Tuesday, September 29, 2009

She Ain't Right

Is it terrible that it wasn't until tonight that I realized that the title of the song is NOT "Jesu, Joy of Man's Dressing?"

I'm totally serious. I did not realize until tonight that the word was DESIRING, NOT DRESSING. I know.



Obviously, I'm DESIRING some DRESSING.

How many days until Thanksgiving???

Don't ask...Just enjoy this little photo...and if you want some more laughs go to http://www.awkwardfamilyphotos.com/ . Pure photographic genius!

See y'all!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Ode to Joy - Sunday Supper: Edition 20

It has rained here for 18 straight days.


So, what do you do on the first sunny day in almost a month? Oh, and can I also add that it was 75 degrees with no humidity?

Today was an ode to joy. Pure, unadulterated, outdoor joy.

Pond swimming, swinging under an old oak tree, talking with friends...

ball chasing...

duck chasing...

but not duck catching...


And then- as if that weren't enough, I got the house all to myself tonight. So, I watched a girlie movie and ate cheese and crackers for dinner.

The recipe? Buy some cheese, slice it, put it on the cracker of your choice. Now, go and pretend that your house is empty as well. Cut some cheese, grab a diet coke, put in a movie, and feel the joy.

Don't worry- tomorrow I'll put a recipe up, but right now Meg Ryan is waiting on me!

See y'all!


Things have been quiet in the Baird house (health-wise) for the last two weeks! Thankfully, it looks like we are all well for the time being. Hopefully it will stay that way.

Last week we found out that we are definately having a girl. I was so excited. Now, if we can just get her here :) It seems like it is going to take forever..... We have also picked a name - Alexis Grace.

This week should hopefully be a little quite. Nothing major planned, and nothing really exciting going on at work. Let's just hope we make it through the week with no phone calls for sick kids.

One week from Wed, we will be going out of town - to the Mountains. I get to buy some "Dolly" dresses for the new baby, and for Kaitlyn too. I can't wait!! :) This will be our 1st family vacation. The kids will be joining us, along with my sister, brother-in-law, and mom. We have not been on a family vacation EVER. Kaitlyn is very excited, because we will be in the mountains for her birthday. Little does she know that means she won't have a birthday party, but we will do something there with just us to celebrate. Nice to be off the hook for birthday party this year :)

Friday, September 25, 2009

There's Life to Be Learned in a Butt Whoopin'

Those were wise words from my grandfather when we were arguing over Andy Kelly.



Andy Kelly was the quarterback at Tennessee when I enrolled in 1989.

There has never been a more overrated player in football. (Nice guy though.)

He was one of those guys that looked good on paper. He had good stats, and he got really lucky against Notre Dame once. Other than that, he was mediocre at best.

After a particularly impressive Tennessee loss I made it a point to go by Buddy and Grandaddy's house, invade the freezer, and pick an argument with Grandaddy.

I was thoughtful that way.

I pushed his angry button, and got him going in about .3 seconds. We went back and forth, and I'm pretty sure I ended up telling him that he could say whatever he wanted about Andy Kelly's stats and talent and rankings and so on, the fact of the matter was they got a good old fashioned butt whippin,' and it was all Andy Kelly's fault.

And all Grandaddy said was "there's a lot of life to be learned in a butt whoopin'."

And I'm praying I restrained myself enough not to retort, "Yeah right, that's just what people say when they get beat like a gas station dog." BUT- if I had to guess, I'd say self-control and restraint probably failed me.


We had our BIG game last night. We lost BIG.

We are the gas station dog.

If I could ask Grandaddy what life there is to be learned in this particular butt whoopin', I wonder what he'd say.

Here's what I think; I think he'd say this is where we realize that if we don't like the story we can always rewrite it. We can change the plot, we can change the characters, we can change the dialogue, and we can change the tone.

The point is, every story can be rewritten. EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.

And he'd probably say a butt whoopin is an impressive reminder that the score isn't the purpose of the game- never has been. The game was NEVER about the numbers. (Coach's head just exploded as I wrote this)

And he'd say that only when you've been beaten badly and you've known decisive defeat can you begin to understand the importance of extending graciousness to an opponent regardless of whether you win or lose.

And finally, I know he'd say (through gritted teeth, mind you) that you learn resolve. You resolve not to EVER get beat like that again.

You re-evaluate your goals and your plans, and you start to write the new story.

It's time for a new story guys- get mad and start drafting that thing.

See y'all!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Big game coming up Friday.



Actually we play my alma mater. It also happens to be the school that Coach and I were teaching at when we met, and it's the school that splintered from our current school back in 1969.

Oh, and they are a football dynasty. Legendary.

There's history.

So you can imagine what life is like here at the Momsense abode.

Coach has worked himself into a laundry and dustbusting frenzy.

It's bad.

Real bad.

Matter of fact, if it doesn't let up soon I fear that we'll all start to resemble this happy bunch...

See y'all!


ATTN: Surveillance Department
Subject: Landaker Family 092009
The subject's surveillance equipment has been damaged due to high-frequency screaming, collisions with plush toys, and EMF interference from electronic devices.  We were still able to extract some data; below are the surveillance portions that survived the equipment damage.

Sapphire: Da da na na ma ma! ::claps hands::

Onyx: This is a little bit dangerous. ::stands up on swing::

Quartz: I think I'm getting a little bit used to preschool.

Wes: Sylar is awesome.

Andrea: Good job eating real food!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Mini Laughs

Well, you know we're surrounded by mini-people. That's why we always look so tired and genuinely surprised to still be alive.

Any one of the many minis is enough to drain the energy reserves- top that off with a husband who's OCD and finds it necessary to sweep and dustbust the house three dozen times a day, and we're one sandwich short of a picnic.

But, occasionally they will do or say things that are just plain funny. This week there have been a few. Enjoy!

Last Sunday we met Coach's sister's family for lunch. We walked around the little town after lunch and window shopped, went in an art gallery, and finished with a candy store. I sat down on a bench outside of the general store and my niece sat down next to me.

"Whew, these heels are killing me." she said.

She's six.

Then AC informed me the next day that she "wasn't feeling herself. She might need to take an aspirin and go to bed."

It was six o'clock.

G was even more melancholy than is normal for an angst-ridden adolescent. I asked him what his deal was and he replied "I just don't bounce back like I did when I was younger."

He's 13.

And possibly my favorite- today I had the remaining two stitches removed from the hind end. And I had a flu shot. But- the good news? I got the okay on resuming my evening baths. Thank you sweet Jesus.

AC was with me for the appointment. When we left she said, "Are you so excited that you can take baths again?"

Me: "Yes- you have no idea."

AC: "You know what I'm going to do for you mother? (She uses "mother" for special emphasis.) We'll celebrate- I'll let you take your bath in peace, and I won't interrupt you once to ask you a question."

Told you...

We're living the dream.

See y'all!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sunday Supper: Edition 19

Well, we're on the last of the month long birthday celebrations. We have skated, cooked hamburgers, gone to UT games, eaten more Tex-Mex than we can talk about, seen movies, opened presents, taken Target runs to redeem gift cards, uploaded pictures from the new cameras, and on and on and on.

I love birthdays. They are my favorite. (Well, except for Christmas and Halloween- I love those too.)

Anyway, G asked for his favorite dinner tonight which is roast, gravy, mashed potatoes, broccoli casserole, yeast rolls, and of course, cake and ice cream.

Since the pot roast is so easy (buy a chuck roast- put salt, pepper, and granulated garlic on both sides and put in a crock pot on low for 6 hours), I figured I would post the recipes from the dinner I made for my mom and her friends. And let me say- if you have a mom like mine who is impossible to buy for- I highly recommend giving her a dinner- invite her friends, and cook yourself silly. They are all STILL talking about it.

So here goes:

Salad w/ Balsamic Vinaigrette
Baby lettuce
Rinsed and dried spinach
1 pt. strawberries sliced
Toasted almonds
Parmesan cheese shavings
Balsamic Vinaigrette

Mix lettuce and spinach together. Place on plates or in bowls. Top with strawberries, almonds, and parmesan cheese. You can also add craisins and/or mandarin oranges if you like.

Balsamic Vinaigrette
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tbsp. dijon mustard
3 tbsp. honey
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 small shallots, minced
pinch salt
pinch pepper
3/4 to 1 cup of olive oil

Put first 7 ingredients in food processor and blend. Gradually add olive oil until all is blended. Yields 2 cups.

Chicken Pastry Bundles
1 lb. chicken breasts
3/4 tsp. garlic salt
2 tbsp. butter
2 shallots, chopped
1 small onion - chopped
2 cups sliced mushrooms
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 tbsp. milk
2 tbsp. dry sherry
2-3 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
pinch salt
pinch pepper
2 pkgs. frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed
12 swiss cheese slices
12 thin sliced country ham slices
1 egg white beaten slightly
1/2 cup melted butter
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
1 tsp. poppy seeds
1 tsp. lemon juice

Sprinkle chicken with garlic salt and cook in a lightly greased nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until browned on both sides. Remove from skillet, chop, set aside.
Melt 2 tbsp. butter in skilled; add shallots and onion, saute for 3 minutes. Add mushrooms, saute 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low; add cream cheese and milk, stirring until blended. Remove from heat, add chopped chicken. Stir in sherry and next 3 ingredients.
Unfold 3 pastry sheets on a lightly floured surface; cut into fourths. Roll each into a 10-inch square. Place 1 slice ham and 1 slice of cheese in center of each puff pastry square. Top evenly with chicken mixture (about 1/3 cup). Bring corners together, twist to seal.
Cut remaining pastry sheet into thin strips; tie each bundle with the strips. Set on a parchment lined baking sheet. Brush with egg white.
Bake at 400 for 35 minutes or until golden. Whisk together melted butter and remaining ingredients. Serve over pastry bundles.

Baked Mushroom Rice
2 tbsp. butter
5 green onions
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup dry sherry
1 4.5 oz. jar sliced mushrooms UNDRAINED
1 4 oz. jar pimiento DRAINED
3/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
2 cups uncooked long-grain rice

Melt butter in a large skillet; add green onions and next 6 ingredients. Bring to a boil; remove from heat, and add rice. Spoon into a greased 13x9 baking dish. Cover and bake at 375 for 25 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Stir before serving.

Green Beans w/ Caramelized Onions
2 lbs. fresh green beans
2 large sweet onions
3 tbsp. butter, divided
3 tbsp. light brown sugar
1 1/2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

Trim beans. Cook beans in boiling water to cover 12 to 15 minutes or until tender. Drain and set aside, or cover and chill overnight if desired.

Meanwhile, cut onions into thin slices, and cut each slice in half. Melt 1 tbsp. butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat- add onion and cook 8-10 minutes. (Do NOT stir) Continue cooking onion, stirring often another 15-20 minutes or until golden. Reduce heat to medium, stir in remaining 2 tbsp. butter and brown sugar.

Add green beans, and cook 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Add vinegar; toss to coat.
Serves 8.

And dessert- this is not what I made the ladies. I made them a citrus-poppy seed cake with cream-cheese frosting and a lemon glaze. BUT- since we're heading into fall, I figured something more hearty would be better, and I will admit that this particular recipe has been used on more than one occasion to blackmail unsuspecting friends (oh, I kid- but it is a pretty darn persuasive dish)

Tiramisu Toffee Trifle Pie
1 1/2 tbsp instant coffee granules
3/4 cup warm water
1 (16 oz frozen pound cake)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup plus 2 tbsp. powdered sugar, divided
1/2 cup chocolate syrup
4 cups whipping cream
2 Heath bars, coarsely chopped

Stir together coffee and warm water in a bowl until granules dissolve. Cool.

Cut frozen pound cake into 16 slices; arrange evenly on bottom and up sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Brush coffee evenly over cake.

Beat cream cheese, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, and chocolate syrup at medium speed with electric mixer until smooth.

Beat whipping cream in a large bowl at high speed until foamy; gradually add 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp. powdered sugar, beating until soft peaks form.

Gradually fold 5 cups whipping cream into cream cheese mixture, reserving remaining whipped cream. Pour filling over cake slices in pan. Sprinkle heath bars over pie. Pipe remaining whipped cream around edge of pie.
Freeze 8 hours or until firm.

Now- go take a nap!

See y'all!

End of Summer Wrap-up

Lots of pictures today -- we've been ending the summer with lots of fun stuff, like playing in the backyard.

We signed the boys up for Prehistoric Preschool at the NM Museum of Natural History (aka The Dinosaur Museum).  Quartz was skeptical, but the boys actually like it a lot.  They do a variety of activities, and they are learning some things about dinosaurs I didn't know.  It's on Saturdays, so Wes can come too.  Here he is making dinosaurs out of pretzels.  The boys thought this was hilarious.

We finally made it to Cliff's, our local amuseument park -- we'd been planning to go all summer (and had already bought tickets from Costco), but kept being busy with building the playset, going on trips, etc.  It was a really fun trip.  Cliff's is small enough that you don't have to walk forever and there were no lines and it wasn't too expensive, but big enough that there was plenty to do.

I also really enjoyed that, since it's in the middle of town, it was easy to leave for dinner, some better shoes for Wes, and a short nap for the kids in the car, and then come back for more fun.

I was worried that the kids were going to be throwing fits and that it would be stressful, but everyone had a great time.  Sapphire hung out in the stroller and rode around on the Mom-O-Ride, Onyx tried everything but didn't like anything with a steep drop or really fast speed, Quartz bounced up and down and was so excited about riding the roller coaster and the log ride and the water slides, and Wes and I took turns riding with Quartz and hanging out together.

We plan on going to Lego Land next year; I think this bodes well for future amusement park excursions.

Finally, no post would be complete without a cute picture of Sapphire, so here she is.  She crawls all over the house, can stand up on her own, and likes to eat prickly pear jello and zuchinni.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Woman Thou Art Loosed...Almost

I have a wild rebellious streak and a need for conformity that are wound together like hair in a braid.

I have religiously washed the wound, covered it in Neosporin, and dressed it just as I was instructed. Twice a day every day.

But it's my rebellious side that caused me, at the very moment that the stitches were sewn into my rear-end, to have an inexplicable urge to ride bicycles and run marathons- two things I haven't done in a looooooooooong while. Two things I was told told NOT to do, and generally two things that I don't give much thought to...unless instructed otherwise.

Then it's all I can think about, and I pout and complain about how nice it would be to be able to take a bike ride around Franklin, but noooooooooooo I can't because I have stitches, and now I have to wait 12 whole days to go bike riding. And I really miss the bike riding; it's been two...years since my last ride which subsequently almost ended with AC and I being eaten by an alligator in the dark in a swamp in South Carolina.

You can see why I miss it.

And, I actually became so nostalgic over running that I was coerced in a matter of about 11 seconds OVER E-MAIL to run a half marathon...in Memphis...in December. And I was feeling so rebellious that not only did I commit by registering and paying my $55 registration fee...I was feeling just crazy enough to request a t-shirt a size smaller than normal, because I figure, if I'm feeling ambitious, I might as well throw an unrealistic weight-loss goal in there too.

You would think I would have learned my lesson the first time.

Anyway, I went to have the stitches removed today, and I was all pumped about all the running and bike riding I was going to do today when I made it home.

They removed all but two of the stitches. Turns out the "chewed up part" is still pretty chewed up.

So now I'm down to two stitches and some steri-strips. I asked if I could bike ride, run, and walk. I mean, realistically, none of the three things were going to happen, but I thought I'd ask.

She made a funny face, said you can definitely walk, probably run, riding a bike is "iffy" that I should just "feel it out" and see how it goes.

And then she threw down the gauntlet...

She said..."Just whatever you do, don't do any sort of weight bearing exercises, squats, or anything that requires a lot of bending over."

So now, I'm sooooooo over wanting to bike ride and run, but have an uncontrollable urge to throw Jillian Michaels in the DVD player and squat myself silly.

And on a side note, or I guess you'd say, a rear note, the boy came home from his extreme camping trip and spent the better part of 15 minutes demonstrating the 6 different positions he was taught to poop in the woods...positions with names like "the tripod," "the crab," and "the Dukes of Hazard."



Which then led to an explanation of how they were instructed to "army wipe" (I'll spare you the details here, just suffice it to say that wiping with leaves was a much more acceptable alternative). And that little discussion ended with G telling me that he really prefers the Rhododendron leaf to any of the other leaves when it comes to natural toilet paper.

Information I have stored away for when Hell freezes over and I end up in an extreme camping situation.

Now, I really must go - Jillian is waiting for me; seems there are some squats to be done.

See y'all!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Does it ever end????

Oh the joys of parenthood, attempting to hold down a full-time job, and being a mother :). Last week I only made it to work 1 1/2 days out of 4 (Monday was a holiday). Tyler was still sick - not with "hand, foot, mouth" because he didn't ACTUALLY have that, but Monday night started diarrea. I was hoping that Tuesday morning he would be fine, so we sent him to school (don't most parents send their kids to school knowing good and well they might be a little under the weather but hope they don't get a call from school, or is that just me?? - please don't judge me :) ) I received 2 phone calls before 12 on Tuesday that he had 3 wet diarrea diapers. Good times. So, I picked him up and took the rest of the day off. My plan was just to work an extra hour Wed-Friday to make up for it, so I went to work on Wednesday. I pulled a 10.5 hour day - was plum exhausted, only to come home to an even more sick little boy. The diarrea had not gotten better, he was not eating very well, drinking some what o.k., but started to get a bad cough and congestion. Thursday I took the day off and had to take him to the dr. What does the dr. do?!?!? Tell me it's a virus, give me cough meds (with steriods) for the cough, alergy meds for the congestion, diaper cream for the major diaper rash, and send me on my merry little way. I thought after 3 days of diarrea, they start on anti-biotics. He said it was a virus, but I thought they give anti-biotics regardless after 3 days.....I sware, I could be a pediatrician.

We survived the weekend and even though he's not back 100%, he's almost there.....

Now, here's the fun part. My husband gets a phone call around 5:15 that Kaitlyn has a 101.6 fever!!! What does that mean??? We have to keep her out of school at least through tomorrow and hope the fever breaks by then and she is o.k. Even worse, she has a very nasty cough. Since she is going to be out tomorrow, I am going to call in the morning to see if I can get her into the dr. and go a head and start meds for whatever the heck she might have as quickly as possible. What has me even more worried is a few people that work with me (not at my center, but within my company in other states/cities) have the Swine Flu - one girl that used to work for my husband as well. They said it either started as bronchitis, or it turned into brochitis. Her cough has me worried she might end up with swine flu...... Paranoid....

Well, let's just hope I don't get sick. It' can't be good (if she has the swine flu) to pass that on to a pregnant person....... I maybe thinking into this too much.... I will stop stressing....

Sunday, September 13, 2009

How About Some Sunday Supper: Edition 18

After a summer hiatus Sunday Supper is back. Who knew people were actually depending on it for meal ideas? Anyway, for all of you who sent me e-mails- here you go.

So there was no Sunday Supper tonight. I know. I KNOW. Bummer right?

Turns out, the boy, who is 13 today, (WE HAVE A REAL LIVE TEENAGER IN THE HOUSE!!!) is leaving in the morning for Adventure Treks.

Otherwise known as the fourth circle of Hell. It is extreme camping- the kind where you sleep under bushes, poop in the ground, and eat twigs and berries for sustenance... the kind I simply don't do.

The entire 7th grade is going...boys and GIRLS. Can you even imagine the nightmare? No running water and approximately fifty 12-13 year-old girls?

Told you. 4th Circle of Hell.

They do it so that the kids will develop a little machismo, a little mental toughness, and it's my personal opinion that they try to weed out the weak ones in some kind of twisted Darwinian experiment, but so far they haven't lost one.

I'm all for it. I think that kids need to be put in situations that are relatively controlled, but totally uncomfortable. It teaches all sorts of life skills that teach resilience and mental toughness, and best of all...

I don't have to go.

And before you call me a wimp, let me remind you that just 7 days ago I ripped my rear end in half, nearly bled to death, humiliated myself in a small mountain hospital, and then had to ride on the sewn up rump for three hours back to Nashville.

I think I've got resilience and mental toughness covered for a while, not to mention humility, idiocy, and athletic prowess.

Anyway, he's not here, nor is anyone else. So for dinner tonight I had cheddar cheese, saltine crackers, and a diet coke. I know...an epicurean delight.

But yesterday. Mmmmm mmmm mmmm. We watched football and I made King Ranch Chicken. And I meant to make frozen fruit salad, but forgot in all the UT Vol frenzy...I know- don't go there.

So, here you go...

King Ranch Chicken

1 large onion, chopped
1 large bell pepper, chopped
2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
2 cups of chopped cooked chicken
1 can cream of chicken soup (I use 98% fat free)
1 can cream of mushroom soup (again, 98% fat free)
1 can rotel tomatoes and peppers
chili powder (to taste)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Tortilla chips
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
Saute onion and pepper in oil over medium high heat for 5 minutes until tender. Stir in chicken and next 7 ingredients; remove from heat.
Crush tortilla chips; cover the bottom of a 13x9 baking dish with tortilla chips. Top with 1/2 of chicken mixture and 1/2 cheese. Repeat the layers again.
Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes until cheese is bubbling.
Freezes well. But don't worry, there won't be any left. I swear.

Frozen Fruit Salad

1 16 oz. can cherry pie filling
1 14 oz. can crushed pineapple
1 14 oz. can condensed milk
1 13 oz. carton of whipped topping

Mix all ingredients. Freeze in a 9 x 13 pan. Cut into squares. Garnish with strawberries.

Enjoy! I'm going to use the indoor plumbing and climb in a big, warm bed!

See y'all!

Friday, September 11, 2009


8 years later and the feelings are still raw.

Maybe it's because I was in a classroom of innocent children. 12-year-olds. The ones who are trying so hard to become independent and don't want anything to do with their parents...

until that day.

On that day they cried and they were immediately terrorized by strangers who had planned a sinister attack on a city far away from where we were, but it might as well have happened in the back yard.

On that day they cried for their parents. And life has been a little bit different ever since.

And today we remember. And we should be thankful for what wasn't taken away that day, thankful for lessons learned, thankful for the legacies of the lives we lost, thankful for patriotism, thankful for a President who led us through the rubble with encouragment and dignity, and thankful that we have a new day.

And most of all, thankful for a God who will settle the score in his own sweet time.

Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when men succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. For evil men will be cut off, but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land. A little while, and the wicked will be no more; though you look for them, they will not be found.
-Psalm 37:7-10

See y'all!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

You'uns Got Some Pretty Teeth

That I even know the above phrase qualifies me to use it.

Before anyone gets offended, let it be known, that my family has been known to have reunions at rest-stops on the side of the interstate, and bring their pet snakes in a cooler with their Pabst Blue Ribbon to the country club.

Oh yes, I know good country people. And I appreciate them.

After my unfortunate buttocks tear on Sunday, I appreciate them even more.



The butt story can only be concluded by telling you all about the hospital trip.

Picture it. I am dressed in a t-shirt and bloody, wet sandals.

That's all.

No pants.

Coach insisted that pants would be ruined; so I traveled from the mountains to Blount County Hospital with a bath towel between my legs sort of like an unfastened diaper and a beach towel wrapped around my waist.

Okay, math lesson. I have two hands. It took one hand to apply pressure to the crevasse (oh the puns are uncanny aren't' they? Get it uncanny? Ha ha ha. Nothing like being the butt of all the jokes. Okay, I know, enough, I'll stop.) that I ripped in my rear. Another hand to hold the beach towel around my waist. And yet another hand to hold the towel that was between my legs to catch all the blood and stuff.

Coach pulls up to the doors of the waiting room, I tried to get out holding two different towels and the wound. I started to lose the towel until...

Crocodile Dundee showed up with a wheel chair. How odd to find someone with an Australian accent in the mountains of Tennessee.

Except that it wasn't an Australian accent. Turns out it was the thickest Tennessee mountain dialect I know I've EVER heard.

After he commented on how pretty my teeth and skin were he asked me what I had done.

Me: "Icutmybuttopenonarockinariverinthemountains."

Him: Laughs. Laughs again. Oh don't worry...laugh, laugh, laugh...people do it all the time...laugh, laugh, laugh. You 21?

Me: (smiling) Me? No, I'm not 21 you sweet thing. (Actually not what I said because I do believe I was in shock- actually all I said was "no, I did this completely sober.")

Him: How big is the cut?

Me: Don't know, don't want to know. (At this point Coach gets behind me to tell the man-nurse using hand gestures and distorted facial expressions that it's really big- and I pretend to be oblivious. I continue to pray that my denial of the situation will heal it. No luck.)

Him: Let's take a look.

Me: Yeah right.

Him: Seriously, I'm a nurse and a volunteer fireman.

Me: Now bolstered with more confidence in the medical profession than ever, I tell him: "NO MATTER WHAT, just tell me it's not that bad."

Him: "Oh, it's not that bad." Then he passed out.

Oh I kid. But he wanted to, and then he disappeared never to be seen again until the second male nurse came in to actually stitch me up.

And I must ask- where on earth are all the female nurses? Because I am not even a little bit happy that I had to bare my butt to not one, but two male nurses.

Enter man-nurse #2. I am face down on a gurney. He lifts up the blanket and towel and gasps. "HOLY COW! What did you do?"

Me: "You are supposed to say it's not that bad."

Him: "How bout I tell you I think I can fix it?" Did you catch the "THINK" in that statement?

Me: "How bout I tell you where to stick it?" Again, I kid, but my patience was growing thin.

Man nurse commenced to begin sticking and sewing all the while talking to Coach about ATV's and bow-hunting elk or antelope or something in New Mexico or Alabama- I really don't know.

What I do know is this: if I ever find myself in a situation that has me sitting with Coach in the emergency room while he needs medical attention, you can darn sure bet that I am going to find myself a female nurse and talk myself into a frenzy over the pros and cons of the empire waisted dress, and maybe enter into a debate over whether or not to buy brown boots or black? And do I want suede or leather because I mean really.... REALLY...talking about bow hunting while a strange man sews up your wife's arse? SERIOUSLY!!!!

I dared to interrupt. "How much longer?"

Nurse man replied "Not much longer, I'm just trying to figure out a way to sew up the chewed up part without leaving you a nice scar." (Yes, he really did say "chewed up part")

Me: "My wearing a thong in public days are over, I'm not so worried about a scar, let's just move along." (Note: my wearing a thong in public days NEVER started- I generally keep my bottom to myself.)

So Man Nurse finished, a couple of orderlies had a good laugh while they dressed the wound, thus taking the count of strangers who saw my rear end to about 75, and I got my pain medicine, surgical pads, and antibiotics and ran...to the car...where I had to sit on my newly sewn-up rear for 3 hours on the drive home.

And the rest, my friends, will be recorded in the annals of history. (Sooooo sorry for that one, BUTT I just couldn't resist)

See y'all!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Home again.....

Well, I thought with the long weekend that it would help kick any illness that Tyler may or may not have so that we could return back to school/work. We were fine all weekend long, spent Sunday at the pool and just had a great weekend.... Well, until yesterday. Tyler did not really want to take a nap yesterday...kept waking up and whining every 45 minutes. He started to get a little bit of a fever yesterday and we saw that he is cutting teeth. FUN TIMES!!!! Not long before bed he had a "blow out" so I knew he was not feeling well. This morning he woke up with a loose diaper, but it was not the "blow out" from the night before. He was a little cranky this morning, but I gave him some motrin and sent him to school. I guess I was hoping we could drug him up enough that he would be o.k.

I receved 2 phone calls from the school before noon. They decided to watch his diapers after he had 2 "blow outs" because they knew he was teething. She told me 1 more and he would have to go home. Not even a hour later they called me back......UGGG....

These are the times that you really feel like a "mom." Taking care of sick kids, and trying to figure out how to help them feel better. Do you medicate, do you not. What kind of medicine do you give them? Do you let them have milk or juice? Maybe Sprite?? But is the soda bad for a 2 year old?? Don't we drink Sprite when we have an upset stomach??? I know my son tends to have loose diapers when he drinks juice, regardless of whether he is sick or not. Milk is not supposed to be good on an upset stomach.

I never call out sick, especially for my kids. I have been blessed that they do not get sick that often, or if they do, it's on the weekends. It really stinks that I had to take all day Friday off, we had the long weekend, and now I have to take 1/2 day off today. I feel bad, but what can I do? These are my kids, and if I have to take time off because they are sick, then that is what I have to do.

My last job, if they were sick, I just went across the street to pick them up, and brought them back to work with me. Unfortunately, I can not do that at this job. Luckily, I get paid time off. The only bad thing is, I am trying to save every ounce of it up so that I can stay home as long as I can when I have the new baby. Guess we will cross that hurdle when it comes.

So, hopefully Tyler will be much better tomorrow, and he can go back to school after lunch. My husband is supposed to stay home tomorrow with him, but we will see if that really happens. Let's just hope we get past this hurdle and will be nice and well from here on out!!!

Monday, September 7, 2009

The River Wild or How Baby Has A Little Less Back Than She Used To

It's Football Time In Tennessee!!! Thank God. Seriously, go right now and thank Him.

If you've never had the pleasure of going to a season opener in Tennessee, let me help you imagine the magic. First, you must park and walk...and walk...and walk. Which never bothered me before, but the addition of three children, one of which was far more concerned with her gameday fashion than the actual game (she will be hands down, the best sorority sister EVER), made the walk a little longer...and hotter.

But- I have to hand it to the girl, she can accessorize with the best of them. And so we walked.

And climbed, to the very tip-top of Neyland Stadium where we sat in the noonday sun and sizzled like bacon. BUT, we had a ball before we were all struck with the delerium of dehydration.

We Vol Walked, we sang Rocky Top, we jumped for joy, we inhaled the aroma of body odor and whiskey, we toured the campus, we people watched, we drank $50 worth of bottled water, and we talked with much fervor about our river tubing adventure that would take place on Sunday.

And this is where I need to stop for a minte. Apparently there is a point in planning a family trip that the responsible adults need to know when enough is enough. Because really, there is only so much fun that can be had in a period of 48 hours.

"Enough" is a word we have not familiarized ourselves with...yet.

And apparently in the Momsense economy "enough" isn't enough until someone ends up in the emergency room.

Oh sure.

After insisting on leaving the family run on the river tubing adventure because it was "weak" in the words of the kids, we ventured onto the "Adventure" run. The Adventure Run has an age limit...you have to be 5. Hardly adventurous.

Basically you sit in an inner tube, float down the river a couple of miles, encounter three sets of rapids, get out, and do it all over again.

Which we did.

3 times.

It was the third time that got me. Coach and I had been floating down the river talking about wanting the kids to have more outdoor experiences...not being soft...being at one with nature.

And he almost...ALMOST had me convinced that a pop-up camper would be a good idea.


Until there was a freak rapid riding accident that left me stranded on a rock in the middle of a rapid without my float.

I won't give you the blow by blow, the very short story is this: floating calmly, entered rapids, assumed the position which Coach assured me would give me the ride of my life; was having the ride of my life until I realized I was under water without a float; got up, fell down, flailed about like a beetle on its back; realized I should to find a stable place to sit and wait for friend and her 5 year old daughter to come down on their tubes and I could hitch a ride.

But wait; there is a hitch in my plan.

Along with said friend and 5 year old girl, is friend's husband, who it seems, is also having the ride of his life.


the ride of his life ended when it collided with the remnants of the ride of my life, and we both ended up floatless and flailing like beetles on our backs... in front of the gallery of people that had assembled on the banks by the campground.

During the collision I felt a searing pain in my left hind end part; stood up, saw no blood and went on about floating the next half mile or so down to the end.

At that point the hind end was stinging a bit; I met back up with Coach and the kids who were jumping off rocks into the river all unscathed and giddy.

I told Coach I thought I might have cut my butt (sorry, couldn't avoid the rhyme).

And I arose from the water. And the blood?

It was a flowin'

Down both legs and into my shoes.

Coach ran over, pulled my swim bottoms out a bit, made a weird noise and said: "let's go we're going to the hospital."

Which is funny since I had just decided that regardless of the wound, I was NOT going to the hospital with a butt wound.

Then there was talk of going into shock and the four children all walking behind me gasping and screeching about how I'm bleeding to death, and of course, there was the blood. We had to do something to stop the blood.

So, I was usurped and we had to go to the hospital so that I could get my rear-end sewn up, which is another story altogether, one that will have to wait until tomorrow because frankly, I just can't sit very long these days. So, stay tuned because things didn't get remotely funny until we made it to the sweet little rural hospital.

But seriously, or should I say "Butt seriously," how ironic is it that I was wearing a t-shirt that boldly professed that "I Bleed Orange" which subsequently ended up covered in what could only be described as Alabama Crimson.


See y'all!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Paper Bag Pinata

My mom sent some of our toys from when we were kids -- my kids are really enjoying them.  I think the binoculars were Joshua's, and the Beanie Babies were Rachel's. 
Everyone else has started school, but preschool hasn't started yet, so we get a few more weeks of summer.  Quartz really misses his friends who are now in kindergarten and don't have time to play.  But, he and Onyx have really gotten good at playing together without too much arguing.  Quartz made sure to invite Onyx to his birthday party, "because he's my favorite friend."
Sapphire likes to babble and crawl!  She explores the whole house, and takes apart everything she can reach (much to the dismay of the boys and their LEGO creations, puzzles, and train tracks).  Onyx thinks she is talking to him, so we often hear exchanges like this:
Sapphire: Ahhhhh, da, da, da, da.
Onyx: I'm not a da da da, you're a da da da!
Sapphire: Da da da da
Onyx: Stop calling me that!

Quartz is now 5!  I was having so much fun at his party that I forgot to take pictures.  They decorated a paper bag with robot stickers to make it into a pinata (note to self: double-bagging is too sturdy for a paper bag pinata; use a single paper bag).  Wes made a treasure hunt with clues for them to follow, which they thought was pretty fun once they figured out what it was.  They played with squirt guns and on the play set, and we had cake.  Quartz asked for kiwi strawberry cake, so here's the Strawberry Cake and the Kiwi Frosting.  It turned out pretty good, though it was definitely a unique taste!  It's also the only thing I managed to take a picture of.  :-)

Onyx is still not interested in potty training.  I'm trying to decide how long I'll wait before I just say, "The diapers will be gone in one week" and try that.  But I'm not sure he has the skillz for that yet.  :-/

Friday, September 4, 2009

Do pediatricians really know what they are talking about???

I often wonder if pediatricians really do know what they are doing, or are they just guessing so that they give you some kind of diagnosis??

Yesterday I received a call from the daycare that my son was breaking out in some sort of bumps or rash on his face. So, of course, I have to go pick him up from school and take him to the doctor. He was acting completely fine, other than the fact that he had a few bumps on the bridge of his nose, and they were starting to appear around his nose (he has a really runny nose as well). He also had a few around his chin/cheek, but he has been drooling a lot too.

So, we take him to the doctor and wait....and wait...and wait...and wait some more. Then the doctor finally came in. My kids were playing on the floor (hide and go seek and a few other games) when he came in. I of course had to take Tyler so that the doctor could look at him. His immdediate response was "hand, foot, mouth".

What is hand foot mouth you may ask??? Well this is what Web MD says....

"Hand-foot-and-mouth disease is a common childhood illness. It causes sores in the mouth and on the hands, feet, and sometimes the buttocks and legs. Mouth sores can be painful and may make it hard for your child to eat. The disease is not serious, and it usually goes away in a week or so.
It can occur at any time of year, but hand-foot-and-mouth disease is most common in the summer and fall.

What causes hand-foot-and-mouth disease?

Hand-foot-and-mouth disease is caused by a virus called an enterovirus.
The virus spreads easily through coughing and sneezing. You can also get it by coming in contact with infected stool, such as when you change a diaper. Often the disease breaks out within a community. Children are most likely to spread the disease during the first week of the illness. But the virus stays in the stool and can sometimes spread to others for several months after the blisters and sores have healed.
It usually takes 3 to 6 days for a person to get symptoms of hand-foot-and-mouth disease after being exposed to the virus. This is called the incubation period.

What are the symptoms?

At first your child may feel tired, get a sore throat, or have a fever of around 101F to 103F. Then in a day or two, your child may get sores or blisters on the hands, feet, mouth, and sometimes the buttocks. In some cases a child will get a skin rash before the blisters appear. The blisters may break open and crust over. The sores and blisters usually go away in a week or so.

How is hand-foot-and-mouth disease diagnosed?

A doctor can tell if your child has hand-foot-and-mouth disease by the symptoms you describe and by looking at the sores and blisters. "

O.k. lets just 1st state that I have not listed any of those "problem areas" as any of where he has his "bumps." The doctor picked up his hands and because they were slightly red, tried to say that he had it on his hands (one of the places you get it). I wanted to say "Are you kidding me??? Did you not notice that they were crawling on the floor when you came in?? No wonder he has red hands!!!" I think they just pick an illness and try to diagnos every kid that comes in with the same thing.

The symptoms also state that you start out with a fever before the blisters/bumps start to appear. My son has not had a fever AT ALL in I don't know how long. He has nothing inside of his mouth, does not have any trouble eating, and the "rash" he did have on his lower abdomen (diaper area) yesterday tured out to be diaper rash (my assumption since I put diaper rash cream on it last night and it was gone before bed time, and still not visable today).

This makes me wonder if pediatricians really do know what is wrong with our kids. Once again, I think they just pick something so they feel good about sending you home. That pediatrician did not ask me many questions, looked and him and just said "this is what he has....."

So, needless to say I am home with both kids today. Oh and get this, I had to call MY doctor to make sure I was o.k., because of their diagnosis. I had to go yesterday to have blood drawn so they could make sure I didn't have it and was fine. Still waiting on the results. Thank God we have a long weekend a head of us. I took the day off today too because I am exhausted, especially after running around yesterday, then having to work late to make up for the extra long lunch break I had to take. I wasn't feeling 100% this morning either....just light headed and dizzy. I'm sure I will be fine. Just frustrated............

Dippity-Doo Dah, Dippity-Day It's Football Time!!!

It's football time in Tennessee!!!

The heavens have opened and God has smiled upon the land.

The Momsense clan will take in not one, but TWO football games in a period of 24 hours!

Tonight we head to Chattanooga to watch our Wildcats take on Baylor in what we're hoping will be a 3-peat win. Then we'll drive to a cabin in the mountains where we will get approximately 22 minutes of sleep before we get up and head into Knoxville for...


There will be elations of symphonic joy. Angels will sing, trumpets will sound...

It's finally here...

Fall, in all its glory doesn't officially start until the SEC teams swing into gear, and Saturday, they'll be swingin'

So for all of you fans- enjoy your traditions and teams this weekend, and if you're not actually in a stadium, pick some dips from here and on BooMama's Diptacular, and eat yourself into a Velveeta and Rotel coma.

Football Dip
1 lb of Velveeta chopped into 1 inch cubes
1 can Rotel
1 lb. hot sausage
1 lb. regular sausage
4 oz. beer (use good stuff if you have it)
Cayenne Pepper (to taste

Brown the two pounds of sausage and put in a slow-cooker with the remaining ingredients and cook on low until the cheese melts or all day long... Eat with chips...or a spoon. Add more beer if you want a thinner dip.

Dragon Food (not a dip, but a football staple at our house - got its name because it gives you dragon breath- so if you're planning on being up close & personal with someone you're not related to, this is probably not the way to go)

1 box Cheez-its
1 bag Oyster crackers
2 pkgs. Hidden Valley Ranch dry dressing
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Pour 1/4 cup of oil in bottom of a large bowl and add 1 pkg. dressing mix. Pour the Cheez-its in the bowl and coat. Pour them out onto a cookie sheet and put in a 250 degree oven for about 5 minutes (you just want to dry the oil a bit). Do the same for the Oyster crackers and then mix the two together.

Careful- it's got a 96% addiction rate.

See y'all!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Health Insurance: Let's Discuss...

There's a lot of talk about the health "crisis" right now, and honestly I just don't have the energy to get scrappy about it. And I am certainly NOT going to discuss the politics of it, because if my breeding didn't yield anything else, it did yield this little gem of advice:

In matters of politics one should keep her mouth shut and let her vote do the talking. (Well a vote and a few hilarious children)

So, I'm keeping my mouth shut and letting these little guys do the talking for me. Enjoy!

Taking Care of business...

In need of a snotty doctor? She's really beautiful....

Care to know how Chuck Norris died?

See y'all!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

The One-Trackedness of Their Minds Starts Early (Or Why I Miss Bear In the Big Blue House)

Okay- we'll all take a moment here because my mom is crying at the memory of Bear... Okay. We're done.

The boy turns 13 on the 13th of this month. I'm having a little trouble with it...actually I'm beside myself over it. He's 13 which means I can no longer pretend I'm in my 20's because the math becomes...well...impossible.

Anyway, I was reading Amanda's post today, and Amanda, if you're reading- I totally feel your pain. Been there and done that one too, but hopefully the preschool poster story I'm about to tell you will make you feel better, or cause you to withdraw him altogether.

When G was a preschooler we started every day off with Bear. G would go right up to the screen and let Bear sniff him, and then he'd watch intently and sing with Luna at the end. Oh, how I miss Luna and Bear. Needless to say, he did love Bear.

And he loved Veggie Tales, matter of fact, once he painted himself blue from head to toe in an effort to be like Madame Blueberry.

Back story: I was painting the front door so I put him in the front yard with his easel and paints. I obviously had my back to him, and he was singing "I'm so blue hoo hoo, blue hoo hoo, blue hoo hoo hooooo, I'm so blue I don't know what to do."

Turns out he was; and I didn't know what to do either.

We ended up going with soap and a hose pipe.

And finally, he loved Spot and his momma. I joke that he'd still be in the womb if they hadn't gone in after him.

Which begs the question: Why, when he was assigned in preschool to cut out pictures of things he liked and glue them on a poster board, didn't he choose one of those characters?

Or M&M's like so many of his classmates.

Or pizza? Everyone likes pizza- right? I mean, all the other posters had sloppily glued pictures of pizza and candy and...

Children frolicking in yards playing on swing sets with their parents. Families grilling out, families riding in mini-vans, and on and on. You get the picture.

Oh how I loved walking down the hall looking at all the children's posters.

Until I reached G's.

And I started chanting Jenny's prayer from Forrest Gump: "Dear God, make me a bird so I can fly far far away...Dear God, make me a bird so I can fly far far away."

Something you need to know. G has some OCD tendencies. He likes things to be orderly and neat. He did not see the point in muddying up his poster with many pictures of things he liked.

Nope- instead he chose to focus on just one thing that he really, really liked..and glue it dead center in the middle of the poster.

And let me say right now, I have never regretted a decision more than teaching him how to write his name when he was two. Because he had written it in BIG RED LETTERS RIGHT ACROSS THE TOP OF...


Doesn't every four-year old have an affinity for Gabby Reece half-nude and lounging in water?

Y'all I ripped that poster down and hung it back up about four times before I finally decided to leave it and just get out of there.

I grabbed G and we ran.

And then we got into the car and we talked:

ME: Hey Buddy, what did you do in school today?

G: Played.

ME: Did you make a poster?

G: Uh-huh.

ME: About what?

G: What we liked.

ME: I saw that. I'm confused. What did you choose as the thing you liked?

G: Swimming.

Oh, well of course, SWIMMING.

See y'all!

Cutting a 2yr old's hair

Cutting a 2 yr. old's hair while he is in the bath tub playing can be a challenge. But, after stuggling in between splashes, it is done and with SUCCESS!! I should have taken a picture so you could see my handy work..... not too shabby. The very 1st time I did it, he did so good, but then he figured out what I was doing by the second time. This time was not too bad, but did get a few "owie's" as I was trying to grab pieces to cut it. That was our venture when we got home from a very long day.

Today was not too bad of a day. I was able to go to the chiropractor to get an hour massage....boy was that great. I took the kids to "MeMaw Susan's" while I had my appointment. They enjoyed getting to go to grandma's house and play. Something different, because they never go over there. She usually comes to our house to watch them, but the chiropractor is right down the road from her house. Just easier to go there.

I have 3 weeks from today before my next doctor's appointment. These once a month ones seem to drag on longer than a month. Will it ever get here?? Maybe the next few will go quicker, because I won't have any "big" ones to pine for (1st heartbeat, 1st sonogram, hoping to find out the gender early, finding out the gender). I am really not looking forward to the gestational diabetes test visit. That stuff they make you drink is SO nasty.

Well, that's semi-boring day..... Not as creative as Angela :)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Getting a Grip

7:00 a.m. - hmmm. Stomach feels a little weird. (If you know me, this is totally a normal thing- I have issues). No seriously, this is not the same kind of sick I normally feel. This is really more like the sick I imagine that AC felt last week and that Coach suffered through this weekend.

7:15 a.m- pit stop in the potty room which will ensure I am late.

7:30 a.m.- arrive at school in the nick of time for my meeting..and then go to the wrong room. Awesome.

8:30 a.m.- 1st class of the day. Seniors. Seniors who didn't really think it necessary to actually turn in their first paper. Have to remind 4 of them of the policy and inform them that they will more than likely fail...for the quarter. Life stinks...for them.

And so the day went. You know when you have one of those days when nothing goes right?

I should have known when my hair was totally flat and whoppy-jawed and seriously, I kid you not, my mascara even went on poorly. I didn't even know you could have a bad mascara day until today.

Turns out, it's totally possible, and obviously an inevitability if you are also having a bad hair day and your rear end has turned into a butane torch. (Sorry for that- but seriously...it's quite an impressive burn I have going.)

On top of all the minor little annoyances that will just nearly drive a girl to drink, one of those wicked people we were talking about the other day reared her ugly head today in what can only be considered a test of my faith.

I fear that if I don't make haste to the bed and hide at the very foot of it screaming Micah 7:7 as loudly as I can I might just fail this one. Because, honestly, I think I could get downright scrappy and mean tonight if I don't just give it up.

So, like I do everytime I'm feeling out of sorts, I watch videos on my computer. I started out with the Pride of the Southland Marching Band's halftime performance complete with the circle drill- a tortuously difficult formation- I'll spare you the 7:14 minutes of your life that you'd never get back. (And no, I was never in a marching band, they just make me happy.)

Then I moved onto a bear named Cookie and a 70-year-old retired teacher who lives in Alaska and hangs out with Cookie and his pals. I like animals, sue me

And I ended with this:

And again, got a little bit of perspective. I'm feeling pitiful and sorry for myself because my stomach hurts and I'm tired. In a minute my phone will ring and my mother will remind me of how awful I get when I'm tired and tell me to go to bed before I put someone's heart out.

I'm going...I'm going.

But I'm thankful for this video. I'm thankful for a way to see people whose circumstances are so much more impossible and terrifying than mine.

And they're smiling.


So, I'm off to my bed. Tomorrow is a new day; hopefully one that will not have me longing for Tucks pads and a .38 special, but a new day nonetheless.

Because even as whiny as I am, my God WILL hear me, though he may regret every single minute of it...

See y'all!!!

Contractions at 14 weeks are not fun.....

Yes, contractions...at 14 weeks...NOT GOOD! Well, they are not hard contractions, but they are contractions none the less. The last 2-3 weeks at work have been physically and emotionally stressful, and I think that is the big contributing factor. My doctor last week told me that it is normal and that is just part of my uterus growing, and can have them more the more children you have, but I still worry about it. It's not overly painful, and is just maily pressure, but I also had full on contractions starting at 24 weeks with my son. I just don't want to deal with weekly, bi-weekly, and sometimes even tri-weekly dr. visits again. I am sure it is nothing to worry about, but I have been really emotional the last two days....Completely work related, but emotional non the less.

Anyway, if they get any worse, I will call the doctor, but at this point they are not major. In fact, they were much stronger than this with my son and I didn't even know I was having contractions, so I only recognize it as that because I'm on baby #3.... And who knows, maybe it is just my body growing to accommodate a living thing inside me :) We shall see!!!