Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Only Four More Days

Holy cow, we only have 4 more days until our vacation. I love vacationing to Florida in the fall. The crowds are low, along with the humidity and temperatures. The days heat up enough to make your skin warm but the nights get crisp and the mornings are chilly. Just chilly enough to want to sit on the balcony with a cup of coffee and your most broken in sweatshirt.
It is funny what little things make you happy and bring such joy. Sipping coffee on a cool morning is virtually free but is so enjoyable. Be ready, I will be wearing this subject out until it is time to go. If that sort of thing bothers you, then you may not want to tune in over the next few days.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Growing Up Fast....A Bragging Paragraph

Even though my 'Little Bit' (Marshall) can be quite spirited, to put it lightly...he can also be so loving and funny. He loves to act like he is falling toward you and saying...WHHHOOOAAA! When you catch him, you MUST fall back as if he just knocked you down. Not only is this incredibly entertaining for him....it is quite the abdominal workout. Two birds!!
He is also starting to talk like no one's business. He says big things like..."I want to push the button, mommy" referring to his car seat. He says little things, "My food", "My baby", "My Mommy!", "I want a cookie". He can also kick a soccer ball like nobody's business and throw any object with remarkable accuracy and speed. He loves to sleep with his Barney doll and is orally fixated with his pacifier. He has an infectious laugh, the cutest right dimple, and the cutest, curly, blond locks.
Anyway, I just thought I would mention a few things about him since my last two posts had to do with Michael! Must always be fair!!! YEAH RIGHT!

Mother-Son Dance

Saturday night Michael and I went to our first Mother-Son dance. Don't ask me why but tears have just started to well up in my eyes, weird! Moving on.......It was a luau theme so we arrived in our closest luau attire without spending money on something new only to wear it once. It was a cute and non-pretentious affair. They did not serve any type of Hawaiian food which I thought was a little odd. I did not particularly expect a pig rotating an a stick, char siu, or haupia for dessert. However, I felt one chunk of pineapple was not too much to ask! Instead we had turkey or ham sandwiches, assorted chips, cookies and either sweet, sweet, sweet tea or orange drink (McDonalds). Side note: I may be a Southern Girl but I abhor sweet tea, GACK!!
Moving on from the food (I have an unhealthy obsession with food).....they did have a DJ and face painting which was fun. After everyone finished eating, the music was playing but akin to most dances.....everyone was milling around and no one was dancing.
The DJ was smart and really got the party to started with the Chicken Dance!!! It was ingenious. How can anyone not throw caution to the wind when that song starts up. I surprised myself and let go of my inhibitions and joined in the fun! (Normally this cannot be accomplished without imbibing an adult beverage) I was so proud, new territory. This song was followed by YMCA and other classics like the Electric Slide and the Macarena. Unfortunately, the latter was resurrected. Never been a big fan. So into the night we go, getting buzzed on snow cones and cookies. It was truly a good time.

That Is What Bragging Will Do

As you have read in previous posts, Michael's soccer team is kick ass!! For the first three games his team won and they had not given up any points. I have not been bragging, per se, I was just extremely proud. You see, this is what no one understands...Michael is usually on the losing team not the winning team. This new territory was rather exciting and mystical!! That was until this past Saturday. Can you say 'stacked team'! No I am not bitter.....highly competitive....NO!
To start with, several of the boys heights on the opposing team came up to the chin of their coach. Secondly, they had nary a girl....ok...ok...maybe 2 girls! WHOOOPPPEEE!!
We have 5 girls on our team and only one is worth her weight. The other 4 would most likely play better if they walked on their hands. They definitely could not play any worse.
How horrible I must sound....this is a non-competitive children's league at the YMCA. Let's see how non-competitive you are when every time the other team scored you felt like Brandi Chastain must be taking her shirt off somewhere!
Getting to the point....was there a point!?!? Oh yeah, we were slaughtered. I forgot for a minute. Usually we are doing the beating, this time we were beat 8-0. It was awful, I have never wanted to skulk off of a soccer field so quickly. Michael was pretty bummed but is was nothing a Happy Meal would not fix. Happiness in a box.....so it can be bought after all!

Monday, September 22, 2008

What A Big Boy

I know this may be a strange thing to write about. However, Marshall has the best balance of any just turned 2 year old I have ever seen. (Granted my exposure has been low) He is already walking up and down our steps (16 of them) without holding on to anything and he loves jumping up, down, and off of the bleachers at the soccer field without a fall. I am sure that will happen soon but for now, I am impressed (Doesn't take much, obviously!).
He is also talking like crazy and getting quite bossy. I don't know where that comes from! For example, I have been reading this book titled 'Happiest Toddler on the Block'. It is a great book on how to manage temper tantrums and any other ill will your 1-4 year old decides to dole out. The only thing I do not agree with is all the talk about no spanking....spanking makes kids violent...blah blah blah. Midnote: The first time out chair generation is officially grown up and we live in the most violent time ever!!! But, that is another blog at another time, I think my head just started to spin.
Back on track....one of the suggestions for derailing a tantrum is mimicking their anger. Say they are screaming for a cookie and you know damn well they don't need another one. Instead of just saying no, you should say....
"Marshall wants a cookie, he wants a cookie NOOOOWWWWW!!!"(said emphatically and repeatedly. After the child starts to calm down and look at you like you have 3 heads you say..
"But no cookie right now, maybe after dinner"
Believe it or not, this works about 80% of the time. I think it renders the child speechless to see their parent put on in such a display.
Back to the bossiness.......Because I have been doing this and because my child is extremely intelligent (ha ha) he is now piecing things together and it goes something like this.

Marshall: Mommy, I want cookie. (no tantrum)
Me: You can't have cookie, you already had two! (Still no tantrum)
Marshall: I want cookie NNOOOOWWWW!!

Now, he is mimicking me, mimicking him!! Talk about a total backfire. He even raised his voice and furrows his brow. This is quite hilarious in a child his age and I am sure my laughing is not helping the situation.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

New Dancing Shoes

Well, I finally broke down and bought Marshall his first pair of really good shoes. He has the fattest, flattest feet you have ever seen and it is so hard to find shoes that fit in a regular store like Kohls, for example. Off we go to this little children's boutique in town. It is kinda pricey but I know it will have Stride Rites in wide sizes. Marshall is already in a size 8. I could not believe it when the lady told me that. (How horrible of a mother I am. I have been cramming his feet into size 7 hand me downs for 3 weeks...BAD.....BAD). We pick out this cute little brown pair called Root Beer....appropriate. Marshall puts them on and is so proud of them, he goes around the store showing everyone his new shoes. It is so amazing how children learn this type of behavior without anyone telling them.
Of course, everyone in the store ooohhhed and aaahhhed which fueled his little fashion show. While he was strutting his stuff, I decided to look through the sale rack since it has the only clothes I could possibly afford. I found the cutest shirt that is so apropos. It is a light mint green, long sleeved shirt which reads 'Lock up your daughters' on it. I laughed out loud and had to buy it. I then decided to venture out into the non-sale racks and saw the cutest Halloween overall outfit. The salesperson was telling me how it was reversible. Wow, I thought, 2 outfits in one. I was actually considering a purchase until I got a look see at the price. $65.00!!!! Looks like I will stick with the sale racks where I belong.

2 and 0

Michael's soccer team is quite impressive this year. Yes, I know it is a little early in the season to brag but you should see them. He is in the U10 league...the kids are between 8-10 years old. This makes Michael one of the youngest on the team. It has been so enjoyable to watch these kids mature in their game. Most of them I have watched grow up since Michael started to play here at 4 years old. The kids are actually listening to the coach and doing plays. I know this sounds silly but they look like little adults out there now. Michael's game has really stepped up since last soccer season. He is being a lot more aggressive with the ball and using his body to block big kicks. This past game he played goalie and defense. Only one ball got by him which the goalie had to block. We are so incredibly proud of him. Michael's team has won their first two games. The first game was 5-0 and this last game was 10-0. Now, because I have been bragging, they will get their butts kicked next week. Even if they do, it won't be because of lack of effort or teamwork. GO TEAM!!!!!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

First Real Haircut

Well, I finally did it. The cute, blond, curly locks have made their final appearance. This past Thursday the kids and I went to get haircuts. I hated to cut Marshall's hair but he is a little boy so he should look like one. My hairstylist about died when she learned what her job was going to be. "I cannot believe you are going to make me cut off those beautiful curls", she said.

Just do it!!! Marshall lasted about 6 minutes before getting tired of sitting in the chair. The remainder of the time was him squealing because I was holding his head still. Here is a picture of his cute little boy face, luckily he is still chubby so he still has some of a baby face. Someone at work told me he could be Toby Keith's son. I am not for sure of what he looks like but everyone seemed to agree. Who knows, maybe he is and that is my little secret!!!! JK
I was next to get my hair cut which involves not one iota of relaxation when a two year old is systematically dismantling the place. I could tell the other lady was getting aggravated and I told my stylist how sorry I was. She said it was not a big deal. I then told her it was very obvious of how the other lady felt about my child. Apparently, older people forget that kids are kids. Especially when they are only 2! That totally pissed me off. I wish I could afford a nanny to watch the kids while I went to the salon but that is a fantasy and my life is reality!!!!!

Monday, September 8, 2008

I Feel Like Crap

Just a quick evening note, I feel like total crap. I have no idea what is wrong with me. If it was a different time of year, I would almost think I have the flu. No fever just sore throat (no cough or congestion) and my entire body aches. My neck, between my shoulder blades and low back are eternally sore. The big sign is my skin hurts. You all know what I mean. When you change clothes or go to the bathroom......just the feeling of your clothes scraping your body is brutal. Luckily, I bought some Advil PM to take after I put the kids to bed. Hopefully, this will do the trick.

In addition to that, I have to address the fact that Michael pulled 3 cards today (something you do when acting up) and he made 2 D's on his work. One was in Math of all things, he currently has an A in that subject. Talk about some hellacious timing. Lord help me!!!!

The Purge

Oh, how much great satisfaction I get from a good purge. No I am not talking about the second act of the binge/purge eating play...I am speaking of purging my house of a ton of unwanted stuff. I get this strange thrill watching Mike take garbage bag after garbage bag down the steps to be carted away to Goodwill. And make note, I don't send crap. If I would not let my kids wear it, then it shall not go.
Overall, we sent 5 garbage bags full of women's, men's, boys and toddler clothes to the local site, yesterday. I feel cleansed by the powers, if you know what I mean in a non-blaspheme way. Now I need to tackle the clothes I want to sell on ebay, holy crap!! Believe it or not I also enjoy this in a sick twisted kind of way. Yes, I know I have issues but accepting them is the first step.....or is it changing them???? I forget!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Fall Fest On The Town Square

Fall Fest is an annual event in Cookeville which encompasses about 3 square blocks. They have 2 separate live music venues, lots of jumpy things and rock climbing walls for the kids, carnival food, BBQ, and artsy craftsy things you can buy. Plus, it is free to roam, watch and listen. For the past few years, Fall Fest has been a hot, humid, grueling event which usually leaves all of us tired and sweaty.
This year we had a welcomed new experience. It was in the upper sixties with virtually zero humidity. We bought the kids some tickets so they could do some of the kids things. All of the jumpy things were manned by college kids who were all super cool. Marshall went into Toddler Town (2 tickets) and had a wonderful time. Since there was not a line, the guy let him jump for 20 minutes. He even got out a couple of times but immediately wanted back in. I tried to give the guy more tickets but he said don't worry about it. The same was true for everything Michael did. The ticket taker person would let him slide down or jump forever and never make him give more tickets. It was sweet.
The most expensive play thing was the rock climbing wall. (5 tickets) It was about 30 feet high and we could hardly get Michael off of it. It took him several attempts but he finally made it to the top. The sad thing is he was one of very few that made it to the top. Some of those kids could barely make it 10 feet before they would let go saying they were too tired. WOW!!!
O.K. maybe I am bragging just a bit but this is my blog you know.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Jets Are Scary When Water Is Low

Marshall has taken a bath in the master bath since virtually the day he was born. He and Michael have their own bathroom but it is so much easier to get things done (and still keep an eye on the kids) when he is taking a bath in my tub. For the longest time, the jacuzzi was only filled about 1/3 of the way, for obvious reasons, when Marshall was bathing. Which means the jets were never turned on.
Now that he is older......when Michael is in the tub with him.....I have been filling the tub up all the way so they could turn the jets on. As anyone who has any type of jet tub knows.....turning them on with bubble bath...accelerates the bubble making productivity by a nano level. It is 'Wild and Crazy Bubble Time.' Marshall has not only gotten used to this bubble making machine.. he has also learned which button to push to turn them on.
So, this evening after Fall Fest (please see next entry) I put Marshall in the tub. Since it is so late, I only fill it up 1/3 of the way full. If you have been paying attention....you know what comes next. As a sidebar for anyone who has never had a jacuzzi tub....if all the jets aren't covered when the on button is depressed....whichever jets are not covered with water will spew like 'Ol Faithful.' While I was washing my face I hear a mechanical noise and a scream. Marshall had taken it upon himself to turn the jets on. Not knowing he would be pummelled by the uncovered jets like a fire hose.
Guess what.....this scared the ever loving crap out of him and up, up up.....was all I heard after that. Lesson learned!

Michael Sings To Relax

For anyone who reads this next entry, you must promise to never mention it to Michael. If you don't think you can trust yourself, close this immediately! I know certain things my children do are not as cute and funny to the world proper as it is to me. However, this is funny.
When most people go poo (#2 for those who don't know what pooing is) they need something to relax during this event. Some people read. Some people play electronic Yahtzee. Some people just stare at the wall (which is the weirdest choice of all). I bet no one does what my son does......he sings! I know it is strange to quietly sneak up to the outside of the door when Michael is pooing but the entertainment factor is way up there.
For example, today's a capella performance was 'Don't You Forget About Me' by Simple Minds. This has an exceptionally deep meaning for my generation as it conjures images of Judd Nelson walking across the football field with his fist pumped in the air. (For those of you who have no idea what I am talking about, you are too young to read this blog!) Ahhhh, the memories.

I have seriously digressed...........

Anyway, it is weird but comical to hear your 8 year old resurrecting this song. Especially on the toilet! But he totally ruined my walk down memory lane when he concluded his rendition
with........the remainder of the J.C. Penney commercial!!! Those kids today!!!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Cougar Run

Today is the big day for the annual Cougar Run at my son's school. This is the big fundraiser. Did I say big? I mean HUGE. The school averages between 50K and 60K every year. This money goes directly to the school, 100%. I like this type of fundraiser 10 times better than selling crap and the school gets maybe 50% of money earned. The run works like the multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy runs I participated in as a child. You find people to sponsor an amount of money per lap or a one time donation. I usually just write a check for $200 or so because I hate to have my son out begging for money. His school is k-4th and is a public school. However, the type of teaching and scores that are in that school......it is often called the private public school. The school is good because it is loaded with caring teachers and attentive parents.
I am excited about today because I know how excited Michael is. I get to watch him run then it is off to the picnic to take pictures. A local photographer (Amy Callahan) and I are in charge of taking pics and showing them on a slide show during awards night in November. Since she cannot be two places at once ( I don't know why?), she is taking pics of the running and I am taking pics of the picnic since they happen concurrently depending on your grade. I love being a part of something so big and rewarding for the school. Hopefully we will raise lots and lots of money.

Communication Is Key

It is so neat to experience the budding language of a toddler. I know this can be very frustrating, too. However, I am now starting to get in tune with what Marshall asks for and it is the coolest thing to see the look on his face when I actually do what he asks.
I know when he wants to go swing or slide, he asks to take a bath and at times asks to go 'night, night.' (My personal favorite). This morning I was getting dressed and Marshall is already put together for the day. He comes to me with his pajama bottoms on and says, "pajamas on, please." I put them on over his clothes and he was as content as can be. As a matter of fact, he is rolling/lounging in the floor beside me this very minute in his pajama bottoms and letting me type this entry. That is a rarity. I wonder how many times in the past he has asked such a simple thing and I did not comply because I had no idea what he was saying? These past occurrence almost always ended up in a total meltdown, of course.