REALLY working....

I'm going into the office all this week to work on getting more designs drawn up for the sales book and website. 

The past 3 days I've spent an entire 8 hours just at the computer designing.

My right arm feels like it just might fall off, and my hand is starting to cramp.  I'm not touching that mouse again.

Until tomorrow!

When I get home and the last thing I want to do is get on the computer.

Which is kind of a shock, because I love being at the computer.  

So much, in fact, that the first place the kids go to look for me is at my desk!!

For now, I am going to go rest my aching arm and watch American Idol (I hope Lee wins).

I will leave you all with this ~ a picture of what I found when I got home yesterday.


Winding down to gear up

Were are coming to the end of another school year.  This is the last week of classes then summer break.

Who knows what we'll do over the summer.

Swim alot, I guess.

Last Friday, the middle school had an Extravaganza Day.  Which basically meant they had a goof off day!  They had a bunch of games and activities out on the football field, and rented a huge inflatable slide they turned into a water slide with a hose.

It was the hit of the Extravaganza.

Each class also gave out awards for certain achievements the students made through out the year.  R got a trophy for having a GPA between 3.8-4.0.

When I asked her what her exact GPA was, she couldn't remember.  She thinks it might be around a 3.9.  

She's such a brainiac, I'm so proud of her!

So, we'll have a summer by the pool then it's back to the ol' grind stone.  I am not looking forward to it.

It's going to be S's last year in school.  Yup, she graduates in May of 2011.  And R is going to be a Junior.  She's now in high school!!


I have 2 more years of D in middle school, then she's in high school.

But I don't want to think about that.

I just want to think about us all in the pool this summer having fun.

It's easier that way...


Friday ramblings and some photos

I woke up this morning thinking there was something I wanted to get done today, and now I can't remember what it was.

So I'll blog instead.

I'm being very productive.

Yesterday was the first time in a very long time all three girls were home at the same time.  We had dinner together, then after the dishes were done, headed out to the pool.

They played.  

I took pictures.

Mom bought some pool toys, and they had a blast.

They played 'baseball'.

And took turns at bat . 

With no arguing.  And they tend to make weird faces when hitting the ball!  

They had a blast jumping (or being voluntarily pushed) off the diving board onto "The Turtle".

Or just tipping each other over in it!

You gotta love the face dive!  Which may, or may not, have been performed on purpose.

S did a booty dance, then wanted me to get pics of her doing toe touches off the diving board.

R had to attempt a herkie.  She wasn't so good at it.  I think she needs more practice!

R & D piled on to "The Turtle" and made faces at the camera while attempting to maintain their balance.

S wasn't much help.  

At all.

Another face plant by D!!  She's getting very good at those!

I think they had the most fun just falling (or getting tipped) off "The Turtle"!

We were out until nearly 8, and I was loosing the light, plus it was time for the kids to get ready for bed.  

Now I have to learn how to take action photos in low light.

So I'm off now to Google some photography tips!!


Hunting for breakfast

Lately, when Sean gets up at 3 or 4 in the morning he lets the dog out.

And the cats.

I could kill him.

I think he secretly wants them to get knocked up.

Shit Head.

Because I'll be the one dealing with the whole thing.

Anyway, when I get up (at 5:00.  I've been sleeping in an extra 15 minutes!!) I'll open up all the doors because it's been so nice in the morning, and the cats can come back in.

This morning, Piper decided to bring in some breakfast.

I guess she climbed one of the two trees in the back yard and stole an egg from a bird's nest!  How an indoor cat, who has only 'hunted' cockroaches in the garage, knows an egg is yummy, is amazing.

She come mewing (or is it mewling?) into the house and I pretty much ignored her, because she does that a lot.  Then R says that Pipe has something and sure enough...


She dropped it on the dinning room floor and it cracked a bit, and R wanted to see if it had a baby bird in it.  I couldn't tell by holding it up to the light, but it had some clear fluid leaking from the crack, so I figured if a baby was in it, it won't live.

R put it outside and Piper swatted it around a little and cracked it all the way open.

She went to town eating it up.  Except the yolk.  You'd think that'd be the best part, but I guess not.  Even ET came over to check it out.  

Apparently, it's not good enough for her, because after sniffing it, she turned up her nose and walked away!

After eating most of the slime and leaving the yolk and shell, Pipe decided to either a) get some exercise, b) have fun or c) do some more hunting.

Because she headed up into a tree again.



Why do old ladies all seem to have the same hair style?


So, about the girls choir concert....

Let me first tell you, I do not like the middle school choir director.  I didn't like him the first time I met him when Savvy started choir in 6th grade; 5 years ago.

Sometimes you meet someone and right off you just don't get a good vibe from them, and they just get on your nerves.  That's how I feel about this guy.

You know how every class has that one looser who says and does whatever he thinks the in crowd wants him to say and do hoping to be in their clique?  Only to be the one who is always ostracized?

That's how this guy acts.  Except he's an adult and the clique he's trying to impress are a group of 6, 7 and 8th graders.  

None of the kids respect him, they run all over him and he tries to be their friend by bribing them with food and candy.

Anyway, the concert wasn't too long ~ and hour and 15 minutes.  But I was 15 minutes late, so it was only an hour for me!!
Out of about 12 songs, there were 4 solos ( the rest of the "soloists" sang a verse or two of each song with the rest of the choir on back-up)

And I know these are middle school kids, and not every one of them can sing, but if they are clearly tone deaf and sound like an American Idol audition gone bad, please don't let them up there solo.

Three of those solos were worth listening to, though.

One gal sang Bon Jovi's 'It's My Life', and kudos to her for having the guts to get up in front of about 100 people and singing.

But she really shouldn't have.


I can't sing worth crap, and I think I could've done better than her!

I enjoy listening to my kids sing, I do not enjoy listening to other kids who can't.

The choir director hasn't the balls to tell kids like her they're not cut out for a solo.  

Because then they might hate him.

I know I sure do.

For allowing them to sing!!

He was also very unorganized, and on many of the songs you couldn't hear the choir over his keyboard and the accompanying drummer. 

You'd think he'd know enough to turn down the amp on the keyboard and up it on the mic. 

You'd think.

THEN, then there were 2 girls who were singing and the mic was so loud that they hit this high note (rather badly I must say) that was so loud it made your ears ring.


I could feel my ear drums rattling after that performance!!

They ended the concert with 'We Are the World' and each student had an audience member (friend or relative) join them on stage to sing along.

My girls knew better than to even think about asking me up there!

I'll sing loud and horribly at home or in my car, but not at a school event.

Or any other kind of public event for that matter.

It was rather nice though, the kids were doing a good job.

Then the director had to go and ruin it by getting up to the mic and singing.

He doesn't sing all that well....

How my day has started out.....

About an hour ago I had the weirdest conversation ever ~

D was in the back yard talking over the fence to our neighbor's 15 yr old niece.  (I have yet to meet my neighbor!)  I went out to see who she (D) was talking to, said Hi to the girl, then went back into the house to finish what I was doing.

A few minutes later, D comes into the house and says the girl wanted to talk to me.  When I asked about  what, D had no idea.

So I go back outside, ask the girl what's up and she says:

"My best friend died last week."

(Long, silent, slightly awkward pause.)

I tell her I'm sorry her best friend died.

She then proceeds to tell me how he was 18, got hit in an intersection by a drunk driver and was on life support.  They then took him off life support, he died soon after and the funeral was on Mother's Day.

I can't say in all of my 40-something years have I had anyone call me over and out of the blue, tell me a friend/relative has just died.

When I said again, that I was sorry for the loss of her friend, and that I had to get back to what I was doing, she asked in a very worried voice; "But your daughter can still stay out and talk, can't she???"

I think the poor girl might've been a bit lonely....

After I finish vacuuming, I'll tell you about the girls choir concert...


Choir Concerts by Middle School Children

Every year the middle school choir has a Pops Concert near the end of the school year.  And every year since 1995, I've been going to them because all 3 girls have been in choir.  It's supposed to be a more upbeat concert and a chance for many of the students to sing solo, or show their skills on the piano or guitar.

Tonight is the concert for this year. 

And I'm so hoping it is better than last year.  Unfortunately, the concert then was over 2 hours long.  

In the gym.  

With no AC.  (Talk about the overwhelming smell of sweat and feet from hundreds of students!  Uuuugggg!)

It was hell.

Partly due to the length and the lack of AC, but also the choir director let every kid who wanted to, have a solo.  And last year, I think every kid but mine, wanted to sing.  

Then, to make the experience even less enjoyable, some of the soloists could not sing!

I almost felt like I was at the American Idol Auditions.

I'm hoping before she gets to high school, D will go for it and do a solo.
Because that girl sure loves to sing!

All.  The.  Time!

This year the director said he cut down on the number of songs and soloists for this concert, and it will only be an hour long.

Let's hope so.

Because I have a low tolerance for middle school choir concerts, with horrible singers, that last much longer than that.


Happy Mother's Day!

My Mother's Day celebration really happened yesterday. Mom, Jane and Janice came over and we did a little swimming, eat too much and played Catopoly for 2 hours.

What is it with Monopoly games that they last for-evah?!   Except for Monopoly Jr and Shrek Monopoly.  'Cause little kids couldn't possible last an hour playing a board game, much less 2.

But I digress.

Back to my Saturday Mother's Day.

Mom got me a gift that I was not expecting at all. A little while back we were talking and I mentioned how I would like a cake platter with a cover to keep birthday cakes fresher in the fridge.  She told me to look on eBay and while browsing, I saw some vintage cake and pie carriers.

Although not exactly what I was looking for, they were so cool.

And vintage. 

I love just about everything vintage.  Especially from the 50's and 60's.

I figured Mom was going to get me one for my birthday as we IMed each other back and forth about the ones we each saw on eBay and the one(s) I liked. 

Instead, she surprised me with three for Mother's Day!

She's such an awesome Mom!!! :)

 You can see how each part 'works' by clicking here.

R also made me a really cute mug.  

But she has to redo it.  

I set it on the counter next to the sink to hand wash, and the one time I forget to tell everyone NOT to put it in the dishwasher, S does!!

And you know darn well that if I wanted her to put it in the dishwasher, she wouldn't!!  

Damn kid!!

But it'll be okay.  She's fixing it right now as I type.

But, still.  

Damn kid!

Today was just a day to relax and do nothing.

For me.

I made my minions work.  Work I tell you!!  Work until their fingers bled!!

Okay.  I really didn't.

But I did make them clean the litter box, take out the trash and do the dishes.

And they have to get their own dinner.

Because it's my day and I don't have to cook if I don't want to!  (Which in reality, is like every Sunday in our house!!)

Well, I'm going back to playing.

So, Happy Mother's Day to all mom's.  Hope you have an awesome day!


Solitude Interrupted

This morning I grabbed my camera & after dropping the girls off at school, headed to the park to find things to take pictures of.

Just down the road from the high school is a quiet park with a small pond and ducks.  I thought this would be a good place to get some pictures of the new ducklings and not be bothered by anyone.

But first I had to swing back around and get these pictures ~

The school opens their pools to the public in the summer, and as you can see from the photos, they have a kiddie pool.  

Except right now it's being used by this mama duck and her ducklings. 

I guess Cindy and Amy, back at the pond, were going on and on about how adorable and smart and such good swimmers their ducklings are and Vivian had had enough.  She knew the perfect swimming hole where no one will bother her or the kids and the water is always clean and clear.

Whose the smart duck now?? Huh??

I then headed down the road a bit to the park, hoping to get a few shots of Cindy, Amy and their amazing little ones.

When I got out of the van, I saw a couple of ladies sitting at one of the picnic tables chatting.  I planned on just nodding a quiet hello and going about my business.

One of those ladies had a different idea.

As soon as I lifted my camera, she gets up, walks over to me and begins chatting. 

Fast.  And loud.

She had a very heavy Asian accent (click here to see why this could pose a problem) and just rambled on and on like she was on speed. And so loud I thought she was going to scare all the ducks out of the pond!

I did understand that the other day (at least I think it was the other day) she saw there was a "big bird with a very long neck" (a blue heron) and wanted to take a picture of it, so she ran home to get her camera but when she got back, it was flying off. 

I pointed across the pond to where it was and told her it was here.  She then said something about me taking it's picture. 

Almost demanded it. 

I had to disappoint her by telling her I did not have a zoom lens and wouldn't be able to get a good shot from where I was.  That didn't discourage her from chattering over and over "It over there!  You see?!  See?!  It over there!

Ummm.  Yeah.  I know.  Remember, I pointed it out to you??

The heron flew off into a tree, I squatted down to get pictures of ducklings and she, thankfully, left to walk around the pond.

There were only 2 families there; each had 4 ducklings.  And boy, are they all cute and fluffy!

This mama (I think this was Amy.  LOL) was not too happy I was going to the edge of the water and getting close to her brood.  She swam over, gathered the kids and honked a warning at me. 

I don't think she understood me when I told her I just want to take their picture, because she stuck her beak in the air and swam off with the kiddos.

A little later a guy came by with a huge sack of seed for the birds, so I sat on a bench by the water's edge and shot a few ducklings.  (I just love saying that!)

This little bruiser was not going to let those dirty pigeons have any of of the yummy seed.  Every time they got close, he would chase them off and snip at their heads!!  

It was kinda cute.

There were also about a dozen turtles that swam by hoping for a tid bit.

All and all it was a nice 45 minutes of quiet (after Chatty Cathy left) by myself.

Then the laundry and dirty floors started calling me and I had to go home to eradicate them...



Do you have any WIIIIIIDE shirts?

Last night, the girls were making fun of the accent they think I have, but I'm pretty sure I don't have.  


Because, anyone who knows anything, knows it's CRAY-ON.  Not CRAN.
Anyway, that got me to thinking about accents.  And how half the time I can't understand people who have heavy accents.  Like anyone from New Orleans.  Or a foreign country.

Way back in the day, I worked at a clothing store back in Massachusetts.  One of the sales staff was a very sweet girl from the south; Penny.  Penny and I would have some pretty good laughs.  She'd tell me stories, and I'd think things happened that didn't really happen because I had trouble understanding her heavy southern accent.

One day she was helping a customer when she came up to me and asked me a question.

I thought she asked if we had any wide shirts.  Not really getting what she meant (she was from the south after all!) I told her we had some XL men's shirts.

She replied, "No.  Wiiiiiide shirts."

Looking at her like she grew another head from her shoulders, I told her we had some 'one-size-fits-all' long sleeve tee shirts....

Again, she says "NO!  WIIIIIIIIDE!!"

So I say, "You mean something really big and loose?"

This went on for a few more minutes.  Her telling me "NO!  WIIIIIIIIDE!!" and me trying to figure out what she means by a wide shirt.

Finally she says, real slow; "No, Jackie.  Do. We. Have. Any whi-TTTe shirts!"  (Strong emphasis on the 'T'.)

Oh!  Any WHITE shirts!!!  Yeah.  We did.

The whole time we were going back and forth, the customer never chimed in that it was a WHITE shirt they were looking for.

I think they were having too much fun laughing at me.