Is there such a thing as "staring too early"?

hhhmmmmmm... Does he really need a batting helmet already, Mike?

#7 on the list - check!

I said that I needed to tell you all about our new-to-us piano. Well, here it is - ta-da! Don't you just love it?

This is my Grammy's piano. She recently moved out of her house and was generous enough to pass it on to us! I can't wait to get it all tuned up and play it! And I really can't wait until William is old enough to take piano lessons!
I have some beautiful old, faded sheet music that I bought at an antique store. I am going to get them framed and hang on the wall above the piano. And a new lamp is definitely in order!

Please excuse all the kiddo's toys in the picture. Right beyond the scope of the camera lens is about eight times as much. Out of control! This poor room in our house has no label. It is not our main living room/den. It is DEFINITELY not a sitting room. It can't be the front room because it is at the back of the house, just off the kitchen. And I don't want it to be just a play room. Any ideas for a room name? Creativity is encouraged!



Please click HERE and read this!

wine and cheese

My "Will-has-gone-to-bed,time-for-an-adult-snack" choice tonight was a lovely glass of Chardonay (from Argentina, no less) and... wait for it... Goldfish crackers!!! Toddler food rocks! Sheriously, you're supposed to eat cheese with wine, right?

and, for anyone that is keeping track, I published my to-do list for this past Monday. As of this evening (Wednesday - 3 whole days later), I still have not finished it. And not just the little stuff either. #s 6, 7, and 8 are patiently waiting my attention. In my defense, however, today was a little dramatic (more on that later). Tomorrow, laundry, I promise!



yeah, I am a list maker. it makes me feel better.
anyhoo, here is tomorrow's list. (in sequential order)
(a simple reminder, I am technically still on my summer vacation - so don't get all in a tizzy if my list doesn't seem that ambitious)

1. find something for Will to eat for breakfast. sheriously, after vacation, our kitchen is severely lacking.
2. go to grocery store and get supplies to remedy #1.
3. play with Will - a lot! I really missed him and besides, length of nap time is directly proportional to level of exhaustion.
4. lunch (hopefully a more successful venture than #1, because of #2)
5. nap (hopefully just Will)
6. start on mountain of laundry - I am Sir Edmund Hillary and it is my Everest
7. write about my pretty new-to-me piano (ooooooo, it really is sooooo pretty)
8. clean house - sheriously? we'll see how that goes.....
9. depending on length of #5, watch Ellen AND Oprah
10. some sort of indoor adventure for Will involving lots of air-conditioning (library, maybe?)
11. make dinner (with newly acquired supplies from #2)

and yes, as soon as I post this, I am printing it off so it can sit on my kitchen cabinet and be checked off tomorrow

"back to life, back to reality!"

isn't that a line from some 80's song? Seriously, (or shall I say, sheriously) if you know what song it is let me know because that stupid line has been running through my head all day long.
vacation is over.

not that I'm completely sad. We picked up William from Mike's mom's house this morning and I cried like a baby when I picked him up. I missed that little boy sooooo much, my heart hurt just seeing him again!
reality set in when we had to pack up all his stuff (and the two crazy dogs) and go back to the house. let the madness begin!

well actually, it began last night when we got home from the airport. hhmmmm. long flight. late night. no food in the house. quite crabby. stuffy house because the A/C had been off while we were gone. the situation totally called for Taco Bueno. plan is : we go get our tex-mex fix in the A/C at Bueno then come home to a cooled-off house and GO TO BED!

wrong. first dose of reality. I yelled at some lady who was driving in front of us. this from the girl who was so relaxed for 4 days she barely stood up. (and I wasn't even driving - Mike was!). next. we get to the parking lot of Bueno (shared with a shopping center) and there is a classic car mini-convention for over-50s with too much time/money on their hands happening right there in the parking lot. the convnention atendees have decided to fill their late night cravings by walking through the drive-thru. no biggie because we are going to eat inside. park. go to door. locked. yes. it is 10:03 and Taco Bueno indoor dining closed at 10:00 (no wonder the crazies were walking through the drive-thru). Plan B. get in line at the drive-thru behind a couple, not in their snazy sportscar, but in their snazy sneakers! I sooooo badly wanted to hnk. but Mike wouldn't let me.

we successfully order/receive food/eat at home and I am feeling much better. not for too long. go to restroom to put away toiletries from trip. scale is beckoning me in the same way that Sally teased Charlie Brown with the football. I fall for it. it is not pretty. In the course of 6 days, I have gained AT LEAST 5 pounds. I say at least because I am a morning weigher. and we ALL know that for some miraculous reason we all weigh less in the morning. through God's grace, the batteries were dead in our scale when I went to try it this morning and I have yet to cry about the situation since I still can't be sure of exactly how much weight I gained. I don't think I am going to replace the batteries for a few days. I CANNOT handle the truth (did anyone else just get a vision of Tom Cruise from that phrase?!)

needless to day, I am so completely glad we went on vacation. Mike and I don't usually splurge on big stuff like that, but it was definitely worth it. I'll catch you all up on more details in the future, but I leave you with a few of my most favorite pics. (by the way, we were in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic)





no, not THAT horse

So William has a super-cute little barn with animals (thanks, Aunt Paige!). He has recently just gotten old enough (and coordinated enough) to play with it.

This morning, I see William take the little horse from the barn set and put it on the ground. He then proceeds to squat on top of the horse (and fall down, of course).

My first thought was - geez kid! what in the heck are you doing?! Then he gets up and runs over to his rocking horse and whines to get on it.

My brilliant child was trying to RIDE the 2-inch tall play horse!! well, at least he wasn't trying to stuff it down the toilet...

Poor little horse, imagine the horror if William had actually managed to sit on it!

Yes, as a matter of fact, I AM a rock star!

So we had dinner over at Nick and Emily's last night (by the way, thanks guys, for the super-yummy food!)

Nick and Emily recently got a Wii. Mike and Nick have played a lot, but I, never being what you might call "good" at eye-hand coordination, really wasn't into it. Oh, how things change.
The newest game is Rock Band and let me tell you, in my next life, I am coming back as a Rock Star!!!

The drums and guitar were fun but a little stressful. My contacts got sooooo crewed up when my eyes got dried out because I was staring at the screen, focused upon not missing any notes! And, by the way, I actually got a 100 score on the singing on one of the songs. Fortunately for me, all it does is measure the difference in the pitch of your voice, not the accuracy of the pitch. :)

Watching a toddler dance is hi-larious!! Every time the was applause on the game, Will just turned to look at the TV, and screamed and clapped. I know William would totally support me in my quest to be a rock star.

As soon as we got up from dinner, William ran to find the drums and he was, shall we say, "upset" when we took the drumsticks away from him. I will definitely let him be in my band when I become a rock star.

Here is a picture of William modeling Emily's new fedora :)


apologies :)

Please excuse Mike's previous post.... apparently he is in a "blog war!" :)

Boycott Emily's blog

Please join me in boycotting Emily's sucky blog. If you wish to support me in this, please leave a comment.


For anyone in the Dallas area who is reading this, you have to eat at Desperado's. We are there at least twice a month! best entree - Desperado Tacos; fajitas are great too! We were there Fri. night with Nick and Emily. William was in full-on toddler mode! (more on that later). The only way he would eat any of his food was to stick the end of a straw in it and feed himself. whatever. at least he ate something.
by the way, please tell me there are more people out there who remember Lavar Burton and Reading Rainbow (remnant of a dinner discussion...)!

Where in the world would a little boy get a lime wedge in a Mexican restaurant? Definitely NOT from the rim of his mommy's margarita glass :)

yeah, so you'll notice the wad o' beans and rice stuck to the end of the straw - that is how William fed himself at dinner - it actually took up about 20 minutes... we might try it more often!


it's over!!

Summer school is over and..............wait for it.................. all my boxes of supplies have already been taken back to my home campus (yeah!) - summer vacation can officially begin!


Score update

For anyone that is keeping track, the score is William: 1, Mommy: 0
(and yes, I think I was mostly asleep in these pictures - I don't really remember them; luckily, Mike had things under control!)

Old School Sesame Street

This just makes me smile.... A LOT!!

And then there is this one... :)


oh yeah, the dogs...

I was reading my friend Emily's blog (by the way, I am soooo proud of her for doing one!) and realized I have not yet mentioned our dogs. A purposeful omission? no. A realization that I just am not a very good dog owner these says? definitely.

Anyhoo, here are Abbie and Lucy. Abbie, when clean and not going nuts, is a gorgeous pure bred labrador. Lucy, when clean and not barking her head off, is a super-cute mostly-beagle.

A special note about Lucy... We got Lucy from the downtown Dallas SPCA a couple of months after we got married. First "should have been a big red flag" about her: she had already been adopted once and was brought back. Second "should have been a big red flag" about her: her name at the time was Snoop. Well, we took a chance on Snoop. Keep in mind that we are her third chance (original owners, first adoptive owners, now us). We renamed her Lucy and took her home. Because she had already been through the SPCA system once and was spayed the first time, the SPCA literally put a tatoo "down there" to remind themselves not to operate again. It is a green circle with a slash through it. No, I am not lying! My dog has a tatoo! (and honestly, that was the third "should have been a big red flag")

So now we have a dog formerly known as Snoop that has a tatoo and is off the streets of downtown Dallas! She now also wears a chain (a choke collar) because Abbie like to pull off Lucy's collar when they play and chew up the nylon ones...
tatoos, chains, living on the streets... I bet she figures out how to spray paint our house pretty soon!
See! She is plotting already!

Library Advenures - numero dos

please, please read numero uno before reading numero dos. You just don't get the same "adventure" vibe if you read this one first. Plus, you need a frame of reference, some background information, etc.

adventure dos:
Picture us if you will, standing in line to check out. Will does NOT want to leave and he is now able to make that quite clear by simply stopping in his tracks and laying down on the TILE floor. And I, to avoid "the look" from nearby patrons, pick him up. When we get to the counter, I set Will on it in front of me. I get my first "humph!" look from the library check-out person. I then open up our bag of books so they can be scanned. After she scans each one, I show Will how to pick them up and out them back in the bag. He's helping, right? Wouldn't she rather him pick up the books than any other assortment of things on her counter? Apparently not! I get another "humph!" look. By this time, I just want out of there. We DID have a lot of books. But regardless, shouldn't a library be supportive of A) reading lots of books and B) children?

Finally, checkout is done - we go to the car! It is BLAZING hot (4pm, middle of July - duh!) so I quickly open the passenger door and get the A/C started. I throw my purse in the seat and hit the lock button so all the doors will open and I can get Will in the backseat. Slam the front passenger door and go to open the back pasenger door where WIll's carseat is. Have you ever had an instant of sheer panic? I did when I realized that the door was locked! And... the front door was locked! Yup, when I hit the switch to unlock the doors, I must have accidentally hit the lock button instead. Seriously, I actually looked down at my arms to make sure I have William - good news! William is NOT locked in the car! Bad news - my purse and cell phone are locked in the car AND it is running. Really not ever been completely lost as to my next course of action, but at that instant I was.
I happen to look across the front seat through the window at the driver side door. it is NOT locked. weird! That door has been giving me fits lately (a whole different story), but every unkind thought (and not nice word) I had towards that door disappeared when I realized that because it is doing weird stuff, it did not lock when I hit the lock switch!!! seriously, God has plans that we have no idea about.

open doors, get in, drive home. not going back to the libary for at least a week (when the DVDs we checked out are due!)

Library Adventures - numero uno

In keeping with our cheap summer fun theme, I have recently discovered the public library. Well, actually it is libraries. Let me explain. We live IN the City of Garland. Garland public libaries are hhmmmm.... how shall I say it?.... not exactly athestically pleasing. We leave NEAR the city of Richardson. The Richardson library is hhmmm... how shall I say it?.... picked over because there is only one location and it is so crowded.
To make a long story short, for the library atmosphere and fun things to see/do, we go to the Richardson libary. To actually get some books and DVDs (Will must have board books - I WILL NOT pay for a book because he tears the pages!), we go to the Garland libary.

Here are some highlights from a recent trip to the Richardson library. We actually found some Spanish board books because they are not with the rest of the board books - they keep them in the nonfiction section because they are a foreign language - go figure!
(by the way, read the next post... the library adventure does not end here!)

Lots of roaming up and down the aisles. You should see us! Me with tote and bag o' books speed walking up and down the same 3-4 aisles, trying to keep up with Mr. "I own the library".

Like I said, the Richardson library is a really nice place! These huge windows surround the children's section!

They have these great little tables where Wil can climb up and sit in the chairs. This book, by the way, is upside down :)

victory over procrastination

it is a small victory, but nevertheless an important one! drumroll, please....................
Summer school lesson plans are all typed and ready to be turned in! (2 days early, might I add!)
here's to continued preserverance in the never-ending battle against procrastination! (honestly, what it WRONG with me?!)


sad news

Rosie, Mike's beloved family dog has passed away. Rosie lived with Mike's mom and sister in Arlington but was such a big part of Mike's life for so long. Affectionately known as "the fat dog", Rosie had not been doing well for awhile. While not a surprise, it is still very sad. Mike, Pat (his mom), and Paige (his sister) will all miss Rosie very much! Here is a picture:

Rosie, with a dog chewie

I'm working on getting a few more photos to share...

It is hard to explain the love between Mike and Rosie - whenever Mike was over at his mom's house, Rosie wanted to be right by his side - she would always get up whenever he came into the room and would always go fetch a shoe for him :)
We love you and will miss you, Rosie!

Hurricane Watch!

Well, since our vacation is on an island in the Atlantic, I (well, mostly Mike) is carefully tracking the progress of Hurricane Bertha. Good news - WAY north if the Dominican - no present danger! Mike told me that if the next Hurricane is named Martha it is a bad omen and we might be in trouble. I told him that they name the hurricanes in alphabetical order, one for each letter, and if they get all the way to the M's before we leave in a couple of weeks that it is more than a bad omen - it is the end of the world! ha!
seriously, I can't help but return to the idea of karma. Mike was planning a bachelor party for our friend Nick a few years ago and the destination was.... New Orleans! The week before the trip, Hurricane Katrina hit. Without intending to make light of the destruction that happened there, Mike has TOTALLY paid his debt to hurricane/trip karma. And when I was young, I once had to come home early from a family vacation to Galveston because of a hurricane (which totally ended up turning north and not making landfall anywhere near Galveston). see! karma debt paid!

more about karma

While I am on the subject... I am generally a believer in the theory of "you get back what you put out there". but more specifically, there are a few areas in which I am deeply committed to the the karma idea:

1. lost dog karma - just ask Mike, whenever I see a dog on the run that has a collar, I ALWAYS stop and at least try to call about it. I have hauled around a huge, stinky golden retriever in the back of my car while the veterinarian (the only number on the collar) tracked down the owner. Turns out, the owners lived right around the corner from where I found it. On another occasion, I stopped on my way to work in the morning, gotten no answer when I called the number on the collar, only to see a lady in a bathrobe running down the street, yelling at me to hold on to her dog! My finest moment however, was when I found a dog in our alley without a collar. The dog kept running up to the same yard over and over again, but no one was home when I knocked on the door. I must have knocked on about 30 doors in our neighborhood with no luck. I kept the dog in our bathroom while I went looking around the neighborhood. I should have trusted the dog - that yard he wanted in really was his (the owners showed up about 45 minutes into my search)

2. gum karma - if you throw gum on the ground, you will step in someone else's gum

3. "smile" karma - if you smile at someone for long enough, or enough times (assuming you don't come off as creepy), they will smile back at you. trust me, it is a proven theory in the dismissal carpool lane at the school where I teach

I am currently investigating the "leave your grocery cart in the middle of the parking lot as opposed to returning it to the cart-return things" karma - don't have a clear verdict yet


procrastination, organization, and cell phone karma

I have a procrastination problem... seriously, anyone have any good tips? Summer school is over at the end of this week and I am still trying to write up all my plans that have to be turned in before I leave on Friday... please note that is is almost midnight - yikes!

on the flip side, I got a "bee in my bonnet" this afternoon and cleaned out/cleaned up/reorganized Will's room. It is amazing how much baby "equipment" a low-maintenance mom and dad can accumulate! And most of it is too large and awkwardly shaped to go into tubs/boxes! For now, it is all sealed up in bags, in stacks in the garage. I finally got all his too-small clothes sorted and into tubs and into the closet

I guess I am just tired now... It doesn't help that I spent, quite literally, 2 hours on the phone with AT&T wireless trying to fix my NEW cell phone. All the wierd phone stuff happens to me. This dumb thing will sometimes make calls, sometimes not. I will get alerts that I have new voicemails and the phone never rang. I have had screeens go blank, never to appear again. My cell phone karma really stinks!

P.S. 14 days 'till the Dominican!



5 days left of summer school...

16 days until we leave for the Dominican...

and 34 days until the start of the Summer Olympics!

4th of July!

Next to Christmas, the 4th of July is my favorite holiday! William slept late so we didn't make the parade (by the way, were you aware that very few cities in this area actually have 4th of July parades?... we were going to try Plano's... I guess it will have to wait until next year). We spent the rest of the day in Arlington. Mike's mom, Pat, bought some super-cute bandanas for the boys so we made them put them on for a few minutes!

William fed GramGram some of his Goldfish crackers!

We had a great meal of ribs, potato salad, deviled eggs (Pat makes the BEST deviled eggs!), and Nathan's hotdogs!

After lunch and a nap, William got in the little wade pool and had a blast!

Finally, we headed back home and made it back in time to watch Garland's fireworks. The fireworks are only 5 minutes from our house. We found a field just down the street form the house and had a perfect view! William was so funny - he sat pretty silent for most if it, just mesmerized.


So last weekend was Carliday! let me explain ... My mom and her two sisters (and their respective families) are all very close but unfortunately, live too far apart to get together very often. :( A few years ago we decided that we should set aside time each year to get together apart from all the stress of a major holiday. Not being a "family reunion" type of family, we decided to create our own holiday to celebrate the occasion. My mom and her sisters' maiden name is Carl, and thus "Carliday" was born. Carliday was held at my parents' home in Glen Rose - we had a great time - here are some of the highlights!
(Scroll over each picture for a caption!)


Too cool to ride in the car

I was putting William in his carseat for the ride home today and spotted these sunglasses under the seat. I put them on him just for kicks and that kid wore them the whole way home! I am officially a toddler chauffeur! hee hee


Olympic Fever

Do you have it too? Have I mentioned that I am a HUGE fan of the Olympics?!?! Political issues aside, I think it is truly one of the most amazing events EVER!! We missed some of the US trials that were on TV this past weekend (more on that later), but they are re-showing them at various points in the evenings this week and I am so excited! And Mike found one of the HD channels that has them until 1:00 this morning - hee hee!
I really can't explain the origin of my fascination, but I will watch any sport in the olympics. I really got into curling during the '06 Winter Olympics :) I think William has Olympic fever also - he climbed up in my lap to watch some of the swimming this evening and kept pointing and blabbering at the pool on TV.
Also, I saw a promo on TV this evening. NBC will be broadcasting over 3600 hours of Olympic events on SEVEN networks (I can even watch it on Telemundo)! Seriously, I don't get giddy about too many things, but the Olympics are definitely one of those things

I have 4 major life goals (besides being a wonderful mother and wife, of course) and going to the Olympics is one of them. Just you wait! One day you will see me in the stands at the archery, kayaking, or some other random event, screaming my head off!

So, I have decided that we are having an Opening Ceremonies party (8.8.08). Anyone who is available is welcome - just let me know! The Olympics are just over a month away - get excited!!


fun with Cooper

My good friend, Wendy, has a son just 1 month older than William. However, they live in Round Rock and we just don't get to see them very often. Wendy and Cooper were visiting her parents this week and we finally got the boys together! William was not super-excited about sharing.... ha!

Negotiating the school bus...

Sharing Goldfish crackers...

focused on the beads...

Not yet!

I was in a well-known "everything you need is there" type store yesterday and I was shocked to see that school supplies are already taking up 5 major aisles in the center of the store! yikes! I haven't even finished teaching summer school yet! However, being the nerd that I am, you know that I went down each aisle and REALLY wanted to buy myself a new pack of pencils and a new box of crayons :) However, because I am against the blatent promotion of such items at this time of year, I showed restraint and moved on...

Also, if you want a headstart in your Christmas decorations (yes, Christmas!), Hobby Lobby is the place to be! (I think if I didn't love Christmas so much, I would be against this also. But then again, I would get ready for Christmas all year long if I could... which gets me to thinking.... maybe I will!)