Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Seriously the SMOKIN'-EST Hiker EVAH (SFMTY)

When I was young we were definitely outdoors people. Summer vacations were spent fishing, camping, swimming in lakes and hiking. Growing up in the Northwest does that to you, it's a prerequisite in order to be allowed to call yourself a North-Westerner.

I still enjoy those things but in smaller more manageable doses. I would love to say that I hike/camp/fish/survive with flint and a lean-to made of brush and a tree with only my keen survival skills to keep my alive, but Bear Grylls I am not. No dear readers I had really only one brush of true survival the summer before I started High school. This was the summer that my youth group would go on a 5 day long trek on a trail circling Mt. Hood.

The Pacific Crest Loop (part of the Pacific Crest Trail)is a 40 mile (yes FORTY) mile trail of winding, mountainous, rocky rugged trails that should not be attempted by a skinny pre-pubescent girl carrying a pack that nearly outweighs her. This trail though beautiful had stops along the way that left much to be desired for camping. These included those nicknamed "Mosquito-ville" (the place where all mosquitoes in the NW come from) and "Rocky-Road" where even with your whole 1/4" thick pad could not protect you from the rocks digging into your back as you tried to sleep.

The trip was not without fun. We did what we liked to call "Glacier Sliding" which was a game in which we folded our sleeping pads in half, held on and slid down glaciers that ran through our trail. The downside was the volcanic rock that also was in the ice. Stopping with anything but the bottoms of your feet resulted in horrid scrapes to any exposed skin. We also learned how to pluck and kill Quail (throwing a stick at the right angle at a quail will decapitate it, resulting in death, resulting in eating the evidence so we are not fined for hunting in a restricted area).

Food was also fun! Nothing better then Spaghetti logs with tomato paste and watered down Gatorade made with water pumped from a creek that a deer probably peed in somewhere up-stream from you. We immediately headed to the nearest burger place and wolfed down a double cheeseburger, fry and coke after being on the trail for nearly a week. This of course resulted in barfing our guts out since our stomachs had shrunk.

All in all the hike was at the very least beautiful, breathtaking and a learning experience. Plus I got to hang with my dad and bro. That for a 13 year old girl is huge.

No need to adjust your computer monitors Ladies and Gentlemen. I really was that geeky, awkward, flat chested and pale. I know it is hared to believe, but it is true.

For more blasts from the past visit We are THAT Family:

It's Official!!

Our offer was ACCEPTED!!

Yes Nutty Readers we will soon be homeowners in our new city! We will have the inspection later this week and hopefully close by the end of next month. Muirne has already decided on a two-tone pink bedroom with a canopy over the head of her bed, and Bardolf wants blue stripes and cars. For the toy/bonus room I am leaning towards a light green. The rest of the rooms will most likely stay as they are, with the exception of one wall in the dining area and the master suite. Also we plan on painting the brass on the fireplace. I PROMISE to post pictures of the finished rooms, but until then, here are a few from the listing (sorry they are so small...I am not sure why!):
BackYard (the lot is 1/2 acre!)

Living Room

Dining Room and Kitchen

Front Entry

Thank you all again SO MUCH for the good thoughts and comments!


Sunday, October 9, 2011

CRAP! So there was this like big important thing!

Where have you BEEEN? What have you been DOOOING?

I know you have asked those questions, at least in my mind you all care and love me and miss my stretch-marked-soon-to-be-six-pack. I actually kinda forgot all about the big IMPORTANT meeting Caspian's company has every year and guess what? It was this past week. So I am back, kinda. My reader is busting at the seams with new posts to catch up on, so I will be spending the next couple days catching up on my reading, which means not too much posting. That and Caspian is off of work until Monday. Oh and the temps are in the 100's so we will be spending our time at the pool. So dearest readers, I will have squirrelly stories and nutty pictures to share starting back on Monday. Until then I will be stalking my reader and soaking up sun and chlorine.

Things Bardolf Knows For Sure

With Muirne starting kindergarten, Bardolf and I have been having more conversations during our alone time in the morning. Most of these revolve around questions and answers. The other day, however, Bardolf was in the statement making mood and was telling me things he knew for sure. For instance:

"Dat right dare is my Blanket. I like my Blanket."

"Wizzie don't wike dose quirrels. She bark at dem."

"Dat is your coffee momma, you wike dat."

"Dat sissy skool bus. She come home now."

"I do draw dat picture. I wike dat color on dare."

You catch my drift. Things that an almost three year old says because they think out loud, and want reassurance that their truths are right. Shortly after rattling off this list of things he holds as truths, he sits quietly contemplative. Suddenly he smirks, reaches his hand down his pants, and proudly proclaims:

"My Penie! It getting Bigger!!"

Bardolf. What can I say....

PS: Because I have been trying to keep limits on what I share and don't share I have considered not sharing this story about Bardolf, but SERIOUSLY! I totally had to tell you all because it cracked me UP!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Then I broke

What a week.

I broke yesterday. I made a quick stop at the grocery store and had Lizzard with me. I left her in the car with Bardolf and I ran in. In that time she managed to poop all over the inside of the car. I had to spend nearly four hours cleaning, shampooing and disinfecting every surface of the interior. It was awful.

That was my breaking point. I just sobbed. I cried for my cousin. I cried for my families loss. I cried because I was frustrated, tired and angry. I cried because I failed my children this week. I cried because of the unknown of Caspian's job. I just cried. Hard.

When I finished crying I felt cold, and drained. The rest of the day I just went through the motions. It was a busy day with swimming lessons for both kids plus conferences for Muirne. We got home late, then it was time to eat and get the kids ready for bed.

Caspian and I sat quietly, watching TV and talking about this and that on commercials. I let Lizzard out one more time, then we went to bed. Then, I slept. The first night in weeks that I have slept all night without dreams waking me.

Today we are taking our time. Muirne doesn't have school and we really don't have anywhere to be, other then visiting my grandma, and a quick trip to the store for some bread. This weekend I am taking my time to reset my family and focus on life in the moment. To remember those I love and know that those that have passed are not gone, but with us every day. To strengthen the bonds of family and never to forget to say I love you. That is what I plan to do this weekend, there is nothing I would rather do.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Lost In Translation

The Juveniles and I spent Friday afternoon at one of our local parks. This park had all of the regular play equipment plus a bonus item that we had not discovered on prior trips there. There were two speakers connected by an underground pipe that one could talk through and be heard by another at the other end of the playground. This was quite similar to the old two cans and string--which after Friday's fun I may have to make a set for them.

We spent much of our time talking to each other, trying to figure out what was being said and then responding accordingly. Most of the conversations were simple, asking what the other was doing, and giggling at the responses. However jumbled the messages sounded they didn't tire of each other's voices and continued to live in the now of the fun at that moment. The simple joys of the game overtook any possible frustration at not being able to understand what was being said. The fact that most of the time they had no idea what the other was saying was a non-issue compared to the jovial tone of the play.

Stunned by their complete disregard for anything but the present was like a slap in the face. I have shared with others, that this past week the Universal nudges are leaving me bruised by their persistence, yet I still find myself looking for the exact meaning, paths, answers, that in reality will show themselves to me if I just learn to let go of the literal translation. Instead of wondering if I am getting the message the way it is meant to be heard I need to just enjoy the message however it comes to me at that moment.

As the hour grew late and little tummy's began to rumble it was time to leave our games for another day. Muirne pleaded to whisper one last message to Bardolf at the other end of the speaker. Her message was simple.

"I love you, Brother!"

Those words translated loud and clear.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Seven Years Ago

Seven years ago today, we checked into Edgefield for the night.
Seven years ago today, we lit candles and tied ribbons on champagne flutes.
Seven years ago today, we gathered in front of three friends in the room.
Seven years ago today, we made promises to each other in front of a judge.
Seven years ago today, we kissed to seal the vows.
Seven years ago today, we were pronounces husband and wife.
Seven years ago today, we became us.

I love you. Happy Anniversary.

For those of you who don't know, we actually have two anniversaries. The first is November 17, 2001 when we quietly eloped with just three friends as witnesses. A little over six months later, May 25th 2002, we had a traditional formal wedding. To make a long story short we did so to make things easier in relation to Caspian's job. To this day, most of our famly does not know. My parents and brother know, but noone else in my family. My husbands family does not kow at all. Maybe someday we will tell everyone...or not ;-)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Breastmilk Sniper: the Next Phase in Stealth Weaponry

My cousin and his wife are coming into town for Thanksgiving. They come every other year for a week to spend time with the family, and this year is their year to visit, I am really excited. I lovingly call them "Ken and Barbie", because they are that beautiful. They have two preteen boys and live in a million dollar home outside of the Bay Area in California. He is an electrician and she is a housewife and bookkeeper for his business. They definitely fit the mold for the perfect example of Californian suburban family. This in exchange makes them more fun then you can stand.

Last time my cousin came in town, was last year for my dad's wedding. His wife, "Barbie" had to stay behind to play soccer/football mom for the boys. To make a long story short, my cousin "Ken" charmed a group of ladies in the bar as well as a group of gruff looking guys and the bartender, which in turn meant free drinks for us. I felt like total shit the next day for my dad's wedding, but the good time was worth it.

The trip two years ago, included both Ken, Barbie and the boys. We decided to have a cousin's night out Thanksgiving Eve. This group consisted of Ken and Barbie, Caspian and I, and my Brother "Juppie". On Juppie's suggestion we headed to a nice bar downtown that had a great atmosphere, good food and fantastic cocktails. I was still breastfeeding Bardolf at the time, but had pumped enough ahead of time that if needed, I could pump and dump the alcohol out.

We got to the bar and luckily it was not too busy yet. Juppie claimed a pool table while Caspian and Ken went to the bar. The pool table next to us was occupied by some attractive and curious bachelors. Of course they instantly headed in Barbie's direction, seemingly unaware that she was Ken's wife. She flirted while Ken stood by and laughed. This was a common theme for them I figured--and once again free drinks flowed.

After a few hours and too many drinks we headed out to a dance club. Caspian was driving (at the time we had a crew cab GMC) and therefore the only sober one in the bunch. Juppie was riding shotgun, I was in the driver side rear seat, Barbie in the rear center, and Ken in the passenger side rear seat. I complained that my boobs hurt because I hadn't nursed in a while, and I could probably shoot something with the milk, which sparked Ken to say:

"I'll give you $100 if you can hit someone walking down the sidewalk."

I started laughing, then I realized he was serious.

"Really? You'll give me a Benjamin?" I asked.

"Totally, but you have to be stealth and we have to see it," he said.

"I'm in," I said as I started to roll down the window.

Caspian figuring out what I was doing, started rolling up the window and hit the window lock on his door panel.

"NO!! I can totally do it! Unlock the window!!" I yelled as I took aim and then fired.

"Oh my GOD!!" Barbie screamed, laughing.

Then we all saw it, the big streak of milk across the window. Caspian had thwarted my attempt and wouldn't roll the window back down. The entire group erupted in laughter and Ken took a picture of the streak with his camera phone. I put the weapons away and mumbled that I totally could have pulled it off.

The next day was Thanksgiving and we went to dinner at my Aunt's house (Ken's Mom). When we got there they yelled for us to come around to the back slider instead of using the front door. When we got to the door there was a sign posted:

"Got Milk?"

Monday, October 3, 2011

Public Broadcasting, WALL-E, Thunder and Lightning, Mudbugs, SO RANDOM! (Monday Madness)

This weekend started off with a bang tourturing Bardolf and ended with a bang! Because it is Monday and I can't ever seem to have cohesive thoughts after the weekend, especially when Caspian has the whole weekend off (not just Sunday) so I have some Bullets of Random-ness for you.
  • Bardolf really truly is traumatized and if we even mention the words "hair" and "cut" in the same sentence he starts to cry. Awesome.
  • Alandra and her hubby had us over for dinner. And Mud-Bugs. Mud-bugs that were trying to escape the bag in the fridge. They thought they had 6 but we could only find 4. That will be a fun surprise later on.

  • Caspian's Nova was not braking properly, so he worked on it for about 5 hours Sunday. My 'burb's brakes have been squeaking for about a month and he still hasn't fixed it. Priorities??

  • Murine was watching TV while Bardolf napped and I cleaned up lunch. I suddenly heard singing. Like opera/musical singing. I asked her what she was watching. She said "PBS Kids" So I look at the screen and it is some sort of military musical. Weird. I tell her that yes it is PBS but not PBS Kids. She insisted it was and continued to watch it for half an hour until her My Little Ponies missed her. M'kay....
  • Lizzard once again proved she is Mental and needs her Prozac. I foolishly trusted her to jump into the 'Burb when I opened the door. Nope she ran right past us then wedge herself through a fence into a neighbor's backyard down the street where she proceeded to take a large poo... MEN-TAL.
  • I have decided that I want to live in Lizzard's brain for the day on a Sunday. Must be interesting.
  • I also have decided I want to live in Bardolf's brain everyday. I think it must be fun.
  • Bardolf is still too young to go to a movie in a theatre. Not even WALL-E could keep him entertained for more then 30 minutes, though the rest of the Sqirrelly-Gang thought it was pretty darned cute (and had a pretty neat message)!
  • Spaghetti is my fall-back plan. Everyone will eat it and it is easy. I need to make it more often.
  • Thunder and Lightning storms cut out our original swimming plans for Sunday, but on the flip side watching them with the kids was fantastic! I forgot how much I enjoy them, especially when you can listen to them without a five year old jabbering your ear off....

(I got lucky and snapped this picture of the lightning above the trees across the street)

That's all Folks! Enjoy your Monday!


For more Monday Madness visit Barking Mad