Happy Birthday to me!

So, today is my 31st birthday. My dad called me this morning and asked if I felt any older. YES! was my emphatic reply. I went out on Saturday night for a friend's bachelorette party and 4 beers and some (okay 10) jello shots later and I was smashed with a killer hangover on Sunday. ALL. DAY. LONG.

It started as a hangover and after sitting at the planetarium with my kids and husband and seeing them spin the stars around faster and faster, and making me want to puke, it turned into a migraine. Which made me want to puke.

I'm too old to do that folks.

So, we move onto today. My birthday. I love my birthday. I'm seriously like a small child counting the days until my birthday. Now, I just do it in my head instead of on paper and tell everyone. But, that ticker is there because it's MY. DAY.

I got my tattoo from my husband for my birthday. Well, probably more correctly is I got a tattoo from me for my birthday and told Chuck not to buy me anything else since it was so expensive.

But, that doesn't mean that I don't want to CELEBRATE my birthday. So, yesterday, when he asks "Do I still have to get you a card and SAY happy birthday tomorrow?" I was a little pissy. And today, when nothing (beyond an e-card) is said...and nothing is done when he comes home to remind the kids to tell me happy birthday and nothing is said about small little gifts from my kids to me or a cake or nothing. I was hurt. Depressed. The weight of the world on my shoulders. I know, I acted like a child, but like I said, I love birthdays.

But, just for the record, I'm a huge BIATCH.

How could I think that my husband, whom I know loves me dearly, could forget me is beyond me. But I was sure he had, so I sulked around for an hour till I had to go to work. Again, childish for sure. I'm not saying I'm proud of my behavior.

But, at 7:00 pm when the staff at my work threw me a little party with cake and ice cream who shows up with flowers from Elizabeth, a massager from Luke and a framed piece of Zachary's artwork and all 3 kids but my husband. With chinese for dinner for me.

*smooches* I heart my husband. Seriously. Truly. Love this man.


Beware. Rants ahead. And a couple bright spots.

Ugh. I promised Chuck I would blog on my bad days instead of unload it all on him. So here's my unloading on the unsuspecting internet.

First, I started my period for the first time in a couple months. I feel like I'm back in freaking high school with the EXTREME irritability, cramping, back ache, bloating. Ick. Seriously, it's no wonder my parents said I was a complete bitch during high school during my periods. I hate me right now. Plus, I want to eat EVERYTHING in sight. Normally, I have to work to get in 1600 or 1700 calories a day. Yesterday I was easily pushing 2300. Not good for the weight loss.

So, I stayed home from work yesterday. Good thing too as Elizabeth woke up at about 11:50 or so puking her little guts out. Poor thing. She wouldn't even really wake up, just puke and go back to sleep. So her and I dozed in the chair for about 3 hours until she was mostly done being sick. She has a bit of a fever but hasn't thrown up since 3:30 am so I hope we're all done with that mess.

This morning Zachary had a dentist appt for a couple of fillings. So, I go to his school to pick him up, he's in the gym, so I have to walk down there. no biggie...still have some time...then remember I didn't give him his meds. So, we go back home, get his meds and give them to him. It is now 10:28 and we're supposed to be at the dentist at 10:30. Not going to make it. But oh, well, we head out anyway. On the way there, we are stopped by the police. Ugh! Are you kidding me? And I hate it when they ask "where are you going in such a hurry?" Does it matter?!? Are you not going to give me a ticket if I answer correctly?? (FYI: I must have answered correctly because, miraculously, no ticket today! Bright Spot #1)

Get to the dentist and the woman was like "um, you are 1/2 hour late. I don't think the dr. will see you." Okay, I'm kinda pissed now. I just got stopped by the cops which made me even later, but not only that but the last time that Chuck was there, they left him waiting in the waiting room until they were freaking CLOSED and then were like "oh! Sorry, we totally forgot about you. You'll have to reschedule." So, if it's your fault, they reschedule you, if it their fault they reschedule you. I'm so changing dental insurances when it comes time. They seriously suck. So, now we don't have an appt until May 20.

On the way home, 2 people cut me off and an old lady in a grandma mobile slams on her brakes right in front of me. I scream some obscenities (yes, not my most shining moment in front of the children, I'm sure) which she doesn't hear and probably couldn't if I was right next to her anyway.

Also, I saw no less than 3 houses through my drive this morning with fake flowers ALL OVER the outside of their house. WTF is up with that? Seriously? It looks nasty and they are FAKE! Outside! This one house had them intertwined through the posts of their front porch, attached to the house itself and planted everywhere in planters. Eww.

Zachary, Elizabeth and I stopped at a flea market too on the way home since we had so much time considering we didn't see the dr. Zachary found a tape player/recorder he wanted but when she opened it up to show us it played the inside was all rusted out and one of the springs fell off the battery compartment. She was then like "well, I'll sell it to you for $1". No. Thanks. It won't work with the battery compartment like that!! I did however buy a nice, more compact stroller with shade for $10 so that's my deal for the day. I can now sell my big one. (Bright spot #2)

The Schwans man just came (Bright spot #3). I love the Schwans man. I held off from buying the 1/2 gallon of ice cream but I did buy some LiveSmart whole wheat crust BBQ chicken pizzas. They sounded good. Maybe I'll have one for lunch. I'm off to do just that.


Internet Porn

So, a friend went to see Avenue Q.

Apparently a song reminder her of me. I'm really clueless as to why.



Eating Problems and Children

Chuck and I are trying to start eating better.

The short term goal is to lose some weight, but ultimately the reason for this is to be healthy. Healthy enough that we are able to see our kids give us grandkids and watch those grandkids play and grow up. Possibly have kids of their own.

In doing that, we are counting calories and other macro-nutrients to try to be inline with what is recommended.

And I want the same for my kids. To be healthy. To live healthy.

Tricky thing, that is, because I do NOT want to be the diet nazi. I don’t want my kids afraid to eat things in front of me and take to hiding to eat. I don’t want my kids to gorge themselves on snacks when they are allowed them because they never get them. I don’t want my children growing up with the notion to eat past the point of fullness because we made them clean their plate. I don’t want them to have self-image issues because mom and dad were obsessed with how we looked and constantly discussing “dieting” or “calories”. I don’t want them tying rewards to food or emotions to food.

Why do I know about all those things. Because that’s EXACTLY how I was raised. Those are the issues I have with eating.

And yet, we run into issues. So how do we handle those issues?

Part of the problem is we’ve been lenient with “treats” in the last year. Daddy would go to the store daily for his afternoon Mt. Dew and bring something home for the kids. Usually a Little Debbie or sometimes a candy bar. So, now the kids expect that and throw a gigantic fit if they don’t get it every day. They ask “if we be good, can we”? That goes against everything I believe in. You don’t get food for being good. You get food to live.

Part of the issue is that Zachary is “starving” every night for dinner and bugs constantly, yet doesn’t eat when food is put in front of him and that’s wasteful. I want him to understand that he needs to eat what he asks for. But how to do that without making him clean his plate and eating when he’s not truly hungry? And how do we handle the bedtime “I’m starving” pleas? My suggestion tonight was to allow him to start dishing his own food from the options that are for dinner. Then he needs to eat that food before he gets more. And if not, he can put his plate in the fridge and eat it later. Afterall, some people can’t eat a lot at one time. So, how do we know when he’s hungry at bedtime or when he’s manipulating us? How many times do we tell him to eat his leftovers before it borders on insanity?

I wish that kids came with child-specific instruction manuals.


I feel.....more.

I waited for 12 years to do this.

I waited for 12 years to know exactly what was right for me. What was perfect and represented me.

Afterall, I didn't want Tweety Bird tattooed on my ass forever. That's not who I am.

But, this. This is perfect for me. It's beautiful and elegant and explains a huge part of who I am.

And I love it.

I got it done on Saturday for my 31st birthday (at the end of the month). It took about 45-50 minutes to do it and it wasn't bad painways except over the spine. That caused a bit of discomfort but I still lived through it.

It's a Celtic Motherhood knot and in traditional celtic knotwork the children are represented by dots inside the knot. I changed that a bit to be hearts...one heart in emerald green for each of my May babies.

I didn't get the piercing...yet. I asked about it but we were on a tight time table so I didn't. Soon though. Especially after the tattoo and the pain/discomfort associated with it. I told Chuck that I like the pain. I like the reminder that it's there. He laughed and said these are the times he's glad he married me. I guess being a pain junky has its advantages.

I've heard that tattoos are addicting and I can see it. The adrenaline rush was amazing. On the way home, I was already thinking what I could get for my next one. But, considering it took 12 years to decide on this...it might take me a while.



I have a good friend, T, who moved to Florida soon after our children were born last May. Her son and E were born 5 days apart; it was so much fun to be going through pregnancy with a friend and considering we had another friend who delivered a week before E, it was three times the fun. T is still active in our Michigan mom’s group, but she has moved on and made friends in a new mom’s group in Florida. (Traitor. Hehehehe) She asked all us Michiganders for thoughts and prayers today for one of her new friends who lost her 6 month old baby boy from SIDS today.

I felt like I’d been hit in the gut and I don’t even know these people.

I was in a horrible mood earlier today. I blame it on lack of sleep and spring break. But upon reading that, and sending up a prayer for that poor family, I turned my thoughts inward.

I am SO. LUCKY. I had three pretty uneventful, relatively easy pregnancies (comparatively speaking). I have three healthy children. I have a wonderful husband who loves me and the kids. Granted, we deal with some issues with Zachary, but I wouldn’t exchange that for anything if it meant not having my sensitive, sweet, loving child. Overall, I am extremely blessed.

Even Chuck, who is the eternal pessimist said he couldn’t understand how I could be in a such a bad mood; after all, today was a momentous occasion. A first of sorts. Zachary brought me breakfast in bed for the first time. Rice Krispies with Strawberries. And it was very yummy. And yet, I don’t remember if I said “thank you” to him.

And yet, there I sat in a shitty mood, because I was being a referee today and unable to put together a string of coherent thought without being interrupted by whining or hyperactive questioning. Unable to get even 5 minutes to myself.

That family now has eternity to themselves without their little boy. Kinda changes the perspective on things a bit doesn’t it?

So, hug your child today. I know when I get home, I'll be going in and checking on each of them. Giving them a kiss on their cheek and thanking my lucky stars that I get to wake up tomorrow and referree again.


More Socially Acceptable (or Unacceptable) Behavior

Let me clarify something on the whole Mohawk issue. It’s not a question of IF I’m going to let him have a Mohawk. We’re letting him get a Mohawk for the summer. I don’t have a problem with it at all.

My whole point for the previous post (that Chuck has informed me didn’t come through) is whether I should beat the living shit talk sternly to those people (i.e. my father) who decide they are going to give Zachary a rough time for having it or whether I’m going to let Zachary take the heat for his choice.

Because my father WILL give him a rough time about it.

But, see, I’m not one necessarily to shy away from touchy subjects with my father and most of my family (unless it refers to how they will sometimes make me feel like shit. I don’t typically discuss feelings with them.) I grew up with a father who was extremely overbearing, overprotective and just an all-around jackass (whom I love dearly, mind you.) At the age of 14, he would measure my hair before I left the house to make sure I didn’t get more than 2” cut off. He would make me change my clothes if my shirt bottom touched the top of my jeans and didn’t fall below my beltline as no daughter of his would go out “dressed like a whore”. I wasn’t allowed to get my ears pierced.

So, at the age of 17, I pierced my ears. I hid it for all of about 1 day. At 18, I chopped my hair off up to my chin from below my shoulders. Obviously, there was no hiding that. My mom, and more than likely my father (as we’ve never discussed it…he gets embarrassed because I’m too open as I know it’s the ONLY way to shut him up), know about my nipple rings (yes, 2. Although I no longer have one as it migrated out after about 4 years of having it. Ouch!) I’ve been very upfront with my family about getting my tattoo, which my mom doesn’t approve of, but she likes the symbolism behind it. When Chuck and I were dating, I would spend my weekends out there. My mom questioned me one time about how they want me to work/sleep in the cabins with the kids. I explained that I wouldn’t be sleeping in the cabins, but with Chuck. She asked cautiously “on his couch?”, to which I replied “No, Mom, in his bed.” That was the end of that. Then about 7 months later, I let them know that we would be moving in together. Again, not pleased, but they know me well enough to know that it doesn’t matter to me, I’m going to do what I want regardless.

Zachary takes after me in a lot of ways. His stubbornness and tendency towards defiance is 100% me. How did I end up being cursed in having all 3 children Tauruses?!

(Disclaimer: Those that know me really well know that there are things that I don’t advertise about my life. However, if asked, I would more than likely answer any question.)

On the subject of socially unacceptable behavior, we have had our first shoplifting experience with Lucas today.

We went to the Chinese buffet today for lunch (I was absolutely exhausted after moving their entire bedroom around (metal bunkbeds are freaking heavy!) so I asked Chuck if we could do lunch out. Upon paying, Lucas kept asking for a toy. I told him no and figured that was the end of that. As we were piling into the jeep, I noticed he was playing with an orange ring. I asked him where’d he’d gotten that, knowing full well that he had not had that BEFORE we went in. He told us that he’d taken it off the counter. So, Chuck trucked Lucas’s little butt back into the restaurant to return the stolen goods. After returning it and apologizing, the person behind the counter was very nice and let Lucas know it wasn’t a big deal; no worries, honey.

I find that frustrating in some ways. While I don’t necessarily think they should call the cops, it would be nice to have them read the kid the riot act. Letting them know it’s not acceptable, or nice, or something.

Funnily, Zachary was almost his exact same age when he did it and has never done it since. When I trucked Zachary’s little butt into the gas station and made him return his candy and apologize for taking it, with him sobbing the entire time, the gentleman behind the counter did tell Zachary that it wasn’t nice to steal and that some people get the cops called on them for that, but thank you for stepping up and returning it. I loved how that clerk handled it. And Zachary has never done it since.

Let’s hope this is the first and last time for Lucas too.


I love my child...mohawk or no.

When do you start teaching your child about appropriate behaviors? Maybe appropriate isn’t the word I’m looking for…socially acceptable may be more apt. Appropriate behaviors would include things like not talking about pooping, farting, pissing and burping in front of others. Socially acceptable is things such as having a “normal” hair cut or dressing like others.

Now, obviously, I’m not necessarily one to be preaching the finer points of socially acceptable behavior. What with my couple different piercings, soon to be more, and soon to be a tattoo along with some of my parenting techniques and personal decisions. However, I’m an adult and I’ve accepted the fact that I do this because I choose to do it, fully knowing that I may get ridiculed for my choices. Called names. Pointed at, perhaps. Talked about behind my back in hushed whispers. I’ve experienced these things.

But at what age do you allow that to happen and not say anything?

Zachary wants a Mohawk. Chuck and I talked about it and we said if he still wanted a Mohawk come summer, he could have one. He questioned our decision, of course, considering the fact that another little boy in his class already has a Mohawk. We explained that we don’t find it acceptable attire for a school environment (yes, we do talk to our children this way.)

We also explained that in getting something that is traditionally considered “counter-culture” and not necessarily socially acceptable, he will need to accept negative comments as part of his choice in looking different. Is it right that people talk? No. But we cannot control others opinions of ourselves.

So, in discussing this with a co-worker, I had mentioned how we had explained this to him and prepared him for the comments and probably comments from his own grandpa’s about looking like a punk. She gasped at how they could say that and how I would be chewing them a new one.

I told her I wouldn’t. And I won’t, unless it gets way out of control. Part of having something different is being different. Part of being different is that people will talk smack, whether we want them to or not. And like we told Zachary (and something I still struggle to deal with daily), we cannot control other’s thoughts or opinions of ourselves.

But is it something that you can understand at almost 6 years old? Or will it be emotionally scarring for him? Is this one of those times that my husband talks about when you need to allow the child to make a mistake or a choice, even if a bad one, to learn for himself.

It hurts my mom heart to see my child hurt. Emotionally or physically. Not sure I’m ready for this, but I guess I can’t fight his battles and take on the bad guys forever. Right?


Let's go fly a kite....Up where the sky is bright....

I feel like my life slips away from me sometimes. I tell the kids "sure, we can fly a kite...maybe tomorrow." And then tomorrow, it rains or something else happens whether it be a sick kid, a bad day with Zachary, forgetfulness from momma and we end up not doing it. It's like our life is full of "tomorrow's".

I think some of that is the curse of essentially being a single parent for the week. With Chuck and I working opposite shifts, it's just not as easy to get dinner done AND play with the kids. There is no one else there to do it, so either you get the chores done OR you play. And sometimes I just feel so overwhelmed with everything, I don't know where to start, what to do, so I do nothing.

I've been really examining my life over the last week. I've been offered something that will take up my time at home, but in the long run, may help our home situation. I am totally intrigued because it would be something for me...I'd be using my brain. Challenging myself again. Something I don't get at my work.

But, I've been concerned about the time it will take away from my family. Even if only for a year that times would be rough, I don't want to look back and think that I lost a year of time with my kids. Enjoying my kids. Playing with my kids.

So, I've decided that in order to do things, I need to schedule things. I have a Franklin Covey planner which I used to use religiously, BC (before children), but haven't since because I didn't feel I needed it. Well, I think I was wrong. I let time get away from me too often thinking "well, I have all afternoon for that" when in truth I don't. I have a billion things that need to be done and by letting things slip away, I get furthur behind and don't make that time for myself.

So, I've decided I need to start scheduling things. Not just for me, but for the kids too. So I don't forget that I promised them that I'd play Chutes and Ladders tomorrow morning or fly a kite over the weekend. But, also, so I can start to fit in my exercise, eating right, newly acquired non-profit work, work, time with Chuck, taking the kids to the park. and chores. Whew. It's going to be a very full Franklin Covey. Obviously, its going to be very fluid as there will always be unexpecteds (isn't there ALWAYS unexpecteds with kids?!) but I'm hoping it will help me become more organized and find a way to fit everything and everyone I love in. Without becoming a raging bitch.

So, in the spirit of my newly worked out ways of organization, we had a great weekend. My house is somewhat picked up (NOT in any way perfect, mind you...there is lots of clutter spots that need to be taken care of) and we enjoyed some "firsts" with the kids.

On Saturday, we traveled to visit a friend and try out the boys' rocket that they got for Christmas. We went to a park and Elizabeth got to try out her very first swing! She very much enjoyed it. I love hearing her laugh. And for the record, the rocket was extremely anti-climatic. 6 inches isn't enough to satisfy anyone.This evening, the boys wanted to try out there new kites that they got for Easter. They have gotten numerous kites before, but we've never made the time to fly them. So, we made the time tonight. Unfortunately, I was at home with Elizabeth making dinner, but they boys had a great time. Zachary was very excited to have gotten his kite up all by himself!

And just one more picture, just because. Because he supports me and gives me the opportunity to do something for myself. Because I love him with everything I have.


Imported Chocolate? Yessireebob!

I know I have mentioned at least a couple different times how much I enjoy reading Angella.

Well, let me tell you why I mention that now.

She is bribing encouraging people to leave comments for her by promising a drawing of Canadian chocolate that is shipped right to your door. And the comments are rolling in! If she gets more than 150 comments, Angella has promised 2 drawings. What a gal!

I know that some of us over at the Artichoke are working to eat healthier, but if I can win, I could hold off to eat the chocolate until the 30 days is up, right?


Things I've learned today

Matt can make anyone believe just about anything.

Thinking about your future and other deep things is absolutely futile when there are 3 children around.

When you are basically a single mom every day, there are ALWAYS 3 kids around.

Old men can turn into extremely rude assholes when they are waiting in line for gas that is 38 cents cheaper than anywhere else in town.

I do not enjoy being screamed at and called a bitch when I wasn’t being one.

I absolutely HATE being referred to as m’am.

In looking up clich├ęs, I found one I’ve never heard of but must use sometime: Like a boy scout troop in an Argentine brothel. (meaning: In the manner of a person who finds themselves in a situation ripe with wondrously depraved possibilities.)

I like situations that are filled with depraved possibilities. I don’t find myself in enough of them.

I need to stop emotionally eating, after I finish my ice cream. (Okay, so I didn’t learn that TODAY, but I reiterated it to myself today.)

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