Wednesday, July 31, 2013

20 Years Down!

I've done few things for 20 years consistently.  Actually, I can't think of much that I've done that long.  Maybe drink Diet Coke?  Nope, I used to drink the RED CAN if memory serves me.  Heck, I haven't even always been a Miller Lite fan (yes, I know... shocked).
I've been a mom.  That's a pretty big accomplishment.  And I've had the same best friend for 20 years.  That's kinda huge.  And now... I've been married.  For 20 years.  In a row. 
Yep, I'm astonished, too.
In these twenty years, I've learned a lot about not only love but life in general.  My marriage has most definitely shaped me into the woman I am today.  More confident.  Courageous.  Free spirited.  Brave.  It's the things that I like the most about myself that came directly from having the love of a good man.  I've been pondering how in the world I could summarize 20 years of marriage in a single list, which seems impossible....  but I'm going to give it a shot anyway. 
Compromise is cornerstone to a long marriage, as long as I get my way. - Mr. Davis
We didn't live together before marriage.  Once I moved into Hubs' apartment, I very quickly learned a valuable piece of information that otherwise may have made me rethink my commitment.
He slept on my side of the bed.
After 20 years, he still has it.  And it's still mine.  And I STILL want it back.
If that's not compromise, I don't know what is.  I should earn a medal.
Fight Fire with Fire
Lots of self help marriage books will tell you that if you have to fight in your marriage, learn to fight fair.  Never go to bed mad, that's one of my faves.
Whatever.  I think that's all hogwash.
Our method?  If we're going to fight, fight with passion.  Fight with abandon but don't hurt.  Fight with determination for what you believe. 
The make up is that much sweeter.  We just have to try not to kill each other in the process.  Oh... and leave out the eye roll, shoulder shrug or giant sighs. They only exacerbate the argument and get us nowhere.
Giving Hubs the silent treatment makes him happy.
My momma perfected the silent treatment.  She could go DAYS without talking to my father when she was mad.  I never really understood how much restraint and stubbornness she had until I became an adult myself.
When I give Hubs the silent treatment I'm not sure he even notices.  And if he does notice, he probably just likes the quiet.  I'm not really punishing him, I'm rewarding him.  I guess I need to develop a new signature move in the next 20 years.
The score is officially even.
I was a BIG scorekeeper.  I bought you this, what did you buy me?  I did the dishes for three days now it's your turn.  You wronged me doing this, so now I'm the better one (this week).
We are officially even.  Score keeping is absolutely stupid at this point.  I know that Hubs knows I do all of the work in the house.  I also know that he thinks he pulls at least half of the weight if not more than me.  We are both wrong.  The real slacker is our kid, who we drive all over God's green earth to activities, spend all our hard earned cash on and he doesn't pull ANY weight in the house.
It's always been us against them {the kids}.  As soon as I figured out we are on the same team, the score became even and we both win.
MUCH better way to live.
Men really are superior drivers. 
As we have tooled around town in the many cars we have owned, I have always had one constant complaint.
Davis drives SO SLOW.  He has always driven slow, since the moment I met him.  He brakes well ahead of a stop sign, coming slowly to a stop.  He accelerates slowly up to the speed limit and stays there.  He hits his turn signal the proper 50 feet from the stop sign.  He follows all traffic laws perfectly.
It drives me crazy.
One day many years ago I just couldn't take it anymore.  I screamed at him because we were running late (again) and said if he would just drive faster, we could maybe get there in time.  Why didn't he just GO??
His response was one I will never forget.
"It's because you are in the car.  I always drive safely when my family is in the car.  You're the most important people to me."
Communication doesn't have to be spoken.
Davis and I have our own language.  I'm thinking it's much like twins.  It's a mutual understanding of unspoken words... eye contact, gestures, facial expressions.  We have it down.
Chivalry does exist.
I've been told I have heavy feet.  I slam them as I walk, mostly because I'm always in a hurry.  I barrel through people in stores because perusing is just a waste of time.  If I'm out with my family, I'm always 30 steps ahead of them.
But when I slow down, interesting things happen.  Hubs puts his hand on the small of my back.  He grabs a hold of my hand or fingers gently as we walk.  And my biggest revelation?  He holds doors.  Every single door.  He even walks me to my side of the car if given the chance. 
Slowing down really does have it's advantages.
Will is stronger than oak.
It took me a VERY long time to learn that although I want to make Hubs do certain things, I will never, ever win.  His willpower is immense.  He is going to do exactly what he wants, when he wants to do it and how he wants to do it.  Sure, I can push.  I can rant and rave.  But it won't matter.  He is going to do what he wants, period end of story.
So the key is to learn what he wants.  See, even old people can still learn.
It's okay not to like the ones you love as long as you love the one you're with.
Man, we have really disliked each other from time to time.  Oh, and it is no secret.  I'm pretty sure even the Pope knows when we dislike each other.  I've learned that it's totally okay.  Love always carries us through those times until we can find our way back to one another.
Making fun is his way of showing affection.

I am constantly picked on.  In all fairness, I'm such an easy target.  I am gullible and naive to a fault.  I believe everything anyone tells me.  Seriously, who would lie?  That seems like a giant waste of time!  Hubs has perfected testing my vulnerability.  He doesn't hurt me but he certainly picks on me.  And he laughs hysterically at himself when he does.  In those moments, I see love in his eyes.
Our marriage comes first.

This is a tricky one... and one I haven't completely perfected yet.  When Bubba moved out of our home and the constant of high school sports finished, a lull came upon our house.  Little guy was 6 and hadn't really started to eat up our time yet with his own activities.  We stared at each other a lot.  We had a different appreciation for one another.  We started to see what unfortunately few married couples achieve:  life after children.  Quickly we understood - the marriage should come first.  Oh, I get that when kids are involved they have physical and emotional needs that must be met and spouses have to learn to wait a bit.  But ultimately - if your partner doesn't feel like they are the most important person, once the kiddos are gone they might be as well.
When all else fails, drop a John Cusack line.
I absolutely, completely love John Cusack.  From Lane Myer (Better off Dead) who is shamelessly dumped by his girlfriend for the high school jock and tries to kill himself, to Lloyd Dobler, the aspiring kick boxer who falls in love with a smartypants to my all time fave Martin Blank, professional assassin who seeks out his high school girlfriend, the characters he portrays have always made my heart smile.
So it's no surprise that when I'm down and bothered TD can drop a JC movie line and snap me right outta my funk.  Another super secret trick only 20 years could have taught. 
Stuff can wait.

I am constantly scrambling.  Rushing to get to work.  Rushing home to start dinner.  Running out to take little guy somewhere.  Running around the house picking up, doing laundry, doing dishes. 
Hubs enters the house at the end of the day calmly.  Usually having picked up the mail, he slowly goes through it at the kitchen bar.  As I run past him with maybe a quick peck on the cheek, I ask the same question every day.
"How was your day?"
I am guilty of often not hearing his answer.  Because of course I am running somewhere.   This is a HUGE work in progress for me.  But honestly, most of what is distracting me can wait.  It can wait 5 minutes for me to give my Hubs uninterrupted eye contact.  It can wait long enough for him tell me he missed me.
Because when we rush, we miss all of that.
Intimacy is not a distraction.
The sooner I figured out how to go with the flow and allow spontaneity into our (bedroom) marriage, I won.  Enough said on that front... you get the drift.
A united front is the strongest against enemies.
Or the children.  Or our families.
When I first married TD, I struggled with separation a bit from our family.  I gave them WAY to much involvement in my decisions.  And often times, I put some of their opinions before my husband.
And then I learned.  When Hubs and I lock arms, we can fend off the world.  When we work as a unit, we can accomplish anything.  And when we have a common goal, we are guaranteed to exceed it.  Wonder Twins activate.
We are different and that's okay.

Two people couldn't be more different.  We make decisions differently (I'm rash, he's a thinker).  We dress different (He prefers camo, I prefer hipee yoga comfy... yes, that's a style).  He likes radishes (EWW!)  We have learned to accept and rejoice in each other's differences and have stopped trying to change each other.
 I am worthy of forgiveness.
A stubborn, unforgiving, unyielding Scorpio.  That's me, always has been.  I have withheld forgiveness many times in my life to many people.  It is a serious fault of mine, holding grudges.
And because of this, I often don't feel I am worthy of forgiving either.
I make a lot of mistakes.  Every day.  And I carry guilt, shame and fear often because of my words or actions. 
Hubs always forgives me.  When I say the wrong things, do the wrong things or say the wrong things.  Big, small and everything in between.  He shows me I am worth forgiving.  It's helping me to learn to forgive others.
 Children define us for awhile, but not forever.
I will always be a mom.  Hubs will always be a dad.  But individually, we are men and women.  Children are physically exhausting, teenagers are emotionally exhausting and marriage is HARD.  But somewhere after all the dust settles, two adults will become their own people separate from the definition of parents.  I love the father my Hubs is but cannot wait to meet the man standing behind the title.  The glimpses I catch when we are alone make me very, very happy.
 He is my port in a storm... my one true love.
As much as I want everyone to think I always have it together, I don't.  I'm vulnerable.  I'm sensitive.  And I panic way more than people even know.
Hubs is my calm.  He has my back when proverbial shit hits the fan.  He is my biggest fan and my strongest supporter.  And has always been my one true love.  Destined soul mates. 
 I think our time for annulment has expired.
For years we have threatened each other with annulment (as you know we can't use the D word).  We have had moments of selfishness, of perceived unhappiness or even anger toward one another.  We've watched many people fall in love, marry, get angry and get divorced.  We've witnessed many friends never marry to later find themselves lonely, desiring what we have created (however amiss they may be).  We've commented how lucky we are to not be trying to date in the 21st century. 
In the end, we didn't give up.  We made it across an important threshold.  If nothing else, I think we have run out of time for an annulment.
Or maybe that was after the first year?
What I've learned the most is that neither of us are perfect but we seem to be fairly perfect together. 
We shall see what the next 20 years holds.
I love you, Mr. Davis.  Happy Anniversary! 


Friday, July 26, 2013


Good morning, friends!  It's our final Friday of July together!  It's so hard to believe just 2 1/2 short weeks from now my little guy will be in 6th grade.  Kings of the school, the coolest of cool.  And man is he feeling it.  He has made some new friends this summer and started his pubescent transcend into hell.  He smells bad almost all the time unless he has just stepped out of the shower (mostly because the man child never stops running and refuses to just CHILL).  He is orchestrating his first kiss with the help of his friends (god help me... that's a separate blog).  And he is at the convergence of three sports - baseball, football and basketball.  But for today... we will focus on baseball.

The Yankees are taking to the field tonight to hopefully clench the Championship.  If we succeed, it will be two years in a row.  I have blogged before about placing our kids in line with great influences but man have we hit the jackpot on this one.  This is our 6th year with the SAME COACH.  From t-ball to now.  And we're in a rec league that drafts.

We are one lucky family.

It's obvious that we love our coach as I slather him with compliments whenever I can.  But the biggest reward we have been given is not only drive, determination and heart is exemplified to our son every practice and every game, but honesty, trust and integrity.  You can't buy that kind of parental assistance.  Makes our job a whole lot easier.

So I'll kick off my faves with pics of my little guy.  I can't help myself.  We have an amazing photographer on our team that is taking so awesome shots and I can't help but take stock in them.


From then to now.  Little guy's first year of baseball he won a fantastic award, the Blue Darter.  It was a great day... one we won't ever forget.  But what I remember most about that day is the pride our Coach had in our boy.  You can see it in his face.

2007 Blue Darter Award

Now they have become friends.  The talk specific details of a game... proper position, proper form and proper attitude.  Coach expects more of our little guy and little guy looks up to him more than I ever imagined he could.  It's an amazing relationship to watch, one that fills my heart with pride.

Taking position at first


Little guy loves to pitch.  His Pooh even built him a mound in our basement which is just shy of the regulation length but close enough.  He throws balls every chance he gets into the backstop his Dad put up.  But this is when I love to see him most.  Last inning, pushing with all he has.  He gets a little nervous to start out but absolutely loves to close a game.  And thanks to his cousin Matthew, he has developed quite the great form.  I will say that I always feel like I'm going to throw up when he approaches the mound.  I wonder if that feeling will ever go away?


Run Forest, RUN!  When little guy gets his stride open wide that kiddo can truck it around the bases.  His flaw?  He watches the ball.  One of these days Coach will break him of that and teach him to run with pure abandon until he is told to stop.  For now though, he's been pretty lucky rounding them and getting home.


Coop is almost an all or none kind of ballplayer.  He either slams the ball out far into outfield or he hits it straight to the first or third baseman getting out (or of course he does strike out from time to time).  When he is on a hot streak it is so fun to watch his enthusiasm as he approaches the plate.  He has told me in secret that he gets very nervous every single time he bats but you certainly wouldn't know that if you watched him.  I love to watch his at bats and the pride on his face when he does well.  He hit a home run earlier this week so let's pray for a repeat tonight!


Although little guy loves the mound his real true position that suits him best is first base.  He is long and lean, moves quickly and accurately and can catch the ball most of the time.  Well, and it goes without saying that we have some fantastic arms on our team that can make that throw to first perfectly the majority of the time.  This pic has to be my overall fave - in action, catching a hit.  LOVE it.


Winners of the regular season.  First seed in the draft for the playoff tournament.  Banging out game after game with spreads in two.  And now... the finale of the season.  Tonight's game is hopefully the end of our season.  But with the end always comes sadness.  Because the truth is, we love this team.  We love the parents, grandparents and friends that come watch in the smoking hot weather.  We love the little kiddos that run around playing in the dirt watching (or not) their big brother's play ball.  And of course, we love the coaches.  Without them, this team wouldn't be.  Greatness ALWAYS starts at the top, friends.

Yankees 2012 Championship Winners!

Yankees 2013 (Regular Season Ender)

Have a fantastic Friday, friends!!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Open Letter to my Second Daughter

Dear Future Mrs. Little Guy,

I haven't met you yet but feel it is my responsibility to inform you what you're in for when you select my son as your partner.  The biggest advice I can give you to a successful marriage is to accept the fact that you will never, ever change my son (although you may definitely influence him).  He is exactly as he is and unless he decides to make conscience changes to himself in the future you are going to get what you get.  This letter is my attempt to prepare you as best I can because I'm that kind of mom (plus I don't ever want you to say I didn't warn you).

The obvious - when you marry him, you get US.  We are a tight knit family that would die for one another if need be (let's just not get that far, shall we?)  We are disturbingly loyal to one another and once you join us, we will forever protect you.  It's kinda like a cult.  Just ask my first daughter.

Speaking of, you need to be prepared to be EXCELLENT friends with my first daughter.  She is a lot like me - strong, independent, opinionated and a bit stubborn.  But once in her graces, you will be forever as long as you accept the above.  If you are a drama queen, you will not fit into our fam.  Fair warning.  We don't accept that crap.

Little guy is quirky.  That's the best definition I can give you at the moment.  You'll figure that out quickly (and it will most likely be what you love about him most).  Just remember he is both the baby of the fam and a Libra, hence a little self serving.

You will need to be spontaneous.  Little guy desires constant structure and is a serious planner so you will need to throw out spur of the moment life events to balance that out.  Otherwise, your life could get a bit routine and therefore boring.

I am forecasting that you are a bit free spirited.  You will love that he is fun and easy going but just know that he is extremely driven.  He cannot be pulled off goal and the majority of his life is already planned (at 11).  Jumping in the car and moving to Phoenix spur of the moment won't occur with him.  If you really love him and want to be with him you must know that he has priorities that most likely won't derail. 

Probably one of the most important hints:  you MUST be independent and have your own life goals separate from him.  He will not stop his education or career for you no matter how much he loves you.  He will expect you to do the same for yourself.  In the end, however, he will be an excellent provider for you and your future children.

Don't be surprised if he wants to wait a L O N G time to have children.  And don't be surprised if he only wants one or struggles to come to the decision to have any.  Again, I can't tell you enough how independent he is... aka a bit selfish.  Sorry, it's the truth.

Underneath all of his drive and determination, he is vulnerable and sensitive.  His greatest desire is to not disappoint.  You will see him at his weakest if he feels he failed you in some way.  Be careful with your words during these times (which of course you will experience). 

He is  S L O W.  Oh man, is he ever slow.  The good news for you is that if you let him he will guide you to enjoy every single minute of life.  The bad news?  If you are anxious or easily excitable this is going to be the single thing that drives you completely NUTS.  He takes time to process everything - conversations, events, decisions - everything.  He can do it - he just takes forever to get there.  You must be patient and not rush him or he will be frustrated with you.

He is not a morning person.  Period.  He has to get up at least an hour (if not more) before he has to leave the house (and this is assuming his items needed for the day (including clothes) are already chosen.  Again, see above.  S L O W.

We will be at every life event you have together (whether you want us there or not).  And when you have kids, we'll be there too.  Our family is our life and we cherish involvement.

Although we are territorial, I think we share well.  We will blend in with your family and try not to embarrass you to much.  But we probably will a little bit.  Sorry about that, in advance.

You will have the utmost loyalty and trust from my son.  Please don't ruin that - it's one of the things I love about him.  He comes by it honestly.

Your father in law is quiet.  He isn't shy and he doesn't dislike you.  He just takes time to warm up.  Tell an off color joke - that will get him loosened up.  The more real you are the more he will like you.  And don't talk to much about your hair, clothes or nails.  Oh, and if you like to hunt or fish (or have ever been hunting or fishing), he will love you immediately.  If all else fails, wear camo to our house. 

If you play your cards right, I'll probably like you way more than I like my son.  It's a good union, just ask my first daughter. 

My son has a very long fuse.  I hope you don't test it to often.  When he blows, it's a bit brutal.  He learned it from his Dad.  The good news is he recovers very, very quickly and is back to normal before you have even figured out what happened.  If you are a grudge holder this may be a bit difficult for you.  He will have moved on and forgotten all about it while you may be holding onto it.  My advice since I live it?  Learn to LET GO.  It will benefit you well to do so.

And lastly.... by saying "I do" it means more than just matching plates and hand towels.  We take this seriously.  The D word is not allowed in our family unless you are talking about other people.  We require serious sticktoitiveness... meaning you can't give up.  Times will be hard.  REALLY hard.  Sometimes you will be unhappy.  Sometimes you will be frustrated.  Sometimes you may feel lonely.  Running away is definitely the easy solution.  We encourage you to be different than your friends and family, if applicable.  To be stronger.  To not run away.  To stick in it, push through it and enjoy the sunshine on the other end.  No worries, the sun always comes back up.  We will help you find that sunshine.  And after you celebrate 50 years together, you will have figured out what very few people know:  life is much more satisfying with a true partner to share it with.  Oh, and love is kinda an added bonus.

After all of this admittance if you still want to join us we would love to have you.  We promise to never intentionally hurt you.  If we ever do hurt you, we expect your honesty so we can be forgiven.  And above all, we promise to love you unconditionally because our son will.

But I do sincerely apologize that you won't be able to get him out of bed.  Ever.  Good luck with that.

Momma D

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Lost Art of Authenticity

Watching little ones play I see true authenticity.  They are genuine and true to themselves.  They have not ingrained societal norms into their brains just yet.  If they want something, they ask for it.  If they don't want it, they might throw it.  If they are happy they jump, skip, sing and laugh.  If they are sad or hurt, they cry, scream and carry on.  They truly are genuine.

And then we step in.

Adults teach their kids acceptable behavior.  Manners, if you will.  We restrict emotions and behaviors outlining time frames in which they can be displayed properly.  We even go as far as squelching some entirely due to societal pressure.  I have heard many a parents tell their young sons to "man up".  Do not cry, do not show vulnerability.  Be strong.

My theory?  When we do this over and over the result we are looking for will occur.  We will kill their authentic selves.

Maybe that doesn't matter.  Maybe that is what we are supposed to do as parents.  Who really wants their adult kid sitting around picking his nose in public or farting at the restaurant dinner table?  Obviously some of this structure is required.  But where do we draw the line between creating acceptable mannerisms and altering authenticity?

My fave definition of authenticity is the degree to which one is true to one's own personality, spirit, or character, despite external pressures;  a particular way of dealing with the external world, being faithful to internal rather than external ideas.  Being REAL.  

I'm sure you are thinking of at least 3 people you DON'T want to see their real selves.  I know I did.

For me, it's a life quest.  Once I slid past the age of 40 I am constantly reevaluating myself, my environment and my authenticity.  I am tired of societal norms which define me.  Who says what a perfect mother should be?  Who defines a perfect wife, a perfect friend, a perfect sister?  And my most challenging question:  who really, really will love me as my true authentic self?  Have I become so good at fulfilling my roles that people may shrug away from my true person?

When you ask yourself that question, be prepared for the answer.  It may not be what you want to hear.  These roles we take on as siblings, parents, spouses, etc. are exactly how we are defined externally and some people cannot see beyond them at all.  We are stage actors, playing parts we have fallen into.  Some people stray so far from their true authenticity that they may never even find it again.  I'm not even sure they realize it's lost.

I hope that's not the case for me.  I strive to be real, to be true to myself.  I'm sure it may not always be favorable to everyone else in my life but it does mean everything to me.

As I rode in the car with little guy last night I took note of his authentic self.  He was singing at the top of his lungs (sometimes WAY off key).  He was dancing in the car regardless of who pulled up next to us.  He didn't alter his behavior even as I giggled and told him he looked like a dork.  He was his true self.

I'm going to work hard to not squash that in him.  Society will do it enough... I don't need to do it, too.  His goofiness and light hearted nature will serve him well in knowing his true self in adulthood.  I'm so jealous... it's taking me decades to try to get back to my true self.  I"m thankful for still having time to figure it out.

How authentic are you?


Friday, July 19, 2013


Ah... dog days of summer.  Man, we've found them.  It is HOT in Kansas City!  But you won't hear me complain very much.  I love the sunshine on my face, the cool water under my raft and ice cold beer.  Seriously... it can't really get much better than that.

This week I'm celebrating summer (and all that I love about it).  My list is totally longer than ten items (yes, always 10 in case you ever cared to count) but a girl has gotta stop somewhere.  Until she doesn't.

Enjoy my faves, friends!


The BFF has hit one outta the ballpark.  In a short visit this week, she introduced me to my new fave drink.  And what better a name than SUNSHINE.  Bring it on!  This tasty treat makes you think beach, waves and summer fun.  Mix it up with some Sierra Mist (or lemonade) and sit back and relax.  No worries, it will just happen!


Nothing says summer like the grill.  What better than shrimp and scallops?  Oh, and a little sidenote - check out that avocado salad!  Have you seen my youngest child, Avocado?  I could LIVE on them!!  This is a must try for the Davis'.  Click here for the recipe ---->  Grilled Drunken Shrimp and Scallops


Everyone loves boats, right?  How about this sweet ass ride?!  I have no idea what kind of boat it is except in it's caption it just read "Stealth".  Yeah, I think I'll take a ride in that anyday!


This is totally true.  Who knew salt was the end all to happiness?  Oh yeah, my friend CBone knew when she left the midwest for Florida.  She clearly had the tap on something I had yet to figure out!  I got the tears and sweat down... now if I could just get to the beach.


Speaking of beaches.... this is one of my faves.  Well, I think it may be officially my BEST fave (if that's a term).  Davis and I spent 6 glorious days in Maui back in 2004 and I'm thinking it was the best trip of our lives (so far).  Will be hard to top!


The grin says it all.  Four years ago when we went to our local shelter to adopt a dog we had our eyes on a beautiful hound that looked just like this baby.  Little did we know we would walk out with our sweet Bella.  Ah, Bella.


Davis has been planning a sink in the garage this summer.  Maybe I can sway him for one out back instead?  I absolutely LOVE this guy and would probably hang out next to him gossiping for hours. :)


Love the pants.  Love the white shirt (which happens to be my fave color, in case you wondered).  Love the Kors bag.  Love it all.  And look - finally an outfit with no scarf.  It is possible.


Nope, not for me.  I'm a morning person.  The little guy in my house needs some SERIOUS motivation to get outta bed.  Especially in the summer when he's running hard and wearing himself out.  Maybe I should just throw one of these at his bedside?


Oh my.  My heart is singing.  What cute kids!

Have a great Friday, friends!


Monday, July 15, 2013

Here I Go Again on my Own...

I'm officially a widow. 
Yep, it's here.  Football season brings about a whole other life in our house.  It's not just about the boy, either.  I think Hubs should have been a professional coach or something.  Maybe the trainer that jabs the cortisone in knees?  I don't know - but somehow he belonged permanently on a sideline.
Alas - he chose finance instead.  Totally similar choice.
And so, each year around mid-summer, I start to lose my Hubs.  His nights begin to drag out into the wee hours of the morning, forcing different bed times.  I'm totally entrenched in snoozeville by the time he comes up.
There are a thousand white boards in my house.  Literally.  A thousand. 
Well, except for this year.  He just decided to make it permanent and painted an entire wall in our house with white board paint.
Oh yes he did.
I guess I don't mind.  At least it eliminates the zillion pieces of legal paper usually laying around with X's and O's and plays written all over them.
Who am I kidding.  I'll still have those, too.
Although practice is only three days a week, it is countless in my house.  Little guy will throw down in the living room to prove how long he can hold his flutter kicks... while we are trying to throw down dinner at 9:00 pm.  Hubs is constantly throwing out play calls to the kid for memorization.  Both of them smell a little... well, icky.  It's not unusual to find little guy's cup sitting on the kitchen counter, cleats with mud clots all over the garage and MANY loads of laundry.
And me?  I'm stuck at home, most likely playing Candy Crush  (if anyone knows of a support group, please let me know.  I need to go desperately.  Like right now.  Shhh, don't tell anyone!) 
Sure I can go sit at practice.  That's productive.  Not moving laundry, not preparing dinner, just sitting.  Nope, not my idea of multi-tasking very well.  I simply can't use my time that unwisely.
Plus little guy wouldn't even know I was there (let alone care).
To top it all off, baseball season isn't even over yet.  Double elimination tournament starts this week as well.
Oh... and in case I was bored, it appears basketball will begin this week, too. 
So when I'm not being a widow, I am a chauffeur.  Does anyone know if you can hire car service to take your kids to activities?  Maybe hire a cab?
Just kidding.  Sort of.
True story - my mother called a cab once to bring me home from Landmark Skate Center when I was 10 years old.  I cried when I got home and yelled at her because I had to ride all the way home with a strange man I didn't know and I was terrified.  Yep, she was a mom of the year once, too. 
Have a great Monday, friends.  Try not to drown... it's only the beginning of the week!


, Jen

Sunday, July 14, 2013

All about FATE...

She is a mirror, shining back at me with a world of possibilities. 
She is a witness, who sees me at my worst and best (and loves me anyway). 
She is my partner in crime, my midnight companion, someone who knows when I am smiling, even in the dark. 
She is my teacher, my defense attorney, my personal press agent and yes, my shrink. 

But most of all - she is my confidant.  She knows my thoughts, actions and words before I do most of the time.  She has examined me carefully for 20 years and yet still calls me almost every day.  If that's not dedication, I don't know what is.

Although we didn't go to elementary or middle school together and didn't really know each other in high school, we found one another.  We coincidentally married in (and divorced out) of the same family.  Upon departure, we figured something very important out.

We were different from one another... yet perfectly compatible.  We were destined to become sisters.

As I reflect back on the last 20 + years of friendship, I can't really pinpoint a single time where we were distant in our hearts.  Even living in different countries at one time my thoughts have always remained steady on my best friend.  In the lowest moment of my life, she was calm, loving and supportive.  She spent countless hours counseling me through the grief of losing my mom.

Which by the way they share this same special day.  Coincidence?  I like to think not.  The two women I have loved the most in this life were born on the same day.  Cancers.  I should have known from just that smidgen of information we were destined to be tethered forever.  They are so much alike it floors me.  They share the same honesty, loyalty and sarcasm.  It's an amazing similarity.  But most of all - they totally, completely GET ME. 

If I ever die suddenly, she knows what to do.  She loves Hubs and my kids as much as I do (at times more!)  She would spring into action, protect and support them and pull them through with anything they needed... without even thinking twice.  She would bear her own grief privately to give them all her strength.  She is completely selfless when it truly matters the most.

And THAT, my friends, is what life is all about.  Having a connection, knowing in your heart someone has your back, feeling unconditional love... it just doesn't get any better than that.  We tried to explain that to her daughter a few weeks ago.  Not everyone in life finds that perfect friend that they will hold onto for life.  But when you do... hold on tight and never let it go.

Cheers to the best day ever - the day my momma was born 76 years ago and 34 years later my best friend came along.  I happen to believe it's fate because, well, I'm a dreamer.

I love this beautiful woman!!!

Have a great Sunday, friends!


Friday, July 12, 2013


Another weekend has arrived and I am stoked!  We are in the full swing of sun, fun and relaxation, forcing down time and enjoying life.  I am in love... it is my fave time of year!

Below are my faves for the week from around the interweb.  Enjoy, friends!


Backyard pool.  Beach.  Why not combine both?  I'm thinking this would be AWESOME!!


I love me some sushi!  I've expanded out a lot in the past 5 years and eat pretty much anything but sushimi.  This just screams to me.. I love dragon rolls!  Oh.... and did I tell you Hubs knows how to make sushi at home?  Heaven.


I love the 80's.  And I love wine.  Why not combine the two??  LOVE!


This is fantastic.  Yes friends, go somewhere new.  Even if it is in your own backyard.  Try new things and you will live life to its fullest!!


Newborn pictures are just so darn cute anymore.  Long past are the days with the Walmart canned photos.  People are getting so creative!  This one just screams to me!!  LOVE!


I love making stuff for my house.  This would be so incredibly easy!!  I love it's simplicity and obviously it's totally functional.


Hubs and I love to hike.  We certainly don't do it enough but when we finally get to a place where we can just pack up and go, I gotta have this.  LOVE it!


Love me some blueberry.  Love me some lemon.  Love them together.  YUMMO!  Click here for the recipe ---->  Blueberry Lemon Bread


I usually shy totally away from strapless bras as I hate how they bunch everything up. I can't seem to find the perfect fit.  So THIS is how the stars do it.  Do you think it works?  I envision an hour in the bathroom to emerge with uneven boobies.  YIKES.


Yep, this is me.  I am always, always singing in the car at the top of my lungs.  Heck, I'm always singing... period!


Way to kick up the old school farm sink!  I love this look... so simple yet so beautiful!

Have a great weekend, friends!


Monday, July 08, 2013

We have officially dropped below 100 days on our countdown to the arrival of Little Lentil! 

This is one proud Naan.  And I'm sure Sassy is happy as well.  She has crossed over the half way point a few weeks ago and on the downward spiral to D-Day (delivery day).

As I flipped through photo albums this weekend looking for a specific picture, I stumbled upon one of Bubba when he was a little boy.  Had I not been in the picture with him I would have thought it was Nugget.  The similarity was STRIKING.  But most days when I look at pics of Nugget, I think he looks exactly like my beautiful daughter.  Just depends on how Sassy he's being at the moment.

So I sat quietly, closed my eyes and tried to picture our beautiful granddaughter.  Needless to say it was much harder than I thought.  I kept defaulting to a baby E, which seriously would be perfect.  He just so happened to be one of those babies that was beautiful as a boy or would have been as a girl!  But I'll let you decide...

I particularly loved his drool :).  His big eyes and chubby cheeks just melted my heart. 

They still do.  I'm pretty sure they always will.

I cannot wait to get my arms around this new little one.  Now that I've experienced being a Naan first hand I can't imagine anything better.  Seeing the grands with such a unique mixture of their mom and dad along with their own unique personalities is so much fun.

And personality we have in SPADES.

October can't get here fast enough.  Normally I want summer to CRAWL but not this time.  I need it to FLY!

Happy Monday, friends!

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Another 4th Come and Gone...

I prepared myself to be a little bit jaded this Independence Day.  I'm still 1,600 miles away from my west coast kids which makes me sad.  Especially since I spent last holiday with Sassy and Nugget loving all over them.  Here are my fave pics of last year:

Oh, and Hubs had to work.

We started our holiday at the local community fireworks blast (and about an hour of rain).  Little Guy and I decided to shake it off - we played in the rain rather than complain about it.  After filling our bellies we climbed into the back of Hubs' truck and watched the show.  Although a breezy 63 degrees, it was wonderful.

The 4th brought a day of swimming, sun and fun with my BFFs fam.  Since she absolutely LOVES when I'm sentimental, here goes:  I LOVE THAT FAMILY!!  Not in a "aren't they cool to hang out with" kind of way either.  I completely, 100% love all of them.  They are fantastic.  Self professed "sisters", BFF and I have been together officially just over 20 years.  We have been through everything together:  marriages, divorces, births, deaths and every life event in between.  I can be myself completely with them, in times of vulnerability they are a constant support of me.  And in times of joy, I only have to look over my shoulder to see them there.  They are my true family and I am completely blessed to have each of them.  They show my family true unconditional love which only strengthens my belief in the fact that although we can't chose our family, we can certainly create one.

The last two decades seem to have flown by.  Our kids are older now - mine with a family of his own and hers driving and considering colleges.  Our little ones are still friends and enjoy each other's company.  Our husband's may not have chosen each other as friends originally in their lives but they like one another just like brothers in law would do.

I took the little ones (hee hee... I know they aren't so little but I can't help myself) to a concert Friday night.  Watching the two of them be themselves even though they are so different told me they too have embraced being family.  I cannot believe these are the same two children:

Hubs and I trekked down to our local farmer's market Saturday morning and hit the jackpot.  Fresh fruit and veggies galore.  We absolutely love this part of summer.  It holds the promise for me when we have our own little piece of earth we can sustain our lives with fresh grown food.  

We wrapped up our weekend attempting to camp outside.  Hubs and I absolutely loved camping in our 20's, often dragging Bubba to rivers to canoe, cook out and sleep under the stars.  Little did I remember that sleeping on the ground is HARD.  20 years definitely left some scars on these bodies of ours.  As we watched little guy snooze away, Hubs and I were reminded how much we have changed.  I'm proud to say we made it two hours.  By 2:30 am, we were all snuggled comfortably in our beds.  I definitely see an air mattress in our future if we attempt this away from home.

As I sit quietly this morning, I cannot help but take stock of how blessed I feel.  My family is healthy, we are happy and we are complete.  Whatever life challenges are thrown our direction I know in my heart we have the love and support of our family.  

I wonder if they can help me out with this scorching sunburn I picked up at the pool yesterday.  There isn't enough aloe in the world.

I hope your weekend was filled with fun and love, friends.  The middle of the summer has arrived and in just a few short weeks fall will be upon us.  Take time to soak up the sun, love those around you and don't forget to laugh a little bit!

Happy Sunday, friends!