Thursday, July 31, 2008

Balancing on Stilts... Going backwards

I'm one of "those" moms that actually thinks it's a big deal to have "family time." Usually that means having our meals together as much as possible; but when you have kids that are into sports... that gets a little tricky. Last year, when Tony was an assistant coach for the 2 older boy's football teams, it was really hard. So hard in fact, he decided not to coach this year because, although Caden and I went to most of the practices; there were some nights we'd just hang out together and watch the clock until they'd come home.

This year, only Colton is playing football. Since he is changing schools, and wanted to be with his friend that he played baseball with, he's playing on a team that is ALL the way across town. So for the next few months, 6 days a week, we'll be driving him to his practice or his game.

Here's my hang up.

AJ will be finished with All Stars this weekend; but he's already been playing summer ball for the last few weeks. Since I'm with Colton at his football practice, I've been missing his baseball games... and I JUST HATE THAT!

Not only am I missing AJ's baseball games, I'm not with Tony and the other boys at night (the other 2 boys usually go with their dad to the games too). Tonight was supposed to be the first night we'd all go to the football practice together, but Tony just called (all excited) to say that AJ has a practice tonight for a travel ball team.

AJ has been really excited about some other teams that he's thinking he wants to play for too. And I'm happy for him, really I am. I just... I just... I just want to SEE ALL his GAMES too, and BE WITH HIM AND HIS DAD... instead of being across town at football practice.

The whole point of Tony not coaching, wasn't so that we could be on different fields, in different cities 5 nights a week... it was so that we'd actually be together... even if that meant we were together at some sport event.


So... yeah... I feel like I'm trying to balance it all... but right now I'm feeling like I'm going backwards instead of forwards.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Eight Ways To Say "Happy B-Day"

Happy Birthday Colton-
I didn't know it was possible, but I love you more every moment of every day!
Enjoy your new upgraded cell phone... and YES ... you still only get 8 text messages a day, and 8 hours of being on the Internet a month... I don't care that your dad got it upgraded for your birthday, or what the "plan says you can have for 'free'"... I have the stretch marks on my tummy that say I still get the final say on your b-day gifts... Enjoy your 8 new video games... and NO... you still can't play them on "No video Game" days, even though they're birthday gifts from Nana and Aunt Mikie.

Enjoy the new pool toys... and new football cleats... and room decorations...
Enjoy your 8 friends and cousins who came to wish you happy birthday today. Enjoy your B-day ice cream that Daddy got special just for you (since you still enjoy being "difficult" and won't eat cake) ... I'm glad you enjoyed starting football conditioning on your birthday... and YES, you'll still have to do ALL the drills, even when you tell them it's your special day.
But Colton...

Most of All... my prayer is that you'll remember these 8 things...

You have been God's special gift to your father and I.

We love you with our whole hearts, as imperfect as we are.

He has a special plan for your life.

Do everything with your whole heart, mind and soul.

Dream Big

Love Big.

Enjoy the moment, Anticipate the future, Learn from the Past

Hug mommy lots... it's the best part of my day!!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Thursday Thrills...

Last night I was playing around on my blog and completely messed it up... and I need a little help here... *Note to self... you're not so good with computers... find someone else to help you with your blog!!!* **thoughts anyone??


After basketball camp,

and our trip to the library,

and lunch with daddy,

and bowling with the kids,

and my nap/rest/cuddle time with ... I think it's Colton's turn...

Then we'll all go swimming and clean up before dad comes home...

But after I go to supper club with our best buds who are returning from Africa tonight,

and football physicals for the boys...

I'm hoping to get a minute to work on my blog...

so please leave a comment if I can add you to my list of favorite blog reads...

because I just deleted most of them from my bookmarks!

NICE hugh???


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Learning to love what they need

There are 5 love languages...

I'm convinced that TMac's love language is Physical Touch... despite what the book says;

(All the boys are "touchy" too, just like their daddy... which is really hard on mama since I'm NOT)

Anyway, here's the Mac family's love language:

Tony's is Acts of service and Giving (Reason 765,079,843 I finally agreed to marry him - Who wouldn't want to be served and spoiled?? )

Kyle's is Words of Affirmation

AJ's is Quality Time

Colton's is Gift Giving, with a touch of Word Affirmation

Caden's is Physical TTTTTTTTTouch

Me --I'm.... MOODY -- so Tony would say I'm a little of all 4. It depends on my mood... so yeah, I guess SS would be right about the high maintenance thing...whatever!

But I'd say I'm really all ABOUT GIFT GIVING !!! I love to get them and I love to give them.

I love, love, love to give them actually.

So when I saw this... it made my day!!!

(This is one of THE BEST blogs I've read... it will make you laugh and cry...)

And after I did this with my son who likes his QTime with mom... (and I love it too)

I got inspired again to work on these to give to Tony's all star team...
And I needed to be inspired to start up again, because after doing ELLA's cute PINK book... this just didn't seem quite so fun to me.
And then I worked... and I mean REALLY worked at giving some nice Words of Affirmations for my 2 little ones...

who BLESS their hearts... made their own lunch...

ummm... those RITZ crackers are smothered in peanut butter, American cheese, cream cheese and turkey...

ALL together...

But since I'm working on giving these boys words of AFFIRMATION...
I bit my tongue and didn't say YUCKKKKKK...

I said... YUMMY (and thanks for sharing 1 but I'm on a diet--lucky me, so you go ahead and eat the rest... but save 1 for daddy so he can enjoy one too. * I'm good like that.)

If you haven't read the book on Love Languages... especially the one to discover what your kids' are... you should. It's helped me love my boys... all of them... like they need to be loved... rather than what comes easy to me. What a difference it makes.

ps.. Thanks for the inspiration today J!!!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Never, ever say "Never"

I just got my job-share teaching contract for next year in the mail.... which means....

Not only will I continue to teach first graders 3 days a week like I've been doing, which is what I absolutely LOVE ; it also means that in a few short weeks, summer vacation is over and school begins for my own boys.

Since we decided at the end of last year that the boys wouldn't be returning to the private school that they were at, we really need to nail down what the plan is going to be for next year. It's a much harder decision for me than Tony because I just "NEVER" thought they would ever go anywhere else. BVG was not only just their school, it's also where we go to church. The church that I've gone to for the last 30 years! I just "NEVER" dreamed that my kindergartner wouldn't graduate at 18 as a Senior with most of the same kids he graduated from Kindergarten with at 5, just like I did. I wanted that for them... and I'm sad that it's not going t be like that for them.

But... God has a sense of humor... a way of bringing you to a place where you never thought you'd be... just to show you how very little control you really have.

My 4 boys are so different... in so many ways... not the least of which is apparent with their needs for school. So, in our effort to do what is best for them individually...

Kyle wants to stay at BVG another year... so for now, we've agreed. (ahh, my baby... in Jr. HIGH... urggggg)

And although all three of our boys actually got into the new charter school that we've be praying they'd get into... we've decided that only our first and third grader will go.

But my fourth grader... daddy's little all-star... my little wonder boy... He "gets" to be home schooled.

cough, gasp... ^(*^(%*()_...


I 'always' said that "I would NEVER" do that... but; here I am ... eating that phrase; yet again.

I'm notorious for having to eat those words... (You'd think I'd learn, and stop using it!)

I said I would "NEVER" marry Tony.
I said I would "NEVER" live in Mo Town.
I said I would "NEVER" home-school!!!!
The year Kyle started school, AJ was in pre-school across town, and the 2 little ones were at 2 other places and I DISTINCTLY remember swearing (usually with lots of tears) that I would NEVER, ever agree to anything that committed me to going 4 different directions in the morning before work.

The list of things I said I'd NEVER do could go on forever--

But, here I am... and I'm praying that I'm doing what's best for each of them; because the truth of the matter is:

The older the boys get, the more I realize that life isn't about convenience or ease. For me or for them. The decisions we make for our kids shouldn't be about what 'we' want for them, but by what we know will be best for them... even if that means I have to do things I said I'd NEVER do.

AND... I hope that when my kids are deciding what old folks to put their father and I in when we're not-so-old, but very senile... I hope they NEVER forget how much I love them!!!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Knights in Training... Examples please!

The best way to teach is by example... so here's my knight in shining armor getting the gourmet potatoes ready for dinner...

(nice arms... eh???) Yeah... Now I think so too... but I never really noticed that until Ree pointed out Marboro Man's ... isn't that sad???) Not my thing... but I love him because he is the most helpful, loving man around... with the biggest "servant's heart"... a true gift when you have 4 BOYS!!!

And here's my Knight in training... making dessert before his big game last night... (where he was the only one to "CRUSH" the ball.... yep, daddy's boy for sure!)

He's so proud... he loves crushing the oreos... and making A HOLY MESS!!

But I figured I had to be a little forgiving after all the shopping they let me do while they were at VBS the day before...

Like all my purses and shoes??? ME TOO... and they were "pretty good sports" posing too. (SORTA)

Black, red, neutral and green... got em all covered in one day- not bad.

ummm... back to this...

like all that butter??? Ree would be proud...

AND here's my 2 all stars... who I'm SOOO proud of!!!

BUT... here's my secret for not ever eating what my kids make... (besides dieting... again, still)

I spent the last decade saying... you need to share with your brothers--

but I didn't mean this:

or this:

or this:

opps ( you get the idea)...

"NOT" when you're cooking SON... that's GROSS!! (but they apparently don't mind-because it's ALL gone) I didn't get any tri-tip, or potatoes, or dessert, or corn, or broccoli (YUCK)... but I did eat the bread... which is why I need to be on a diet anyway.


Have a great weekend Y'all!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Dirty Carnival

My boys have always loved a good mud fight... so I knew this would be a great picture for the Dirty Boy Carnival...

What I didn't know ...
Was that I'd have to look through all of these:

and all of these...

just to find some "dirty pictures" of my boys.

I'm quite certain my boys were dirty all the time when they were little... so I was totally dumbfounded that I couldn't find more "proof" of that in their baby scrapbooks...

I'm not kidding... you'd think I never let them get dirty! (Tony didn't, but I did... I know I did... apparently I just didn't take enough pictures of it... because they aren't there!)

Each boy has a white album for their first year... and they all have a different color from age 1 to 5, and I "tried" to keep each year to one album until they reached school.

Now they have school albums, vacation albums, and sports albums...

AHHH... that would be if I ever get all these pages...

and these pages...
and these pages...

into their respective albums...

sometime before their 18th birthday... at which time... 'unlike' what my father told me...

"I'll give them a road map and a sack lunch"...

I'm going to give them the map, the lunch, and --- 37 scrap booking albums.


What do you think about that plan???

Thanks to this blog: for the great trip down memory lane... it really was fun to get all these books out and look through them together!!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


This week was Vacation Bible School at the church for the boys.

Another monumental moment for me (more for me than for them) because ALL 4 went... without me... the entire time... for the first time... ever.

It was... It is... so sad... in a "weird and lame" kind of way!

I thought I'd have a good 3 hours to scrap, or shop, or blog... (NO... the thought of doing the laundry, or catching up on the housework, or any other # of things I really should have been doing... ever crossed my mind -b.c. well, who wants to do that???)

And I tried to do some of that... but mostly I just looked at the clock... anxiously awaiting when I could go pick them up because I really miss them ... A LOT... so tomorrow ... the third and last day of VBS--

I'm going to drop them off right at 10:00 am (instead of 10:15ish and leaving around 10:30)...
and I'm not going to pick them up at 12:40 (since it's not really over until 1:00 pm)...

and I'm going to ...

go buy some cute shoes - since I'm sure I need some. HA

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Too much Pioneer Woman!!!

The boys woke up to Pioneer Woman's yummy Sleeping in Omelet this morning... and they were very happy campers!!!

Then Kyle walked by the computer and read that if you don't make this cake your life will be devoid of purpose .... so we "had" to do that too.

Did he do good or what...

And these lovely treats are strawberry and apricot breakfast bars.... also thanks to Ree.

(Nice arms TMAC... if you're into that sort of thing... like Ree is... but I'm not... but at least I noticed, so that's good!)

See these happy, toothless boys... very happy indeed... because after they finish this last bowl, mommy promised they could have some blue berries and home-made yogurt! YUMMY!

and because we're working on fractions... kyle quadrupled the recipe...

And let me just say, that's A LOT of brown sugar!!!

So I figured we'd invite a few folks to help eat it all... because we don't do left-overs (but I'm working on that).

So, my parents brough over my great uncle to enjoy all of Kyle's hard work in the kitchen... and daddy took a break from doing yard work... And we had some more friends stop by for dinner... and they enjoyed... all of it too!

ummm.... what are you doing SS, and why???

And HE thinks I'M High maintenance??? Go figure!!!

His mother... whom I LOVE dearly... ruined this great guy for his poor wife. But contrary to what everyone thought... that wasn't me... lucky for him... b.c. I DO. NOT. CUT. THE. CORN. OFF. "CORN-ON-THE COB." (Can you imagine???)

Anyway... I'm off to finish making cinnamon rolls for AJ's all-star team... cuz I know it's going to help us win today... especially since I stayed up all night making them.

AND... no SS... I will not, absolutely NOT ruin my boys...

(I hope... but if I start... feel free to help me out)

AND yes, I still think you are more high maintenance than I am... but it's close...

I'll give you that much!

Friday, July 11, 2008

By The Books

I confess that I never read any "mommy books" or "how to books" that weren't a college requirement for my teaching credential.

*breathe, girls breathe*

I didn't take any kind of "birthing" classes either. NOT. A. SINGLE. ONE!!!


Not because I didn't care, not because I didn't have the time... I just decided that I didn't want to know all the things that "could go, might go" wrong. Having listened to the doctors for the first 33 weeks of my first pregnancy, never thinking Kyle would be born... nor believing that his brothers would be possible... I could imagine enough trouble without the books including any other possible scenarios.

It worked for me... but I'm not about to tell another mom to do it "like that."

I was reading a mother's blog today on needing to ween her baby... and I thought I'd share my story of how I did it... because it worked SO WELL.

The boys are all about 14 months apart in age and I nursed all of them for about a year. Weening the first three was more matter of being in the third trimester of the next pregnancy than anything I did or didn't do. But then Caden had his first birthday and I remember thinking, "This is my last baby, and every "last" for him... will really be "the last for us."

I remember telling Tony about my mental check list: binkies... diapers... strollers... car seats.

He asked, "what about nursing?"

ummm... yeah, there's that too. ** What's HE thinking??**

Flash forward a few weeks...

We got invited by our friends to go to Hawaii for a week... with no kids.

Tony made all the arrangements, including having my sister agree to weening the baby while we were gone...

YEP... I kid you not.

I left all 4 babies... with my amazing sister... who spoiled the bajeebers out of them (with her 7 - year old twins as her helpers) for an entire week. I only agreed to it because Tony REALLY wanted/needed the time, and I figured it was finally time. Caden has always been a pretty easy kid... and didn't give her too much trouble (so she said... probably because I was having major guilt issues).

So... that's how my baby got weened... sorta

(Until, we got home... and I thought I was going to POP... and so he had a little smackeral of some, some. And darn Tony's hide... he just had to go and tell my sister... who was not too happy with me "after she'd gone and done all that work weening him for me.")

Family... I tell ya.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Another Sleepless night...

The night before the 4th of July... I didn't sleep because I was making these...

The next night I couldn't sleep, so I made some of these ...

Then I remembered that my friend's niece was going for a visit to see her new baby girl!

I was so excited to go and buy some cute girlie shoes to send with her! It was my chance to buy some"girlie" things... which I love to do (but rarely get the chance)! And wouldn't you know it... because I was looking, I couldn't really find anything I liked. I hate that!

Since I love shoes, I always bought my niece shoes in our "favorite yellow boxes." I tried to find some cute shoes to send, but this is all I found (and they're way too big, but I had to get something).

Doncha love the box??? Me too... or I definitely wouldn't have bought them.

Since the whole "shoe shopping" for a girl was such a let down, I thought of something else!

Besides shoes, I love to scrapbook. What's great for me is that my mom owns a huge store and I so I have quite a collection of BOY materials. What I don't have... is girlie stuff.

So... I went on down to see my sister at the store... and got all the stuff to make this:

I love it! It's turning out SO cute, and I'm loving all the little pull outs, and bows ...

It's not done... and I'm supposed to be dropping it off soon!

I'm a totally zombie from no sleep... but I work best under pressure and this was a SUPER fun project.

This totally got me in the mood to scrap... so as soon as I catch up on the last 3 days of sleep that I've missed... I'm going to bust out all my stuff and get on it!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Reason 46834 I Married Him

We usually do holidays at our house because it's easy. We generally love doing it because it usually means that we are able to get things done around the house that we have been putting off. But for the Fourth of July this year, with baseball and everything else going on... we didn't think we could get everything together in time, so we decided to keep it low key... aka- not invite anyone. But, at the last minute- we (hmmm, Tony) changed his... I mean, "our" minds and decided... let's just do it!

For me, that means cooking and decorating, which I love to do.... but for Tony, it means cleaning and yard work, and getting to be with people... which he loves (the people part anyway).

I started cooking yesterday... and thanks to Ree ... my dad got his Jalapeno poppers, mom got her apricot dessert, everyone got the flag dessert, and a select few got blue berries with her yummy homemade yogurt that she shared on her blog the other day... LOVE that woman!

The boys got to make they're favorite meat wraps... and a delicious dip that they devoured.

So it went like this... Tony decided we're doing the 4Th at our house Thursday morning before work. I go to Costco to get all the food, and I'm home and cooking by about 11a.m. I continue to cook until Tony gets home at 11:00 p.m., by which point I'm beginning to remember all the reasons we "weren't up for hosting a party." (My house is a mess, and it's not decorated for Pete sake!)

All six of us load up and head to Walmart to get the decorations I insist we need. (And I'm walking around a very crowded store thinking, "what's wrong with these people? Why aren't they home in bed, and what in the world are they doing out so late with their kids? Don't they know it's almost midnight? jeez! ... And then of course, I remind myself that my own 4 boys are racing their carts with their dad in the next aisle.)

Anyhow, somewhere along the way between getting the plates and getting some flags, I get the bright idea that we need pillows that are "4th of Julyish" too. How hard can that be???

I'll just buy a new sewing machine (I've never sewn a stitch in my life), and get some material. After all, how hard can it be to sew a square! I'll just whip some out when we get home, because it's very important to decorate! Right mom?

So, at 3 a.m. my hubby and I are doing just that! He was so great... we watched the instruction video and he finally got it all working for me (because I couldn't even thread the darn thing. I knew I was in trouble when it came with a instruction DVD. My own personal take is that it should have at least come out of the box ready to work for goodness sake. Oh well no.) By 4:30a.m. we had it basically done, all 7 pillows, but not quite. My mother, who puts Martha to shame, came to the house today a few hours before the guests arrived to "get it all finished before everyone showed up." Dad ate, I mean... cooked the poppers and got most of the food ready. My sister came early too... and she brought in the troops... The best kids on the planet = Josh + Cassandra. Josh keeps the boys out of the way and busy playing ... and Cassandra is a miracle worker who pretty much cleaned up and put out whatever we needed.

By the time everyone got here, we were pretty much ready. What a fun day! I love serving people and seeing people enjoying themselves. But most of all... most of all I'm thankful for a hubby that's still willing to do all-nighters with me (like we did back when we were dating)... and put up with me and my "great ideas." And I'm sure thankful for my great parents and sister who still know how to pull together and "getter done." Good times, good times!

Happy 4th of July everyone!
ps- I'll be sleeping in tomorrow for sure!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Hit and Run

As a follow up to my first ticket last week... I was lucky enough to get in my first accident tonight. It was actually a Hit and Run... and as my hubby says, "The hits just keep on coming."

AJ and I were on our way to get Kyle in the "borrowed" car that we're using until the Excursion gets outs out of the shop. (Since we have to get it smogged because of my ticket from a few days ago...) NICE.

As I'm waiting at a light, some YAhoo hits me from the side as she pulls out to get in the turning lane. It's obvious she's not stopping, so I pull over to that lane to follow her. I know... DUMB, STUPID... but in my defense- it was a borrowed car! AJ is the only one in the car with me (Definitely daddy's boy because he's yelling... chase her mom, we can take her- go, GO!)

In one of my finer "stellar mommy moments," I do just that! I proceeded to speed after her (since I'm quite sure there's no cops around when you need them). I honked at her so she'd pull over...because that's what you do when you hit someone with the car...right? You pull over, you exchange insurance info etc... Apparently she didn't get that memo...

But, she eventually did pull over, along with the gang banger dude she was with.


I stuttered something profound like, "You can't just hit somebody and take off like that lady, that's just... wrong! Ummm don't you think, I asked (ever so humbly- I might add?)"
Brilliant, yep... that's me!!!

So... she tells me she's late for work and she doesn't have time to give me any +&^)#&)_# insurance info... and drives off.

Once again, I display my infinite wisdom and continue to follow her... half-heartedly at best because by now I'm thinking... "and what pray tell am I going to do if I actually catch up with them???" hmmm.
There was no license plates on the car (which should have been my first big clue that this might not be a car I should try to follow to try. Since they probably don't have insurance to begin with, and it was probably a stolen car, and they were definitely not the "let's handle this situation calmly" type people.... I should have just "let it go." BUT, that is SOOOO... not my nature!

I'll say this though... I'm very thankful that we weren't hurt, and the car can be fixed (The guy from the dealership was SO cool about the whole thing). As my overly-protective, overly-smothering hubby lectured me on all the reasons why I shouldn't be listening to my 10 year old in crisis situations, and as my adrenaline goes back to normal levels...

I really am thankful, and realize yet again... I'm so fortunate!

Nevertheless... I'd rather go back to my perfect driving record since I've just ruined the tremendous bragging rights I've enjoyed over my husband for the last 18 years... (HOLY MOLY... that's a LONG time)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

College Days

Here's where best friends from College spend New Years Eve every year...

And here's what my hubby and Tracie do NOT need to do to make them any louder and goofy...

and here's what I look like with my favorite people in the world after too much sun because I've watching the Mercedes Golf Touney at the Plantation House...

Tony and I went to The Masters College in Southern California. He got a scholarship to play baseball there, and I chose to go there because when I was in Jr. High, I started going to camp at Hume Lake and fell in love with a speaker from TMC named "Dewey" (of course, I only got to have him as my professor my freshman year - but it was awesome while it lasted!).

We both had an incredible time in college... ahhh, the memories we have! Hardly a day goes by without some fun reference or comment to a memory that stems back from that time of our lives together. I had no worries, no bills, no obligations... oh for those days when life was so simple!

The best part of those college days... are the life-long friendships that started! Since Tony and I are VERY, VERY different... we don't always enjoy hanging out with friends as couples now. Sometimes I'll have friend that I want to go out with, and Tony can't stand the husband... or visa versa. That obviously put a damper on the whole concept of a double date.

But... we have friends from college that are just PERFECT. Tony and Jason played ball together, and Jason and I had classes together. Jason and I are VERY much alike, so we enjoy the same things. We have a lot in common, especially the fact that we love our Sanguine spouses. I love Tracie because she is a female version of my husband... everything I'm not. Loud, fun, outgoing... makes me laugh and takes care of everything. She really is one of the nicest people I've ever been blessed to know - just like Tony!

Those are the kinds of friendships you treasure, because you know they're rare. We were in each others weddings, we spend New Year's together in Hawaii, and hang out whenever we get the chance because ... you talk about good times!

They came up this weekend... we laughed, and laughed! The guys golfed a couple of times while me and Tracie hung out by the pool with all our kids. We reminisced about all the dumb (fun) things we did back then, and chatted about being moms, and work etc. I never thought about my house, or what needed to be done, or what other things we should have been doing.

We just sat back and enjoyed being friends... and I remembered all the reasons that I loved those college days... because just for the few days they were here with us...

I had no worries, no bills, and no obligations... it was all about hanging out with friends!

The only way it could have been better, was if we were in Hawaii... but that's another 6 months away.