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Friday, February 27, 2009


Apparently the bad economy is truly affecting EVERYTHING in our lives. I was just watching the news and learned that DIVORCE RATES are dropping. Are you kidding me? The reason? People cannot AFFORD to divorce because they cannot sell their homes. Wow! I did not see that coming. They were interviewing couples who are coexisting in the same home until they can afford to divorce.
I know there are definately legitimate cases for divorce, and if you are going through that pain, I am so sorry! I also believe, in general, our nation tends to dive headfirst toward divorce when problems arise . "The grass is always greener"attitude instead of realizing you may be trading one set of problems for another. I pray that some of these couples who are forced to "wait" to divorce might find reconciliation with each other before it is too late.
It is weird, but as bad and scary our current economy is, I keep feeling it is having positive affects as well. Maybe not on our pocket books, but maybe on our spirit! I know it has made me think about what is really important in life! Our heads know, but our hearts don't always believe that materialism really does not bring happiness. That is something I have learned in the last 3 years of not working and not having anything I wanted at my fingertips! In many ways, I am much happier now. By the way, I learned the term for reformed fashionistas. Apparently, I am a "Recessionista". Love it!
So, here's to the recession! Let it work on our hearts and make us better people! So tell me, what do you think? Is the recession changing your outlook on life at all? Are you staying with a man you can't stand simply because you cannot afford to leave him? Is it helping or hurting your spirit? I want to hear.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Bootcamp from You Know Where!

Several of you have asked me how my workout, weight-loss, facial, fashion, 28 day extravaganza is going in my preparation for my trip to Los Angeles. Well, let me tell you, I am getting nervous as week number 1 just flew by leaving me with only 21 days to create the "new me". My workouts have been very consistent which is unusual for me. I feel I am seeing some great results already! The icecream at night, however, has not stopped which I think might be affecting my 2 pound a week weight loss goal!
This week has been slightly different since my baby Natalie had a 103 degree fever. I wasn't sure, but didn't think it would be the BEST idea to take her to the gym nursery. I thought a few mothers might not appreciate me too much, and my poor baby would have cried the entire time wondering why her insensitive mother just dropped her off to a perfect stranger when she felt so terrrible.
After being couped up at home for a few days, last night I decided to go try the "Bootcamp" class at my gym after Tom got home. Not the best idea I have had in a while. I learned something very valuable about myself in this "Bootcamp" class. I was enlightened to the fact that my psyche could NEVER have handled the MILITARY! I seriously almost walked out of this class because I felt like crying the whole time.
As the instructor yelled her instructions at us and then said, "YES?? YES??? NO??" (what does she mean by this anyway?) I felt my anxiety growing. And then she would start counting down when we were jump-roping, and heaven forbid you were too out of breath to count with her at an audible yell or she would make you go another minute until you could sputter out the numbers at a decible she could hear. We were doing those leg lifts you do on the floor that burn your buns and legs so bad like from "Buns of Steel" or something, and she would scream at us "DO NOT LOWER YOUR LEG TO THE FLOOR AND DO NOT STOP!!!!" "YES? YES? NO???" I was seriously afraid that if my muscle did give out and my leg fell to the floor that she would call my name out and make me do another 100 leg lifts. Shear FEAR drove me to complete every unbearable exercise. I wanted to get up and run out screaming NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!
I usually LOVE my workouts and the classes I attend. I guess I don't enjoy being motivated by fear. I just don't think I am massechistic enough to put my emotions through that again.

I will tell you what does motivate me to workout! Insults from my mother usually do the trick. She has tortured me with her innocent comments over the years. I knew I needed to start working out again, but the final straw was her response when I asked to borrow a sweater while visiting her over Christmas.
"Well, honey, its just that you are bigger than me now, and I am afraid you will stretch out my sweaters!" Because wool stretches really far and doesn't go back to it's original shape at all.
" DO WHAT????? Bigger than you???" Okay, I am still not over it. I have not been bigger than my mother since college when she was doing church aerobics and I had gained the freshman 15.
So, I finally convinced her to let me borrow this old sweater she had and when I came out to the kitchen with it on she said, "So, ummm, honey, do you LIKE the way that looks on you?"
"Yes, I do thank you!" If I didn't like it, would I be wearing it???
I joined the gym 2 weeks later and am determined to be so thin the next time she sees me that she says, "Honey, I just really don't like it when you get TOO thin! It worries me! I think your face looks better with a little meat on it. You know your face is long and your jaw is so pronounced when you get too thin!" Then I will know I have arrived at my ideal weight again!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

OH for the Love of Pink!

The other day while driving Will to his 2 year old tumbling class it occured to me that I was about to interact with a bunch of other moms, and I looked like I usually look at 5 pm after a long day of kids pulling my hair, drooling on me, wiping their noses on my shirt. I was disheveled to say the least! I did what every woman does when they look in the review mirror and realize they are as pale and worn out looking as their husband's oldest t-shirt. I pulled out lipstick. I didn't REALLY pay attention to the color nor did I look in the mirror while applying.
At some point during the drive, I looked back at Will. He gasped audibly and said, "Lookit Mommy!!! I LOVE your pink face!" I looked at myself in the mirror to realize that my flourescent pink lips were indeed making quite a statement against my pale unmade-up face. Emergency! Blotting tissue pllleeease!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Cookies Anyone?

Have you ever been caught with your hand in a cookie jar? Last night after an exhausting hour of putting both children to bed and convincing my son he REALLY DID want to follow his sleep rules and stay there, I felt I deserved a reward of some kind. Abandoning my 28 day diet plan for just one little cookie seemed fair considering the circumstances. I mean, one cookie can't really hurt weight loss, can it?
So, as I stood there in my pantry, reaching my hand into the luscious bag of lemon cookies, BOOM, it all went black. Seriously, I am talking BLACK. I could not see ANYTHING. I felt like I had just gone blind or been struck by lightning or something. I was temporarily so confused until I realized we had just had a power outage and that I really hadn't just been struck by God for trying to eat one little eansy cookie! Apparently, I yelled to my husband, "Honey, I am stuck!" What I meant by that, I am not sure. I probably meant to say, "Honey, I am in struck by lightning!" I did not eat a cookie last night. I am not sure I will ever go near that bag again.
As for our power outage situation.....we lived by candlelight for 2 hours, dealt with 2 very freaked out kids for an hour of it, finally dozed off to sleep and were awakened by sudden bright lights and sounds that had all been left on. It felt like, "Let there be Light!" because it came on as suddenly as it went off. All in all we survived and other than the fact we missed an episode of "24" we were mildly entertained by the situation.

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Thanks to all of you who emailed me comments! Thanks also for letting me know you were having difficulty posting comments on my page. I think I corrected the problem! Will you please try to comment to let me know it is working? Thank you friends!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Feel the Burn!

Would you ever rub jalapeno juice all over your body? Or how about pepper spray? Maybe acid? Last night my calves were REALLY sore from a step class I had taken on Saturday. I got the bright idea to get out my Arbonne herbal muscle relief cream that I haven't touched in 2 years. It is supposed to work sort of like Bengay and help sore muscles. I smeared it into both calves really well, then smeared some all over my husband's chest (and we are talking I did not miss a spot), then massaged it into my calves some more, then Tom rubbed it into his legs as well. We were having a muscle cream party in our bed! Little did we know that the party had just begun.
The burn took a while to start, but once it did, IT DID NOT STOP!!!! Unfortunately, it had worked it's way onto some sensitive areas as well, do to not getting hands clean before touching....anyway, my face was burning as well....I won't mention where else. It was a disaster. We both fell asleep breathing through the pain of what felt like a chemical burn on our skin. We both woke up at 1 am in SEVERE burning mode. Tom took a shower, I soaked in baking soda. We were on the computer googling "burn on skin" or anything we could think of. Tom said, "Honey, I am ready to head to the E.R.!! I am really scared!"
Apparently, the "active ingredients" in this muscle cream became REALLY ACTIVE the last two years. Either that or someone snuck into our house to poison us.
We finally fell back to sleep, breathing through the pain again, and woke up this morning pretty much relieved of the burn. Although I swear I can still feel it. All I can say is, I forgot all about my sore muscles!

Sunday, February 22, 2009


How do you compare apples to oranges? Is it possible that while eating an apple and completely enjoying it, you could suddenly have such a longing for the sweet citrus of an orange that you want to put the apple down mid-bite to delight in the orange? Comparing apples to oranges is so cliche, but it is the only way I can think of to compare rural Southeast Georgia to Los Angeles. Today, I am longing for L.A.
I had big plans to write something funny today, but my mood is pensive. Maybe it is because I cannot get L.A. off my mind. Tom and I shared a bottle of wine last night after putting the babies to bed and we took a walk down memory lane. The biggest life changing events took place for me in Santa Monica, California.
1. I advanced to the best job of my life.
2. I met and MARRIED my amazing husband. For those of you who met me already married, you have no idea what a miracle it really is that I finally dated and married the RIGHT kind of guy.
3. I gave birth to my first born child, the second love of my life. My little surfer boy!

Then we left. I did not intend to leave; it just happened. We traded one set of benefits for another.
Here I get to stay home with my babies. There I would work full-time. That is the biggest benefit I can think of. I have TIME with them.
What I miss?
Ocean air kissing my face while I run on the beach.
Hiking every weekend.
Pete's coffee only a walk away.
The "chill" atmosphere.
Any store you name only a stone throw away.
The taste of authentic mexican food.
Amazingly fresh farmer's market every weekend.
Main Street Santa Monica and Montana Avenue shops.
My few but special friends.

This missing is just today. Because as I prepare for our trip, I let myself remember what I loved. I may be a rare person but I REALLY LOVE L.A.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Scrounging for Food

Have you ever gone hungry? I never have by necessity, just as a self-imposed get thin quick scheme. That could change, folks. I was informed this morning by my sweet husband that after entering in all our receipts we only have $60.00 left for the month. OH MY GOSH. How on earth am I going to do that?? I started panicking at first. Seriously guys, how will I feed my family for the next week on $60.00? I am creative, but not THAT good! Then the clincher. "Oh, and don't forget you need to fill up your gas tank today." My GAS TANK? That is a $30.00 purchase right there. That leaves us $30.00 for food??? $30.00!!! I could spend that much in the dairy department alone! I've been racking my brain all day. I have had a few encouraging thoughts:

1. Will has been refusing to eat since he has been sick, so maybe I just work with that instead of fighting it! I will only feed him if he actually SAYS he is HUNGRY. The past few days when he says he will eat something, I naively make it and watch him play with it for an hour. Then he usually "accidently" knocks the plate all over my kitchen floor, so he doesn't have to eat it. No more! He will have to BEG FOR FOOD. That way I will know he is really hungry and will actually eat.

2. I have a whole diet plan laid out for myself, so I shouldn't require much to eat right? If I eat lettuce for a week it would be a great jump start on my 28 day diet plan! Oh, wait...lettuce might be too expensive!

3. I have a freezer full of chicken I just need to get creative with. "Sorry Tom. I know you said last week you are really sick of chicken...but here you go sweetie! Chicken for breakfast, lunch and dinner! Yummy!" "Oh, and Sorry, no dessert tonight! You are on a diet!"

Thankfully I do have a pretty full pantry right now, so maybe I can come up with a few more meal ideas and my current menu will get us until Monday. If all else fails, I will raid our coin jar! I do love a challenge, so let's see if I can actually make this work and not have to dip into our emergency savings. That would be really cool!
Looks like I will be shopping at the discount food store and save-a-lot until March 1st.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Self Image

"What am I going to wear?" keeps racing through my head. I thought our newly planned trip to Los Angeles to attend my friend's wedding was a brilliant idea until I remembered that I am still 18 pounds heavier than when we left. Unfortunately, I am not quite the fashionista I used to be either! Having 2 babies in 3 years has seemingly forever altered my body size. My ability to shop around for new clothing is not the same either! The last thing I want all of my friends in L.A. to think upon our return is, "What on earth happened to her?" I know it is vain. I cannot help it. Yes, I am THAT insecure about the way I look right now. Please don't judge me.

I have 28 days to rectify the situation! Here is my current strategy:
1. Go to the gym 6 out of 7 days per week for the next 4 weeks working out 2 hours per session.. That's what Gwyneth Paltrow does for her great body. Yes, I watch Oprah.
2. Lose 2 pounds per week, 8 pounds lighter than I am right now.
3. Buy the current In Style Magazine and "get a clue" by reading up.
4. Don't pack anything I own (except maybe a pair of shoes)! Hit the first cheap sidewalk boutique I see in Santa Monica after we leave the airport and purchase a few fashionable items to get me through the week.
5. Get back to using my facial system regularly so my skin has a "glow".

What is it they warn you about being a stay-at-home-mom? "Just don't let yourself go...."
Myself "went" a while ago. I am TRYING to get her back. Maybe botox would help.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Croup still exists?

"Are you going insane yet?"
Oh, good! I guess this means he didn't think I was insane before! "Not really...why, are you?" I asked. Quiet...."Why don't you just go to the couch?" I instructed.
"I hate to leave you alone with this."
This conversation took place late last night as I sat up against my pillows holding my 2 year old son against my chest as he coughed CONTINUOUSLY for hours. I did send my husband to the couch. No point in us both being awake all night. We had tried absolutely everything we could think of to help Will stop coughing. Nothing worked.
"It's croup and nothing you could have done would have helped" said the pediatrician this morning as she prescribed a nebulizer machine with saline to use hourly and a box of albuterol that we are only to use when he cannot stop coughing.
I felt relieved that she was sending us home with more than just words of comfort unlike just about every other time I have taken my sick child to the doctor. It was also good to know that though I was trying the right things, it wasn't my fault none of it was working. I guess though I am a nurse, I am not a miracle worker! I try my best to implement my nursing knowledge into the care of my children, but coughs are really scary. Really, they are!!
The strange thing is, Will and I actually did fall at asleep at some point and got about 6 hours of rest last night. My husband could not fall asleep on the couch and was up ALL NIGHT LONG.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

"Mommy, my throat hurts weally bad!"
"Oh really, Will? Where is your throat?"
His little hands rub across his chest, "Right here, mommy!" Oh, of course his "throat" hurts!
He only spent the entire day watching mommy lay on the couch with a "sore throat" I am sure he was pretty starved for attention. How do you know if a toddler legitimately has an ailment or if they are copying what they have heard from their parents? In this case, the fact that he could not properly place where his throat is located made me suspicious that he was okay.
Well, it turns out I was wrong. Will's throat ailment is probably legitamate as he ran a fever in the night and started the cough-up-a-lung hacking that Natalie had all last week. We are just spreading the love germs throughout the house.
"Will, don't drink out of Natalie's cup!!!! She is SICK!!!"
"Natalie, don't slobber on my mouth! You are SICK!!"
"Will, don't drink out of Mommy's cup!! I am SICK!!!"
"Natalie, don't sneeze in Daddy's face! You are SICK!!!"
Will climbed in our bed at 2 am with his fever and cough. Tom promptly went to the couch for the rest of the night to "avoid getting sick".
The phone just rang, "Honey, my ear is hurting really bad. It feels like someone is driving nails into my eardrum!"
"Of course it is sweetie. Your daughter has an ear infection and has drooled all over you. Your son has a cough that he hacked into your face. And your wife feels like she has been hit by a truck and she kissed you goodbye yesterday. I hope you feel better!"

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Monogram

Monogram, monogram, monogram...A true southern belle loves everything monogrammed. I guess this is one way in which I do identify with my new southern sisters.
I never really noticed much in the way of monogramming before I moved to the south besides towels in the Pottery Barn catalog. Of course there was always the cheesy highschool letter jacket that was no longer in style in the awesome 1990's! Currently, in 2009, it seems to be a vital part of existance as a mom with style. Around every corner in our tiny town is a monogram shop. Some stores have made it the mainstay of their existance by offering to monogramm every overpriced item in their store for free, essentially saving you the $8.00-$10.00 cost of monogramming it anywhere else. This suddenly making shopping at their store very appealing! I find myself purusing there often.

Serious monogramming begins at a very early age. We are talking about every baby item you can think of such as monogrammed burp cloths, bibs, dresses and jon jons, blankets, diaper bags, onesies, t-shirts and crib bedding. It continues from there to monogrammed towels, beach bags, pillowcases, waterbottles, you name it. I absolutely love it.
I wonder why it is such a craze here and not everywhere else. Or has that changed in the past 3 years? Last winter, my sister, who resides in Michigan, was picking out new bedding for her girls. I suggested she monogram their pillowcases, but she had no idea where she could take their pillowcasesto be monogrammed. Such a sad state.
I remember being young and in 5th grade. My girlfriend wanted to start a "club" that only 3 of us would be part of. Our super plan was to buy matching cashmere sweaters and have our initials monogrammed on them. That would be our way of advertising we were in a special exclusive club. My mother banned the idea immediately explaining that we would hurt far too many other girl's feelings. Is that what monogramming is? Is it our way of advertising that we are unique and special and own it? Is it pretentious or just too cute? I cannot decide. Until I do, I guess I will continue to enjoy this perk of southern living...The Monogram.