Friday, September 29, 2006

rAndOm frIdAY

Happy 4th birthday, Aiden!


Dallin got a hair cut again on Wednesday. He looks like a boy again, which is nice. I get tired of people saying how cute SHE is. Yes, because I would dress my little girl in total boy clothes... for church! Anyrate, I know that he is very pretty. He got his dad's beautiful dark brown eyes and long eyelashes. Combine that with long, soft hair (long for a baby, anyrate), and he looks like a girl. However, he is most definitely a boy!! So the haircut is nice.


My favorite number is 3. I'm not sure why. When I was really young, I played soccer. My first year was on a team in Southern California, and we were called the Grape Apes (don't ask me why we chose that name. I don't really remember, but we liked it at the time. And we wore purple uniforms). We actually were a very good team... we got second place in our division. Or something. I don't remember how it works! When we got our uniforms, however, we were allowed to pick which number we wanted, and for some reason I felt I had to have number 3. When we moved to another state, I had to fight for it, but I got number 3 when I joined a new soccer league. If you make me guess a number, any number, between 1 and 10, I usually pick 3. It's my favorite number. Maybe because it's sacred in nature. Maybe because it symbolized the close relationship between my brother, sister, and me. Maybe because I couldn't count any higher (not really!!). I still like 3 the best of all.


Why do some people feel it is necessary to play their car stereos so loud that you can clearly understand every single foul word coming from the rap song and you can feel the bass shake your house windows and even make your heart beat a little faster? And why does it usually happen in the middle of the night?


I have family in town, so I can't spend a whole lot of time on the computer right now. So this is pretty much all you're getting for Random Friday today. Sorry. Stay tuned for next week... it might be better. Then again, it might not.


Oh, no one told me any of their favorite songs that I should add to my Required Guitar Repertoire List (please see last Friday's RF post). So go back and read that little bit, then let me know what you think. And don't suggest "Stairway to Heaven". This is not an electic guitar. It's an acoustic. Well, a classical, but same difference.


Quote of the Day:
The world is a difficult world, indeed,
And people are hard to suit,
And the man who plays on the violin
Is a bore to the man with the flute.
--Sir Thomas Beecham

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

A Short One

I feel like I'm constantly writing these really long posts. It's just like the way I talk. I can't shut up. I ramble.

However, I wanted to prove that I can, indeed, write a short post about something. So here it is.

I can write a short post, and I just did. So there.

The Hardest Job I've Ever Had

Right after I turned 17 I decided that babysitting wasn't going to be a good enough income for my needs. I decided to get a job. My friend Ashley, who drove me home from school everyday, took me to the local Shoney's restaurant, and I filled out an application. The manager talked to me right then, and I was essentially hired on the spot.

The next week I started orientation. It seemed so silly, learning how to cut lemons and how to hold a tray, but I guess it was important to the company that their servers knew how to do these things. I was given my uniform, but since I was so small, they had to order a skirt for me. I would have to make do with what they had. I pinned about two inches on either side of my waist in and I never did get that smaller skirt. I looked like a little girl playing dress up.

I learned to have a great, fake smile, to flirt with people, and to act as if the customer was always right... all for a tip. I had to work weekend nights and several weekday nights. I didn't mind too much. It was my junior year of high school, and I felt abandoned by my friends who had graduated the year before. The only time it was really bad to work was the night of the Valentine's dance at school. A large group of students (who weren't really my friends because they were the popular kids, but I had classes with all of them) came in and guess who got to be their server? I had to endure watching everyone having fun with their dates and answer questions about why I didn't go to the dance and then get a lousy tip from them in the end.

As soon as I found another part-time job, I quit. I hated being a server. However, I can still hold a very full tray of food with the best of them.


I have worked for two movie theatres. One was a small, family-owned theatre in our town. The owner's daughter and I had a mutual best friend, and the daughter and I became really close from that job. Of course, it helped that she was also in band, so we got to see each other a lot. I really liked working at that theatre. Everyone was friendly and like a family in many ways. We had a lot of fun at work, too. When Arkansas won the NCAA basketball tournament in 1994, we also happened to be showing the Flinstone's movie. We listened to the game on the radio, and when Arkansas won, we (like the rest of the state) were ecstatic! We talked to our boss, and someone ran to Wal-mart, bringing back red Arkansas Champions t-shirts with Fred Flinstone playing basketball on the front. We got to wear those to work for a while. Later, we talked the boss into letting us order polo shirts with the name of the movie theatre and our names embroidered on them. We had them dyed the same green as the new carpet. We all liked wearing those shirts rather than a white button-down shirt with a vest and bow-tie. I still have my shirt.

The second movie theatre I workd for was part of a very large chain. There were a lot more people that worked there, and we even had several managers. It was a bit different from the first theatre, but I still enjoyed it. I made friends quickly, and had lots of people to hang out with. It was the summer after my sophomore year at Ricks College... the summer I was living with my aunt... the summer where I was dating my future husband, but he was living in a completely different state and working, so I didn't see him for almost four months... the summer I took to really think about how I am and what I wanted. At the end of the summer, Mr. Universe came out to visit me. I still had to work for a few days, and I didn't want him to be totally bored. He got to come to the movie theatre and watch movie after movie... all for free. Usually I could only get people in for free movies if they were accompanying me. However, the managers had become good friends of mine, and after we were married and came back for visits, these guys still offered free movies to us. It was fun working there.


I worked as an early-morning janitor my first fall semester at Ricks. I was assigned to the Hart Building, which was the physical education building. I could often be found sweeping the floors of the racketball courts, the dance studio, and the main gym. I worked from 4 am to 7 am, and my first class was at 8. I hated that job. I had blisters on my hands from the push brooms, which made my flute playing harder and learning the piano almost impossible. I was exhausted and falling asleep in my 10 am algebra class. After a few weeks of total misery, my mom and stepdad said I could quit my job and focus on my studies. My new job was simply to get good grades.


After Mr. Universe and I had been married about 2 years, we spent a summer in Utah to find jobs. He had one from before we were married, and I found a job working for a telemarketing company. I was "Corporate Quality Assurance", which basically meant I listened to the recordings of the calls the telemarketers made and had to make sure they followed their script word for word. I had to write a report on every single call (actually, it was more of filling out a form), and we were expected to do a certain number of calls in an hour. We listened to the calls on fast speed. Let me tell you, even on this so-called "fast speed", some of the telemarketers would read sooooooooo slowly, it would take them forever to get through one simple sentence! I hated it! One day, as I was clearly frustrated and leaving after a day of listening to a bunch of idiots try and sell stuff to people who could care less, a manager asked me, "What do you think would make this job better?" I quickly answered, "Give reading tests to the telemarketers before they are hired!"

"Ummm, we already do that," the manager said quietly.

"Well, does it count for anything??" I quite that job and worked for a few weeks at a temp agency instead. I ended up working at a factory that makes bows and arrows. It was noisy, but satisfying. I liked that job so much better.


After I graduated from university, we moved here to Arizona so Ches could do his student teaching. I was to find work. I ended up subbing for the Mesa School District, and I mostly loved it! I was a little scared to sub because it really hadn't been all that long since I was a student who would do things to subs. Okay, I didn't do things, but I didn't stop them, either. Anyway...

Shortly after I started working, I had a miscarriage. It was a really rough time for me, and a really rough time for our marriage as we dealt with our grief in totally different ways. One day I got the call to sub at a special school. This school is for pregnant and ntewly delivered teen mothers. I would be teaching English literature and history. I loved the subjects, but since I was still grieving I wasn't sure if I could handle seeing all these pregnant girls. I felt it so unfair that I was doing what I deemed "right", and yet I had lost a much wanted baby, and these stupid, irresponsible teenagers were not only able to get pregnant, but they were all keeping their babies. I was bitter at the situation. I was unsure about taking this job, but I needed to work. So I accepted and went to sub the next morning.

I loved it. These girls found out about the miscarriage and they were so kind. They were not stupid and irresponsible. They were smart girls who had made a "mistake", but were continuing to get their education and do the best they could for their new situation. I left a message at the front desk saying I would sub for this school anytime.


I currently don't get paid for the job I have. I don't get vacations. I don't even get a lunch break. I am always on duty. I have to learn and do things I never thought I would do (mainly cooking!!), and I have to answer questions that I would never have thought of asking in the first place. I am exhausted constantly, and I have to take medication for depression. I'm constantly on the go. I don't have family near by to help out in a pinch. I am a mother, and parenting is the hardest job I've ever had. Facing hungry, angry customers is much easier than facing a 3-year-old pitching a huge fit in the middle of Target. Listening to a 20-year-old who can't read attempt to sell Disney books to a 75-year-old widower is much easier than watching the same Blue's Clues DVD 4 times in a row... everyday! Facing teen moms and trying not to take out my bitterness and grief on them is much easier than facing a two year old who has just colored all over your bedspread with permanent markers and then NOT beating them to a pulp.

Yes, all of my previous jobs had some really hard days, but you know what? I wouldn't trade my job right now for anything in the world. Parenting is hard, but there is nothing like raising these three boys and wondering what kind of men they will turn out to be. I love it.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Willekeurige vrijdag

I had my two-week post-partum checkup yesterday. Everything looks good. I especially liked getting weighed, actually. While my weight is much higher than I would like it to be, it is looking good and I know it won't be too bad to work off. Heck, I just had a baby! I'm feeling great!!


My mom has been here in town for the past week, visiting and helping. It has been pretty great. Normally I get sick of people after a week, so my mom arranged to go to my sister's in California. After I get rid of whoever was here helping me, I wish I had kept them here, so Mom will stay in CA for a week, then return here to my house for a little more than a week.It's all going to work out really well.

Like I said, I have enjoyed having my mom here. It's nice to talk and stuff. She, of course, is loving her time with three of her grandsons. I think Aiden is enjoying it the most. He hangs on Grandma's every word. They play "light saber pillow battle", Candy Land, Chutes and Ladders, Blue's Clue's Memory, and whatever else they can find in the game cupboard. She has taken him on walksand played in the backyard. She tells him stories and reads to him and he listens to every little bit of it. Grandma is completely worn out and will need a rest when she goes home!!


I am rereading "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" (the sixth Harry Potter book) again. I have only read it once, and I want to look for more clues of what is going on and what will happen, not only at the end of this book, but perhaps some foreshadowing for Book 7. It is going rather slowly because I read a couple of pages, then the baby needs to be fed, or Dallin wants to watch Blue's Clues, or the phone rings and I have to talk to more strangers about health care... you get the picture. I am enjoying the read, however, and remembering bits and pieces here and there.


Speaking of Harry Potter... Happy 19th Birthday to Tom Felton!! (Tom is the actor who plays Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter movies).


I have a guitar, and while I did take a class my freshman year at Ricks, I didn't really learn anything. I can play "Down In the Valley", and that's about it. However, I would like to really learn to play my guitar (you know, the cool classical one that Ches got me for Christmas last year??), and there are a few songs that I think should be on my own, personal, required repertoire list. This songs include:
Blackbird by Paul McCartney
Blowin' in the Wind by Joan Baez
I'm Sensitive by Jewel
Blister in the Sun by the Violent Femmes

Okay, actually that's about all I have on my required list right now. "Blackbird" because I have always loved that tune, and "Blowin' in the Wind" because whenever I pulled out my guitar to practice while at Ricks, my roommate (Jessica) would start singing very loudly, "The answer, my friend, is blowin' in the wind. The answer is blowin' in the wind!" and would request that I play it for her. "I'm Sensitive" is also just beautiful, and I once heard a girl perform it during Guitars Unplugged while at Ricks and thought it was awesome. Oh, and "Blister in the Sun" just because that is THE road trip song, and I figure if we go camping and take our guitars along for singing around the fire, road trip songs are just as good as campfire songs, if not better.

Any suggestions for my required repertoire list?


So Mr. Universe just brought in the mail for today. Apparantly AT&T over-charged our account (from when we were in Reno), so the sent us a refund check. For 13 cents.

What a waste. A waste of paper, of postage, of time. Just a waste.

We were watching Survivor last night, and I have one question. A girl on the tribe of African-Americans said (when talking about if they have to lose another member of their tribe), "We're already at a disadvantage because we're all African-American."

What the heck did she mean? Because they are a minority group and African-American? I don't get it. There are two other tribes that are comprised of minority groups (one Hispanic or Latino, the other Asian-Americans), and you don't here them complaining of being at a disadvantage! I hope I'm blowing this out of proportion, but I seriously don't get the statement she made. Anyone willing to enlighten me (without being nasty to me or anyone else or any ethnic groups in general!!)??


Speaking of Survivor... were you just as shocked at the declaration of "love at first sight" by Billy abnout Candace as we were? I loved Jeff Probst's expression. That was a classic face right there. I wish I had seen the cast-off Billy on CBS this morning because I'm sure they have asked him about it. I wonder what Candace thinks? When did she find out about this supposed love?? Oh, the drama... even the drama that probably isn't there at all.


No offense to the rest of you moms and dads out there, but I swear that Mr, Universe and I make the cutest babies in the universe. Not just my Universe, either. The entire universe!!! Don't ttry to argue. You all have wonderfully cute children, but as this is MY Universe that you are visiting, I'm allowed to make such blanket statements without being accused of bias. So there.


If I could have a million dollars (tax free, of course), what would I do with it? Of course first I'd be all responsible and pay off all our debts, buy a house, and put quite a bit in savings for us and each of the kids. But what irresponsible or just plain fun things would I do??? I don't know... get a tummy tuck and lazer surgery to get rid of all the nasty stretch marks; go on a year-long vacation around Europe; buy season tickets of the best seats for both the Chicago Cubs and tge Calgary Flames as well as plane tickets for all the games.

What irresponsible and/or just plain fun things would you do with a million (tax free) dollars??


Quote of the day:
It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; What is essential is invisible to the eye.
Antoine de Saint-Exupery; The Little Prince

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Love Thursday

I just had to add a photo for this Love Thursday thing that everyone seems to be doing. I don't know about the link thing, so I'm just putting up the photo.

This is Mr. Universe and our first little star in December, 2004. Aiden wants to be just like his dad so much of the time, so when Ches was practicing his trumpet at home over Christmas break, Aiden found the trumpet ornament for the tree (that we typically use instead of a star or angel on the top) and had to play along. Ches was doing scales and arpeggios and such, and Aiden would just sing along. I love my trumpet players, and they sure love each other!!

Today is September 21st

Happy Birthday to You, Madhatter!!

Happy Anniversary V&T!!!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Baby You Can Drive My Car

I got my Arizona driver's license yesterday. The wait time actually wasn't that long, and I didn't have to take a test or anything. Just fill out a form, pay my $25, and turn in my Nevada license. I had fixed up my hair all special, but it was doing all sorts of strange flippy things... so it just looks ridiculous. I had put on my makeup and think I looked really nice, but those cameras aren't always the best, and my face looks a lot pinker than my neck. I had to change my shirt at the last minute before we left because I'm a klutz and I spilled pizza sauce on my shirt, so I ended up wearing a white t-shirt and white tends to make me look washed out (except that I have a pink face) and freaky. I made a face at my picture as soon as I saw it, and Mr. Universe just kind of laughed. He said, "Driver's license pictures are never supposed to look good." He's right, I know, but I tried anyway.

While filling out the form, it asked for my weight. HA! I just had a baby 11 days earlier! What is my weight? How should I know? I hope to get a lot smaller than this, but I put down 145.


I got my first license at the age of 15. In Arkansas, at the time I don't know how it is now, of course), you had to take a written test before you could get a permit. Then you had to wait a certain period of time before you could take the driving test. I had to take the written test twice. That was pretty common. After three times of failing the written, you weren't allowed to take it again for another set period of time. Oh, and once you failed the first time, you had to wait I think a week before you caould take the test again.

Once I had my permit, I got to practice driving a lot. My mom taught me, mostly. At that time, in Arkansas, you weren't required to take driver's ed, and our particular insurance wasn't going to give any discounts or anything for it, so I didn't take it. I didn't have the time or the money anyway.

Anyway, after I passed my driving test (which the tester said I was an excellent driver, by the way), and my best friend, Susan, passed hers, my Mom took us over to the DMV to get our new licenses. I had a bad perm that was growing out, so my hair was kind of long, frizzy, and pretty much parted in the middle. I was wearing a long-sleaved denim shirt, and a cool necklace with turquoise beads on it. I wore my round framed glasses (very John Lennon, but bigger frames). I stood exactly where I was supposed to, and the woman said in a very bored voice, "Okay, on the count of three... One... Two... *click*!" The camera flashed and I was dumbfounded.

"What happened to three??" I looked around, but no one would answer my question. It was like a cruel joke. I wasn't smiling yet because I was waiting for three so I wouldn't look too forced!!

After about 10 minutes, I was handed my brand new, very first driver's license. I looked first at the picture. I looked like a hippy... a very unhappy hippy with crooked glasses. Not my best moment.


I have held driver's licenses in several states since then... California, Idaho, Nevada... but nothing is as memorable as your first.

My new license is pretty cool. My picture does look a little freaky, but what can you expect? It has all the vital information on it. I am an organ donar. I am registered to vote (and I had a hard time deciding what to put down for a particular party! I finally wrote down Republican, but I don't know if I really consider myself that. I don't consider myself a Democrat, either, so I guess maybe I should have written "Independent". Ches left his blank because he can never remember which party is which). Oh, and you want to know the expiration date on my license?


Today is September 20th

Happy Birthday, Richard!!!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Tilfeldig Fredag

Parker is one week old today. What a week, huh?? Seems like it's been crazy for the whole world, not just me. That's good, because I don't really need to have all the attention. Just most of it.


Parker means "keeper of the forest". I guess like park ranger or something. What's cool about that name is that one of the things Mr. Universe used to think he wanted to be when he grew up was a forest ranger. He's an outdoors-y kind of guy... He loves mountains and trees and camping and stuff. Too bad we don't get to do a whole lot of it. Anyrate, so while we just kind of came up with the name Parker Benjamin, it has meaning because even though Mr. Universe didn't become a forest ranger himself, now we have one of our own.


Funny things my kid (and some others we know, too) have said lately:

"Mom, the law says I can't be in Time Out anymore."

When asked what day his birthday is: "It's on Friday. No, Saturday." No, Aiden, what is the date? September what? "The, uh, 39th."

During prayers: "Thank you, God, for the Aladdin soundtrack, the Lion King sountrack, the Pirates soundtrack, and uh, for meaning in life and then die."
--Kaely, age 3

Talking about another galaxy (not ours, nor the Star Wars galaxy... for once): "Can we go to the other galaxy?" No, it's too far away and we don't have a space ship to fly there. "Well, my dad can help me build one."


I was just thinking today that Nike ought to change their slogan. We are all familiar with their "Just do it" campaign. It's been highly successful since it was first introduced (don't ask me when! Forever ago!). However, we are always seeing these health reports about obesity and that Americans just lead such sedentary lifestyles, so here is what Nike ought to change it's slogan to: "Just do something!" Think they'll go for it and pay me a ginormous amount of money for my idea? Yeah, me neither.


Ches and I were watching the weather forecast last night and chuckling as they repeatedly stated we were going to have a cooler weekend. They said it would be cool and breezy. The high temperature?? 93 (F)!!! Maybe if the temperature stays closer to the projected low (71)...


My mommy will be here tomorrow! Yay! I'm going to get so much sleep next week as she plays with her older two grandsons.


Birthday season in our family has arrived. Tomorrow is my nephew Jago's first birthday. Next week starts the really big push... Tim, Richard, Allen, Aiden, Emily, and Mom all have birthdays. I think that's all. And, of course, throw in Vince and Tanya's wedding anniversary... I sure hope everyone doesn't expect gifts from us.


I'm online chatting with ABQ, Proud Mum, and Laural (who I have decided that instead of typing her name, I will consistantly call her Lo. I have her permission. I think it's cute) right now, and we are discussing Halloween costumes for our kids, our husbands, and for us. Yes, it's still over a month away, but it's time to think about it folks! Especially if you're one of those great Mollys that can sew and do it for your family every year.

So I'm wondering... what are you going to be for Halloween?


Quote of the day:
The grass may be greener on the other side of the fence, but you still have to mow it.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

He's Here!

Hello fellow internets! Our baby has arrived! Yes, the guesses most of you made because of my absence were correct. Here is the story (with the vital information towards the bottom, if you want to skip the story, which is totally fine with me):

On Wednesday, Mr. Universe's car broke down. He couldn't start the darn thing, finally found someone to give him a boost, and he made it home. He turned off the car, then went to turn it on again, but nothing happened. He took the van, bought a new battery, and replaced the battery. The car was fine. Thursday morning, Mr. Universe took his own car (with the new battery, of course!), but when he was to come home that afternoon, the car wouldn't start again. Nothing was working. So I piled the kids in the van and drove the 45 minutes to his school, we tried to jump start the car, but all we got were sparks and smoke. We left Mr. Universe's car at work with the plan that we would figure it out the next day. HOWEVER...

I was having some contractions on the way home, but didn't think much about it. I've been having contractions all along, really. By the time we got home, they were starting to feel more intense, and getting a bit more regular. About 7 pm, they were less than 10 minutes apart, so I decided to start making plans in case we went to the hospital. I packed a bag for me and a bag for the boys. We made some phone calls and Mr. Universe and the boys ate some dinner (even though I was starving, I knew that if I really was in labor I would be having a c-section and they wouldn't want me to have eaten anything. The last time I ate was on the way home from the school, around 5 pm, and I only had a few yogurt-covered pretzels). We dropped the boys off at my visiting teacher's house about 9 pm, and my contractions had suddenly moved up to about 3 to 5 minutes apart, getting more and more intense.

We checked in to the hospital right at 9:30 pm. They checked me out, and talked to me about my options. The doctor was willing to let me try for a vaginal delivery, but he wanted me monitered for an hour to see how I progressed. After and hour, the nurse called the doctor, and he wasn't happy with how little progress I had made, but wanted me monitered for another hour. By the end of that hour, the contractions felt like they were killing me! I mean, I knew they could get worse, but they were pretty bad. I still hadn't progressed well, and since it seemed like I was following the same path as when I was in labor with Aiden, we(Mr. Universe, the doctor, and I) decided a c-section would be best. I was hoping for a vaginal delivery, but knew that a c-section would most likely happen. I was surprised when I even got a choice! Mentally, I was prepared.

We got more paperwork filled out, blood drawn, scrubs on Ches, and all the fun stuff that takes forever before you even enter the surgical room. It was after 1 am, and my surgery scheduled for 1:30. I was brought into the room (and Ches had to wait outside, of course), and given my spinal. Everything was going fine, and then I started having a bit of a panic attack. This happened with both of my previous c-sections, and I thought I'd be able to keep myself calm, but it didn't work. I was hyperventilating and just trying to breathe. I kept asking when they could bring Ches in. I just wanted him there to hold my hand and keep me calm! No one is as good as my husband! Finally, I calmed down enough, I was numb enough, they had the sheet up, and they brought in Mr. Universe.

Ches was able to sit right there and talk to me and I really did feel more calm with him there.

At 1:54 am, out came a beautiful little boy! They cleaned him up a little bit, then brought him to me and actually let me hold him for a couple of minutes. That was a first. Then Mr. Universe and the newest little star in the family went away while they finished cleaning me and sewing me back together. No staples this time!! Yay!

I was taken into the recovery room, and Ches was brought in right away. We were able to talk and joke around a bit as we waited for our new baby to come in (they were giving him a bath, they said). Then the moved me to my room. No, we still hadn't decided on a name.

I finally got to see the baby again about 3 am. We did try nursing, and he latched on right away!! That was a first. He is a great little eater (when he's awake enough to actually eat!). Ches went home about 5 to get a couple hours of sleep before he got the boys in the morning.

No, we had not picked a name yet. Ches and I could NOT decide on a name! We had this great list of names, and we wanted a family name in there (Aiden and Dallin have family names for their middle name), bt nothing seemed right. Finally, about lunch time, we came up with a name that we both liked and just felt right. So...

Parker Benjamin was born on Friday, September 8th, 2006 at 1:54 am. He weighed 7 lbs 4 oz and was 21 inches long. He has lots of fuzzy black hair, and really dark, blue eyes. He is absolutely perfect!

If you would like to see a picture of him from the day he was born, go to
Click on the maternity link, then the virtual nursery.

I will post pictures of him soon. He already looks a bit different, I think. Parker and I came home Sunday afternoon, and we are slowly but surely getting into the swing of things. Oh, and no one came up with the correct date, but Proud Mum was closest (guessing the 9th), so she get the prize of (drumroll, please)... cyber brownies! All you can eat! Literally no calories!! Enjoy, PM.

Talk to you all soon!!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Interest or Obsession??

Last night I watched "Fever Pitch" on one of those movie channels. It stars Drew Barrymore and Jimmy Fallon. It was a cute movie. Not as funny as I thought it would be, but I still liked it a lot. If you haven't seen it, let me tell you a little bit about the story. It's about this math teacher (Jimmy Fallon) who meets a young professional (Drew Barrymore), and they start dating. Her friends ask her what his deal is because he seems smart and funny and cute, so why is he 30-something and still single? His one big flaw? He is a Boston Red Socks fan. I'm not talking someone who loves to watch the games on TV and owns a couple of t-shirts and a hat. I'm talking full-on knowledge of every Red Sox game ever. He owns every book, every piece of memorabilia, and he inherited some of the best seats in Fenway Park. During baseball season, his life literally revolves around the Red Socks.

At first the girl is fine with his "interest", but realizes over time that it is more than an interest. It actually threatens their relationship quite a bit. Now, I don't want to spoil any of the movie for you (even though yes, it is quite predictable), so I'm going to stop talking about the movie now.

I have family members and friends who remind me of Jimmy Fallon's character. They get an interest, but then that interest grows and grows. Soon, it seems to be more of an obsession than an interest. Where do you draw the line? I don't feel that I have an obsessions. I show an interest in something (for example, let's say I think frogs are kind of cute), so I get a few things here and there (a pair of earrings, a stuffed animal), and the next thing I know everyone around me is giving me so much frog stuff that I feel like I married Kermit and we settled down in a swamp somewhere. I have t-shirts, magnents, decorative pins, glow-in-the-dark frogs, more stuffed animals, postcards, posters, books and bookmarks, quilts, baby clothes, planters... I am surrounded by frogs!!

Of course, that is only an example (*wink*). I don't do that to myself, of course. I don't feel the need to, especially if everyone is giving me all this stuff. I get sick of it, though, because I don't want to be known as "the frog lady" or something by the neighborhood children. I have a lot of interests, and I don't feel that there is one or two interests that take over everything else in my life. I like variety.

I just don't like obsessions. Obsessions take over everything, and I think you lose friends, too, because not everyone thinks whatever your obsession is is that great anyway. You know the saying... "variety is the spice of life!" If you have an obsession, think about taking it down a notch (or two, or twenty!) and making it an interest. And cultivate some other interests! Just a thought.

Library Time!!

**note: I had pictures to go along with this post, I took some pictures, but Blogger is being a bugger. You can see the pictures (and a couple others) on Flickr, instead. Sorry about that.**

Last week, I took the boys to the local library so I could get a new card. We all know how much I love to read. Well, guess who else got to get his own card? That's right! Aiden! His first library card!

The library cards here are pretty cool, too. I got to pick from about 5 different pictures, and so I picked a nice feminine one (got to have that with all the testosterone around my house), and Aiden chose from about 4 different kids' card pictures. He is very proud of his library card.

To get to the children's section of the library, you have to go down a very large staircase and in through a large doorway. It's like a whole different world there. There is an area of about 10 tables with puzzles, a large area of toys on shelves and play toys on the floor (like small playhouses and such) and small tables and chairs, all surrounded in a circle by soft chairs for parents, rows and rows and rows of books, all seperated by reading levels, lots of computers, more soft chairs and benches, a kids' bathroom (with short sinks and everything!!), and a baby changing room with lots of counters, soft changing pads on the counters, and rocking chairs for nursing.

I love this library, and I haven't even been able to check out the adult section!

We are going to the library today to return the videos the kids checked out last week, and find some new books to read. I'm getting kind of tired or reading "Peek A Who" and "Can You Hop?" to Dallin over and over again, so we'll find something else that will bore me to tears for a few weeks, but will entertain him beyond belief. We'll get some easy reading books for Aiden, who has taken to reading all the signs on the streets and store fronts as we drive down the road (which is funny to me, because one of my few memories from about that age, when my parents were still married, is being in the car and reading all the street signs and store/restaurant signs out loud and my parents getting a little annoyed because I had to read every single word I saw!).

I need some suggestions for reading material for me. I like fiction, and stories that really draw me in to that world. I don't like really wordy authors because sometimes they take four pages to describe something as mundane as what the girl packed in her suitcase before a big trip. I do like "chick lit" (you know, like "Bridget Jones' Diary"), but that is often too short of a read for me. Too easy. I like to use my brain a bit, not just read for a couple hours of complete trashy pleasure or something. I don't want anything too challenging at this time, however (my mind is a little preoccupied!), so no Shakespeare or Homer.

Any suggestions?? You guys are the best!!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The Ideal Picture

Yesterday was such a great holiday for me. In the late afternoon, Mr. Universe set out and filled up the wading pool for the boys. I got them in their swimming trunks, helped them find some water toys, and outside we went. I sat on the patio in a comfy "camping" chair, reading a book and watching the boys. Mr. Universe cooked up some steaks on the grill. Not long before the steaks were ready, I chased the boys around the yard with the hose, trying out the new spray nozzle and all it's features. We were all laughing a lot.

It was a perfect evening for all of us. I love having a backyard. I love having a grill. I love my family and having fun evenings like that most of all.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

My Sunday I's...

This is mainly for Kris, who I hasn't done this in a while, and I miss it. I always thought it looked kinda fun, so, here goes!!

1. I still don't know how to do my hair with it's new haircut.
2. I hope my hair grows out really fast so I'll feel normal again.
3. I wonder why when people have parties with lots of alcohol consumption, they always use those big, red plastic cups.
4. I mean, aren't there other kinds and colors of cups to use?
5. I don't mind the neighbors having a party every now and then, but two nights in a row is ridiculous.
6. I honestly think my son is one of the smartest kids his age, hands down.
7. I don't usually like to brag about his "smarts", but how many other kids do you know that is teaching himself to read and taught himself the names of the planets... in order... before he turned four?
8. I love taking a good Sunday afternoon nap.
9. I think my husband is the kindest man in the entire universe (and not just my universe, either).
10. I don't get dirty jokes.
11. I'm still pregnant.
12. I figure I have at least one more week, even though I'm due in just over 3.
13. I'm not quite ready for the baby to come, even though my mind and body thinks otherwise.
14. I was just told that The Amazing Race starts two weeks from today.
15. I love that show!
16. I need to go to the bathroom... again!!!

Friday, September 01, 2006

Random Friday

Welcome, September. One of my favorite months. The nerd that I am, I loved the whole back-to-school season. Remember when we were kids and schools everywhere (not just in Canada and back East) started right after Labor Day? Anyway... September to me means Friday night football games, cooler, crisper air, the smell of sharpened pencils (like what they talk about in "You've Got Mail". I love that part. I felt it.), new beginnings (because of new classes and new teachers and new friends), and apples. September brings Fall. I love the fall. I love the leaves changing color. To really appreciate the many colors of fall, you have to have been to New England in the fall. I don't think any place else does fall nearly as well. I love wearing a sweater and jeans and not being too cold or too hot. This September will be so different from past Septembers. No Friday night football games. No big change in weather. No changing leaf colors. And school has already been in for almost a month. I'm trying not to let that get me down. This will just be a different kind of fall. I have to get used to it, that's all.


How was that for a random paragraph??? ;)


We had a pretty fun evening for Mr. Universe's birthday yesterday. He got home from school really, really early. He had looked some restaurants up online, and found a new one to try out. It is called Elephant Bar Restaurant. It was so fun! It's got kind of a safari-ish atomosphere, but it's not cheesey in any way. The food was pretty good, and our server was really nice. I ate the Miso Yaki Pork Loin Steaks. It came with yummy vegetables, mashed potatos (so light and fluffy! Mmmmm!) and spiced, baked apples. I was very pleased. Ches had some kind of combination plate. It had chicken (which he said was very good), ribs (which he said were okay. He expected more flavor), and shrimp (which he actually won't eat, so they substituted it with another chicken). I can't remember what sides he had, but he seemed pretty happy with it. They have a really good kids menu, and the boys both loved the restaurant , too.

After dinner, we took Ches to a nearby mall to get some new sunglasses. Many years ago, Ches and I paid a lot of money for each of us to have a pair of Oakleys. I purchased a pair of light blue Minutes, and Ches purchased a pair of silver framed, blue lensed XXs. We both love our Oakleys very much. While living in Preston, Ches' sunglasses were stolen from our car, and we figured we'd never see them again, so we bought him a brand new pair of the eact same sunglasses. After a few months, the kid (thief) was caught, he confessed, and many of the items he had stolen from around the neighborhood were returned. Ches now had two pairs of the exact same sunglasses. I can't remember what happened after that, but I do remember the last pair got lost just over a year ago (thanks to Aiden, but we won't blame him too much!). Ches has gone without any sunglasses since then.

We looked at some good stuff, including the tried and true Oakley XXs that Ches loves, but because of finances, he refused to pay that much. We ended up at a kisok in the mall that sells knock offs. He found a pair of "Nike" sunglasses that he really liked, and then because of the great offers (1 pair for 10.99, 2 for 15.99, 3 for 20.99), Ches insisted I get a pair of glasses, too. I was jokingly trying on some of the really stylish glasses that I just don't think of as me. However, I ended up with some pink, Dolce and Gabana knock-offs that make me feel like I should be some rich kid living in L.A. Or I'm Jennifer Lopez.


Aiden and I went grovery shopping the other night, and he found the coolest rock ever in the cart (left by another child with similar interests, I'm sure). He brought the rock home and proudly showed it off to his dad.

After Aiden had been put in bed (about 30 times), he came to the living room and said the rock was sad. The rock wants to go home.

"Aiden, I don't know where the rock's home is!" I replied.

"But Mo-om! The rock needs his family." Aiden was quite concerned about the welfare of this rock.

"The rock is part of our family, now. He came home with you to be in our family." I thought that I had given a pretty good answer. We had adopted a rock before, so why not now? Apparantly Aiden saw it differently this time.

"Mom, rocks are not in our family. Rocks are in rock families. We only have people in our family. We are people! Not rocks!" All of this was said with that "Well, duh!!" tone of voice.

Excuse me. I didn't realize. Our family only has people, not rocks. I should have known better.


25 official days left of my prengnacy. I'm taking bets on what day the baby will actually be born. Any takers??


Quote of the day:
Be glad of life because it gives you the chance to love, and to work, and to play and to look up at the stars.
--Henry van Dyke (1852-1933)