Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Back on Facebook

As of mid Sunday, I am back on Facebook. My break didn't last long but it was long enough. Besides, a lot of my favorite people are there and we don't want anyone needlessly worrying about me :)

I am determined to stay off as much as I can. If my kids are not allowed on the computer until their jobs are done, then the same should apply to me. I may make the rules, but I should have to follow them too... right?! I never was big on rules, actually, but if I expect my kids to follow them, I need to lead by example.

So when the kids are home, I won't spend all that time I used to one the computer. I will do all my jobs as a mom and make sure they are getting their jobs done too. We will do more stuff together and if they can change their behavior then I can say yes to more things, rather than no all the time.

The first step in fixing a problem is admitting you have one... so here is my confession... my name is Bri and I have a Facebook addiction. If I get on the computer that is the first place I go. I have a habit of making sure I am all caught up before signing off again. I don't want it to affect my home life and vice versa. But I won't be giving it up again any time soon because that's where my friends live!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Weekend Summary

I posted on Saturday about the kids not playing in their soccer game... and they didn't. They wore their shirts with jeans and sat on the sidelines watching their team play. Actually Lexi watched, we cheered and Jacob played around because he cannot sit still! But, I think my point was made. If they cannot change their behavior then they cannot do the things they want to do... like play soccer. One of the other dads was bummed that Lexi wasn't playing because he likes watching the only girl hold her own against the boys. Their team ended up losing 8-3 but it was a pretty good game, none the less.

Before soccer we went to our friend's house to watch the Buckeyes kick some butt... FINALLY! They haven't exactly been playing very well but we still watch. It's always a good day when they win though. Everyone is always in a much better mood :)

After soccer we ran home to get the corned beef I had in the crock pot. On the way back to our friend's house the full crock pot spilled on the floor at my feet. The next time we turned and it tried to spill I did my best to stop it but I forgot to use the pot holder and burnt my finger. It hurt like a biatch but it was worth it because we love hanging out with Nick & Helena. So even if that meant I had to keep a close watch on the hot crock pot the entire 30 minute drive through winding roads, that was okay because they are awesome, and worth it.

They don't have any kids but the kids love "Uncle Nick" and "Aunt Hena" so they love going over there. They keep candy and juice boxes on hand. They have a Wii & tons of kids movies. And my favorite thing about them... they are bad asses! They would make awesome parents. It melts my heart when they put the kids in their places instead of coddling and giving in to them like most other adults.

Anyway, we enjoyed some whiskey slush and some delicious corned beef. Not that I am being biased to the dinner I made, but I was told so by everyone that it was yummy. It always makes me happy to know other people are enjoying my food. It's even better when Lexi eats it... and she did!

After dinner I have no idea what we did HA! We sat around talking... oh and we made s'mores with the kids. Uncle Nick lit a fire and us ladies helped the kids roast marshmallows and put together their snack while the guys watched football & drank beer in the house. So typical LoL

Kadie was tired and ready to go home right after that so we got everyone ready and as I was walking out the door, John offered to let me stay and go out with Helena since she had been more than hinting at it all night. He would take the kids home and I could crash at their place. I was tired, and not really in a going out mood, but how could I pass that up! He was giving me an out. An out that I really, really, really needed after the last couple of weeks I have been through. So I took it.

Helena and I went to the bar for some drinks and karaoke... although we didn't actually do any karaoke. We just sat at the bar with a steady flow of drinks. We used the cash we had to buy some pull tabs and we each won $1 that we spent on more pull tabs HA! The guy next to us won big from the same set of pull tabs that we were pulling. Such a bummer, but we were happy for him! We also had some amazing bread sticks and had a good laugh when the bartender accidentally changed the channel to Barney. I was feeling pretty good and actually cheered, cause I <3 Barney and I made him change it back so I could get a quick picture. I was actually pretty sober for having drank so much but Helena was another story. I decided it would be best if I drove home or else we were getting a cab.

We got back to the house and I watched some movies on tv with Nick while she pecked at the keyboard on her phone. It was hilarious watching her focus with one eye closed and using one finger punching one letter at a time. She ended up falling asleep with her phone in her hand too! Been there, done that... and those seem to always be great nights, at least at the time. Hind sight might prove other wise but, eh, what can you do.

Then on Sunday, Nick and I headed to a bar to watch some football while we waited for John to come get me. John brought the kids and we had a yummy breakfast that ended up costing us $60! The kids meals were $6 each so I ordered a la carte items for them. Unfortunately, the cost of drinks at this place are $2.74! Yes, almost $3 for a kid sized drink... and we had TWO FULL CUPS that weren't refills still sitting on the table when we left. Thankfully everyone enjoyed their brunch (since most had already eaten breakfast and it wasn't lunch time yet) or else I'd have been pretty pissed about the cost. I'll remember to order water with lemon & sugar next time we go... make them some lemonade for FREE instead of spending $3 per person on fountain pop. Anyway, it was a nice morning out with the family (and Nick!)

So I had an amazingly fun weekend with some amazingly awesome people. Thank you to my hubby for being okay with me staying even though we had a new puppy at home. Thank you to Helena for really wanting to go out because we all know I needed that break from reality. Thank you to Nick for making sure I had a place to crash and Gatorade for rehydrating in the morning. I couldn't ask for better people in my life. Love you all!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Soccer Saturday

Today is the kids' 3rd soccer game here in Washington and they won't be playing. Not because we will be out of town. Not because we have some prior commitment. But because of their behavior this week. In fact, this will be the first time they have missed a soccer game for this reason. I just couldn't let it slide though.

They have been exceptionally rude and disrespectful all week. Listening has proven quite difficult. Fighting has been a daily occurrence. And the back talk, in heavy supply. As you probably saw from my last post... this week has not been much fun around here. However, that is going to change.

That change starts with mama sticking to her guns. I will not bend on this. While I am incredibly sad and disappointed that I will not get to see them play with their team, I know that me bending is not what is best here. They deserve to learn real consequences for their actions and know that when I say something, that is what goes.

So I will sit on the sidelines cheering on Yelm Storm while my children sit on the bench for the entire game. I hope that this teaches them something and that they will be ready to listen and behave next week. I do not plan on them missing out on any more soccer games this season but I will not hesitate to take that away either if their behavior continues down this path.

On a similar note... the three little ones start their games on Thursday and they couldn't be more excited. I am a little worried about being in two places at once but I think I can dig out my supermom cape by then. Lexi and Jacob practice from 6-715 with their coach requesting they arrive early to warm up and the other three practice from 6-630 with a 30 minute game to follow. Luckily the two fields are not far apart. We will see how it goes.

Friday, September 23, 2011

One Week

It's been one week since my last blog post. Other than wanting to sing the Bare Naked Ladies song, I now feel like I'm introducing myself at an AA meeting. And if I was a weaker person, this week may have driven me to drink... or smoke... or well, let's not think about anything else that could have happened.

I haven't given up who I am but I am finding it hard to be the outside me, while the inside me is screaming in agony. Every once in awhile that dark soul rears her ugly head and she can be found complaining on Facebook. Generally, that is all she needs to be put back in her place but this week has been different.

It seems that one thing after another is making her... making me... crazy. In the grand scheme of things, nothing major has happened. No one has died. We still have a roof over our heads. Money isn't really a problem. The kids are healthy. Our marriage is intact. Still I am finding it hard to handle the petty crap I have to deal with on a day to day basis.

The petty crap that is my children misbehaving. Their behavior has progressively gotten worse as the school year drags on. Our summer was less stressful than this and I am one of the moms that cannot wait for school to be back in session. You can call me selfish, or unfit to be a mom but you won't be saying anything new or nothing I haven't thought at one point or another. My point is, this is who I am. For the most part I enjoy my kids when they are home, but I need that 6hr sanity saver that is school. Besides that, it wouldn't do them any good to stay home anyway. I am not a good teacher. John is way better than I am and he has to work to support the 7 of us (9, if you include the dogs!). It just isn't fair to them or to me which is why they go to school and why one of my favorite times of year is Back2School time!

Anyway, it's just been a hellish week. On top of the kids behaving worse than they have in a long time, we also have the issue with ABF, the moving company we used for our DITY move to Washington. Long story short, they never got the weight tickets that we specifically asked (and paid) for. No weight tickets means we have no paperwork to turn in to transportation. No paperwork to turn in to transportation means our advance needs to be paid back and we won't get the rest of the money we are owed for doing a DITY move. After 6wks of trying to figure this out we get an email from our ABF contact that they will be refunding our money. That sounds reasonable, right? Except for one little tiny factor... what we paid them is not the same amount that we received in our advance from the Army. It's about $1100 short. That means once we get this $5000 back we then have to turn around and pay the Army that money plus the other eleven hundred on top of it. And there goes our Christmas vacation which we had planned with the other $4000 that we are no longer getting from the Army due to the ABF driver's failure to DO HIS JOB!

So yah, my week has been rough. And let us not forget the drama that comes from Facebook. Like I said, petty crap. But in all honesty, it is my petty crap. It sucks, and I don't have to feel bad about feeling crappy over such stupid stuff. It's my own demons and I need to work them out for me and my family. I can't do that if I am constantly on Facebook getting annoyed and irritated by every little thing that doesn't matter. So I deactivated my account for now. I don't know when I will be back but I know I will be back. If you can understand that, I thank you. If you can't, I'm sorry you will still have to deal with it. I just hope to be welcomed back, when outside me comes back.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Fun Photo Friday

My kids are tres chic! Or so they think! I love posting pics of their outfit choices... most of which are picked out solely on their own with very little influence from mom, or anyone else for that matter.

Here is what we have seen since school started last week:

Thursday, September 15, 2011


WHOA WHOA WHOA!!! My last blog post was #500!!! Way to go me :)

Usually when someone hits a blogging mile stone they give something away. However, because I am not your usual blogger (cause I suck at keeping up with it) I am asking YOU to give ME something.

Kidding! Well sort of! Leave a comment on this 501st blog post and let me know what your favorite past post of mine is. If you haven't read many... you've got some catching up to do. And if you have read them all, but forget which is your favorite... skim through them and I bet one jumps out at you.

Also, don't forget to check out my other blog listed on the left side over there &lt;--- it's called You're a Poet and Didn't Know It. It's got a whole bunch of cheesy poems on it, and some pretty good ones too. Did you know I recently hit 70 posts over there??? And trust me, there is WAY more crap to post over there that will be sure to have you doubled over from laughter at my patheticness. Just bare in mind that I wrote a lot between the ages of 12 and 15 when I thought my world would end if boyfriend of the week broke up with me.

Anyway, for those that have been here all along, thanks for sticking with me. For the newbies, welcome aboard! And hold on, it's sure to be a bumpy ride :)

*Edited to add that THIS is blog number 500 HAHA! I already wrote tomorrow's blog post which made me think this was 501... ok, back to your regularly scheduled normalness*

Dear Kadie Bug,

From the moment I found out I was pregnant with you, I hoped and prayed you weren't a boy. I had my hands full enough with one boy and one girl and I knew I couldn't handle two boys back to back. You HAD to be a girl, for my own sanity.

Lexi told me from the get go that you were a girl. She seemed to have a knack for knowing these things. Not too much later, an ultrasound confirmed it. You were in fact a girl. I couldn't have been happier. Yet I occasionally had this overwhelming feeling that you were a boy and that the ultrasound was wrong.

I was scheduled to be induced the morning of Sept 15th. You weren't due until the 29th but daddy was leaving for Georgia and we wanted him to spend some time with you when you were born. On our way to the hospital I had a mini panic attack. I was afraid that you were going to in fact be a boy and we did NOT have any boy names picked out. I think I scribbled down Kyle and Lucas, just in case.

The labor and delivery was pretty uneventful, much like Lexi's and Jacob's. There was no high speed driving to get to the hospital, like with Sara and no mommy yelling at doctors and nurses that the baby was coming, like with Adam. It was pretty normal and we were so excited when you were finally born 12hrs after arriving at the hospital.

Aunt April brought Lexi and Jacob to see you. Jacob instantly fell in love but Lexi was another story. She didn't like you... not one bit! She wanted nothing to do with you, or with me. I don't think she smiled for days. I bet she was just afraid you were gonna be the princess now and she would be forgotten. But that didn't happen. At least, we didn't forget about her.

You, however, are a little princess. Middle child syndrome does not hold you down. You know what you want and you know how to get it. You are a diva. You are a rock star. You are smart, and beautiful, and funny, and a tom boy! You've proven to me that it doesn't matter if you are a boy or a girl you can do it all and you can be it all.

I love you to pieces, Kaydence BreAnne! Don't you ever change! Happy 7th Birthday!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Blogging is an Outlet

Apparently I haven't had much to let out in this last year. Since the beginning of 2011 I have only posted 13 blogs... 9 of which have been this month.

I think I need to get back to blogging with discipline. It really is a great outlet and it keeps my brain working. The more crap I post, the more good stuff will come out as well. I may not always entertain you with my rambling, I may not always invoke some emotion but I will be doing something that I love.

Ever since I can remember, I have used writing as a way to get things out. I don't necessarily do it for other people, but for myself. It keeps me from going completely insane. Holding everything in just makes me crazy... er, crazier. We all know I'm not the sanest person.

Anyway, I hope you stick around to see what I have to say... and if you don't, that's okay too. I will still come back here and say what I need to say. The good, the bad, the ugly... this will be my outlet.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Retail Therapy

Today has just been a blah kind of day. I wasn't feeling very well... I didn't want to sit at home but I also didn't want to go do anything. Sara twisted my arm though and made me go to Starbucks.

I ordered a Venti Skinny Caramel Macchiato. Yes, it was a venti kind of day. And she ordered a Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate (which she didn't like). I also enjoyed a slice of Banana Chocolate Chip Coffee Cake which was heaven on a plate! Mmmm. Sara decided on a Rocky Road Cake Pop but they were out. She was so bummed and it took her like 3 minutes (while others were behind us in line) to pick out something else. She finally decided on the Birthday Cake Pop (the pink one with white dots) and the nice barista gave her two since they were out of the other one. This made her happy!

We left Starbucks and went over to Walmart for some retail therapy. Yelm is so small that Wally World is pretty much our only option for all around shopping. I was on the lookout for a pair of brown boots for Kadie. I knew we had seen some there when I took all the kids shopping with me one day so I decided I would look again. Of course I couldn't find anything in her size. They had 11's and they had 1's but finding 12's or 13's was not happening. I ended up getting her a pair of size 12 black Hello Kitty boots and gave up on the brown boots. I had just bought new boots for Lexi so she was all set and Sara found a super cute pair of pink sparkly Ugg-style boots.

I knew I wanted to look for the boys too, so we walked over to the next aisle. You know there is never a big enough selection of shoes (or clothes or anything else) for boys. However, they did have the cutest brown & camouflage cowboy boots AND they had ONE pair in Adam's size. There wasn't hardly anything for bigger boys, so I went with a pair of tan work boots for Jacob.

As I was walking away I noticed a brown pair of boots sitting on the bench seat where you can sit to try on shoes. They were the exact ones I was wanting to get Kadie but they didn't have her size. Luck would have it that THESE were a size 13! (Lucky 13?!). I'm not usually that lucky. Then we saw some clearance shoes where they had these leopard print slip ons... also in a size 13 for $3. I couldn't pass them up, so I snagged those too!

There went an easy 100 bucks on shoes for the ever growing children. This comes after scouring Ebay for rain boots for the kids and spending about $100 there too. I am thinking my kids are set on boots for awhile... at least I hope so. I, err, the check book can't handle another growth spurt right now. We need to save some money for our movie addiction LoL just kidding... sorta :p

Speaking of that... I spotted the $5 movie bin and had to check it out. I was just talking about wanting to find Dante's Peak and hoping I'd find it in that bin. I have a love/hate relationship with that bin. On one hand, it's great! They put some great older movies in there and sometimes double, and even quadruple, features. And they are cheap dvd's. On the other hand, it sucks! You can't really look through it because it is pretty much overflowing and you seem to pull out the same movie over and over again. And then you find more and more and more you WANT to buy and could easily spend a small fortune in 10 minutes.

I didn't find what I was looking for but I did find a Mask double feature... The Mask and The Son of the Mask for only $5. I also found a Dumb & Dumber double feature... the first movie and the second movie... sweet! Then I let Sara get a movie since she said she didn't like what I picked out. She went with Tim Burton's Corpse Bride. I have never seen it but they love Coraline and Alice in Wonderland and I think they have seen The Nightmare Before Christmas. So I be they will like this one too. Sara seemed pretty excited about it.

I also got some groceries while I was there but still need to get some meat for the next month. I could drive 45 minutes to the nearest Sam's Club or I could see if the local Safeway is having their BOGO meat sale. I guess I could always see if the neighbor is making a trip to Costco any time soon and check that out. I don't know.

What do I know? Tomorrow is payday and I will be getting in some more retail therapy some way, some how. And there will likely be a trip to Starbucks because dammit if it isn't 1/2 a mile from my house.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Another Year, Another September 11th

I spent the day yesterday doing laundry, watching Grey's Anatomy & NCIS Los Angeles and catching a little bit of football. The kids did their chores and played outside. John made me breakfast, the kids had lunch and then they had dinner at the table while John and I ate in front of the tv.

I thought that yesterday should have been something more. Ten years ago there was a horrific tragedy placed upon our country that anyone old enough to remember, does. I do remember. It does break my heart. But yesterday felt like just another day.

I had hoped to use the 10 yr anniversary as a teaching point for my kids. My oldest is going on 11, so she was a baby when 9-11 happened. My kids have watched World Trade Center (the movie) and we briefly talked about it being based on real events but I am not sure that they know this is the reason why their dad has to go off to war and may be doing so in just a few short months.

While yesterday didn't bring some big emotional wave across our family, I do plan on some time this week sitting down with the kids and talking about it. There was a movie that John recorded for the kids not too long ago about 9-11 so we will probably watch that. And we will also tell them that Daddy might be deploying in December (although it was confirmed, now they are back peddling).

We do remember. We will never forget. There will always be a broken piece of our hearts for those victims of the 9-11 attacks but please don't judge if we live our normal lives for our children. I'd prefer they live in their own little blissful bubble like I try to do. We will tell them what happened and why, but we won't try to scare them. Tragedy is plastered all over the news and the internet that that is all some people can think of. We prefer not to live that way.

God bless the families of the lives lost that Tuesday in September. Remember to kiss your loved ones, tell them you love them and live for today.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

On The Wagon

The weight-loss, workout, 5k bandwagon, that is!

A few weeks ago another military wife posted about a 5k obstacle run coming up in October. It looked like a lot of fun so I bit the bullet and signed up. I have never run any kind of race before and this first one is sure to be a blast with all the obstacles.

In preparation for this run, called Rampage at the RAC, I decided to do a workout called the 100 Workout. It consists of doing 100 jumping jacks, 90 crunches, 80 lunges, 70 leg lifts, 60 jumping jacks, 50 crunches, 40 lunges, 30 leg lifts, 20 jumping jacks and a 10 minute run. It sounds like the perfect overall workout to prepare for the running, the climbing, the crawling and the jumping that is sure to be included during the race.

I knew I would never be able to the workout straight through so I devised my own little plan. I would start with 1/5 of the workout for a week, then 1/4 the following week, then 1/3 and so on. So far it has worked out great! I have even been changing it up a bit and instead of the leg lifts I have been doing bicycle crunches and instead of the final 2 minute run for this first week, I have been doing 10 push ups (the girly kind cause my arms are like jello LoL).

Today was my last day of the first week so starting tomorrow I will be up to 1/4 of the workout. I think I will do bicycle crunches in place of the higher set of leg lifts then keep the leg lifts for the lower set. I will also keep the run at the end because that is really going to help me with the race. I am a terrible runner. I get out of breath so easily so I need to get my stamina up. So in order to get some upper body workout in I think I will throw in 10 push ups after each set of crunches.

I really hope to be able to complete the full 100 workout by Oct 8th (the day of the Rampage). So wish me luck!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Fun Photo Friday

Friday has always been my day for sharing random photos from my life (or just from the current week) but with Facebook I don't really need to share them in two places. Not sure what I will do from here on out, but for today I will be posting some photos I edited on picnik.com. It's a free site where you can put some pretty cool effects on your photos. I have photoshop on my computer but picnik is so easy and you can save the images back to your computer! Anyway, here are a few that I whipped up yesterday afternoon...


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Adam's 1st Day of Kindergarten

Favorite things to a 5 Year Old

Color: Pink (Jacob's was pink at this age too)
Number: 10 (I'm surprised it wasn't 5 since that's his age)
TV Show: Scooby Doo, Dora, Diego and many more (he cracks me up!)
Movie: Scooby Doo
Song: Red, Gold & Green (aka Karma Chameleon)
Food: Yogurt
Candy: All kinds (of course!)
Toy: Webkinz Reindeer and Froggy
Activity: Cleaning (yes, he really said this)
Superhero: Iron Man
Princess: Mom (awwww!)
Singer: Mommy (I swear I'm not prompting him)
Book: The Shark Book (I think it's just called Sharks)
Animal: Dogs
Drink: It's the best drink in the world, chocolate milk!
Restaurant: The Pizza Place (he doesn't care as long as it's pizza LoL)
Game: That's easy! BATMAN!
Website: That's easy too! Webkinz!
Place to Live: At this house
Place to Visit: That's easy! Wendi... no, Aunt April (I couldn't make this stuff up if I wanted to!)

He was so excited for his first day of Kindergarten! That also meant he would get to ride the bus. What a big, independent, little man he has turned into. I love this kid to pieces and I am so glad he loves school! I didn't cry, he is my 4th to go off to Kindergarten after all, but I did get a little misty eyed with pride. You go rock that Kindergarten class, Adam Bomb! Mommy loves you!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Week of Firsts

I had only planned on writing one blog for today but then I realized there are so many great first time things happening this week.

The kids started a new school year, in a new school. While that isn't the first time they have started in a new school... it was the FIRST day in a new school. They had a great day too! All the kids liked their teachers and they have even started making friends already. I think I may have them all write a blog post from their point of view about their first week of school. It could be interesting.

Tomorrow Adam gets to start his FIRST day as a Kindergartner. He is super excited! He keeps telling me he wants to go to school and ride the bus and I have to keep reminding him that it will happen. He just has to be patient... and we all know how patient 5 year olds can be.

And TONIGHT Lexi, my oldest daughter... my little girl... my baby, gets to attend her FIRST EVER concert! Last year for her birthday she received tickets to see Taylor Swift in May in Iowa (technically Illinois, but whatever) but was unable to go because we had a funeral in Ohio that same day :( She was upset but she understood why she couldn't go. But we still owed her tickets. When we found out we were moving to Washington and that Taylor Swift would be here in Tacoma just a month after we got here, we knew we had to get those tickets. I made sure I was online to get decent seats as soon as I got the pre-sale info and the sale opened up. Unfortunately the ticket hoarders were too quick and there were no seats in any of the sections I wanted so I waited. I kept watching StubHub to see if there were any good seats with decent prices. I was not paying $500 for nosebleeds and would prefer $200 (or less) for two tickets since retail was only $70. It took a while but I eventually found seats in a section I liked for just over $250 total including fees and what not. Not bad for a sold out concert and the lower level closest to the stage! Anyway, she was excited when she found out we got her tickets and cannot wait to go. And I cannot wait to hear all about it!

Next week she gets to attend her second concert after winning Selena Gomez tickets from a Radio Disney event at the South Hill Mall in Puyallup. I get to take her to that one. They aren't exactly great seats but it's at a fairground and the tickets were free so we will take them without complaining. She just wishes she would have won the meet and greet passes too!

So anyway... a week of firsts is upon us. So many first time things that we will look back on one day and wonder where the heck time has gone!

Dear Family & Friends

As we have settled into our new home near Ft. Lewis, WA, we also settle back into our lives as a real Army family. You may think that we have always been a real Army family and I would be inclined to agree if we hadn't spent the last two years on a cake assignment in the Midwest no where near a major installation.

Being at Rock Island Arsenal, IL was like being on a 24 month vacation. We had daddy and husband at our beck and call. He was able to coach soccer, be home for school functions, go into work late so I could go to appointments and take long weekends to Ohio on a whim. It was nice and I was spoiled. Now back to reality.

He now has regular p.t. in the mornings and we will be lucky to have him home in time for dinner. He has already left us for a week and a half for training and I was a mess. Not to mention the late nights of meeting flights this week putting him at work between the hours of 9pm and 3am. I was so not prepared for any of this. I think I lost my supermom cape in the move... or it was revoked! I don't know. But I definitely need it back.

We learned last Friday that the 3rd Stryker Brigade would be deploying in December for 12 months. Not all of it, but most of it. One unit would be deploying later than the rest but be back before them due to the new 9 month deployments starting in January but that's not John's unit. Another unit is staying behind altogether... also not John's unit. However, not all of his unit would be deploying. We had anticipated the deployment due to rumors but we were hopeful that he would get to avoid a third deployment but no such luck. Before Christmas, our hero will be deployed to Afghanistan.

It wasn't easy news to swallow. Especially since we have a Christmas vacation planned. We were supposed to go as a family to Southern California but this deployment has changed that. The kids and I will still go and my sister is meeting us there but we still wish daddy could go. It won't be the same without him and we will definitely miss him.

I had already been contemplating a Thanksgiving vacation. I was trying to work out the details for flying to D.C. with the kids for a long weekend while one of my friends is in the area. After receiving the confirmation of deployment I began to rethink that idea. A better idea would be go home to Ohio to visit family before John goes overseas again. However, neither vacation is proving to be affordable. Flying 7 people across the country is costly. Add in a rental car because no one has a 7-8 passenger vehicle to loan us plus food and we are talking easily $4000 for a 5 day vacation.

This lead me to an even better idea. We just moved to a new house that many people are interested in coming to see. After all, it is a beautiful house in a beautiful state. So I extend to you, a Thanksgiving invitation. If you would like to visit with us before John ships out then you are more than welcome. Or if you have an extra $4000 lying around, that would work too :)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Today marked 103 days since my kids' last day of school. 103 days of my kids home 24/7. 103 days of which flew by in a blur yet dragged on like a lecture about well, any lecture.

Finally school is back in session. There is structure again. There is a bed time. There is a wake up time. There is breakfast before 10am and the door isn't constantly being left open with the kids running in and out all day. I could not wait for this day to come.

Yes, it makes me sound like a terrible mom when half the other moms out there are weeping over their babies starting Kindergarten and their oldest going off to Jr. High and their fun summers coming to an end. Don't get me wrong, we had a fun summer and watching my children grow up in the blink of an eye causes me to have minor panic attacks but I was soooo ready to have them out of the house 6hrs a day.

Three out of five kids started the 2011-2012 school year today. One more starts on Thursday. Unfortunately for Sara she will not be starting until next fall. We decided it would be best to save the money on preschool and keep her home with mommy. And in case that makes me seem selfish... it gets worse! I really wasn't prepared to be alone 6hrs out of the day. What the hell would I do with myself? With my time? Yikes!

Anyway, today started out pretty good. Kadie was up at the butt crack of dawn and watched the sun come up while I worked out and made lunches. Lexi and Jacob were up just after 7 and the other two were up shortly after that. The bus was a few minutes late but no major issues this morning.

Sara, Adam & I then took a morning trip to Starbucks to celebrate the kids' first day of school. That was the one thing Sara had been looking forward to since we told her she would be staying home with me instead of going to school this fall. The little booger didn't even finish her hot chocolate LoL

Then we headed to the school for Adam's Kindergarten testing. Many of the teachers thought Sara was there for testing as well and were surprised that she wasn't. Adam went back with one of the teachers and Sara sat listening to some Dr. Seuss books. When Adam was finished I asked if he was ready to go and didn't notice that Sara went missing. It took me a minute but I realized that she was trying to sneak into Kindergarten. She had gone back with another teacher to do some activities (aka the testing). Everyone thought it was hilarious and said she would definitely be ready next year.

Next on our agenda was shopping at Walmart and a haircut for Adam. I let the babies get some lunchables for lunch and they picked out the healthier version with pineapples and a fruit strip instead of cookies and candy. I also got them playdoh to play with after lunch which I NEVER do. I hate playdoh. They always make a big mess with it and mix all the colors together. They did well with it though. Adam then got his haircut and impressed me with his patience like always. He has always been good while getting his haircut, ever since he was a baby. Sara begged for her haircut too. Too bad I wasn't paying $12 for her to get her bangs cut so we compromised and she agreed that I could cut her bangs later.

After that we came home, had our lunch, played with our playdoh and took a nap. Mommy needed it. It didn't last long though because I got a call from the school saying we could come in today to meet with Adam's teacher. That was quick! We weren't supposed to know until later and go in tomorrow. He was excited though, and we were ready to get that part of the process done. His teacher was really nice and really impressed with what he knew already. And I really liked her too so that's a plus.

We unpacked his school supplies and then came home for a snack. The kids would be home in an hour and I had hardly gotten to sit down all day so I took some time to sit down at the computer and get a little Facebook in. I uploaded the pics from open house and this morning so all our friends and family could feel a little bit a part of the kids' new school year.

I finished that up and realized the kids were going to be home any minute. I grabbed my camera and went to sit outside with Sara. At 420pm (5 minutes after the bus was supposed to drop them off) the neighbor said she just got a call saying the buses had not arrived at the school yet. I came in to check my phone and listened to the message. As of 409pm the buses were not at the school and the kids were expected to be 15-25 minutes late getting home. They finally made it around 435pm and were none too happy about getting home so late.

If I thought my day had been hectic already, it just got worse. My house now sounded like a mental institute. There was screaming, there was fighting, there was crying, there was whining and I may have been rocking in the corner sucking my thumb, but that cannot be confirmed. I had one child that was overly tired. I had two children complaining about the new chore chart. And the other two were running around the house as if they lacked attention today. They were ALL starving. I couldn't think straight and dinner was in the process. There wasn't much time to get dinner done, get the kids fed and ready and off to soccer by 6pm.

We made it to soccer on time but not without more screaming and crying. Jacob couldn't find his socks. Sara set my car alarm off. Adam tried "killing" Jacob with the car door. I was feeling my energy coming to a screeching halt. It was not pretty. But I dropped Thing 1 and Thing 2 off at the practice field and used the last $5 on my Starbucks card to calm my nerves. I came home and shortly after daddy came home. He said he would get the older two from soccer so I could stop going a mile a minute and that made my stress level drop about 1000 degrees.

So while I love that my kids are out of my hair in a structured environment, in a place they actually like to be and I wait in high anticipation of this time of year... it sucks on days like today where I am on the go for the majority of the day. I suppose that means I have a love/hate relationship with the school year.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Jr High is Forever

This weekend I had the opportunity to fly cross country. The sole purpose of this trip was to reunite with some of the best friends I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Some of them I haven't seen in five years, some even longer. However, if you were a fly on the wall this weekend you would never have known that.

These were my best friends from Jr.High. We did everything together. We hung out at the mall. We left each other notes in their lockers. We skipped class to hide out in the bathroom or to make pancakes. We had parties. We made silly videos. We laughed. We loved. We cried. We broke up. We kept in touch. We lost touch. And we always came back together as if nothing had changed.

The reminiscing was not in short supply. Megan rambled off her memories that we agreed she needs to put in print so the rest of us can try and remember. The girl doesn't forget a thing and she never lets you forget it either. We discussed the difference between the Billy's which I embarrassingly couldn't figure out. But I think I got it now... Billy O. = Jr. High, Billy M. = High School... Check! We recalled embarrassing moments that do not bare repeating and we joked about what could have been.

The memorable quotes were a plenty but I will just share my faves. The will be out of context, but they were funny or cute or just us. You may not get them but it's okay, we do!

"Is she pregnant?!" "It would appear so!" "ARE YOU PREGNANT?!"

"Every one's wife hates me." {cough, cough} "I mean, my wife doesn't hate you."

"I'm not drunk. STOP LAUGHING AT ME!"

{Listening to old school music on our phones} "I was thinking more like this..." {plays So In Love by All 4 One}

"I've never seen her drunk. She's always been pregnant. Except for 8th grade."

Oh, it was such a fun weekend. I will never forget it... and if I do, I will know who to ask for details ;)

My best friends that I left behind when we moved from Massachusetts to Ohio 16 years ago never let our friendship die. We may have drifted apart over the years but we always found our way back to each other. We found our way through life as individuals but could never live without the memories we created. And that is always the best part of my visits.

Thank you for helping to make me who I am today. Thank you for loving me after all these years. Thank you for being you. I love you to pieces!

Look at Ryan big pimpin' with all those hotties! Poor Toby Keith getting no lovin' ;)