Archive for August, 2011

Quick Trip

August 15th, 2011 at 11:54 pm » Comments (4)

So I left that horse-y post there forever. Sorry about that. I meant to post something else before leaving town for a few days and just forgot.

It was a fantastic, short trip in which we saw a whole lotta relatives and relatives’ boyfriends and a stepbrother I hadn’t seen in ages and it was ALL so very good.

A few highlights:

Seth-5yr, antsy-pantsy after being in the car for more than 6 hours decides to start happily shrieking, “I like ‘buh-kay-nays!” over and over. I was exhausted from a sleepless night and a long drive and completely missed the exit to my dad’s. Instead of exiting, I was actually trying to find out what he meant by this announcement, since he usually means something completely weird and incorrect by the word bikini. Mike said he was just messing with me. And… it totally worked. Also, if a boy yells, “I like bikinis!” then you probably don’t need to waste your time asking him what he means by this. He’s a boy. And he’s yelling that he likes bikinis. It’s fairly self-explanatory, lady, so just drive.


My dad and stepmom wore those 3 kids out. We ate lunch together before leaving town today, and the adults just talked without interruption because the kids were so exhausted they just sat and stared off into space like we’d drugged them. You gotta be tough to party with PawPaw and MiMi.


Got to see LaLa, her boyfriend, and his two really cute kids. (They are VERY cute together, this group of 4.)


Got to FINALLY meet HolyCousin’s boyfriend, who is nice and funny and loves all the outdoorsy biking/hiking stuff that she does. SO nice to spend time with them.


Accidentally picked up a guy at a really weird chicken restaurant. The hostess asked me how many in the party and  that answer had changed several times in the previous two hours and I couldn’t remember, so I turned to Mike- who was right behind me – and said, “How many of us are there, honey? I forgot.” And as if THAT isn’t airheaded enough, I can’t help but notice that this guy is shorter than Mike. He has thick gray hair, side parted and wavy and very Clark Kenty, especially with the glasses. A gray t-shirt when Mike had a brown one on earlier. And even though I’m taking all of this in, it just doesn’t click that THIS IS NOT MIKE, GET AWAY, STOP TALKING, SHUT UP, KELSEY. That obvious ‘problem’ does not really sink in until he says, “Uh.. Will you be joining me?”

At which point I did this awful, hop up and down in one place thing, fanning hands in front of my face as if there were a fire (as you do), and apologizing and then running and then fixing my best “I AM SO ANNOYED” expression on my face for when Mike finally came around the corner – which was totally wasted because he’d gone all the way back to the car and by the time he came back I’d given up and was sitting under the cool, wet spray of a ceiling-mounted mister and had mostly forgotten it. I can’t stay irritated for long. Blessing and a curse.


Today a guy in a dirty white t shirt told me he loved me in a gas station parking lot. I guess if you sow ‘picking up strangers inappropriately,’ then you reap the same thing.  I didn’t  know what to say to his declaration, so I hopped back in the car and locked the doors. But that seemed rude, so I smiled and waved, because I’m too Southern for my own good sometimes, and he was probably just being nice. Or drunk. I do not know.  He wasn’t slurring, but his shirt was suspiciously dirty.


Then I got stuck behind a house for three hours. Ugh. This particular chopped-in-half house moving down the road was wider even than those normally are and it slowed us down considerably.


The kids slept. Mike watched tv shows on his phone. And I drove behind a house traveling way below the speed limit.


We got home and sitting in the driveway was my gorgeous big truck all covered in mud. The night before we left, it rained. Finally! Rain! So I got up early and went mudding before we left on our trip. I kept it brief, because I had a near-miss with a telephone pole and we didn’t really have time for me to take out the local utility services before a roadtrip.  Caden-7yr either didn’t know that I’d gone that morning, or he forgot, because he said, “Whoah – looks like Grandmother went mudding while we were gone!”  And… he was serious about this odd conclusion, which only made it that much better.


So glad to be back! I hope your weekends were wonderful, too.


Seth-5yr Should Be In Charge More Often

August 10th, 2011 at 9:56 pm » Comments (9)

Seth-5yr has had a burning, urgent summer long request that today - finally – we fulfilled. The child HAD to ride a horse. I was happy to oblige. I like horses.

Note the dimples. They say it all, right?

(if you can’t see them, I think the pic gets bigger if you click on it. those dimples are worth it. photo credit: my mom)

I wanted my mom to come with us and maybe also ride, and she sputtered at the idea. Which was amusing enough, but then she said, “What?! Horses? That is SO unnatural.”

“Horses are unnatural…?!” I made an unfortunate snorty laugh sound right into the phone.

“No. Riding horses is unnatural.” (As if this made so much more sense.) “I’m supposed to sit on a horse that is, what, FOUR feet WIDE? I don’t think so.”

I couldn’t talk her into it.  Clearly. But she graciously came along and we had a lovely day.

Caden-7yr was… nervous. Very, very nervous.

Seth-5yr, checking on his brother.

Caden-7yr’s nerves settled after about 10 minutes and then he chatted nonstop with the woman who was leading us.

This is the guy who owned the place, and my mom photographed him because she couldn’t believe the gun he carried.



I didn’t notice, and didn’t hear about the gun until lunchtime later. “Kelsey? It was a huge pearl handled six shooter thing strapped to his leg!”

“Nope. Didn’t see it.”

Then the boys told me what guns and knives the other cowboy had who had ridden with us. I didn’t notice those either. I did notice the first guy’s really crazy eyes though, and that creeped me out. Later I found this picture I’d taken, and noticed the very appropriate sign that I hadn’t seen earlier.

In my defense, I was too busy thinking about clouds and trees, lizards, kids, canyon walls, blue sky, horses, hanging on to Seth-5yr, and interesting rock formations. The boys wanted to discuss none of those things, though. They were too busy discussing horse poop and the flies who feast upon it.

Ethan-11yr said it was fine that I didn’t notice the weapons, since “9 out of 10 times, you don’t see something you’re not expecting to see.”

“So… all of you were expecting to see guns and knives today?”

“No. That must have been our 1 out of 10.”

Of course.


When we’d ridden down into the canyon, I explained to Seth-5yr what to do with the reins  and handed them off to him.  He put on his deeper than usual business voice and said, “It’s a beautiful day to be on a horse, Mom.”

And it was. It was a good idea he had.

When we got back from our hour long ride, Caden-7yr got off his horse and promptly collapsed to the ground. The guide looked at him and laughed and said he had Cowboy Spaghetti Legs – and mentioned that was the fattest horse they owned and that probably had something to do with it.  Caden-7yr jumped up and was okay.

Tonight we curled up on the couch and watched Secretariat and Caden-7yr expressed interest in becoming a jockey.  So sweet.

Seth-5yr thanked me all afternoon and evening. He snuggled up to me and kissed the back of my hand repeatedly while we watched the movie.  He kissed my cheek. A lot. And when I tucked him in just now, he sighed happily and said, “Today is the day I really started to yuv horses, Mommy.”

Big day.

I’m so glad I got to go along for the ride.


Seth-5yr Explains T-Ball

August 9th, 2011 at 1:58 pm » Comments (4)

Seth-5yr’s career as a t-ball sensation continues. Not by my doing. If I had it my way, we’d be lazing around the last of the summer with nothing more exciting to do than cut toenails and clean closets.

Mike wanted to sign him up for a league we hadn’t tried before and I agreed, if he’d first look into the time/energy commitments. But…. yeah right. How it actually went: Mike didn’t look into the time commitments, signed up, mentioned he was increasing his travel schedule and wouldn’t really be around much, THEN we found out this league meant some Serious Time Commitment.

It’s okay, though. It’s for a short period and we’ll live and breathe t-ball for a few more weeks and then we’re done. Seth-5yr is playing first base, and doing a great job thanks to his ability to run at least twice as fast as anyone else and his total dedication to staying tuned into the game – a rare ability in this age group. When he’s not grabbing his crotch (and making me just DIE an uncomfortable, embarrassed mommy death in the stands) or spitting – because that’s so fun, too. He’s new to both of these authentically awful baseball habits, and I’d like them to stop. Suggestions welcome. He’s wearing a size bigger pants to his next game – that was my mom’s suggestion, given halfway through his last game as we watched all the grabbing and adjusting and geez, why can’t he just pick his nose like the other kids?

He might move to pitcher, because the current pitcher is struggling in this role.  So just now, we were outside and I asked him to explain the role of pitcher to me so I can gauge how much he understands and where he might need some direction in case he switches position.

I wish y’all could ask Seth-5yr to explain something. It’s often hysterically funny. First, he lowers his voice so it’s pretty deep and business-like. He dips his chin and puts a hand on a hip. He clenches his jaw as he thinks and his cute baby dimples show up.

“Well, Mom. The pisher needs to be yooking everywhere for where to get the outs. And I am very good at dat.”

“Yes. You really, really are.”

“And the pisher also has to get the ball back to the Pisher’s Ma’am FAST because dat is what kills the play. The pisher has to run fast fast fast and jump on the Pisher’s Ma’am and be real good at doing dat at the right time because that makes all the runners stop getting runs and more bases.”

Apparently, Seth-5yr is unfamiliar with the word ‘mound.’ The meaning changes significantly if you use the word “ma’am” instead. He had the important parts right, though, and he was so serious and deep voiced about it that I just hugged him and thanked him for the explanation.

Already, other coaches are inquiring as to his future availability and wanting to discuss his career trajectory and asking to be involved. I figure with all of that specialized attention, one of these guys will teach him the right vocabulary eventually and maybe I’ll just focus on getting him to quit spitting instead.


“A” is for…

August 7th, 2011 at 7:45 pm » Comments (5)

Today I had the highest honor of teaching the 4 yr old class at church. They are SO cute. For some reasons, all the little girls in this class have names that start with “A” – and that makes life so very much harder than necessary for a substitute like myself. I’m good with names. Normally. But not 6 “A” names. One of them walks in the door and all I can do is squint, think hard, and come up with, “Huh. It starts with an ‘A’….” over and over and over and over again.

I’d been there 2 minutes when my one little “A” girls collapsed in my lap in a fit of tears. TWO MINUTES, and I broke a perfectly good kid. I asked her what she’d done this weekend and she told me what relatives she’d visited and then she just fell apart because she missed them so much and they lived so far away. She cried. I held her in my lap and patted her back and talked her through it. Then she patted my back. Then I thought I’d cry because that’s just so sweet. But I didn’t because more “A” girls started showing up and there was stuff to do.

The boys, whose names are more varied, practically taught the lesson themselves when they built a fort that kept coming apart and we needed to discuss the walls of Jericho falling. Helpful, those boys.

After church I went to the bathroom to wash my feet. All through the service I was very aware of how dusty and dirty they were from the playground. A girl about 10 came in and immediately asked me what I was doing. I explained. She looked unimpressed. “Well. They do that a lot in the Bible. Wash feet.”

“Exactly! I was just thinking that myself,” I said and smiled at her. I didn’t know who she was and was about to ask her name when she rolled her eyes and said, “We aren’t in the Bible,” and turned and walked away with a commendable amount of sass for such a cute kid. I decided I liked her but didn’t really want to talk to her anymore, finished washing my feet, and didn’t hang around to ask her name.

It probably started with “A.”

Milk Happens

August 3rd, 2011 at 4:34 pm » Comments (6)

Maybe I’m just more tolerant of displays of female anger, and all, in light of last week – BUT.

I think the Ohio lady who got arrested for spraying officers with breast milk should be freed and official records wiped clean of the whole incident because DUDE – it happens. You know? I’ve done worse stuff purely by accident and perfectly sober, like EVERY day of my life and let’s just free up a bed in prison for someone else, and let the nice lady go.

It really does happen. Tell me you haven’t been lactating and some baby nearby gives a cute little cry and milk didn’t shoot off into nowhere that you intended. RIGHT? As if you could STOP THAT? Uh, NO! It HAPPENS, and thanks a lot God, because that can be so awkward – but really. NOT THE DRUNK OHIO LADY’S FAULT. Sure, she shouldn’t have been drinking so much so that it didn’t make sense not to say, “hey. I am a breastfeeding mother and to show you I will now remove my breast from my dress as a visual aid so you will understand” – at which point milk went flying – but just because the milk sprayed does not mean it was intentional.

There was not necessarily intent, and that matters!  THAT is my point. Milk is hard to contain and can be difficult to predict and it should not simply be assumed that it was intentionally repurposed into a liquidized weapon, trajectory perfectly calculated, and the result being a successful assault against peace officers. (And, the obvious which I cannot help but add: It’s MILK. Like, with nutritional value. From a BOOB. Is this REALLY a felony?)

She’s a special ed teacher who is not in the news for having sex with her students and so I really like her already. I’m a fan of teachers who do not have sex with students. She may face the additional felony charge of ‘harassing a law enforcement officer with a bodily substance’.  Felony. Seems a bit much.

I’m on your side, Mrs. Robinette. I had a similar accidental milk spraying incident also at a wedding reception once, thanks to a hungry baby I will not name out of pure love and the WRONG choice in clothing but I was feeling fat and it was the only wedding appropriate attire that fit my post-baby body even if it was too stretchy on top and the hungry kid yanked down on the fabric and yeah, whatever. Milk happens. QUITE a memorable wedding reception.  My incident was without anger and without alcohol, but I can make a complete idiot of myself while perfectly sober and trying NOT TO and so I know. These things just HAPPEN.

Ohio? You can call me as a witness. This stuff totally happens, and I’ll be happy to testify.

(Besides, there’s some great blog friends up there I’d love to meet.)

Hot, Cold, and Charmed

August 3rd, 2011 at 12:26 am » Comments (9)

As long as there have been little boys in this home, there has been a strange phenomenon known as Night Night Charm.  All 3 boys were born with the knack for using this incredible technique to ward off their bedtime. As babies or toddlers or older, they just got CUTER at bedtime. Like, it’s time to start walking for the first time ever? Or talking? Or folding origami out of wet wipes or curing cancer or whatever else they were doing that was SO COOL that I could not POSSIBLY put them to bed?

A lot of kids get fussy when they’re tired. Mine get suave, funny, witty, charming, smart, creative, and anything BUT fussy or whiny. I enjoy them SO much that I want to remain in their company – this is the nature of the spell they all cast.

Tonight there was a glimpse of Night Night Charm. Seth-5yr didn’t really want to stay up. He’d had a t-ball practice and was tired. But he did want the Snuggie I was cuddled into on the couch.  He got out of bed and came over to me and asked if he could have it. He said please and he looked adorable. All big eyed and cold and really in need of a Snuggie. But I said no, go back to bed.

And he said,  ”But Mommy. You are my precious senorita.”

I don’t know where he got that. I do not care. I melted at this adorable display of Night Night Charm and folded him into a hug and laughed into his neck and kissed him to pieces and then I sent him back to bed with my Snuggie. He looked particularly smug.

I’m powerless against Night Night Charm. Always have been.

I don’t know why this house is SOO i-need-a-snuggie cold right now, considering the whole country is in the unrelenting grip of Hot and Heat and Some More Hot. I think it has something to do with air conditioner zones not working together. If you raise the temperature it goes WAY high and I just don’t even bother anymore. instead, I freeze and everyone else likes it cold.

Which is why I was telling my stepmom today that i spend a lot of time outside, even right now in the heat.

It’s a dry heat here so it’s not that bad, and I much prefer it to the refrigerated house. I was outside today, thinking how great it felt and how it probably wasn’t REALLY that hot anyway and then I noticed my phone was not working.

My phone is apparently way DELICATE.

It had a yellow triangle symbol and the word “Temperature” at the top of the screen and underneath it read, “iPhone must cool down before you can use it.”

I suppose my phone would prefer staying inside until the heat wave passes. Isn’t that strange? I’m telling y’all in case you also have sissy phones and just don’t know it yet.

i’ll leave mine inside tomorrow. Maybe with a Snuggie.