missed boats

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

do you ever, at the end of a really long day, realize that you missed the boat?

because that totally just happened to me.

i'm not the type to put all of my eggs in the horoscope basket, but i do check my horoscope from time to time...just in case.

tonight was one of those nights where it occurred to me to check my horoscope, and obviously, i missed the boat.

here's what my horoscope for today said:

'today is your day, scorpio. you don't have to be dressed in fancy tights and a cape to make an important difference in someone's life. step up to the plate even if it isn't your turn at bat.'

reading that in the morning would probably make you extra aware of opportunities where you could help someone out a little bit.

reading it after a day which was completely normal and uneventful (i wrote a paper, made a powerpoint, and got new highlights)...different story.

regardless of the boats i missed today, the situation reminded me of one of my most favorite pieces of art...

curly girl designs
which reminded me that any day can be a hero kind of day, and i don't need to feel bad about missing today's boat as long as i have a tiara in my possession (which i don't) and the opportunity to help people when they need it most...

it also reminded me that i have several fun gifts to purchase, and curly girl never disappoints. :)


danny boy...

Saturday, July 28, 2012

no, not the one who gets knocked down and gets up again...and not the old irish war song...

i'm talking about danny boyle!

we were semi-glued to our tv last night. when i say semi-glued, i mean that there was no talking allowed except during commercial breaks. what an amazing spectacle!!

i loved all the literary references - j.k. rowling (with harry and voldemort), mary poppins, peter pan, captain hook, and cruella de vil. i was knee-deep in book-nerd heaven.

photo courtesy of ny-times
i got a little teary-eyed when paul mccartney found himself slightly overwhelmed by the enormity of the night because...come on, he's seen it all. i loved mr. bean and the queen.

and becks on a boat? in a suit, steering confidently down the thames? yup, that works, too.

i really loved the bold display of england's national health service (will we ever be able to pull that off?).

but my favorite part of all was, naturally, the finale. i hoped the final lighting would be a treat since i made the girls stay up to watch, and when all the petals of the flower came together to form the giant flame, the awe on their faces told me it had been worth it.

photo courtesy of ny-times
bravo and cheerio, danny boyle...i feel confident you'll be receiving your much-deserved knighthood in the near future!

i had a whole post written in my head last night after watching the opening ceremonies and then watching the news...my mind was bouncing with thoughts about gun control and nationalized healthcare (and i can't quite pinpoint it, but i feel like the solution that bridges the gap between these two should focus heavily on easy access to mental health treatment for those who require it).

when i woke up this morning, one of the first things i saw on facebook was this quote:

promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate.

good advice. i'm not sure who gets credit for those words (i think tupac used them?), but they really resonated with me and made me rethink how i wanted to approach today's post.

instead of hopping on my soapbox, i thought i'd offer you an essay to read at your leisure...by david sedaris (love him).

last night after they heard, 'let the games begin,' the girls completely cracked me up. one of them said, 'oh my gosh - they totally stole that from the hunger games...'


but now they've coined their own olympic catch phrase in a nearly-perfect British accent: 'let the games begin...and may the odds be ever in your favor.'

i think it's pretty great.

happy weekend, and peace...

tick - tick - tick

Thursday, July 26, 2012

i have been looking forward to today for a whole week (i know that sounds bizarre). we had a wonderful time at the lake last weekend, the girls had a great time with their grandparents, and i had a wonderful two days of training on monday and tuesday. honestly - i did!!

but monday and tuesday nights were much quieter than our usual 'house music' (which is always filled with chattering and giggling...and the occasional ear-splitting screech) and i really didn't like it too much.

yesterday, i went to waco and back to fetch my little ones (and i was reminded why being a road-warrior doesn't appeal to me even in the slightest), and we weaved our way through traffic just in time for a dentist appointment for thing two, which put us home at 4.


and that's why i've been waiting for a week for us to settle back into our summer routine. and that's exactly what we did today...

first we had a little lunch date...jay wanted a picnic under a tree, and cee wanted a restaurant, so i knew just the place to fit the bill for both of them...

just like me, i could tell by these faces that they were both ready for some down time and a large scoop of nothingness (when coloring becomes a strenuous chore, it's time for some r&r)...

traveling is tiring work, so we decided on some last minute low key activities, called it a day, and headed home.

my neighbors (the ones who don't spy but know everything that goes on in our 'hood) have a finely manicured, pristinely groomed yard. they inspect it each morning, carefully prune weeds, and gingerly pick off leaves and buds who have served their purpose. and it shows.

my yard is the polar opposite of that. it's a full-fledged wild rumpus. it's fend for yourself, weeds (some of them) are friends, and the mower dude comes every two weeks.

hopefully i'll be better at yard work soon - there's a convenience store being built near my house. what does that have to do with your yard, you ask? it's simple. it means that soon there will be gas near my house. which in turn means that i could, in theory, get gas for a lawn mower without having it slosh about in my car for too long. fuzzy logic? most likely, but it's the truth.

back to my yard...my trees have lots of new growth this summer, which is great if you consider the drought and you like the weeping-willow look, but not so great if you factor in that i'm not tall enough to reach the tops of them. they're shaggy (which, i think, is the tree-equivalent to the heroin-inspired eyeliner look that was in a few years ago).

they're endearing (in their own special way), but if they were children, you might call them neglected. i call them free-spirited, but they might need a low dose of adderall.

so today i took pity on my neighbors (and maybe myself a little bit) and made a last-ditch effort at some end-of-summer garden love. i figured we'd give it one last college-try before we head back to school. a little color. a little nurturing. a little pruning.

and then i realized that maybe my last ditch gardening effort was a vague metaphor for what's left of our summer.

our summer will be over in three weeks, and then i'll have a 2nd grader and a 4th grader on my hands. i'll have a new batch of eleven and twelve-year-olds to teach, and before i know it, it will be sweater season and football season (two of my favorites!).

so to say i'm embracing the last few free moments of summer is an understatement.

we still have a couple of little trips planned, and i'm looking forward to them.

but in the short term, i'm looking forward to a few more days at home with the girls, i'm looking forward to the start of the olympics tomorrow, and i'm looking forward to lots more of the giggles and silliness that seem to have dominated the best parts of this summer for us.

and now i'm off to help those cutie pies build a tent under which to rest their lovely (and weary) heads.


finale (finally)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

what a seriously perfect weekend! to say the girls and i had a ball would be a tremendous understatement. it makes my heart happy to be around people who mean so much to me and to watch as the girls continue to grow up with their wisdom and gentle guidance.

i could honestly sit in their living room and look outside at this little scene all day long...the view is one of my favorites.

but why would we do that when this was just down the street?

or when we could do this...

or this...

or this?

(hypothetically, of course)

the girls had a blast. i had a blast. it was fun/beyond necessary to catch up with my sweet friend (the one who got married in april) and her incredible parents. they are a couple of my parenting role models because of the amazing job they've done with their own children, and i feel like i learn through osmosis each time i'm around them.


i dropped the girls off for a few days with their grandparents on my way home, and i'm settling in for the season finale of the bachelorette. for two hours! followed by another hour of after-the-final-rose!! live!!!


i really hope she picks jef (i've been hoping that since london - in the pub, before the eye). :)


alright - i have just under 90 minutes to churn out a quick paper, get my sneezing under a reasonable amount of control, get ready for an evening of abc, and mentally prepare for everything else this week has to offer.

more soon....peace.


road trip

Friday, July 20, 2012

who doesn't love a good road trip? the girls and i are headed to the land of dear friends and sleep machines.

why sleep machines? i have not slept more than four hours a night for the last week and it is beyond annoying. i go to sleep, and then i wake up at 2:30...and that's pretty much the end of the story.

i seriously can't fall back asleep.

i have tried all kinds of things like melatonin...lavender...benadryl...even ambien. my last ditch effort was writing down the multitude of things that are floating through my mind like a news ticker when i wake up...not helpful. it is very frustrating to say the least!

yesterday i got an awesome prescription to help me sleep, but it was new. and super low dose. and right after i took it, i fell asleep. it was beautiful. until 2:30 am.


the awesome people we're visiting this weekend are sleep machine devotees so i'm hoping to try that with my little low dose friend and maybe i won't be a zombie anymore. maybe.

needless to say, when i woke up this morning, i was overwhelmed by the news from colorado. it's devastating and beyond tragic, and my heart is with everyone who is suffering from the senseless violence.

we have our mix-tape ready (in the form of a play list, which is what i guess it is called now), the car is packed, and we are looking forward to r&r and lots of laughs with a fabulous family!!!

see ya on the flip side. :)


life's benchmarks

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

yahoo got a new ceo today. i wasn't surprised to hear this news, but i was surprised when it was followed by the teaser, 'how will stockholders take the news that she also announced her first pregnancy today?'

i'm not sure if this caught my attention because it's 2012, because the ceo was female, or because it seemed questionable that the ceo of a major corporation could plausibly also have a baby in the near future. either way, i was intrigued and i needed to know more.

marissa mayer: best known for being the first female engineer at google, for her love of fashion, for her intelligence (artificial and otherwise), and, among other things, for her interview with lady gaga.

i have to tell you that i did watch the entire hour (and five minutes) of their interview today because it was so interesting...from a technological and sociological perspective.

courtesy of youtube

please don't worry - i'm not going to be a new gaga devotee, but she did have some fascinating insights to share during this interview. she also gave credit for her creativity to her left-handedness...at which point i thought, 'oh my gosh - it's a good thing i'm not left handed...somebody had balance in mind when they designated my hand-dexterity structure.'

i have always worked with the concept of 'time stamps' in my life...i realize it's silly, but even in college i remember thinking...'if i pass the red honda before i hit the railroad tracks on 4th street, i will be able to catch the earlier raider bus to campus from the stadium parking lot and i'll have time for a coffee before class.' if i passed the red honda after the tracks, all bets were off on coffee.

for the last two years, it's been a neon green monster truck on super-tall wheels (with a jaws mouth 'tattooed' on the windshield)...i know if i pass that bad boy on a certain road before a certain landmark, i will get to school on time. i realize that this is a false sense of security because my theory is only as good as the other person's watch...and schedule...and agenda.

but i also benchmark myself against people my own age. marissa mayer is six months younger than me. in my mind, this means one of three things:
1) she has covered way too much ground in our lifetimes;
2) i have massive amounts of catching up to do; or
3) truce: happy median {we're both messing up the continuum in our own special way...}.

and that's the kind of thing that keeps me motivated and wanting to do more in my life and more for our world. go figure. i was born this way. :)

and that's my weird confession of the day...(sigh)

congrats to mrs. mayers!


little arms, big head, bad planning

Sunday, July 15, 2012

it has been awesomely rainy here for the last week. while it's put a damper on our pool time, we've definitely found ways to keep ourselves entertained.

my dad came to visit this weekend, and it was beyond wonderful to see him!! he's such an amazing guy, and we all had a great time having him here.

jay made a purchase this morning that may have been the single best purchase of her entire life: she bought a t-rex excavation set. what i thought was going to be a cheesy little game ended up being hours (literally - hours) of fun for us all on a dreary day.

the girls spent the first hour working together. without arguing. to me, there isn't a price you can put on a purchase that creates that kind of harmony and team work.

two hours later, jay had unearthed several parts, uncovered most of a foot, and had the stellar imprint of a recently-removed spine to show for her hard work.

 at the three hour mark, cee had resigned herself to papa sam's ipad, and papa sam was lured into the offerings of espn...or disney...but probably espn. maybe.

did i tell you how much we loved having him here? 

a lot!!

and finally, just before it was time for him to hit the road, we had all twelve bones out of the clay mess. at least it was pink-ish clay?

shortly after we said our goodbyes, it was time to clean and assemble. i have to say, i was quite impressed with how quickly jay had mr. t (rex) assembled. by the four hour mark, we were done, and i only had a tiny window of opportunity to catch a shot of her with the finished masterpiece.

why was that window so tiny, you ask? oh - it's simple. that's because during the excavation, the girls planned (script, set, casting, production, etc.) a youtube video. all i can tell you is that mr. t (rex) plays the role of charlie, and some body's finger gets bit (poor barbie). it's good stuff...we even have business cards for their production company (aka chuck). that's all i can tell you for now...trailer soon. 

hope you had a spectacular weekend!!


(rahr) (<--that's my t-rex imitation)

i caved.

Friday, July 13, 2012

i ended up finishing a series i started back in may. i really didn't think i would want to.

i'm really glad i did.

please don't judge me, okay?

i promise i'll read something with an ounce of literary merit in august.

(wait - is there a 4th book in the series? and don't even get me started on who i think should be cast in the roles of christian and anastasia, okay?)

regardless, i'm 7/12 done with one of my goals.

so there. :)

common confusions

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

we have had some common confusions in our world lately. i find these to be a necessary ingredient in the spice of life.

common confusion 1: we are big fans of cooking shows in this house. huge. yesterday we were watching chopped or iron chef (i can't remember which) and the ingredient 'octopus' was on one of the menus. there was an up-close camera shot of the appendages, and cee crawls into my lap, takes my face in her hands, and says to me in a very somber voice, 'oh my god. i've heard about this, but i didn't think it was actually true.' i asked for elaboration, and she said, 'i heard that some people cook testicles...i just thought it was a joke! that's so, so wrong.' sadly, this isn't the first time we've confused our 't-' words...

common confusion 2: daytime t.v. offers a host of perils for curious kids that can really catch a parent off-guard. today we were flipping through channels and suddenly i realized we were watching 'a baby story' which is all good and well because birth is a beautiful thing (most of the time). thankfully, our viewing time started immediately post-birth. jay says, 'oh my gosh. that baby's extension cord is green. is it supposed to be green? i don't think it's supposed to be green. that is so wrong.' and then the camera had the audacity to show the up-close-and-personal shot, and cee had a well-timed comment about the baby boy's tentacles. it would have made me proud...if it was an octopus.

clearly we need some re-teaching.

common confusion 3: crazy people...i have always ascertained that there are different brands of crazy people. some you can mess with, while others shouldn't be touched with a ten-foot pole. we met the avoid-at-all-cost type last week. we'd just gotten back in our car at academy. a cab was parked next to us. i was getting the girls' things out of the shopping bag to hand to them (so it would be 'fair' on the way home) when we heard a thud against our car.

some {crazy} man had literally walked smack into my car. i promise you my keys weren't even in the ignition, and this guy went into a full-feldged conniption fit and started *yelling* at me (we could hear him very clearly even though the windows were up). he was a huge fan of the 'f' word and was hollering at me about the audicity i had to run over him (with my un-started car).

if he had a mute button, you could have heard a pin drop in my car - the girls were wide-eyed and completely shocked.

it was an impressive emotional outburst, but also kind of scary (because of my ten-foot pole theory). i felt bad for the cab driver who probably had to endure the rest of his rant, i felt bad that the girls had to see his tantrum, and i actually felt a little bad for him.

as we pulled out of the parking lot, jay said in a whisper, 'mom, that guy just gave you the number one with his middle finger. and i think we should call the police. like right now. but it's okay...don't let your feelings be hurt because i'm pretty sure he has issues.'

issues indeed.

common confusion 4: my girls are under the impression that i am a good (and talented) chef. i am neither. i can cook a mean stack of pancakes...but this morning they wanted me to make them pancakes in the shape of hearts. and their initials. as i struggled to make the 'c' and the 'j' (and don't even get me started on the hearts), i found myself wondering why i didn't name them olivia and opal.

this would benefit me and my pancake efforts, but it would also benefit you because instead of 'cee', you would know her as 'oh', and instead of 'jay', you would know her as 'double oh' (and she's seven). that would be weird. and awesome.

common confusion 5: i feel like i have a magnet effect with birds - apparently they like me (and my chimney. and my porch. and my bird feeders.), and i kind of like them. in a good/appreciates-nature kind of way (unlike my super sweet friend who is certain that my porch birds have jihadist kamikaze vendettas to settle with her). just before i started this post, a bird (a dove, i believe), was trying to get into my house via my sliding glass door (which was closed). see?

i couldn't find my regular camera (read: it was not in my immediate reach), so i used my iphone. i realize the quality is sub-par, and i'm not trying to be all look-at-my-lochness-monster-picture-slash-image-of-the-virgin-mary-in-my-grilled-cheese-sandwich on you...

...but this is a bird, and it wanted in my house. so technically, i have a baby beyonce, and the dove is simply saying 'knock knock...'

i have no idea what the moral of my story is, but think of this as a cautionary tale: know your vocabulary, know your brands of crazy, think carefully before you name your kids, and know when to say 'no' to birds.

that's my advice for today, and that's all for now.


the one and only d.s.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

the girls have their ds's...

and i have mine: d.s.

as in david sedaris. thanks to my new twitter phase, i'm getting caught up on some of the things i love without devoting entire days to certain periodicals (ahem...the new yorker).

if you're up for a great read and you have a few minutes to spare, i hope you'll spend some time perusing this essay of his. i hope you enjoy it...peace.


Thursday, July 5, 2012

the girls and i opted to stay local for yesterday's festivities...they officially dubbed it a 'staycation,' and i was happy to finally go on one. :)

last year there were no fireworks because of the crazy drought, and this year's showcase was such a welcome relief - we had a great perch and a perfect view!

it was cool to watch all the boats gather as the sun set.

the girls and their friends were so excited and happy when the show finally started. their oooo's and aahhhh's were as spectacular as the view! the firecrackers were working overtime with their glimmer in the sky and the reflection off the water and the buildings...

i hope they have the same level of amazing july 4th childhood memories as i do. even though i never celebrated at home, my oklahoma cousins knew how to do things right. we had homemade ice cream and every firecracker, black cat, spinner, whistler, parachute, tarantula, popper, bottle rocket, and roman candle known to man...and we even managed to accidentally catch a few things on fire in the process.

such sweet memories of laughter, family, and arson.... :) 

i know you have equally sweet memories because it's such a quintessential, rockwellian holiday. whether you were on vacation, staycation, or you watched from the comforts of your own home, i hope you all had an incredible independence day (and i hope you didn't catch anything on fire)!!

peace ...

t-bird love

Monday, July 2, 2012

no, i'm not talking about this kind of t-bird...

with love, from wiki

i'm talking about the cute twitter bird!!

i finally plugged myself into the 21st century, and i have a twitter account!

i 'follow' mostly the newsy-type of people like jeffrey toobin and anderson cooper (obviously), and nora ephron (who, i fear, won't be tweeting much anymore). and my friend who convinced me to get a twitter - "because you know all the breaking news before it even breaks!!" what's not to love? she knows me pretty well. :)

i sent my first tweet tonight, and i instantly felt inept in my ability to properly navigate my own tweet. here's my analogy for you:

sending a fax : calling to make sure your fax got there :: sending a tweet : texting to make sure your tweet got 'there' (where ever there is...)

really i just like getting my news info at break-neck speed. plus i think this little guy is pretty adorable...

t-bird credit
don't judge me - he's a cute bird, and you know it. and i probably won't be sending out anymore tweets due to my aforementioned lack of tweet skills, but i will have all the latest news.

before you. :)


the girls and i usually do roses and thorns at dinner each night, but for some reason, we didn't tonight (oh yeah - because the bachelorette valuable educational programming was on). so i thought you should know that one of my roses today was the plethora of blogs that were recently updated - i love it (and thank you)!



Sunday, July 1, 2012

this weekend has been a perfect, dreamy interlude to a month where i feel like we've been constantly on the go. i always feel like a circus clown during the summer trying to keep the girls entertained and not bored. a facebook friend posted this...it's pretty perfect, and it reminds me why i would not be a good elementary school teacher!

yesterday, we took a break from this summer's rhythm and marched to the beat of our own drum. i think sometimes they forget how nice it is to breathe and enjoy time at home (or maybe that's just what i want them to believe). regardless, it was a nice way to end the first half of this year.


i'm not even sure how, but i stumbled on a new blog (i think it's a blog - it has an rss feed...does that make it a blog? probably not. but i still think it's a blog.) with ideas for kids. modern parents messy kids is definitely something you should check out if you have young kids.

from there, i managed to stumble onto another great thing: tagxedo. ever heard of it? it's like wordle (kind of)...and i love it! check it out when you have a chance (and some free time) - you can make fun things like this:

alright - that's all for now. there's a lot more of today to enjoy with my little ones.


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