Archive for June, 2008

Things that save my marriage, Part IV and V and…

June 28, 2008

My Luv is like a red, red rose…

The real thing that makes my marriage work?
My husband.

He makes me laugh. He gets my jokes. He has the softest lips—and no you can’t try them out. He reads newspapers—several. Everyday. Online. Paper. All of them.

Since he was a 10yrold paper boy.

He’s a walking trivial pursuit game. He Loves politics. He drinks a cup of presidential election for breakfast. And do NOT get in his way on election night.

He eats my cooking, even the weird new stuff, even the old bad stuff, all of it.

He likes my boobs just the way they are thank you very much. He rubs my feet.

When I can’t remember the name of some dumb celebrity that I swear I saw in that other movie, the one with that other gug, you know the one? The one with the eating disorder…yup, he can name him/her/it when all I can do is describe him/her/it.

He remembers numbers. Numbers from our first apartment 100 years ago, phone numbers, apt. numbers, the mailman’s license plate number…

It’s possible he loves our kids more than I do.

(And I love ’em a lot),

but I swear when he is “dipping” TK in a pretend “paint bucket”, (upside down while TK is screaming), THE ORANGE ONE DADDY!, or when he’s talking quietly with my oldest before bed about her day, or when he’s coloring right along side SassyQueen—

at those times you would believe that statement.

He makes the most perfect pan cookies. And he has been known to make his mother’s cinnamon rolls (from scratch people!).

He doesn’t have the time, but refuses to pay someone else to mow the grass.

He’s willing to do garage sales with me. I dare you to name a man in THAT category. (Comes from his theater background, he calls it ‘looking for props’.)

He doesn’t golf. I love him for that. He spends Saturdays with us.

Those are the things that save my marriage.

Tales from the recently Handicapped.

June 27, 2008

I asked the Dr. for a handicap sticker. Just for two weeks I promise!

Twice now, I’ve been trying to park and there were no parking spots. NONE. As in Drive over to ANOTHER parking lot and WALK back. And I actually found myself driving over to the other lot only to remember, oh yeah…I can’t WALK. So should I park in the handicapped spot and risk a gazillian dollar ticket, or what?

The second time was at the pool. Only upper lot parking available. We parked in the handicapped zone to unload. And then I went back to move the vehicle after paying for the kids (yes they made me pay even though I can’t get in the water…grr). I got in the van and was contemplating how I was going to make the trek down from the nether regions, when I saw a SPOT! An open SPOT right across from where I was! I pulled out, angled myself towards the open SPOT, and…some teeny bopper 17 year old boys in a ramshackle truck pulled in and slipped into the SPOT before I even really got backed out. I just sat there. Half angled towards the SPOT.

When they got out, I also got out (needed to show ‘em my fancy shoe) and half asked-half begged them to let me have the SPOT? I sorta assumed they were going to look at me, and go, uh…lady? Bite it, you were too slow.

But you know what? They took one look at me and nearly tripped over themselves loading back into their truck and hauled off to the upper reaches of pool parking-dom. Wow. Chivalrous 17 year olds? Who knew?

Well my sweet Dr. really did give me the sticker. But I had to ask. I keep thinking. Why didn’t he offer it in the first place? And my kids think it totally rocks. I’m just so dang grateful to be able to make the walk from the Wal-Mart parking lot without having to take pit stops.

One more thing. I’m late. For everything. Late for Sadie’s piano lesson (my 10yrold). Then late for the piano recital. Late for TK’s well check. The bathroom.

I dedicate this post to all mothers who do all this with a handicap. Mine is short term. I cannot imagine doing all this from a wheelchair, or with MS, or Lupus. Talk about heroes. This should have been my mother’s day post, eh?


Oh Glory. A MEME.

June 26, 2008

How sweet is this? Jocasta sent over this MEME my way. And poor Laurie? The exact same MEME. You all will have to fill her in on what she just got herself into.

Who comes up with these anyway? 8 things? Why not 9? Or 39?

I’ll have to bring out my handy dandy button today. Here you go.

MEME Button

And just so you know… there’s only 6 categories in the 8 things MEME? Isn’t that kind of…off?

8 things I have a passion for:

8 of them.

8 things to do before I die
Like a mini bucket list? How cute.

Retire to New York City.
Live for a whole year in Florence Italy.
A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte in the Chicago Art Institute.
See the actual island of La Grande Jatte.
Meet Barbara Kingsolver.

There’s more but you don’t care do you?

Eight things I say a lot.

So. I say so a lot. My sister makes fun of me for it. So there.
A lot. I say a lot, a lot. And I always want to spell it alot instead of A LOT.
And if I’m being really honest. I say Shit. Sorry. I do.

(a story). My dad was speaking in church.
He spoke right up and said he was raised in a ‘Damn and Hell’ kind of family and that’s just how it was.
My whole family crawled under the pews and nearly died.

8 books I’ve read recently

I won’t make fun of this, I’m serious about books.
Faith Preceeds the Miracle, By Spencer W. Kimball
Fablehaven, By Brandon Mull
Life of Pi, By Yann Martel

Glass Castle By Jeannette Walls

Eat, Pray, Love By Elizabeth Gilbert
The 3 book series by Nancy Turner:
These is my words, Sarah’s Quilt, The Star Garden
The 5 book series by Phillippa Greggory:
(Start with ‘The Constant Princess” and read “The other Boleyn Girl” second.)

That was more than 8, so sue me, a lot, I’m a nerd.

8 movies I’ve seen 8 times.

Princess Bride
Die Hard 1 and 2 (of course I saw the 4th one, you don’t have to ask.)
Lost Boys
Three Amigos (I can sing the buttercup song, can you?)
Saturday the 14th. But these last two don’t count. They’re from way back when cable was new for my family and they were the only two movies on. We watched them because we could. NOT because we liked them.

8 people to invite to do this meme.
Nope. Not gunna do it. You can’t make me.

Go Meme yourself instead.

And I’m going to have to add the extra two categories since it’s just way too short with only 6 in a list of 8s? Equality and all that?

8 reasons Memes are weird.

1) The title. Meme is dumb.
And unpronounceable
Let’s call them: Get to Know You’s.
We could add theme music from The King And I.
I really hate the music from The King And I.
Which reminds of that Jr. High Siam joke.
Where you say ‘WhatanAh” before everything, and then say it before Siam.
8 is too many anyway.

8 Plants in my garden. Because they make me happy.

Purple Coneflower
Crimson Daylily
Yellow Cannas
Centauria Montana
Blue Mist Spirea (Bee attractor I dub thee)
Korean Spice Viburnum (Absolutely NOTHING smells better than this flower in spring!)
Basket of Gold
Jupiter’s Beard (Who comes up with these names?)

And lavender. Because it is bursting out there right now.


A Blogger Story.

June 25, 2008

I have a little blogging story to tell you.

I began my blog (this blog) 7 months ago. And in that month, I entered exactly one post.
And I felt stupid. Wanna see that first post? No? I thought so.

Then a month later, I wrote another post. A real one this time. It was okay. But still felt kinda dumb.

My SIL emailed me the very next month, to tell me that she was starting a blog, and did I want to read it. Well, yeah. Actually. I did. And I was totally jealous. I was all…if she can do that and not feel dumb about sharing with the WHOLE WORLD. Than dang-git, I could too. And I banged out this post. And yeah, I know. You don’t care about all that.

But just like that I was hooked. And just like a lot of you (and by that I mean all of you) I was addicted. I added google ads, but that was pointless. I thought about adding Blogher ads, but haven’t….yet.

I began getting a few comments. I began reading and (once I was brave enough), commenting on a lot of blogs. A LOT.

I began teaching myself about any and everything I could google or read about blogging. I kept on blogging. And reading. And fast forward to now.

I was just kicked off! Just like that. I mean, I was good to them wasn’t I? I added their button dutifully. I blogged about them here. And I didn’t have to jump any hoops or anything, I just asked Megan to be added to her list of blogs. I even just made a sale on my shopblog off a direct referral from In fact… I love her. Sniff…Sniff.

Would you like to know why? Why I’ve been banned from their all powerful LIST?

Yup. I didn’t even know there was a fight going on? And I certainly had no idea who Guy Kawasaki was. (I still don’t, but anyway). Turns out if you make it onto, you get booted from Are you following me? Because I’m all, All these All’s are kind of making my head spin. And my ego.

My blog made it onto in the mommy section. And here’s the best part. I got booted off in order to have my blog listed in a dead heat for last place on Classic, eh?

So there’s my story. Go figure.

And then go add your blog to And kiss Megan when you get there, because she stopped taking my calls.

Megan has begun taking my calls. (you can see her comment below) And she cleared up all the HISTORY for me. Click that and you will understand now too. Guy (by the way) has NOT called. So that should tell you something! I’m starting to think AllMediocre was/is the better choice! Thanks Megan for understanding all the same.


Blogger tips and tricks: Mommy wants a Signature

June 24, 2008

I want one of those signature thingys at the bottom of my post? Everyone else has one.

How can I get it?

The tip…

Angie found this one. Goto the site and create your own name Signature. It spits out the code. (Or make one of someone else’s name for an April Fool’s joke?)

TipJunkie also suggested this one.

You can cut and paste the code directly into your post ‘edit HTML’ view.

And the trick…

Once you have the HTML code you don’t want to keep cutting and pasting the code into your post editor every single time, right? (Go ask Jamie about it.)

Here’s how to automate it. And remember it will not change the PAST posts (that was confusing me up). You won’t see it until you actually create a new post.

Anyway. In the Dashboard.

Goto Settings.

Then Formatting.

Then scroll down to the box at the bottom.

It says Post Template.

Type a P in the middle of two surrounding pointy triangle brackets . (Blogger thinks I don’t want to show you my example code. Sheesh, it’s not like I’m trying to show you my bra or something?

(That P in brackets will make a paragraph break and saves extra time hitting return when you are ready to type your post. Trust me, just do it.)

Now paste in the HTML code from your signature after the paragraph code. Save it and then hit create new post. Should be able to see your signature waiting for you every time you post now. (But only on the current and future posts).

You can also upload code this way directly from a photobucket account if you have made your own signature.

If you need help email me. If you figure it out, let me know so I can gush over your triumph!

Tune in next time, for:

Does this Banner make my blog look too big? How to fix a header that is too wide for it’s britches. Probably looks like a muffintop. Go ask Ms. SassyPants if you don’t believe me.

MORE bloggy tutes


Lake Stink

June 23, 2008

Do you know what the Great Salt Lake smells like? It smells like sulfur. Yup. Rotten Egg Fart kind of sulfur.

Great Salt Lake

And right now i’ts knocking on my back door. I’ts playing on my swing-set and really wants my kids to come out and play. But it especially would like to be invited inside for cookies and milk.

In winter we get Lake Effect Snow.

But in the summer we get Lake Effect Stink. Even where I live– 30 miles downwind! The wind churns up the lake and then heads South. Happens every time.

wants a playdate.

Photo credit:


Seen a Good Thing?

June 21, 2008

Me too.

Meet new people?

Me too.

I’d like to share some of what I loved this week.

Email me your favorites and I’ll share those too.

This was sad. But real. Bless her.

It all started at Kent State University.

Right in the middle she lists this:

1. Why can some people have twins, triplets, quads, etc. and are able to handle it?
2. Why can other people have twins with siblings and can handle it?
3. Why would God take my babies?
4. What did I do to prove to God that I could not handle it?

In Birds Nest posted some pictures, and this one says it all. That dad is great.

And Blog of Beth and Babes had some ‘Dirty Talk’, and Dirty pictures for you.

Mommy Pie. My new twitter friend.

She says, “How a stupid waste of time reinforces my faith in humanity.”
I only barely get twitter. She seems to have it down. Go. Learn. Then click her twitter button.
(My Twitter name is rogbark. I know. But anything related to my blog name was taken.)

I love the Lolly Jane Boutique. I want my blogshop to look just like hers. (Do you think she’ll mind?) And I want someone else to do it. I can’t find the time to prettify it.

Angie has perfected the Scientific Method. With some help from her son and um..pee.

And now do you want to know why? Why I’m sharing some good things I’ve seen along my blog-hopping trek this week?

Because Goodmom/Badmom linked to my blog last week. (And I want to pass it on). I suggested this silly little gem. But. Instead.

They linked to my 9/11 story.

And today I’d like to follow up. And say thanks.

Thank you internet for hearing me out. And for your comments.

I want to share some responses.

From Jacki
I always enjoy reading someone’s 9/11 story. I mean, not because it was a fun event, but it gives another perspective on it. The thing that always sticks with me is that my dad was supposed to be on the plane that crashed in to the Pentagon, but at the last minute his company put him on another flight.

From Kat
Wow. Great post, and interesting to me to hear your story. I was living in NYC with my boyfriend then – his dad worked in the WTC but was home with a cold that day. We didn’t know that though, and my boyfriend walked from Washington Heights, where we lived, to his parent’s apartment in Stuyvesant town where his parents lived because we couldn’t get them on the phone. Scary, but turned out well for us. Glad your husband was okay.

From Givinya De Elba
Wow. Thankyou for writing that.
At the very same time, I was woken up here (just after midnight) in Australia by my agitated husband urgently saying, “Come and see the news!” CNN was on three of our TV channels and your ABC was on the other – and we all started freaking out.
And the whole time, half a world away, you (and thousands of others) were going through … THAT. I’m so sorry that those things happened.

From cndymkr / jean
I’m so glad you wrote about this. I still think about that day and I always will. My husband (a cop in NJ) was called into work to block the GW bridge on the NJ side. I waited hours to hear from him. I knew that he was not near the towers but I didn’t know what else was going on there. He was gone two days. He came home when so many didn’t. I still can’t look at a plane in the sky without replaying that second plane hitting the tower.

I didn’t really plan to have the whole world read my little housewife version. I had maybe ten readers when I wrote that. (And half were family-hi mom!).

And so many people were and are so much worse off.

I totally get that Everyone in America and the world were affected by this. My parents in small-ville USA who usually only read the local paper, were shocked and scared and upset just the same as you and I. I honestly get that.


Parenting Today. But maybe not tomorrow.

June 20, 2008

UPDATE: At bottom of post….

I tried it.

I had been against it. But I gave it a chance. I see a bunch of you doing it. But I just couldn’t see how it would work with my midnight schedule?


I got up BEFORE the kids did. That part was made effortless by the fact that last night turned into a No Bears Are Out Tonight kind of night. (Yes, my 4 year old was still up at 10:45PM.) I think they were all sleeping by 11 though?

Anyhoo… Hubby had an early meeting, he kissed me goodbye. I rolled over and thought. Maybe today’s the day. The day I get up early and check all your blogs without anyone screaming “I want to watch Ben 10!” or “Chocolate Milk!” or “Mom, she’s doing it again, make her stop!”.

And you know what? You all were right. It’s better than reclining poolside at a secluded resort in the Mediterranean, sipping margaritas. (Although I have no idea what that would be like. The Mediterranean OR the margaritas.)

But you know what I mean, don’t you?

And because I enjoyed it that much?

I’m sharing.

Some pictures of my vegetable garden. A.K.A. Carissa’s Mediterranean in a box. My kids know how much I love my little garden babies. And to cheer up Arizona’s concrete jungle.

Lettuce, tomatoes (in the tires–I’m a little bit redneck…), cucumbers, and beans. But you can’t see the beans, they’re kinda tiny.

Not yet.
It wants to grow up to be a Purple Coneflower.
Couple more days first.

I need flowers.
I require them for sanity.

All Right. Who knew the tires would be so popular…?

The tires make me happy. I admit my garden geekiness. They keep my little plants warmer (especially in the spring and fall nights-by retaining some heat of the day). They help to build up the soil. They help to prop up the plants. And they are so totally recycled. You don’t want to get me started on gardening…it would take me hours, and hours and hand cramping.


Heads Up.

June 19, 2008
Here’s a link to Classy Chaos. Her post today inspired me enough for a second posting. Go add YOUR link.
Yesterday they got hair cuts. Cuh-huh-uts. They wanted short-short. (Note the length in the pictures below). (Note the bed heads).


Boredom Buster Summer Ideas for Kids

June 19, 2008
Welcome to the Summer ’08 Boredom Buster Series!
Please enjoy and then take a peak at this year’s Series!

This summer my girls have made a list.

A very long list. Complete with categories. Complete with 8 different 30 minute activities per day. That’s a total of 4 hours of don’t ask mom, “What can I do?”
Because Mom will reply, “have you checked the LIST?”.

First item on the list:


They spent most of an HOUR (think about that…a whole hour entertaining themselves) reading through a couple kid cookbooks and all my back issues of Everyday Food.


They came up with lots of things they can make.


They made a list of ingredients we didn’t have on hand.

And after Dad (with mom riding the Jazzy rider thing in the grocery store…you know the one…Hey. It was my first outing after the foot surgery) bought those necessary ingredients…

They made Strawberry Bread. Yup. After pouring over cookbooks. They weren’t going to start out small. No. Sir. Ree.

See the little loaf pans, ready to enter the oven? Yeah, they can’t see ’em either.

Because what’s the point of cooking anything until you’ve licked the beaters, eh?

Suggested Serving? WITH cream cheese. And they put it on the list and we bought it. You bet your beautiful patooti they were eating it WITH cream cheese.
And it WAS good with cream cheese. (But it smelled better.)

Would you like to know what else is on their Summertime Doldrums List?
Cuz, I’ll be posting it next week.

(see Part II, and part III.)