Dude, Where’s My Porch?!

I need a bigger porch. Attached to a house measuring over 2,800sqft, my porch is the size of a postage stamp in comparison. Not that I’m trying to complain; I’m grateful for my postage stamp and the enormous quantity of happiness that has occurred under the roof attached to it, but it does make it hard to sit outside and write when my nephews keep hitting me with the screen door every 2.7 seconds. I thought about bringing coffee out with me and enjoying the temperate weather, listening to the birds sing, soaking up the sunshine while I peacefully mind-dumped, but then I realized the only thing I’d be dumping is hot coffee all over my MacBook when the 3 year old plows the door into my shoulder for the 57th time.

What comes next is just a tiny glimpse of my real life juxtaposed with my fantasy life.

All parents have a fantasy life I think. All people, really, but since the only people I know anything about happen to be parents, we’ll just narrow it down to all eleventy billion of us. maxresdefaultIn my fantasy life, I get paid to travel to beautiful places. When I’m not working my “real job” I earn “extra” cash for effortlessly churning out brilliant blog-posts while a soundtrack of ocean waves crashes in the foreground and my toes are resting in the soft white sand (which doesn’t fly all over me & my computer when the wind blows). In this fantasy, I also have a perfect, sun-kissed body, look good in wide-brimmed hats & enjoy a never-ending supply of books, as well as free beverages ranging from water to coffee, to sweet iced tea, to bourbon depending on my mood. sourceAdmittedly, the need for bourbon may alter in direct proportion to the number of children trotting in and out of this fantasy. At this point that number is nil. The space in front of me is vast and insanely gorgeous, and there are no screen doors within 1000 miles of where I sit. While I’m at it, I’ve taken all the fat and calories out of food & chocolate is now the most densely nutritious thing on the planet.

In my real life…


Again, I’m not trying to complain. My real life is more wonderful & full of blessings than I ever could have imagined, but the closest I’ll ever come to getting paid to write is being awarded a $1,000 grant for school based on a two page essay about my personal goals. And I’ll be doing that writing (in hours rather than minutes) with a caffeine headache on a partly cloudy day from a small porch in a small town while listening to a combination of train whistles & the screeching sounds of my 4 year old nephew doing what he calls laughing while repeatedly smashing a poor pink monster truck on the concrete as hard as he possibly can, and being jostled by the repeated opening of the screen door as the 3 year old comes out to play with my ears. The cute little weirdo has a thing about ears.

Still…while I wouldn’t ever say no to a deserted island with clear, turquoise water, palm trees and a bottomless sea of books, my current circumstance is – in its own much less serene way – a sort of paradise. I am fortunate enough to have the privilege of being a full time parent to my three children and a temporary surrogate to my nephews. It’s a hard job with long hours, few breaks & infinite shoulder bruises, but as challenging and frustrating as it can be it is equally fulfilling. To see the fruits of my labor progressively manifest in these little people is pretty awesome. I won’t be able to do this forever though. I’m usually not a plan-for-the-future sort of person, preferring to usually just go with the flow, but my husband has rubbed off on me in that way recently and if things go the way they should, our home will be empty of ear-pulling, truck-smashing toddlers & fridge-emptying, soul-sucking, ride-needing, wallet-draining teens and pre-teens in as few as 8 years. I’m going to need something fulfilling to do other than stay home & watch Supernatural reruns & flip through baby books. Something that will help me to afford all this fantasy traveling I want to do.

That is the reason I’m sitting on my 8×4-foot porch procrastinating writing potential grant-awarding essays to help afford a future education in a field that pays in a more practical currency than ear-tugs and kisses. Unlike my husband, (who worked very hard & deserves every single benefit he sacrificed for) I don’t have a service-connected education allowance to pay for things like that, so essay-writing it is. My ultimate goal is to get myself trained in something that might get me a little closer to my fantasy life and still benefit my family in the meantime.

Why am I telling you this?

I hadn’t intended on producing (or publishing) this particular piece; it was meant to be a warm-up exercise destined to live out the rest of its days as #64 in my drafts folder. Yet, here we are. CgY5Qi8WEAAkU39I decided half-way through to publish it because there’s a parent somewhere who has a fantasy life they’re not expecting to even partly achieve & I want to encourage you to take steps now to make some version of it happen. Our circumstances could change at any moment & while I don’t want to take for granted the blessing I’m currently living, I do want to set myself up for a future that contains a little bit more than Empty Nest Syndrome & some kind of life crisis. Who knows? Maybe I’ll need this post in a year for my own encouragement or as a reminder for why continuing my education seemed like a good idea at 32 years old. The only way I’ll get to spend my 40s on a beach is if I take steps in that general direction now (I imagine it takes a while – & a sprinkle of Jesus juice – to walk to Hawaii). In the meantime, I’m going to sweet talk my husband into building me a bigger porch.


What are you thankful for right now? Tell me about your fantasy life! How close or far away are you? Is there any small thing you could change right now that might help put you on a new, potentially more positive path? Is chocolate also nutritious in your fantasy? (I’m asking because I wonder if we might make it happen if we put enough heads together. We should work on that fat and calorie-free thing while we’re at it).

And by this I mean that I really need to get to that grant essay & having finished this post, I now have no excuse not to be working on it. Pray for me. Lol

If You Want To Change The World…

Dear Kids,

You are growing up in a crazy world. Sometimes it’s crazy beautiful and sometimes it’s just plain crazy. The difference is really all in your perspective. You will grow up hearing words  & phrases like “feminism,” “women’s rights,” “human rights,” “climate change,” “back the blue,” “black lives matter,” “all lives matter,” & proclamations of “let’s make America great again!” These things will mean something different to each person who says them. I won’t dive into all of that today, but there are a few things I want you to know about a few of these words which will permeate this part of your life & profoundly affect the way you experience & perceive the world around you.

ct-womens-march-national-pg-20170121Recently, there have been a series of marches and protests happening around the country, all for one cause or another, some peaceful and some not. You may have heard about it. Your kids – should you choose to have them –  may learn about it in school one day; this is your history in the making. For the rest of this post I’m just going to assume you’ll one day have a family of your own. If you decide not to, that’s okay, but to drive home my point, I’m totally going to use my future grandchildren. 😉 (If the word “children” doesn’t apply to you, maybe substitute nieces and nephews? I know how literal you 3 can be. *sigh*)

One day you will be faced with the responsibility that every generation before you has faced; the responsibility to enact positive change for the next generation. It might sound irrelevant to you when you consider how fortunate you already are and how much you already have. It might sound like a pretty big deal. It may sound almost unachievable for one person. So, how do you do it?

Do you make signs and march? Protest? Riot, rally in anger, preach in righteousness, fight…? Maybe you’ll feel like your voice is best heard in a group because how can just one person – or even two people – make a positive impact on any part of the world?

images-3I just want you to know you can & I’m going to tell you how. I don’t personally believe that real, effective change is brought about in crowds yelling, inciting anger, violence, fear, & hate. Or yet in silent, peaceful crowds carrying signs about love. It makes a statement, sure…but what kind of statement? Some people are just really good at making speeches or signs and can make you buy what they’re selling regardless of your own convictions. If you don’t do anything else I ever tell you, at least do this: know that you are only responsible for yourself. Learn what you can from history & verify it for yourself rather than taking other people at their word just because they can make it sound good. Evaluate the words and actions of others for yourself. Study. Watch. Listen. Get your own facts, your own references. Just as you take responsibility for yourself, let the ones around you take responsibility for themselves. Do not ever let another person dictate your beliefs for you. Make choices you can be proud of.

You can’t make anyone do anything. You cannot make 100% of the people happy 100% of the time so you need to be able to live with the choices you make. You probably won’t cause huge cooperations or groups of people to change their beliefs, or their approach no matter how many people you rally, especially if their main concern is the money they’re making. This is because real change is a personal responsibility rather than a global one. It starts small & ripples out slowly over time, affecting one person at a time beginning with yourself.

Change starts with you. It has a ripple effect in regard to what you teach your children; if you want to change the world, start with your world.


Feminism is simply a belief in equality, yet our society has bastardized it and given it some incredibly negative connotations. What are women really saying when they walk around with their shirts off yelling about being ‘nasty women?’ How does this help? Are they really ‘taking back the power?’ Really think about that. What does that even mean? How does excluding certain women send the message ‘we are all equal.’ That, in my opinion, certainly doesn’t communicate anything reminiscent of equality. It is a contradiction to everything they claim to stand for. Your time would be better spent at home teaching your children the value of kindness, chivalry, self-respect; teaching them to set standards & boundaries for themselves so that they can make positive choices in their own lives, thus eventually rippling into the hearts and minds of others.

“Black Lives Matter.” Of course they do. “All Lives Matter.” Unequivocally. I find it abhorrent that after everything we’ve been through in this country, after everything generations before us have fought for, we still live in a time where this distinction is necessary. How can you change this? Not by blaming or segregating, but by teaching your children to choose their friends based on the content of their character and nothing else.

Climate Change. I believe it’s a thing; some do not. Your beliefs regarding its validity make little to no difference when you consider that there are things we could be doing to help preserve and protect our environment whether you believe in the effects of climate change or not. If we all recycled, used less energy or more solar energy, turned the water off while brushing our teeth, unplugged appliances we aren’t actively using, turned off the lights and the TV when we left the house (your dog doesn’t care about The View, I promise), put our trash in the trash can or a recycling bin instead of tossing it on the ground, etc. not only would you see a decrease in your bills, but you’d be helping to ensure the future of our planet. These small choices we make daily have the biggest impact. Teach your children to respect and care for their environment and your beliefs about climate change become irrelevant; you’re doing your part for the world you want your kids to inherit & you’re teaching them to do theirs. That’s all there is.

So, let me say it again:

Change starts with you. It has a ripple effect in regard to what you teach your children; if you want to change the world, start with your world.

16194956_1240064922755969_8824124583631119672_nNo amount of sign-holding, marching, yelling, fear-mongering or hate-speech will ever effect the kind of positive change people talk about wanting to see in the world. Nor do I  personally believe that tolerating and accepting everything & everyone is the appropriate response. I don’t tolerate racism, rapists, abusers or manipulators. I don’t tolerate people who would treat me as less than simply because of the color of my skin or my gender. I don’t tolerate people who mistreat my family and friends. Does that mean I’m going to go blow up a prison, get a group together to beat up someone I don’t like, or put on a mask and become a vigilante? Of course not (I’m not nearly as good a shot as the Green Arrow anyway). I won’t be burning down buildings because I don’t believe in the politics or ethics of that business or group of people; I’ll simply stop buying their product. I’ll never walk around topless yelling about my lack of rights and if I wanted to do that, I wouldn’t do it in America where I HAVE RIGHTS (but that’s a different post). You’ll never find me disrupting traffic & stopping people from going to work just because I’m angry & want the people around me to feel angry, too.

you-teach-people-how-to-treat-you-quoteWhat I will do is make choices to ensure these types of people are as far removed from myself and my family as is within my power, & I will do my best to teach you – my children – what it means to be people of character & integrity.  I will teach you to walk away from people & situations which make you feel inferior. I will teach you to choose your friends wisely, to sit with the lonely kids at lunch, to offer help to those in need, to get outside your comfort zone & not to place ridiculous standards or restrictions on yourself. I will teach you about humility. I will teach you about respect, both for yourself and others. I will teach you to apologize when you should & how to recognize when there is nothing to apologize for. I will teach you to work hard, to earn rather than expect. I will teach you to lead by example, & even, sometimes, to follow. I will teach you to share, to give freely, to speak kindly, & love fiercely.

You are not sheeple & you do not have to flow with the status quo; you always have a choice. You have a miraculous gift, both common to all people & still uniquely individual: it’s called a brain. Use it.

Not to sound like a cliche’ or anything, but…


Mom – xoxo


My Son The Garbage Man (Support Group For Parents Of Hoarders)

As a rule, I don’t usually clean my children’s rooms for them. It is their personal space, their mess, and their responsibility. For reasons that are not pertinent to this post I have decided to break that rule.

I am sitting, at this very moment, inside the confines of my son’s tiny closet trying to decide whether I should be proud of his attempts to save, recycle, and/or reuse absolutely everything or if now would be the perfect occasion to decide I’m OCD and just start hyperventilating in here.

Fortunately, OCD has never been my thing and I find this too funny not to stop what I’m doing and share immediately.

I am only on the third shelf of the closet and already I have found a strange and varied assortment of odd things my son has viewed as worthy of occupying the meager amount of space available to him.

• 1 empty glass bottle
• 2 empty plastic bottles (all bottles grouped together neatly on one shelf, set upright, and ready to be used for purposes unknown to me.)
• 3 separate assortments of broken glass (one of which happened to be a vase I loved. I expressly told him to throw it away. I just cut my finger on it. *evil eyes*)
• One decorative jar that was once upon a time sitting on the mantle above my fireplace. It now has stale bread and what looks like dried toothpaste inside it.
• Dental floss of all kinds. The roll out floss. The floss on plastic sticks that are packaged and sold for ease of use. Used floss. The only thing that saved me from throwing up my supper is my ability to tell myself, “well…at least I know he uses floss now.” We just have to work on the throwing it away part.
• 1 gallon jug of soapy water which I can only assume is in preparation for the apocalypse.
• A tree. Okay…so it wasn’t a tree. It was just a branch from a dead Christmas tree.
• 2 cheap plastic drinking glasses from Carnival Cruise Lines. We’ve never been on a cruise….
• A wide assortment of rocks & batteries
• The skulls of both a deer and a cat that he found in the yard and my husband cleaned for him so he could keep them. *evil eyes again* I don’t think those have a very good chance of surviving my clean up. We shall see.
• 3 love notes. In one of them he is asked if he can marry & kiss his then-girlfriend. His initial answer? “Maybe.” But I remember this day. He came home and asked me if kissing was appropriate for someone of his age (10) and I said perhaps it wasn’t. He responded again on the back side of the love note saying, “I love you too hunny but I can’t kiss you yet.”
Thank. God.
• 4 hats that he never wears, one of which is just advertising for Jay Auto Mall. ?? Another looks like it may have belonged to an Uncle Sam impersonator diagnosed with a severe case of dementia.
• A license plate literally hanging from a clothes hanger in his closet. I don’t even know why he would want to keep it, but apparently it’s important because it’s hanging up. His clothes aren’t hanging, but that license plate is!! 🙂 At least now I know he does, in fact, know what hangers are and how to use them.

This is just the closet. Only God knows what resides in his dresser, under his mattress and inside the toy box he never opens anymore. May the force be with me as I continue the pursuit of cleanliness.

What weird things do you find in your kids’ rooms (or anywhere else: your car, purse, refrigerator)? Am I the only one whose offspring is an aspiring garbage man? Please tell me I’m not alone…

This is Every Drop of Wisdom I Possess Summed Up in Two Sentences

Before you marry a person, make them use a computer with a slow internet connection to see who they really are. This will be an accurate glimpse into your potential future & will help you make the right decision.

With all the love in the world,

Why You Should Be Scared Of Your Wife (Or At Least Pretend To Be Occasionally)

Ladies, correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t there some sort of undocumented rule somewhere stating that husbands (boyfriends/significant others) are wise to retain some level of fear deference to their spouses? The same applies to the ladies in regard to the men of course, but we’re just going to focus on the one right now for simplicity’s sake.

I get the whole thing about mutual love and respect. I feel that my husband and I have that in most cases. What I’m talking about is, admittedly, a bit more petty than that..at least on the surface. Let me give you a real-life example:

image My husband is not always playful and lighthearted, but when he is, he  is dramatically so. I love when he’s playful and lighthearted. I don’t care so much for the “dramatically so” part. He doesn’t always know when to cease fire. For instance, he may get in a playful mood and put ice down my shirt or something silly like that. I laugh, I jokingly tell him he’s in for it and I repay him with two cubes of ice down his shirt. I feel like at this point, he’s gotten me, I’ve gotten him…it should be over, right? But no. He cannot accept this. He then feels that he must retaliate by putting three cubes of ice down my pants. It’s still rather humorous so I go with it and respond in kind. We both laugh. Then I notice that he might be laughing, but the look in his eye is starting to get a little more impish than it was before. You see where this is headed, right? It’s not just going to be “you got me, I got you, that was funny, now it’s over.” Now it’s a war. He needs to get me again and for everything I do to him he has to get me back twice as bad. Suddenly, it’s not fun anymore. Suddenly it’s not playful and lighthearted; it’s about who wins. Suddenly, he has a few small, nearly-dry wet spots on his clothing from where ice has melted on him and I’m standing in the kitchen, mad as a wet cat, drenched from head to toe while our dinner burns & he’s feeling triumphant as he’s holding the sprayer from the sink. And trust me, he ALWAYS wins because I’m not willing to deal with The Wrath of James Dean if he doesn’t.

I don’t want to see how uncomfortable his retaliation can get and I don’t want to see him hurt or angry so I generally give up before I help get him to this point. He does not give up before he gets me to that point. I get so angry that

A.) There’s nothing I can do to him that won’t get me something worse in return and/or

B.) There’s nothing I can do to him that actually has any effect short of junk punching him and I feel that’s a little extreme as revenge for a harmless prank.

Not to mention the (very trivial) fact that I’m a little a lot annoyed that I never get to win.

^ All that up there, while true, was my attempt at being amusing and flippant, because really, it’s supposed to be all in fun. Underneath the surface, however, there is a lot more to be revealed. Allow me to get a tiny bit serious for a second.

I honestly feel like when my husband starts something with me and I repay him for it, at least sometimes he should respond with “well, I deserved that” and let it be done. I’ll tell you why. Nobody can really claim to be the winner in that scenario, but when you push too much and upset someone, everybody loses. I don’t need to win so badly that I belittle or upset my spouse to do it. It makes me feel weak and inferior when I can’t seem to get any edge over him or have any effect on him at all. He just laughs at me or does something worse to me than I could even think about doing to him. If I blithely punch my husband as retaliation for tickling me or something equally harmless, (even if it doesn’t hurt) I don’t feel like his response 100% of the time should be laughter. Sometimes? Yeah, laugh at me…it’s funny that I’m a kitten pretending to be a tiger, I get it. But choose your moments.

Sometimes, guys, you should just let your girl win and make her think that punch to the back really hurt you at least a little bit because otherwise, you’re just slowly (unknowingly & – I know – unintentionally) beating down her self-esteem. And don’t make it obvious by abruptly falling to the ground if she pokes you in the chest with her index finger…that’s just insulting. You have to make her believe it. You have to let her know that she has an effect on you, she’s important to you and that your love and respect for her far outweighs your desire to always reign victorious. 

We get it. You’re the big, strong, masculine guy. You’re stronger than us. You’re probably faster than us. And a lot more adept at pranks, sports, shooting, manual labor, video games, gambling, grilling, navigating & beer pong. WE GET IT. We know you CAN win everything; that doesn’t mean you always have to. You don’t have to be a prick about it. In a world where girls & women are constantly told & shown how inferior they are (both to men and when compared to one another) we don’t need another reason to feel like we don’t measure up.

While I’m at it, it wouldn’t hurt you to point out things that she’s better at than you every now and then as well. Don’t just say, “you are strong and important” after she tells you that she doesn’t feel so. That just seems contrived and insincere. Back it up with an example. Give her a reason to believe you mean what you say. “I think you’re strong because ___________.” Fill in the blank. Don’t just tell her she’s a great wife or a good mother. Back it up with some sort of proof. “You’re an awesome mom because _______________.” Maybe she’s more patient than you are. Maybe she’s a large part of the reason your children are so respectful and compassionate. Maybe it’s because of her that they love to read or pray or retain some other positive trait that the world seems to be lacking these days. Tell her that. It’s a lot like being in a courtroom; the judge and jury aren’t going to believe your client is innocent just because you told them they are. They need evidence.

Your wife needs to feel that you’re sincere when you give her compliments like that. Believe me, I realize that in a man’s mind, “you’re so beautiful” is a great compliment and that they are being sincere most of the time. It IS a nice compliment and we appreciate it. You should keep doing that. But every now and then mix it up by backing up your claim with some sort of proof. Just because you feel genuine in saying it doesn’t mean your wife hears that in your voice or feels it for herself. In my personal opinion, since she’s the one you want to make believe it, you should put some effort into making her feel your sincerity as well. Try pinpointing specific things about her that you find beautiful next time and see how she responds to that; compare it to how she responds to the generalization of being beautiful & I bet you’ll see a difference.

And obviously, ladies, the same goes for you. I’m not just beating up the men because that isn’t my thing. You can take this advice and apply it where necessary in your relationship, too. I apologize in advance if I sound completely self-righteous. I just got fired up this morning & had to find a way to vent my frustration. I hope maybe it helps someone. At the very least, I got it off my chest.  :p

Now it’s your turn. Agree or disagree? Why?

All Moms Are Spies

I think I have successfully cemented my place as “the cool mom” among my son & his friends. They told me all sorts of personal fun facts they wouldn’t typically tell an adult: who likes who, who doesn’t, who wrote who a love note, etc.
What Minion #1 doesn’t realize is that I am now perfectly positioned to make sure he never really gets away with anything. I have teachers, other parents & friends that let me know what he’s up to and NOW I have even brought his friends over to my side. *Evil laugh* Just in time for puberty!!

I do believe they call this ‘good parenting.’ 😉

Psttt…Don’t forget you can vote on the Harry Potter Booger Vulture for another however many days I randomly decide. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, click the link for a chance to let your voice be heard on this very powerful & global issue. Share with your friends so they can vote, too. 😀

The Mystery of The Harry Potter Booger Vulture

Remember how I was talking about how funny being a mom is? Well, I’m back with another example. I was cleaning my kids’ bathroom when I looked to the wall opposite the toilet and I saw this:

boogervultureWe’re calling it the “Booger Vulture,” but really it could be anything. Someone even suggested it resembles Harry Potter on his broom stick which I can totally see. As a huge Harry Potter fan, I’m considering leaving it there as a decoration. Maybe it’s even magical? (I do know it pulls paint off like magic when scrubbed upon).

In honor of parental weirdness & the unconventional, grossly improvisational art utensils of children, I’m taking a poll. As you can clearly see, this is a matter of utmost importance, the likes of which all the world depends on you casting your vote. The encouragement and creativity of children is at stake here. I need you all to lend your voices to this discussion or else the world shall never know whether this is indeed a Booger Vulture, Harry Potter or something etched on the wall from poop. The children need you (to cast your vote). Results will be posted on a(n as yet undetermined) day.



Laundry & Love Notes

Being a mom is funny. And when I say “funny” I mean every single definition of funny in equal measure.

Funny haha, funny as in that’s not even remotely close to being funny, funny as in strange, and funny as in ironic.

Screen Shot 2014-11-13 at 10.47.13 AM

It’s funny all the places you find socks. I’ve found them in the fridge (in Daddy’s beer drawer no less, with a beanie version of Tigger stuck inside one). I’ve found them in the armpit area of Minion #2’s peacoat. In my yard. No, not just in my yard, but scattered all over it. I’ve found socks scattered across my front lawn that don’t even belong to my family; Like a little sock tornado sucked up all the lonely socks from every house in my subdivision and dropped them all at my house. I’ve found them in my car – or even better – my purse. There’s nothing like needing something from your purse right away and digging hastily for it only to end up turning your purse upside down in the pediatrician’s office, picking through empty candy wrappers, a few dead flowers, some lint, m&m pieces, loose change, a broken pencil, a rock and a cloud of dog hair until finally lifting up a worn, dirty, smelly sock and having to say, “oh, there it is!” (I give the pediatrician props; she grabbed the item with bare hands & refrained from sanitizing for a full two minutes).

Finding socks in weird places is one thing. Finding weird things in the laundry is pretty normal. I’ve found money, chapstick, grocery lists, other weird lists, large safety pins & cigarette butts:


That’s par for the course with parenthood, yes? And it’s usually pretty funny. The thing that’s not funny? The weird thing I found recently? The thing that struck my soul with fear? A love note from a little girl addressed to my 5th grader. That was not funny unless you count funny as in heart-stoppingly terrifying. (Maybe that’s a little dramatic, but I am a huge fan of theater and hyperbole so there you have it).

PicMonkey Collage

I have to admit, though the “I love you” part had me in a small fit of panic, the “you’re sweat” part made me giggle. At least she knows the difference between “your” and “you’re.” Now we just have to work on “sweat” and “sweet.” I don’t think those two words were meant to be mutually exclusive. You are sweat…quite the proclamation of love there.

I realize this is all very innocent at this point. I realize this is completely normal for this age. I also realize that this is the time for kids to experience relationships and learn how to develop, grow and maintain healthy ones. I don’t plan on having a ton of restrictions on my kids dating; I actually want them to date so they can figure out what respectful, caring, healthy relationships are supposed to look like and I believe the time to learn that is when they’re young so that they don’t struggle so much when they’re older. I guess I just wasn’t prepared for my ten year old to be so affectionately adored by the opposite sex just yet. I was prepared for many more pediatrician visits & socks in strange places…I’m not ready to find strange things ON socks just yet. :/

It is my understanding that this is an old note as his sister has informed me that Minion #1 is no longer seeing “Lanissa” & apparently has lots of female admirers at or below the age of ten. Like…a whole bus full of mini-Marilyn’s who will eventually rob me of my sweat sweet little boy. (There I go with the theatrics again). What little girl am I going to find love notes from tomorrow?!

Why does puberty have to arrive so quickly after birth? I’m going to go find a bottle of Jack & do more laundry & mate more socks. Feel free to tell me your parenting horror stories in the comments. They’ll likely make me feel much better about my prepubescent, soon-to-be hormone-laden minions making a marathon-worthy run for adulthood.


Shitoke’ Mushrooms & Motorcycles

*Dear Mom,

There’s cursing in this post. Don’t yell at me; it’s pertinent to the telling of the story. I’m still scared of you, but I can also run faster than you and I am not afraid to use this to my advantage. (That’s the part where you laugh, NOT the part where you chase me with a paddle…just making sure we’re clear on that.)


Your Charming Daughter


*Dear Everyone Else,

Pick on me for writing disclaimers to my mother if you must, but that woman can still beat me so I regret nothing.



Yesterday, I started a Basic Rider Course which is a motorcycle safety course for – you guessed it – beginning riders. For those of you with your chins on the ground, yes, I am learning how to drive a motorcycle. Yes, eventually I’m going to get one. For now though,  my husband will just have to share his. And no, you won’t be in danger on the roads. I’d watch out if you’re in front of any trees, bushes or road signs though…could get a little iffy.

Anyway, there are 10 people in my class & I sit at a table with two other ladies. The first order of business for the class was, of course, introducing ourselves and trying to get comfortable with one another. As an icebreaker, the instructors asked everyone to talk amongst their groups and come up with a collective group name. Apparently, I sit at a table with two terminally shy ladies because neither of them would discuss group names with me or anything else for that matter. They did not open their mouths at all.

The instructors turned to us rather quickly expecting us to have a group name readily available. We were entirely unprepared. Because my team hadn’t so much as made a peep, I sighed “shitoke’ mushrooms” because that’s what I do when I’m exasperated.


*Side note: It’s a habit that I developed because I didn’t want to cuss in front of my kids. Not to mention because I think excessive cursing does little to convey one’s point in the first place. When I use expletives I want it to mean something. I want a reaction. I want the kids to go, “Oh crap, mom said the ‘S’ word…we better do what she said.” That doesn’t happen when you drop F bombs like nuke’s over Hiroshima. In this case, my husband is the nuclear version of expletive use that you just have to throw on a hazmat suit and get used to whereas I’m more like small land mines that you tread carefully & then run like hell if you activate one.*

Upon hearing ‘shitoke’ mushrooms’ the instructors (& pretty much everyone else in the room) burst out laughing.  After everyone regained control of themselves, (& I explained my preference for not cursing in front of my kids thereby using creative phrases like ‘shitoke’ mushrooms’ and ‘poop in a basket’) one of the instructors wrote, “Holy Shitoke'” on the  board as our group name.

In conclusion, I’m now in a beginner’s motorcycle safety course and my group name is essentially Holy Shit. Nothing good can come of this.


For Really-Reals!

I think I like too many things.

Actually, I’m sure I like too many things. But more precisely, I think I can do too many things that I like.

In my head, I can work a full time job, run a (now) part-time business, raise three minions, get aforementioned minions to football practice, cheerleading practice, cub scouts & girl scouts all by myself on the same night, keep a 2800+ square foot house clean, care for 2 dogs, keep all my promises, help with homework, read bedtime stories, spend quality time with the hubby, write, take pictures, edit, blog, design, sing, publish a book, bathe & sleep. In reality? I think I successfully perform about two of those tasks each day and it’s like picking out of a hat which one I get to do that day. Today is a work & bathe kind of day and we can all give up any discernible hope of a Bethylicious book ever being published.

I think I like the super-mom fantasy land that I’ve created in my head much better.

In Mommylicious Land I wear a cape that somehow doesn’t make me look freakishly dorky, I have blue and purple hair, electric green eyes, I carry an iPad & Siri tells me everything I need to know about…well, everything. Hell, she even cooks and cleans for me. Two items scratched off my To-Do list already and all I had to do was fork out large sums of cash for electronics that will be upgraded to something decidedly more superior in six months! Score for me! And the best part? In Mommylicious Land, I have taken over The Bill Gates Tower of Bill Gates & have become infinitely more wealthy than Bill Gates could ever dream to be! (Also, Bill Gates refers to himself in the third person in my head. It’s something I’ve been obsessed with lately. Weird, right?) This ludicrous stack of money I’m sitting on allows me to spend all of my time doing nothing except exactly what I want! I can spend all the time in the world with my kids, send them to private school or have the private school come to them if I want! I can fly (yes, I can really fly in Mommylicious Land) around the house wearing nothing except my cape & combat boots because I look like a supermodel & combat boots are in style. Oh and since I’m in my own head here, let’s just go ahead and retract that statement about how I spend a lot on electronics because now that I’m living in The Bill Gates Tower of Bill Gates, I own all the electronics. I’m also married to Ian Somerhalder, neither of us will ever get old &  we live in a house shaped like a mushroom and all the mushroom dots are windows.

I desperately need to find a way to pack my bags and move inside my own head. There are no dishes in my head. There are, however, dishes in my real sink in my real house that we’re paying a real mortgage on that my real husband and I have to work real full-time jobs to afford and where we do not own any Siri’s. I guess it’s okay though. All Siri does is talk anyway and if I’m reduced (as the commercials depict) to making conversation with a piece of metallic glass, that might be an indicator that I should climb out of The Bill Gates Tower of Bill Gates inside Mommylicious Land and actually make some real friends. (Also, the fact that Bill Gates made it into my fantasy land is more than slightly alarming.)

Besides, my fantasy minions are way less interesting than my real minions & an actor for a husband is only appealing in theory; who wants to kiss someone that spends his entire day trading spit with numerous other women?

Maybe the real thing is better. Allow me to regale you with examples & feel free to add your own!








Real Breasticles Vs. Fake Breasticles – I couldn’t leave this one out, but because I’m afraid of what I’ll find if I type in the words “real breasts vs. fake breasts” there aren’t any visuals for this example, thankyouverymuch.

And with that mental image, I’ll say good night! Or good morning. Whichever.