Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Xmas!

Merry Xmas from our house to yours! 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Nerf Gun Wars

"Mom - did you get any more double A batteries" (It's 7:45 am on a school day and Ian is supposed to be eating breakfast)
"Not yet. What do you need batteries for anyway?"
"Max's Barricade. It's the only [Nerf] gun that Lucy (Age 4) can load and shoot."

Not sure if I should be over the moon because the boys are including their (very independent) four year old sister in their Nerf gun wars, or terrified that my four year old is going around shooting things with a Nerf gun. What a weird place to be.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Go Cowboys!

Got to sit still for a while today and actually watch a football game, as it was on, commercials and all. Well, about half of it at least. It's so rare these days that we watch football live - and I'm a football junkie so getting the score reports on my phone AS we are watching the game is a treat. Usually I'm out somewhere (soccer), doing something (watching soccer), and I see the game later (after soccer), so live football is a rarity. It was well worth the time to sit and relax and watch the boys beat [scrape by] the Steelers. 

Go Cowboys! 
(You had the better uniforms - we knew you were going to win from the start just because of that!)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012

Meteor Shower!

Saw a meteor shower tonight, and all Tom had to say was "I'm cold." Yeah, cold. Here I was, all excited about seeing the meteors, which I have a TERRIBLE track record of catching, and my stinky husband was complaining that he was cold. I not only saw one, but three separate meteors. It was simply fantastic. Thank you Geminid for flying over my house, but not too close. And yeah, it was kinda cold out - only 32 degrees, but still - METEOR SHOWER.

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Had to go to two different meetings tonight - both at the same time. This month and last seem to be filled with overlapping meetings, which cuts down on the number that you need to attend, but also keeps you out of the loop and makes you play catch up. Fortunately I'm in touch with folks who have attended those meetings, but still, it's a lot of meetings. The next few weeks look lighter - much lighter, so that's a nice break from the crazy schedule.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

And now it's time to get back to the music!

Middle School band concert = simply awesome. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Outside Trees?

Saw an article about decorating your front porch for the holidays a few weeks ago and felt a little inadequate, and also felt very under-inspired to do anything out there. The porches in the article were GORGEOUS and well manicured, and it all seemed so overwhelming. Then I wandered into Target, and saw an artificial tree for $20. My brain went to town with that one (Who knew they had $20 trees?) and we are now the proud owners of said $20 tree, a slew of tiny ornaments, some twist tie hanger things that keep the ornaments attached to the branches  and some fake snow. The yellow cord, albeit visible all the time from every angle, is essential so I'm not going to complain. The lights are cool, the fake snow is cool, the ornaments are cool, and the $20 tree was a total score. 

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Soccer for the bigs and little!

First weekend of winter soccer for the whole family. It was Max's first game of the season,  Ian and Sam's third indoor game, and Lucy's first pick-up ever. 

Indoors for the bigs:
 Max at the Dulles Sportsplex (in white)

 Sam in goal at the Fairfax Sportsplex

Ian (#10) at striker at the Fairfax Sportsplex

And outdoors for the little one: 
Lucy's first pick-up soccer game (she's in the pink coat and blue pinnie)

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Friday, December 07, 2012

6am Lice? No. Not really.

Ugh. At 6am this morning, about 50 minutes before my alarm went off, I woke up. And it wasn't a wake up then fall back asleep wake up, it was a wake up, have that startling thought that you might have this terrible thing called lice, then sit there and wait for the next 50 minutes until your alarm goes off wake up. It was one of those times that you curse your brain for running amok. Normally I'm a HUGE proponent of my brain running amok, but when it messes with my sleep, well, it is not a good thing.  And the lice? Well, we've had lice before in this house - early last year they made a stop here. But this isn't me with lice, this is me with an itchy scalp likely due to low iron and some minor hair loss (I have loads of hair so no worries there), a friend with a kid that has nits (no live lice that she can see but the kiddo does have nits) and this brain crazy of mine running amok. So there I sat at 6:03am, then 6:32am, then 6:45am, cursing my brain. Ugh. But at least I don't have lice. Hopefully tonight will be better, and I'll sleep a little longer tomorrow morning.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Nasty Crabs

Lucy: Mom - Can we go to the beach to see some nasty crabs?

Long pause. Do I even ask her what she means by that or just say yes and let it pass? 

Me: What do you mean nasty crabs?
Lucy: You know, the ones that crab you.

Having a four year old with significantly older brothers immediately raises my suspicions in conversations like this. What exactly did they tell her - that's always the question. And you should hear some of the other things that they tell her, and of course, that she repeats. It's usually at the top of her lungs in the school office, the grocery store, or another public place where I can't run and hide.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Middle of the night mouse hunt? Really?

Klaus, a former resident of our old house - found and
evicted by our two cats and my lovely husband
I have a vague recollection from last night of my husband telling me not to get out of bed - "He has a mouse." Really? Huh? My half asleep brain said "O.K., back to sleep." and that was it. Apparently our cat found the one random mouse that wanders into our house twice a year. He finds them all, so not sure why they bother coming in. Fortunately it's only once or twice a year in this house, and it generally doesn't end well for the mice. But the middle of the night mice hunts are always a big deal - running around, meowing, huffs and puffs - all from the cat. He really stirs it up when he hunts his middle of the night mice. Then come the words of consolation from Tom when he takes the mostly dead mouse from Bunsen. He generally plays with them to death and wants them to keep playing with him, so he's sad when Tom takes them. It's mouse control at it's finest, and for whatever reason it's always in the middle of the night.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

So what do YOU want for Christmas?

Oh how some things change, and some stay exactly the same. I could have written this post just now. My boys are older, and the seven year old mentioned here is now 12, and he is asking for the latest and greatest Nintendo DS thingy. He is all about the DS XL I guess, but they all look the same to me, and just like five years ago, he ain't gettin' one this year. But the difference between the 2007 request for the DS is not only that he owns a run of the mill DS, but also a kindle Fire, and now an iPod Touch. Talk about loaded, they really are set until they are 80. Sigh..the well planned kid campaign is likely to strike again, but this time the kids has his own source of income. Life HAS changed, oh yes, it has. 

December 12, 2007

So what do YOU want for Christmas?

01It's a question that we all ask our kids as the holidays approach. "What would you like for Christmas and Hanukkah this year (we celebrate both)?" I figure that the boys are all old enough now that they canactually give me answers. Boy, was I wrong. I asked the first one I could grab and all I got was "I already told the teacher at school what I wanted." Huh? So I peeked on the list the next day at pre-school and all it said was Pokemon cards. Easy enough - especially if that's all he wants. He's 4.5 and doesn't have a lot of needs, and apparently not a lot of wants either. So, I hunted down the next kiddo. He's also 4.5 and I thought he was going to be a bit tougher. "Well, I want Pokemon cards." Man, this is going to be an easy year for me - all I need to buy is Pokemon cards. I was hoping my luck would hold out and sure enough it did..sort of.

I asked the oldest what he wanted, if he had thought about it at all. "Yeah, Mom. I want a pack of 60 Pokemon cards - but make sure they are the Diamond and Pearl kind." Woo Hoo! Pokemon cards all around - done! "And a DS." Thud. That was my trophy for my perfect record of getting my kids exactly what they want for the holidays hitting the ground and smashing to pieces.
Up until now they haven't asked for much, and we were able to supplement their wants with things that we thought were cool. We avoided the whole "We want a puppy!" thing this go round - they went through that phase a few months ago (we're cat people) and thankfully it passed quickly. But this whole Nintendo DS thing has been in the works for a several months now. "But J has a DS and he has all the cool games" and "But all my friends have DS's and I don't." and "But this one game only runs on the DS and I really want it." Yeah, but you guys have three Game Boys, a Game Cube and a computer, and that's plenty. I'm sure I did the same thing when I was a kid, and I'm sure this is my payback. So, I told him very clearly, "I'm not getting you a DS." Crickets. You could hear them all the way from Richmond. And the look on his face when he finally realized (after me telling him this exact thing five other times prior to this particular conversation) that he wasn't getting a DS was decidedly...normal. Huh. He's seven so I was expecting more complaining. But then again he's seven, so it may be just the beginning of a huge campaign to get himself a DS.
And to make it worse, my hubby questioned the fact that we weren't getting them any electronics for Christmas - not even a single game for their current systems. I'm sure that these three kids have plenty of games and plenty of electronic things to keep them occupied well into their 80's. (For the record they are getting some cool presents, just no electronics.) And I'm sure that he'll have his Nintendo DS on or before his next birthday - after all, we're suckers for the well planned kiddo campaign. Sigh...

Monday, December 03, 2012


The end result of showing a kid a video of a a guy playing a Didgeridoo is that he grabs the nearest roll of wrapping paper, and starts playing. Seriously, sounds more like farts, which made him REALLY happy. He is nine after all.

Sunday, December 02, 2012


On the way to soccer we saw a HUGE flock of birds that were hanging out on the corner. They'd start up as if they were going to fly away, then come back down and settle. They did this several times. almost as if they were at a college football game doing the wave. But suddenly, they all took off - clearly afraid of the crazy jogger approaching. And when I say crazy, it wasn't clinical diagnosis crazy. No, it was the crazy that overcomes you and turns you into a three year old when you run up on a flock of birds. And this was one BIG flock of birds, so he was doing the crazy jogger dance all the way around the corner, happy as a clam. 

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Total band uniform fail, fabulous concert, enjoyable evening.

Procrastination does not pay off when you can't find your tuxedo shirt, your mom hasn't hemmed your new tux pants, and you take tap shoes instead of dress shoes to your band concert. It makes for a very hectic afternoon. But somehow, in spite of our lazy start to the band season and multiple hiccups, Max's Fall band concert was fantastic.

My Coleman's

Lost in the shuffle for a bit, it's time to get back and settle down here. For December, I'll be doing dailies. One little post or snapshop of what going on in our lives. Some days will be more exciting, and some days you'll get pictures of my toes/shoes/socks/whatever.

Today is one of those days when I show you my shoes. It's cold outside now, but not really cold. My summer toes have disappeared and it's all about the fuzzy slippers and heavy hiking boots. I've had these boots for several years now and have found myself wearing them almost every day since I gave up my flip flops.  I used to own a pair of Timberlands, and loved them to death, but they never saw truly cold weather. Back in Texas I didn't know what cold was. Here in Virginia, it's been hovering around freezing in the mornings and late evenings, and when you breathe in, the cold catches your breath. It's not terribly cold yet - that will come later in the season - but it's not flip-flop weather. And these Coleman boots (yes, the camping stove folks make boots and I'm sure a bunch of other things too) have not only kept me in comfort, but they've kept me warm. I'm hoping they will last forever, but I know they won't - they are already starting to show signs of their age. But for now they will keep me in good stead - toes warm and comfy, even when it gets really cold out.

Wednesday, September 05, 2012


Why are there more pajamas than any other type of clothing in my daughter's dirty laundry? Is she trying them on before she decides what to wear to bed then deeming them dirty? How on earth is this happening? This one doesn't make any sense to me. Then again, I'm not four, and Lucy is.

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Footloose Fail

For the first time I dared to watch the newest version of Footloose, and man, was I disappointed. I don't know if it was my age, my adult view of the world, my cynicism, or the terrible script/acting/whatever, but I was really disappointed with the 2011 remake. Did this remake really do the first movie justice? If they trying to introduce this to a new generation, well, they didn't do a good job of it.

I'm not saying the original was perfect. Lori Singer left a little to be desired, the music was from the 80's (some folks, silly as they are, seem to mind that), and the concept itself is a little sideways. But the remake? The characters weren't well cast, and the music was not supportive of the general feel of the movie. Unless I missed something, there were some really flat parts of it, and while Julianna Hough was MUCH better than Lori Singer as far as being an actress, but one can live up to Kevin Bacon. I think that tainted me. The actor that played Willard wasn't big enough - Chris Penn was much larger than Kevin Bacon, so that worked better. The actress that played Rusty was cast because of her look, not her ability to play the role. Dianne Wiest seemed to show so much more angst than Andi McDowell in the role of Ariel's mom and the Reverend's wife, and I absolutely adore Andi McDowell, but I think she was mis-cast. And as much as I like Dennis Quaid, he doesn't hold a candle to John Lithgow. The scene that stuck out the most - the one that failed me and was the final straw - was the scene where the reverend was telling his congregation that they needed to keep the kids that were going to the dance in their prayers. It was totally flat. Some of it was the lack of music - the 1984 movie did a great job of setting the tone with the music. There was no build-up in that scene, and I was left waiting for something more. So, if you haven't seen the 2011 remake, and are a fan of the original, it's not a remake, so don't go in expecting a remake. It's probably entertaining if you didn't see the original, are a fan of Juliana Hough, or if you are a teenage girl, but for me it was just a little, well, it was eh.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

What's on our TiVo's these days - summer edition

Summer TV programming has really ramped up over the past few years. it used to be that the summer was a break from pretty much all of the TV shows that I watched. These days though there are a ton of good shows, and some really crappy shows that air during the summer TV hiatus. So, here's what's on my TiVo's these days:

Olympics - I still have about 6 days worth of the 2012 Olympics recorded. Unlike others that don't want to watch the events after they are over, I LOVE the sports - all of them - and don't mind one bit watching Usain Bolt make his run, or watching the swimmers break records, or the oldest gymnast on the planet compete (and compete well) on rings. I am all about sports, so this is the perfect thing for me.

Episodes - Matt Leblanc is eh, but the show has a great set of characters and is well written. Both Tom and I have enjoyed watching it and it's quirky enough that you don't take it seriously. Turns out that stalkers, producers, real conversations, and slightly crazy folks are very entertaining.

Political Animals - I dig the premise, but the show kind of wanders. It's a limited run series so I'm not sure if they are testing it out or what, but it's entertaining enough to keep it on the list for a bit. And I really like James Wolk. He was in Lone Star and I liked that one too but it was cancelled almost as soon as it began. Silly show and silly premise, but nice looking guy.

Dallas - I'm really up in the air on this one. They haven't quite captured the essence of the original, and that disappoints me. I was really hoping that they'd hit it out of the ballpark right out of the gate. The last episode that I saw was closer to the tension of the old series, but the rest of it is sub-par.  Some of the leads aren't southern-looking enough. Some of the characters are too obvious and shallow. And some of the characters are from the original series and are 800 thousand years old and look like they've been dragged in from the retirement home. That's a bit disconcerting and distracts from the show itself. I spend a good deal of time wondering if JR is going to have a heart attack, or wondering why Cliff Barnes is never shown walking. Or wondering where on earth Charlene Tilton has been hiding for the past 20 years.

Leverage - I have a crush on Christian Kane back from his Angel days. He is tough and manly and is certainly on my "list." The show itself is clever and decently written, so a mindless distraction with some eye candy.

Warehouse 13 - Sci fi fun that's light enough to watch while doing other things. A good match in my book. Miss an episode and you are good (except the one last season where the Warehouse was blown up - that was an episode that you needed to watch to understand pretty much all the rest of it).

A few others that I'm enjoying -
Burn Notice - LOVE Michael Westen!
Alphas - Good little Sci-Fi show
Royals Pains - Silly show, fluffy enough to have on as I'm doing other things
STHYCD - Great season of DANCE!!!
The Newsroom - Good show worth a look
Grimm - I'm digging the whole living amongst monsters and creatures and we have no idea
White Collar - I totally have a crush on Matt Bomer (even liked him in Magic Mike!)
True Blood - It's True Blood. Enough said.
Suits - Good legal show - fill the gap left by the Law and Orders but it WAY more snarky.
Necessary Roughness - I dig sports, and have a total girl crush on Callie Thorne. She's also been in White Collar, Royal Pains, Prison Break, Burn Notice, and was on several Law & Orders, so what's not to like!
Longmire - Still watching this one - I love Katee Sackoff but the show is kind of a one trick pony.

What's on your TiVo?

Sunday, August 26, 2012


I LOVE my hair color. I love it when it's pink. I love it when it's blue. And I love it when it's my regular hair color too. But pink it my true love. I wear it well, and it seems to like me too. I'm still hunting for a decent blue, and right now I have one nice looking blue in, but pink is always my fall back. it's like my security blanket - it's a safe color that I can always come home to.

And this lovely picture was taken by Miss Lucy, photographer extrordiannaire. She generally takes pics of the ground, her shoes, people's butts, etc. But this one I love.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Grocery Shopping

This is what a typical grocery cart looks like for us. And this is also the reason that I use Peapod - too many drinks for me to carry home. The only difference here is that I usually buy four gallons of milk, not just the one. But here I didn't have enough room for four, so one gallon it was. And this time I had a second cart being pulled by a kiddo who begrudgingly was loading up his cart with actual food. Because, after all, we can't survive on drinks alone. But we sure did have enough Gatorade for the week! 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Ever wonder how a Smurf gets around? Well, here you go. 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Why we rent

As I sit here typing this post, I'm reminded why we rent - at least one reason - we aren't responsible for any major repairs. Unless we break something, I pick up the phone and say things like "A tree fell in the yard, can you guys come clear it out?" or "The washing machine isn't washing any more, can you come fix it/replace it?" And the biggie - "The sink/shower/drain/toilet doesn't work/is stuck/is dripping. As I sit here we have a dripping, no, a running faucet in the tub. It's running at a pretty decent clip, and it's sort of disconcerting that the water is running, but at the same time we placed the call, were told that if it's not going to flood anything to hang tight, and that we should call in the AM. And when we call, THEY will send someone out to fix it. My big inconvenience is that I have to listen to the water running, and then overcome the urge to get up and try to turn it off. It's running - Tom tried to get it to turn off, I tried to get it to turn off, and it won't turn off. So I sit here happily listening to the water running, knowing that I'm not responsible for it, and also that I'm thankful that I'm renting. The low rent, ability to walk away if we have a job change or need to move, and the great landlords that we have here all make it so worth the hassle of renting. But ask me again in a few years when our lease is up and we need to find another place. But in the meantime I'm loving the fact that I'm a renter.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The BEST Hair

So Max - my oldest and "He of the very stylish and cool hair" - won an award at school and NEVER MENTIONED IT until tonight. Granted - it's only been a few weeks since school got out, but still - he never mentioned it. His peers voted him the Best Hair in his half of the 6th grade. I was DYING laughing when I saw the certificate - and realized that he never mentioned it because his Dad is constantly harassing him about getting it cut. Tom likes the clippers. He likes the kids to be clippered, and he'd like Max to be clippered too. But for the past year I've run interference, driven him to the local haircut place, and Max gets to have his hair cut however he wants to have his hair cut. 

The thing is, Tom actually appreciates the fact that Max has chosen something other than "just whatever" or "clipper #3" as his haircut style. It's intentional, which meets Tom's requirement for everything from home decor to landscaping to attire. But Tom would NEVER in a million years tell that to Max - you know - "He of the very stylish and cool hair" because he still likes the clippers. So I think it's cool that Max won an award given by his peers in the 6th grade that recognizes not athletic ability or brains, but something different for him. As one friend said to me (in another, unrelated context," maybe he really is becoming a renaissance man, and that's kind of a cool thought.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Return to the Land Of Blog

Returning to the Land of Blog - I've been gone for a while now but it's truly a joyous return. The end of school caught up with me, but the reality is that so did the pain. I'll explain more about that in another post, but I am back, and I'm in a little less pain that before, but I have hope now, and that makes a world of difference.

Since I've been gone we/I:
-finished up 3rd and 6th grades
-wrapped up another successful soccer season
-played in several soccer tournaments
-had our first little leotard in a gymnastics class show
-killed a few plants
-went to the doctor
-went to the other doctor
-went to yet another doctor
-turned to paper plates and utensils when the pipe under the kitchen sink started leaking
-started playing rugby
-had all kinds of medical scans
-learned that I actually like Sushi - just not all the kinds with fish
-went off of several medications
-lost some weight

But most importantly,
found some hope. 

Over the next few weeks I'll get into a little more of what life has been like for me and what the impact of pain is on our family. But I have hope now, so the little bits and pieces of daily life that I've had to abandon might be back some day, and to me that means the world. Land of Blog, here I come! 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

"Coach" Behaving Badly

Last weekend we ran across yet another coach behaving badly. This time though, the coach was carded for his behavior. Did I mention that this was U9 soccer? Two years ago we ran across a crazy bad coach that was over the top. Last weekend we ran into a coach that was arguing with the referee about some calls that were against his team. He told the ref that perhaps she needed to go back and reread the rules, that it was OK to commit this one particular type of (dangerous) play, and that she was simply wrong. We've had this ref before and she's a pretty decent ref - calling fouls and keeping play safe. That's her job - to keep the kids safe and control the game. It's her field, and as we tell the kids, even if she or his is he worst referee on the planet, it's their field and they are in charge. He was not only arguing with the ref, but he was wrong. Our kids were confused, his kids were confused, and the parents were just about done with them. This time, unlike the indoor game that I blogged about below, the coach was called out for his bad behavior. It was a teachable moment though, and Tom took full advantage of it to tell our players once again that it's the ref's field, and she's in charge - even for the grown ups. We didn't end up winning the game, but our kids sure did learn a good lesson. The rules are in place and they are enforced, and there are no excuses for behaving in the way he was behaving. This game was in stark contrast to the previous game where the much younger coach was gracious, pleasant, and polite. Hopefully we face more like him in the future. It is U9 soccer after all. 

March 31, 2010

"Coach" Behaving Badly

SoccerBallPitchDear Rabid Soccer Dad,
Your son plays recreational soccer and I am pretty sure that you enjoy watching him play soccer. You have gone step further and you also coach his team. While this is an admirable thing for you to do (community service always gets high marks in my book), YOU are the reason that some kids quit playing group sports. You turn what should be a fun game (regardless of who wins or loses) and a learning experience (that's part of what the coach is there for) into a caged match battle brawl. These kids are 8 and 9 years old. Maximum participation in youth sports is at age 10, and by age 13, 70% of kids stop playing. The number one reason for them quitting is that "It's not fun anymore."

Last week we played your team for the second time this winter, and while we knew going in that you coached your kids to push, to body check, to foul, and to trip, there was no way to really prepare our kids for this other than to tell them to walk away if that happened, and to go score another goal. At halftime our coach had to remind our kids not to hit back, not to push, not to retaliate at all. What a waste of a game. Instead of making this game a learning experience, our coach spent his time picking his players up off of the field, having them shift around so that the same kids weren't getting body checked all game, and telling them to change their game so that they didn't get kicked so much. And in frustration, mid-way through the second half of the game, your players started calling our players names in order to knock them off of their game. They were losing and getting frustrated, and instead of telling them to play good soccer, and beat us on the field, you encouraged them in your own way and the abuse continued. The ref can only call what he sees, and while he did an admirable job, he doesn't see it all.
We walked away from that game thankful that it was over, not really caring about the score one way or another. We did beat your team squarely, and would have beat them by more if there weren't so many fouls committed. I haven't seen a game stopped so many times at this age level ever.
So imagine my surprise when I saw your kid, and a handful of your players walk onto the field for this weekend's game. We were playing a team from your club, and apparently they borrowed a few players from your team. Common occurrence - we did the same thing on our end. But instead of sitting back enjoying the game as a spectator parent, you had to jump in and start coaching. These kids were having fun, and it was a good game until you arrived. The coach was doing a great job, and their squad was actually ahead by one goal. But as your kids arrived, and as our players saw what was happening, they stepped up their game. Then, from behind I heard "Pass the ball W." W happens to be a player on OUR team. You were attempting to coach (incorrectly I might add) a player on OUR team. Then you came to the sidelines - apparently you weren't getting the response from "your" team that you wanted, and you started coaching right next to the other coach. Up until this point few parents on our squad realized what was going on. I saw you early on and didn't say anything except to our coach so he could be aware of potential problems. Problems did occur.
Instead of standing on the sidelines watching and cheering good soccer (our coach and our parents award good soccer moves from any player on either team with cheers and clapping), you leaned in and "coached." You made cracks about our players, and yelled at the players on your kid's team. Right away our parents asked you to pipe down and let the kids play - like I said the kids were doing fine before your arrival. Instead of backing off or piping down, you actually became confrontational. Our coach had to stop coaching the gameand deal with you and one of our parents so it didn't come to blows. You just wouldn't let the coach on their team coach, and once again the types of things you were encouraging the kids to do were dangerous, not to mention bad soccer.
You are teaching your kids, and the kids that they play against that it's OK to be abusive and that soccer skills are secondary to winning the game. Clearly other teams will beat you, and as you get older you will lose players and will wonder why the team doesn't continue. At some point a kid will get very hurt by one of your players, and you will finally be held responsible for your irresponsible coaching. Until then, I hope that you understand that YOU are the reason that kids stop playing soccer.
Proud Soccer Mom
This was an original DC Metro Moms post.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Four kids and this is the kind of stuff that I find in the wash

Rock. Yes, rock. Not loads of little rocks, but a BIG old rock. And you know who stuck it in their pocket? Miss Lucy. She was thrilled that she found such a nice rock, tucked it away somewhere safe, and then completely forgot about it. This rock is a beauty, and it's nice and clean now too.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012


"Mommy, I think something sneezed on me. And I think it was a gummy bear." - Lucy

Friday, March 16, 2012

Sir Flops-a-Lot

Bunsen is not usually a flopper, but here he was in full flop:You pull a blanket over your legs and Bunsen will be ON the blanket within minutes. Since Tom had his legs in a weird spot, Bunsen couldn't get settled in his normal little rolled up kitty ball. Instead, Bunsen just settled in and flopped across his lap.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

On certain occasions you just have to flip the bird.

Apparently this was one of them. Guess that's what I get for tying him up too tightly.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Hey Dad...

Do you think you can fit through the hole in the back of the chair? -Sam

Now, my response would be something along the lines of "Probably not," or maybe "I'm not going to try - I'd probably get stuck." But Tom's response was "I dunno - let's see!"

Guess what? He fits.

Gotta love a man who is willing to stuff himself through the back of a chair to see if he'll fit just because his kid asks.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Little kid soccer

Ever wonder what soccer looks like when you get a bunch of 3 and 4 year olds on a field with a killer coach that has MAD kid-wrangling skills? They play soccer!

Getting started
Learning a new move
Trapping the ball
Dribbling around

(If you can't spot her, Lucy's in the bright orange short and pink pants. She's Miss No-Matchy Matchy these days.)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Sleeping sweetly

Taking her afternoon nap is so much more fun when she can do it her way. She's all snuggled up in her blankets on the floor and tucked in right behind her door.

Friday, March 09, 2012

Cleat to the face

OUCH! Sam took a cleat to the face and kept on going. At one of his indoor games earlier this season a kiddo did some crazy high kick and missed the ball and landed on Sam's face instead. He went down immediately, clearly in agony. But once he got some ice on it and calmed down a bit he was good to go and finished out the game. After the game I snapped this pic of the bruise on his face. It popped up almost immediately and left just as quickly, but it was crazy close to his eye, so we were quite thankful that it landed where it did and not a quarter inch down on his eye! He's a tough kid, that's for sure.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Everyday Snaps

I've been using a program called Everyday to capture images of myself so that at some point, when I'm bored taking pictures of myself I can make one of those cool videos that shows all the pictures in sequence and you can see how I've changed (or not) over the year. On occasion Miss Lucy pops in on the picture (there's a reminder that goes off each day at the same time) and if she's around, then she's certainly welcome. I have to line my face up in the guides - they make it SUPER easy to do - and so she's squished off to the side when she joins me, but I suspect this won't be the last time she shows up in one of these snaps!

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Sexy and I Know It

If you haven't seen this yet you need to. Bruce Springsteen really is the Boss.

And we love both of them even more for this!

Friday, March 02, 2012

Contemplating Your Belly Button

Out of Lucy's mouth just now:

Ha ha! Everyone has parts.
Nipples and parts.
Look at those cute belly buttons.
Look - baby parts! They are so cute!
This book is funny.
I gonna get another book that is funny.

Yeah, she's three. But it's a brilliant book. Have this one (Contemplating Your Belly Button) along with The Gas We Pass, The Holes in Your Nose, and the classic Everyone Poops. I love my mom for buying these for the boys. She spent hours reading these with them when they were little, and I'm sure that she appreciates the giggles that her youngest grandchild is getting out of them!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Ian and Sam decided to participate in their school's Science and Engineering Expo (squeeeee!!!). The first ideas out of their mouths had to do with things exploding, baking soda volcanoes, and crating machines that would throw stuff. Of course, right on the form it says no baking soda and vinegar volcanoes (not proper science) and no projectiles (too dangerous for the under 10 crowd). So they talked it over with each other, talked it over with their big brother (who had loads of crazy and not quite right for ES science fair ideas) and talked it over with Tom and I, and decided to race Lego cars down a track and see what happened when they added weight to the car. Track building was a little tricky but they got it worked out, the experiment went well, and they wrapped up their project looking like super scientists.
They presented their research (He he he!) at the Expo at school to rave reviews. And on their birthday, to boot! Great job guys! see a future full of loads of science fairs, following in your mama's steps!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Messy Bed

And you wonder how she gets any sleep. Yeah, so do I some days.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Friday, February 24, 2012

Lucy's Butterfly

Mom, draw me a butterfly.
Mom, draw me Sam.
Mom, draw me a doggie.
Hey Lucy, why don't you draw me a butterfly?

Here's the happy butterfly from my little lefty:
You go, big girl!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I have three pairs of jeans where the zipper seems to have completely given up.
One pair is a bit snug, so the zipper stays a little better, but the other two are loose and the zipper just slides down and stays there until Tom kindly points out that my zipper is down AGAIN. Notice I said Tom - I've walked around for HOURS with my zipper down and no one said a peep. So I hopped online and found a simple fix:

(Thanks Maggie Berg for a GREAT idea!)

But I didn't have a round key ring thing that would work, so I grabbed the closest thing I could - a little paperclip:
and that seemed to do the trick! So, next time your zipper makes a run for it, grab a smallish keyring or a smallish paperclip (don't use the bigger ones or the zipper won't zip up high enough), and go to town (without having your undies hanging out)!

Monday, February 20, 2012


We love Skype, and have for several years. Now, we love Facetime too! Lucy wanted to talk to her cousin Nicholas, so we popped online and hunted up Uncle Bill, and Voila! The kids were thrilled, as you can see, to be able to chat with him!

Just how cool is that???!!!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

I {heart} Star Wars!

Why on Earth can't I get a heart in my title?

Anyway, saw this commercial tonight and HAD to share:

Love this one in particular: "Star fighter - that's like a million dollars in gas." "Yeah, that's pricey." He he he. Just spreading the Star Wars love.

Friday, February 17, 2012

What's on our TiVos these days

We have two TiVos in the house - one is mine, and the other is really for the kids, but I occasionally park stuff on it. (Don't judge - I watch a LOT of TV but that's for another post.) All of these shows are in season now, and there's a whole host of cool shows that pop up in the off season for these that we really enjoy (Psych, Dr. Who, etc.). But it's been a long while since my TiVo was empty since they started showing various things at different times of the year. What's on your DVR?

Shameless - new favorite, definitely not for the kiddos but it makes you feel good about yourself and how NOT screwed up you are
Justified - reminds me of Texas crazy and Timothy Olyphant is easy on the eyes
Parenthood - LOVE this one but it makes me cry pretty much every episode
Grimm and Once Upon a Time - not 100% on either of these, and I assume one or both will be cancelled, but I like the idea
NCIS/CSI/Law & Order - All episodes of all of these guys and their spin offs - LOVE the crime dramas
Castle - speaking of crime dramas - MAJOR crush on Nathan Fillion
Robot Chicken - YEA! back on the air with NEW episodes, full of GREAT things to quote and VERY inappropriate (for some adults as well as kiddos!)
Glee/American Idol/The Voice/Smash - LOVE the music shows (mainly the singing parts, not so much the drama) and can't wait for the next one
White Collar - Crushing on Matt Bomer (Neil, of course) and enjoy the mindlessness of it
Raising Hope - LOVE this show - cheeky and irreverent
The Firm/The Mentalist/Fringe - Fun to watch but missing an episode isn't a big deal

What's on the kids' TiVo: (Most of these are clearly for Lucy - she wants to see all kinds of different things on a whim, and so we just keep them all around instead of tapes or DVD's)
LazyTown - Who doesn't love Sportacus (well, Lucy probably doesn't, but I could watch that man flip around all day)
Dora the Explorer - SWIPER NO SWIPING!
Octonauts - It's new and kinda cute
Mickey Mouse Clubhouse - Gotta love the Mouse!
My Little Pony - It's the third incarnation of this horse fest and even more drippy than before
Yo Gabba Gabba - A favorite of hers and tolerable, sometimes even enjoyable for me
Bubble Guppies - Bubba bubba bubba guppa guppa guppa (Lucy's version of the theme song)
Max and Ruby - Ruby and Max (he he he)
Chuggington - It's not Thomas, by any stretch of the imagination
Blue's Clues - We love Steve more but Lucy seems to like them both
Frenemies - That's the boys - not a clue what it is
American Idol - This one's for Max
Pokemon - Most likely NOT for Lucy...let's see...Ian and Sam?
Various version of Zack and Cody/Shake It Up/Lemonade Mouth/whatever tween shows that Max grabs

What Tom watches: Soccer, oh, and soccer. Occasionally he catches a soccer game or two as well. I do catch him channel surfing, looking for soccer. And during football season? The kids shows get bumped as their TiVo mysteriously gets filled with my football games. Love that little TiVo guy!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


What a road it's been. 1,000 posts ago I restarted my blog. It all started up again when we picked up and left Texas for the Washington DC area. Who knows what happened to my old blog, how many posts were written, or even what I was thinking when I abandoned it, but here we are. Five years and all kinds of life behind me, I'm still writing. Some posts are just me dumping thoughts out, some are sharing family time, and some are confessions. I'm not the best writer on the planet, nor am I the most expressive. My writing has improved over the years, as has my typing. But I'm getting it all down - my story, our story, the journey. We've lost folks, gained folks, moved, and grown. Looking back the past five years have been crazy and peaceful all at the same time. I hope to keep writing for the next five years. Never would have guessed that it lasted this long, but hey, it's a journey and I've learned a lot. I hope that you continue with me as I share more adventures, more loves, and more crazies - you know we are all a little crazy here anyway.