Saturday, July 19, 2008


I know this is the third post of the night but I am heading out for a week of camping and needed to get all my thoughts up and posted.  

A warning: some graphic information in the following story.

I have lived in this house since mid-February. I don't have the exact number of days but am thinking it is around 150, give or take. This is important because of what I discovered, much to my dismay, this afternoon.

We have one bathroom in our house that is working. It is upstairs and, unfortunately, the only window is right next to the toilet. This has always caused me some concern but the window is that frosted, privacy glass and we have a paper shade over it.  I know it isn't 100% private as I came home late one night and saw my husband's silhouette through the window. Since then I have tended to leave the light off when I am using the bathroom once it is dark outside. I have serious peeping tom issues.

Unfortunately, I found out today that it isn't at night that the bathroom is most on display. I had gone out to the Westy to get some things for our camping trip. I am walking back to the house and I happen to glance up at the bathroom window and what do I see?? I see my husband. I see his blue shirt, I see his khaki shorts, OMG, that is not his shorts I can see! Are you serious??  Every day I go into the bathroom when the shade is up you can see all of me. You can see my clothes, you can see my lack of clothes, you can see EVERYTHING I am doing. Just think on that for a second.  

This summer we have had the window open quite often because it is one of the few that opens upstairs and we need the breeze. I will go inside, close the window, do my business, open the window and leave. I figure the most that the neighbors have seen is the window opening and closing. Nope, they have been getting quite a show. The best part is the neighbor directly behind us is having construction work, so this last week the house that stares at my bathroom window has been full of men working on his new garage. 

That is just great.  I think I have to move.

The trouble with money

I have to admit I have an issue with money. Not with spending it unnecessarily (really!) but more with thinking I have been 'cheated' out of my money. This tends to only happen when I have cash on hand, which thankfully, is not often.

The first time I became aware of this problem was our first trip to Seaside. At dinner the last night, or second to the last night I can't remember, I counted my money remaining and had less then I thought. I went back in my mind over all of the meals I had eaten, lattes I had enjoyed, and all the taffy I had bought.  I kept coming up with the wrong number. I felt in my gut I should have more money in my wallet then I did. This was very upsetting to me because the only thing I could think of was that my sisters had some how 'taken' my money. Now, I know they didn't do it intentionally but I was quite convinced at one of the meals I must have put in more money to pay for my share of the dinner then I should have. It was only $6 so it wasn't a huge amount but it was very upsetting to me.  Well, I won't go on but I will say that, no, my sisters did not take my money. I had forgotten about the $6 admission fee to the aquarium we had gone to. It was a little embarrassing, and to this day my sister's still tease me about how I felt I had been gip'd by them.

Well, I realized this is a serious problem I have when I went to take my boys out for ice cream the other night. Their dad had a dinner meeting and we were on our own for the night. For a special treat we headed out to Baskin Robbins before going to a park to play. I was so excited to go and eat ice cream with my beautiful boys.  I ordered Jack's strawberry ice cream cone, my rocky road ice cream cone, and a spoon for Micah. When I went to pay my heart stopped! I only had $2, where was my money? Each week my husband and I get $10 for  our 'coffee' money. This can be spent anyway you want but that is our cash to use for treats, mainly coffee. I was going to use the rest of mine to pay for our ice cream cones. I knew I had only gone for coffee once that week and it had cost $3. Where was the rest of my money! 

I sat down to eat my ice cream but could not enjoy it. I spent the entire time re-tracing my steps of the week to find out where my money went. I knew on Tuesday I had stopped at McDonald's after VBS for chicken nuggets for the boys. I did not have my $10 with me and ended up paying with my debit card. That night I went to Bible Study but did not spend any money there. Then, Wednesday, I stopped for a latte because I knew that from 2:30 on it would be a VERY long day. I got a triple latte and handed over my $10 to pay.

That was it! My barista must have taken my $10 and given me change for a 5 dollar bill! I go to the same drive-thru espresso stand and the barista is always the same. On Wednesday he was telling me a long story about President Bush and he must have looked at my money wrong. I was very upset. I was considering if it was possible to bring this up with him. I know $5 is not a lot of money but it was my coffee money for the week and it was gone.  

By the time I came out of my musings over my missing money, I realized Micah was on the table licking the window and Jack had ice cream all over his face and hands. Quickly, we cleaned up and left. I was still very upset about my stolen money and was once again re-tracing my week when I remembered. Oh, yeah. The boys and I went on a walk Tuesday afternoon to Cafe Javasti and shared a butter horn and I had an iced coffee. Oh, right, that is where I handed over my $10 and was given a $5 bill as change. I guess my money was not stolen and I did not have to confront my friendly barista to demand my money back.

I think I need help.

A sister shares...

On the ledge next to the mirror in my bathroom I have this little picture that says: 

A sister shares the memories of yesterday, the joys of today and the hopes of tomorrow

I read it several times a day whenever I am in the bathroom washing my hands, brushing my teeth, putting on make-up. I think of my sisters and agree that they do share the memories,the joys and the hopes. But they also share something else.

The share the snotty email sent late at night when you are tired and cranky.  They share the terrible, awkward family obligations that you know you have to attend.  Knowing that at least one sister will show up at the dreaded family Christmas, or the cousin's birthday that you know you will need a stiff drink to get through, or even an awkward and painful dinner event.  No one else understands what some of these events mean or can even attend. Husbands are not always there based on work schedules but sisters always are. 

We don't always get along or say things nicely to each other but we try. I love looking at the 4th of July pictures from this year and seeing my sisters and me lined up on the curb with our families.  Seaside is mainly about sisters and creating memories that we will laugh about for years to come.  

I am thankful for my sisters, for the memories of yesterday, the joys of today, and the hopes of tomorrow. I am also thankful they are there to call when I am upset, to ask questions about make-up colors, to listen to their bad day or current frustrations with husbands and or kids.  

I am thankful for my sisters.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Four Little Words

My three year old tends to repeat his needs and wants over and over and over. Quite often he repeats himself to the point of frustration.  "I need to watch a show", "I need to watch a show", "I need to watch a show", or "I don't want to go hiking", "I don't want to go hiking", "I don't want to go hiking". When I stop responding to him he will pause say "Mom" and when I say "Yes, what is it Jack", away we go again with what he has already been telling me.

One of his favorite things to say, all day long, is: "I miss you mom". He says this when he wakes up, when we are sitting on the couch watching a show, when we are outside playing.  He tends to follow this with "I'm so glad you came home". Since I am 90% a stay-at-home mom, my usual response is: "I've been with you all day, how can you miss me?". I will tell him that he needs to tell his dad he misses him, that is the person who is gone all day. He will but more often he will turn to me and say "I miss you, I'm so glad you came home". I have to admit I hear it so often I have started to just ignore him. I used to always say "I miss you too" or "I love you" or tease him, but lately I just continue with what I am doing because, honestly, we are together all the time. The chances to miss each other are very few.

Last night I came back from Bible study and went in to check on the boys. Jack was turned all around in bed and laying on his blanket so I decided to move him. I gently lifted him up and placed his head on his pillow and tucked blankie in all around him. His eyes barely opened and he mumbled something. I pulled his pacifier out of his mouth and leaned down to hear him. On a very soft sigh I heard "I missed you mom" as he rolled over and snuggled in.

Oh, Jack, I missed you too.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

"Ma-Ma" or simply "Moo"

During lunch today my little one turned to me and said "Ma-Ma". I was stunned. After hearing him learn the words: car, bark, Jack (really), Da, and of course his first word, Emma. He finally was saying "Ma-Ma".  I am so writing today down in his baby book.

Later as we were watching Curious George and getting ready for nap time, a cow came on the screen. "Mooo" says my little one. What?? Today he learned both "Ma-Ma" and "Mooo". They sound suspiciously similar when he is talking.

I have yet to hear "Ma-Ma" again but all day long if you ask, "what does a cow say?" you will hear: "Moooo".

Sunday, July 6, 2008

"God Bless the USA"

I think the 4th of July is quickly becoming one of my favorite holidays. I've always enjoyed the day but in recent years I have found it is one I really enjoy.  This past 4th was my favorite one so far.

I love the Arlington Parade. There, I said it. I really do. This year I think was one of the best years for the parade. This could be because I was absent from the parade last year but it truly was a really good parade. I was surprised when I looked up to see the final 'float' coming through. I thought "it can't be over yet!". In past years, I will admit, the parade has tended to go on for a long time. Sometimes the amount of fire trucks, ambulances, and tractors does take its toll. Luckily, the logging trucks are no longer involved.

I love sitting on the curb of the street, people watching, nudging my sisters to ask "did we go to school with that person?" or "did you see that??".  The number of familiar high school faces is dwindling but there is always plenty of people watching to keep us entertained.  This year my sisters and I sat there with our husbands and our kids.  We added two more cousins since the
 last time we all sat together and now we have 5 cousins there to enjoy the parade.  
After the parade the fun, for some of us, begins.  My husband and brother-in-law go to the fireworks stand alone, with some cash. Lucky for them, they realized the fireworks stand takes debit cards! No limit!  They bring home bags of fireworks from smoke bombs to crazy flying ladybugs. They have it all.  Watching them light the fireworks takes courage. You want to be close enough to see the show but far enough away to not be hit by any flying objects. It is not good enough to just light the fireworks they must see how many they can light at one time and also what happens when you put them in things like: glass bottles, tin cans, pans, even stumps. 

By the time we are heading home, watching all the fireworks blasting off along I-5, both boys asleep in the back, we are exhausted. But we are already talking about next year, what we want to do, how much more fun our boys will have, and what fireworks we should buy.