Monthly Archives: April 2012

dick’s, here i come (again)…


My daughters play soccer.  Almost every day of the week, one of them has a practice or a game.  Sometimes, practices overlap and my husband and I “divide and conquer” to get them to the named field at the required time.  Our calendar is full, to say the least.

My older daughter has to be in a specific uniform for each practice (i.e. Monday is white socks, blue shorts, white shirt, etc…).  I do a lot of wash and I make sure she has the uniform she needs each day.

Obviously, she also has a specific uniform for each game.  She has to wear a certain sock color and shorts.  We bring both game jerseys.  Again, I make sure she has all parts to her uniform for each game.  Everything is sitting on the countertop on game day to be checked and re-checked before we leave the house.

Sunday, I set out every piece to her uniform and handed her the blue socks on her way out of the door.  I did my part.

We are 45 minutes from home and are pulling up to the soccer field when my daughter says to me, “Do you have my blue socks?”  I nicely reminded her that I handed them to her on our way out of the door.  I’m thinking, “Are you kidding me???”

The socks were not in the car.

Luckily, we have to arrive 1 hour before game time.  I dropped my husband and daughter off at the field, I Googled “Dick’s Sporting Goods” and drove 20 minutes to purchase navy blue soccer socks.  I ran in, bought the socks and drove 20 minutes back to the field.  With a few minutes to spare, I pulled over next to the soccer field and threw the navy blue socks over the fence to my husband.

Short of physically putting the socks on my daughter’s feet – I have done my motherly duty.

I may be too accommodating…

This is not the first time I have run to Dick’s on game day.


fifty shades of funny…


I just started reading “Fifty Shades Freed,” the final book of the “Fifty Shades of Grey” trilogy.

I stared reading the first book because I really wanted to know what all the hype was about.  This book has been on the news, all over the internet, on Good Morning America, 20/20, and the Today Show.  I wanted to read the books, so that I could discuss it with “everyone.”

What surprised me is that I have totally enjoyed reading the books.  Beyond the sex is a love story with two interesting characters.  It has kept me reading and I want to know what happens at the end.  I will continue to read and hope that the characters end up together.

In my true form, I have been discussing the book, a lot… with anyone who will listen.  I am pleading my case that the books have more to it than just sex (although, there is a lot of sex, don’t get me wrong).

So, last night I am on the phone with my mom and we are discussing the first book in the trilogy,  My husband is sitting by me watching TV (I did not think he was listening to my conversation).  I am telling my mom, in my opinion, the sex parts of the book were written for a woman to read.   The author does not use gross language when she describes any “encounters” and I thought that a man would want to read about the sex in a different way, with different words and different descriptions.

My husband looks up and says “We need pictures.”

I almost fell over laughing.

oops, i forgot…


I forgot to pay the registration fee for my minivan.  We had the car inspected and never sent in the $33 for the tags.  Totally slipped my mind (for the past 4 months). 

While I was picking my husband up at the airport, with three little girls in the car, driving 20 MPH through the airport a nice police officer turned on his blue lights.   The nice police officer reminded me that I forgot to pay my registration fee.  He reminded me with a ticket and a court date.  Yup, this was a great reminder.  Apparently, a warning would not do.

Today, was the court date.  I had to take the morning off of work, find the courthouse downtown (so happy that I don’t know where this is located), find a parking ramp, pay for parking, walk to the courthouse, go through a metal detector and wait in line with my paid registration receipt.

In addition to people with traffic violations… I stood in a parallel line with people that had been arrested and been in jail.  I heard someone being asked if they had “posted bond.”  Lovely.

Once my name was called… I walked up and was asked “Did you pay your registration fee?”  I showed my receipt and said “yes” and made an embarrassed laugh.  I did not get a chuckle or even a smile in return.  I was told  “The case is dismissed.  You are free to go.”

What??  Were they planning on detaining me over $33?

I wanted to remind someone, anyone that I just forgot to pay my registration fee (for the past 4 months).

Point made.  Lesson learned.  I will never, ever forget to send in the $33 registration fee again.


(another) gerbil update…


Recently, I walked into my oldest daughter’s room and saw that the gerbil cage was missing. Gone. The spot that it usually sits in… was empty. The only things that remained were the weights that normally surround the cage. (Note: If you have not read my earlier gerbil post, the weights keep the cage stationary so that the cats can’t knock it over)

The gerbils were just there the night before! Where did they go?

So, my daughter says, “They were making too much noise last night. They are in my closet.” (with the door closed)

What??? How much noise can two little gerbils make?

Well, we moved the cage back into their spot, surrounded by the weights. Normally, she takes a little 1 pound weight and blocks the wheel at night to cut down on the noise from the gerbils running on the wheel. She said the weights were not enough and the gerbils still made too much noise. Hence, the move to the closet.

I made a huge fuss at her stating that the poor little gerbils didn’t want to sleep in the closet and that she needed to leave them right where they were at night... in their spot, surrounded by the weights. I am still in doubt that these two tiny little gerbils can cause so much of a racket that they could keep her awake at night. Really, I didn’t believe her.

The gerbils have remained in their spot, surrounded by the weights. She has not put them in the closet since.

Last night, we assembled a desk for her room. Then, rearranged the room and cleaned it. I was tired. I laid down in her bed and feel asleep

Then, I woke up to an enormous racket. Not a bump in the night or one random noise. It was a genuine racket.

It was the gerbils.

The wheel was blocked by the tiny weight. Their cage is not that large. I have no idea how they could make that much noise. But, they were. My daughter was right. I was wrong.

I have not admitted this to her… but, it took everything in me not to get up and walk that cage back into the closet (and close the door).

pinterest words…


Occasionally, you will find me looking at the “pins” on Pinterest.

At first, I didn’t understand the premise behind the pinning and the boards.  But, now I am really getting into it!

My favorite thing to pin (or repin) are the quotes.  Yeah, I like the recipes and the clothes – but, I normally can’t afford the clothes I pin (or repin) and nobody in my family will eat the fancy recipes I pin (or repin).  But, a girl can dream, right?

So, the quotes are what I like and some of them are really great!  In addition, I have also realized I have some pretty deep, thoughtful and caring friends that pin (or repin) these words.   Yes, my friends also pin (or repin) some silly stuff.  But, so do I… I have a separate board for funny, called “funny”   (yes, very creative – I know).

My husband may not enjoy the pinning (or repinning) of quotes as much as I do.  After I pin (or repin) a great quote – I send him a text of the quote.  I feel like this quote (of the moment) will change his day, enlighten him, and make him a deep-thinker.  I envision him standing there, in awe of what he just read, and he will be thrilled that I shared these words with him.

I may be wrong about this.

I usually get a text response to my quote that says “kool” or “yup, good one.”  But, I still think he is deeply moved by the words that I just shared with him.

I have compiled a list of my favorite Pinterest quotes:

  • Don’t give up what you want most, for what you want now.
  • Be curious, not judgmental – Walt Whitman
  • Our prime purpose in this life is to help others.  And, if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them – Dalai Lama
  • If you judge people you have no time to love them. – Mother Teresa
  • The more you love your decisions, the less you need others to love them.
  • No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.  – Eleanor Roosevelt
  • Spend life with who makes you happy, not who you have to impress.
  • Be the change you want to see in the world.
  • While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about.
  • You don’t have to attend every argument you’re invited to.
  • Your beliefs don’t make you a better person, your behavior does.
  • Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by it’s ability to climb a tree, it will live it’s whole life believing that it’s stupid.  – Albert Einstein
  • Integrity is doing the right thing when nobody is watching.
  • Happiness will never come to those that don’t appreciate what they already have. 
  • If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s,  we’d grab ours back.

And, my all-time favorite…

  • You may think the grass is greener on the other side, but if you take the time to water your own grass it would be just as green.

As you can see… my time on Pinterest pinning (and repinning) has been well spent.  I feel more enlightened just reading the words I have compiled… and I just know my husband does too.

Take time to water your own grass.

Photography of Melanie by Gregory C. Gamradt

sixteen lunches…


Last week, I needed two days off of work because my husband had to go out of town for his job and my kids did not have school.

It’s only April and I’m already out of my vacation days.  I only get 5 vacation days per year.  I have 3 kids.  They all have activities and school holidays.  Occasionally, they get sick and stay home from school.  5 days is not a lot of vacation days.   Notice I never said “took a vacation” with my 5 vacation days.

Anyway, the vacation days are gone.

So, I needed Thursday and Friday off (remember, I took my kids to the museum and the zoo?).  I asked my boss for the days off of work and offered to either use sick days (I still have a couple of those left!) or take it unpaid.  I’m giving, what I think, are great options.  I do realize I am asking for the favor… I am just trying to make it easy with the options.  I also realize I could have just called in sick.  Although, I hate when people just don’t show up for work – unless they are truly sick.  Then, of course, I don’t mind (well, not really).

I like to plan in advance and give my employer as much notice as possible if I am going to miss work (aren’t I a great employee??). 

Apparently, my boss didn’t really like the options I presented to her.  I know her heart was in the right place.  She wanted me to get my full check and still come out of this with my remaining sick days intact (since it is only April!!). 

She told me I could make up the two days off of work… by skipping sixteen lunches. 

Since I planned ahead… I have already skipped 4 lunches.  Number 5 will be today.  Then, 11 more to go…


Photograph taken on April 11, 2011 at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences.

“State of Wonder” by Ann Patchett…


This book was recommended to me by several people who loved it. I agree – this was an interesting book to read. When I was not reading it… I was thinking about it. To me, that makes for a great book. If I can put the book down and completely forget about it-it may take me a while to pick it back up again.

“State of Wonder” takes the reader out of their element and into the Amazon Rainforest to a very remote lab where several doctors are attempting to create a drug for a large pharmaceutical company.

This book has interesting characters, great environmental descriptions and makes the reader think about the choices the characters faced with.

If you’ve read “State of Wonder,” I’d love to hear your comments. If not, this is a great book to add to your “to read” list!

———————————————————– describes the book:

Award-winning “New York Times”-bestselling author Ann Patchett (Bel Canto, The Magician’s Assistant) returns with a provocative novel of morality and miracles, science and sacrifice set in the Amazon rainforest–a gripping adventure story and a profound look at the difficult choices we make in the name of discovery and love.

Side Note: I have also read “Bel Canto” by the same author and it remains one of my favorite books.

Please check out the “reading now…” section of my blog for my current book.