Day 7: The Straw

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Day 7

 

 

The lady at the Water-Burger didn’t give me a straw this morning.  I’ll admit that once I realized I didn’t have one I cussed her in Spanish and in English.  Unfortunately I don’t think I know cuss words in French or Japanese and cussing in Pig Latin takes all the fun and ferocity out of it.  “Amn-Day Ou-Yay Endeja-Pay!”  just does NOT satisfy the rage.  I don’t even know how to spell some of the words I said, four-lettered or not.

So here I sit, breakfast long gone, sipping on my Dr Pepper in the Styrofoam cup.  Did you know drinking from a straw can almost be soundless?  True, the ice will shift some and when you get to the bottom there is that awful slurping noise.  But generally speaking you can drink from a straw without even lifting the cup and no one is the wiser.  I don’t have a Eaking-Fray straw today.  Every drink I take is accompanied by ice rattling when the cup tilts and a long ssslllluuurrrrppp (cause the ice wins the race every dang time).  Now everyone in my office knows how thirsty I am.  Gracias Upid-Stay Ady-Lay! 

To change the subject some…

I finished the published books in the Outlander series and can’t wait for the next one to come out.  In the meantime I already finished the new Nora Roberts book that came out Tuesday and started another book yesterday that someone else told me about.  It’s a very light, quick read but even so it’s entertaining and since it was free on Kindle I’ll probably buy and read the next in the series since it’s only $3.  I feel like I’ve been inhaling books lately and thought about all the books I’ve read just since October.  I was curious to know how many I’ve read so I looked in my Kindle to see how many I’ve purchased since Oct 1st and guesstimated on the books loaned to me since then.  The Grand Total is… dun dun dun….. 40!  Well, I want to say between 40-45…I can’t remember exactly how many were loaned to me (a bunch!) so I erred on the side of less.  40 to 45 books in 25 weeks.  Huh.  I knew I had been reading a lot but that number was still surprising.

Everyone always asks me how I find time to read with three little ones at home, working full time, renovating and moving and just everything else I’m doing.  I don’t know.  I just do.  Reading on my phone has changed my world forever though.  I still enjoy holding a book in my hands and reading it but if that was the only way I could read I know I wouldn’t have read nearly that much.  For one thing all of my books would either have food, dirt and who knows what else smeared on the pages.  Or pages would be missing or torn or chewed.  Or the books themselves would be missing, lost in the ether with the missing socks.  And no I don’t have dogs…just three small children.

For another reason it would be strange to see a full grown woman walking down the hall (or walking anywhere for that matter) with her nose in a book.  We all look at our phones though.  So I read with literally every spare minute I have.  When I walk anywhere I read a page or two.  When I sit down for lunch, on my pumping breaks, when my computer is logging on.  I only read at home when I’m cooking dinner for the most part, usually while I’m waiting on something to finish boiling or cooking.  The only other time I read at home is in the middle of the night.  If one of the kids, okay Lilly, won’t sleep I’ll sit up and read my book while I rock them.  Or sometimes I’ll read in bed cause Lilly has woken me up and I can’t go back to sleep.  I read at stop lights and stop signs and wave at people that make rude gestures (if I even notice them).

But somehow I’ve managed to find the time to read 40-45 books in the last 25 weeks.  I haven’t sacrificed time with my kids to do it.  I get my work done at work.  I generally keep up with the work at home but that is never ending so I try not to fret too much about that.  I think it just goes to show that if you want to do something, you’ll do it.  And apparently I’ve really wanted to read.

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Well, it’s the end of the challenge, I made it to Day 7!  I’ve posted something every day for 7 days.  I’ll review myself tomorrow and tell you about future challenges.

Thanks for reading!

Day 6: Moments

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Day 6

 

 

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Sunday morning we slept in.  And by “slept in” I mean Ricardo slept and I sat in bed watching tv and tried to keep the kids quiet.  Jimmy wanted to get in bed with us but he can’t sit still or be quiet to save his life so I said no, several times.  It wasn’t necessarily all about him being in bed with us but he’s been having difficulty being obedient lately so I’ve been having to stick to my guns when I tell him to do something or not to do something.  Consistency is the name of the game – and it’s a bloody hard game to play sometimes.  So along with saying no I also told him to go to his room and play, again several times.  Finally I had said it enough times and in a sufficiently dark tone of voice that he gathered his toys and turned to go to his room.  Then he stopped, half turned back to me and with a reproachful look said “Mamma I love you very much” and turned again and went to his room.  That little stinker!  He was deliberately trying to guilt trip me!

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I’ve discovered something new about Lilly in the past week.  She does not like food on her face.  I’ve been feeding her bits of food off my plate now for the past several weeks and she will eat pretty much anything.  But if you don’t get the piece all the way in her mouth she will feel the slightest smear on her lips and use her little fist to push the food in her mouth or try to wipe the smear off.  So girly of her!

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Joey has a girlfriend!  Her name is Eva and I don’t know nearly enough about this girl but that hasn’t stopped Joey from asking for her when she’s not at the sitters and kissing her when she is!  Ricardo saw it with his own eyes yesterday – kissing right on the mouth!  I think Eva is even younger than Joey is so that has got to be the cutest thing ever to see!

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Jimmy likes to make sure Lilly has plenty of toys to play with and will go to war with Joey for taking one away from her.  But then he’ll tell me that Joey is his “brudder” and to be nice to him.  Then again he’ll bring me the wooden spoon because Joey has an “attitude” and needs powpow.  He told Lilly goodnight the other night while I was rocking her.  He sat down beside me and kissed her, rubbed her back and said “goodnight sweetie” and then told me “hers a sweetie”.

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Lilly is learning to give kisses already! They’re big open mouth kisses like Joey’s still are but with a lot more drool than his.  They are the sweetest thing ever.

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I’ve never seen a kid be as much a daddy’s boy as he is a mamma’s boy like Joey.  He’s as equally attached to me as he is to Ricardo.  He’s going through a little phase of jealousy or needing more attention, whichever you want to call it, and rushes to be the first in line for hugs and kisses and then throws a fit if you put him down when he’s not ready.  He’s soooo ornery too.  He got into it with Jimmy one morning this week at the sitters right after Ricardo dropped them off, didn’t like what Jimmy was doing (whatever it was), grabbed his little reclining/rocking chair and threw it a him!  They both have tempers but in two completely different ways.  Jimmy’s  temper has a self-righteous edge to it while Joey’s is just completely volatile.

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I have little mini-shocks multiple times a day with Lilly.  How can a little girl look so much like both of her brothers? And simultaneously look only like herself?  She’ll look up at me with Joey’s eyes and give me such a start and almost immediately change her expression into one that is so classically Jimmy and then smile her Lilly smile and leave me staring at her in shock.  I can’t stop squishing her and kissing her every time I hold her.

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Just a few of the moments in my life that I treasure.

Day 5: An Excerpt

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Day 5

 

Today I’m sharing a random excerpt from a project I’ve been working on for awhile.  I didn’t write it today but I think it counts because I did write it myself.

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He stumbled slightly as his toe caught on a rock.  The gravel was loose here and he shuffled his feet along staring unseeing at the ground.  His mind was a whirlwind of thoughts, bits and pieces bouncing around in random patterns, a cacophony of gibberish that made perfect sense to him.  He waved his arms in grand gestures as he mumbled incoherently; his eyes were unfocused in a glassy glaze.  He laughed raucously and mumbled again.  “48 stones without blue. But how? The grass will never again…no 47 stones without…how will I know? How can I know? She’ll know. No, no no, it is 48 stones.  But the black is so close to the gray and the gray is in the green and I can’t know…I should know.  I should know. I need to know.  48 stones without blue, yes 48.” He threw up a hand in another wild gesture and froze.  He looked at his hand and slowly awareness flooded back into his eyes.  Moving only his head he looked from the right to the left and back again.  Where was he?  What had he been saying?  It seemed so important but he couldn’t remember and why was he here on the side of the road?  How did he get here?  As he looked around again he saw the windmill high on the hill.  How in the hell had he gotten to the Gareth place and where was his car?  He patted his pockets and found his wallet and keys but no phone.  He shook his head to try to clear the last of the haze and started off towards town.  He hoped that he’d find his car and his phone before it became obvious that Holden Meadows was lost.

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Day 4: Entrepreneurs

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Day 4

You learn something new everyday.  Today I learned how to spell “Entrepreneur”.  I wonder how many people say “entrePENeur”?    It’s a French word.  FRENCH.  I speak FRENCH.  Seriously, how many words do you use that are from a different language and you never knew because you learned it as a kid and assumed it was English (or whatever your first language was).  I also speak SPANISH and JAPANESE and PIG LATIN and another form we invented as children and so creatively named CHINESE PIG LATIN. Hong E Long Long O!  5 points if you can translate that – into any real language. (I also should win a gold medal for the mean Chinese Cartwheel I can do)

How many people say boocoo?  Tell me, I wanna know.  Never heard of it?  I’ll use it in a sentence.  “He’s a real sonnofabeach but he’s got boocoo money”  Oh yeah, you say that, you’ve just never seen it written down!  Huh, so that’s how it’s spelled.  Hmph!  NOT! (as my Grandpa says)  BEAUfreakingCOUP is how it’s spelled!  BEAUCOUP.  FRENCH again!  I thought only people that lived in the boondocks said “boocoo” and that it was an illiterate’s word, apparently it’s totally European and swanky.  And I’ve been using since I was in diapers.

But back to EntrePRENeur.   Every empty building I see stirs my entrepreneurial juices and I imagine all sorts of profitable and wildly successful ventures I could start in said building.  There was that Music Store/Café Daniel and I were going to start.  That warehouse that would be a perfectly grungy venue for heavy metal concerts.  That Music Store/Coffee shop which is totally different from the Music Store/Café. That bar with the pool tables and well dressed waitresses, that Mexican restaurant that would be at once inexpensive and Elegant.  Multiple Bed and Breakfasts. Hotels. Drive through Redboxes. Drive through everything. An online handcrafted furniture shop. A mechanic’s garage. A birth center. The list goes on and on.  I do intend to have a business one day but I haven’t quite made up my mind which business it ought to be.

Adelina is the result of another entrepreneur putting it all on the line for the sake of her dream.  Mahli, my cousin!, gathered her courage and all of her available resources and made something happen!  So thrilling to see someone risk everything to live their passion. Makes me want to seize the bull by the horns, throw him over my back and then do whatever you’re supposed to do with the bull after you seize him by the horns.

Mahli makes her Lathers by hand with all natural ingredients and knowing her the way I do I know they’re not only beautifully named and artistically wrapped but are truly exceptional.  I was excited to find out that I have the distinction of being her very first customer!  If you have any entrepreneur in you at all you should visit her site and see what she’s created from her dream.

One day I’ll make up my mind and put everything on the line too. Today I’m living vicariously through Mahli and wishing her all the best and wild success at Adelina

Day 3: Life

Day 3

As most of you know we don’t have a kitchen sink…yet. There are a lot of uses the kitchen sink has that you take for granted until you don’t have one. One of the things you use it for is food disposal when you do your bi-annual refrigerator clean-out. Without the sink you find other ways to accomplish these tasks.

I’ve been washing dishes in the bathtub, draining pasta in the bathroom sink and flushing some of the smaller amounts of leftovers that have gone bad in the toilet. This is how I discovered yesterday that the toilet has a leak.

The milk had gone bad so I dumped it in the toilet. When I flushed it I saw a gush of white water on the floor! Without that milk it probably would have taken a lot longer to figure it out because of where the leak was. So we bought a new toilet and installed it this morning. Yea!

Of course immediately after taking the old toilet out I had to go. I managed to wait until Mercedes woke up and we made it to the convenience store before things got dire.

The new toilet flushes so fast, looks so bright and clean that I almost don’t want anyone to use it. But Jimmy was the first one to break it in although he said he was scared of it at first.

It was a long day even though I’m not sure what exactly we did with the time. I’m ready to hit the sack and wish tomorrow wasn’t Monday!

Day 2: Fresh

Day 2

This challenge is challenging! Day 2 and I’m already questioning whether I have enough fresh topics to talk about every day. That’s just my phone talking though. It’s a good thing there’s no such thing as technology abuse or neglect or laws protecting electronic devices. If there were I’d be a fugitive based solely on the condition of my phone!

I’ve had this phone a week longer than I’ve had Lilly and I dare say if it were sentient it would be cowering in fear at the sight of me. The one thing I can say in my defense is that most of the abuse is unintentional (minus the verbal abuse..that is most definitely intentional).

Last Fall I took the Otter case off of the phone because I liked the sleek feel of the phone in my hand. One morning I dropped it face down under the train! I thought it was a goner but it wasn’t on the track itself. So with a bit of trepidation I climbed down and rescued it seconds before the next train came by. The screen was horribly cracked and I felt terrible for marring it’s beauty. It didn’t seem to effect how it worked though. Since then I’ve dropped it many more times sans case. Its uglier than sin now.

Last Sunday I woke up early with a great need to relieve my bladder. My phone willingly accompanied me to provide light so I didn’t have to turn the lights on and risk waking up the kids. From the phone’s point of view the next thing that happened probably felt deliberate. I’ve never taught it to swim so it probably thought I was trying to drown it in the toilet full of pee-water. In reality I was just as horrified as the phone was. With a split second thought for the sanitary conditions I grabbed it and did everything short of CPR to resuscitate it.

I was sure that it wasn’t coming back from that but late in the day it finally came back on. The camera still refuses to work but everything else is functioning.

Can you imagine if that had been Lilly instead of the phone in those situations though?? How quickly I would have been arrested? It makes me wonder about the future. Will we see AI in our lifetime? If we do will they come up with protection laws for technology? Will I be accused of abandonment or neglect if I leave my tablet somewhere. Or don’t use it for a few weeks or :gasp: let the battery run out? It sounds ridiculous but somehow it seems all too possible.

I don’t enjoy using my phone to write. I feel like it kind of inhibits the creativity. But that’s what I’m using to post today and tomorrow. So I just pinched it…cause I can.

Day 1: The Ode

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Day 1

Day 1!  It’s here!  I decided yesterday to challenge myself and am beginning today. I didn’t give myself time to think about it, decide on themes to write about, make an outline, didn’t even really think about what I want the finished challenge to look like.  I still don’t really even have a fully formed notion of the end result.  Every days post will either be “Same stuff, different day” or will be as much a surprise to you as it will be to me.

I’ve always wanted to write an ode though.  Haven’t you?  You don’t even have to know what the word means for it to sound important and romantic.  An Ode to Love  or The Warrior’s Ode.  Just the made-up titles prime your emotions for the awesomeness held within.  Someone should definitely write those.  I decided last night that I’d write an ode for Day 1 of my challenge.  Two birds, one stone.  The only problem was I didn’t know exactly what an ode was.  So I Googled it this morning and discovered that it’s  “a poem in which a person expresses a strong feeling of love or respect for someone or something”.  Oh.  I mean, just from the feelings alone that the word “Ode” elicits I could have guessed it meant something like that but….a poem??  :sigh: As the daughter of not one but two poets you’d think an ode would be child’s play for me.  Alas, it is not.  Not, I say! :shakes fist at the sky:

But this is a writing challenge so I’ll soldier on.  Don’t ever expect to read a haiku from me though.  I understand what an ode requires but I don’t understand haiku in the slightest.  Without further ado…

The Mother’s Ode of Loss

O, (all poems start with O, especially odes)

O, to remember what was
And to know what is now.
O, the loss, the loss.
Now I dare not bow.
 
So full, so round,
The past holds me captive.
My head hangs low
As the memories become combative.
 
O, to remember what was
And to know what is to come.
O, the gain, the gain.
The blow strikes me numb.
 
Though a mother of three, three and one.
Avert thine eyes lest you behold –
the number matters not –
this portion so uncontrolled.
 
O, to remember what was
And to know what will never be.
O, the marks, the marks.
Collagen is my plea.
 
So lofty, so pert are words of late.
The temptation to parse,
To relive, to cry and howl,
O! O! to mourn the great loss of my arse.

Seven Days: A Challenge

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7 Days: A Challenge

7 Days: A Challenge

I’ve decided to challenge myself to a post a day for 7 days.  Day 1 starts tomorrow.

The challenge I’ve made for myself doesn’t include blogging about anything in particular so the subject of each post can be as random as my brain.  It can even be a hodge podge of subjects.  What they can’t be though are puny, photo heavy, one liner posts.  The point of the challenge is to amp up my writing game and to work my creative muscle…if I even have one.

Practice makes perfect write (pun intended)? I’ve heard and read that the more you write the better you get so I’m going to test it for myself.  I originally thought about challenging myself to a 30 day challenge but I thought I’d start small and work my way up. I’d love, at some point, to write a post a day every day of the year.  A well written, entertaining post.  A post you wouldn’t want to miss.  That’s the goal.

While this challenge is ultimately for my own benefit I’d love to hear encouraging feedback in the comments section.

See you tomorrow!

Cast in Iron

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The belly of my middle child is cast in iron.  Not only does nothing seem to inflame his gastrointestinal system but his sense of what’s okay to eat is wide open and includes pretty much anything that will fit into his mouth.

Over the weekend Ricardo found a cup of tortilla soup in the back of the Suburban that Mercedes had left in there from VALENTINE’S DAY!  We’d already locked the house so he tossed it in the yard to pick up when we got back.  Between hauling in kids and all of the things we brought home with us the cup of soup stayed in the yard.  Joey discovered it on Sunday and in turn Ricardo discovered Joey eating out of it.  :gag: We were sure he’d end up sick later, after all who knows whats growing in month old tortilla soup, but nothing!

Last night I was assisting Ricardo install the new door for our bedroom while the kids were watching cartoons on our bed.  I’d already fed them dinner and they’d washed it down with chocolate milk.  So they were hyper and bouncing all over the bed.  Joey was having a meltdown every time Ricardo used the drill (What is Up With THAT Joey?? Stop it already!).  I was handing Ricardo shims and making silly faces and noises at Joey trying to distract him from the noises.  It kind of worked…for a minute.  We were almost done with the door but were at a critical point that required all of our attention.  The guilty party (I won’t name names. It could be possible self preservation. Or maybe not.  You’ll never know.) happened to see Joey holding something small.  Knowing that everything goes in his mouth we always have to investigate to make sure it won’t kill him.  Ehh, it was just the piece of plastic you tear off the new wipes to open it.  It had been laying on the dresser at the end of the bed.  No biggie.  Except!  Except the GP knew that it had been used to wrap a booger!  And there was noooooo sign of said booger. :threw up a little in my mouth: Since I’ve seen Joey put his fingers in his mouth directly after being in his nose (not sure if anything was transferred or not) I didn’t figure he saw much of a difference in his own boogers or someone elses. :double gag: That booger could be anywhere but the most likely possibility is that he had an after dinner snack.  While that probably won’t make him sick it for sure made US sick just thinking about it.  It actually grosses me out more than that time Jimmy put the thermometer in his mouth after I had used it to check Joey’s temp…rectally. :shudders: 

At least we know he won’t be a picky eater.

Potty, Potty, Potty!

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The whole family is all about the potty these days.  Ricardo and I are more into the “potty” as a room that needs to be finished and decorated.  Jimmy on the other hand is almost officially through potty training!!  Woot Woot!

I’m so proud of him and thankful for his amazing sitter.  Without her I’d probably still be changing his diapers and talking about the need to potty train him.  He still wears a diaper to bed and mostly wakes up dry but it’s all underwear all day every day.

All grown up and potty trained!

All grown up and potty trained!

Grannie bought him a potty seat to sit on the regular toilet seat so he can be comfortable and not fall in and I think that did the trick.  The only thing is he can’t get up on it by himself so going to the potty is most definitely a two person job.  I think once we’ve settled in to where going to the potty is just second nature we’ll start working on using the regular toilet seat and maybe get a stool in the bathroom.

I had bought him some training pants and he had a few pairs of hand me down underwear but now that he’s doing so good I bought him his first boxer briefs and O.M.G. are they the cutest things!  I think his dad would be scandalized if I were to post pictures (which I don’t have in any event) but take my word for it, it’s adorable!

I have been having a great mixture of anxiety and excitement decorating our guest bathroom.  Which is also the only functioning bathroom at this point.  The paint color is a little darker than we had envisioned and I changed my mind on the colors I wanted for accents so it’s been slow going getting it all together.  But it’s coming along and it’s exciting how it’s shaping up.  I still need to do a little more shopping, I’m not 100% convinced about the wall hanging I put up and there is some trim that still needs to be installed but overall it’s looking great!

Before

Before

After

After

New pulls and knobs

New pulls and knobs

Got the towel rod and TP holder put up.

Got the towel rod and TP holder put up.

I think once this room is done it will be the first room completely done in the house…just six years in the making, no big deal!

And not to leave the other two out here are a couple of pictures of Joey and Lilly over the weekend.

Lilly in her outfit from Hawaii.

Lilly in her outfit from Hawaii.

Typical Joey...I only manage to capture the back of him.

Typical Joey…I only manage to capture the back of him.

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I found a couple of the original Before pictures of the Guest Bathroom so I thought I’d add them here.

Looking through the bathroom wall into the living room.

Looking through the bathroom wall into the living room.

Looking into the bathroom from the living room.

Looking into the bathroom from the living room.

What a difference!