Monday, November 30, 2009


I have a turkey hangover. There is so much that happened over the weekend and I'm flat out exhausted. I will catch up with you all tomorrow. This week I'll talk about Black Friday shopping with my Mom, getting a job and the first step in ushering in Christmas. I hope you had a wonderful and safe holiday.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Kaitlyn's 2nd Birthday

Today is Kaitlyn’s Birthday. She is two. Oh the terrible two’s. I think Kaitlyn entered this mischievous stage months ago. Kaitlyn is very smart, very loving and very sensitive. I have never seen such a young child get her feelings hurt so easily. I think it is because she wears her heart on her sleeve. If I am sitting down for over five minutes I am guaranteed a visit and lap sitting from K-Bear. She’d rather be snuggling than sitting alone and when she gives you a kiss you sense meaning behind it.

Teagan was only four months old when I found out I was pregnant with a second child. I really wanted a boy. A girl and a boy, I’d be done. Even when I was told it was a girl I still hoped they were wrong. I guess all the hoping is why Kaitlyn looks just like her Father. From her smile, to her pout, to her leave me alone glare she is her Father. Now that I have her I would never ever trade her for a boy. Kaitlyn is perfect and the girls are perfect for each other.

I was also very worried that I would not love Kaitlyn as much as Teagan. I hear this is a common thought for Mother’s expecting their second child. Teagan was such a blessing that the very thought of her would swell my heart to bursting and I had so many doubts that this feeling would not exist with Kaitlyn. I was wrong. When Kaitlyn was born they gave her to me to lay skin upon skin to warm her. In that instant she looked up at me as I cooed to her and my heart surged. It was the same breath taking love I had for Teagan with no failing. My Kaitlyn had her own place in my heart and it was just as vast.

We were blessed when we had one beautiful, smart wonderful child. We are humbled to have received two. Kaitlyn you are my heart with legs. You are my joy and I am thankful to be your Mom. I love you and hope you have a very Happy Birthday.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Birthday Cakes

Birthday cakes. The center of the Birthday party. This year I wanted two cakes, one for each bear to have a candle on and blow out. I thought of Max and Ruby or a Dora and Diego but I kept being brought back to Sponge Bob and Patrick. It’s a square and a star so how much trouble should it be? If you allot for the time it shouldn’t be any bother at all. Time, my fatal foe.

I bake two 9” rounds the morning of the party. Taking each round I cut out the figures. Piecing together arms and legs. Teagan and Kaitlyn come in to the dining room and see the uncovered chocolate figures and yell out “Sponge Bob…Patrick.” If nothing else the figures are recognizable so I suppose I’m off to a great start.

I mixed up a big batch of frosting. I am not use to frosting cakes and I was afraid of running out of frosting. There was so much leftover I could have made a thick frosting on another set of cakes but it was worth it to easy my mind. I took several bowls and doled out servings for all the colors; yellow, green, pink, purple, brown, and red. I cheated and bought black. The colors were okay but brown is not an easy color to achieve without it getting brackish.

I decide to frost Patrick first. His body was easy, as were the shorts. I pipe on the flowers on the shorts and they end up looking like blobs. I put on his eyes and pipe in the retinas, mouth and of course belly button. Patrick is done. He actually looks cute. I’m not going to win an award but he’s definitely Patrick and I’m happy.

On to Sponge Bob. He’s square so he should be even easier. I coat his body and move on to his sleeves and pants. I was not pleased with the color of the brown but the pants went on well. At this point I look at the clock. I have thirty minutes before people should start arriving and I have not taken a shower, done my hair, make-up or gotten dressed. Time, damn, damn, damn, time. Because of the new stress I decide to forget the shirt and I pipe on his tie. Well that just looks stupid without the shirt. So I lay out a line for the shirt. Better but you can tell it was an after thought. I put on his eyes and pipe out the tongue. I take the black and pipe the retinas, eye lashes (the are important), and mouth. I realize the little tube of black is not enough so his shoes will have to be the horrible brown. At this point compromise comes easily. Something is missing. Not just right. I forgot his two huge teeth. Without them it’s just not Sponge Bob. So I carefully try to squeeze in teeth. They are little nubbins but they will work.

I have no more time. They will have to do. No they are not as good as I could have done if I had mapped the time accurately. However, I am over all satisfied with them.

Every one recognized them and actually gave me kudos. My SIL was the only one who was brutally honest and chalked them up to a tolerable rendition. I think that’s why I love her so much. She did like the frosting and so that is notable.

The girls loved them and even their cousin was pleased. Once I gave her Sponge Bob’s eyeball. A good time was had by all and I will of course take a crack at it next year.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Take Time

This weekend’s Birthday party was extremely fun and had very few snags. The girls got a butt load of presents and even the cakes were well received. I’ll blog about that in the days to come. Today I want to recognize the best thing about the party. The people.

A year ago we lived in Georgia. So far away from family and friends that we utilized web conferencing to stay in touch and make sure the bears had a connection established. This was hard for all of us. While I loved Georgia I hated being absent. I would cringe when I would be told of a family outing or a girl’s night out that I missed. Life goes on without you no matter how much you desire to be included.

So we are back. Back among family and friends and it feels so good. I knew I missed people but didn’t realize how innate it was. Or how much better I feel when I’m able to sit face to face with a friend and laugh. My spirit is rejuvenated.

There were some family and friends that couldn’t make it on Saturday and they were missed. Nevertheless from the ones that were there I relished them so much. I flitted from group to group and basked in their presence. I am sure I was giddier than the bears with all of their toys.

If you haven’t seen a friend or a cousin in too long stop putting it off. Yes we all are busy. The holidays make it even more so. In spite of this, make a minute, take an hour, you will feel so much better and your outlook will improve.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Birthday Cake Decorating

Tomorrow is the big party for the bears combined Birthday’s. There will be presents, games, food and of course the very special Birthday cake. This year I am once again taking on the task of baking and decorating the cakes. My experience in this area has not been stellar. When it comes to cooking and especially baking I can make decadence out of the ingredients. However when it comes to decorating I am not skilled or even competent. Yet here I am trying again.

I blame the fact that I am abysmal at decorating on not getting enough practice. Three times a year is not adequate preparation. This is why there is a niche for cake decorators. Alas I strive every year to be the Mom who makes the best Birthday cake.

Last year for Teagan’s Birthday I made a Tinker Bell cake. Or at least that is what I called it. We had Grandparents and their Great Aunt coming in so I saved the baking and decorating till the very end. The cake was lemon with just the right amount of tart in the midst of sweet. Perfect. Then came the decorating.

I thought I was being easy on myself by making a 9” round and doing a 2D image of Tinker Bell. Ha! I frosted the overall cake. Good job. Next, time for the actual figure. I started with her dress. This was surprisingly painless. When I started mixing the food coloring for the body I was having issues in achieving a pale peach. You see Tinker Bell is a fair fairy and food coloring doesn’t come in fair. Mix, mix, mix. The best I could accomplish was spray tan orange. Have you ever seen an orange fairy? Me neither. Running out of time I sucked it up and decided to proceed. Neck merging into the first arm. Not bad. Next arm... oh, stop that… no, not that wide… gorilla arm. Damn. I tried lifting the excess off with a toothpick, smudging white frosting over some more. Okay so Tink has been working out. Moving on. Legs. Now this fairy does have massive thighs as if she does squats every morning before breakfast. So I go for thin and add where I need to. Right leg… left leg… hey, not bad. Little green shoes. Yea, that just looks like blobs. Running out of time, tick, tick, tick. Time for spray tan face. Oh wow. That’s bad. The arms, the legs, but having the face with the spray tan makes her look like an oompa loompa. Tick, tick, tick. Blonde hair. Not the best tresses but you at least know it’s hair! Facial features. Eyes and mouth only, because the nose is not going to stand out in the sea of orange on this face. Left eye… right eye… dot of blue for each… outline in black. Uh, that looks odd. Maybe because they would be better suited for a larger face that was on a man. On we go. Mouth. Red puckered lips. Lips that look like they have been injected with silicon. Seriously at this point Tinker Bell has morphed into a street walker. Short skirt, spray tan, heavy eye make-up with a slathering of red lipstick. The gorilla arm just adds to the mystique. Ah yes and to finish off the look, scary blue things sprouting out of her back suppose to be light and airy fairy wings. It looks like she is holding gigantic scissors behind her back with her gorilla arm. I suppose women of the night need protection too. I can do no more. Damage that is. I write Teagan’s name and add sprinkles.

As I stand back and scrutinize the disaster in front of me I feel little arms wrap around my leg. “Hello Mommy” comes a semi-sleepy voice of my then almost two year old Teagan. She spies the counter. “Me Birfday cake?” I pick her up to show her the mess. “MOMMY! That’s Tinker Bell!” And she hugs me.

And that is why I will once again make a cake. She knew who it was and more importantly was over joyed that Mommy had made her Tinker Bell.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Perfect Shot

Christmas is around the corner and that means it’s time to take the annual photo for the Christmas cards. A strange phenomenon happens when you go from one to two or to a family. It is no longer appropriate to send Christmas cards out that do not have a family picture on the front. Now this phenomenon reverses itself when the kids go off to college. At that point no one wants to see two old people wishing them a Happy Holiday.

This year I thought I would try a different approach. I want to have three pictures on the card one of Teagan, one of Kaitlyn, and one of Hubby and me. That way I could capture each one of us perfectly. Group photos in the past have been so hard to get everyone to smile and look at the same time. By the time it was over my frustration was so high it was almost not worth it. Except I must fulfill the duties for the Christmas card vogue.

I started the day by showering the bears, blow drying their hair and trying to curl the longer pieces. My curling iron is the crappiest ever made and it’s older than dirt. Plus the bears have never had their hair “done” before. This made for no fun for Mommy. Not wanting the normal frustration of the Christmas card incident I quickly gave up and decided they were cute enough. After I put them in their pink girly outfits from their Aunt Lori I let them loose into the yard so I could commence snapping away and get a lovely sunshine happy shot.

I’m optimistic.

I let them run around and play with flowers and sticks and I clicked away. After looking through a few of the shots I felt I had a good one of Kaitlyn but not of Teagan. So I started focusing my attention on her. This just makes her wild.

Anyone have pets? You know how you can clap or make a strange noise and the animal will look at you? Kids don’t work as easily. I made noises, talked to her, pleaded with her, lied that I had a lizard, but Teagan would not hold eye contact with me. “Teagan, look at me.” “I am.” As she is clearly looking at a tree, the sky, the ground, anything and everything but me. “Teagan, look at me!” “I am looking at you!” I have no idea what she is looking at but if it was me I wouldn’t have been turning so red. At this point I have enough avant garde pictures of her to fill a book and a few pictures of her looking at me with strange faces of her holding up “dinosaur claw” for the camera.

Apparently the group shot isn’t the problem, Teagan is.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Grumpy Big Head

I'm grumpy.


I cannot concentrate when I'm grumpy.

Tomorrow will be a better day.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Facial Rash

Friday night was Girl’s Night Out. Nothing overly exciting; dinner and shopping. I left the kids at home with Daddy and didn’t think twice about strolling in at 9:30. Yeah, I know, wild and crazy lady. As I get older I appreciate time to talk and enjoy my friends rather than testing my stomach’s capacity for Rum Runners. We talked all through dinner and made our waiter squirm as he waited to refill our table as we chatted away. After a little shopping we stood outside talking until my feet began to hurt. It was so nice to catch up and laugh.

When I got home I was basking in my adult merriment until I realized something was wrong with Teagan. From across the room it looked like she had a light smearing of some food around her mouth. When I went to wipe it off I realized it was not food. She had a rash of some sort surrounding her mouth and spreading towards her chin. Tiny pricks the color of blood. It was flat with no raised places. I touched it an asked her if it hurt. “Yes.” So I touched her elbow, belly and hand and asked if that hurt all with the reply of “yes.” This was not a reliable test. There was no fever and as far as I could tell it was not bothering her. I decided I would wait to see what it looked like in the morning.

As I was unwinding from my evening I did what every neurotic Mother does and looked on the internet for the possible rashes. With the condition Teagan had and more importantly did not have, my mind was set at ease that it was most likely linked to something she ate and would subside. That is until I read the last rash. Petechiae. Heard of it? No because it’s a rare rash indicating internal bleeding. ~Freak out time!~

I have a Doctor in the family that I can call at the drop of a hat about anything with the girls. However it was really late at this point so I put my fear aside and wait until morning.

In the morning the rash is still there but looks a tad darker on the chin. I call the Doctor. I think it took all of Doctor’s willpower not to mock me for thinking she had Petechiae. He felt that it was definitely something she had ate and either was too spicy (she loves spicy) or had remained on her face too long and irritated it but not anything serious.

After that the day took on its normal tones. We went out to get upcoming presents for little Bear Birthday’s. At the store I looked at Teagan’s rash once again but in fluorescent lighting. And that’s when it dawn on me. This was not a rash. It was a bruise. Daddy had not watch the bears like a hawk; I do not hold this against him as he is not a neurotic Mother. I figured out that Teagan had taken a plastic cup and sucked it onto her face so it would stick and left it too long. I have seen her do this and immediately pulled it off and told her no. Left to her own this apparently will cause blood pricks to come to the surface of her little face that appear as a rash and trigger neurotic Mother into action.

So what did we learn? Teagan is naughty. Daddy needs to tap into his hovering abilities. Mommy is neurotic yet when forced to be, logical. The internet is an co-conspirator to all irrational fears.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Irish Twins

My girls are a 380 days apart. One year fifteen days. By definition they are not Irish Twins which have to be born within twelve months of each other. I tell you the extra fifteen days do not count. They are twins in every way. We have to buy two of everything or we have issues.

As posted, yesterday was Teagan’s Birthday. There were no presents. This had already been decided by Hubby and I. Neither girl will get presents on their day this year. We are having a joint Birthday party in between their days and that is when the presents will flow. Why? Did you not listen to me earlier? They go bat sh*t crazy if one gets something and the other doesn’t. They are only 3 and almost 2 so it’s completely understandable. Maybe next year this will be able to be explained to them and they can decide what they want. I think the current plan works well. So well, that I won’t be surprised if it’s a tradition in the making.

Now for their day we do fun things and they get a special dinner with a cake. Nothing elaborate but still a marking of their Birthday. Kaitlyn being the youngest doesn’t fully understand why Teagan got to blow out the candle and not her too. This was a little touchy but she got over it okay. In fact the overall low key celebration would have been perfect if I wasn’t stupid.

Seriously have I mentioned that at times my brain just up and leaves and goes shopping or something?

I got Teagan a Birthday card with a cut out princess crown. As soon as Teagan put it on Kaitlyn’s chin hit her chest and she sulked out of the room into the living room and plopped on the floor. Daddy who rarely has brain issues (his brain leaves when I ask him to do/remember/fix something) came to the rescue. He took the remainder of the card and spliced it to make Kaitlyn a crown too. No it didn’t have the glitter gems or scalloped edges but it had some princess’ on it and was a hat. She was happy.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Teagan!

This is a very special A Thousand Words Thursday for me. For eight years I was told by doctors that due to a previous illness I would not be able to conceive. At times this would bother me but I wasn’t at a place in my life that I felt children fit so the fleeting moment would pass. I’m so glad Doctors can be wrong.

When I met my future husband the things I wanted or desired changed. Within weeks we knew that our future was together so I shared with him what I had been told. Even though we both wanted kids he decided he wanted a future of “us” more. In April of 2006 our world changed. On April Fool’s day I took a pregnancy test and it was positive. I will admit that I was freaked out at first. Future Hubby was beyond cool and collected and just this side of ecstatic. He told his family the same day.

She was born early and weighed only 4 lbs 15 oz. She had two holes in her heart, sleep apnea and a small brain bleed. They kept her for five days in NICU. The last two days I was not in the hospital and leaving her at night was almost more than I could endure. However we were blessed and were able to take her home. We named her Teagan Shae which means “Beautiful Gift.”

I never knew how much I could love someone. It is the closest to unconditional love that I could possibly feel. I am amazed by her every day. And even on the hardest days she can laugh and everything wrong melts away.

My Mom use to tell me and my Brother that she was made to be our Mom. I thought that was corny. Now I know that I was made to be Teagan’s Mom. And then Kaitlyn’s.

Happy 3rd Birthday Teagan! You are and always will be my Tea-Bear.

Please enjoy other wonderful bloggers photos for A Thousand Words Thursday at Cheaper Than Therapy.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Thank You Veterans


To our active military and our veterans, thank you. Thank you for having the bravery and strength to serve our nation.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Do you have a pen pal? Not your email buddies or cell phone pals. But a pen/pencil to paper pen pal. I do. And I, in truth, don’t write to them enough. Why? Because it easier to zoom the emails or pick up a phone. However, I find that I share more and deeper in my hand written prose than any email.

My pen pal writes more often than I do and I’m sure they have no idea how precious their letters really are to me. They make me push away the computer and tune out the TV to concentrate on their written word. And for a few moments I give them my undivided attention. My email friends don’t get that privilege as it is easy to read an email and still watch TV. I can only hope my letters receive the same beseeching attention. Even though it’s not a face to face tête-à-tête I can sense their essence through the letters as they can sense mine.

I know since the emails have become more frequent with my friends the actual conversations have become less. My girl friends and I use to have coffee, tea or go window shopping to catch up with what was new in our lives. We still get together but it is much less than before. Yes we are all watching our wallets but that doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t be able to share an hour to sit in a park and just talk.

Don’t get me wrong I love sending and receiving emails. Some make me laugh, others cry and some question what my friend was thinking. I know I forward plenty of those too. Yet I find I am longing for some face time.

So as you peruse your Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, blogs or other social networking sites take into account what you are not sharing with your “friends.” Face time is more significant in build those connections than your mouse.

I need to go write a letter.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Thousand Words Thursday 11-05-2009

It’s movie time. Your kids are nestled in their favorite chairs and you hand them which one of their favorite snacks? Candy? Popcorn? No, cherry tomatoes.

My kids eat cherry tomatoes like they are candy. And even though I love the fact that they eat vegetables and fruit, at the same time it literally turns my stomach. I hate tomatoes. Yes I like marinara and ketchup but those are cooked tomatoes so don’t bother pointing out that they are made from tomatoes.

I can actually feel bile rising in my throat as I hear their teeth puncture through the skin, the juice squirting their tongues and oozing over their teeth and gums, while the acidic pulp is gnashed with the rest of it. So this to me is a thankful and repulsive moment all in one.

Oh and they eat the entire tub of cherry tomatoes in one sitting. And asked for more.

Please join other wonderful bloggers for A Thousand Words Thursday at Cheaper Than Therapy.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Imaginary Play

The girls were playing nicely in the living room while I cleaned the kitchen. Since I wasn't directly eyeing them you may be wondering how I know it was nice. There were no screaming or crying.

I walk into the room to scan for misplaced juice cups that need to be washed and eye the imaginary play taking place.

~ Come on doggy Kaitlyn.
~ Here you go doggy Kaitlyn.

Obediently Kaitlyn is acting like a dog and doing what her big sister tells her. And as her treat Teagan is throwing her Kix cereal onto the floor as if she was in fact a real dog.

Cute, yes.

Imaginative, yes.

Disturbed Mommy immediately in her quest to calculate just when I had vacuumed last, big yes.

I hope this imaginary play developed huge brain cells to counter act the damaged done to the other ones due to germs.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Candy, candy, candy

Halloween was great and I let go of the apron strings and let my kids eat candy.

and more candy...

and more candy...
okay no more candy.