Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Life In A Southern Town

Happy Leap Day, friends!

I read an article a few weeks ago about a little old lady who was born a bazillion (exact number) years ago but is turning 21 today due to her status as a Leap baby. I could do the math, but we all know that isn't going to happen...Happy Birthday Little Old Lady! Go drink your first beer, but please, don't act like a hussy!

To celebrate the ancient Leap baby's birthday, and to celebrate Leap Day in general, I've swapped blogs for the day with my friend Kristen Daukas from Four Hens and a Rooster. She's fabulous you guys - a Southern lady, sassy & hilarious, and she's a Ginger to boot (I love me some Gingers, obviously). Thank you, Head Hen, for swapping with me!

Read up y'all, and don't forget to check out my post on Four Hens and a Rooster detailing my recent episode of child neglect!

Happy Leap Day! Or Happy Wednesday if Leap Day's against your religion or something!


I was born and raised in NC and made my first move out of the state at the age of 22. Over the next 15 years, I would live in Chicago, Vail and Philadelphia.. with a couple of moves BACK to NC worked in there for good measure. I resisted living here in NC during my single days, but when you have a family and you live in an area where there is NO family, suddenly “home” looks a little bit sweeter. We packed our bags and our truck for what I hope will be the last time and headed back to the South.

There’s a misconception that anyone who lives below the Mason-Dixon line is a slow, back-ass hick. While we certainly have our fair share of those, it’s by no means every single person and the majority of “new” people that I meet are in fact from other areas of the country. You see… they’ve learned what life long residents have always known – life is simpler in the South.

The South is as steeped in tradition like a teabag is steeped in water. We definitely do things a little bit differently here, but I think most (not ALL) of the things are really nice.

For instance…

Cotillion: I scoffed when we first were invited for Mackenzie go thru Cotillion. I was amazed that it was still around – How antiquated could you possibly get, I thought?! But she wanted to do it (all of her friends were doing it, of course) so we showed up - white gloves, dress and all. She’s now on her 3rd year and I’m already planning on Sydney starting next season, too. They’re taught manners, proper dining techniques, the proper way to enter a room, etc. In today’s time of text conversations, I can’t see a thing wrong with giving them a little nudge in proper etiquette.

Comfort Food: If someone dies or gets sick in your church or neighborhood, the first thing most Southern women do is pull out their cookbooks and their casserole dishes. We know the best way to help a family is to make sure they have food on the table and apparently, a LOT of it. We’re not an overly religious family by any means but I remember growing up and my Grandmother was AND she was on the “committee” at church that would get that phone call. The Pastor was the first to know and then the elder women. Pies, casseroles, fried chicken and gallons of sweet tea and lemonade would magically appear on the doorstep and usually before sundown. I was always amazed that this wasn’t the case in other parts of the country because it really does help the family in need.

Door to Door Anything: This one still blows my mind. I remember growing up and every Saturday, without fail, at some point my mother would run thru the house turning off lights and shutting the doors. All because, down the street, she could see the door-to-door evangelists coming. They would show up and try to sing their gospel to whoever would listen. You should come to our church! Have you been saved from the eternal bowels of Hell? Have you accepted Jesus Christ as your savior? And the handouts that they would leave behind! My GOD! If I didn’t believe in God before, I’m not sure their pamphlets were going to win me over. You would NEVER see anyone going door to door north of the Mason-Dixon line. Anyone doing so would surely be taking their life in their hands. But, it’s still a common occurrence here.. from religion to windows to books to whatever.

Big Ass Churches: I’m not talking majestic cathedrals like St. Patrick’s or Notre Dame. I’m talking your run of the mill Southern Baptist variety. Where do these people come from to fill these churches? One of my all time favorite stories was from some friends of ours who had just moved down from Chicago who were visited by said door-to-door evangelists. Except they didn’t know they were evangelists so when the couple asked our friends if they’d like to go to Calvary with them, of course our friends response was “Sure! Is that a bar?!”. It wasn’t a bar of course, but rather the biggest church in our town. Needless to say, they didn’t have to worry about a repeat visit. The funny thing is that our churches in NC are NOTHING compared to the ones in Texas.

Pig Pickins’: Yep.. I spelled that right. It’s not a BBQ or a pig roast but rather a pig pickin’. If there’s a pig of any form involved, it’s a pig pickin’ and oh my lord, if you ever get the chance – you have to go. NC BBQ is very special BBQ in that we smoke our pigs and that’s where the true flavor comes from. From there, you have 2 different varieties of NC BBQ – Lexington style and Eastern Style and you usually like one or the other and people are very passionate about which is the “true” style of BBQ. One of my favorite events is our very own family pig pickin’. This year’s party will be our 6th year of smoking a whole hog and while it’s hard work, in the end it’s so worth it.

There are so many endearing qualities to the South. From our laid back mode of life, to our extremely pleasant weather (especially this Winter!) and our (mostly) congenial attitudes. Yes, we can be slow and backwards in some ways, but I think if you were to come down, sit on the porch and have a glass of tea (sweet, of course!) you’d have no problem getting into our groove, y’all!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Dinner Music

When I came home from work tonight, Chris was doing the dishes I conveniently didn't get to the last few nights. He may or may not have been motivated by last night's "Chriiiiis! Can you please do the dishes tomorrow for me?!" during last night's supper-making temper tantrum (I'm working with 3 feet of counter space, I feel entitled to a hissy fit any time I cook), but we'll pretend for the sake of pretending that he did it because he's appreciative of how hard I work all day.

Before long, I joined him in the kitchen to start the preparations for tonight's meal: chicken gyros that I found on Pinterest over the weekend and since I'm practically incapable of cooking without music blaring, my next move was to log in to my Pandora account and walk back to my work space.

Typically, my stations du jour are Grace Potter & the Nocturnals, Van Morrison, and the Silversun Pickups. Tonight, I wasn't expecting it when my Best of the 80s Reloaded station blasted through the speakers at full volume.

I decided to leave it and began de-boning a chicken while my husband pulled sink duty. Today was a fun day, and it called for some fun music. Plus the combination of totally rad 80s tunes and my husband always makes for an interesting time.

The following is a damn-near exact transcript of the next 30 minutes or so - including the playlist.

'Everybody Wants To Rule The World" - Tears For Fears
Chris: Jesus...
Me: Oh yeeeeah! heading to the fridge to get a drink Hey what kind of horrible husband doesn't have cold soda waiting in the fridge when his wife gets home from work?
Chris: The kind of husband that does the dishes because his wife won't.
Me: Eh.
Chris: You know the music of the 80s was the basis of modern techno, right?
Me: Oh bullshit! Techno sucks.
Chris: Techno is awesome. Listen to that synthesizer - you know I'm right babe.
Me: I hate you.
'Here I Go Again' - Whitesnake
Me: Yessss! You'd better sing this one!
Chris: I don't even know what this is.
Me: Yes you do. This song is bad ass! Singing in my best hair-band voice 'And I've made up my mind, I ain't wastin no more tiiiime'
Chris: Who sings this?
Me: I don't know - Cinderella?
Chris: What? No! Whitesnake - HA!
Me: Shut up...Hey know who I think should sing this? Your dad's barbershop quartet. Singing again 'Here I go (go, go, go baby ooooh) again on my own (owwwwwwn yeah yeah yeah owwwwn)...'
Chris: I'd pay to see that. Well, probably not.
Me: I would. That would be sooo funny!
'Safety Dance' - Men Without Hats
Chris: Can we turn it off? Seriously - the 80s was the worst era for music.
Me: NO THEY WERE NOT! turning so fast I almost gave myself whiplash
Chris: Yes they were. Well, maybe the 90s were the worst.
Me: How can the 90s be the worst?
Chris: Ok, maybe not the 90s either. The 90s gave us grunge.
Me: ...and the 'That's My Jam' collection! Every song on that baby is a classic!
Chris: no words, just head shaking Have you ever seen this video?
Me: Isn't it about midgets and fairy tales or something?
Chris: What?! No, it's got A midget in it, and they're dancing through an English town. It's not about midgets though. Or fairy tales.
Me: It has a dwarf, that's a fairy tale in my book.
'Under Pressure' - Queen
(Opening chords, we both freeze pretending it's Vanilla Ice, even though that's 90s music)
Me: Yo, VIP - Let's kick it! Followed by random dance moves that only white folks do.
Chris: This isn't Ice Ice Baby.
Me: Um I know that, butthole. Hey I'm really good at de-boning chicken. I'm going to take a break and eat these wing pieces though. You're not supposed to use those parts in gyros. Greek rule.
Chris: Yeah...hey you look pretty hot with all of that chicken fat and skin on your hands...
Me: singing "Da da dun"
Chris: This song's kind of gay actually.
Me: Freddie Mercury wasn't the most masculine dude in the world...
Chris: This is Queen?!
Me: Yup.
Chris: I never knew that! It doesn't sound like you're typical Queen song!
Me: There's a typical Queen sound? I think they're pretty diverse personally. Who did you think it was?
Chris: I don't know. Scorpions maybe?
Jen: Hell no this isn't Scorpions! You'd know if it was Scorpions because I'd have to announce it!
Chris: Yeah, that would've definitely happened.
'What Is Love' - Haddaway
Chris: Oh yeah! immediately starts dancing like Night At the Roxbury
Me: This is a 90s song! Fail!
Chris: Dance with me babe! pins me to the counter dancing
Me: Look! Miles is dancing like they do in the movie!
Chris: He's got moves like his daddy, don't you buddy!
Miles: Datttt!!!!
Me: This song makes me want to kill myself... Followed by very little conversation for the rest of the song.
'Just What I Needed' - The Cars
Chris: Ugh
Me: Ha! You hate The Cars! Ha ha! Doing a Ric Ocasek voice "as long as it was deep - yeah!"
Chris: This song needs to end fast.
Me: random head swivel moves that moms love (with puckered lips for added effect)
Chris: wipes dish water all over my neck, knowing I won't touch him because I'm still pulling chicken.
Me: Gross! Stop!
Chris: Eew disgusting! Soapy water! Yuck!
Me: half-ass attempting to kick him in the baby maker Hey will you turn on the water so I can wash my hands?
Chris: Why don't you just dunk them in the dishwater?
Me: Because they're dirty and your water's dirty and if I 'wash' my hands in your water they won't be clean and if my chicken hands go into the water that you're washing dishes in then you'll have to get new dish water. Don't waste water, Chris!
Chris: Whatever. wipes water on my neck again as I wash my hands.
Me: Uggggggh! I hate you!
Chris: Did he just say 'I needed someone to bleed'?
Me: I think he says 'please'. Why would he say bleed?
'Who's Crying Now' - Journey
Me: Get ready to hear me sing!!!!
Chris: You sound nothing like this guy...
Me: His name is Steve Perry and I hit the high notes just. like. he. does.
Chris: You don't even know the words to this song!
Me: mumbling Something something something WHO'S CRYIN NOW....
Chris: laughing and mocking me
Me: One heart born to run... something somethiiiiing...WHO'S CRYIN NOW....
Chris: Wow! You really do sound just like him...
Me: Told ya! Supper's ready!

What's your 80s music guilty pleasure?

Here's mine. Enjoy.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Passion For Fashion

Once upon a time, there was a little girl with curly light brown hair. She was glamorous, to say the least, and had a strong preference for skirts instead of jeans. From a young age, she knew in her heart of hearts that she would grow up to become a fashion designer and create clothes for princesses and movie stars.

About, eh, 10 years later, I failed my first sewing project in Home Ec class, and decided that maybe I would be better off creating with my mind instead of my hands...

For those of you who didn't know, New York's Mercedes Benz Fashion Week ended Thursday with the presentation of the Fall 2012 collections. I know that not everyone gets heart palpitations over beautiful dresses that we'll never have the opportunity to wear in real life, but there's still a big part of me who fantasizes about glamming it up on the red carpet somewhere.

Who else likes to play dress up? Mia and Marlee - and they let me style them today in the a few of the big trends from the runways of NYC.

(All MBFW photos by Getty Images. All Mia/Marlee photos by Mommy)

Winter Whites at J. Mendel and Calvin Klein
Winter White Marlee wears a rosy cheek. Mia, in Black on Black with a dramatic eye.
Black on Black at Anna Sui and Jill Stuart
A Taste of the Far East on Mia and at the Venexiana show.
Fur accents at Custo Barcelona and Michael Kors. Faux raccoon (and pizza) on my kid.
Mia has a moment of Bohemian Rhapsody, as does the model at Nicole Miller.
Marlee and a model at the Betsey Johnson show sport bright colors and defined brows.

And because everyone knows that you save the gowns for the finale, may I present Big Sis in liquid gold.

Golden Goddesses in Tadashi Shoji, our old curtains, and Reem Acra

The girls had just as much fun doing this as I did putting our looks together, aside from Marlee's hissy fit when I told her she couldn't eat a purple popsicle in the all white outfit!

"Fashion fades, only style remains the same." - Coco Chanel

What is the one trend that you refuse to let die? 

Mine is leopard print because it's both classic and outrageous - the ultimate neutral.

Friday, February 17, 2012


A few friends have told me that I've inspired them to start blogs of their own. 

As flattering as that is (I love when I can feel justified in thinking that I'm doing something remotely cool), I'd like to point out that if I hadn't read the work of these 5 ladies, I wouldn't have been inspired to give it a try myself.

(Listed in sequence of discovery. I'm good with sequences, just not things that should really be a priority in life - like scrubbing the shower or getting the kids immunized.)
  • Enjoying The Small Things by Kelle Hampton - This was the first blog I read religiously. I found her right after Nella was born, while I was newly pregnant with Miles. I read Nella's birth story on my lunch break and bawled the entire time. For those of you who don't know, I work with disabled adults. It's the best job in the entire world, and I'm a better person for all of the experiences my job has allowed me - good and bad. I think the same goes for Kelle. She makes me feel inadequate sometimes with her creativity and optimism, and the fact that she's gorgeous and has a kick ass wardrobe, but I still love her. Kind of like that cousin that you're super proud of, yet a wee bit jealous at the same time.
  • Dig This Chick by Nici Holt Cline - ETST led me to Dig. Nici's photography makes me want to move to the mountains, dress my kids in adorable hand-knit sweaters, and eat food that we've harvested from the garden in our back yard. Then I remember that I hate the great outdoors unless it's 75, sunny, with the slightest breeze and I think I'll stick it out here in Missouri for awhile longer and thank God for the good produce at Price Chopper. Nici is the artsy/Earth mama hiding inside of me. The one that isn't allowed to come out unless we win the lottery. I can't work and garden simultaneously. It wouldn't be fair to the sweet potatoes.
  • Dooce by Heather Armstrong - Dooce was the first blogger that I felt I could relate to. She coats her affections in sarcasm, be they for family, home, or career and somehow, you still know that she means asshole as a term of endearment. She is witty and hilarious, and brutally honest. Plus, she's currently growing a pixie cut, like some other chick I know. Right now, we resemble Alex P. Keaton (her blonde, me brunette, respectively), but someday we'll be at bob level and then it's on like Donkey Kong.
  • The Pioneer Woman by Ree Drummond - Ree loves butter. I love butter. Ree loves basset hounds. I don't really like dogs, but I bought my kids Charlie the Ranch Dog when it came out and we've read it approximately 45 trillion times. Ree's husband is a cowboy with a cute butt. My husband is a computer salesman with a cute butt. We both hate jiggly tummies and love handles, but don't have the willpower to cut delicious out of our vocabulary. WE'RE ALMOST THE SAME PERSON!!!
  • The Bloggess by Jenny Lawson - Jenny is so wrong, that it just feels 100% right 60% of the time. (Name that movie - unless you're my brother. Jimmy, you're not allowed to play since we quote that at least once a week...Winner gets a high five!) Random conversations with her husband (Victor) about things that make no sense whatsoever to someone not there in that exact moment? Their retelling are her specialties. You will catch yourself saying "What the fuck is she talking about?!" at least once in most posts, sometimes twice. You'll love it enough to tell your friends about it. You'll definitely start thinking you need to take a photo each time you see a large metal rooster or an exquisitely taxidermized mouse dressed in a tiny costume.
I don't read their blogs daily, rather I wait until Saturday morning and read them over a big cup of coffee before the kids get up. That's my 'Mama Time' - motivation to do a little of it all: to enjoy the small things, to keep my roots planted firmly, to put a humorous spin on the frustrating or mundane, to cook because I love it and we all deserve to treat ourselves once in awhile, to be honest about who I am and not put on an elaborate facade to appease the masses.

As for my own blog, I'm still working out that whole 'write and write often' thing. While I love writing, I also love the things I'm able to do while I'm not writing. Things like playing a hardcore game of Dance Central 2 with all 3 kids. Things like reading the last 3 issues of Elle and Vogue that have been waiting patiently in the magazine rack. Things like painting my toenails and tweezing these crazy caterpillars perched above my eyes...

Tomorrow: a fashion show starring my (sometimes) adorable children. I may live in a small town, but I appreciate Fashion Week just as much as any socialite.

Keep writing, all. You're good and you have a special story to tell - yours.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

My Funny Valentine

My funny Valentine 
Sweet comic Valentine
You make me smile with my heart...

I may or may not have said this before, but I'm not the most romantic woman in the world. 

In fact, I typically avoid romance like the plague because it makes me feel awkward as hell. After years of absolute domestic bliss together, the hubs finally gave up on romance - 2/14 goes down just like any other day, aside from the fact that he has to remember to send me flowers.

When the alarm went off this morning, my first thought was that it was Tuesday. My second thought was that it was Valentine's Day. I hurried to get my clothes together and throw them into the dryer because I don't iron, and then went in to wake up Mia and give her a few Valentine gifts before she went to school.

"Mia! Get up right now or you're going to get a spanking!" (FYI: Surprisingly that seems to be a really good line if you want the kiddos to hurry out of bed.) "Now get your behind into the living room so I can brush your hair! Fast!" And of course when she got to the living room, her Valentine surprises were waiting: pink stuffed puppy dog, box of chocolates, bouquet of white 'spider mouths' (spider mums). Mommy is such a trickster!

Once Big Sis was off to school, it was time for the big husband/wife exchange of Valentine cards. I found my card from Chris inside my purse. He's so sneaky, that man.

This is Chris's standard 'day off' outfit. Black socks and all!

I pulled my beloved's card from its inconspicuous Walmart bag on the sideboard and signed it quickly, leaving it on the kitchen table to be read when Chris woke up for the day.

Cartoon girl kind of resembles me. I have bigger boobs and smaller eyes though.
We each bought cards that talk about ourselves, rather than the one we love. Swoon!

When it was time to leave the house, I gave him a half smooch with the routine "Love ya! Have a good day!" Half way to the door, Casanova mumbles "Hap...Valentine...You find your card?" I told him yes that I loved it, gave him another quick peck, and headed to work.

One day out of each work week, I work in our company's main building. As of this week, that day is scheduled on Tuesdays and today's main priority revolved around attaching cards to 250+ carnations before passing them out to all of the amazing people that work for our company. I had lots of help, and I have to say that I absolutely love having a job that allows me to do things like that!

Around noon during my florist stint, I got a text message from Chris saying "HOPE YOUR HAVING A GOOD DAY WE ARE DOWN TO ONE ROLL OF TOILET PAPER AND HAVE YOU GOT YOUR FLOWERS YET". All mine, ladies. All mine. Who needs punctuation when you write words as beautiful as these?

About two minutes later I got another one - from one of the girls in the other office: "UR FLOWERS HAVE ARRIVED!!!" As in, the flowers the hubs had faithfully ordered to keep his butt out of the dog house had been delivered to the building I'm usually working in on Tuesdays. The building where my regular desk is, that also happens to house the company's retail space specializing in floral design/delivery and unique gifts... 

Big ole FTD box delivered for me? Brought in through the front door of the damn company florist? Hi, I'm Jen, Queen of Awkward Moments...

After an informative trip to the Arby's drive-thru ("Hey are you guys hiring? I've got experience, but I had to quit at the last place because I smoke pot when I'm not at work. I don't do it on the clock or anything though." - You, ma'am, have an EXCELLENT chance of being someplace other than our company!) I picked up the flowers with yet another thoughtful card. Thankfully, there were no hard feelings from the in-house florist. Chris is a man - it's always understandable.

Don't most couples reference a zombie-killing redneck on Valentines Day? I sure 'hoe' so...
Each year, I get lilies (because they're damn near impossible for me to kill within the first 24 hours). It takes a few days for the blooms to open, but they're worth the wait. Added bonus this year: red tulips!

The rest of the afternoon was pretty much a blur of activity - including a surprise visit from Granny, who thankfully still loves her children enough to deliver chocolate covered strawberries to us at work! After a quick trip to the grocery store to pick up ingredients for our romantic Valentine supper, I came home to a semi-destroyed house and my happy little family.

Now, I'm going to sign off for the night. The kids are asleep. It's like their subconscious told them to go to sleep early tonight because it's one of the two nights of the year where I'm obligated to let Daddy grope me. 


I feel the need to point out that oddly enough, my Valentine's Day post seems to heavily reference The Walking Dead. If you're not watching it, you should be. If you don't, the walkers have won and that's not good for anyone.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Fergie & Jesus

Someone (maybe it was me...) hit the snooze button too many times this morning and woke up too late for Mia to catch the bus. Someone (definitely me this time) was kind enough to drive her to school after busting ass in the daily transformation that takes us from Flock of Seagulls to Insert Name of Band With Hair That's Better Than Flock of Seagulls.

After a quick stop at the gas station for the breakfast of champions - coffee & cigarettes for me, strawberry milk & breakfast pizza for her - we were rockin' down the highway on our way to the elementary school. When I say rockin', I mean rockin'.

You know that awkward moment when you pass someone on the road and they're obviously feeling the music? You glance over. They glance over. You either pretend not to laugh, or you feel embarrassed for them. They either do a drive-by serenade, or look away in shame. I'm that lady who looks you in the eye and never misses a beat in the song while giving you a thumbs up. "Hello there, fellow traveler! Let me vogue for you as the sun slowly rises..."

I'm not exaggerating. Not only did I vogue, I also did the swim, and the robot to this song. (Yes, I am the epitome of suburban motherhood, driving my Yukon while wearing a cardigan, doing those dance moves to that song. In my defense though, I don't know how to pop or lock.) Mia loved it so much I had to tell her to calm down before she shot strawberry milk out of her nose.

It's a short drive to the school. Maybe 3 songs worth of drive time would be my guess. Once the school was in our line of sight one of my all-time top jams came on. 

If the morning commute had a karaoke contest, I would've won the top prize today. I did my best Bowie impersonation, only to have Mia tell me as I pull up to the school "Mommy, stop singing. You're gonna give me nightmares."

I gave her the raised eyebrow and informed her that I had a voice that sounds like a combination of Fergie and Jesus. My awesome movie reference was completely lost on this genius 6 year old. If I'd said my singing abilities rank up there with Beethoven's composing abilities, maybe she would've giggled. Instead, I got an impatient eye roll. "Love ya, Mom. Bye!"

I happen to have a perfectly nice singing voice. THANKYOUVERYMUCH Mia!

Marlee, on the other hand, begged me later this afternoon to sing. "Yowda! Sing yowda!" when this one came on. How could I refuse? I spoil these kids sometimes.

ME: Hey Mar, do you like when Mommy sings?
MARLEE: Yup! You know all da words!
ME: Who does Mom sound like when she sings?
MARLEE: Tayyer Swif! Oh, and you sound yike Mommy too!
ME: Aw! Hey, do you think I sound like a cross between Fergie & Jesus, Boo?
MARLEE: Yet's not talk about dat...

What do you do that embarrasses  your loved ones? Tell me I'm not alone in my love for the Commuter Concert sessions.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Being Overprotective: Is It Really That Bad These Days?

I pick and choose which stories I read (I don't watch television news unless E! counts, and no, I don't actually count that as real news either), clicking the links that interest me and skipping the headlines that make me uneasy. As naive as it sounds, my mantra is that if the headline scares me then I'm better off not knowing the story in its entirety, and that by not knowing what happened, bad things that happen to other people will not happen to me.

Three of the biggest stories in the United States right now revolve around crimes committed against children.  I have read the initial press on each of these stories, and regretted doing so immediately, therefor I chose not to read the millions of updated published seemingly by the hour. Reading the details of these crimes gave me nightmares. 

(I would caution you against reading them as they really are horrifying.):
These kids were hurt by teachers, parents, and neighbors and for what reason? Because the perpetrators viewed their lives as disposable, something that you discard after it's served its purpose. Perpetrators who at one point were trusted, even admired by the little ones that threw them away. It simultaneously chills me to the bone and makes my blood boil.

Also, it puts me in an uneasy position, choosing between warning my babies about situations that put them in harm's way or keeping them innocent and unafraid of things that they're too young to understand.

A part of me thinks that the best plan of action is to uproot them from life as they know it and start over in the middle of nowhere, like pioneer life, or something similar. Homeschooling them on topics that I feel they should know about and leaving the rest out. Feeding them food that have touched no hands other than our own, grown from the soil at our feet. We would have no television, no internet, no radio. Our clothing would be hand-stitched, and our closest friends not related by blood would be the squirrels in the yard. Even as adults, they would not be permitted to leave the homestead.

The other part of me realizes that a move like that would be selfish because it's pretty much like starting our own little cult... (I'd like to add in here that I'm not trying to equate homeschooling, gardening, sewing, family time, disregard for technology, etc to being in a cult in any way. Only the parts about selective teaching based on personal interest/beliefs and never allowing them to leave the family.)

Maybe it's me coming to terms with the fact that as my children grow up, I can't always save them. They will meet people and have conversations or experiences that I may never know about. They will be hurt, afraid, embarrassed, vulnerable in many ways and I won't be there to protect them. I don't even want to think about those instances. It's more comfortable for me to believe that my kids will always do as I say, with those that I know and trust, and will never hurt for any reason.

I will say this though, Hell hath no fury like the mama whose baby has been intentionally harmed. We'll leave it at that and consider it a warning to any twisted individuals out there - remember those words.

If someone hurts one of my babies, maybe they'll quote that as the headline when I retaliate.

I'd love to know everyone else's thoughts on this topic:

Should we hold them back for their own safety and our own peace of mind? (Even though you're choosey about who your child spends time with, please remember that these parents at one point felt comfortable with the interactions too.) 
Do you let them experience life as an independent thinker making their own decisions , then dealing with issues as they arise? (Everything in moderation of course, I absolutely do not mean that you should or would allow your child free reign at all times - you're the parent, set your own boundaries.)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Hot Mess

Clothes scattered across the bedroom floor
Soaking wet towel hanging on the door
Looks like a hurricane just came through ...
- 'Hot Mess' by Tyler Farr

Am I a hot mess? Sometimes.

Today's outfit consisted of semi-wrinkled brown pants, an almost-too-short teal tank top, and a slightly snug avocado hued cardigan with mom approved brown suede loafers. My outfit, inspired by the relaxed preppy perfection of J. Crew, came out more frumpy than fashionable and as usual, I was running late and didn't have time to swap out for something better. 

Maybe my outfit didn't look as polished because I'm not 6'/115lbs? PHOTO BY JCREW
A mess for sure, but a hot mess? Meh... we'll go with a simmering mess. I had sass and wit on my side today and I came home smiling despite the duds.

There are times when I look and feel like the biggest train wreck imaginable, and there are other times when I pull off a perfect shakedown and the near-catastrophe is avoided by some miracle of God. More often than not, I feel like I'm more of a hot 'I'm getting the under-boob sweats' mess than a hot 'I've got it going on today' mess.

It's safe to bet that I'll be a hot mess for the rest of the week because I didn't get caught up on the laundry this weekend. Next week though? This is going down...

 I bought myself new clothes for Valentine's Day - all from the clearance sections. Pretty romantic, eh?

And speaking of romance... Marlee announced that Daddy bought me roses today. They should be delivered sometime before noon on February 14. Mia was pissed that Boo spilled the beans! Daddy just laughed. "Iz ok! Accident happens!"

Hot Mess in the making

Are you a bit of a hot mess yourself? Sing it proud, mamas!

Congratulations Tyler Farr on your big single release! Hot? OK maybe, but I'll deny admitting it til the day I die. A mess? Understatement.


Hoshii Designs Fortune Cookie Change Purses!!! Love!!!
And another congratulations to HHDD sponsor Hoshii Designs for the most recently achieved level of awesomeness: Hoshii Designs pieces will be given away in celebrity swag bags at the MTV Movie Awards this year! 

If I didn't think I'd need a full-on hip replacement afterward, I'd do a damn cartwheel! I'm so excited and honored from head to toe that I've had the opportunity to feature Hoshii on the ole blog!

Night y'all. Stay hot. Stay messy.