Wednesday, January 28, 2009

My Favorite Song

I LOVE all music... seriously, if you found my Ipod... you would never know what to expect of the owner... I like it all... classical, country, rap, hip-hop, pop, Hawaiian, Christian, rock, oldies, International ... you name it...

This is my favorite song...

Take a listen... I promise you will not be disappointed!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

"Ah-Ha" Moment

.... So, When I opened Lilli's backpack on Friday morning to make sure everything was in order for school, I found a piece of paper that I had missed on Wednesday afternoon. It was this:

A true "Ah-Ha" moment... YES... I already know she mastered the art of cutting thanks! : )
Lilli is now having structured cutting sessions (GREAT idea Joe!) at the kitchen table with all kind of fun paper and yarn to cut... for as long as Lilli wants to cut... to get it out of her system! The whole time we go over scissor and cutting rules. Oh, If I would have only found this on Wednesday afternoon.... I MIGHT have been able to save the hair????????????

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Putting the Rosy Glasses Away for Today's Post...

Ok... I admit it! I really only blog about the good stuff...keep it happy... keep it light! Only air out the "clean laundry" here. So.... you all probably don't know that my Lilli girl should have a legal name change to "Curious George"! Serriously... this girl is very busy! ALWAYS busy... always checking everything out... paying close attention to what everyone is doing... so she can go back later and do it better. It "tests" my parenting skills at times... basically I have gotten really good at deep breathing... and calling my mom to whine! (we never really grow up do we???? )

Anyway... to keep it real... I will go into the reality of my day. You ready?

Today started with Lilli bringing Milli (our new overwhelmingly relaxed and forgiving cat) to me ... only problem was she was carrying her by her two front legs... NOT COOL. REALLY NOT COOL as mom (me) has put her foot down and put Lilli on a 3 foot restraining order when it comes to the cat. We go over it every morning... every afternoon... every evening... OK>OK> every 5 minutes. "Lilli, do you understand... don't bother Milli. If you would like to pet her gently, tell mommy and we will sit together and pet her nicely. Do you understand sweetie?"

Lilli's reply, "Yes Mommy. I don't touch the cat. I don't chase the cat. I don't pick up the cat" . Me (in my head) "Finally, she gets it... A breakthrough. The cat is safe now"

Lilli brings Milli to me - remember by carrying her by her two front legs... to sit and pet her gently.... back to square one!!! Coffee.... Coffee... Tequila... No... just kidding! A phone call to my mom for parenting advice.... meanwhile Lilli has gone up to play nicely in the play room while i am on the phone with my mother.... play nicely... YEP.... that is my story... "Thanks mom, I appreciate all the great parenting advice ... FROM 3 STATES AWAY... almost as good as Joe's parenting advice from ACROSS THE PACIFIC!"

Go upstairs to see what my sweet, precious, innocent, meek, mild, Lilli is doing in the playroom... and trip on the carpet as I walk into the girls room. Wait... trip on the carpet as I walk in the room.... there is no carpet when I walk in the room... there is ... or was ... a carpet between the two twin beds.... hmmmmmmmm.... there is a huge lump under this carpet... what could that be??? Oh yes... a large amount of white powder.... As I am not on anyone's "list" I assume it is not a dangerous white powder... and the smell is familiar... so I don't call the hazard team in... YES... it is baby powder... a whole bunch of baby powder... Wow... that is cool... they sure can fit a lot of baby powder in one plastic container... OK... look how sweet... Lilli is dressed up as Cinderella... you can't be mad at Cinderella....

Clean up all the baby powder that Lilli has squeezed out under the carpet upstairs.... well, not really under the carpet... she actually moved the carpet... to cover the MOUNTAIN of baby powder. Oh... this is fun! Coffee... Coffee... another phone call to my mom. I ask my parents to visit while I go to therapy... well, therapy at the local Mexican restaurant... therapy that comes with a nice rim of salt! : ) They decline... My mom says dump the coffee pot and switch to hot tea! It is more calming!

OK... It is 9am... YES... it is just 9AM!!!! I can do this... I am a good mother... I have proved myself already... see the well behaved older children... see them????

Wait.... while I was picturing the well behaved older children and smiling I lost Lilli... where is she? Oh... she is upstairs in Joey's room trying to reverse engineer his new XBOX... "Don't touch that sweetie... that is Joey's... by the way... why are you in Joey's room... isn't this room off limits? This is where the cat can rest knowing that she won't be lovingly harassed!" Wait... Lilli is dressed up at Snow White... you can't get mad at Snow White... and man does her hair look perfect with that Snow White Red Bow... maybe she should be Snow White for Halloween next year... Save a few dollars... I already have the costume...

Put the XBOX back together and back on Joey's shelf... hope he doesn't notice... YIKES!

OK... it is now noon... and I have made it a few hours with no mishaps... thanks to Dora and Kai Lan and a basket full of toys. I can feed the littles lunch and then fall on the couch for an hour or so... even though the kitchen floor really needs to be mopped.

Today chicken noodle soup is on the menu. It will be an easy lunch as both Abby and Lilli love Chicken Noodle Soup. I am so close to a nap... YEAH! Wait.... Lilli is giving me the look.... the look that means.... "You expect me to eat this???" "Lilli, sweetie, that is Chicken Noodle Soup... you LOVE Chicken Noodle Soup... you ask for it all the time. Eat it sweetie... it will make you grow up big and strong like Joey and Holly, and Daniel". "Mommy, I don't think I like the yellow stuff". "What yellow stuff sweetie... it is just plain ole' Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup... you LOVE it... EVERYBODY loves it...I promise... you always want Abby's leftovers... go ahead... taste it... I promise you like it". She finally takes the smallest taste that is humanly possible... all the while scrunching up her nose and eyes and mouth to show me how awful what I am forcing her to do is. "Nope Mommy, I don't like the yellow stuff". Deep Breath... remember to pick your battles... that is good parenting advice... "Ok Lilli, eat your apple sauce and your Cheetos... wait, you already ate your Cheetos... and wait, the whole bag of Cheetos is now empty... when did you do that... I was watching the whole time... never left the kitchen... hmmmm...

"Ok, go upstairs and potty and I will be right up to tuck you in. Tell Abby to go with you... she is upside down on the couch playing her leapster". (lately, that is the only place that Abby is... I am so ready for it to warm up outside!!!) Lilli gives me the Miss America Pageant sweet look ... bats her eyelashes at me... thanks me for lunch and off she goes.

Look at that... Lilli is already tucked in. Wait.. Lilli is never tucked in???? That is odd... red flag goes up... but not for long... OH.... look she has her princess crown on... how cute... and the covers are pulled up all the way to her chin... and she is grinning. "Goodnight Mommy, I love you, I need to clean the bathroom". "Yes sweetie, Mommy does need to clean the bathroom... maybe tomorrow... But today... I am taking a nap! You go to sleep and have sweet dreams and I will see you in a few hours". I'll miss her while she naps...

I walk out thinking how delightful Lilli is for getting in her bed today... she must have known how bad I needed that nap... she must realize that I don't sleep well when daddy is not here. She is only 4, but she is brilliant... I am sure she gets it... and just wants me to have a nice nap today. Yes... that is why she was already in the bed with her covers pulled way up high... she is so sweet....

Wow... even Abby is getting into Daniel's bed for her nap (they don't nap in the same room... you try it... 2 giggly girls... nope .... they don't nap... they chit chat and GOSSIP... yes... a 4 year old and a 5 year old GOSSIP about their school mates when they nap in the same room... so Abby naps in Daniel's room).

"Goodnight Abby, have a good nap". "Goodnight Mommy, When I don't suck my thumb anymore, I can have a laptop of my own, right?". "Sure sweetie... we will sell your leapster for a down payment on that laptop". I'm not worried... I have a few years to save for that laptop... as that thumb is staying in that mouth. This is one of the things I would bet on!

Oh... it is finally MY nap time... where should I nap... my bed... a REAL nap... or the couch... kind of a nap... but not the kind that I would feel guilty about because I did not get in the bed - under the covers... hmmmmm... decisions decisions... Wait... It is now 1pm and I am still in my PJS... I have not showered. I can't take a nap... I need a shower. Augh.... Oh Well... I must maintain my personal hygiene so upstairs I go.

That is odd... my bedroom door is open.... wait... my bathroom door is open AND the bathroom light is on.... I did not do that. Who did that... Wait.... what is all that black stuff under my bathroom rug... and why is my bathroom rug moved over there... WAIT... that is hair... lots of hair... beautiful black shiny princess hair...


Fast Forward a few hours....

"Thank you so much for squeezing us into your busy day between your 3:00 and your 4:00 appointments. I promise I only left her alone for 4 minutes... I don't know how she could have done this in such a short amount of time... My room is off limits. My bathroom is off limits. The scissors are off limits... and they were hidden ... UP HIGH... look , she is short... she couldn't possibly reach the scissors. Please just do your best to even up the sides. Yes, I know the bangs are pretty much a loss... but can you make a cute bob out of the sides.... well... that side is a little longer... but wow... she really cut that side... I am so glad her ear is still intact. and Yes Lilli, Mulan does cut her hair with a sword (thank goodness we don't have one of those in the house) and yes she does save China... but that is a cartoon.... we don't need to COPY everything."

... as the shampoo bottle says... Rinse, Repeat...
that is what we do... Sleep (or Recharge) , Repeat! : )

So that is reality at the Judge house with a very smart very curious little girl named Lilli who used to have "beautiful big princess hair" (that is what she called it) bu now has a very sensible slightly off kilter bob...and some stylish punk rocker bangs! I am still hoping it grows out really fast because she does look super cute in the snow white costume.... : )

Tomorrow I will go back to my rosy colored version of our reality... and hopefully get a NAP! ... check back tomorrow and I might add a few pictures .... : ) She is still SO CUTE even with the funky hair!!!

THIS Makes Me Angry....

I received a call this morning at 8:20am... started with a nice female voice recording stating, "Due to the current economical situation, your bank card is offering a lower interest rate. This offer will expire soon, please press 1 to speak to a live operator".... hhhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm I thought.

You know me... I pressed 1.... A sleepy foreign female voice came on the line and asked which card I would like to lower the interest on... I asked her... "You called me, which card of mine is offering lower interest" to which she replied "We are working with many banks, You need to give me you name, address, card information, identifying information for security purposes and I will tell you if your card is part of the program"... WHAT???? to which I replied. "May I have your full name and phone number and I will do 1 of 2 things... call you back to verify that this is legit...or Call the FBI and report your criminal activity"... to which she replied by simply hanging up the phone! SCAM!

This really BOTHERS me as I know people will fall for this... I am so OVER bad people that take advantage of others.... what is it that makes them think it is ok to just take advantage of someone and cheat, lie, steel.... I don't GET it!

It is nearly 2 hours later and I am still angry....

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

My Last Christmas Decoration Was Put Away Until Next Year...

...That decoration being my Christmas Blog Design! I LOVED it... But alas, it was time to move on! Not too sad as I so enjoy working with Danielle from Blogs By Danielle.

It is such a fun process... from picking out a digital scrapbook kit (there are millions!!!), to waiting patiently (or not) for the first rendition of the header, to the excitement of opening the blog with the new design for the first time!

Guess what Danielle so graciously offered today???? She offered a $10 "blog-over" discount for the first 2 of you that contact her after viewing my new design! Her prices are amazingly LOW to start with... I know how much time she puts in... as she invited me along for the "ride" via IM last night and this afternoon. She really cares about each and every design and each and every blogger's satisfaction!

Go take a look at all of her work... her blog is set up to easily view her different style designs. I am sure that you will find many that you LOVE! I wonder if I am one of the first 2 to respond, if she will give me the 10$ discount on my next redo??? : )

As for me... THANKS DANIELLE! As always... you were able to create something better than I ever imagined! I like having a beautiful blog... it makes me happy!!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

New President and Retail Therapy

Today is the day that I will have to take a deep breath with my VERY Conservative VERY Republican lungs and put all my hopes and wishes behind our 44th Commander in Chief - President Obama. My hope is that he leads our country with strength, dignity, courage, morals, and knowledge. My dream is for a bright future under the guidance of President Obama.

He has my full support... but... I sure hope he rethinks a recent cabinet decision and appoints a Secretary of the Treasury that actually understands the Tax Code (ie... pays his own taxes correctly) and does not hire an illegal as a nanny!!! Please???? and maybe even an Attorney General who hasn't made a mint off of handling a case with ties to a terrorist organization.

OK... enough politics for me!


...On to a much more fun topic... retail therapy!

After dropping Joe at the airport Sunday, I headed straight to Target for some retail therapy. Grocery shopping, for some strange reason, makes me feel better! (I think I have mentioned that before) This time it did not help much... The poor young guy at the deli counter received more than her bargained for when he asked me if I was ok... "you look sad ma'am, has your day been ok?"... to which a few more tears fell and I told him I would be fine. Poor thing... the look on his face was priceless!

I ventured from the grocery section to the other parts of Target also... and found some cute little girl summer clothes. Funny - summer clothes hanging on the racks - it snowed yesterday... YES!!! Snow in Alabama! They won't wear them now but I did pick up some cute shirt dresses for Lilli and plaid bermuda shorts and cropped sweaters for Abby to stash for later... as the prices and cute factor could not be beat!!! I'll add some pictures later if I can get them to model!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Thanks for Keeping My Family Safe...

I know the approval ratings are low; however, I am thankful to President Bush for keeping my family safe for his tenure in the White House. No easy task after the paradigm shift that changed our world in 2001. I saw all the effort first hand while posted overseas... a monumental amount of work goes into keeping Americans safe at home and abroad. President Bush never rested... he never let down his guard.

So I will take a moment to say Thank You to President and Mrs. Bush for their service to our great country!!!

Making My Own Coffee Again...

I woke up this morning, slowly made my way to the kitchen only to remember that I had to prepare my own coffee. Not a huge task to complete... but one of the many thoughtful things that Joe does each morning. I have been waking up each day for the last month to girl-ee giggles as Abby and Lilli race to my bedside proclaiming, "Daddy has your coffee ready"! (He even brought some of my favorite coffee from Australia...It's Italian but not sold in the US... waahhh!) Yes... Joe took over "get everyone ready for school" duties and allowed me to sleep in for a month! I am afraid my body will go into shock when my alarm rings at 5:20 tomorrow morning!

Joe is over the Pacific now. He should be back to reality in about 4 hours... touching down in Sydney and making his way to Canberra to work. We are hoping that he will be able to "stop by" for a few days in March on the back end of a work trip to DC that he has.

The GREAT news is that we are halfway DONE with our year without him. The next 6 months will surely fly... right???

Saturday, January 10, 2009

What Has Green Eyes and A Furry Tail ???

Milli .... our new cat!

We decided that we are settled enough to add a family pet to the chaos! So we contacted a local rescue group earlier this week... filled out the "adoption" application and today, our newest family member joined the clan!

Her "shelter name" was Tammy Faye ... We KNEW that HAD to be changed!!! I was thinking Piper or Willow... but nope... Holly decided this beautiful green eyed creature was a Milli. Funny... I think of Milli Vanilli every time I have heard the kids call her today... I keep trying to make myself think of something like Sweet old Aunt Milli... but I am afraid... Milli Vanilli is what comes to mind!

Friday, January 9, 2009

I'll be back...

... but for now, I am enjoying every second possible with my hubby! I have him for just a few more days and then I will be back to regular blogging... I would love to say that we are just gazing into each other's eyes... but in reality... Joe is checking the boxes on my "honey do list"... ok ok... I get a kiss or two between each task... but there are just so many light bulbs to change, pictures to hang, filters to clean, etc etc etc... you get the idea!

The kids are also enjoying their dad ... having him come home just shows us all how much we miss him when he is gone! This is way harder than I ever imagined it would be!
Joe and I did take a little break to see "Marley and Me" the other night... it was great! But... I recommend taking a box of Kleenex for each person! There was not a dry eye in the packed theater... in fact, the older gentleman behind me contributed to the great Alabama flood that we are experiencing at the moment! Really Touching!!!