31 December 2008

I Attract Weirdos

I was going to do a post with my resolutions but will forgo that one until tomorrow because I'm still coming up with my resolutions and goals for the 2009 year.

So today I had to go register my car in Arizona, yes we've lived here for almost 11 months and no I haven't registered my car yet. The truck yes, the car no. The TN tags on the car didn't expire until December so I thought I would ride it out as long as possible here. And yes I broke the law. Shame on me.

Anyways, I get there when they open because I'm figuring a crapshoot here either it's going to be so freaking busy because everyone waited until the last day of December to renew their tags OR everyone would be preparing for big New Year's Eve activities and not be at the DMV. There was a line when I got there and a fairly good amount of people in the building when I get in after having the vehicle inspection. I sit down alone on a row, getting ready to bust out my book. I brought a book to counter act Murphy's Law. My thinking is, if I have a book I wouldn't be able to read it because my number would get called too quickly. Without the book I would be sitting there for over an hour bored out of my gord. Instead I attracted a weirdo guy who wanted to tell me about the fact he always waits until the last minute to do everything. Including paying his bill at Sam's which made him bang on their door to let him in and pay it. As I am internally rolling my eyes wondering out of all the empty seats in the joint he picks the one next to me? I have a weirdo magnet; I am convinced of it. Why it can't be a hot guy with a sexy European accent magnet I am not sure. Or maybe a Christian Bale or Hugh Grant magnet? Yes those would be nicer. I would be much happier with that (although I am sure Leo is happier with the weirdo magnet). So he tells me more about stuff and then launches into the fact he didn't pay his taxes for three years and how the IRS charged some two thousand dollars in interest and penalties but didn't pay HIM interest when he overpaid one year. I have entered bizarro world now.

Finally J581 is announced over the intercom, Woohoo my number!! I wish him a happy new year and kind of run up to lane. I now have new shiny Arizona plates. I exit quickly since the magnet seems to be strong today and flee to my car safely.

On a side note, hopefully everyone has a safe and fun filled New Year's Eve. Ring in the new year with a toast and a kiss and please be safe.

Till next year....

29 December 2008

The Year In Review

OK, sorry but I'm going to drop an F bomb in the first couple sentences...As I sit and reflect on 2008, my first thought is: What a fucking year. Yes it could have been worse but I have to say I'm glad it's over and I was not sure there for a while I would make it through it. My current outlook is MUCH better then the early months of 2008 that's for sure.

So here to torture myself (and possibly you too, if you've been reading a while) I will relive the "best" parts of it.

We moved across the country. And really I could end the blog here but what the hell fun would that be?

So let's go ALL the way back to January...

January- the move was decided and I started the blog. Life was forever changed.

February - The big move occurred and my children got EVERY sickness under the sun. We had our first ER visit with Sweet Girl and Little Man got pneumonia. They hated school. We made new evil friends. This was a GREAT month. I was ready to give Arizona the boot and drive my ass back to Tennessee.

March - My parents left. That alone makes for a shitty month. I was not a happy camper at this point. I was homesick, I missed my friends, the kids school, the kids doctors and my family. This was not a good time for me at all.

April - It was already hitting the high 90's and we opened the pool (boy that was fun...that was when I realized that there was NO WAY Danielle will be swimming in water that is not above 90), Sweet Girl wanted a lot of grapes, and Little Man started saying more words.

May - A trip back to TN! And some rain! We sold our house in Tennessee (sadly my escape plan was ended), Sweet Girl stayed close to her roots and became a fan of Sweet Home Alabama.

June - Holy crap it was hot. And we went on Vacation! It was a really great time. And yes there was indeed puke AND an injury. Come on now you should expect that by now!

July - Little Man turned two! It was still pretty damn hot, hotter than June. My parents arrived! My sister and her family came for a visit. And finally, finally, I had no more shades of brown in my house. YAY!!

August - It was hot AND humid, I was happier with the dry heat. My parents left.I fell in love with Twilight. This was a pretty unexciting month. I was in better spirits about living in Arizona, however I was ready for the summer to end.

September - We celebrated Leo's birthday. I started waking up at the ass crack of dawn for my futile attempt to lose weight. My friend Kelly and her daughter visited (good times!!), and Little Man slicked up the walls in his bedroom with vaseline. It was STILL hot though!

October - We took some hikes in the Flagstaff area two weekends in a row, it was great. The weather FINALLY got cooler (thank you God!), we had Halloween with Batman and Super Girl and had a great night of fun and candy, I am still hoping that the S5 shows up in the driveway sooner than later. And poor Little Man took the fooze ball table pole to the mouth.

November - Sweet Girl turns 4! Danielle turns 33! Leo and Danielle were married 12 years this month too. Jeez November is busy! We went back to TN for Thanksgiving. It was finally descent weather in Arizona.

December -Well we haven't had to use our heat OR air since we left for TN in November, that will be nice on the electric bill. And the brisk mornings in the house are nice and have created some good snuggle moments. We had Christmas, a different one then we've had in the past but it was still very nice. I got to keep my job! My outlook on things is definitely improved compared to almost a year ago. We bought Little Man his own bed!

So the year has definitely had it's ups and downs. Overall it's not been my favorite year. And as I said it could certainly have been worse so yes I am thankful it wasn't. I am confident 2009 is going to be MUCH better! I of course have some resolutions, but that's tomorrow's post! :)

My Sweet Children

After spending 5 straight days with the kids without interruption of work or day care, I miss them today. Sometimes, to be honest, they do get on my nerves with their incessant questions and bickering. But they are only 2.5 and 4 so incessant questions are what's in right now and the bickering will never stop I imagine. And like I said today I miss them because I am at work and they are in day care. I miss the incessant questions, not so much on the bickering, but just having them around and hearing them laugh and play.
They are playing really good together these days, aside from when Little Man shakes down the Diamond Castle that does cause a little trouble. But they are using their imaginations and playing together and it makes me happy.

Little Man is talking more and he's so giving. It is so sweet. He got his first pair of Chuck Taylor's yesterday and he looks too damn cute in them.

Sweet Girl is growing up so now she can buckle herself in the car seat. When she asks questions and she gets the answer she will ask another question. She is becoming girly with requests to have her hair blow dried after we wash it and she even asked to get it cut because it was getting in her face. I told her the other day she was getting so big and she proclaimed "Well I am almost 5".

It is amazing to watch them grow. Although it is too fast. Too fast indeed.

26 December 2008

And It's Over...

At least until next year. We had a good Christmas. It was strange to open presents and then not have anywhere to go. Strange in a good way because sometimes driving all over is exhausting. But it would have been nice to have some family around. We talked to all the family and that was good. I was really OK with it.
We took the kids to a movie which they did fantastic in. Sweet Girl didn't get up at all and Little Man only got antsy in the last few minutes. I was shocked and amazed. I was happy.
And it was raining when we got out of the movie so we ran to the car in the rain and that was fun. I was pleased for rain because it gave the sky a nice wintry look and made it feel more Christmasy.

The Diamond Castle was a hit. Sweet Girl jumped up and down and was totally excited (the baby sister request completely forgotten). Little Man liked his GeoTrax stuff and his Batman Batcave. Little Man also enjoys the Diamond Castle but in a slightly different way than Sweet Girl, he likes to shake it so all the furniture falls out and the top comes off and Sweet Girl SCREAMS on the top of her lungs. Oh the joys of brotherly love.

Leo made me look like a schmuck since we decided to not exchange gifts yet he bought some and I didn't. I KNEW I should have bought the BlueRay player. Damnit...always go with your gut. But I did set him up to HAVE to buy it because Sweet Girl wanted to get him a Batman and Spiderman movie so I got them as BlueRays instead of DVD.

So there you go, now begins the cleanup. I have so many boxes I feel like I just moved again. Since everyone had to send us gifts we have shipping boxes AND toy boxes. Thank goodness for recycle.

I hope you enjoyed your day too!!!

24 December 2008

The Present She Won't Be Getting Tomorrow

Sweet Girl wants everything. You can generally count to 3 after a commercial comes on for a child related item and she'll say 'I want that'. We asked her numerous times what does she REALLY want and so that was narrowed down to Barbie and the Diamond Castle stuff. Good enough.

But THEN, we were at a restaurant and Sweet Girl and I had to go to the bathroom. She comes out of the stall (because she has to go in by herself now...), and proclaims:
"I want a baby sister for Christmas"
Me: "WHAT?"
SW: "I want a baby sister for Christmas"
Me: "Well you go tell that to Daddy"

She was totally serious. I chuckled all the way back to the table. So since there is really NO way possible for her to get this for Christmas maybe we can consider it for next year.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

23 December 2008

Because I Meet All My Friends Online...

For the past 4 years or so, I have met most of my recent friends online. When we were still in Nashville I met alot of moms on the Tennessee board of Babycenter.com. When I moved to Arizona I met most of my friends on the mom's board PhoenixMommies.com
Finding my friends online isn't too bad actually, most of them are great and I have enjoyed knowing them for sure. Sure there have been some loonies but for the most part everyone has been normal and nice. And I am smart enough to meet all my online friends at a public place and let Leo know where I'm going, so if for some reason I don't come home he at least has a starting point...
Now I've added another meeting of an online friend, she is both a PhoenixMommie and fellow blogger over at My So Called Life. Crystal and I met at a local restaurant. She is very nice and I enjoyed meeting her. If you haven't you should check out her blog, I enjoy it. I even look forward to going to lunch again!

I hope to one day meet some other online friends in person too!

22 December 2008

The Cold Threshold

This week there are TWO, yes TWO winter storms coming through. Now winter storms will not be bringing snow to our area but our surrounding will get some. We will just get clouds and rain (woohoo...no complaining from me!). I do think my cold threshold is somewhat higher now, used to cold wasn't until it was in the 30's. Now it's more like low 50's. I am not really complaining about this because I just enjoy being cold. I just wanted to wear some sweaters and be comfortable so I really don't care if I wear sweaters because it's 30-something or 50-something! That doesn't bug me.

We went to the Zoo last night to see the ZooLights. It was pretty cool. It was about mid-50's. Perfect actually, I was able to wear a sweater and was comfortable. But there were so many people with big jackets, hats and scarves on. I chuckled.

Well I am happy that it's going to be cloudy for Christmas, it will make it seem more seasonal then wearing short sleeves and its' sunny and warm out.

19 December 2008

The Friday Before Christmas

And it's Friday Fill-ins!

1. Said the night wind to the little lamb, do you hear what I hear? Do you hear it? What the heck is that noise?

2. The first Noel, the angel did say, you better get your act together because someone is watching.

3. I wish there was snow all Over the hills and everywhere.

4. It came upon the midnight clear, that glorious song of old.

5. Have a few drinks and , Let your heart be light.

6. And the thing that will make them ring is the carol that you sing when you sing with someone else, because you really can't carry a tune.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to making cut out cookies with the kids, tomorrow my plans include having some friends over and having some fun and Sunday, I want to relax a bit, work on a Heritage Maker project and going to Zoo Lights!

18 December 2008

I Am Grateful

I have a lot to be grateful for right at this moment. I still have a job. The company is going through layer by layer and laying people off. I made the cut. While we were waiting to hear the outcome I was sort of unsure of what I really wanted to happen to me. In one way I would LOVE to have a breather, a break, some actual time off but on the flip side of that after my breather I would have to find a job and that just blows. So yesterday before my phone call where I would find out which was I was going I decided that whatever happened to me was going to be the right thing. There really was no other choice in how to think about it anymore. So I have a job and that is what should have happened. This morning I woke up with a renewed feeling of being grateful. Grateful that I have a job, Leo has a kick ass job, and we have everything we need right now. I feel lucky and I do feel extremely happy.

I have realized a lot of things lately. I am a little slow on the uptake sometime just because of my pessimistic ways and I am trying to be better although I don't think it will ever go away 100%! I realized that things don't just happen. I can't just sit around and EXPECT things to happen for me. And just sit there and focus on the fact that they are not happening or things are not going the way I expect them to is not really doing me any good at all. I need to take a vested interest in what I want to happen in my life (this may seem excessively obvious to some of you and you're probably thinking jeez she is dense but I do KNOW this, it's putting it into practice that takes effort), whether it is something I can literally control by going to talk to someone or just use positive projection to make it happen. So this is my early new year's resolution, I'm going to keep this up. I'm going to keep up my happiness and positive thoughts.

17 December 2008

Lots O' Lights

Here are some pictures from the Opryland Hotel in Nashville. We enjoy going and are always amazed at the amount of lights.

16 December 2008

No Longer Lost

We are big Lost fans in this house. Leo and I have been watching it since it started back in 2004. We, however, totally missed season 4 in the midst of our move to Arizona and then all the sickness that fell upon our house every week.

Then we tried to watch them online. And while it's a great concept and is good to catch up on one episode if needed, trying to watch an entire season online is just a pain in the behind. So I bought the season on DVD. But it wasn't season 4 on DVD it was season 3 which we did see all of and we really didn't need on DVD. So I just resorted to being behind when I thought the 5th season of Lost was going to start again in September of this year. I was delighted to be wrong (an amazing and extremely infrequent happening I might add...) that season 5 did not start until Jan 09 and the real season 4 was being released on DVD in December. Yay!

So we have watched most of season 4 and are up to the finale now. I will say watching them on DVD is the best way to do it, you don't even have to fast forward through the commercials!
Some questions have been answered and more raised. I hope season 5 gives up some more goods.

If you're not a Lost fan, I would suggest it. You can now get seasons 1-4 on DVD and if you start now and have a kick ass Lost marathon you'll be caught up by January!

15 December 2008

It's Finally Mine...I Mean His

Little Man is growing up. He is not little anymore, like baby little. I miss him like that. And now we make another step farther away from babyhood. He is getting his own bed. I have been lusting after this bed for what feels like before he was born. I just love it and I have some obsession with him having it. And now after January 13th, he will.

Here it is in all its beautiful Pottery Barn Kids glory:

Soon this beautiful beast will be taking up 3/4 of Little Man's tiny bedroom. Now hopefully he'll stay in it!

13 December 2008


So Little Man has started ending all his sentences with OK? It is really kind of funny. I'm not sure where he picked it up.

Sweet Girl has been adding a 'y' to all her words. It is not really funny and is annoying. I'm not sure where she picked that up either.

I imagine they picked it up at school. I can see the draw of homeschooling, if I didn't have to do the teaching it would be perfect...
We did, however, find a cool charter school that will probably be our pick for 1st grade and up. It's called Eagles Aerie. It's right up our alley and really focuses on academics and the basis of how our country was founded. I bet they don't leave out 'Under God' when they say the Pledge of Allegiance! They have the Six 'A's that make their school unique. And I just love this one:
America - Eagle's Aerie School is strongly dedicated to the purpose of instilling in the minds and hearts of our students a knowledge of and respect for the ideals and values that America was founded upon.
To bad all schools don't focus on that...but I guess they might offend someone (if you're offended then you might want to remember where you are)

I'm off to make the kids lunchy (as Sweet Girl has said), OK? (as Little Man would say). Enjoy your weekend!

12 December 2008

Back To The Fill-Ins!

After a hiatus since I am a slacker poster while on vacation I am finally back in to the Friday Fill-In routine!

1. Friends and family are what makes life so much more entertaining.

2. Here's to good health; it's well worth the effort.

3. I'm ready for my parents to get to Arizona.

4. Vera Wang (or fresh scotch tape) is one of my favorite perfumes or aftershaves or smells.

5. The oldest ornament I have is one of my husband's childhood creations.

6. Take some beer, limeade, and vodka, mix it all together and you have some yummo summer beer a nice refreshing drink on a warm day.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to hanging out with some friends at their new house, tomorrow my plans include going to see Twilight again (go ahead and laugh at me) and Sunday, I want to have fun at Leo's company surprise Christmas party!

10 December 2008

Mr. Independent

We are in full on independence mode for Little Man. If I could get paid for every time he said 'I do it', I would be rich.
He has to do EVERYTHING. I am not sure I remember Sweet Girl being this bad. He has to get in and out of the car and truck by himself. And Lord forbid you try to assist him.
And if you don't let him do it he throws a wicked fit. Example being I didn't let him get on the moving sidewalk by himself at the airport. He cried the entire thing as he kept repeating over and over 'I do it'. He literally would have walked all the way back to the beginning of it just so he could get on without me holding his hand. Oh he was pissed.

Determined he is.
And stubborn too...

I know it's normal 2 year old behavior...so I am not looking forward to him being 3!

09 December 2008

My Struggle With Religion...

I was raised Catholic. I challenged it when I was in high school. More so to be defiant then to really challenge whether or not God existed or not. I used to torture my teachers (at the Catholic school no less) that I didn't believe in God, etc. I know...it was mean.
Going to Catholic school really made me dislike the whole "organized" religion aspect of religion so I stepped away and stopped going to church pretty much. Heck, Leo and I didn't even have a religious ceremony for our wedding and we were kind of upset that the lady officiating our wedding didn't respect our wishes and not say the "prayer" she wanted to.

However, after having Sweet Girl and looking back on all the things in our life that happened up until that point I did realize that there has to be something greater looking out for me. Everything always worked out for the best in most of our difficult situations and I'm sorry I believe in luck but it just has to be more than that because I am just not THAT lucky. Anyway, we tried going to a Methodist church while still in TN and it was a nice church and I liked it. BUT every time I went, I would sit there and be overcome with guilt and the feeling that I was betraying something. Obviously the Catholics had an impact with their messages. So now we had a dilemma. Leo did not want to attend Catholic church and really I didn't either, but I also didn't want to feel guilty about GOING to church. It just seemed wrong.
So I stopped looking and put it on hold and thought to myself: Well I believe and I'll have my own conversations with God and thank Him daily for all he has given me. And I have. But I think I really want to go to church.
I read the book The Purpose of Christmas on our flight back to AZ and it was a really great book. If you haven't read it, I would suggest it. It's a short quick read. I have a really hard time being able to understand how you can just turn over your life to God and all that your troubles, worries, etc will be better if you accept Jesus as your Savior. This started another dilemma in my head; if I can't do that or I'm not sure HOW to do that, does that mean I won't benefit? Is this an all or nothing thing? I can't believe it's all or nothing otherwise everyone that goes to church would all be nice and never mean and that surely doesn't happen. So I am now on my hunt again for a church that can help me achieve this or ate least get me as close as I can.
I have this issue with live music at a church. I found a couple around us that I thought looked like it would be a good place but they all have a full band and I don't know, that just doesn't' work for me.
So the search continues.
So sorry for my totally random post about this...

08 December 2008

We're Paying Someone Next Year

Leo and I have a horrible time with OUTDOOR decorating at Christmas. We basically suck at this part. I think the inside of my house looks pretty damn good. Our tree kicks ass, we have garlands and wreaths and snowmen and white tree things. It looks GOOD. The outside looks OK this year as well but next year I want lights on the house and Leo doesn't like the roof so we figured in order to get awesomeness on the outside of the house we'll pay someone who is good and ENJOYS doing it.

Here is a recap of our troubles outside:
We were going to do those snazzy icicle lights one year. But they wouldn't hang down and I got two different cord colors. And then we couldn't get the hooks to stay on the gutters. What a serious pain. We gave up.

We tried to do garland on the columns outside our house. Didn't work.

We resorted to just getting those cool deers that are lit. MISTAKE. Have you ever tried to put those damn things together? OMG. We got some on sale at Lowe's last year. They were cool looking. By the time we were done putting them together the doe had a huge gaping hole in her side that looks like we used her for target practice or sucker punched her. And her neck made some horrible creaking noise when it moved. No doubt due to the troubles we had putting her together. The buck he kept falling over, probably due to the troubles putting his stupid legs on. I hate those deer now. There was grapevine parts and the sparkle things all over the garage too. They were left in TN with Leo's aunt and uncle. They got lucky they didn't have to put them together.

This year we got a snowman that changes colors. Again cool in theory until you have to put them together. After I don't know 2 hours of trying, we finally get this thing together. Leo told it multiple times 'I hate you' since it was giving us such grief. It's now staked in the ground. If it falls over it will probably come apart and will just go into the recycle bin.

I can decorate all day long inside, but forget it on the outside.

Back To Normal?

Well I'm back to work, Leo's back at work and the kids are back at school. Hopefully this means that things are back to normal and I will resume my regular blog posting.
I have missed writing posts! And I have really missed getting comments. Hopefully I still have some readers left...

I'll be back again shortly to post something about our decorations for Christmas.

01 December 2008

White Stuff

I feel horribly behind and somewhat lost without my daily post. I enjoy the time it takes to do my blog every day but weekends usually. I am also behind on reading some of my favorites listed over there on the right side down a little ways. I wish I could tell you that the reason for my lack of posts is due to our jet setting ways but really that's not it. Maybe a tad as we drive all over visiting family and friends but the biggest challenge on daily posting is the dial-up Internet at my parents. I know they are also not a fan of it either, but alas as I told my dad it's better than no Internet at all. I tried to find an unsecured wireless network around the neighborhood but everyone got smart and locked them down (damn!!) so dial-up it is.

And today was C-O-L-D and there was even some spitting of snow!! Sometimes big flakes and sometimes little sleet balls. But it was the white stuff and I was excited to see it. No accumulation though. And it was one of those days were when you come in from being outside your face and hands have that wonderful burning feeling. Yes I know you're probably thinking what a nut I am but I just love that. Leo is ready to get back to his above normal temperatures and sun (it was 85 and sunny when we left and 19 and cloudy when we arrived last week). I am content and happy with the pretty cloudy grey/blue sky.

We had our pictures taken yesterday as well. It was a great session and I think we got some great family shots. I'm so excited to send out my Christmas cards this year. With the great pictures and the cool cards from Heritage Makers I am ready to get them out into the mail. It was rainy and cold yesterday too, but we still got some great shots. If you're in the Middle TN area I would highly suggest the photographer we used. She's AWESOME. Her name is Lauren Gill. Her website is www.LaurenGillPhotography.com , she is great with the kids and is just wonderful to work with. I keep trying to get her to come out to AZ!!

Well I will try to update more later. We are going to the Opryland Hotel tomorrow night to see the lights, it's pretty cool. I'll take some photos to share. Also we've gotten to eat at all the places we've missed. All dietary restrictions were left in Phoenix and I have eaten whatever I've wanted here. I took pictures so I'll do a post of our trip all in food references! HA. Cheese dip from Las Palmas, biscuits from Loveless, pancakes from the Pancake Pantry! Yummy... and a definite reason to hit the gym hardcore when I get back home.