Monday, June 30, 2008

The Boys of Summer

After the incredibly busy weekend that I just experienced, I needed something to kind of pick me up on this fine Monday. And what better way to put a smile on my face, but to go trolling for pictures of some of my favorite actors? And so, ladies, please sit back and enjoy this parade of pretty faces. I know I did.

Ben Barnes - If you're not familiar with this cutie, he's the newcomer who played Prince Caspian in the newest Chronicles of Narnia movie. A movie that I've not seen yet, but you better believe will be at the top of my Netflix queue when the release date is published! He's younger than me, which I guess would put me at cougar status, but I don't care. He is H-O-T. I think it's the long hair and the British accent that just ice this lovely cupcake.

Daniel Craig - Another incredibly good looking Brit. He's the newest James Bond and a great one at that. I've only seen him in one other movie (The Golden Compass, which I slept through), but what I saw of that performance was quite good. Ok, so it could have been a rotten tomatoes performance and I probably still would have been happy.

Johnny Depp - Oh my, be still my heart. I have been crushin' on Mr. Depp for many many years. It all started with a little show called 21 Jump Street that I used to tape and watch over and over again because I couldn't get enough. And he can fake a British accent pretty darn well. I much prefer him with long hair, but my fave look was him in Chocolat. Great movie!

Orlando Bloom - Ok, so I have a serious infatuation with British actors. I admit it. I'm sure there's a support group for it. I will never forget the first time I saw Orlando. It was the first Lord of the Rings movie and I stayed through the credits so I could get his name and immediately look him up on the internet when I got home. And it's been internet stalking ever since! He's totally cute and a great actor. I am the 1 person who liked Elizabethtown and will admit it. I think it's a southern thing. And a Cameron Crowe thing.

And, of course my main squeeze, Patrick Dempsey. I've seriously crushed on him since Can't Buy Me Love. That is still one of my all time fave movies. I think part of my love affair with this guy is the fact that he totally loves his wife and kids and isn't afraid to talk about them all the time in interviews. A guy who loves his family is totally sexy.

And there you have it. Some eye candy to improve our day. Enjoy. You're welcome.

Miscellaneous Monday

This is going to be a strange and short post because my mind is completely scattered from my crazy weekend. Be sure to come visit me later tonight because I'll have a completely wonderful post that is in keeping with my hilarious and brilliant writing style. Ok, just kidding. I'm really not that self-confidant, but a girl can dream, right?!

The big news here is that I am finally relenting to much pressure prodding encouragement from my peeps here to post an actual profile picture of myself. That is my project for today (besides the mountain of laundry and dishes). So, come back later tonight and check out...ME.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Message Received

They're calling for some nasty thunderstorms here today. We had a very brief one blow through here yesterday while the kids & I were at a friend's house for a play date. I learned an important lesson when I got home.

Apparently, Chloe is not a big fan of thunderstorms. I actually already knew this, but it didn't occur to me that she would try to eat the metal doorknob in order to get out of the house to try to come find me. Lesson learned. Time to add new doorknob and doggy Prozac to the shopping list.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Fabulous Friday - The meme edition

My friend Jules posted this meme on her blog earlier this week. And because I knew I was going to be away from my computer some this week, I thought, "hey, why don't I just steal borrow this great idea from her". I mean, I love to talk about myself (obviously) and someone else is welcome to steal borrow this idea from me now. So, sit back, grab a latte and read a little more about moi.

1. What does your name mean? - Well, the literal translation is "angel messenger from god". However, I prefer "Hot mommy trapped in the body of someone who ate way too many oreos today and really needs to stop blogging and start hitting the treadmill".

2. Where was your profile picture taken? - This is my darling Chloe who is modeling out in my backyard. Chloe is my stand in model, until I can get a picture that I'm not completely embarrassed to show to the world. (For clarification, see the answer to question #1)

3. What is your current relationship status? - Happily married and mom to 2 princesses and living in a shoebox in East Tennessee. However, hubby has promised me a brand new mansion and BMW if we win the lottery tonight, so cross your fingers everyone!

4. Honestly, does your crush like you back? - Well, I would like to think that Patrick Dempsey is dreaming of me while working on the set of the newest season of Grey's Anatomy, but I'm a realist. I'm sure he's much to busy memorizing dialogue to think of me at the moment. Maybe on his break between shoots?

5. What's your current mood? - I'm very happy. I'm dreaming of my new mansion, my BMW and Patrick Dempsey.

6. What do you like the most? - Hearing my girls laugh and getting hugs for no reason at all. Thankfully, I've been getting a lot of that over the last few days, which has been wonderful. I also like a really good pomegranate martini.

7. What makes you happy? - Blogging, photography, scrapbooking, blogging, cross stitching, reading, blogging, visiting others blogs, discovering new blogs, commenting on blogs, reading comments on my blog. Ok, I really must stop now.

8. If you could go back and change something, would you? - Not one thing. I don't believe in coincidence and I know that I wouldn't be where I am today without every little thing (good, bad and REALLY ugly) that's happened along the way. It's made me who I am today, and I'm pretty happy with that person. Ok, maybe I would take back most of the oreos that I ate today, but nothing else...really.

Check the 15 minutes starts now

Oh my goodness, the day I have longed for has finally arrived. I have received my very first blogging award!
Let us pause for a moment while we view the beauty that is my very first blogging award.

While I am busy preparing my extensive acceptance speech, let me review who extended this wonderful award upon me and give you some history.

I owe this huge debt of gratitude to Michelle at Honest and Truly! Michelle & I became buds through the wonderful SITS site and I'm so thankful. Michelle is a kind soul who has 2 adorable kids (Mister Man and Little Miss) and her blog is full of REAL life with kids, hubby and neighbors that hate her. (I love that entry Michelle!) So, go check out Michelle and give her the same love that you've given me.
Now, this award comes with great responsibility and I'm not one to run when the going gets serious. This is the Arte y Pico award and it originated in Uruguay from a fabulous blogger who can test your Spanish comprehension skills if you pay her a visit. Here are the rules that accompany this esteemed award.

1. Choose 5 blogs that you consider deserving of this award for their creativity, design, interesting material, and also contribute to the blogging community.

2. Each award has to have the name of the author and a link to his/her blog.

3. Each award winner has to show the award and put the name of and link to the blog that presented her/him with the award.

4. The award winner and the one who has given the prize has to show the link of Arte Y Pico blog so everyone will know the origin of this award.

5. Show these rules.

Now, I'm a lot of things, but "rule breaker" isn't one of them. So here's my opportunity to pass on the torch to 5 blogs that I've come to love and adore over the last few months. And let me preface this by saying that I have 70 blogs on my reader, so I can't give this to everyone that I follow, but know that I love you all! And now, for the winners...

Kimba at A Soft Place to Land - I used to aspire to be Martha Stewart, but now I aspire to be Kimba. She has a gorgeous home, an amazing sense of style and she can work a glue gun like it's nobody's business. I'm in awe of her constant projects that she displays with sincere humbleness and can only hope that when I win the lottery this week, that she'll let me hire her as my personal interior decorator. Oh, and her blog rocks too!

Angela at A Pinch of This, A Dash of That... - Angela (aka my BFF) is the single person I have to thank for getting me into blogging. Prior to her entry "100 Things about me", I had only taken a very slight interest in blogs and that only amounted to reading a few here and there. Angela writes about everything from home improvement to fabulous cooking and she does it with style! She's got cooking demos that rival Pioneer Woman any day (and I'm not at all biased). She deserves this award for all that she's accomplished so far and all that she will accomplish in the future on her blog!

Rhea at Texas Word Tangle - Rhea has fast become one of my internet close friends! She was one of the first commenters EVER on my blog and I still don't know to this day how she found me. But I'm glad she did. Rhea's take on life with her soulmate, 2 adorable boys, and most adorable yellow Lab is amusing to read and beautifully illustrated. Rhea takes great pics and she's not afraid to use them either! And Rhea isn't afraid to be fun-loving 1 minute and ask some hard questions the next. I love her blog and respect her immensely!

Kat at Sunshine and Lemonade - Kat is another who has quickly become a close, online bud. She's been with me since almost day 1 and I love her sense of humor and musical tastes! Her blog is a wonderful conglomeration of gorgeous photography, amusing anecdotes and some killer songs. Bonus, she's a homeschooling mom who has a lot to offer on the subject. I might just be picking her brain very soon on THAT subject!

Heather at Mindless Junque - Heather is half of the brilliance behind SITS and her blog shows it. Not only is it beautiful to look at, but Heather has a sense of humor that makes me roll on the floor laughing! She writes about life with her 4 daughters (she's my hero!) and the ups and downs of being a mom, wife, and woman! I also love her take on the news of the world. Priceless commentary!
So there it is. A small list of some of the GREAT blogs out there that I love. And I'm always looking for new ones to fall in love with! Thanks again Michelle for the great award and we now return to our regularly scheduled blogging.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Another great post you should check out

I'm starting to become a regular reader of The R Family Diaries. Great blog you should check out sometime! Anyway, Mrs R linked back to a post on Hairline Fracture that is a great read for anyone with kids. I feel very lucky to have read it and let it remind me of what an important job being a parent is. Enjoy!

Thursday Thirteen

I am a self-professed t.v. addict. I have been this way since I was a wee one on my granddad's lap, sipping Dr. Pepper from a glass bottle and eating peanuts like they were the best candy in the world! Those were some good times. So, let's take a look now at what I will refer to as:

Angie's 13 Favorite T.V. Shows of the last 25 years
(in no particular order)

1. The Dukes of Hazzard - Oh, how I remember lusting after Bo Duke. His wavy blonde hair. His familiar southern drawl. His grin that just melted my 6 year old heart week after week. I even had a long pink nightgown with his face emblazoned on it and it said "I Love Bo Duke". And I did.

2. The Cosby Show - I always secretly wished that Cliff Huxtable would adopt me. Maybe it was the ultra cool brownstone that they lived in. Or the thought of having lots of siblings. Or maybe I was just hypnotized by the extensive loud sweater collection.

3. Beverly Hills 90210 - These were my peeps. The characters & I were the same age and we were going through the same things! Well, almost. So, I wasn't living in a major metropolitan area, or going to a public school, or driving a BMW, or dating an alcoholic. Wait. What did I have in common with these people again?

4. Grey's Anatomy - This show rocks because the writing is AMAZING. Shonda Rimes is my hero! Plus, any series that puts my the love of my life, Patrick Dempsey, on every week earns gold stars in my book. Did I mention that I love Patrick Dempsey? Just checking.

5. Chicago Hope - Ok, I know it would appear that I'm obsessed with medical dramas, but I'm really not. This show is from the brilliant mind of David E. Kelley and it starred another one of my favorite actors, Mandy Patinkin. That guy is a little strange, but a GREAT actor. They often had some wacko plot lines, but the writing again was phenomenal.

6. The Amazing Race - I love to travel and this show encompasses my love of "reality tv" and traveling, all wrapped up in this neat little package. My brother & I are planning on auditioning for an upcoming season. You can say you knew me know before I'm rich and famous and completely humiliated on worldwide television.

7. The Golden Girls - Stop laughing. This was Sex & The City before it was socially acceptable to talk about blow jobs and bed hopping on network television. And I still watch the reruns on Lifetime. Yes, I'm serious. Just ask my hubby.

8. Little House on the Prairie - Man, I longed to be half-pint. That girl had it made! She rocked that pinafore and ended up snagging that cutie Almanzo. All this while taking down her nemesis, Nellie. Laura, you're a supa-cool chick.

9. Gilmore Girls - This is another show that has OUTSTANDING writing. The show that made teen pregnancy somewhat glam by demonstrating a (mostly) functional relationship between a mom and daughter, who were very close in age. Loralei was the mom that I always wanted and Rory was the sister that I never had. Bonus, this show had several cute boys.

10. Friends - Yet another show that I felt I could identify with. These characters were somewhat close in age to me and it let me live vicariously because there's zero chance of me ever moving to NYC. Plus, Monica made me feel much better about my OCD. Hey, don't judge me.

11. Sex and The City - I have a little of each of these ladies in me, depending on the day, so watch out! The writing is great and I'm anxiously awaiting the arrival of this series on Netflix. Apparently, I've been missing a lot on the edited syndicated versions. Go figure.

12. The Flintstones - This is classic cartoon tv at it's finest. I loved this show and if I could find it on DVD, I would buy every episode for my girls to enjoy. A lot of the cartoons out today are crap and frankly, I'm afraid of my kids seeing them. I long for them to enjoy a simpler time, full of pedi-powered cars, dino-powered machines and Barney Rubble's laugh.

13. Frasier - Another ensemble comedy that worked because of brilliant writing and great acting. Frasier is one of those characters that you love despite all of his flaws. Roz was my other fave character on the show. Some of her zingers make me almost wet my pants. I said almost, ok.

And there you have it! There are many more shows that I have deep affection for, but these are the shows that I could watch in syndication (and do) day after day after day.

So, what are some of your favorites?

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Misty, Water Colored Memories

I try to keep things pretty light-hearted around here, but this entry is a bit different.

As I was driving home from my wonderful girls' weekend this past Sunday, I was listening to my iPod and a song came on that stopped me cold. I've not minced words about how much music is a serious part of my life. Many defining moments have been permanently etched into my memory because of a song that is associated with it. This was no different.

It was January of 2003. Hubby & I had just celebrated a very memorable Christmas where we surprised all of our family with the news of the impending arrival of our first child. Everyone was so happy. We had considered waiting until after the first dr's appointment before we told anyone, but what did we know? We were very new to this whole game and couldn't wait to spread the love.

I headed into my OB/GYN's office, alone, for my first pre-natal appointment. I had visions of boxes of pre-natal vitamins, brochures on what to expect and lots of congratulations from the staff for the new mommy. I could never have expected what I received.

The nurse came back with positive blood test results and said they wanted to do an ultrasound to get an idea of how far along I was. This didn't seem out of the ordinary to me. I laid back and let them press on with the uncomfortable exam. I carefully watched the technician's face as she poked and prodded. She didn't say anything, but her face spoke volumes. Something wasn't right. She left the room and I waited.

My doctor was busy with a delivery, so another doctor in the practice walked in. He was older and had the bedside manner of a porcupine. He poked and prodded and all of a sudden, I felt desperate...hopeless. What was going on? Why wasn't anyone talking to me?

The nurse told me that they needed a more experienced radiologist to do the ultrasound, so they sent me to the head of the radiology group in the hospital next door. By this time I was terrified and still alone. Taking it all in. Wondering what could possibly be going on with my body.

I spent an hour in that department and after 3 different doctors performed ultrasounds, I was sent back to my OB's practice to wait some more...without any answers. I sat in the uncomfortable chair in her office while I waited for some news, any news. She finally sauntered in and without so much as an "I'm sorry to tell you this", she said "You have an ectopic pregnancy and we must terminate it immediately." And then all I could hear was blah, blah, blah as she spouted out all this medical jargon about how this was a rare case and life threatening and did I understand.

Did I understand? Understand what? Understand that I now had to go back and tell all my family and friends that there would be no baby. Understand that I now had to sit at home for the next 10 weeks and hope that I didn't die as a result of wanting a child. Understand that I now had to call my hubby and tell him that there is no good news to report from this first dr's visit. I understood plenty.
After receiving the treatment necessary to start dealing with the ectopic, I got into my car, cried for what seemed like days and drove back to my office. On the short drive from the hospital to the office, the song "I'm With You" by Avril Lavigne played. It has such a somber melody that seemed to just capture this moment in my life perfectly. Here are some of the lyrics.

I'm looking for a place
I'm searching for a face
Is anybody here I know?
Cause nothing's going right
And everything's a mess
And no one like's to be alone
Isn't anyone trying to find me?
Won't somebody come take me home?

2003 was a rough year for us, but our beautiful first child finally joined our family in late 2004. I'll never forget the experience that surrounded our first journey into perceived parenthood. It was painful, but something that I learned from. I just feel lucky that a song exists out there that will always remind me of how lucky I feel to be a mom in the first place. Because for a time, I didn't think I would ever get to have that feeling.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


I knew when I got up this morning that I should never have left the house. This day kind of blew from the minute we left for swim lessons. But I digress.

What did I intend to do this evening?
  1. Feed and bathe the kids

  2. Get them in to bed early

  3. Get some much needed blogging (and other work) done

What did I end up doing this evening?

  1. Fed the kids pizza for the 2nd night in a row

  2. Commenced bath time and let them have 5 minutes of play in the water

  3. Performed an emergency evacuation from the bath when the 2 yr old decided to use it as her personal potty

  4. Calmed my 3 yr old who was hysterical at the sight of seeing poop in her lovely bath water

  5. Tried to understand how my 2 yr old was not hysterical. She was laughing.

  6. Finally got the kids dressed and in bed (an hour late)

  7. Spent the next hour bleaching the bathtub and the 10,000 toys that were in the bathtub at the time of the incident

  8. Walked around saying "EWWWWWWW" for 5 minutes while scrubbing my hands raw

  9. Grabbed a seat on the couch next to my computer with my bag of Double Stuffed Oreos and hoping that tomorrow is a better day

A Post for All Women to Read

Gals, I try pretty hard not to just flat out copy from others blogs that I stalk read, but this was just too good to pass up. My friend Tressa at American in Norway posted a link this morning that I feel the need to post also. And please go visit Tressa and give her some comment luv, because I guarantee, she's having a worse week than you are right now.

Carrie at Candid Carrie has written a post that I think is so amazing. Women of all life stages will appreciate it, so, run don't walk to Carrie's site right now. You can thank us later. Have a great Tuesday!

Growing Up is Hard for Mommy to Watch

There are several turning points in a young girl's life that must be noted with much fanfare. There's the first step, the first tooth, the first word...and the first night of sleep in her full size adult bed. She's too little to be sleeping in anything larger than a crib, in my opinion, but alas, we have converted her crib into it's final state. No more day bed. No more rails to make sure she doesn't roll the 6 inches out of her bed onto the floor. No more fighting with entirely too small crib mattress sheets.

Now we're in the realm of pillow top mattresses, 500 thread count sateen sheets, and way too many pillows. But she's in heaven and that makes me smile. Upon walking into her room, the smile grew from ear to ear. She immediately climbed up on her big girl bed and proceeded to make herself at home.

Gotta check out these awesome new sheets under this beautiful new quilt.

What? You mean you're so excited that you're ready to go to bed?
Good night my sweet and silly girl!
False alarm. She's so excited that she decided to give Ailey a big sisterly hug of excitement. Watch out Ashlyn, don't choke her!
Ashlyn was so excited about her new bed that night, that we were afraid she wouldn't sleep! Thankfully, we were wrong about that. She slept like an angel!

I'm just not sure about all this growing up that she's doing. What's next? Bras and boyfriends?! Oh my, I don't think my heart can take it.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Pay It Forward...Toddler Style

Much of the day has been spent decluttering my HORRENDOUSLY CLUTTERED living room. We're talking clutter so bad that I was entirely too embarrassed to even photograph it so my wonderful readers reader could be aghast with horror. It.was.that.bad.

Anyway, as I began on this huge endeavor, I enlisted the help of my oldest child. (She was trying very hard to get out of naptime today, so manual labor was her only out) When I explained to her that we were bagging up toys to give to children who didn't have toys, she seemed to really get it.

I beamed with pride as she brought me a ball and said, "Mommy, let's put this in the bag to give to children who don't have any balls to play with." Wow, what a great sense of giving I have instilled in my child!

Before I could break my arm patting myself on the back, she burst my bubble with this follow up comment. "That ball is Ailey's and she doesn't need it anymore." I see. Apparently, it's ok to donate her sister's toys, but she wasn't about to give up her own stuff. I guess I have instilled Robin Hood syndrome upon this child. Oh well, they say charity starts at home!

Deck Accessories

Since hubby finished our wonderful back deck for Mother's Day, we have been anxiously awaiting some accessories for it. We gave it serious consideration and then finally decided on 2 purchases that we could no longer be without. Hubby came home late one night and delivered the items to our deck. (We wanted to surprise the girls the following day with our new items.)

The next day, I couldn't contain myself to reveal the surprise. I opened up the french doors and the girls squealed with delight! Finally, a sand box that they can play in freely! And we searched 4 different stores for sand to fill this turtle and came up empty. We finally found Crayola colored sand at Kmart for $7 a bag. Too bad it took 6 bags to semi-fill the silly thing.

Here are the girls after the big reveal. They are stunned to see blue & pink sand.

I love pictures of kids feet. Those tootsies are just too cute for words.

The girls played for almost an hour in the sandbox and only managed to get about half a bag of sand on the deck. Oh well. We headed inside for lunch and a nap and miraculously, both girls slept for 2 hours. Yahoo!! As soon as they awoke, they both asked to put on their bathing suits and head out to our new pool. How could I say no? I dressed them and let them enjoy part 2 of the surprise.

This pool is one of those hard plastic kiddie pools and it has a slide molded into it. The girls went crazy! Ashlyn took on the slide first, so she could show Ailey how it was done.

Ailey is a very quick study. She had mastered that slide in no time!
The look on Ashlyn's face pretty much dictated the whole tone of that day. Lots of excitement and very happy girls!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Serene Sunday

What is the recipe for a perfect, serene, Sunday afternoon?

A couple of Planter's Punch drinks.

And a best friend with a brand new pool.

This has been a fabulous weekend visiting with my BFF, Angela. She is an AWESOME cook and a wonderful hostess. To see all the yummy food that we've eaten this weekend, go check out her blog. You won't be sorry! Happy Sunday y'all!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

For Your Amusement

Recently, a family friend invited us to spend a day with her at our local amusement park. This place has been around since 1925 and has changed somewhat over the years, but it was so cool to see that some things that I remember from 20 years ago are still the same. I was thrilled to introduce my kids to this local icon!

We arrived just as the gates were opening for another sun-kissed southern summer day. Thankfully, the temperatures weren't too warm and the breeze was refreshing coming off the lake that the park surrounds.

The girls took one look around at all the cool rides and were totally overwhelmed. However, Ashlyn took charge of the situation and pointed us in the direction of the first ride that she was really interested in. After riding that, we headed for the little train that goes around the perimeter of the park. Ashlyn hammed it up for the camera while we waited to depart.

This park has a whole section of kiddie rides that were PERFECT for the girls to enjoy all by themselves. The ladybugs were a big hit and each of them rode it several times. Ailey pointed out that this was her favorite ride of the day.

Our friend "Tia" who took us on this adventure was especially excited to take the girls on the flying elephants ride. Here's Tia & Ashlyn getting ready to take off into the sky!

Ailey, being the little Miss Independent that she is, wanted to fly her own aircraft. I see a future as a pilot, maybe?
After a nice lunch, I showed the girls the enormous flock of geese that were begging to be fed. After they gave the fowl all of our leftover french fries, Ashlyn decided to donate her leftover goldfish crackers to the poor birds. She was kind enough to let Ailey have a few crackers to feed them also.
After about 5 hours of fun, mommy was worn out and ready to head home. Both girls were fast asleep by the time we made it home, 30 minutes later, so I would call this day trip a huge success!

A Fabulous Summer Contest!

Hi readers reader! I'm so glad you came by for a visit today! This awesome site that I'm a member of called The Secret is in the Sauce, is hosting another fabulous contest that you should click over and check out now. Click here...I'll wait...

For any of you who are new to SITS and do not have their button on your site yet, if you wouldn't mind mentioning my humble little blog when you comment, I sure would appreciate it! With sugar on top!

Now, I'm off to go lay by the pool and come up with some wonderful blog ideas. I promise, I won't scare you with any pics of me by the pool. No one wants to see that...really. Enjoy your Saturday and I will be checking in later this evening with some new entries!

Friday, June 20, 2008

High School Heartache - Part 12

Eric was a pretty athletic guy and he took an interest in cycling while we dated. He used to ride his mountain bike from his school, and sometimes his house, all the way to my school, just to see me. It was very endearing. I mean, these little cycling trips would easily be 25 miles round trip and he did it several times.

The week after prom, I was at school having a perfectly delightful day, when suddenly my world came crashing down. My friend "K" pulled me aside around lunchtime and said that she needed to tell me something. She sat me down and explained that she heard something disturbing and after researching it, she determined that it was probably true. Eric had cheated. And he had cheated BIG TIME. And it was with his best friend, my classmate. I was devastated.

To make matters worse, Eric had decided to surprise me at school that very day via one of his cycling adventures. He showed up and all I could do was cry and tell him to leave. He didn't understand. He had the most hurt look on his face, but I didn't care, because he had just broken my heart and left with a piece of it...forever.

Later that night, Eric called me at home. He begged to know what was wrong and I told him that I knew about him and his friend. Silence. "Eric, I know about the two of you. Did you hear me?" Silence. "I don't know what you're talking about." Yeah right. "I know that you cheated on me, just admit it." More silence. "I didn't cheat on you and whoever told you that I did is a liar."

I told Eric that I didn't want to see him anymore. I could tolerate a lot of things, but cheating wasn't one of them. He tried calling several times and continued to deny my accusation, but I just wasn't hearing it.

Since our paths had no reason to cross, I didn't see or hear from Eric for a long time. We ran into each other at the local mall over a year later and it got me thinking about him again. We started talking later that year and started seeing each other again "unofficially". That lasted for a few months until I met my hubby and then I left Eric in the dust.

Fast forward 9 years and I'm in an accessories aisle in a home improvement store. I'm searching for outlet covers for my newly painted living room and a salesman approaches me to ask if I need help. I glance upwards and can't believe my eyes. It's him. It's Eric. We chit-chat for a couple of minutes and trade stories of how happy we are. He's married with twins on the way. Good for him. We walk away from each other for what I'm pretty sure will be the last time.

Fast forward another 3 years. We meet again and trade phone numbers this time. Hubby is well aware that Eric & I are talking now, but I assure him that it's nothing more than 2 old friends catching up. And it's been exactly that. We talk periodically and try to keep up with each other. He actually brought his kids to my oldest child's birthday party last year and it was fine.

With all the time that has passed and everything that's happened, I now know that he & I will never be anything more than friends. Although, I still wonder to this day if he was lying or telling the truth about cheating on me back in high school. Maybe one of these days, I'll get up the courage to ask him and get the final answer to that one last question.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Wax On, Wax Off

Why is it that we go to great lengths to inflict pain on ourselves for the silliest reasons? Yesterday was one of those days where I asked myself that very question.

Back in the good old days, when I was the high powered business woman with way more free time and disposable income, I had an aesthetician on speed dial. She was awesome! The woman had the ability to make you feel at ease in the most uncomfortable of situations and she could work some magic with hot wax.

And speaking of hot wax, who in their bloody right mind thought to themselves, "Hey, this is a million dollar idea. Let's pour hot wax on the parts of our bodies that we're not thrilled with and then rip the wax (and whatever else comes along for the ride) off with strips of fabric. Brilliant!"

So, yesterday, I went to visit that old friend. She remembered me, despite the fact that it's been almost 4 years since we've seen each other. I was immediately transported to that "safe zone" again by her incessant fast talking and witty banter. And then, I let her talk me into something I thought I would never do. After it was over, I think she felt so sorry for me, that she gave me a free eyebrow wax. Thank god at least something good did come out of that experience.

Now I know what Johnny Cash was lamenting about. I really could have gone without that little nugget of knowledge.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

High School Heartache - Part 11

It was March of 1992 and Eric & I had been dating for several months now. With each passing day, I began to wonder more and more if he could seriously be "the one". Part of me knew it was silly to wonder such a serious thing at such a young age, but things were too good to be true. Now yes, we had our ups and downs, but what couple doesn't.

Eric's birthday had arrived and having him fit in with my friends was really important to me. So, I hatched a plan to kill 2 birds with 1 stone. I planned a birthday party at his house and invited several of my friends to attend. Aside from the logistics of trying to get my friends to Eric's house, I think things went pretty well. We all had a pretty good time and I felt much better about my best girlfriends knowing how serious I was about this guy.

As my friends all took off for the night, Eric's mom & sister retreated upstairs, leaving us alone downstairs. All of a sudden, this song that I absolutely LOVE began playing and we slow danced. Time stood still. The song was "Everything I Do" by Bryan Adams. It's from the Robin Hood movie with Kevin Costner. The song in itself is incredibly romantic, but for some reason, it left an indelible mark on my psyche. I can literally to this day, close my eyes while hearing that song and feel like I'm right back in that moment. I knew that in that moment, it felt like we were the only 2 people on the earth and that we would be together forever.

A couple of weeks passed and prom season was now upon us. This was my junior prom and I was beside myself with excitement. I found this really cute short black velvet dress with these poofy red satin things as the sleeves. (Hey, it was style back then. Don't judge me.) I loved the dress, but what I didn't love was my hair that evening. I had an aunt who was a "hairdresser" (translate: she catered to blue-hairs who didn't mind the beehive look of their youth) and I trusted her to create something memorable. I got memorable alright. Just not in the good way. So, hair disaster notwithstanding, Eric picked me up and the evening of magic began. He was so handsome in his tux. I adorned him with his boutonniere and he placed the corsage on my wrist. The corsage had white baby rose buds on it. We hopped into the car and drove off. I still remember what I had for dinner that evening. Chicken Teriyaki. After a lovely dinner, we went to prom and danced the night away. I was supposed to go to a friend's house for a supervised "after-prom" party, but we all know that didn't happen. Instead, Eric & I went to another friend's house, with 2 other couples, and had our own party. It was great.

It was also the last happy memory I have of our relationship. Little did I know that things were about to turn really ugly and very soon.

Monday, June 16, 2008

High School Heartache - Part 10

Our relationship continued to escalate and with each passing day, I really began to realize just how much I cared about this guy. Was it possible that those 3 little words that can make or break couples would ever pass my lips? Circumstances were certainly heading in that direction. It wasn't too long before we were throwing around "I love you" as often as "How are you?" Things were starting to get really serious.

Something that really touched me deeply was his interest in my family. He was a sweetheart to my little brother and he loved coming to my grandparents house and spending time with us all. He especially took an interest in my mom. Actually communicating with my mom. See, my mom is completely deaf and has been since birth. She lip reads really well, but sign language is her first language. Eric was very interested in learning sign language so that he could communicate with my mom. How sweet is that?! We ended up taking classes together, so I could brush up on my skills and he could learn from scratch. It was a real bonding experience and, of course, it made my mom fall in love with him.

Valentine's Day of 1992 came and I was so excited. I was actually going to have a boyfriend on this horrible holiday! He showed up at my grandparents house that afternoon and my heart skipped a beat. He gave me a rose and then handed me a small box. Oh my, I think I'm going to pass out. I opened it to reveal this beautiful ring. It had a simple gold band and a beautiful blue stone. (Blue was my favorite color back then) It wasn't fancy or expensive, but it was priceless to me. Now, it wasn't a promise ring or anything like that, it was just something that he saw and thought I would love...and he was right. I wore it ALL the time.

We began spending a lot of time at the movie theater. That was my first "real" job in high school and I'll tell you now, my kids will NOT be allowed to work in a movie theater until they're 18. I say this because the ability to see movies for free is not a good thing for a very impressionable teen. A movie that we saw TOO MANY times in the theater was Basic Instinct. If you've never seen this movie, well, it certainly leaves a lasting impression. Suffice it to say, there's a reason it was rated "R". Check it out on IMDB if you need more details. Anyway, this is where another song comes into my repertoire. There's a particularly memorable club scene in the movie where rave music is playing in the background. The song is called "Rave the Rhythm" and it's by a British band called Channel X. I love that song and so did Eric.

As you can see, music really began to play an integral part in our relationship. Eric's birthday was about to happen and that event would produce a moment with a song that haunts me to this day.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

High School Heartache - Part 9

So, after finding out that our cats had the same name, I was totally convinced that I had found my soul mate. Call it young, naive, puppy love, but it was so much more than that. We had a deep seeded connection that didn't need words. We could sit in silence, enjoying the comfort of each other's fingers intertwined for hours just as much as we enjoyed going to big gatherings of people and forgetting that we weren't the only 2 people there. It was magic. However, with all magical things, there is always a dark force working in the background to wreak havoc. Our relationship was no different.

We came from 2 very different backgrounds. He came from a broken home and had a wonderful mom who was struggling to make ends meet. Bless her, she worked her fingers to the bone and I think strived to be more of a friend to her kids than an authority figure. I, on the other hand, had 2 parents that fought constantly and a Dad who was entirely too over-protective. It made dating a real challenge. That is, until I got my drivers license. Once I was mobile, the game was on. It was time to start REALLY dating.

Eric had a good friend that had been there for him since childhood. She, yes SHE, was a classmate of mine. I didn't really know her and honestly, she was someone that we kind of made fun of. She was the quiet, brooding, artistic type that kept to herself and therefore, bred all kinds of speculation about what she was really like. Rumors flew about that she was a lesbian, which honestly, put me at ease. I mean, at 16 years old, who really wants their boyfriend's best friend to be a girl?

One night, pretty early on in our courtship, Eric suggested that we hang out at his best friend's house. I wasn't opposed to it and besides, I would much rather be there WITH him. We talked for a bit and then I don't know what came over us. All I'll say is that his friend got a bit more than she bargained for when Eric & I proceeded to make out for quite sometime, while she was in the room. (And it was just making out. This series is rated PG-13 for heaven sakes!) I know, shame on us, but it was crazy. Speaking of which, this was the first time in our relationship where a song made a permanent impression on my psyche. I will never forget that while we were kissing, Seal's "Crazy" played in the background. That was just indicative of the whole situation. We were crazy to be acting like this, crazy to be at her house, crazy to think that this wasn't going to come back to haunt me sometime in the future.

Friday, June 13, 2008

High School Heartache - Part 8

Ok Kat, here it is. The installment that you've been begging for. For anyone else who has just stumbled upon this, we're taking a little trip down memory lane and visiting some of the more notable relationships from my youth. If you would like to catch up, check the right hand side under "My Favorite Posts" and you'll see the first 7 chapters. And now, back to our story...
It was the summer of 1991. I was working at a church camp and relishing being away from home for 10 weeks. Talk about sweet freedom. I had spent most of the summer pining for a certain fellow staff worker and drowning my sorrows with the melodies emanating from my Walkman. As I dozed by the lake on most afternoons, I thanked my lucky stars to have this opportunity to bask in nature, without a care in the world. It was heaven.
As the summer came to a close, I made arrangements to meet a friend upon my return to civilization. School was about to start back and she had eyes for a guy that she had met earlier that summer. She wanted me to meet him and I obliged. (Anything to get out of the house for an evening) Little did I know that this evening out was going to be the start of a whole new direction of my life.
As I approached my friend "G", there he was. Tall, dark & handsome. He wouldn't make eye contact with me at first. When he did, I was blown away by these piercing eyes. He flashed a quick smile and then sat and listened to G & I catch up on a summer's worth of gossip. I couldn't stop looking at him. He was so quiet, so painfully shy. And so hard to read. Was he bored to tears? Did he think I was pretty? Was I ever going to hear his voice?
He sat patiently for what I'm sure was at least an hour while G & I "girl-talked". He did finally interject a couple of witty comments here & there, but for the most part, he just observed. I didn't really find out that much about him during our meeting. He told me that he went to a school close by and lived a pretty good distance away from me, but there was something about him that was intoxicating. I left for home that evening wondering "What just happened?" I was about to get the answer I was hoping for.
G called me the next day and asked the million dollar question. "So, what did you think? Are you interested?" Duh. Apparently my starry eyed gazes and puddle of drool weren't indication enough. "Yeah", I replied. Now, I know what you're thinking. I said that G was the one that had eyes for Eric to start with. I think that it was partly true, but in the end, she realized that they would never be more than friends. And so, she then stepped into the matchmaker role. She gave him my number and then the roller coaster ride began. We talked on the phone incessantly. Long conversations about our very different backgrounds and our many common interests. There was 1 story in particular that still gives me the shivers to this day.
When I was about 8 years old, I had an obsession with cats. My very first cat was a black & white mixed breed that I loved dearly. She met an untimely demise while I was away at Girl Scout camp one summer, but I never forgot her. When Eric & I met, he had just lost his beloved cat that he had loved since he was a little kid. When I told him what my cat's name was, he froze. And what he said next, sent me reeling. His cat had a Cherokee name because his mother's side of the family was Cherokee Indian. The translation of his cat's name, was my cat's name. This had to be fate.
{to be continued}

Diva Ballerinas

Today was one of those days that made me really happy to be mom of 2 girls.

Yesterday, I was driving all around town, screaming expletives at idiot drivers because I had (as usual) waited until the last minute to find leotards, tights and ballet shoes for both my girls. You see, this morning, they began their very first ballet class. I signed them up a couple of months ago and have been marking the days off my calendar, in anticipation of this moment.

I'm not a girly-girl by any stretch of the imagination. I own 1 dress and that's exactly how many times it's been worn...once. I live in shorts and t-shirts in the summer and jeans and long sleeve shirts in the winter. I haven't used a hair dryer in YEARS and can count on 1 hand the number of times in the last 15 years that I've worn makeup. Like I said, I'm pretty low-maintenance.

But, when it came to the thought of my 2 little princesses in ballet slippers and tutus, well, I almost tear up at the idea. And so, I dressed them in their little outfits and took them to the studio and proceeded to watch the magic happen.

We're ready for our close-up, Mr. DeMille. Serious dancers don't smile you know.

This class is called Fairytale Princess Ballet. Each week, the class members get to wear a different princess costume. At the end, they pick their favorite costume and Cinderella comes to visit them for their finale. I can hardly wait!

Here's my youngest, cracking a smile. We wouldn't want anyone to think that she's actually enjoying herself or anything.

Oh, back to the serious stare. Working this wand is a serious job.

Here's my oldest, the queen of the divas. She's 3 and a half and is already copping attitude like a 14 year old. Oh boy, there's going to be some rough years ahead, I can already tell! She was digging the costume though. She was the only student who wore it the whole time. I was afraid she was going to insist on bringing it home with us.

A diva simply must have her rest.

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