Betcha Didn't Know....Mt. Washmore Edition

.....that all of my laundry is almost completely caught up. 
.....that that is a huge feat for me (or if you know me well, then you do know that).  I honestly cannot remember the last time that every stitch of clothing we owned was all clean at the same time.  Probably can't remember it because it's never happened. 
.....that the only reason it happened this time is because my nine year old son is bound and determined to own his own Wii because he doesn't want to have to share under-law with his brothers, so he lived in the laundry room washing and drying 16 loads of laundry on his own.
.....that he actually did a great job and didn't turn anything pink. 
.....that I'm thinking of hiring him full time.  Or holding his Wii hostage until I find 3,458,392 other jobs for him to do around the house that I despise doing myself.
.....that one of the loads that I JUST washed yesterday was a load of Kirk's camouflage.  From deer season.  As in last fall.  As in SIX MONTHS AGO.  But who's counting?
.....that also while digging through Mt. Washmore, I found a pair of capris that had been missing since last spring.  I had convinced myself that I gave them to Goodwill.   It was like the Tale of the Prodigal Pants.
.....that while telling my joyous tale to some friends last night, I received giggles and strange looks.  Apparently I am the only one who has a plan of hierarchy when it comes to laundry.  Who knew?  I thought we were all in this together.
.....that it won't be long before my laundry room is completely piled up again.  Because I roll like that.
Wanna play "Betcha Didn't Know"?  Well, c'mon!  Grab my button, plop it on your blog, and tell me something I didn't know!  C'mon!  You know you wanna!!!

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Tate On Baseball.....

Hey, Tate, what's your favorite thing to do?

Play baseball. 

How do you play baseball?

To bat or glove?

We'll say bat.  How do you bat?

Well, when you swing, you gotta step, um, into it, like your foot, over 4 inches of homeplate, because you are 8 of homeplate. And when you swing, you got to step into it.  And when your hands are right here, you just stay there and you can hit it if you step into it.

Wow.  That sounds intense.  What about using your glove?

If you really want to catch it good, you put your hand on the back of your glove so you can really squeeze it. To throw it, um, if you catch it when they, um, hit a line drive, then put your hand there and you can squeeze it.  To catch a grounder, then do the same thing just put your glove on the ground.  Even you can do that, Mom.

Sounds like you know a lot about baseball.

Yep, I do.  Well, there's still some more if you want to know some more.

Well, tell me...

If you're catcher, you stand on your feet like this and stand 12 feet away from the bag.  And you put your glove right by your face and your other hand back away.  And you catch it if the batter strikes out.  Then you need to throw it back to pitcher.

Wow. 12 feet?

Well, maybe 13.
I don't really know a lot about shortstop, so I can't teach you that.  But, I, um, I think you just squish your knees down to catch it.

Can you tell me why batters use batting gloves?

You don't really need 'em. You only need them for a wooden bat so you won't get splinters.  I just wear 'em to look cool.

You are pretty cool, Tate.  So who's your favorite team?

I have two.  The Yankees and the Cardinals.

Tate, do you love baseball? 

Oh, yes.

So who is going to win your game tonight?

Us, of course. 

What do you think the score will be?

18 to 2.

I hope you play well tonight.

Oh, don't worry.  I will.

Humble much? 


The Denim Jumper Production of Peter Pan

We've been part of our local homeschool group's co-op for the past year.  Fridays were co-op days, and I'd have to remember how to get up early, shower, dress in clothes that weren't made of fleece or flannel, and actually get my family somewhere on time.  How we ever made it to school last year before the bell rang, I have no idea. 

Once we got to co-op, the kids would go to various classes and learn about stuff that I would never have taught them at home.  Like art history.  And suturing a pig's foot.  And how to make a duct-tape wallet.  You know...the crucial things in life.

If I'm being 100% honest, co-op was way down on the list of my favorite places to be.  Come Fridays, it was all I could do to muster up the gumption to put on mascara and go.  And most days, the only thing I looked forward to about the day was that we would always go to The Shack for pizza afterwards. 

But I muddled through the year because the boys loved it.  The social interaction was a blessing for Keaton especially, and...well...they learned how to make a duct-tape wallet. 

And this past Friday night, it slapped me in the face.  All the getting up early and trying to wipe the obvious bad attitude from my face every Friday morning had finally shown what it was meant for. 

One of the classes that the boys were in was a Drama class.  They put on a great production at Christmas, but for their Spring Production, they were taking on the daunting PETER PAN.  It is possible that I called their drama teacher (also a sweet friend) "CUH-RAZY."  Both behind her back and to her face.  Because I knew the kids that were involved....

The thought of it just made me snort-giggle.  PETER PAN.  Yah...okay.

I ate my snort-giggles Friday night.

Because they rocked it.  Our rag-tag group of ragamuffin redneck homeschoolers busted out one of the greatest children's theatre productions I have ever seen. 

Now...we aren't Broadway ready, mind you.  But no one freaked on stage.  And everyone remembered their lines.  And no one was killed backstage.  SUCCESS!!

To top off the fun for the kiddos, they were granted permission to hold their production in the Theatre on OBU's campus!  Quite a step up from the church platform that they had been practicing on. 

Here's some PlayBill worthy evidence:

That's cutie-pie Tate on the right.  He was Indian Chief Great Big Little Panther.  And he said stuff like: "Yohr ow hewoah, Petuh Pan."  Nothing like an Indian Chief with a speech impediment.  Spoon-worthy.

Aw...the Lost Boys.  The traditional script says woodland creatures; but a prior church production of already-readied Noah's Ark costumes says jungle creatures for us!  We're a resourceful group, I tell ya!

Sawyer was the Very Lost Zebra Boy -- Terry

And Keaton was the Super Lost Elephant Boy -- Tootles

When Keaton wasn't Lost, he played the part of Father.  A Father who thought that the Mother was gross.  Have no idea how Wendy, Michael, and John came about.  Crack.Me.Up.

This is Father before his party...when his tie wouldn't tie.

And this is Father at the end of the play....AFTER THAT PARTY....it must have been a doozy!! *wink*

It really was an amazing production.  My friend S did a great job putting up with leading our kids!  We're so super proud of all of them.

Shame on me for wanting to pull our family out of co-op.....because if I had....I'd have missed this:

And that's just too good to miss.


Friday Brain Jumpings

I had hairapy this morning. 

I plopped myself down in the chair and while my sweetie-pie of a hairdresser wrapped me up in her swanky zebra striped cape, I told her that I would be her blank canvas today. 

I tend to have a severe case of A.D.D. when it comes to most things in my life, but my hair is a major case in point.  I can only stand to have the same cut for awhile, and then I'm bored out of my mind.  I'll spend umpteen months growing out on-my-nerves bangs, only to waltz right back into the salon to have her cut me a new set.  And I'd change the color of my hair just as often if I could afford the sticker price. 

Thank the Precious Lord, I have a hairdresser that I trust wholly and completely.  So today I just let her do her thang. 

And I'm so happy that I did. 

I'm now outfitted with a flippy swingy sassy new summer 'do. 

But you'll have to wait to see pictures...because I've worn all the day's mascara off and the big zit on my chin is shining....and I just found out that lots of folks in my town read my blog that I didn't know read my blog and now I'm suffering from major issues of self-conscious-isms. 

UPDATE:  I've reapplied my mascara and am now ready to be seen in public. 

Moving on.

While I was at hairapy, the boys were busy driving their drama teacher banonkers.  Our homeschool group is putting on a fantastic performance of Peter Pan tonight, and they have been dress rehearsing all day. 

I'm very excited to see the play this evening, but I am planning on stuffing a Xanax or three in my purse and slipping it to the director before the first curtain comes up.  Because if she wasn't crazy before for taking on such a huge project with our rowdy group of hellions, she, for sure, is crazy now. 

Speaking of crazy....

Did you watch Grey's Anatomy last night?  Shut.the.window.and.call.me.Edgar.  I think that episode drained 5 years off my life. 

While we're on the topic of my life....

In an effort to spare my children's lives and my sanity, school is officially out for summer.  No, we didn't technically totally "finish."  But, yes, we accomplished what we needed to to successfully pass everyone on to the next grade.  I think if we had spent any longer trying to do schoolwork just for the sake of saying we were doing schoolwork, then all 4 of us would be dead.  And I probably would have taken the husband down with us....just for looking at me the wrong way. 

So hooray for summer vacation!!

Speaking of summer vacation....

We're almost exactly a month away from boarding a plane for Mexico and holding down a couple of beach chairs for a week.  I've never been  more excited about doing absolutely nothing in all my life.  The only thing I'm dreading about the trip is that a swimsuit is required wardrobe.  And a swimsuit is the last thing I want to outfit my body in right now.  But I still have a month.....

Surely I will morph into Heidi Klum by then.

I'm sure of it.

OOOHHH...Heidi makes me think of famous people...which makes me think of American Idol...

What about that cutie pie Lee Dewyze??  I've been his Numero Uno fan from the beginning, and when he started crying with his daddy on this past week's show, I was done.in.  Love me some Lee.

In other news, our sweet precious niece Moriah graduated from high school this past weekend in Missouri.  We made the trek to Nowheresville to share her big night, and we were accompanied by more Budweiser t-shirts and do-rags than even a motorcycle rally could stand.  High.Class.Peeps.I'm.Tellin'.Ya. 

But oh.so.proud of her. 

Isn't she the cutest?

Cute.  I'll show you cute.  Have you ever seen anything more precious? 

That's Tate.  Our teeny tiny feller that breathes, eats, sleeps, and dreams baseball but can barely fill out the toddler sized baseball pants.  Couldn't you just eat him with a spoon??  I know!  Me, too...so back off.  I have first dibs.

And in an effort to be all fair in love and offspring, here are my other baseball stud muffins. 

Still cute as pie, but they've moved out of the spoon-worthy stage, which makes my uterus mourn.  Sniff.

On that note...

That's all.


A Story. About Scissors.

Once upon a time there lived a family.  There was a father, a mother, and three sons.  Though everyone in the family loved each other very much, they had an uncontrollable desire to irritate the ever-lovin' fire out of one another.

On one particular rainy day, the mother of the family was working on a very last minute project.  For the project, she needed her good sewing scissors.  The scissors being the ones that are placed in the mother's equivalent to Ft. Knox to keep them safe.  For the mother knows that if she were to leave her good sewing scissors within reach of her family, then they would inevitably be used for everything from opening packets of beef jerky to giving the family cat a haircut.  And this would make the mother want to scream at the top of her lungs and make unrecognizable noises.

So as the mother walked to Ft. Knox to retrieve her safely kept sewing shears, a funny feeling began to gurgle in her stomach.

What's this?  Surely the scissors are safe and sound.

The mother proceeds with extreme caution.  Surely her feelings are wrong.  Her beloved scissors with their pristine blades and sharp tips are most certainly going to be waiting for her. 

But, alas, as the mother opens up the cabinet and takes out the drawer which holds the majestic pair of cutivity, her heart sinks.  Then begins to pound wildly.  Where, oh, where, are the scissors?  No one knew of the sacred hiding spot but her.  Who could have done this?  Surely the scissors of such valued snippery were involved in some kind of cutlery rapture.  Anything but what she knew was horrifyingly a more likely possibility.

The mother turned slowly from the cabinet and drew in a deep breath.  With the breath, horns sprouted and fangs grew.  The healthy hue of her skin turned to a putrid shade of green, and steam became to vomit from both her ears.

The three sons who were presumably involved so innocently in a round of video games must have heard the stampede of terror that was heading straight for them.  Their faces turned to see their gargoyle of a mother figure forming words with her mouth, but because of her level of angst, no sound was made.  All three sons instantly threw up their hands in an "I surrender" position and then immediately ducked and covered. 

The mother began to regain composure as she questioned her offspring about the missing jewels of the clipper crown.  And though she hoped for a straight answer as to who had done what with the one thing that had, up until this time, remained sacred in her overrun-with-testosterone home, all she was met with were shoulders shoved up into earlobes and dazed over gazes.

The mother walked away to count to 3253 when she stumbled across something.  Something that made sheer panic squirm through every inch of vein. 

For there, on the table, were the scissors.  Those blessed slicers of wonder.  Covered.  In a hearty coat of tacky glue.

And 3 innocent faces claiming absolutely no idea of how such a blasphemous ordeal could have happened.


Once upon a time there lived a family.

The living happily ever after part has yet to be determined.


Top Ten Ways To Spend Your Birthday

10.  Have your sweetie-bestie-pie fly all the way from Georgia on a Hot Wheels plane just to surprise you on your birthday.  And although you are thrilled beyond belief that she arrives safely and soundly, you will hang your head in shame when you realize that she has seen your state's only claim to fame from the plane:  The Railroad Car/Mobile Home...a.k.a. The Clinton Presidential Library.  Welcome to Arkansas!

9.  Eat Krispy Kreme doughnuts without guilt.  Because everyone knows that having company erases calories.  You may also realize that your "Can't Say No" personality comes into play in most any situation, including the doughnut shop.  Evidenced by the box of a dozen doughnuts that you cart out of the place, just because the man behind the counter told you to.

8.  Get spoiled by your husband who decides that a great birthday treat would be to send you and your sweetie-bestie-pie off to the spa for a day.  What's that you say?  A spa?  That's right!!  Being handed your hubby's credit card and whisked off to a fancy-schmancy spa where you aren't allowed to speak above a whisper so that you can have an hour long massage and a mud wrap is the best present ever.  Walking out of the fancy-schmancy spa all jelly-legged is an added bonus.  Almost kicking your massage therapist in the nose because you fell asleep on the table and are a sleep-jerker is just funny.  Not that I would know anything about that.

7.   Eat ridiculously obnoxious amounts of food despite hearing your trainer's sceery voice floating through your head the entire time.  Decide to ignore the voice and just eat the food.  And lots of it.  And then leave mass carnage trailing behind you.

6.  Bring out the besties to meet the sweetie-bestie-pie.  Warning:  That many girly giggles in one place might prove dangerous to your health....or at least the sanity of those around you.

5.  Spend the morning with the oh-so-ever-pleasant folks at the DMV getting your new driver's license.  Because those people are always ready with a smile and thrilled to be of service to you. 

4.  Take your sweetie-bestie-pie somewhere that you hang out all the time, but that she's never been.  And realize that even though you think your state stinks in the tourism department, that other people might actually think it's cool.  Or maybe it's just that Georgians don't have hot water. *wink*

3.  Resort to major retail therapy.  Because nothing will make you feel better about your sweetie-bestie-pie leaving you the next day than buying cute matching outfits and a sundress that reminds you of sherbet.

2.  Take your sweetie-bestie-pie to a place she's never been even though you can't believe she's never been in one before, because true friendship involves new experiences.  Even when said new experiences are creepy wax museums.  Also looking like a giant in documentary pictures is a must.

NOTE:  Don't touch Jimmy Carter.  He has personal boundary issues.


Laugh. A lot.  And talk.  A lot.  And giggle.  A lot.  And be thoroughly amazed that God would bless you with such a remarkable sweetie-bestie-pie.

Happy Birthday to Me!!!

*You can read a very entertaining version of Tiffani's experiences here in the heart of Ar-Kansas right HERE.


Isn't There An 80s Song About Being Excited? Because I So Am!

She called me two weeks ago and told me the news.

And I might have screamed.  A lot.

And now it's finally here.  Tomorrow morning, I'm driving to the airport to pick up my birthday present from her.  And I can hardly wait.  I might even have to take a Tylenol PM to even be able to settle down at all tonight.

So I'm spending the day today getting all ready for the big day.

I'm not cleaning my house. 
I'm not cleaning out my van.
And I'm not worrying about the laundry.

Because I don't have to.

You see, Tiffani's coming!  That's right!  You heard me!  My bloggy-bestie-turned-real-live-in-the-flesh-doesn't-live-in-my-computer-anymore-bestie is coming here!  For my birthday! 

She's my present!!

How great is that???

And know what sweetens the deal?  She's scared to fly.

That sounded bad.  It's not that it's great that she's scared to fly.  That actually is very very sad.  But what is so fantastic about her being scared to fly is that she is flying anyway.  FOR ME!  So very very sacrificial and precious. 

So I'm not cleaning my house.  Because Tiffani doesn't need me to clean my house.  The crumbs on the floor and the pile of dirty laundry are what makes this house work, and Tiffani knows us so well, that she won't care.

Know what else?  I'm not cleaning out my van either.  Nope.  I'm picking her up with petrified french fries and 14 pairs of mismatched shoes in tow.  Because she wouldn't have it any other way.

There is something so very very precious about being able to be completely and wholly yourself with someone.  Someone who will just add their dirty dishes to your dirty dishes in the sink.  Someone who will leave their towel on the floor and step over the mountain of shoes by the front door.  Someone who will peek in the laundry room to check out the cute purple paint, not the growing masses of dirty jeans and stinky towels.

And I am beside myself with excitement.

Happy Birthday To Me!!!


The Slightly Inappropriate Gohjus Preddy Boody Nail Suhlon

Before last summer, I could count on one hand the number of pedicures that I've had in my life.  They were an extreme luxury, and, frankly, not a lot of people I knew got them...unless it was for a special occasion.

And now it seems that bi-monthly pedis are worked into family budgets like the H2O bill. 

Works for me.

Because I'm addicted.  My toes actually begin to scream at me if too many days go by before they are plunged back down into the swirly waters of the leather massage chairs at my local nail salon.  Just walking in the door of the establishment and smelling the thick fog of ammonia is like crack.  I have arrived at podiatrical nirvana.

If you live in my area, then you are going to know the salon of which I speak, but I think I'm safe in that none of you are their first cousins or anything...so I shall proceed...

At the first of this week, my last go-round with a spunky pinky color and blingified black flowers on my big toes had started to chip and crack.  And my cuticles were craving cleanage.  It was time.

I chose an afternoon that I was childless, because achieving foot nirvana is slightly more difficult if I'm having to break up a fist fight while a sharp metal object is being wielded in the direction of my pinkie toe.  I entered the door of the salon and was greeted with:

"Hedoe.  May I hep you?"

"I need a pedicure, please."

"OK.  You sit dare."  And I was ushered to the only empty chair in a line of other women achieving foot nirvana.

I removed my flipflops and settled myself down into the chair.  The release of tension in my toes was already letting up.


He started touching me.

Um...excuse me.  I think there is a mistake.  This person touching my legs and feet is young enough to be my offspring

You see, I'm used to the ladies doing my nails.  Or the older gentlemen.  It's their job, right?  But a 14 year old teenager rubbing scrubbing salts and massage oil on my legs made me feel slightly uncomfortable.

Like gripping the armrests of my chair uncomfortable.
And I was looking for the police.  Because something about the whole deal made me feel slightly felonious.

I totally get that training for taking over the family business is necessary...but I'm thinking that training on my legs and feet is not okay.  Surely there are mannequins or something...at least until you are of legal voting age.

I did leave with pretty toes. 

But it wasn't the therapy that I needed.  In fact, I left more stressed about the condition of my feet than when I went in.

And from now on, I will make it a point to only go in the mornings...when surely Mr. Fourteen Year Old Foot Fixer is at school.

Oh. Shoot.  It's almost summer.

Time to find a new Gohjus Preddy Boody Nail Suhlon.

UPDATE***  My good buddy Whimzie hooked me up with this link...and I'm so glad that she did!  I totally forgot about this chick.  LOVE HER. 


Dear Abb...uh...Rascal Raiser

Dear Rascal Raiser,

I have noticed that your presence online lately has been as vague as the hair is big in Texas.  Just wondering where you and your Arkansas-sized hair have disappeared to.

Used Six Cans of AquaNet Just This Morning


Dear AquaNet,

Here's hoping that you can see clearly enough through your hairspray sticky contact lenses to read this letter.  Thank you for your concern about my web-related absence.  I assure you that I and the family are all fine.  Just logging more hours at everywhere else but home.

Here are the highlights:

1.  I was bit by a spider.  Again.  I have been hard at work practicing my web-shooting abilities and sewing up my Spidey Suit.

2.  I have been in the gym every.single.dingity.dangity.armadillo.lovin'.day with Jennie the Sceery Trainer.  I have never experienced so much intimidation and trepidation in all my life as weigh-in day.  She hurts me.  And I think she likes it.

3.  I have been providing fence-climbing exhibitions at ballfields across the state.  Some mothers choose to sit calmly in their camp chairs and perfect their pageant claps.  Not me.  I like to cause a scene.  And with ballgames x 3 almost every single night and most weekends, I have lots of scene-makin' time.  Hoopin' and hollerin' ain't got nuthin' on this mama.

4.  I've been celebrating birthdays.  One of the besties, J-Fo, celebrated the 16th anniversary of her 20th birthday this past weekend, and being an excellent example of a great friend, I made sure her big day was done up right.  I'll let her tell you where we ended up because it's her bid'ness to tell, but it might start with a "T" and rhyme with "rattoo."  And I'll deny telling you about it if she asks me.....

5.  Another birthday that I've been celebrating, though did not end up at a "rattoo" parlor, is my darling baby's.  Yep.  My baby turned 6.  SIX!  Big kids are 6.  Kids that can read.  And sass their mamas.  And fix their own sandwiches.  Not my baby.  Not Tate.  Oh, dear me.  My uterus hurts.

6.  I've been surviving tornadoes.  Our area was pelted by the twisty suckers this past weekend, and we spent lots of quality family bonding time hunkered down in the hall huddled around the weather radio.  All that was missing were the smores.  And that whole no-tornado-warning thing.

7.  I thought tornadoes were bad.  What might possibly be worse is Sawyer during a tornado.  My son is now obsessed with the weather and compulsively checks the forecast on my phone every 5 minutes checking for storm percentages.  We're looking into therapy. You think I'm kidding.

8.  And when I'm not hunkering in halls, or taking peeps for "rattoos," or being eaten alive by spiders, or fence-climbing....I've been hanging out in my laundry room.  And trying to find my floors under all the mud that is tracked in with the baseball cleats.  And eating food that resembles tree bark because Jennie the Sceery told me to. 

So, you see, sweet reader, all is well in our corner of the world.  Just busy.  And crazy.  And maddening.

And just so you know...I would give my right earlobe for a hunk of chocolate cake right now. 

Rascal Raiser (Who is Starving)