Sunday, March 29, 2009

Weekend Update With Angela B.

My mom was up to visit for a few days and as usual, the time flew by. She would make the best Nanny ever....I truly wish I had the money to pay her a BIG salary and hire her on full time. My life would be a million times easier but one caveat would kids would be a million times more spoiled. When she is here, I usually try to spend my free time with home improvement projects and that list is growing rampantly. Most of these projects involve the outdoors 1. Killing the clover/fertilizing the yard, 2. Rearranging my entire back flower bed which will involve tons of digging ( I love to dig, the more dirt under my nails....the better), 3. Pressure washing the patio, 4. Mowing the yard. But, since it was raining outside Saturday....I had to cross things off my indoor list 1. Tiling the garage wall (only the first 3 feet from the floor), 2. Tiling my backsplash in the kitchen, 3. Painting my bedroom with Sherwin Williams (walls: Portabello; Ceiling: Rainwashed), 4. Painting my son's bathroom with that uber resistant scrubbing paint, 5. Recovering the cushions of my dinette set. Seeing as the later of the five involved the least amount of mess, I chose it. Now, I have never recovered anything.....much less attempted any type of upholstery project but why not. If I can install dimmer switches and light fixtures, how hard could it be to slap one type of fabric over another.....oh, and adding more padding. My butt requires more cush for the tush since I don't have enough of my own.
Well, not to brag or anything but the chairs turned out GREAT. I am so pleased. Obviously, if one were a professional...they could tell. But, you all know my theory......if you don't like something in my house, you may exit the same door you entered. Needless to say, my Saturday ended with me being satisfied. I actually accomplished something on my list. The cherry to my Saturday sundae was watching Dwayne Johnson host the Kid's Choice Awards on Nickelodeon. Michael enjoyed the awards.......mommy enjoyed The Rock.....abs, guns, Lordy!!
To further cement my Dwayne Johnson 'bifecta'......I decided to take Michael to see Return To Witch Mountain for a Sunday matinee. Removing any bias for an extremely muscled man...this was a really good movie. Sarcasm abounded, which I love. Based on the poll taken from the kids that attended with me.....4 out of 5 stars.....highly recommended. All and all, a great weekend. It was too fast as usual....but great.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Friday Fill-lns

Wow, this has been a wild week. I have been extremely busy working three different places and my age is definitely showing. I was so tired last night, it was a struggle to form a sentence much less sit upright. My mom is staying at the house through Saturday to watch the kids during Michael's last two days of Spring Break. Thank goodness! I was able to sit and veg when I got home yesterday. I worked at the hospital from 6:30 to 3:15 then I had two home health patients to see. Of course, they both had ancillary things that needed to be done and the office closed at 4:30 so I could not complete ANYTHING. I hate having all those irons in the fire without pulling at least one out and people keep adding more and more and more. Alright, enough of my pity party.

1. "In a hole in the ground there lived a tiny village of peaceful and loving earthworms."

2. " Life is sometimes not fair but that ain't no matter."

3. "After dark the rain began to fall again, I opened a window and snuggled up with a cup of coffee and a good book."

4. " The sound of clanking chains and a scream came from the hold of the Spanish galleon."

5. "There was a hand in the darkness, and it was frantically searching for the light switch."

6. "Accidents ambush the unsuspecting, careful planning rewards the enlightened."

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to spending time with my mom and crossing things off my to do list, tomorrow my plans include getting little Marshall together with his girlfriend and Sunday, I want to do whatever comes my way.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Our Second Day of Vacation in the Wilderness

Now, don't get me wrong, this a great place to go for vacation but in moderation. Friday through Sunday morning was plenty satisfying but, as everyone knows, I am easily pleased. I hate to use the over stimulated phrase again but I feel it was applicable to all of us. LOUD LOUD LOUD. Oh, and for all of you guys who don't know, I am a hotel snob and the room was rather small which stirred up just a hint of claustrophobia in me. Two queen beds, a vanity, makeshift kitchen consisting of a bar sink/microwave/dorm room fridge/2 burner stove, a vanity, two person table with chairs, love seat, and a dresser with rather large LCD television . I know that sounds wonderful and it was. BUT, when the closet in your home is almost as big as your hotel room.....there is a problem. I barely felt as if my arms could stretch out. Since the hotel room face time is limited, I let all of this slide!
The fact that I am an only child and grandchild....I tend to be a little demanding with a touch of compulsion. Like most of you did not know that fact. So, on Friday night I was already conjuring up a plan....a strategy, if you will.....on proper lounge chair preservation based on the sun and the axis of the earth. As soon as the park opened, I had Mike take down two beach towels and reserve two different lounge chairs in juxtaposition from each other. This way I could get optimal sun time regardless of the position of the Earth in respect to the sun! However, that was not good enough for me. When Marshall and I arrived down there, I threw my tank top over the back of a poolside Adirondack chair. I know, I know extremely selfish but that is how it is sometimes. We stayed at the park until four and headed up to the room to get cleaned up. When everyone was ready, we headed to the go-cart tracks. The place we went to was really neat. They had several tracks based on age and a miniature kiddie amusement park. It was perfect for Marshall. While the two big boys rode, Marshall and I hit the toddler rides. He had a blast and so did the other two. We were going to go out to eat after that but everyone was so dang tired we opted for Krystal's. Yes, I know it sounds strange to be a hotel snob but not a food snob but that suits me to a tee. I have a secret place in my heart for those baby burgers!
We ended up leaving on Sunday after only two hours of water frolic. Like I said earlier, one can only take so much of this place. Here are some Saturday night pics and Sunday morning pics. Notice the look on Marshall's face on the last picture. That says it all in regards to the stress level.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Where To Begin, Our Vacation Day One

This is going to be a really long blog therefor I am apologizing ahead of time for all the rambling and poor grammar!!
We finally arrived in Sevierville at one and our room was ready early. Thank goodness. We go upstairs, unpack and get our bathing suits out. I hear Michael say, "That's great". I knew immediately what that meant....he forgot to pack swim trunks. Yes, I am mean and make my 8 year old pack his own bag but I am all about early responsibility. When you will be 9 in three months, you should have the ability to pack your own bag for a two day trip. Ok, back to the story. I put normal clothes on, called the concierge desk and headed to Kmart after he gave me directions. Water fun......on hold!
We were able to grace the waterpark with our presence around three. It was soooo loud. Imagine this....1. The roar of all the people, 2. The thunder sound one ride made every minute, 3. The metal fire bell sound that alarmed when the 750 gallon bucket was getting ready to tip, 4. The buzzer that went off every 15 minutes to let everyone know the waves were starting up, 5. Helicopters flying overhead constantly giving tours of the mountains. I was overstimulated to say the least. I felt like I was in Grenada!
Alright, we stay at the park for three hours and the kids had a blast. Michael's favorite part was a tie between the surfing thing and the water slides. Marshall LOVED the wave pool. I personally was surprised. Here are a few pics of the surfing and the wave pool.

We finished the day with dinner at Ruby Tuesday. I know we should eat somewhere different when on vacation but I am leary of doing such. Michael took pictures of everything in the restaurant, including our food. Here we all are at RT chowing down.

Friday, March 20, 2009

The Fun Begins, Well Sort Of

We started out from the big town of Cookeville an hour later than I had wanted. No sweat, I didn't want this vacation to be regimented, I wanted it to be fun. It is our tradition to eat at IHOP to officially kick off Spring Break. I have included a pic of Meanness and I before we ate. We were able to check in 3 hours early which was wonderful and we have already played in the surf for 2 hours. Michael did the surfing thing and was impressively skillful. Nothing exciting going on right now. I am just killing time while Marshall sleeps and the two big boys are at the pool. The peace and quiet is wonderful.

Friday Fill Ins

Well, another week under the belt and here it is Friday, again! I am writing this entry rather quickly because I need to get my butt upstairs and pack. Yes, we are leaving for vacation in 2 hours and no one is packed except Mike. Does that surprise you? If you knew me and hubby at all, you would know that is about par for the course. Mike is the uber prepared, always early guy. I am the wait until the last minute, fly in at the last minute (usually the last minute is late) kind of girl. That's just how I roll! So, I am standing at the kitchen counter typing this thing and getting absolutely nothing accomplished. You can tell it is really bothering me. Must be because I have this great tan. Bronzed and ready to don a bathing suit and play at the waterpark. T minus 6 hours until it opens. Even though this is a mini-vacation, I am still looking forward to it. Michael still thinks we are going to Chattanooga instead of the waterpark in Sevierville. I cannot wait to see what he thinks....furthermore, I cannot believe I did not blow the surprise!

Without further is time for Friday Fill Ins......

1. Why do we have to make tough decisions during our lifetime?

2. Subtle tics are now habits.

3. I have the best spray tan going on right now!

4. I had never heard the phrase "Buckle Down" and it not making me mad! (My mom used to tell me this all the time when I was not 'performing well' in school!

5. Reading too much into things the way I always do.

6. How was I to know how everything would turn out.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to chillin' poolside, tomorrow my plans include reading, relaxing, waterpark frolic and Sunday, I want to play in the wave pool a little longer followed by a safe drive home.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Girl's Night Out

I love Girl's Night Out. Yes, it is capitalized because it is an event of notoriety. I am not talking about a drunk fest of women around a table needing a taxi ride home. I am speaking of a group of intelligent, wonderful women who have incredible insight into life's weird eccentricities. Well, that may be going too far. However, I can assure you the conversation is never dull and time flies at warp speed when we are all together.
I used to want these gatherings to be huge...the more the merrier. Now, I prefer a small, more intimate group of girls. The conversation flows better and no one feels left out. I hated to do it on a Sunday night but Spring Break officially started last Friday and one has to take what one can get. With everybody's vacations overlapping, it seemed to be the best time.
We didn't get any world issues settled, no transcendental moments or speaking in tongues. However, we were able to get the ball rolling on a girl's summer vacation. One of my friends has a family member with a condo close to Palm Beach. SWEET. We're there! Everyone felt this would be something they would not only like to was something they deserved to do. Hee Hee!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Ancient Chinese Secret, Ahem..Rural Secret

As most of you know, I work with the geriatric population in a rural town. The thing about living in a rural is surrounded by other teeny, tiny rural towns which do not even have a post office. (That is my litmus test on how big your town is and if it even qualifies as a "town"). Growing up in Nashville, I had heard of Cookeville but none of it's subsidiaries such as.....Monterey, Pall Mall, Double Springs, Algood, Crab Orchard, Rickman, Allons, Monroe, Gainesboro, etc. Let me guess, none of these cities ring a bell. To give you an idea of how rural some of these surrounding areas of the patients I have right now is in her 80's and still does not have running water. She carries buckets of water from the well to wash, cook and bathe. WOW!! OK, back to my point. Working with this type of population in this area brings on a lot of advice. Mostly "wife's tales". I discount most of them simply because of the danger which may or may not be implicated by performing said ritual...i.e. giving a toddler whiskey, something with bat wings, or eyes of newt.
Recently, one of my patients overheard me (like that is hard to do with my loud mouth) talking about my little one's cough. I was complaining how it was keeping him up at night and how can one heal if one cannot sleep. She explained an easy way to stop the coughing without shoving a bunch of medicine down his throat. Simply coat his feet with a thin layer of Vick's Vapor Rub and put socks on him. Easy enough, I thought. Even if it does not work, it is harmless. IT WORKED! I thought it was mere happenstance until the next night I did not do it and he coughed like crazy. The night after that I used it and no coughing. Today when I put him down for a nap he started coughing immediately. I performed my pedal foot massage with vapor rub...the coughing ceased and sleep ensued. SWEET CHICKEN!
I had to try it with and without on multiple, consecutive nights. That is the uber scientist coming out in me....sorry. However, based on my non-biased test subject, single blind study with few variables...I am giving it..........................I really think it works. Coughing did not ensue until around 4 or 5 in the morning which meant a decent rest for Marshall and ME!
Just a note, I did read in my Parents magazine today that Vick's Vapor Rub should not be used on children under 2. Please keep that in mind before using

Friday, March 13, 2009

Friday Fill-lns

Only one more week until my vacation. Although it is only 3 and a half days long...I am still very, very excited. Michael still doesn't know we are going to the indoor water park in Sevierville. I have kept this secret rather well. GUESS WHAT, IT IS FRIDAY!!

1. When I look to the left, I see diagrammatic posters of the spinal nerves and the vertebral column.

2. My bedroom is the room that has the best view in my home.

3. Let it work itself out, life has a funny way of doing that.

4. Power shopping done dirt cheap!

5. PAYING TAXES is a responsibility that all qualified citizens must share.

6. If you have any opinions feel free to keep them to yourself.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to I have no idea what I am going to do, tomorrow my plans include working until 11 (booooo) but at least I have a job and Sunday, I want to relax with my kids.

Monday, March 9, 2009

I Just Can't Get Enough

Just when you think it could not get any find out tomorrow will be 5 degrees warmer! I was working at a local nursing home today and I thought to myself....why in the hell am I sitting in the basement of this place when I could be outside. I just couldn't stand it. I clocked out.....did a re-cert on a home health patient on the way home....back to the house I went. I changed into getting sweaty/dirty clothes and hit the pavement. Boy, it had been a while...full of zest I was initially going to run 45 minutes but after 2 miles I thought (being thin does not equate to good cardiovascular health) heaving and puffing is for the birds so I stopped. Give me a break, my Ipod was not charged so my music incentive was non-existent. That makes a huge difference, ya know.
Afterwards, I picked up Michael at his friend's house and stopped by Lowe's to buy some Crepe Myrtles....can you believe they had NONE!! I was thoroughly disappointed because 2 fir trees need a new home and the Myrtles need the fir trees' old home. Oh well, so I quenched the need to plant and cultivate with cooking. I roasted two Cornish game hens on the grill and the boys chowed down. Michael (my eldest) said this was the best chicken he had ever had. Sweet!
My 2 miles a day of running thing has to stick because vacation is less than 2 weeks away and I really need to dispose of 4 pounds. Why do sausage biscuits have to be so good....because they are the devil, that's why!
I am very excited about tomorrow. First, I get to ride my bike to work and that is the greatest mental therapy one could ever have. Two, we close on our refinance which is saving us $400 a month and with job changes....this is more than just fairly significant.
Well, I hope Michael enjoyed his 4 day weekend...thank you very much Mr. Flu. I think I am jealous of my 8 year old's that bad!!!???

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Our Day of Firsts

What a glorious day we had to frolic in today. Light breeze, mostly sunny, warm....ahhhhh!! The perfect day to have all of the springtime firsts and I am the first one to admit......I am infected with spring fever and it is a little itchy!! Today started off dreary but once the clouds cleared was time to don the shorts, flip-flops, and a short sleeve shirt. Sans to battle the landscape beds! I only had time to clean out the beds which line the back of the house and they look soooo good. I also raked part of the back yard due to the scattered leaves driving me crazy. I soon abandoned that task and decided to hire someone to come out next week to finish. It is not that I am lazy but that is hard, arduous work and I have other things in the yard I would like to do instead. So here is my list of firsts......
1) I earned my first blister of the season on my hand after raking for 45 minutes....yes I had gloves on
2) I attained my first light sunburn (remember sans sunscreen) and it feels good in a sick twisted way.
3) Marshall had his first experience playing in a pile of raked leaves (Oh, the innocence of childhood)
4) Michael had his first experience successfully flying a kite (My friend Amy was over with her little girl, Marshall's girlfriend, and she brought everyone kites)
5) I took my first shower this evening with dirt under every fingernail.


Friday, March 6, 2009

Friday Fill-lns

Well, another week has come and gone without much fanfare. There is a lot going on per se but I don't want to share a lot of it just yet. It is nothing bad....actually...if all the planets lined up correctly it would be very, very good. I will just say has to do with a job interview for Mike today. It is a long shot so I am trying not to get too excited. Anyway, if you happen to read this before 1:30p.m., please say a little prayer for whatever is supposed to happen---to happen.
Oh, and it is going to be an absolutely marvelous day today. If I would have gotten my big ass out of bed earlier this morning I could have rode my bicycle. I am only working half a day today since Putnam County schools are closed today and tomorrow. Darn the luck my half day falls on a gorgeous, sunny, 75 degree day....booooo!!!!!
Now, enough of that........

1. Buying groceries for a couple and their little baby in front of me in line because they were starting to put stuff back (including a "My first Christmas" ornament ) because they did no have enough money was my last random act of kindness.

2. Another place, another time, another nexus of the universe.

3. Love conquers all in matters of the heart.

4. Coffee, tea or Diet Coke.

5. I hate going separate paths.

6. Our complex world reminds me that there is God.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to playing outside/riding bikes and making tacos, tomorrow my plans include enjoying, enjoying, enjoying the beautiful day and Sunday, I want to go to Murfreesboro for my nephew's first birthday.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Weekend ReCap

Just when you think time could not possibly travel any does! The weekend has already come and gone and here it is Tuesday. I barely remember any of it anymore.

I did not get to see my kids at all on Friday, or so it seemed. Michael woke up Friday morning around 5:30 running into our room screaming. (Have I mentioned he is deathly afraid of thunderstorms). The wind has this uncanny knack to always blow toward the window in his bedroom (out of the north) and he thinks the world is coming to a tragic end. Once I calmed him down.....I realized he was burning up with a ear probe proved it...103 degrees. He snuggled down into our bed as I finished getting ready and left for work.
I arrived at work at 6:30 and left at 3:30. On my way home I had to do a discharge visit for a home health patient. I got home around 4:30 just to change clothes and head to the school. (By this time my mom was at the house). Remember, Friday night was Olympic day at school and yours truly was in charge of coordinating 30 people in two shifts at 3 separate locations. I went to school and checked all the locations and tables. Luckily Mrs. Stanton had already prepared everything. My volunteers started to show and I instructed them on what to do. Believe me it was incredibly simple and all my moms where able to figure it out.
Since I did not volunteer for a specific time, I was able to roam around school and catch up with a lot of people. I love that....I am truly a social butterfly!
Anyway, I left school at 7 only to return home, change clothes and go to Spankies. My friend Michelle was turning 40. We were a little late (as usual). My goodness, I have never seen so many people at a restaurant birthday party. However, I am not surprised. Michelle is a wonderful person and surrounded by many people who care for her. We knew about 20 of the 30 people so I felt comfortable. I also felt very TALL. As you know, my boots made their debut. All 3 inches of them.
Saturday morning, Michael woke up feeling much better. Still a little sluggish but all in all doing well. I was able to spend most of the day with my mom and kids. That was nice since I had barely laid eyes on them Friday.
Sunday, we were greeted with 2 inches of snow and two very excited kids. This was good 'packing' snow if you know what I mean. Around 10:00, everyone bundled up and went outside to build a snowman. Marshall actually withstood almost an hour out in the snow....18 m.p.h. wind and all. The snowman was huge and had all the usual accoutrements. When the kids came in I had hot cocoa and hot buttered popcorn ready for them. Unfortunately, the wind blew the snowman over about 30 minutes later and Michael fell apart. I told him to "suck it up" in my usual motherly, loving way!!! :)
We finished the evening by blowing up the snowman's segmented torso with fireworks. I know that sounds totally redneck and I am sure my neighbors were mortified at our display. Whatever!! It was fun and produced a huge smile on Michael's face. Marshall was just scared with all the noise.
So, that was the weekend in a nutshell. I am extremely committee down and one to go. The only difference is, this next committee is being formed and delegated by ME! It is for the environment and you all know I pet trees a little. Earth Day is coming soon! I have two volunteers already and have not even put my proposal together for the principle. How cool is that?! I am seriously digressing. Have a great Tuesday.