Sunday, October 30, 2005

A Weekend Moment

Ah, that hubby of mine surprised me and got to come home for a 3 day weekend. It was wonderful. It was sweet. It was perfect. Until........

Remember a previous post? Where I threatened anyone who dared to teach my baby how to say "Yee Haw?" Uh huh.

Standing in the kitchen doing that duty stuff....unloading a pizza. I hear behind me my husband pick our son up and start talking to him. Then I hear him whisper to Vitt :"Say Yee Haw. Say Yee Haw." I politely shot my foot out behind me to kick him. He was soooo amused. I was not. Then I get ..."Ha ha ha ha ha ha. At least now you know I read your blog. Ha ha ha ha ha ha"

Ha ha my butt.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

The Ghost of Halloween Past

Halloween 1998

I am pregnant with my second child and we attend the Halloween party at our church. Paige is 4 years old and the baby of the church. So spoiled. So loved. She was very special to Bill. He was a friend of ours that has since passed away from cancer. He loved this baby more than anything. He had a son the same age that was in Texas with his ex-wife and Bill didn't get to see him alot and so I think he transferred alot of his love to Paige as a result. She totally reciprocated.

We were having a hayride that evening and I declined going because of being pregnant. Just didn't feel like sitting in hay and being bounced all over creation. Not a problem, said Bill. He would be more than happy to take Paige. So he bundles her up in a blanket and hat and off they go with the group.

It was a right cheesy hayride. It was just to a local graveyard and a few people were there to scare the wagon passengers with a grab here and there and scary laugh. Paige is huddled in Bill's lap and peeking out here and there. Keep in mind that she is 4 years old. All of a sudden there came this figure across the graveyard. It was a teenager dressed in a sheet.

Paige says: "Oh No, Bill!!! I dun seen the Holy Ghost!! "

Even though I wasn't there in person to hear this, it's still one of my favorite memories. When Bill was dying and Hospice was in his home....I called him and with a raspy voice and talking slow...he still laughed about it.

Thursday, October 20, 2005


Snippets from my week:

  • Took the two youngest for their well-child checkups Tuesday. It went okay until the doctor came in. Vitt was a froot loop because he hadn't had a nap and he was being allowed to run around in nothing but a diaper. Oh, the freedom. The doctor literally had to chase him down to exam him. We had to shout our conversation to each other because together, Mak and Vitt are a force to reckon with. He pronounced them fit and healthy and off we went. Got to the van and remembered at least 2 questions I forgot to ask him. Well, if I can't google it, then I guess I'll never know.

  • After leaving the doctor's office, we headed to the grocery store. Sweet Joseph, there was this car thing attached to the buggy for my kids' riding pleasure. Vitt headed straight for it and climbed in. Sweet. I just knew I could get some shopping done with him riding shotgun in the front with Mak. Yeah, right. By aisle 3, that boy was hanging out of the side windows and windshield hole like he was a Duke boy or something. All he needed to know then was how to yell "Yeeeeeeee Hawwwww".

  • Speaking of my sure-footed mountain goat...a.k.a. Vitt....He's into dancing now. The jury is still out as to whether or not he's got a groove thang going on. His dancing partner this morning...A simple plastic hanger. Innocent enough? Hanger is propped against his Poppies Stool (small stool handmade by his Poppies) and as he gallops by, he trips, hits the stool, the hanger pops up and catches him under the eye. This kid is going to keep a perpetual black eye I fear.

  • My mother is over visiting for a few tonight and is having a conversation with Paige. The gist of the conversation is about our recent problem with mosquitoes. They are almost plague-like in their intensity and we are begging for a frost to give us some relief. (which won't happen til near the end of November if we're lucky) Paige is making the comment to Nana that she can't walk from the road ...down our the house without being carried off. Now Makenna is watching t.v. and decides she's going to jump into the conversation and only hearing half of it says: "Sissy, what's going to carry you off?"...Paige, in her infinite supply of sarcasm says "The kid eating trolls that hide in the bushes on the edge of the yard". Good one, Paige. Now that kid will NEVER go back outside again. Jeesh.

  • I, again, win the Worse Mother Award tonight. Mak, nor Vitt, seemed to want to go to bed. They would giggle and holler and try to tear the bedroom up. I am doing laundry and Mak comes and tells me that "Vitt is butt-naked". I admit that I didn't believe her. I go in the bedroom and sure enough..the kid is. Butt. Naked. I redress him and tell them both good night. Giggle. Sounds of things falling. A few minutes later I walk to the bedroom door and Makenna is sitting up in bed doing her thing and Vitt is standing up in the crib doing his thing..whatever that was. I all of a sudden in a loud booming voice say "You better lay down and go to sleep! NOW!" Makenna immediately rolls over and I would bet she instantly fell asleep. I traumatized Vitt so badly he just started crying, but 5 minutes later I checked again and he was also asleep.

Things are never boring around here. And before this goes any further, I DARE anyone to teach that boy how to say "Yeee Haww". I will hunt you down and inflict serious damage if you do.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Manners....Part 2

I address this to Miss Laura who left a comment on my previous post. How nice to meet you! I have a couple of rules that I try to follow when teaching my children how to have manners.

1. My own personal rule of thumb as to when to use Mr. or Miss (which also goes for Mrs.). If the person is old enough to be your mom or dad, then use the proper titles. Exceptions to this rule are bosses and most probably the President. People who are working in any public place and are serving you in any way ...i.e. waiter/ personnel...well, you get the picture.I just personally feel like they deserve respect for being out there working! I, myself, have a hard time figuring it out sometimes because I'm 34 and I don't want to offend someone by not using the right approach. I more often than not end up using the proper titles just to be safe.

2. When calling my children, they must respond with "Ma'am" or "Sir" because that sounds so much better than WHAT? or YEAH? ~shudder~ They tend not to shout when using the sir and ma'am.

3. If asked a yes or no question, then they do respond with a "yes/no ma'am" . Sure, there are times when I let it slip by....but NEVER EVAH in public. If they forget then I remind them and they will use it with me or whatever adult is speaking to them.

4. Saying Thank You is a must. Even when my girls are spitting mad at each other, they have to say Thank You if the other hands them something or does something. Nothing sweeter than hearing it through gritted teeth. My husband brings me something to drink while he's up...I say Thank You. Wonderful little phrase to keep handy.

These are just some I try to follow. If anyone has anymore, please feel free to add on. OH..don't forget phone etiquette. You call my home and Paige'll want to hire her for a front desk job. Kid has FINALLY gotten her groove on with the phone and how to act.

You have to be prepared to practice what you teach. I even respond with a Yes Ma'am to the girls when asked a question. I want them to know I respect them and if it's good enough for me, then it shouldn't be a problem for them. My husband loves to hear good manners and now cringes when he hears kids saying...yeah...or what??? I even have the kids trained that when they run into someone and that person asks "Hello! How are you?", they respond with "Fine, thank you for asking, and how are you?"

So, that's my anal post for the day. Miss Laura, I appreciate you stopping by and hope to see you again! And thanks to Angela and Starbldr for the encouragement. Some days I want to pinch their heads off when they refuse to cooperate! I shall not give up!

Monday, October 17, 2005


Dahlings, I simply must address this issue. I am admittedly from the Deep South and we here acknowledge the dying art of manners. My adorable husband is not from here. That automatically qualifies him as a Yankee. He teases me all the time about how snobbish I am about this. So, I will apologize in advance if I offend someone.

I love manners. I think that when properly used, the respect given will come back and reward you tenfold. My children use them and will be in a load of trouble if they didn't. Do I care if you like them or not? No. My oldest tries to be defiant and not say "Ma'am?" when I call her name. Then, of course, I call her until she answers me correctly. I care not that by then she is standing right in front of me. She once inquired as to why I was such a drill sargent (sp?) about it. I told her that if she used manners on a regular basis until it was a habit, then when she went on the interview of her life in 10-15 years and used them...I would put money on the fact that she would get the job quicker by showing respect. Made sense to her.

My husband was not raised this way. And that's fine. I know the first time I met my mother-in-law, she insisted that I call her by her first name. I declined and said that I couldn't. She insisted that I could. And I replied..."I appreciate the offer but if my Mama heard me call you by your given name, she would skin me alive" I've never called her anything but Mrs. M. Even Fred's father tried to get me to call him by his first name. I couldn't even fathom it. So he is Mr. C. I love when I call my MIL and Fred's brother answers the phone and I ask to speak to Mrs. M. He then says..."Mom, it's Hope...she's the only one who calls you Miss". Bothers me not.

When first visiting Arizona and Mrs. M's family...and whoa..that's alot of family!.....Fred's Aunts tried to the same thing and I simply refused. There are a couple that I have adopted as my own and now call them "Aunt"...but never their given name. While there, one of my kids...can't remember which one.... was running and playing and ran between one of the Aunt's talking to someone. I made her turn around and apologize for running between them. The aunt told me that was not necessary. I stood my ground and insisted that, yes, it was. The next day she apologized to me. Very cool.

It's an ongoing process that never ends. Vitt doesn't talk much but can say "Es mam" when asked a question. He says "Tat tu" 98% of the time when handed something. Fred seemingly likes this process and has agreed to support me in it. He uses it with my parents and totally scores points with it. I pick at him all the time when he's on the phone with his mom and he says.."Yeah." I give him a look and whisper.."it's Yes Ma'am!"

I intend on following this through and will live by a Southern creed:

Manners are the moisturizer of life.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


So she likes boys. That's long as it's from afar. Shall I set up the scene?

We are always on "Dude Alert". No matter where we are, if there are some pimply faced pre-teen or teen boys, she says the word "Dude" under her breath so that I can look also. Why do I want to look? Well, I don't, but I do because she expects me to.

We're driving to counseling today. Busy road in the middle of town. This sporty little red truck whizzes by. We pull up at the redlight and end up right beside this red truck.

Me: Dude to the right. Dude to the right.

~Paige glances and quickly faces forward~

Paige: Dude, that's no dude. That's a DAD.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Crawling Through the Desert

Ever feel like you're crawling through the desert and there's nothing in front of you but sand? Nothing behind you but sand? And your canteen is bone dry? Yeah, me too.

I have been at the single parenting gig for a month straight now. With no break. Reminds me of a song from way back: How long can this go on? I'm okay most of the time but I think I almost jumped over that edge tonight. Just had enough, folks. Let me give you a sample:

  • It rained here last week for 3 days straight. That's cool, we needed the rain. I had lake front property for a day or two there. One thing I forgot. When it rains over 8 inches in less than 72 hours, certain things happen. Ants. They have no where to go but in the house. I have cleaned masses of ants up at least 3 times a day with ant killer followed by a good dose of Clorox cleaner. Wouldn't be so bad if some of them weren't fire ants...something Vitt is potentially allergic to.
  • The past weekend kept me in the house from Friday evening until this morning. Makenna was sick and I am old school in that I believe you need to just stay in the house and get better unless we're going to the doctor. I was getting a bad case of the "stir crazies", people.
  • That boy of mine. If he's not into something he's either dead or asleep. He doesn't sleep alot right now. I've been on midnight shift with him quite a few nights the past week. Makes for a long day.
  • Paige is being Paige. Which means I'm the conductor of a runaway hormonal train and the brakes don't work.

Then there is Grandma. She is very elderly. Still lives on her own. Fiesty as all get out. I have to pick Mak up from school this morning and I call and ask my Grandma to ride with me so she can get out a few. She gladly takes me up on my offer. When I drop her off back at home, I inquire as she's getting out of my van if she needs help? She replies..."I might not be moving by dark tonight, but I am now, so let me do it." Yes ma'am. I laugh and tell her I will leave once she in the house. As she is slowly climbing the steps to her front door, I tell her I will talk to her tomorrow. (I call and check on her daily) (and only once, mind you, or she'll think I'm checking up on her) She turns and says to me..."I know my past but I don't know my future...if I'm here tomorrow, I'll talk to you" She's not being smart-alecky....just wise. Put things in a whole new perspective for me.

I went by that lovely country store to purchase my Makenna some ice cream to help her heal faster. The lady in charge informs me that she has a supply of banana pudding in. OH ho ho. Dish me up one, sister. I had visions of later on in the in and that ice cream being best friends. Here arrives the evening and the smaller ones are snoozing....Horatio is bustin' some butt on CSI: Miami...Paige is bathing with her radio going. Ahhhhhhh....good stuff. Forget "Calgon take me awayyyy". I am slowly eating and savoring every single bite. I am down to half of a cup. Paige walks in and says....Mama, can I have some? Well, crap. I gave her the rest so that she could enjoy too. I'm cool that way.

So much for an oasis. One day. Soon. I will find mine.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

I should have expected this

Now get this. I haven't seen my hubby in 3 weeks. And the way it looks, I won't get to see him until November sometime. Here comes the good part. He has to have some upper GI scope thing done next Friday. He needs someone to go with him as he will be ga-ga when it's over with. ****PICK ME!! PICK ME!!! (frantically waves hand in the air)**** I totally volunteer for this mission. Plans are being made. I'm going up next Thursday evening to accompany him Friday morning. I then will care for him for 24 hours and leave Saturday morning to return home and he will go back to work Saturday evening. Not long at all ...and yes, he will be out of it for the majority of the time...but I don't care! I can touch him! Yes sir, my middle name is Excited right now.

So, I am planning for the weekend. The girls will reside with Mother for the 2.5 days and Vitt shall accompany me. Why? Because no one wants to keep his bad..I mean active tail. 'Sides, he needs to bond a few with Da. I am discussing this with my mother this evening while at her house enjoying supper. Suddenly, the girls jump up and inform me that they have no school next Friday!! Humph, I say, surely you jest? No Mama! they reply, we really don't! And you know what? They're serious. Dangit.

Now the even better part. I was hoping to kinda, maybe honeymoon just a tad (not alot, mind you, just a tad) and here are these two girls breaking out into the song...We're going to Virginia! We're going to Virginia! ~sigh~

Now I am planning for 4 of us to go. They are excited and would pack tomorrow. They haven't seen him in a month. They miss him, too. ~sigh~ How can I say no? I can't.

Good thing the hospital there has a daycare for Vitt to attend while Fred is doing his thing. DVD player for Mak to watch? Check. Big, thick, juicy book for Paige to read? Check. Peace and quiet for Mama? Priceless. (which is probably why it won't happen!)

I am in deep Doo Doo

You know I like to speak of my Mama once in a while. Yeah, well, she's got my blog addy now. I reckon I better go edit all the posts where I talked smack about her.

Maybe the Paxil will give her a sense of humor about it all?

(she is SO gonna kill me for saying that)

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

The Repo-Man

Dude drives around in a tow truck. We all know him. He's the Repo-Man.

Today I drive up at my mom's house. Yes, I know I live next door, but sometimes it's just easier to swing into her driveway. Ok? Ok. Anyway, as I am getting Vitt out of the van, the Repo-Man pulls into the yard. I know the van payment is being made. We have that automatically done. Wait. Not my yard. Crap. Is he coming for the Tahoe? He gets out and grins at me. I do not grin back. He asks if I know who he is? Uh..yeah. He wants to speak with my mom. Crap. I go in the house and tell Mom...the Repo-Man is outside..he wants to speak with you. Her eyes. Priceless. One of those "Need a camera moments". She goes out on the porch and he informs her that someone told him that she knows everyone who is everyone and could she help him find out where this certain person is? She then pats the area where her heart is located. Thing is....she knew she was making the Tahoe payments. I took one myself for her last week. Guys like that just have a way of making your heart skip a beat or two, I suppose. Heck, I know mine did when I saw him. Well, Paige gets into the act, helping him find out where this person is by calling her network of friends. I still have no idea how all of that really went down. Maybe it's better if I don't.

Then get this. If my Mom isn't Southern Genteel to the bone, I'll hush my mouth. Repo-Man had the same surgery as my Mom. They compare war stories. She offers the man a biscuit fresh out of the oven. I kid you not. He politely declines...then asks if it's homemade. But, of course! He starts to waver and she rushes to the kitchen to fix that poor man a biscuit with a piece of fresh-baked ham wedged in the middle. And I am my mother's daughter the bone. I am sitting in the recliner, thumbing through a magazine and I toss over my shoulder..."He has a passenger in his truck with him, Mama, so don't forget him". Two biscuits to go, Repo-Man. He is eternally grateful and I know if ever he needs to visit either one of our addresses (and he won't if I can help it!!).....we won't have a bit of problem. Because, you see, he is beholden now.

God, I love Southern life.