Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Weekend Update

This is an edge of your seat thriller about my all too exciting weekend except minus the thrilling, exciting parts. Although you may be on the edge of your seats....llllready to leave because it's THAT exciting.

Here are the highlights:

*The boys have a newfound love of Under Armour shirts. They'd like to wear them all day every day if I'd let them, which I won't. And they prefer to just wear them plain, not under anything. Apparently, when you don't have worries of love handles and spare tires something that basically fits like a 2nd skin doesn't frighten you. I think that's why they like them actually, they can see their muscles better. ;) Anyway, Blade got a new one on Friday and was trying it on to make sure it fit and Dakota looked at him and said, "Blade! That shirt shows your MOOBS!" You know moobs, as in man boobs? Seriously. Where she learned of such a thing is a mystery to me, but it's still making me laugh today. P.S. Blade really doesn't have moobs so she's clearly misinformed as to the meaning of the word.   This wasn't covered in my parental handbook so I'm going to let it go.

*Blade had a football game on Saturday morning against our town's long time rival team, a neighboring small town whom we shall call Smearlham. Smearlham has a bit of a reputation for being a little, how shall we say, ahem...overzealous and dare I say cocky, when it comes to sports. (That's putting it nicely, if I weren't putting it nicely I'd say arrogant and poor losers but I'm not one to say such things..sooo) Ironic, since typically they are a lot more talk than action. Anyway, his game was in Smearlham. It was a cool 52 degrees, drizzling off and on, and getting darker by the second. With 8 minutes left in the game and a sizeable lead by the Bulldogs (that's us) lightning was spotted. At first they were just going to delay the game by 20 minutes and then reevaluate but it was getting darker and raining harder by the second so they decided to call the game. Typically, that would be it, Bulldogs would get the win and everyone would go their merry way with an extra 8 minutes on their hands. But Smearlham coaches insisted that we finish the game the following afternoon. Because between you and me, their team had the ball when the game was called and I'm pretty sure they were going to make a comeback. So the next day all the boys got all suited up again and showed back up to play for 8 MINUTES. Guess what? In the 15 minutes it took them to play the 8 minutes, that we spent 15 minutes driving to get there and another 15 warming up, and another 10 getting suited up for..the BULLDOGS STILL WON. And I had to try really hard to remain an upstanding example of good sportsmanship because I SOOOOO had a few things I wanted to share with the Smearlham coaches and parents. But I didn't but all I have to say is GO BULLDOGS!

*This weekend was also the MIlitary Drag Queen Convention also known as the Recruiting Banquet. Here are a few points of interest from that:

*I still don't really like recruiters, that's a lot of hot air in one place.

*I also really don't like a very high ranking officer who may or may not have direct authority upon GI Joe's job. He came by our table to chat and actually said, "I'm kind of a big deal." Ok, that's funny if you're NOT wearing a uniform that already lets people know that AND also if you're not using that to intimidate people. In a rare show of restraint I bit my tongue as I SOOO wanted to tell him, "Oh you think you're kind of a big deal? Well, I actually am. I'm Prairie Princess, You've probably read my blog. Speaking of which, you will actually be a big deal when I blog about you next week." Also, he is like 5 feet tall so it was hard for me to take him seriously since I kept seeing Jiminy Cricket in my head. Restraint is so overrated but on the bright side, GI Joe is still employed...until Jiminy reads this blog.

*I do like the wife of one of GI Joe's fellow recruiters (he's not bad either). She is hilarious, has a Boston accent AND helped me steal 6 wineglasses with the Guard insignia on them, you know because of all the wine we drink here at the Koons Zoo?. I think the 2 of us together makes our husbands really nervous.  And now I have wine goblets for the fancy dinner parties we host..not. 

*I also really like GI Joe's boss and his wife. His boss gets a kick out of my love of llamas and farm girl stuff. After regaling our table with the story of our gay llamas and of how I am teaching my pet calf, Holy, to sit and shake he told GI Joe, "Wow, you really got a keeper didn't ya?" Isn't that sweet? No, he wasn't being sarcastic AT ALL, why do you ask?

*As I've mentioned before, I'm usually one of the few wearing a dress any other color than black or navy. Typically, I'm the ONLY one wearing hot pink, zebra print, or lime green, which I'm sure is very hard to believe but it's true. Now I'm not saying I'm a trendsetter or anything but all I'm sayin' is that this year there were more dresses of color than in past years. There were some purples, some reds, even a magenta, still no hot pink or zebra but baby steps.

*And then there was the traditional photo shoot which typically results in a rather heated discussion between GI Joe and I that goes a little something like this:

Me: "Let's take some pictures!"

GIJ: "One picture, I hate pictures."

Me: "No we have to take several to make sure we get a good one."

GIJ: "Hurry up, we're gonna be late and I hate pictures."

14 shots later....

Me: "Just one more, I don't like any of those that we just took."

GIJ (quickly losing patience): "No, we're done, let's go."

Me (annoyed): "We have plenty of time, just one more. We only get dressed up and look nice once a year, it's not too much to ask that we get ONE frameable photo.

GIJ: "I hate pictures and we need to go."

Me: "Well I hate this stupid boring banquet but I still go to it with you so the least you could do is take some stupid pictures." (I thought about stomping my feet right here but I'm way too mature for such shenanigans.)

GIJ: "I told you you didn't have to go this year."

Me: (offended, put off, hurt) "Why wouldn't I want to come? I get to wear a pretty dress. You don't want me to go?!?"

GIJ: EXASPERATED SIGH.."Let's hurry up and take the stupid picture so we can go."

Me: "Thank you." (secret smirk).

Aren't you glad you're not married to me?

So here are a few pics from that photo shoot, oh and also the one I subjected him to AFTER the banquet because I wasn't satisified with the first photo shoot. I thought we looked stuffy and prom-ish.

I think his enthusiasm is palpable, no?

Until next year.......

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Little Bit of Life

Sorry I haven’t been on quite the same blogging roll that I was last week. Last week I was medicating with brandy for a nasty cold I had, so most of those were written under the influence. This week I gave it up cold turkey (not Wild Turkey), because my cold is considerably better. Turns out I’m a much better blogger when I’m drunk. JUST KIDDING BAPTIST FRIENDS AND GRANDPA! I promise it was just an occasional shot to clear the crud out of my throat and my nose (TMI?) and to help me sleep, basically a much more effective form of NyQuil. Never mind that my cold lasted 6 months. Ha! Ha!

So anyway, let’s review what else I’ve been up to this week because it’s just such an interesting life I lead. .

*A slight medical situation involving an 8 year old boy and a styrofoam bead from a beanbag chair. Why Blade thought it would be a good idea to stick one of those little beads in his ear, like WAY DOWN IN HIS EAR, I’ll never know. Also, why I didn’t think to call the 24 hour nurse line BEFORE GI Joe and I attempted flushing it out, extracting it with tweezers, and various other tricks. Because guess what? When I finally called the nurse after we were unsuccessful the first thing she said was, “DON’T TRY TO GET IT OUT ON YOUR OWN, YOU’LL JUST GET IT IN THERE DEEPER.” Ummm oops. She told me to have him turn his head and wiggle his ear to see if it would fall out. Obviously, since we are great parents and probably lodged the bead further into his ear than it originally was, this did not work. At which point she said, take him to the doctor first thing in the morning OR immediately if he starts having drainage or severe pain. Luckily, we were able to wait til morning. The doctor had a bit of a time getting it out as well but finally did and then gave Blade the whole “never put anything smaller than your elbow in your ear” talk. Once it was out, I said to Blade, “Well, at least you didn’t get it stuck in your nose, a lot of kids do that.” To which he responded incredulously, “WHY WOULD I STICK SOMETHING UP MY NOSE?!?” Oh yeah, good point because YOUR EAR IS SOOOOOO MUCH BETTER. Seriously.

Look, it's the perfect size to fit in an 8 year old's ear canal!!!

*Also in life altering news, I decided it would be super fun and interesting to keep track of how many loads of laundry we do in our house per week. I was totally wrong about the super fun and interesting part, more like super depressing and overwhelming. In case you’re wondering, for an active, somewhat dirty, sweaty, family of 5 on a wannabe farm, we’re on 17 loads so far this week. Awesome huh? And here’s the kicker, it’s not like we had neglected laundry for a month, or even a week. Noooooo, I do massive amounts every weekend and then do at least 1 or 2 loads a night during the week. This is just a normal week. So to combat this never ending problem, I think I’m going to instill a clothes ban until every hamper is empty, every dirty piece of clothing clean. So you might want to call before stopping by. Just sayin’. :)

*Besides counting loads of laundry, I've been very busy fielding calls for TV appearances, magazine covers, etc since Ryder's debut on the homecoming float.  He did great, waving and throwing out candy to his adoring fans fellow students. 

Sadly, this is the best picture I got of him on the float.  Apparently, he didn't appreciate me running alongside the float to take his picture so refused to look at me. 

Homecoming King 2021?!?  (I think it's 2021 but you know how I am with Math.)

*This weekend is the annual recruiting banquet where I get to wear a pretty dress and try not to embarrass GI Joe by asking the General too many questions and he gets to try and avoid drag queens in the elevator. Go here and here  to refresh your memory. In a shocking development, my dress is NOT zebra print, purple, hot pink, or lime green but rather a subdued shimmery cobalt blue. I don’t even know who I am anymore and I’m quite certain no one else at the banquet will either. Stay tuned for a full recap of that next week. 

Happy Friday!

Monday, September 20, 2010

On a Feathered Horse She Rides

Sometimes when you're a kid in the country you have to find ways to entertain yourself. 

You can jump on haybales....

Maybe do a little fishing....

Play with your bovine brother....
Pet a chicken....

Ride an emu.....

Wait what?

Yeah, that's right, ride an emu.  Apparently, Dakota had read somewhere about the ostrich racing and figured emus were a close enough relative of an ostrich that she could hop on and go for a ride.  So that's what she did.  From her account of the story, the male emu, Elvis, had no problem with her hopping on his back and took her for a nice stroll around the barnyard.  However, it was when she got on Priscilla, the girl emu, that things migrated south.  Somehow I was in the house blissfully unaware that my only daughter was riding emus, bareback none the less.  Not really sure if anyone else has ever attempted to ride an emu, much less create a saddle for emu-riding.  Anyway, it wasn't until Dakota came running in the house crying and clutching her hand, that I was aware of history being made in our barnyard, the first emu rodeo.  Here's a reenactment of the conversation between Dakota and I:
Dakota:  "MOOOOOOOMMY, I BROKE MY LITTLE FINGER!!"  slightly hysterical
Me:  "Let me see.  What happened?"
Dakota:  "I was riding an emu and...
Me:  "Wait, you were RIDING an emu?!?"
Dakota: "Yes.  So I rode Elvis and then I got on Priscilla, except she wasn't as good as Elvis, and instead of walking nicely she took off running and going crazy and she..she.. (crocodile tears) she bucked me off. (waaaaaa!!!!)"
Me:  "So you actually RODE on Elvis?  How fun was that?!?  What made you think about riding an emu?"
Dakota:  "Yes it was fun until Priscilla.  Haven't you ever heard of ostrich racing?  It's just like that, just with emus.  But Priscilla, BROKE my finger!  She bucked me off and I landed on it!"
Me:  "Oh right, your finger, let me see.  Ouch, does look swollen but it's probably just jammed."
Dakota:  "No, it's not jammed.  I've had a broken finger before, remember tae kwon do?  I know what broken feels like."
Me:  "Yeah ok Doogie Howser, but I really don't think it's broken, let's just put some ice on it."

And then she spent the next 3 hours of her life telling us that her finger was broken and being slightly melodramatic saying things like, "I'm not eating supper, when you have a broken finger you just don't feel like eating...(heavy sigh)" or "I can't drink because how will I hold the cup and I'm just so clumsy with my left hand..guess I'll just go thirsty..(heavy sigh)."  It got to a point where we finally had to implement the 30 minute finger ban, meaning she wasn't allowed to mention her finger, it's brokenness, or how awful her parents are for not immediately rushing her to the ER for her alleged broken finger.  That of course, did not stop her from asking every 2 minutes if it had been 30 minutes yet.  Finally, 3 1/2 hours later we told her the "30 Minute" ban was lifted.  ;) 

GI Joe and I were convinced it was just jammed and was not broken so figured we'd just see how it was in a day or so.  The next day, a Sunday, she showed everyone at church her "broken finger" and asked them to please put her on the prayer chain and also asked them to refer her to DHS to file a grievance against her parents.  By Sunday night, we still didn't think it was broken but it definitely was swollen and bruising so we thought we should protect it before she went to school on Monday.  If nothing else, to avoid having the nurse call us 17 times on Monday to tell us that Dakota was in her office again complaining of a broken finger. 

So we splinted it.......

With a popsicle stick! 
She wasn't all that impressed with our ingenuity but was very concerned that her finger be kept straight so as to avoid living the rest of her life with a deformed and crooked pinky, thanks to her horrible parents who didn't take her to the doctor. 

She went to school on Monday and told all of her friends that she broke her finger riding an emu.  She came home more than a little irritated because a) most of them didn't even know what an emu was!  b) even after she explained what they were and that we have them as pets they didnt' believe she actually rode one and c) they thought she was faking the whole finger thing since she was wearing a popsicle stick splint that smelled a little like a fudgesicle.  So now she's THAT girl, thanks to us. 

I'm happy to report that it's now been 9 days and she's no longer wearing the popsicle stick split and the swelling and bruising in her finger has gone down considerably.  Therefore proving us right, that it wasn't broken.  Of course, she rebutts with, "It's still broken, right here (pointing to her supposed hairline fracture in her lower knuckle), it's just starting to heal so I can use it again."  And I have no doubt that for the rest of her life she'll be all, "Remember the time I BROKE my finger riding an emu?"  And we're just gonna have to smile and nod because heaven forbid we correct her and say it was just jammed because her response, "Well, how would you know, you DIDN'T EVEN TAKE ME TO A DOCTOR?"

I think we've proven yet again, what awesome parents we are. 

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Lunchbox Love

I'm carrying on a family tradition of lunchbox love.  When my sisters and I were growing up, Mom packed our lunches everyday and always included a little handwritten note to make our day.  Admittedly, at the time sometimes I found it embarrassing but secretly I loved it.  It always said something sappy about how she loved me or how she was proud of me or it might've just been a Bible verse or an inspirational quote.  Of course, no one else at the lunch table ever had such things in their lunchbox so I always read it quickly and shoved it back in my lunchbox before anyone could see it.  Cut me some slack people, elementary school can be a cruel, cruel place. :)

Anyway, ever since our kids started school I've carried on this tradition.  In past years I haven't done very well at doing it daily or even weekly.  Mainly, because GI Joe packs the lunches in the morning and I'm already at work.  But this year I've decided to make it more of a priority and have been writing the notes the night before and making sure they get in the lunchboxes, sometimes I even go a little crazy and pack their whole lunch!  I know, I know, I really outdo myself sometimes. 

This year my notes have mainly focused on telling them to have a good day, learn lots, and have fun, or a silly joke, that sort of stuff.  Can't make it too sappy or I'll lose them halfway thru their PB&J.  But occasionally I'll add a little something like on Blade's addressing it to "My Future Iowa Hawkeye Football Player" or for Dakota "To My Cowgirl" and things like that.  I've also included some Bible verses because Ryder especially, likes to memorize it from reading it at lunch and then amaze me by reciting it when he gets home. 

Blade recently mentioned that he didn't want any more notes. When I probed as to why the sudden change of heart, he told me that a kid at his lunchtable made fun of him and now addressed him as "Future Hawkeye Player".  Personally, I don't see a problem with that but could see that Blade wasn't so much enjoying it.  Being the kind of mom I am (aka awesome), I explained to Blade that Anthony is obviously jealous that he doesn't get any notes in his lunchbox and how about I write him a note for Blade to give him tomorrow?  Blade LOVED that idea and thought it would be hilarious.  I wish I could see Anthony's face tomorrow when he starts in on Blade and Blade is like, "Oh speaking of lunchbox notes, here's one for YOU!"  Can you even imagine?  Priceless. 

Here's Blade's note:

And here's Anthony's:

How 'bout them apples Anthony?  That's what I thought...BOOYAH!
In a war of words with a 3rd grader, I'm like soooo mature. 
But guess what?  I'll win.  Mostly, because I can spell bigger words AND because I can stay up past 9:00pm if I want to.
Mark my words, soon Blade will be fielding requests left and right for lunchbox notes from his Mom.  I may be looking at a pretty sweet part time gig here.  In the meantime, I'll be fielding calls from angry parents and annoyed school officials. 
If only everyone got a little lunchbox love this world would be a much better place.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I'm So "Eggcited" and I Just Can't Hide It

WE HAVE EGGS!  Wow, nice lead in there PP.  Way to keep them in suspense.  I can't help it this is BREAKING news.  Ahahahahaha get it?  Breaking news?  Sometimes I crack myself up.  See, I just did it again?  Just wait there'll be more. 

I thought we had dysfunctional chickens who refused to lay eggs.  Our hens appeared to be in some labor union and were on strike..indefinitely.  I mean really, who has 7 fully capable hens pecking about with no eggs to show for it?  We did that's who.  Do you know how embarrassing it is when people ask you if you have chickens and you answer yes and then they ask you to bring them some fresh eggs and you have to say, "Well, yes we have chickens, hens nonetheless, but they don't, ummm, they don't lay eggs"Gay llamas is one thing but non egg laying chickens, that's another.  I blame myself.  It probably stems from the wrongdoing in my youth involving eggs.  My wrongdoing that landed me in the cop shop and nearly charged with "reckless throwing", that is a 3rd degree misdemeanor which in case you weren't aware, is a step below a FELONY.  It's true and don't you dare laugh because when I did that while the very stern police officer explained the seriousness of our crime of "reckless throwing" he got a little a lot annoyed.  Especially when I explained to him that it wasn't reckless, we knew hit what we were aiming for.  :)

Moving on.....

Alas, MONTHS of waiting, wrongdoing forgiven, criminal record purged...AND WE HAVE EGGS.  I think this puts us yet one more step closer to being a "real farm".  A girl can dream right?  That's eggactly what I thought.  Oh look out there I go again. 

And many of them are thanks to this little hen whom we call Chicken Little. 

We'll address why Annie Oakley's fingers are taped in a future blog post.  Trust me you won't want to miss that one.

Original I know, and truthfully we've already used it for another small chicken who met an untimely demise by a hunting dog while my friend Jessie was here SHOWING HER YOUNG, IMPRESSIONABLE BOYS THE ANIMALS.  Talk about therapy.  Anyway, RIP Chicken Little #1.  Don't take it personal but we've found someone else to fill your nest.  And while she doesn't have your flair, her eggs are even prettier and more frequent than yours were.  Never mind that the eggs are practically bite size they are so tiny.   Perhaps we were petting you and carrying you around the yard too much to allow you to get your work done.  We've learned our lesson and only hold and pet the new Chicken Little on occasion.  Yes, we pick up and pet our chickens, doesn't everyone?    And sometimes we get really wild and crazy and throw them up in the air to watch them try to fly and then skid to a landing.  Don't worry they're like cats, they land on their feet...usually.  Oh I'm sorry, PETA who?

In addition to finally not having to face the irony on a weekly basis of buying eggs in bulk at Costco, I get to feel all homesteady and old fashioned when I tell the kids every afternoon, "Go check for eggs," while wearing my bonnet and apron.   This my friends, is the life for me.  And now should the need arise, I won't have to buy eggs for my third degree reckless throwing adventures.  But I'll probably refrain, my bonnet and I just aren't cut out for a life behind bars. 

Monday, September 13, 2010

Boys of Fall

Since the day we found out Blade was going to be a boy, GI Joe has been waiting for this.  "This" being, his boy gearing up in pads and helmet to play tackle football.  And if I'm being honest, I have been too.  Growing up in a house full of unathletic girls, I couldn't wait to see what it would be like to be on the front line of the action, cheering on MY son.  Not a boyfriend or a crush or a friend from school but my own flesh and blood.  How cool would that be?  Cool, very cool.

GI Joe loves, loves, LOVES football.  He was an All State offensive lineman (whatever that is) in high school and his picture still hangs in the hallway by the gym where the kids now go to school.  The football team of our junior and senior year was the stuff songs are written about and movies are made.  Hello Friday Night Lights.  Brief tangent:  Who watches the TV series Friday Night Lights?  I keep reading about it and hearing rave reviews but have yet to watch it.  I loved the movie, will I like the show?  Talk to me. 
Anyway, our football team went from zeroes to heroes all within the span of 3 years.  It was legendary.  Also legendary is how #54 aka GI Joe looked in those football tights and jersey.....phew!  :) 

So the time has finally come and Blade is playing tackle football.  I should also mention that Blade has lived for this day since he was old enough to throw a ball.

Here are a few things I've already learned just from one month of practices, 1 scrimmage, and 1 real game. 

*Apparently, it is not acceptable to send your son to the first day of football camp wearing a "My Mom Rocks Shirt", even if your mom does in fact, rock.  Weird. 

*It is also not okay to exclaim in a shrill, excited girl voice, "HE LOOKS SO CUTE IN ALL THOSE PADS AND UNIFORM!" while watching your son at football practice, scrimmage, game, anytime his friends are around.

But seriously...look at him

*When your son proudly says to you after a scrimmage, "I KNOCKED THE SNOT OUT OF HIM MOMMY!" when he tackled him, you are to reply with "GREAT JOB!" not "EWWWWW, YUCK...was he ok?!" 
That's him crouched low ready to attack or tackle or knock the snot out of someone.

*When watching your son practice you should probably make sure that the kid you are waving profusely and yelling, "Hi Blade!  Go get 'em buddy!" to, is actually your son and not some other kid who just looks at you like a crazy person.  In my defense, they all look pretty much alike when they have helmets on.  Thank goodness for game day they have numbers on their jerseys. 
This one is actually Blade...I think. 

*Gasping loudly and saying, "OH OUCH...OH NO!  IS HE OK?!?" when your son is involved in a tackle doggy pile will get you "grounded" to the vehicle for an indefinite amount of time.

*Also, saying "Blade! look over here!" so that you can take his picture during a scrimmage will also result in being grounded.

*I feel like one of the NFL moms from the Campbell's Chunky Soup commercials every time he comes home from practice and INHALES whatever I've prepared for supper and tells me how delicious it is, as if he even tastes it. 

*Apparently, trash talking by me the parents is discouraged.  Personally, I think a little "You're going DOWN SUCKAS" invokes friendly competition, toughens them up.  I don't see a problem.  No wonder today's youth are so soft.  P.S.  THEY did go down. We stomped them 18-0.  I mean we beat them nicely and nobody really even kept score.  (Yeah right.)

*At Blade's first game yesterday, my mother in law patiently explained some basics to me.  Having been a football mom of many years means she's a solid resource.  And much nicer about it than say, oh i don't know, someone who shh's me and grounds me to the car when I gasp too loudly, take too many pictures, or ask too many questions.  Yesterday's valuable lesson?  Explaining the whole chain gang that follows the teams up and down the field measuring something to do with yards and downs and such.  I thought they were prisoners doing community service, what with their chains and all. 

Clearly, I still have a lot to learn.

In other football(ish)  news...
Ryder was voted on by his fellow 2nd graders to ride on a float in the Homecoming Parade next Friday.  As a mini king of sorts.  To quote his teacher "He should be honored as he was chosen by his classmates.  He'll be great at it!"  But now the crucial issue, what am I going to wear?!?  This is big time folks.  I mean what if the news station is there and wants to interview the mother of the 2nd grade king?  I think this calls for a new outfit...and shoes...and probably a purse.  Accessories make the outfit.  As for Ryder's attire, he just has to wear his VM Bulldogs Homecoming shirt.  Maybe I'll bedazzle it to make him stand out a little more.  Stay tuned to News Channel 13 this blog for full coverage.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Awhile back GI Joe and I decided to become a foster family for this organization UMGDR. It's a rescue organization for Great Danes.  We heart Great Danes and felt like we were more than equipped to provide a loving, temporary home for a Great Dane in search of a forever home.   You all know by now what a sucker I am for animals so this should not come as a great surprise. 

Let's review the foster Danes we've had to date.
This was our first foster..Ravin.  Ravin was beautiful and perfect (except for looking slightly cross eyed but we all have our flaws) and never. ever. barked. ever.  She was a great one to break us in, well except for the 80 acre pasture run she took me on within her first day here.  Note:  I DON'T run.   Ravin went to a wonderful young couple in Wisconsin where she's living happily ever after.  Everyone that knows me doubted that I would ever be able to give the dogs up after fostering them but Ravin was proof that I could do it.  Not saying it didn't sting and I may or may not have shed a few tears but we did it, we really did it.  It was a great first foster experience. 

Meet Mac, foster #2. 

This dog stole my heart.  I mean look at him.  I really wish he could've told me what he'd been thru because I have a feeling he took it upon himself to protect someone he loved from something very, very, bad.  When Mac was around I felt safe, I had no doubt that he would tear someone to shreds before he let them hurt me.   Not that I worry much about that given that I wrestle goats and own a pink BB gun but still.  I wish I'd had Mac when GI Joe was gone for those 6 weeks last year, I woul'dve slept a whole lot better.  GI Joe and Mac got off to a rocky start as Mac was not so fond of men, probably something to do with what he couldn't talk to me about.  After the first 5 minutes of him lunging all 110 lbs with teeth bared and snarling at GI Joe they got along splendidly and were best buds.   GI Joe calls himself the white Dog Whisperer.  Whatever he did worked, as Mac quickly got over his male agression issues.  We seriously considered adopting Mac because the whole family fell hard for him. But in the end, we sucked it up and let him go with an amazing family from Minnesota who treat him like the king he is.  I'll be honest, this adoption nearly did me in.  I cried..alot.  I still miss him, my Mac Attack. 

Meet Aggie Foster #3
Agnes, whom we quickly renamed Aggie because who names their dog a name of 102 year old woman?  Aggie is a Greyhound/Dane mix and a sweetheart.  She was another one that I just couldn't believe someone had given up because she was such a well behaved, sweet dog.  Remember how deeply I was in love with Mac?  Ummm, that's how GI Joe was with Aggie.  Her adoption was rough on him.  We met her new mom at a park and as we drove away GI Joe kept turning around to see Aggie watching us with a look on her face like, "Wait, I thought YOU loved me why are you leaving me?"  I can't be sure but I thought I saw his eyes a little misty.  Talk about traumatic.  But for the 3rd time we did it, we fostered a Great Dane until we found them the perfect forever home.  Yay us. 

And then there was this guy....
After Aggie, we had decided to take a little break from fostering to give our hearts time to recover.  Fostering is very rewarding but definitely not for the faint of heart.  Ummm, our resolve to take a break lasted until I saw the email plea for a foster home for this guy, a 6 month old puppy.  This guy who was born deaf and then blinded in one eye and nearly killed from being attacked by an American Bulldog.  He's had such a rough start in life.  We are suckers for deaf dogs as we had a Dalmatian years ago, named Sophie who was deaf but also one of the best dogs we've ever had.  Anyway, I put all thoughts of a foster break aside and responded with a "YES, we'll take him!" 
Five minutes after we picked him  up, the kids said to GI Joe, "Daddy, can we adopt him?!?  He needs us." and much to my surprise GI Joe said, "Yes."  And there we have it, our foster FAIL.  Maybe it was because he had a 90 lb deaf dog sitting on his lap at that moment clouding his judgment or maybe it was because sometimes you just know when something belongs with you. 
And seriously, we were powerless to THIS face.  The dog's not Ryder's. 

Not to mention he's the calmest, sweetest, most loving dog I've ever met.  And huge.  He's really huge.  HIs paws are as big as my hands, which for a BIG dog girl like myself is totally awesome.   

His name was Kane when we got him but it just didn't seem to fit him and it's not like he knew what we were calling him anyway.  No disrespect to the deaf obviously.  After we made the decision official to adopt him we began searching for the perfect name for him.  Something strong, something to reflect his resilliance, his strength, his sweet spirit, or maybe something sarcastic like Keller (you know like HELEN KELLER? Tee hee) or something of German heritage as he is of German descent.  And that's how we came up with....


You read that right, Bubba.  We tried all kinds of regal, strong sounding names on him but none of them fit.  In the meantime we were calling him Bubba because he just IS a Bubba.  And really, what redneck, backwoods family tree doesn't have a Bubba in it? 

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Why I Love Being An Aunt

For starters, these 3 reasons:


 Micah & Savannah (dirty faces and all)

Parenthood is great and all but folks, aunthood is where it’s at! I mean, you get to love on them, laugh with them, spoil them, be the cool, fun aunt, and when they are naughty hide your laughter as THEIR PARENTS have to deal with it. I love it! I bugged both of my sisters relentlessly after they got married to make me an aunt. It’s a good thing I didn’t know how much fun it would be or it would’ve been relentless times 10. Thanks for coming thru for me girls.  If this is anything like being a grandparent count me 30 years of course. 

After having spent Labor Day weekend with my precious niece and nephews, I’m more smitten than ever.

Also, please note that at least 2 of the 3 of them (Jonah is still young, he’ll learn) think Uncle GI Joe and I are THE BOMB and who could blame them? We pretty much are. Wish they’d tell their cousins aka our kids that. :)
Making cupcakes.

Licking the beaters, the best part of baking.

Besides being adorable they make me laugh. Here are just a few things they said/did that made me add a little extra in the budget for their Christmas presents.

Micah and I were riding in the back of Uncle GI Joe’s pickup down our gravel road, getting him countrified when I asked him where we were.  He said, “ Iowa .” Then I asked him where he lived. To which he replied, “Dollar General.”

Also, Micah love, love, LOVES GI Joe. No matter where Micah is if he sees Uncle GI Joe his face lights up. I can’t tell you how many times I heard “Uncle GI Joe* I right here!” in that little boy voice and then GI Joe would seek him out, tickle him, pick him up, or whatever favorite uncles do and Micah would giggle and laugh hysterically. (*He doesn't actually call him Uncle GI Joe but Uncle Real Name) Hilary always said when Ryder was little how his voice just melted her and he could get away with anything because of his sweet Mickey Mouse like voice. Now I know exactly what she means because Micah’s voice does the same thing for me. Next time I see him I’m going to record talking to me and play it on my Ipod daily.

Savannah and I are cut from the same cloth. I often get texts from my sister Heidi that say things like “How did I end up having YOUR daughter?” and “Savannah is so much like you it’s scary.” And “My daughter is so stubborn and independent I could scream, wonder where she gets that from?” I have no idea what she was implying with that one.

Savannah is a bit on the strong willed side. And recently I’m told she’s been getting good use out of the word NO, as many 3 year olds do. But she does defiant in the most polite way imaginable.

Example: Heidi was telling her to come here so they could put her shoes on. Savannah was otherwise occupied doing something important like playing so ignored her mother’s request. Heidi repeated herself, to which Savannah looked at her very matter of factly and said, “No, not right now I’m playing.”

See what I mean?!? Delicately defiant. Apparently, Heidi is immune to the cuteness that is her daughter’s sassiness, and took that very stern, you’re gonna get it Mom tone and said, “Savannah, come here right now and put your shoes on or you will get a spanking.” Savannah , reluctantly stood up, sighed heavily, and said, “Oh OK fine, I don’t want to get a spanking.” I had to hide my laughter as I didn’t think my sister would appreciate me bursting out laughing at her strong willed daughter. Word on the street is that I acted much like this as a child. Sadly for the accusers, there is no proof.

Also, Savannah is already a texting age 3. Tuesday afternoon, when the early stages of niece/nephew withdrawal were setting in I got a text from my sister Heidi.  The text was a picture message of Savannah wearing pink and smiling sweetly.  Just the fix I needed so I called Heidi to thank her.  Except she had no idea what I was talking about.  Turns out Savannah was playing with her phone looking at her pretty pictures (again, no idea where she gets that from?) and apparently hit my speed dial # and viola!  . 

I may not be Mother of the Year but I'm definitely going for Aunt of the Year.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Favorite Foto Friday

I enjoy alliteration.  (See title.)

But more that alliteration, I love THIS picture.  My new favorite.

Bo & Luke Duke.....

Just some good ol' boys....

 The new and young Brooks & Dunn album cover......

Country strong.....

This picture makes a mama happy.  I am wallpapering the living room with it.  Overkill?

And the BEST part about this picture?  I didn"t even have to bribe them!  Score!

Have a great weekend!  I will be spending it with my ENTIRE family...seesters, niece and nephews, godmother, bros-in-laws, and the 'rents, along with my immediate family of course.  Guaranteed blog material right there, can't wait. 

Happy Labor Day!