Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wordless Wednesdays - Lookout, LGPA, here I come!

*Please note that her MOMMY (not her Daddy who is an amazing golfer) shot 4 - that's right, FOUR - holes in one during this round of putt-putt.*
Love & Shipoopies,

Monday, July 26, 2010

This Week I Will Be Mostly...

...getting up earlier than I want.
...eating cabbage soup (blech!).
...cherishing the one cup of yummy iced-coffee goodness I'm allowing myself each day.
...reading more of _The Things They Carried_.
...listening to my sweet baby sing every tune she hears (or her version of it anyway).
(Can you tell we've entered our crazy-busy season at work?)

What will YOU be doing this week?

Love & Shipoopies,

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Well, that's a horse of a different color!

"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"Wha doin', Mommy?"

"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"Wha doin', Mommy?"
I don't know about YOU, but in MY world, this "conversation" (and others in a similar pattern) make up a VERY large portion of my daily words. Sometimes it's just the one time, truly trying to get an answer to the question. Sometimes it goes more like this:
"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"I'm fixing your milk, honey."
"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"I'm fixing your milk, honey."
"Wha doin', Mommy?"
"Same thing I was doing half a second ago, Tucker, Okay?"
"Otay. Wha doin', Mommy?"
Even when it's said in the sweetest little baby voice that can melt my heart at any given second, this routine can get OLD.
That is until I read an article the other day about repetitive questioning and why toddlers do it.
It gave three reasons. One is language development - that your child is still trying to master the words in your answer, so she wants to hear them over and over again. Another is concept understanding - that your child doesn't quite understand what you're saying so she wants to hear it repeated to try and better grasp your meaning.
But the third reason...
Well, THAT'S a horse of a different color!
The third reason toddlers ask repetitive questions, according to this article, is for reassurance. Basically, repetition means constance, dependability, assurance, and security to a toddler. They ask the same question and want the same answer over and over because that helps them know that SOME things in this ever-changing world (like you, your love, and the safety you provide) are constant.
So what she's really saying is,
"Do you still love me, Mommy?"
"Are you still there?"
"Am I still safe?"
"Are you still protecting me?"
"Nothing's going to hurt me, right?"
"You're not going to forget me, are you?"
"You won't stop loving me, right?"
That's a toddler of a different color, for sure.
Love & Shipoopies,

Monday, July 19, 2010

Free 4 All Winner

Yesterday was the last day of my brother's visit and, let's just say it was a doozie! We had a blast at a Braves game, but the day ended with 1 toddler with a 103+ fever, the other toddler falling down the stairs (with, thankfully, only a goose-egg), the 3 visitors sitting still on the interstate for 2 hours waiting on a 15 car wreck to be cleared, and our house alarm going off in the middle of the night, taking us from sleep to panick in about half a second. WOW! We went out with a BANG (or a siren, to be more accurate).

Needless to say, wasn't top of mind for me last night. :) But I did get around to it today!

Drumroll, please...

19 - Carrie!

Email me with your preferences, and if you want to wait a bit to find out about that new bun in your oven, that's just FINE with me. :)

Love & Shipoopies,

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Blessing and a Free 4 All

This weekend (a nice, long weekend), my big brother and his wife and daughter have come for an Atlanta-cation. :) We have some loose plans of doing some classic Atlanta things, but our most important plan is to spend some time together and watch the girls play together. They got in LATE Wednesday night (post midnight), so we let today be a lazy day. We did a little pool time and a lot of playing around the house. What a blessing to spend the day FULL of these two smiles and giggle-boxes!

It's the third Friday of the month.
That means it's my turn to host FREE 4 All Fridays!
Because everybody likes free stuff, right!?!
I'll be honest with you. This week, I had a plan for the giveaway and then that plan fell through. I didn't realize it wasn't going to work out as I planned until about 2 hours ago. Hmmm. What to do? What to do?
I literally walked around my house looking for things I have made (and thus could re-create for someone else). Then I remembered this cute little name I made for Tucker's room:

This is HER name and in colors to match HER decor, but if you win, I will make YOUR name (first or last) to match the decor of any picture you email me. (Your bedspread, couch, wallpaper, favorite decorative pillow?) I'll put the ribbons on and it'll be ready for you to hang. (Hooks and/or hanging apparatus not included. tee-hee) (I can also get less whimsical letters if you prefer.)
Here's how to win:
*Leave me a comment telling me what name you'd want and what room you'd put it in.
*Follow me and leave me a comment saying you do.
*Blog about this giveaway and leave me a comment with a link to your blog post.
*Visit and comment Mimi @ He & Me + 3, then leave me a comment letting me know you did.
*Just for fun, tell me what your favorite TV show is and why.
(Each entry must be a separate comment to count as an entry.)
That's FIVE chances to win!

Love & Shipoopies,

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


If you EVER used that phrase, then you MUST watch the show!!!

It's life-altering.

(Ok, that might be a touch - just a touch - of hyperbole.)

But seriously, it's amazingly hysterical!

In fact, I had planned on writing an in-depth post about _Of Mice And Men_ (my first "I love it!" classic of the summer) and then I watched the season premier of "Psych" and jotted down so many of my favorite quotes, I decided I'd share some of the delight with you! (Aren't you THRILLED?!?)

I mean, WHO needs serious, classic literature when you have ridiculously stupid, smart-tail tv comedy, right?!?

Please note that all of these were said in the midst of serious conversations. Smart-tail at its finest! :)

*(Upon Shawn introducing Gus as Mr. Heimer-Schmidt, John Jacob Jingly) "You're saying his name is John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt?"

"Yes. We used to share the name. I changed mine... because of all the people shouting... when I went out."

*"You know how mcuh I love Yao Mint. That's got to count for something."

*"I sued a hot dot cart and got everything but the wheels and buns...And I won them two months later in civil court."

Seriously. Watch it.

Love & Shipoopies,

Wordless Wednesdays - Tink

Love & Shipoopies,

Monday, July 12, 2010

Terrible TWOs-days

I am a mom.

Of a 2 year old.

You probably know this.

All in all (as I tell almost anyone who asks), we are insanely, unbelievably, "wonder what kind of blood-payment is going to be expected from us in the future for this wonderful gift" kind of blessed with our 2 year old.

Minus the occassional exception, she sleeps well, eats well, goes along with most anything (or anyone) we throw at her, and behaves pretty well...

...for a two year old, that is.

And she's funny. Not comedy club funny, but seriously two-year-old-hysterical! Her vocabulary is (and I realize this will sound like bragging, but I swear you can ask people that aren't her parents OR grandparents and they will agree with this statement) pretty friggin' enormous... maybe even for a 4 or 5 year old. She's pretty easy to understand and will at least TRY to repeat anything anyone says. (Cue the "watch what you say" warning looks and music here.)

Just this week, she has begun walking up to anyone and everyone saying, "Hewooooo. How yoooooooooy day? I fIIIIIIIIIne day."

Seriously. Hysterical.

And polite. I swear, my 2 year old is pretty stinkin' polite! She knows "please" and "thank you" (and sometimes even "thank you bear much") and when to use each. She sometimes has to be prompted on the "please" but never more than once. And her gratitude is so genuine. When I fill her juice cup and hand it to her or locate the lost toy of the moment, I hear "Oooooooh, THANK you, Mommy!" (With a wonder that says, "Dear lady, I can not believe you would possibly be so kind as to spend your time helping me with this amazingly miraculous favor. I could never possibly thank you enough to repay your kindness.")

But here's the thing. She's 2. TWO, I say.

You know there's that name they have for two year olds. (And if even one of you says to me, "Just wait. Three's WAY worse than two," I will e-mail you, ask for your address, buy a plane ticket, fly there, rent a car, drive to your house/apartment/mansion and SMACK YOU! I hate when people tell you that you have a bus THREE TIMES the size of the one that just ran over you on its way, as some sort of consolation. Thankyouverymuch.)

Here's where an especially verbal two year old gets you (or herself) into trouble.

A two year old (who loves to parrot and be like Mommy and Daddy) doesn't have the rationale to understand that she can't say everything to Mommy and Daddy that Mommy and Daddy can say to HER. Case in point:

Me: "Tucker, come here, please."

Tucker (one finger wagging in my direction) : "No, MA'AM, Mommy. No, No, Ma'am!"

(The first time she got onto my husband saying, "No, Ma'am," I thought his head might actually just pop right off. )

It seems SO VERY smart-tail-ish. Of course, it's not. How is she to know that she can't get onto us the same way we get onto her? (Although I promise my finger NEVER wags. Someone else showed her that delight.)

I'm guessing "pecking order" isn't important enough to be in the "automatic" list when God creates babies if "holding it" and "pee-peeing in the potty" aren't.

Just sayin'.

Of course, "No, Ma'am, Mommy" doesn't warrant a terrible twos kind of post. I realize that in all two-year-old behavior, this is pretty minor -- almost too miniscule to mention (if it weren't for the humerous picture of my child chastizing me with her finger a-waggin').

But this weekend, a dear friend and the future Mr. dear friend came through our territory. Dear friend hadn't seen my sweet child since she was about 9 months old. Dear friend (and after getting to know him, the future Mr. dear friend) is one of the sweetest, most polite, thoughtful, wonderful people I have ever met.

Seriously. She should have tiny cartoon blue birds circling her singing happy songs. (And around her, it wouldn't be the tiniest bit obnoxious.)

I was so excited for her to see how sweet and polite and wonderful and adorable my child is. Instead, this is how conversations went:

"I have that!" (For those of you who don't speak 2-year-old, this means "Give me that.")

"What do you say, Tucker?"

"I HAAAAAVE that."

"Tucker, what's the nice way to ask?"

"I HAAAAAAAAAAVE that! (with some added fake sobbing)"

"What is the magic word?"

*Blank stare, fake tears*

Seriously? My child, who gets comments every single place we go because she says please and thank you so often? I heard ONE "please" the entire 24 hours they were here.

Thank you, Two. I appreciate your visit at such an opportune time.


Thank you BEAR much.

Love & Shipoopies,

Monday Memories

"Come Monday, it'll be alright. Come Monday, I'll be holding you tight!"

"I like mine with lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57 and french fried potatoes, big kosher pickle and a cold draft beer!"

"Love in the library, quiet and cool. Love in the library, there are no rules. Surrounded by stories surreal and sublime, I fell in love in the library once upon a time."

"These changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes,Nothing remains quite the same.Through all of the islands and all of the highlands,If we couldn’t laugh we would all go insane."

Is anyone else out there a closeted (or not so much) Parrothead? I don't know if I OFFICALLY count, but I'm a wannabe at the very least.

I love me some Buffett!!

As I watched part of the televised concert in Gulf Shores last night (which, best I could tell, was pretty close to my Aunt Misti and Uncle Tony's place), I couldn't help but drift back to my first encouter with Mr. Buffett.

I was young... probably elementary school age of some variety. My dad's baby sister lived in Mobile (as did his older brother) and when we would go there to spend some time with them, it sometimes included a trip with Aunt Bri to P'Cola beach. (As an adult, I know that Gulf Shores is CLEARLY closer, so not sure why we drove that far, but since she lives right by P'Cola beach now, I guess she always had some fondness for it.)

She drove an old Celica, if memory serves correctly. Back then, listening to your favorite tunes involved a tape deck (with no playlists or skipping easily from one song to the next). I don't remember all of the details, but I do remember driving with the windows down and the ocean coming into view while Jimmy was playing.

The trips to the beach were usually a mix of fun and not so much. (I have an older brother who went along and we weren't always the best mix of personalities. tee-hee.) I remember some swimming, some fighting, and some jellyfish (though not sure they were all on the same trip). I remember my brother walking me into the ocean on a float because I was too scared to walk in on my own. (This was a rare moment of sweetness between the two of us that always stuck with me.)

But mostly, I remember deciding immediately that I needed a copy of that Jimmy Buffett tape.

I still don't know all the words to all of his songs and I've never seen him live (a real shame, I hear), but I do love his music. The songs I know are a part of my soul (some for the humor, some for the absurdity, some for the beat, and some because they are truly touching).

Do any of you have an album (or song or singer) that takes you back to a specific memory or time in your life? I'd love to hear. :)

Love & Shipoopies,

Friday, July 09, 2010

Fabulous, Fun, (growing-up) Fridays!!

I'm a little late getting up my post today, but there's a REASON!!!

I didn't want to post until I had taken pictures at a very special occassion over a long lunch-break today.

Today, my sweet little curly-headed sweety-pie got her very first haircut! (Well, it was technically a trim. No shaping was needed and we certainly didn't want to chop off all those beautiful curls!)

*She wasn't so sure about what was happening at first. The thought of sitting in the special booster seat for kids made her lose it, so Daddy's lap it was.*

At the end, she got to pick a lollipop (which she's never had, thus has no idea what that means, but we were excited, so she was excited). The rest of the day she has been telling us about how "Bitty (Brittany) dave haircut and Daddy's yap (lap) and inna chair anna haircut." :)
Of course, looking at it, you can't see any difference at all. (You can officially stop fretting, grandparents.)
Oh, and thank GOODNESS I chatted with my dear friend, Jennifer @ She Endeavors who reminded me to get a clipping of her first haircut for her baby book! I had TOTALLY forgotten that mommy responsibility! :)
I hope you each encounter something new and magical in YOUR life this Friday!
Love & Shipoopies,

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Taking My Own Advice

It's amazingly easy to dish out advice.

I don't even mean in the "sticking your nose where it doesn't belong" way (although that's even easier if you let yourself go there).

I just mean when you see someone going through something you have experience with, it's easy (at least as long as this someone isn't a complete stranger - though even THAT's easy for some people - especially if she's a pregnant lady or new mom) to offer some hard-earned advice.

"Nap when the baby naps. Sleep is more important than a clean kitchen and folded laundry."

"Go to the grocery store on a weekday morning. It's less crowded, and thus, quicker and less irritating."

"Watch 'Big Bang Theory'! It's HILARIOUS!!!"

We all have "tips" we've picked up as we've struggled through life. It's nice to share a truly helpful tip to welcoming ears and feel you've helped someone out.

*In a seemingly unrelated story*
I used to be an English teacher (in what somedays feels like another lifetime). My favorite part of teaching English (other than helping people understand grammar) was helping a student who "hates reading" find something to read that he/she enjoyed. My theory was (and advice has always been) that if you "hate to read", you simply haven't found the right book. I said it (and meant it and proved it) many, many, many times over. I truly think that everyone would enjoy reading SOMETHING if they would just try enough stuff to find the right thing.

*I swear, it seems like I'm a jumping bean today, but it all really is related.*
So this summer, I decided to try reading some of the classics that "everyone has read" that somehow in all my education, I missed. I determined that for everyone of my fabulous mystery novels that I love, I would read one classic that I had somehow missed.

I started with _Catcher in the Rye_. It was a pretty quick, easy read. And can I just say...



I kept thinking, "This is awful, and weird, and pointless. But everyone loves it and it's a classic, so if I keep reading, it'll get better or I'll find the point or thing that everyone loves eventually."

Not so much.

Read another murder mystery and then, based on a katrillion recommendations, I picked _Catch 22_. It's, apparently hilarious and clever.

I've been reading it for almost a month and a half now. I'm on page 27. I've read 3 other books while avoiding this one. I just can NOT get into it.

But I felt this NEED burning within me to continue forcing myself to read it - to finish it even though I was forcing myself - ME, the person who reads 1-3 books a WEEK. I'm the girl who has to force myself to put DOWN a book long enough to eat dinner or spend a little time with my family. But somehow I kept thinking, "It's a classic. You HAVE to finish it. Maybe eventually this narrator's voice will begin to speak to you instead of irritating you."

However, last night, I was walking around Target and saw a rack of "Classic Books" and saw quite a few books that looked infinitely more appealing to me. And I FINALLY decided to follow my own advice.

Not every book is for every person. If you hate it, put it down and pick another. There are too many books that you will LOVE hanging around out there waiting to be read to waste time forcing yourself to read something you're not into!!!

So last night before bed, I had a conversation with _Catch 22_. I explained that, although I'm sure it's an amazing book, and a nearly infinite number of people love it, it was just NOT.MY.BAG, so I was moving on. "It's not you. It's me, or maybe the combination of the two of us."

And I started _Of Mice and Men_.

Loving it.

Love & Shipoopies,

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Wordless Wednesdays - "Up in da Skyyyyyyyyy!"

*Let's be honest - my Wordless Wednesdays are so rarely without words*
Our city's fireworks are shot from a weird spot - not in a local park where there's huge grassy knolls upon which to place your blanket. They're shot in an empty parking lot. Behind Target. With no parks anywhere near. So, as we discovered, everyone places their blankets on the small sections of grass between the businesses and the major highway nearest the fireworks.
These were T's first fireworks. The sound scared her a bit, but after explaining to her that, like thunder, fireworks don't hurt you, she enjoyed watching them and frequently pointed to the sky directly above her (nowhere near where the fireworks were) saying "Fie-wuks up in da skyyyyyy. Fie-wuks don hurtchooooo!"
And THIS picture is just for Mimi who self-proclaimedly "runs on Dunkin". Our bit of grass was right outside the Dunkin Donuts/Baskin Robbins (which made for some good fireworks snacks)!

Love & Shipoopies,

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens (Meme Monday)

I LOVE holiday weekends! I mean, really! I LURVE them!

What's not to like? Time off work, get togethers, sunshine, good food, laughter, no work, oh, and did I mention the time off work?!?

The joy brought to me by this holiday weekend got me to counting my blessings and joys, which got me thinking of some of my favorite things.

Now, I don't mean things like my daughter, husband, and family because DUR! Of COURSE they're top of my list!

I got to thinking about my favorite indulgences - the things I do to spoil myself, reward myself, console myself.

And THAT got me curious as to what YOUR favorite indulgences are!

If I share, will you?

Pretty please....?

Here goes:
*Blended Coke floats from Sonic (Seriously, try one. It'll change your life!)

*Coke (more specifically, Coke that's been in the back of the fridge and is really cold, poured into a cup without ice and finished before that frigid temp wears off)

*Massages (I am not able to get them often, but if I could afford to get one a week, I would.)

*Murder mystery books (I usually read 1 or 2 a week - it's sad, really.)

*Sunday afternoon naps

*Great shoes (this doesn't necessarily mean expensive - just the kind that make you feel beautiful/sexy/cute when you wear them)

*A fabulous playlist (I made one for T's birthday party - which, incidentally, almost no on heard over all the kids - that all had either "Summer" or "Sun" mentioned in the chorus or title. It's awesome and I've rocked out to it a few times since.)

*Homemade iced coffees - they're healthier than store-bought ones (and WAY lower points in my Weight Watchers), cheaper, and SO MUCH BETTER!!!

*An interuption-free day spent crafting/sewing/scrapbooking/creating (Ok, let's be honest, this is a pipe-dream - hasn't happened in AGES, but...)

What are some of YOUR favorite things? ('Cause I'm guessing it's not Schnitzel with noodles.)

Love & Shipoopies,

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Thursday Thrills

(Ok, I realize that's a cheesetastic STRETCH of a title, but...)

My dear bloggy friend, Mimi, introduced me to The Texas Darlings' Flip-Flop swap! How fun is THAT?!? You send in your info, get partnered with another blogger, and then send each other a pair of flip-flops and some other fun goodies! What's not to like?!? Cute flips AND a new bloggy friend!!!

I got partnered with Connie @ The Young and the Relentless. (Ummm, HOW CUTE are her kiddos?!?) How excited was I when I received THESE little bits of sunshine for my tootsies?!?

And along with those cute flips, came this other fun stuff!!!

Ok, first of all, I would buy that magazine JUST for the happiness that is its cover!!! The combination of colors just makes me smile! (Then add that it's got some pretty great articles in it, and you've got a real winner!) The other two items are notepads (one with coordinating page makers)!!! Hey, Connie, I don't know if you read my mind or what, but I'm a cute-little-notebook-addict!!! :)

This was WAY fun! I will DEFINITELY participate next year, and am thinking about starting my OWN swap! :)
Stay tuned...

Love & Shipoopies,