, Sweetie sweetly laughed and said to him,

I think that was better in your book instead of your head.

Kids - gotta love their honesty.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

I'm Such A Tease

I don't know about you, but I have the miraculous ability to not feel the pain and discomfort of pretty much any given malady - until it's pointed out to me that I should.

Example - blisters and cuts on my legs. I could go all day walking around on red, raw feet, carefree and pain free as can be. It's not until I take my braces off at night and see the damage myself that I start to feel the pain. And then? Oh, do I feel it! Big time. For the rest of the night, for the whole next day, and until it's completely healed.

Yesterday and today - well, I'm feeling the pains of a malady I was, just days before, blissfully unaware of.

At this time I'd rather not go into the details. I'm sorry, but I don't know enough about what's going on. So I'd like to better educate myself, talk to some more doctors, and make definite plans to take care of things before I report anything here.

Don't worry. I'm not dying or anything. It's something totally fixable, with different options for how that's achieved. It's just what's been on my mind this week, causing me physical and mental discomfort/stress. And I want to write some about it. Really, I do. But, for now, I think I'll save it for my next Audacity article and then, in time (soon, I promise), here.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I've gotta go find some Advil to mask the phantasmically real new aches and pains dancing around my middle.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Mama Monday #27

Theme: Scratch

Well, MSO, you've done it again. Another theme, another opportunity to go, Huh? and Ah! all in the same moment. I must admit, your choices are nothing if not multi-faceted.

I actually had lofty aspirations for this one - turning "scratch" on its head and writing some inspirational, yet amusing take on scratching the surface of a new life's adventure. But that wasn't going as well as I'd hoped. So I scrapped that idea and here I am, starting over from scratch, to more shamelessly plug a new endeavor.

My Hubby, a true Renaissance Man if ever there was one, was recently lurking around the blogosphere and greater www when he visited a favorite woodworking magazine's site. The mag had just started up a new feature - a Cafe Press shop - allowing them to sell shirts, caps, mugs, etc., with their own logo and designs on them.

After learning about this myself, I commented to Hubby, Oh yeah. That's where I got your Renaissance Soul T-shirt.

Knowing what a good quality shirt that is, we started to look more closely into what Cafe Press has to offer.

The answer? The opportunity to create your own designs, have them placed on clothing and accessories, and even sell the products to the masses. Want a mug with your daughter's picture on it? No problem! Want to supply your family with next year's reunion shirts? Done! Have a great T-shirt design you think the public will totally eat up? Cool! Just find the picture or create the design, upload it to the site, and Cafe Press will make the products you choose on demand. With no set-up cost, and only minimal work (not so tough for my graphic designer Hubby), this seemed like lots of fun and potentially profitable. What a great idea!

Now that Hubby has minimized his professional design hours to pursue his professional interests in woodworking, restoration and repair, this opportunity is just the ticket to keep his hands more firmly in the creative world. He's able to make the quality products that express his, and my, varied interests. Items we both want to own and wear ourselves. And if others are similarly interested in what we've created, so much the better. They can click on over to Blanchard Creative, check out our shop, and purchase some unique, well designed pieces for themselves.

Admittedly, right now our shop is pretty lean. We only have one design up so far, offered on three types of shirts. So, unless you or your own Hubby is interested in woodworking, you may not go for the current choice. But - oh boy - will there be more! Hubby and I are currently working on a design for the spina bifida community, and we've got plans in the works to tackle all sorts of different areas - cooking, comedy, wine, parenthood, and more. Like I said, Hubby has a wide range of interests, as do I. Together, we're definitely going to come up with some fun, interesting and creative product designs.

Just like homemade baked goods - made from scratch with plenty of love and care - we've designed these unique products from our hearts - for ourselves, for those we love, and for those who love the same things we do.

Check us out today! See what Hubby's created, from scratch, from deep inside his Renaissance Soul. With my help as a writer and his talent as a designer, we're sure to come up with lots of wonderful, varied options. Come on back as often as you like - you never know just what you'll find.

People, and Magazines, of Note

Hubby and I love reality shows. Rockstar: Supernova, Treasure Hunters and Last Comic Standing are among our recent boob tube indulgences.

We loved Last Comic Standing its first times out, but this season did seem a little lackluster. There were some great comics who were cut in the Hollywood round and some others let through that Hubby and I just didn't "get". But we were both at least happy to see . Josh Blue as a finalist. A disabled person (he has Cerebral Palsy) given a shot to succeed at his choosen career, sharing his amazing talent of comedy with the world. Awesome!

In the end, Josh won this season of LCS. No, he may not have been as hilarious as some of the past finalists and/or winners, but he's definitely funny. He pokes fun at himself - a unique, refreshing angle in the comedy world. While other top comics resort to going "blue" to get a laugh, Josh Blue gives us a comedic look into his personal struggles and challenges of daily life, letting us know it's just "what is" and, over all, he's doing well and living his dream. Hey, when life takes over and tries to bring you down, isn't it better to find the laughs instead of drowning in the tears? It sure is. Thanks for reinforcing that, Josh. Congratulations on your win.

Then I was recently reading the latest issue of Nick Jr. Family Magazine. In this issue, the editors recruited 12 "average joe" moms and dads to be special Guest Editors. One of whom being Ms. Kristine Schroeder, a 40- year old military wife living in Florida with her husband and adopted son. No big deal, huh? True, but I didn't yet mention - she has spina bifida and has used a wheelchair most of her life.

I love that her disability wasn't the prominent feature noted about Kristine in the mag. There's a roundtable discussion, moderated by Hannah Storm, where today's parenting hot topics are discussed. Kristine, as well as all the other Guest Editors, speak up and voice their varying opinions. At one point Kristine does mention that, I was in a wheelchair most of my childhood. But she didn't explain any further. And in most of the pictures of the GE's you can't see that she's at all different, ability wise, from any of the others.

It wasn't until I turned to a different article, where Kristine was interviewed by herself, that the headline announces her as One Can-Do Mom. The smaller subheading goes on to explain her position as a mom with spina bifida. Huh! How cool is that?!

Taking a closer look at the Nick Jr. Family Magazine website, I see that they've also featured articles in the past about how to include children of all different abilities in common play. Teaching "typical" children to be comfortable around and interact in a fun, safe way with disabled children. Cool! Nick Jr. Family Magazine really seems to be talking about and talking with some interesting, unique and worthwhile people and ideas. Way to go!

While I'm at it, here are some other really wonderful magazines I love - for their parenting advice and/or their informed, empowering take on the life of both disabled children and adults.

Audacity Magazine - of course. I mean, I am a featured monthly columnist for this awesome web zine. Audacity's tag line is: The Disabled Magazine for the Abled Minded. Always looking for new writers and new readers, this zine focuses on the audacious, daring lifestyles of today's physically disabled individuals.

Wondertime Magazine - a new parenting magazine out of Northampton, MA, this could appear to be "just another mommy mag". But in recent months they've featured a series called A Differnt Kind of Normal, about a family raising their special needs son. It does seem rare to get the focus on the disabled - child or adult - so I applaud Wondertime for taking the time to show that disability is not to be feared or shunned but is, in fact, just another type of normal.

Brain Child Magazine - I LOVE this magazine. My cousin turned me on to it (spoiling me by letting me borrow their "best of" edition) and, in turn, gifted me with a year's subscription for my birthday. I call this mag The New Yorker for the Parenting Set. With smart writing submitted from freelancers and "regular" parents alike, along with line drawing comics scattered throughout its pages, this publication really is a stand out periodical. The articles tend to read more like literary essays. They always make you stop, think, and appreciate how others live, love and survive - overcoming parenting challenges and helping kids with important issues they face in their own lives. A truly wonderful read, every issue.

What magazines, books or T.V. shows do you love? Who's making a difference in the world for you?

Friday, August 18, 2006

Sweetie Saturday #21 - Wedding Party Edition

Posted a tad early, again, due to yet another early morning start to another Saturday adventure.

Last weekend we travelled to Burlington, VT to attend my cousin's wedding. It was a beautiful ceremony, a gorgeous day, and lots of fun was had by all.

Sweetie was especially excited about the weekend's events. She was all wedding party all the time. She herself got to wear a wedding dress, she danced at the wedding party, we stayed at the wedding hotel, etc, etc.... (you get the idea).

We were changing into our wedding clothes at the first hotel (long story - don't ask) when the phone rang. At the time, Hubby was tracking down the guy with the box of light bulbs (part of the long story. Really - don't ask) and I was, um, using the facilities. But there was Sweetie, picking up the phone and talking like a big girl.


(It was Nana, staying in another room)

Hi Nana!..... Yes..... Uh huh....... Why, sure you can!

And then she handed the phone to me.

Wow! What a good job she did! Today - answering the phone. Tomorrow - racking up the cell phone charges.

Sweetie, also, was so proud of herself. She was all like,

I called Nana! I talked to Nana on the Wedding Phone!

And, of course, when we got to the second hotel (just - don't), she instantly went to that room's phone, waiting to call Nana again on this all new wedding phone.

What a silly monkey!


A couple days before we left, I casually told Sweetie, just once, that we could go to The Teddy Bear Factory during our trip.

Well, maybe kids don't hear everything we tell them, but they certainly pay attention to the things that most intrigue them... Sweetie continued to ask me every day about going to the Factory.

And, of course, we went. She got a bear. We had fun in town. Then we came home.

A relaxing, mini vacation. How nice to get away. :)

Love Bonus! It's All Around

So I was bopping around the blogosphere and I came upon this blog, calling for photo submissions depicting love. Well, I instantly knew which photo to post.

Aren't they the cutest? Sweetie and her Daddy. Daddy's little girl and the love of Sweetie's life. What a pair.

Thanks for the inspiration. Sure helps lighten my mood and appreciate that love truly is all around.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Repeat After Me...

...It's only money.

Financially speaking, we have our good days and many more that seem quite bad. Today, it's not so good. But it will be okay. We've been here before and we'll pull ourselves through. After all, it's only money. Life, in general, is pretty dang good.

But do you know how I know things will get better for us in terms of financial management and responsibility? Because of a little something I received in the mail about a month ago. My first request from an outsider for a product review. And here it is:

The Busy Body Book.

Now, I gotta tell you - I love organizers. I'm a scheduler, a list maker. So I happily jumped at the chance to get my hands on this new style organizer. And, so far, I'm not disappointed.

As you can see from the graphic, the pages in this book are arranged to display the 7 days of the week vertically, with 5 open columns running horizontally across the top. What you do with those 5 columns is up to you. Maybe there are five members of your family - great! Each person gets their own place to record the events of their particular upcoming week. Everyone has their own space to note what's going on for them and to see how that jibes with the activities of other household members.

I was planning to use the organizer in this fashion. But then I realized that, while we do have a typically busy schedule, the three of us tend to do most things together. So there's really no need to separate everything out. I had to consider what else I could do with the columns.

Eureka! I could use it as a ledger of sorts. The number of columns is perfect - one for income, and the others for checks written, cash spent, debit card uses, and credit card purchases. The only "downfall" is that there's not enough room to separate out the different store issued credit cards we have. Oh well, I can deal with that and group all of them together. No big deal.

It's only been a couple weeks since I started using it (the calendar is set from August 2006 - December 2007), but so far, I'm loving it. It's so easy to record every penny spent. And because we're being so mindful to note the flow of money in our lives, I'm really hopeful that we'll see a positive result come the end of the month. That is, at the end of 30 days, it should be super simple to calculate out all our gains against all the losses. Hopefully, unlike recent days, we'll see more gain than loss.

So I do definitely recommend the Busy Body Book. It's a fun, functional and creative way to record the events most important to you and your family. Whether that's who's working what hours and who's sporting events are on what days, recording the comings and goings of your financial well being, or anything else you can think of, I'm sure you can find a use that perfectly fits your needs.

To read more information about the Busy Body Book and/or to place an order, check out their website at

Monday, August 14, 2006

Mama Monday #26

Theme: Laugh

The Many Faces of Sweetie - Sharing The Gift Of Laughter

Friday, August 11, 2006

Sweetie Saturday #20 - Mommy Dissin' Edition

Published just a bit early because we've got an early start Saturday morning on a long weekend trip up north.

Last weekend Sweetie gathered up her Melman the Giraffe stuffed animal (which is actually mine), and her squishy red pillow and climbed up on her Daddy's lap.

You're holding all your things, Daddy - Sweetie, Melman and your pillow. You love your things, Daddy.

Me, coming into the room to find this adorable scene:

So what are my things, Sweetie.

Oh. Here you go, Mommy.

Then she proceeded to climb down off of Daddy and gather up my things to hand to me: a wood spoon and a toy wisk from her cooking set, and the cat comb.

Woo Hoo. Yay for me. I get the hard, sharp and pointy things while Daddy gets the squooshable, lovable things. Boy, am I lucky or what?

(Oh, and by the way? This continued all week. Sweetie remembered and referred to our given "things" on many different occasions.)


At bedtime one night this week I asked Sweetie for my regular hug, kiss & a nose from her. But she said no. So I scooped her up onto my lap and asked,

But don't you love me?

Her answer? No hesitation - just a No.

Then, a few minutes later, she offers up this added bit of information.

I love Daddy a LOT!.... and I love you...a little bit. (with a yeah, I guess that's about right kind of look in her eye.)

Gee, thanks a lot, Sweetie. You sure know how to make a person feel all warm and fuzzy inside. That is, if that person happens to be Daddy.


And now for the Sweetie-continues-to-showcase-her-genius-tendancies portion of the post.

Hubby usually reads Dr. Seuss bedtime stories to Sweetie. And on, we'd say, no more than 10-15 occasions, he's read her the story of Too Many Daves.

And now? Sweetie can say THE ENTIRE THING right along with him! Some lines, yes, she needs a tiny reminder of what comes next, but she picks it right up and finishes the rhyme, no problem.

I had the pleasure of listening to Hubby and Sweetie read me this story a couple nights ago. Wow! I couldn't believe it. When Hubby told me Sweetie knew the words, I thought she probably remembered some of the silly names in the story and that's about it. But we were both awestruck when she literally recited the whole story to us, keeping in time with Daddy's reading.

Wanna see what I'm talking about? Here is the complete text to Too Many Daves. Prepare to be amazed!


Just a heads up to my regular readers. We'll be away this weekend, with no computer or computer access available. So there'll be no Sunday post this week. Also, my Mama Monday post will be here, but considerably later on Monday than I usually get it up. Thanks for stopping by, though. I'll "see" you in a few days.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Patience of Mom

I have been known to:

- calmly and matter-of-factly walk from the highway to a somewhat nearby hotel at 11:30 at night to find a phone and call for help, leaving my broken down car on the side of the road. All about 2 weeks before major back surgery. (Luckily I called my parents before the cops did when they found my abandoned car).

- have the "patience of a saint". My co-workers in particular are always telling me this. My job entails a lot of detail work and the need to work with many programs at one time on a tight schedule. I can generally do this all with no problem and no major freak out sessions (unless, of course, I'm having a horrendous day of it. But even then I can pretty much manage to keep my wits about me until I leave the building).

- enjoy the highly detailed, mindful hobby of counted cross-stitch. I love following intricate patterns and creating beautiful pictures out of colorful strands of thread.

In short - I am a very patient person. Cool, calm and collected - I like to take my time, figure things out, and get things done correctly. And if mistakes happen that make me have to start over - well, then I guess I'm starting over. Nothing to whine and cry about - that only wastes more time. I just pull myself together and get back to work.

So, why is it that I absolutely cannot stand to play games with Sweetie?!

It is like torture for me to play Memory, CandyLand, Go Fish, Chutes and Ladders, etc., etc., etc..... with her. I know she's only 3 years old, but her inability to focus on the game (even though she does definitely want to play and will cry if you refuse to continue) is driving me insane. I constantly have to raise my voice to bring her back to reality and to look at the board, watch what I'm doing so she knows what she needs to do next, and go through with her turn. Even if I take my turn immediately upon completion of her last turn, she is already distracted enough to not know it's already back to her again.

I just can't cope. That's all. I hate it. And I don't use the word "hate" lightly. But, for this, it works.

I don't get it - what's the difference between my extreme patience with most other things in life and my complete and total impatience with the gaming skills of a toddler?

It makes no sense to me at all.

In the meantime, I'll pass as much as possible of the game playing time off to Daddy while I wait for Sweetie to be old enough to learn, and appreciate, the more skilled crafts of crossword puzzles and counted cross stitch.

Yeah, I know. I'll be waiting a long time. But that's okay - I'm patient.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Mama Monday #25

Theme: Camp

I'm interested to read all the other posts on the theme of camp, many of which revolve around - you guessed it - camping. I'm interested simply because it's something I'm not very familiar with, so learning about new experiences is always fun.

I've been camping exactly once. It was when I was about 12 years old and I was accompanying my good friend and her family on a weekend full of camp fires, fireflies and port-o-potties. Unfortunately, the family dynamics in this group were less than desirable, especially for someone like me who winces at nearly any sort of confrontation (at least back then. Now I'm learning to stand on my own a bit more and not let other's issues get me down). So, needless to say, I didn't end up having the greatest of times, tarnishing me for wanting to venture on any further camping expeditions (funny, though, that the camping aspect of the weekend wasn't what bothered me as much as the family I was with. But, still, it was an influential trip that ruined the whole camping experience).

Now, my idea of camping is staying at the Econolodge instead of a beautiful B&B. Which, by the way, is exactly what we'll be doing this upcoming weekend. My cousin is getting married on a mountaintop near Burlington, VT. The option is there for wedding guests to stay with the couple and camp out overnight underneath the stars. Maybe a beautifully romantic thought for some, but not for me. Give me a warm bath, a soft bed, a TV and computer access every time, please, and I'll be just fine.

I wish my cousin and her new husband all the love, laughter and happiness in the world, and I am absolutely thrilled for them that they're having the wedding of their dreams (mountaintop reception with volleyball, frisbees and dancing, and camping out with several of their guests under the expansive summer sky). I can't wait to be there to help celebrate their union and honor the love between them on the start of their life journey together.

But you can be sure I'll be off that mountain before the gates close for the evening.

And if you need me, call the local Econolodge.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Yeah, But Trading Spaces Was On

So, last night was interesting.

Our chiropractor had asked us earlier this week if we had plans for Saturday night. When we said we were free, she asked if we like Jazz and Blues. Sure!

Turns out another patient of hers had purchased tickets to a Blues Bash concert. But she ended up not being able to go, so she gave them to our chiropractor.

Our doctor was all set to go and have a great time when she realized she had a wedding to go to that day. Going to an evening function as well would just make for a too long and tiring day. So we got the tickets. Cool!

In all honesty, we didn't know what to expect. The Bash was held at a health and fitness center one town over from where we live. So that was somewhat questionable. But the ticket price was $50 a pop (we acquired them for free. Double cool!), so we were reasonably hopeful that there would be drinks and snacks available. If the event was a bust, at least we could drown our boredom in alcohol and shrimp cocktails.

Ummmmm, try Skittles, animal crackers, peanuts and tortilla chips with salsa. But there was a cash bar, so that was good. I had an amaretto sour and Hubby had his Sam Adams lager. We were content.

So anyway, we got there at 7pm, when the event began. We were "checked in" when they asked us what name we were under on the guest list. Uh.... we had no clue. We told our tale of our third hand tickets. No problem, they just checked off our ticket numbers instead of name. All set.

Even though we got there on time, the only other people there were the band (still warming up), the event organizers and their dates, and a token "DJ" and her husband (although I only saw her take the mic one time and she hardly said or did anything that was very DJ-like. But she was wearing a skin tight, 2 piece, belly bearing get up with a floor length, sparkly, shear jacket on top. So at least she provided some visual entertainment).

By about 7:30 a few more people had shown up and the "event" truly began. Turns out we were at a fundraiser for The Harriet Wilson Project. Who the heck is Harriet Wilson? We were asking ourselves the same thing. Well, one of the organizers soon stood up and told the "crowd" (term loosely used) a little more. Harriet Wilson was the first black person in the world to have a novel published in English. Huh. How about that. Oh, and she's from one town over from where we live - Milford, NH. Double huh!

So this event was all about raising money to build and erect a life sized statue of Ms. Wilson in a park in Milford. Presumably, some of the ticket proceeds were going to this fund, as were the proceeds from a silent auction. Too bad the turn out was so sparse.

Meanwhile, back at the homefront... Nana was watching Sweetie and was all set to put her to bed. We told my mom we wouldn't stay long - we'd be home by 9:30. I admit, when we left home I was a bit leery that we'd meet the 9:30 deadline. I was secretly hopeful that we'd find ourselves in the middle of some cool concert scene that we'd not want to pull ourselves away from.

Oh well. No such luck. Even though the music was good, by about 8:00 we were looking at our cell phone clocks, telling ourselves we only had to stick it out for another hour.

By 8:15 we were planning our escape route - get up, peruse the silent auction offerings, and keep on heading right out the door.

By 8:30 we were in our car, to arrive home 10 minutes later.

Just in time to for Hubby to put Sweetie to bed himself and then for us to settle down to watch one of our favorite shows. Oh, and for Hubby to satisfy his man crush on Faber Dewar.

I like Faber. he says. He's a doer.

Yep. This was much more our speed.... How boring are we.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Sweetie Saturday #19

Heard this past week:

As Sweetie studied the mechanics of her foot and ankle:

Look, Daddy. My Adam's apple is by my toes.


From the back seat of the car:

It's my birthday! It's my birthday!

We turn around to see what she was doing and who she was talking to. She had completely covered herself up with a large blanket and she was talking to her Hello Kitty figurines (who were with her under the blanket).

Hubby asks:

Are you the present?


Are you a ghost?

NO! It's my party!

(This reminded us that she did say earlier in the week, while doing the same thing with this blanket, that this was her party blanket.)

Your party?

Yeah! This is my party blanket.

Oh! That's right.

Yeah. You were confused, Daddy.


I told my mom about Teddy's tragic emergency this past weekend. She later asked Sweetie about it. Mom wondered if Sweetie could show her where exactly Teddy got hurt, to which Sweetie said.

Oh, no. Not this Teddy at your house. It was my other Teddy at my house.

So much for "keeping the dream alive" that her "one and only" Teddy magically travels with her from house to house.


And now for something completely amazing!

Sweetie put this puzzle together all by herself this week!

First she took the pieces out, grouped them by color, then put the whole thing back together again.

She's the smartest little girl in the world, isn't she? Yeah. I thought so. :)

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

I Swear I Didn't Put Her Up To This....

Question: What do you do when your vacuum dies and yet you still have two majorly shedding cats living in your house?

Simple. Just have your 3 year old "pet comb" your carpet.

(Hey - We may not get around to combing the shedding fur directly off our cats - but we do get to the combing eventually.)

Sweetie has fun and our carpet gets de-furred. Everybody wins!