When Worlds Collide

March 2nd, 2012

This is the blog post I was writing when I stopped to think how much of myself I REALLY should reveal.  Well, after taking a year or so off from blogging… I’m baaaaaaAAAAAAck!!!! (You “lucky” readers, you!) ;)

May 2010

I was left momentarily speechless a few weeks ago – I know, right?! Me?! Without anything to say?! Shocker! Not to worry. It only lasted a minute or so. (Whew!) ;)

I was at an event to celebrate the amazing goal of one of my Twitter friends. This young woman brilliantly used social media to raise money for her fundraising campaign -$10,000!

I was there early to try to help out in any way I could. (Well, also because I’m under the false impression that brilliance can be achieved by osmosis and I wanted to soak up as much of Erica’s aura as I could.) ;)

Anyway, I’m having a good time talking to Erica’s equally amazing parents and I hear someone call my name in a somewhat surprised manner. It was my best friend from college & her husband attending a wedding at the same place. This is my friend who doesn’t even have a Facebook account. (Yes, she’s one of “those people” who wonder why others want to read about what we’re eating.)

When she asked, “What are you doing here?” I have to admit, I thought about fudging the truth. (Ok, let’s face it. The first thing that REALLY went through my mind was: “Well, if you were on Facebook or Twitter with me you’d already know why I was here. Duh!)

It’s not that I’m ashamed of my Twitter friends or embarrassed by the fact that yes – I am indeed – a Twitter-holic. :/ (Yes, yes, I admit it already! Stop your incredulosity. Sheesh!)

However, I was unsure what her reaction would be if I replied, “I’m just here with all my friends I met on the Internet.” Put that way, it does sound somewhat strange, huh?

I understand people are still wary of privacy issues on the Internet (…and thank you very much Facebook for putting us back 10 years with THAT issue.) :/

However, I have only had the most positive experience with Twitter. I have found it to be the best networking and marketing tool of our – well, ok, the “new” – generation. (Age is relevant, though, right?) ;)

So, somewhat uncomfortable moment – but I recover my composure (and most importantly my voice!) and explain what Erica achieved through the power of social media. I think my friends were impressed — somewhat doubtful, but nonetheless impressed.

Almost two years after that event I am happy to report that my college friend is finally on Facebook.  (I’ll just have to hope she doesn’t find my blog.) ;)


Afflicted by an “Epidemic”

April 25th, 2010

Writing about prom in my previous post made me think about an article I wrote for the local paper a couple of years ago.  What the heck! I’m going to post it here, too.  You lucky people!  You get a twofer today! ;)

M.O.A.B. “Epidemic”

There is an epidemic going on. Celebrities are not immune to it. Victoria and David Beckham are victims of this epidemic. Cate Blanchett is also afflicted. The epidemic hit our family in October 2006.

Since moving back to Minnesota I have met 10 moms in our area who have been affected by this terrible epidemic. Clearly something has to be done!

“What is this “epidemic’?” you ask.

It is the unbelievable absence of female offspring in three or more children – yes, families of ALL BOYS! With the chance of conceiving either a boy or girl supposedly at 50 per cent, don’t you think this is rather odd?

After meeting the fourth mother of my son’s preschool class to have only three sons, I took it upon myself to form a support group for these poor mothers. I call it… the %#@ Mother of All Boys group, or M.O.A.B. (You would know what all those punctuation marks really meant if you had three or more “testosterone terrors” running rampant in your house without a Barbie or Disney Princess in sight to keep them in line.)

Our M.O.A.B. support group now has 13 members. We have met a few times, discussing issues that would normally have us crying at home – e.g., how many loads of muddy laundry we’ve done now that the snow has melted and created all those irresistible puddles, which ADHD medication is most effective, and – short of making them sit down – the best way to make sure you son’s aim is accurate.

I even designed a logo and t-shirt. Here’s an explanation of it:

• Messy font to represent our messy boys.

• A set of wings tilted over the “M” to represent us mothers as imperfect angels who may lose their patience once in a while.

• Printed on a loud, bright green to represent our loud boys.

• Finally, hearts in between all the chaotic letters to show that even with everything, we still love our boys!

So, please, take pity on us mothers who have been “debilitated” by this affliction. We, who will never experience the joy of being the (sob!) mother of the bride.

In a few years when one of our (gasp!) 40 sons asks your daughter to the prom, please take us with you! We would LOVE to experience shopping for a dress, choosing accessories, and getting hair and makeup done – all the frivolities of having a daughter – if only to escape the M.O.A.B. “epidemic” for a day.


9 MORE Years! :/

April 25th, 2010

I was in church today…  (Yes, let the jokes begin.  I actually made it to church… with ALL 3 boys… by MYSELF, thank you very much!) :P

Anyway, as I was saying… 

I was in church and I saw 2 new families with 3 sons.  No girls, just 3 little boys.  All three of us moms were busy making sure all our boys stayed as still and quiet as they could for one hour.  (Unfortunately, I think I caused the most noise as the people around me giggled loudly when they overheard me tell my middle son, “Stop holding yourself unless you have to pee!  That’s not proper behavior!”  Oops, my bad!)

The boys were actually pretty good, and it was a long, slow shuffle out the door as usual.  However, I happened to be behind two teenage boys discussing how prom went last night.  Oh my.  Is this how it’s going to be when John Ryan goes to Senior Prom in 9 short years?  I know I complain, but it’s only been 9 years since this:

Well, needless to say, I’m dreading him going to prom already.  I’ll make sure his dad gives him “the talk.”  I will personally drive him to the drugstore to pick up “supplies” after we pick up his tux.  Lord knows I don’t want his date waddling around like me in the picture 9 months after prom! ;)


Free at Last!

March 13th, 2010

9 years… 9 LONG years of dirty, stinking diapers. Well, I think the time has finally arrived and I will be free of them… FOREVER!

It’s kind of bittersweet. It means the end of my babies. Those powdery smelling beings with their gummy smiles – they could look sweetly at you one moment then suddenly give a little grunt and gurgle something out the other end. Ahhh… those were the days. Remember them? ;)

Fast forward 3 years and the slightly pungent stuff in their diaper turns into this disgusting, toxic matter with an odor strong enough to clear the room – except yourself. For some reason as the mom we always get stuck with Diaper Doo-Doo Duty. :/

It is no surprise that – as moms – we want to teach the kid how to evacuate their bowels into the toilet as soon as humanly possible. For myself… as a female raising 3 babies of the opposite gender? Potty training was easier said than done. It’s not like I made an intellectual study of how my husband… well, pooped. Puh-leeze! I usually ran the other way. So, even after having 2 older sons and a grown man in my house, I was not very prepared to potty train my 3rd son.

My mother-in-law potty trained our oldest while visiting us in Georgia after the birth of our 2nd son. I took the job she assigned to me during that time seriously – sleeping and nursing. ;)

When our 2nd son was almost 3-years-old, he pretty much trained himself. I was pregnant with our 3rd baby. One day he looked at the stack of newborn micro-mini diapers and decided he was not going to be a baby anymore. The very next day he put on underwear and was trained! A miracle!

My 3rd son turned 3-years-old in October. I thought he was going to be the easiest to train since he had 2 older brothers and his dad to follow. Hardly! I tried the Cheerios trick, bribing with Skittles, and sitting him on the toilet for hours until he went. The stubborn little guy would hold it until the phone rang or I lost patience and left. Then he would put on a Pull-Up and go! (Did I mention he’s extremely smart?) :/

Finally, we went to the store to pick out new underwear. He refused to put on any of the “Thomas the Tank Engine,” “Diego,” or “Spiderman” undies that were just fine for his older brothers. (Sigh.)

He is obsessed with Transformers. My instructions with his new unders? “Do not make Bumblebee any yellower.” He did. Or, “Optimus Prime will not be happy if you poop or pee on him.” Well, poor Prime got pooped on.

After 4 frustrating months of trying to potty train him, I gave up. Apparently… that’s just what he needed – to be in charge of himself. It’s been one week with no accidents!! Free at last, free at last – thank God no more diapers, I’m free at last!! ;)


Happy Valentine’s Day!

February 15th, 2010

Why hello there! Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted. I was battling a nasty cold, and well… Okay, no excuses! Suffice it to say, I’m baaaAAAAaaack! ;) This post actually has a serious note to it. Turn away now if you can’t handle me being serious. J

Happy Valentine’s Day to those of you who celebrate this holiday. For a long time, while we were dating, the guy who would become my husband avoided acknowledging February 14. As romantic as he usually was, he considered Valentine’s Day a retail scam rather than a day to celebrate love. It took a few years, but now I actually agree with him. As he once told me, “I don’t love you more on Valentine’s Day. I try to show you every day how much I love you.” (Seriously, isn’t he the BEST?!) Anyway, he spoils me every day so we choose not to get each other gifts for Valentine’s Day.  (However, dinner out without the kids is a MUST!) ;)

As a family, we have been very blessed. Therefore, this year I decided to celebrate Valentine’s Day by trying to teach my children how to show love for others less fortunate. After one particularly whiny night of listening to my children tell me what they “want, want, wanted” I made them watch the news with me. It was a few days after the earthquake in Haiti and I pointed out all the children who did not have food, clean water, a roof over their heads or parents/relatives to take care of them. Cruel measures – I know, but sometimes even kids need a reality check.

My older sons and I volunteered and helped package meals – soy product, dried vegetables, chicken flavoring and rice – that will provide nutrition to the children who survived the earthquake in Haiti. As a mom I couldn’t be more proud by how enthusiastic they were in helping. I know they have good hearts.

When my oldest son was 5 and in pre-school his teacher pulled me aside after school one day. This is the child that had recently been diagnosed with ADHD and I would get daily notices of how many times he had been reprimanded. Therefore, I was dreading what she had to say. She actually had tears in her eyes, so I thought it was really bad.

What the teacher told me was this, “I just wanted to tell you something that John did today that was extraordinary. I wished I would’ve had a video camera. One of our teachers has a 13-year-old daughter who is blind. Their school didn’t have class today so she was helping her mother out. At recess John saw her sitting aside and asked if she wanted to go down the slide. She explained that she was blind and had never gone down a slide. He kept telling her that he’d help her and convinced her to go down the slide. I watched and he was very encouraging, held her hand and cheered her all the way up the steps and down the slide. I can’t tell you how much fun she had with him!” Anyway, I try to remember that story when he drives me insane all the other times. J

My middle son is the jokester of the family. He also has a heart of gold. This is the story I always remember when he is driving me insane… I had just had our youngest baby, and Eric — our middle son – was not quite 3-years-old. I was thinking aloud and jokingly asked Eric if we should have another baby. I was shocked when he burst into tears and was inconsolable. I finally got him to tell me what was wrong. In between hiccups he said, “No, I like our baby! I don’t want to get a different one!” Anyway, it was awfully cute at the time.

I know my boys are hyper and wild and destructive. However, because of some of the things I see in them – even though they are few and far between – I am almost certain that they will grow up to be good men. It is my hope that I am doing my best to help them become those good men. J

My boys with one of the full boxes we packaged.

What’s in a Name?

January 28th, 2010

So… you may have heard. Apple unveiled its newest creation… the um, iPad. Go ahead, say the first thing that comes to mind. Never mind, I’ll do it for you…

Me: “Hmm, not sure about the name. Might encourage women to only use it once a month and only on those heavy days.”

Other tweets I saw…

@JasonYoraway: “The… ‘iPad’??

@Vruno: “I want the Apple iPad Extra Absorbent with Wings…”

The funny thing, according to my friend Susan, MadTV did a spoof about it a while ago and still named it the iPad. Watch this video that @jabewley sent me: http://bit.ly/gU8Q6

(Warning: You may need an iPends afterwards because it’ll make you laugh so hard!) ;)

Still, as @MitchellHislop said, I get why Apple went with the iPad. After all it has the iPod and the iPhone. Why not another i“P” name. Oh, ha!! I… pee! (Okay, someone stop me, I’m regressing back to elementary school!!)

I am not an Apple hater. I think the company is brilliant. I love Apple. One of my BFFs is my iPod, Todd. (For more on Todd, see previous post about my BFFs and a party in my purse.)

I have no doubt that jokes about its name will eventually die down and will be replaced by awe with all its functions. I am as excited as the next consumer about getting one. I just hope its discrete and doesn’t come in an obnoxious girlie package. ;)



January 21st, 2010

I’ve reached an age where I’m finally okay with my looks. I no longer have to deal with childish chubbiness or adolescent acne, and – for the most part – the leftover pregnancy blubber is gone. (Spanx can do wonders!) ;) I doubt it’s going to get any better than this! In fact, I’m thinking things might start heading South soon – if you know what I mean. ;)

I have a friend who takes pictures for a hobby – Kristin. In fact Kristin took my favorite picture of me. It has been my Twitter profile since I started tweeting last year. A few months ago I asked Kristin if she’d take new headshot photos of me and maybe some “sexy, suggestive” pictures as a birthday or Valentine’s gift to my husband. I tossed around the idea of having tasteful nude photos done – you know, as documentation that once upon a time I didn’t sag. However, just imagining my three boys someday finding those pictures made me shudder.  Even if I were already dead and didn’t care any more, I am positive that seeing their mom naked would undoubtedly scar and/or scare my boys off women for life!

So, headshot session for a long-overdue Twitter profile photo and blog pictures are done. We get to the “sexy” shots and Kristin suggests I take my shirt off and she’ll just take shots from the back. Brilliant idea… I think!

We were in a room with a large picture window because Kristin likes to use natural lighting. I have my shirt off and am facing the window while Kristin shoots away. I’m carelessly posing this way and that, trying to look “sultry” without cracking up – because seriously, being in your underwear with one of your friends snapping pictures of you is flippin’ hilarious! (Think about it… unless you’re in elementary shool it’s either funny or it’s sick!)  I’m totally not worried about the neighbors because I have been told that you can’t see in through our windows. Well, believing that was my first mistake. Not taking into account who told me that line of boloney was my second. Surprise, surprise – it was the hubby that fed me that load of bull… -oney!

Later that afternoon the kids came home from school.  I was outside salting the front steps and blissfully escaping their noise when I casually glanced up… Eeeeeek! Contrary to what I’ve been told, one can CLEARLY see inside that window!

Our annual neighborhood meeting is next weekend. Yes, once again… Eeeeeek! (If I’m not too mortified, I’ll fill you all in on any tell-tale giggles or funny glances shot my way.)  :/


My BFFs — It’s a Party in My Purse!

January 15th, 2010

I’m reading Kathy Buckworth’s book “The BlackBerry Diaries” and she’s cracking me up!  Frankly, I’m surprised I didn’t get multiple copies of it from my friends and family for Christmas. It is so me! This woman gets how to deal with motherhood. ;) We both even name our BlackBerries! Hers is “Seamus” and mine is “Larry.”

However, she thinks of her BlackBerry as another one of her children. I have a deeper, much more intimate relationship with Larry. He’s pretty much attached permanently to me – either in my hand, back pocket or purse. Every night he sleeps right beside me.

My husband is reluctantly okay with my open-relationship boyfriend.  He once jokingly said that I would pick Larry over him if forced to choose in a dire situation. After thinking it over for a few moments I looked over to him and said, “No, of course I’d pick you!” (Not that I admitted it to him, but after all, there’s only so much a handheld electronic device can do.) ;)

For Christmas I received an iPod Touch that I named “Todd.” Larry and Todd have become my best friends forever, and we’re pretty much inseperable. At the touch of my fingertips, we can instantly reach all of our friends on Facebook and Twitter and see what’s going on. Hey, it’s a continous “Party in my Purse” with our 500+ friends! Gottta LOVE technology!!


Confessions of a…

January 14th, 2010

Yesterday morning my babysitter jokingly called her mother a term that I kind of found offensive. Apparently, her mom is always on Facebook and Twitter. Well, c’mon! Who ISN’T these days?

Okay, that’s a joke. My close friends and family tease me about never being off my BlackBerry. And, since Christmas, I now have an iPod Touch so now I’m ambi-gadget-dextrous. Oh, wait! I also have a cute, little netbook so I’m… um, what do you call a 3-appendage-using person? ;)

Well, yesterday afternoon I was simultaneously:
- watching eldest son in karate class
- refereeing 2 youngest sons while they fought
- talking with 2 of my karate mom friends, AND
- DM-ing a reply to a Twitter friend.
(Twitter friend, you know who you are!) ;)

So, what does that make me? Yes, I think I might just fit that very unattractive term my babysitter uses for her mom. I am…

a Social Media Whore!


Happy New Year!

January 4th, 2010

Kudos to those of you who make and keep resolutions! I do not. I never keep mine.  :) As an alternative, I try to improve myself little by little with easy timelines.  It works for me.

So, this week I resolve to get some pictures up on this site.  We’ll see if I can keep that one. ;)

Hope you’re having a great 2k10 so far!!