Tea Time & Tragedy

Like waves on the sand are often my emotions when I’m sleep deprived. That’s not a quote I stole intentionally.

Recently I prided myself in not caring what people think. That didn’t last long.

Here’s a few tidbits bright and early this morning:

  • Having a kid pee the bed while you’re in it is not a romantic way to wake up even if it resembles a poetic scene in Anne of Green Gables.
  • I puke if I have a “hand in ice water” contest with a friend and haven’t eaten that day. (Three minutes? Seven? REALLY?? Totally worth the tie.)
  • If you go for a run after drinking detox tea…nevermind.
  • If you (accidentally) lock your cat in the girls’ bedroom and go to the mountains for 4 days there will be a stenchy problem upon your return.
  • I sent Jakie baby shopping with his brother while Cass and I had sushi and he came back with gpa shoes, work jeans, and a long sleeve shirt. Then he wore the shoes all the next day walking PDX in the same socks. (See my YUCK post if you’re looking for more of these when this is over.) The drive to Gpa E’s funeral was ripe and humid.
  • When a bossy sanguine like me is told to let other people make big decisions for me I don’t sleep.
  • I have 2.2 miles left for the week to hit my 15 mile goal on Teddy the Treadmill. No, 2.1. No, 1!
  • Here’s my morning jam: Down to the River

I’m off to have some tea–hopefully not tragedy & definitely not detox.


The one with all the Thanksgivings

We’ve always embraced family feasts and festivities.

By that I mean we attend them all. Just kidding mom, we love the holidays!

We also love tradition. When we had kids this concept became CRYSTAL clear. Traditions we wanted to make/keep, however, were foggier than the gravy in the porcelain turkey boat.

If you’re hoping to start some sort of cleanse or diet, better avoid our week of Thanksgiving itinerary because WE. LOVE. FOOD.

The first couple of years we weren’t asked to cook anything…hmm…but we were expected to finish 2 full blown meals on Thanksgiving Day–one with each side of the family. Let your stomach ache picturing that. It was a good ache though.

While I’m no Betty Crocker or Martha Stewart, I do enjoy feeling like I’ve contributed to the muffin top over everyone’s fat pants. I’m more of a Rachael Ray so when I flopped the pumpkin pies (forgot the sugar, didn’t beat the egg yolks) I was surprised/relieved when Aunt Linda loved it so much she made it into a game, “Whoever has the rock hard boiled egg yolk in their piece of pie wins a prize!” for the next couple of years. At least I didn’t put beef in the trifle. “It tastes like feet!”

Traditions change but for me, the week before Thanksgiving will always include mouthing the words of all the FRIENDS Thanksgiving episodes and eating my way through more than my share of leftover Halloween candy while watching Ross undergo a mental breakdown.

After about a decade of trying to determine the best way to spend this particularly popular holiday we’ve settled on a rotation of the families. Why does this seem like such a foreign concept to Jakie Baby? My family gets the actual T day this year. My bro, Uncle Awesome, suggested the kids take on the bulk of the planning and give my mom a (well deserved) break. I didn’t secretly wish I’d thought of that. The best part about this is that my family actually thinks I’m a great cook! This is what I like to tell myself. But thank goodness grandpa Bob is making the turkey.

First, though, we have to run the turkey trot. Last time I was announcing my pregnancy with Baby Nor and ran a frigid 5K with Packy on my back. This time should be more tolerable as long as I don’t consume the finish line pastries like the CBS “Survivors” at their surprise Thanksgiving feast.

I am thrilled to cook and participate in all of the planned events (including Black Friday shopping with Jakie Baby at 5am) to create lasting memories of a family I’m forever thankful for.

But please don’t eat my sandwich.

1st Day in the 2nd Grade

Today was an all day trial run at school. I dropped baby Nor at daycare and the big kids played hard with other TK’s (teacher’s kids) while I worked “cause mama gots stuff ta do!”


Obviously, it’s going to be a transition.

Welp, it looks like summer vacation has officially called curtain. Tomorrow is huge at this house. One kid enters Kindergarten while the other is in 2nd grade!

It seems like yesterday I was Judy Moody ready to enter my first real school experience after Pre-K to 1st at home with my bomb digity teacher mom.

There was this fashion show and all the “local talent” entered with the latest, hippest back to school clothing of ’92. My vague memory says most of the outfits were from The Bon, Miller’s, or Penny’s but I know it was a special fashion show for all us farm folk. We sauntered across a bunch of tables lined up inside a restaurant. It’s not what you think…I’m pretty sure it wasn’t just kids. My memory has a few old people too. They were like, 30.

I couldn’t sleep the night before school started. Like most kids the excitement was all I could take. I couldn’t wait to catwalk the school halls in my new stylish burgendy plaid jumper and hot pink leather purse. It was to be the best day.


The morning came and I was so excited I puked.

So, my official first day of school was the second day of 2nd grade.

Tonight the big kids were forced to get to bed early because it will obviously make tomorrow better. I snuck into Packy’s room and scared the bajeepers out of him without saying a word. (Mom:1.) Luckily he found it as funny as I did.


Now that it’s quiet, baby Nor can finally relax and have much needed tub time.

She’s suddenly fascinated with shoving her fist in her mouth and making herself gag.

That’s not my favorite habit. (I guess I have a few.)

She needs to know that I’m not going to miss another epic first day of 2nd grade because of vomit.



<<This boy. He’s pretty sad about the move. This is his favorite hiding place. He’ll miss this, the garden, and the salamander…he is pretty annoyed about leaving them behind. But let’s be honest, now that this is over, mama’s finally free from the summer time blues.

20150806_154103<<This girl. She’s sad to leave her room that she never sleeps in and rarely played in but used as an escape from her chaotic bro. We painted the wall together so we had to take a last pic. The only way I convinced her to sleep in there was to promise I’d pull a tooth out when it was too loose. 20150803_202448

This delicious lump >> learned how to spy on the neighbors just before her first BM (big move) and doesn’t have a clue anything is different other than the fact that her sister shares her room and it’s extremely entertaining to squawk loudly at her at 5 am. Daily.

“Here Mommy. It’s your last flowers I can bring you here.”

Will I miss the house? Yes. But only because our family has spent four years here and it all went down so fast. The memories of it are plastered all over Facebook for life so it’s not like I can’t see every meal we ever ate and get all weepy and emotional over the loony backyard selfies.

Am I glad it’s finally done? You tell me.

So, on to the next stop in the Oltman Valley Tour. We loudly proclaim through the halls of our apartment building, “Ready or not, here we come!” We’ve already written apology cards to our neighbors and given a sliver of warning for what has now been so conveniently forced on them with our family of five.

Pretty sure we won’t be the ones hiding anymore.

Not So Berry Good

Today we went to the cabin. Just us 5. It was peaceful, cool, and calm. I took a nap rest in the hammock with Baby Nor while the big kids and Jakie Baby went hunting for treasures. Two hours later, I finally fell asleep for reals back in the bedroom. Ten minutes after that, the scavengers returned…

with this wild thing:20150725_213803

It actually smells amazing and I’m not one to complain about flowers.

My fam dragged my begrudging booty out of bed and we quickly packed our day bags out to the truck. They had to show me what they found and it had to be now.

Huckleberries at Spout aren’t on right now as much as mile marker 13 (as versatile-vegan.com tells of their good fortune with this purple gold) so it wasn’t berry good picking. After about 20 minutes of Baby Nor eating all I picked, I trudged back to the rig and about 52 seconds later the others joined me. We didn’t do berry good but we did talk about poison ivy a lot.

We had about a cup to use tonight for a berry compote don’t try to click that because I don’t have a recipe. It’s just 2 cups of berries to 1/3 cup of sugar over medium heat for 15 minutes.


And since I’m impatient, my whipping cream, whole milk, vanilla and sugar went directly into here:



And this wasn’t berry good either.

I kid. It was devoured. They didn’t even care that it was more of a milkshake.

I’m not a patient baker (meaning I don’t belong in the kitchen beyond keeping my kids nourished) so unfortunately the consistency was more like whipped cream so I threw the rest into the freezer. We’ll see.

Now that the kids are in bed I’m thinking about the lovely day we had. I’m listening to the neighbors as they jam to the (live) mariachi band and realize it’s 10:04. Sleepy time, new guys. I like the beat but when my kids are finally going to sleep and it’s after ten, that doesn’t make me berry happy. No, I don’t like that berry well.

I do love where we live though. I love it berry much.20150725_193846

Mirror, Mirror

Our family celebrated my grandpa’s 89th birthday over the weekend. We met at a pretty little park across from the nursing home he lives at. He smiled a lot.

I see a lot of pain in his eyes. But he glows when his family is near.

He cries too. Which makes me cry.

2015-07-20 18.12.40Hey baby, I want you to know I love your chubby self. I love your crazy hair, your gummy grin, your squishy feet…

I love you from head to toe.

2015-07-20 18.13.28 2015-07-20 18.13.51

Don’t cry!

I try not to think about when someone will change how she sees herself. I hate it, but it’s going to happen. The thought of someone making her see herself differently than I do breaks my heart.

2015-07-20 18.14.24

You have those big, beautiful eyes! You have such a fizzy sparkle.

For now, I’ll do my best to learn how to teach you to love yourself and grow into the strong, confident woman God created for you to be.

2015-07-20 18.11.17

2015-07-20 18.10.26When you see yourself in the mirror, what do you see?

I try hard to use humor in my posts because for a sec I can avoid thinking about some nasty floaties in the waters of real life.

Today, while you’re reading this, couldn’t you inspire someone to be confident?

Step 1: BE who you are. Let others be who they are. Condescending isn’t a pretty color on anyone.

Step 2: Continue to strive for excellence and keep learning. Educate yourself.

Step 3: Care for each other. BE KIND.

Step 4: Quit being so blatantly hard on yourself with the “that makes my fat show” BS. As for the people you see, you know, the ones who should not be wearing that, leave them alone too. You don’t even know.

There are a lot of little, beautiful eyes on us…watching what we do and listening to what we say.

Teach them to be kind too.

Teach them to be leaders who know what respect looks like. Show them respect too.

I’m told they’ll pick your nursing home…

I Forget to Remember

Today I’m working away at all of my classes before the big kids return from FIVE whole days with grandparents. The reason for this isn’t something I’ll forget intentionally but since I do that so frequently I’ll just blog about it to remind myself. I am craving time with my kids. Uninterrupted, stress-less, energized, quality time with my three wee ones.

It’s not like I’ve intentionally forgotten about them.

It’s not like I want to be this busy.

It just feels like there’s so much going on. So many balls in the air that I’m afraid if I drop one, I’ll drop them all.

I haven’t even been to the school (work) since…well, I forget.

I’ve forgotten to water the yard,

tend to the garden,

how awful my allergies are immediately when I weed anything outside,

the laundry.

How could I ever forget the laundry. You’ve heard of Mt. Kilimanjaro, yes? No? >> What’s Mt. Kill-Aman-Jarro?

I’ve forgotten how much I love to bake Candied-Ginger-Zucchini Bread. Click here to see a delish zucc bread recipe)

Some things I remembered to love today:

  • the sound of Baby Einsteins in the background for a baby of mine.
  • working outside with Jakie baby.
  • the smell of the zucc bread I have in the oven now.
  • finishing the long, time consuming assignments due today.
  • iced watermelon soda with fresh mint and lime

But the BEST thing about today is that the big kids come home. Packy told me on the phone yesterday that when he sees me he’s going to give me the biggest hug ever and the longest!

Em misses baby Nor.

Here’s a few things we’ll be doing this week:

  • going to a movie on discount Tuesday
  • seeing a dollar movie on discount Wednesday
  • eating too much popcorn
  • eating a lot of popcorn
  • swimming at the M-F pool (FYI: not a classless way to make a statement, just the initials where the pool is)
  • visiting the new SPLASH PAD
  • reading
  • snuggling
  • hugging

The reason for today’s post can be found here: Clive Wearing

The man lost his memory. For realz.

This week will be about quality kid/family time to remember. I hope the only thing I forget to remember is how much I don’t like one of my classes…and the Kilimanjaro wannabe upstairs.

Mom-Digity, Mom-Doubt (mmhmm)

So I don’t know ALL the words. But I do know a bunch of them are going into tonight’s post because “word is bond and fakin’ moves’ never been my thing!” (say wha?) I don’t know.

I’m also aware that DIGGITY is DOUBLE G but I’m only down enough for one. I’m not hip for that.

Speaking of hip, how much does that matter anyways? Does it really define us? Just because we try to change for good and it happens to fit with the times does that mean we are trying to be HIP? I don’t think so. Play on.

Herb’s the word:

FRESH basil, jalapeno, and squeezed lemon starting the dressing followed by a 1/2 cup of blueberry sauce, a pinch of balsamic vinaigrette & olive oil.

Spins the verb:

FRESH dinner salad with roasted veggies: zuchs, colored string beans, & BEETS!

Lovers it curves so freak what you heard, OH!

Hello Lover.

(I think I like the rhyme because I’m an LA teacher…) (NAH!) (I just like it, ok!)

I like the way you work it.

No digity, no doubt.

I also have no doubt Pitch Perfect* does a pretty fab lady version of this sick beat.

*I’m not condoning it thanks to non-mom-digity lyrics but hey, if you’re still hip and need a head boppin’ minute while you hide in the pantry…I won’t doubt.

See how hip I am?

We Live in Boxes

Today I woke up to the dark, dusty smell of boxes. I’m kind of freaked out by the sound they make when I fold and tape them. Not just because I know it means we are closing the chapter at this house but because it sounds a lot like nails on a chalkboard. (Allow your tummy to flip thinking about that!)

Yesterday wasn’t supposed to be a packing day but if you know me, you know I can’t leave well enough alone. Someone gave us more than enough boxes. Considering he just moved into a million dollar mansion, I think he needed more boxes. I did not. But here they are. They lie here staring at me. They have dared me not to touch them. FINE! I’ll pack my junk! Ok, it’s not junk. All of my junk is actually now at the thrift store. (You’re welcome, SonBridge) All I have left is the needed junk. Oh right, I said it’s not junk.

I don’t know why the song below has been stuck in my head because I’m not sure I’d ever heard it before this morning. In fact, until I looked it up on YouTube I was sure that I had written it. Guess not…

We Live in Boxes

This is how I feel today.

Sorry if it brings you down! I just feel like I should be able to organize my life like you can with boxes. A box for my homework, a box for me, a box for my kids, one for my husband, one for the junk. (Not necessarily in that order!)

If you haven’t seen it before, A Tale of Two Brains gives my theory a hug. Also, it makes me feel like I think like a man.

But I don’t know any man who needs this many boxes…