Saturday, May 25, 2013

Mother's Day at Montauk

My Mother's Day wish... 
Updated photos of my little darlings,
with the beautiful backdrop of Montauk.

Simple right?

Yeah..... okay......

"What's with the face?  Come on... Be nice for the camera..."
"Let her go!"  (ARGH - What's with this rule
Sisters are not allow to touch brothers?!
That doesn't count today!)
"Stop! Come on.....?"
"Guys... just for a minute..."
"Let him go!  Somebody is going to fall off the cliff!"
(Screeched in my best Mommy voice.)
"Careful?!  The Cliff!?!" 
(Yes, the camera is still clicking away as I held steady, pleading.  Geez?!)
The prudent decision was made to move further 'inland.'  
They wanted to climb up into the boulder 'mountain.'
(OMG... anything to get you two to work together...)

  Note the smirky faces... They mock my threats...
tickled that they got Mommy so nervous over silly cliffs... argh.
Good Picture - but not my favorite...

I like the lighthouse in the background, but not the fence... 
wish that wasn't there...  and too much hair blowing all over.  Who could see?  It made climbing dangerous, so up it went... I would rather it down.  
Much better!  Now that's what I'm talking about.  (Still... hate the fence...)
 (Big smiles from Mommy too... ;)

Okay... I am not liking the boulder mountain any more... having too many visions of ankle injuries... 
(a line of neurotic thinking that unfortunately comes with motherhood.)

Let's move to ground level, and get the lighthouse as the backdrop... sans fences.

"Not again ... "
"Please... just stand nice together........."
"Oh. My. GOSH!?  Seriously?!  
Do you want to eat tonight?!"
"Let her go!  You're gonna hurt her... STOP!!  
That's it!  I'm NOT feeding you!!"   
(Thankfully he was HUNGRY -
major Mommy bargaining chip!)
"Be nice for just one minute so I can get this over with!  
Come on... then we can go get something good to eat."
(Yes, of course I intend to feed them...)
"Not that nice."
Okay.... you don't want to know what I said......
My smirking - hungry - children.
Without all the previous images
 and behind the scene knowledge,
one might think this a decent picture....
I see Dennis-the-Menace
trying to keep it together so he doesn't risk starving..
Getting better.....
Yeah!  Love it!  My Mother's Day wish granted!  

Oh my GOSH!!!!!  STOP!

Who's idea was it to have kids?!

Daddy's zoom lens was able to capture a few shining moments.

Awesome shot!!!!  Thanks Frank!  One of my all time favorites.

So serious...

The mate to my 'wish granted' photo... just angled different.
Love it.....


In case you haven't had enough, click the link ~ Every Day is Mother's Day

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Bath's and Veggies... Thank's Discovery Channel ...and Scabies?!

Okay... it's official.  I just entered my first writing contest.  
Oye - my nerves!
Don't know.....    Luck filled well-wishes welcomed.  ;)

Here's the post ~ {Darn... I just realized I did not submit it with a photo... argh!!}

Want to know how to get your kids to eat vegetables?  Here’s how.  Scabies!  Yes, those dreadful bugs
Wish I could add this to my entry... 
that live beneath your skin. 

Here is how I found this out ...

I picked Alex and Charlee up from Patrick and Michelle’s.  Their Mom and Dad were watching them so I could go to work.  When I got there, all the kids were watching Animal Planet Extreme.  I had to drag Alex and Charlee out during a commercial.  On the way home, I lectured them about having to get showered and ready for bed.  I was met with great resistance.  They both wanted to finish watching the rest of the show.  {Fine... it wasn’t worth the argument.}  There was only a few minutes left. They watched in the living room, while I did some dishes.  When I finished, I went to check how much longer the show was going to be on.  There they were, staring at the television screen, wide-eyed with looks of horror on their faces.  I sat down to see what was being shown. 

Scabies?!  Yes, all about scabies.  In, might I add,  a very ‘child friendly’ format.  They described, very throughly, how these ‘lovely’ creatures borrow under the surface of your skin, how they shoot some sort of disgusting fluid that dissolves your flesh so that they may drink it, and therefore live off your body, forever...  They went as far as showing people who have it, the lumps, the itching, the yuck... lets not leave out the bug itself!   Don’t you just love these educational programs?!?

When the show broke for commercial, Charlee turned to me, as if in slow motion.  I swear if she knew the words she would have said ‘What the ____!!!”  But instead, thankfully, she said “Is that true?!”  She already knew the answer, I was at a loss.  The program was so detailed.  Alex’s insistent nodding didn’t help....  “Yes, honey, it is.”  Her jaw hung open and she started to get flushed.  “Well... IIIII don’t want to get those!!”  I said “I know, I don’t either” “Hoooww dooo you get those?”  I said, {Here comes the mean mommy moment...} “It’s from being dirty, not washing your hands, and touching dirty things.  That’s why we take showers and baths everyday, so we don’t get weird things...”

With that Alex bolted to the bathroom, yelling out I’M TAKING A SHOWER!!!”  Charlee moved to the center of the living room and started screaming I WANT A BATH, I WANT TO TAKE MY BATH!!!”  She turned all sorts of shades of red and purple.  I got hysterical with laughter.  Are these the same children, who moments ago gave me such a hard time about showering? Try as I might, to tell her that she does not have these things, and will not get them, she couldn’t hear me over her own screaming.  I started up the stairs yelling to her that I was going to get her bath ready right now.  She followed, fumbling to get undressed as she made her way up the steps.  I started running the tap water.  She was not far behind, breaking sound barriers with her shrieking, a step up from the previous screaming.  The water coming out of the tap wasn’t even hot and she plunged into the tub.   She still had her socks, shirt and underwear on, only her pants had made it off.  I couldn’t stop laughing... “Charlee you still have your clothes on.  Get out of the tub!”  She started shrieking even louder, as if that was possible.  She was making so much noise in this small bathroom, that I couldn’t even think - the vibrations were shaking my brain, and eyeballs...  She did not want to get out of the tub.  She wanted water, hot or cold, dressed or not, on her NOW!   “Charlee!  Look how old Mommy is.  I never had them!  Look at Daddy he never had them.  You are not going to get them!!”  She was now listening, trying... wanting to believe me.   She stopped shrieking - my ears were thanking me.   Now she was just crying and sobbing.  I was able to get her clothes off.
“How am I not going to get them?  By taking a bath and washing my hands before I eat?”

“Yes”  I said, trying to control my laughter.  “You are very clean, you are not going to get them.”  She calmed down some more, and asked me to help her wash.  Usually she likes to wash herself.  Not this time.

Then I had a thought.  Why not turn this crazy situation to my advantage.  Don’t I deserve something in return for enduring this frantic version of a human brain rattle? 

“You know what else keeps them away?”

Her attention was mine.  She did not take her eyes off me, waiting urgently for this very important information...

“Eating your vegetables.”

Her face clearly showed signs of concern.  She isn’t much for vegetables.  This was going to be a problem. 

“Why vegetables?”  She paused to think.  “They don’t like vegetables?”

“No, vegetables make you healthy and they don’t like healthy.”

She nodded an ‘I understand’ nod.  The decision was clear. She was going to have to eat her vegetables from now on.

When Daddy got home Charlee bombarded him with information about washing hands, baths, scabies, and vegetables.  It took a while, and a Mommy update, before Daddy understood.

Contest link:

Monday, May 13, 2013

Every Day is Mother's Day

My Pride and Joy ~ My Heart and Soul ~ My no-longer babies...... This is for you!

{One day late because my old computer would not work, and rather than fight with it I choose to spend the day with you creating new memories... Sorry this is late!}

I am re-posting this... I still feel the same....  {...and yesterday was an AWESOME day!  Thank You!!}

The essence of me...  Each of you etched forever in my heart and my soul...  I could not imagine my life without you.

I would have never thought, that when you were born I, too, would be reborn.  That on that blessed birthday life would actually begin. 

That I would see everything new again through your eyes...  Life is more colorful, more vibrant, more ‘here’... because of you.

How interesting that tastes ...and smells ....and sounds would all be experienced as thou never before.  From the joy of chocolate, to the entertainment of a lemon.  That beautiful flower, and that stinky diaper... the giggling laughter of my baby, to the ‘Mom, what’s for dinner’ of today.

I can’t thank you enough for the rediscovery beneath my feet!  Somehow through you, it rose up to greet us... and me.  The grass was greener, the sand softer, rocks had more sparkles, and dirt became an artistic medium.  I never took the time to actually look at my feet ...until your little feet came along. 

You skipped, and though not moving, I floated.  You held my hand ...with amazing mini replicas of my own, only softer, warmer, fuller... and magically I was connected.

My treasures (YOU) unlocked a world of treasures.. how appropriate!  Ants were amazing... and birds were wondrous... The list kept - and keeps - growing.  The softness of a cat, the play of a puppy, the warmth of the sun, puddles in the rain, angels in the snow, piling leaves to jump in and camouflage ourselves.... the sky was somehow bluer.  Surprise, surprise... clouds were bunnies ...and dragons ...and more.

Your first words, first steps... your first roller coaster ride... I relish it all.  You have been my ultimate adventure!  I look forward, each day, to YOU.

We are one.  Your scraped knees pain my heart... and your brilliant smiling face fills all internal gaps.  You get sick, and I can’t breathe.... You succeed and I am successful...  (Whoever said you can’t be controlled by another person... must have never had kids!)  Without words we speak.  All you need is to look at me a certain way, and you’ve said all you need to say.

Your quirks... your uniqueness... your being different from the rest and from each other... is so perfect.   I couldn’t ask for anything more.

My Mothers Day Gift will always be you... Because of you - I am.

In every way...  Thank You!  Thank You!  Thank You!  Thank You!  Thank You!

Forever and Always - I Love You! ~  Mom

In case you haven't had enough, click the link ~ Mother's Day at Montauk - They granted my wish!  Again... 

Kissing Fish and Hunting Accidents... {A man has to do, what a man has to do.}

‘Uncle’ Kurt - not blood relation, but rather akin via ‘manly’ camaraderie - was one of my father’s most captivating friends.  No womenfolk needed - or for that matter wanted - to keep this relationship alive 

Standing beside my 6’1” father, Uncle Kurt was rugged and short.  A man of strength... a chiseled face,  prominent white smile, and powder blue eyes.  His thick, dark hair contrasted my fathers' fine dirty blond, light complexion.   A stereotypical German accent made me wonder if he even knew what a ‘W’ was... or should I say ‘vus.’  Vhen he spoke, one needed to be sure to pay attention, lest you miss vhat he vus saying.  Though Dad had no trouble understanding... he was use to the ‘broken’ tongue, as my Grandmother spoke with the same thick accent... no ‘W’s for her either.    

A painter by trade, his white carpenter jeans were speckled with each new days array of color selection, as was the matching white painters cap adorning his head.  His shirt - white also - yes, with speckles - had dark blue bands lining the edges of the sleeves.  This I remember, as I can still see his muscular biceps bulging and straining the materials girth each time he moved his arms.  I am sure there was a tattoo, though I can’t remember what it was... {or if there wasn’t there should have been}  A gentle haze of dark hair, covered his forearms... all the way to his capable and well used hands.    

This was Dad’s kind of guy.  A real man’s man... 

Nature was a common denominator in this friendship.  Whether hunting, fishing or family trips to Pennsylvania, they actively coordinated their calendars to get their wildlife in. 

In line, I’ve two stories I’d like to share...  Each, duly burnt into my memory.

The first story is somewhat of a fish tale.... 

Uncle Kurt loved to fish, though he didn’t always eat his catch.  In fact, the majority of his backyard was set up to nurture and cherish any prized catch.  Two ponds - not one - on opposing ends of the lengthy yard were connected by an ever-flowing ‘river.’   It was a worthy tributary for his newly adopted ‘babies.’  Rocks and boulders not only created a ‘babbling brook,’ they also enhanced the waterfall area.  Grass, and a few rouge flowers, lined the waters edge... an arched wooden bridge gave the final touch, allowing easy access to the pumps and gadgetry that kept this river oasis ‘alive.’

Going from the great outdoors to a glorified fish tank, could prove concerning... Though more concerning should be the narrowly missed butter-and-lemon-fish-roast-in-your-own-honor... I dare say this was a ‘happy’ school of fish.  This was also a happy Uncle Kurt... unless {Heaven forbid} any of his brood should happened to fall ill - which would trigger a sanctioned stay in the special 150 gallon tank set up in his basement... equipped to treat any fishy ailments.  {He was serious about his ‘babies.’}  

(A Little Side Note - to give a bit more depth and insight to the seriousness factor... Neighborhood cats needed to bewareSeriously!! They risked being ‘offed’ and stuffed in an empty paint can should they get too close.  {I was never fond of this ‘policy’ - and hoped it was an exaggerate untruth!} Whenever we went for a visit, I made a point to chase every, and any, stray cat away... with such vigor that they tell all their kitty friends and never step paw on his property again!  The fish-food-eating squirrels were fair game as well... To this day, I cringe whenever I see paint cans in the garbage!)

One sunny day - a day following a very heavy rainstorm - the ‘river’ mysteriously stopped flowing.  Dad was walking up the driveway as frustrations were being aired. “Vat is go’in on vit my pumps!?! They stopped vork’in!”  Uncle Kurt raced along the ‘river,’ checking all the electrical wires.  Dad, mechanic that he was, called out the obvious, “Did you check the motor?”  Preoccupied with trouble shooting power lines, Uncle Kurt had not yet crossed the bridge to the pumps.  Bending down, he lifted two ends of heavy cable, “Ah, here is da problem...” and with that pushed the disconnected ends back together. 

The moment of relief fleeted the second those cables were connected.  A current not suitable for water, anywhere, anytime - aka electrical current! - traveled into the ‘river’ with daunting speed, simultaneously skyrocketing every prized ‘baby’ about three feet into the air.  Uncle Kurt cried out in horror... as Dad stood dumbfounded at the waters edge.  Many fish could not withstand the jolt and met their demise right there on the grassy knoll, but some were still valiantly trying... desperately gasping in their new, and all too breezy, atmosphere.  Uncle Kurt scrambled, grabbing every ejected fish he could, throwing them back into the water... until he came across his ‘crowned’ favorite, “AHHH!?!  My fish!”  Snatching it up, a quick inspection only confirmed that things didn’t look promising... the fish was not moving.  Uncle Kurt did the only logical thing he could think of... . . .   mouth to mouth.  

Dad was now crying... with laughter, “WHAT are you doing?!?”   Too preoccupied to explain, Uncle Kurt focused on his task... {A man has to do, what a man has to do.}  Covering the fish’s mouth again, he puffed a breath of air as the gills flapped, “My fish... my favorite fish!”  {I suppose this could have been the time to point out that fish need water to actually breath... and that petting a fish might not be soothing to the fish...}  Nevertheless, Uncle Kurt petted, and breathed, and frantically - yet ever so gently - compressed, as though CPR could be successfully performed on a fish... his fish.  Dad had no words, after all... what does one man say to another in moments such as this?  

Lo and behold, the fish arched bringing this grown, manly man to his knees... which is where he stayed for the next few minutes as he held his struggling-to-survive 'baby' upright in the water.  I don’t know who it took longer to regain composure... the fish - who should have been renamed ‘Bob,’ because that is all he did from that day forward... or my father - who, from that day on, was never able to look at Uncle Kurt, his ‘river,’ or ‘Bob’ the same way...

This next story, could be deemed a hunting accident... 

I realize hunting is not for everyone.  For those unfamiliar with the ‘sport,’ allow me to outline a few behind-the-scene details.  Long before the fated moment, areas of potential need to be identified.  My father would walk the woods numerous times, in search of his perfect spot.  Deer trails were monitored for traffic levels, tuffs of fur on nearby thicket were scoped out, pellet like droppings were inspected, recent bedding areas were noted... careful detective work was collaborated while making sure to not leave your own footprint.  Watch where you tread, watch what you touch, no spitting, no peeing {yes, you know how the male species love to mark their territory...}  No human deterrents were to be left behind, ‘warning’ the forest of your pending presence.  Hunting is indeed a sneaky art. 

The actual day of the hunt involves preparation as well.  Obviously, the principle concept is to blend in... to not be noticed... to outfox the prey.  Hence, great efforts go into camouflaged gear... camouflaged face painting... camouflaged body odor - aka no nice smelling soaps, {AKA no showers} actually a dab here and there of deer lure urine! {Let’s call it what it is... and doe urine too boot, since we want to lure a strapping buck!}  Yes, hunters are that serious about covering up their human scent.  I, for one, am not serious enough {about any hobby} to warrant donning another creatures urine... that would just be... well... unnatural!  Even for my un-girly Self.  

On the morning of the hunt, one must be up and out, and positioned in the woods well before the forest wakes.  There is no chance of trespassing in natures territory, and going undetected, if you are one of those late risers.  The only chance a hunter has, is to get there in the lull of the night and hope the forest inhabitants are tired enough to ignore your presence... or sit still long enough to bore them into forgetting about you.  Then you just settle in... and wait... wait for your prey to unassumingly walk into your path.  
Most excursions turn out relatively uneventful, unless you are the deer.  More often than not they know humans are there, and take painstaking steps to avoid accordingly.  I’ve come to realize, that hunting was, and is, just man’s excuse to have a quiet morning deep in the heart of nature.  Most ‘hunts’ turn out to be a surreal stay in a wonderland of trees, one that eases the drawl of city life.  It is a very thought out, serious task.  And really?  What wife, is going to argue with a husband, who has taken to face painting, smells of strange pee, with gun in hand, and is prepared to kill?  Uh, yea... the proper response is, “Yes, dear... go... far into the woods...”  

Now that you understand all that goes into a ‘hunt,’ let me share the hunting accident story... 

Dad and Uncle Kurt had spent the morning sitting in their well-chosen-designated spots.  Sadly for them, on this day the deer had out smarted the humans.  The secret call was sounded, a cloak-and-dagger coo which cut through the woods, signaling the other that it was time to head home.  Tomorrow is another day... They could re-visit this spot again, if the human factor was kept to a minimum.  Ever so quietly, they walked back to the car.

It was at this very moment Uncle Kurt got that other kind of call from Nature... one that could not be ignored.  Back into the woods he went as Dad waited nearby... that is, until he heard all hell break out in the forest.  A loud scream, followed by cursing and all sorts of commotion... {I apologize in advance for the graphicness of what I am about to relay, but there is no way around it...}  Apparently, Uncle Kurt had squatted to do his business.  He had no choice but to partially disrobe in the midst of the forest, his fancy camouflage coveralls unzipped and piled at his feet.  An appropriate hole dug, intended to bury - and snuff out - any human evidence.  {A man has to do, what a man has to do.} 

His ‘business’ finished, cold from being so exposed, he quickly pulled up his fancy coveralls, jerking the hood up and over his head.  

{I suppose this could have been the time to point out that hood placement is crucial in situations such as this...  and that a catch-all might not be soothing to the human...}

Uncle Kurt successfully placed his human droppings ‘lure’ precisely on top of his own head. 

So much for salvaging this perfect, well-chosen-designated spot... Today the deer were fully warned... and laughing!  Actually, I can envision every animal of the forest watching, questioning humanity and their obsession with pee and poop!  

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Frank's Rent-a-Husband Service

'When someone shares something of value with you, 
and you benefit from it, 
you have a moral obligation to share it with others.'

This is a three part post, geared towards the couples of the world. Okay, let me be forthright in saying that this first part, which was actually the initial catalyst for this post, is geared towards waning couples of the world. The next two parts are outright skewed... in all sorts of directions.

I truly hope you never need my friends services, but in case you do... she is WONDERFUL  Journey Beyond DivorceIt is a venture started over a year ago, which today has blossomed into a full-time business. Keep in mind she offers Life Coaching as well - quite nicely, I might add - though her focus is on giving insight, support and tools to navigate through the hardship's of divorce.  

This brings me to the Second part of this post... My darling hubby, after learning of Karen’s venture, and being the 'helpful' guy he is, came up with the following brilliant idea... 

{Yes, he took the time to think, organize, and type this all out... Yes, this is the same guy that forgets what day the garbage goes out - every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday for the past 10 years. The guy that {once} put the dishes in the dishwasher away before the cycle was run... and the guy that {once} folded all the dirty laundry and clean into one big pile... Sorry Ladies ~ He’s Mine!}

Still, he had this very 'helpful' idea... Of course, he made sure to cover his it-only-happened-once ass all the bases. I can't say I blame him, it's bad enough having one disgruntled female to contend with. 

 Third Hand & Rent-a-Husband 

Two (2) HONEY DO LIST options, plus a fully Customizable List 

Now that you finally got rid of that #!#%*, and are finding that #!#%* had some use after all, perhaps its time for you to call Frank.

HONEY DO LIST - Option 1

Take out the garbage (including recycles....... maybe.)
Pick-up groceries (no returns)
Pre-open jars for future use
Make Lunches (4 max)
Fix The Toilet
Fill the car with gas
Pick-up second and/or third Child (See Note a)
Drop off second and/or third Child (See Note b)
Hang Pictures (with or without supervision)
Move Furniture (2 times max per piece)
Throw out #!#%*’s stuff
(limited to 35 items, and Frank retains the option to keep any item(s) of use.)

HONEY DO LISTOption 2  (Includes all of Option 1)

Make Dinner (See Note c)
Wash dishes after dinner (See Note d)
Wash Laundry (See Note d)
Dry Laundry (See Note e)
Vacuum (2 rooms max.  If the vacuum cleaner is able to suck up the object, it is not considered ‘too big’ to be vacuumed.)

CUSTOMIZED LIST - Available Options

1)  Cover you when mother or girlfriend's ask, “Are you seeing someone yet?” (See Note f)
2)  Make emergency runs to pharmacy for unmentionables.
3)  Sit on couch blankly staring at TV while you vent. (See Note g)
4)  Listen to venting with an occasional grunt. (See Note h)
5)  Telling you, you are right (See Note i)
6)  Taking the blame for when things are lost.

  • (Notes a & b)  One drop off, or pick up, per child, with a maximum of 15 minutes or 5 miles between locations. Does not include mileage, unless car is provided. Filling up the gas tank during drop offs and pickup's are considered separately.
  • (Note c)  Does not include cost of, or shopping for groceries.  All participants in Dinner must eat what is made.  Service is only provided between the hours of 5 and 6 p.m.
  • (Note d)  Does not include collecting, sorting or drying.
  • (Note e)  Does not include putting away of laundry.  Clothes are considered folded if they fit in drawers.  
  • (Note g)  Projectile objects: sharp pointed objects, heavily weighted objects, and/or any excessively hot or cold liquids, are not permitted.
  • (Note h)  PLEASE REFER TO Note g!  At no time is physical pain permitted.  This includes situations where the occasional well meaning grunts, or comments, are conversationally inappropriate or thoughtlessly placed.
  • (Note i)  All attempts will be made to be convincing.  Please refer to Note g and Note h.

Now for the Third and last part of the post... The prompt that reminded me of Frank’s Rent-a-Husband Service, and spurred me to share

Today on Facebook was the following post.  After I got finished laughing... I decided it was the perfect adjunct to round out this ‘story’ - Too funny to keep to myself!  

I am having Frank print out a stack! ;) 
{Just in case....}
He can bring them with him, should you procure his services. 

FYI...  In case anyone is wondering.  Frank - the man that food shops at the drop of a hat, even at 2 am, for anything - the man that usually places his grunts in the right place - the man that manages to get the garbage to the curb... at some point... has a fantastic sense of humor {once again} gave this his full rubber-stamp of approval.   XO