Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Ok, so I was gently reminded that, though I know those two best, I have more than just Hannah & Aubyn for cousins. There are LOTS more, and many have a number of kiddos, boys & girls.

I skewed the statistics to suit my own purpose. It's called "massaging the data." In my non-scientific case, it was more like "beating the data up."

Megan, Josh, Kelsey, Michelle, Jennifer, Chelsea, Michelle, Bethany, Michael, and Jamie: I'm sorry. Though upon closer examination...most of those are girls...and most of their kids are boys (I think).

Catherine and I took our boys on a walk the other day. In true birding style (Tjabe's dad runs bird watching tours), both had binoculars. They checked out lots of cool stuff, including the moon, which held still long enough to see through the lenses. Most birds, however, were too fast for them.

We see the moon!

Elementary, my dear Watson.

Monday, April 28, 2008

swiped from Molly

I can't stop watching this on HER blog, so I thought I'd share it on mine. I get goose bumps and stuff every time - not because the Discovery Channel is so great (but IT IS), but that the world really is just awesome. And, as Molly notes, God made that world!

Friday, April 25, 2008


  • My fearless son's enthusiasm for gymnastics (which he calls gymnaskicks).
  • Holding my friends' two week old baby...they seem so small, until you remember from whence they came.
  • A warm home on a cold, windy day.
  • Getting to decorate my twin nephews' birthday cakes.
  • Ordering up the prints for my Christmas card - if you want one and aren't sure you're on the list, better let me know!
  • Eating popcorn and watching VeggieTales WAY past Blake's bedtime last night, all cuddled up on the couch.
  • Being in on a secret that I can actually keep.
  • Getting to be crafty today because I had the desire (!) and the time (!!).
  • Having a son who loves to help me wipe down all my black furniture to keep it clean.


  • word verification for when you want to post a comment on your friend's blog. It wouldn't be so bad if only YOU COULD READ THE DAMN THING.
  • Decorating your home with the thin, cheap "wrought iron" that screams 40% off at Jo-Ann Fabric. Yes, I am a snob.
  • Decorating your home with seashells and lighthouses. This is Montana, and it is land-locked.
  • Decorating your home with black furniture. This is Montana, and it is dusty (this is also me).
  • Getting phone calls from Verizon - on my land line - asking me to call them back about my wireless account. Quit harassing a poor widow who uses Alltel and turn off the deadbeat's phone! I'll bet THEN they'll call you back.
  • Snow again today.
  • My otherwise fearless son's response to swim lessons.

baseball team

After a generation of lovely girls (me, Reese, Lane, plus cousins Hannah & Aubyn), my immediate and slightly less immediate family is making up for it by having boys, and lots of them.

Me: Blakester, 3
Reese: Mason & Smith, almost 1 (April 30!)
Lane: baby boy unnamed, due in September
Hannah: baby boy unnamed, due in September

I think my dad is in hog heaven, imagining all the hunting trips and the overabundance of testosterone after twenty-four years of drought. I'm harboring a secret hope that everyone else will continue to have boys and, at some future day, I will get to have a girl. I guess it's not a secret anymore, but I think it would be great fun!

Monday, April 21, 2008

over it

It's 10:15, and my son has discovered that he can use potty-training as yet another weapon in his arsenal of stall tactics. As he looks at me with extreme concentration, he grunts and says, "This is getting interesting." I'm dead serious.

He squeezes out a tiny little dookie, gets a treat, and says he has to go again in five to ten minutes. This is ridiculous, not interesting, and I desperately need to reclaim the hours after 8:00 pm as MY TIME. Also, the hours before 7:30 am.

This morning he woke me by coming into my room, grabbing my bright pink bra off the doorknob (I'm very classy, yes, thank you), and saying, "I wearing Momma's boobs!" while holding it up against his chest and dancing back and forth.

Today, after I painstakingly restored his Transformer to its motorcycle shape, he tried to take it apart again, saying, "I going to fix it myself....I trying to...(grunt)...It's not working very good for me. I don't know how to do it."

He is kicking my butt, or, as HE would say, with a huge grin, "I beat you! I beat your bottom!"

No, I've never said that to him. I don't know where he learned it. Really. Did you teach him?

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


For those of you wine snobs like me who don't care for white, I read that the 2005 Bordeaux is drinking very well these days. Well-known estates have bottles selling for upwards of $2000 (!!!), but the year was good across the region, so smaller vintners have excellent bottles at reasonable prices.

I just had two glasses of a $13 Bordeaux from World Market. I also got one ($13) from CVS. After these two glasses of tasty red, I'm going back for more tomorrow, because while $13 is a bit more than I would usually pay for wine, it's a damn bargain compared to two grand.

Also, I will be needing a wine rack.

couldn't have said it better

"I believe kids become better people for having grandparents actively involved in their lives. Grandparents, as living history, help their grandchildren establish their own place in the world, giving them a sense of connection and purpose. Grandparents encourage and teach with a certain remove, free of the hand-wringing and battles of wills that come with parenting." -from Wondertime

Blake is so lucky to have all his grandparents, all devoted to him. Though he sees my folks more (due to proximity), he knows and loves Grammie Gee (Daddy Blake's mom) and Grampa Steve (Daddy Blake's dad) very, very much. He knows Grampa gives him John Deere tractors and will take him on tractor/combine/horse rides when we visit Plentywood. He knows Grammie Gee is a sucker for him talking up a blue streak and will be charmed into plugging quarters into the rides at the mall. Grammie (my mom) is great at stretching my boundaries in ways that can be exciting or maddening, but he loves to visit her and play in the sandbox and go to the park. Papaw (my dad) has a riding lawnmower and lots of tools and lets Blake use a real hammer when in the shop.

I'm so glad that he has the relationships he does with his grandparents - having only one Grammie living myself, I'm a little jealous.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008



He's gotten much better, I'll have you know.

Of course it's a challenge (perspective: this urn is about one foot deep).

Easter egg dying - Lane helped, and we stripped him down, since I didn't want to do THAT laundry. He had great fun and refused to eat a single one. I had egg salad sandwiches A LOT.

"Hey, Momma, I ree ree so love you."

"Well, I guess you're okay too."

Happy Easter smiles - and he has my eyes.

Being very gentle with baby Kale, who was largely unimpressed with us. We'll try harder next time little buddy.

Those of you who have stayed here know that I keep my house on the cool side. We wake up to the heat working hard to make a comeback from the 59 degree nighttime minimum, and one of Blake's favorite things to do is get bundled onto the couch while I make breakfast. I think he's watching Dragon Tales or Clifford.

Potential "Christmas letter" photo. I really have been trying to get few of us that I might make into a collage photo. Or not. Depends on how I feel, so leave me alone!

You're so pushy.

Oops, forgot to set the timer. He's not mad, just wondering what I'm doing. I have an end table, upon which is perched an upside down mop bucket, upon which is perched my Joby tripod with a VERY NICE digital camera mounted to it.

Also, though we are not wearing coats, note the receding snow through the fence and the nasty brown grass. Spring WAS COMING, I was sure of it.

First read through a gift: The Potty Book for Boys. I thought it was hilarious, and now Blake recites it to me, while saying, "When I get potty-trained, I can go to preschool." Five minutes later, he's coming to tell me he's pooped, and he wants to see it.

Laurie, thanks for the book.
Mom, thanks for letting him peek in his diaper.

I'm a lucky, lucky girl.

The view from my back door yesterday morning.

Winter is crushing my soul.


I have resolution on my childcare situation. It is a huge weight off my mind and heart, and while the location is extremely inconvenient, it's a place that I know Blake will love and be well-taught. He starts the second week of May.

Also, if I get motivated, keep your eyes peeled for a pictures and video post a little later tonight.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


A few of the "reasons" I tried to use to figure out what was wrong with me:
  • It's still snowing, and spring is a cruel hoax perpetuated by people in warm climates.
  • I have mold in my crawl space.
  • I'm PMS-ing...all month long.
  • I'm overworked and overtired.
  • I have dry skin.
  • I have a son who wakes up with the energy of a triple Americano, while I wake up with the energy of one of his battery-powered toys that he keeps leaving on.
  • God had me on mute.
  • I don't have a plan for childcare after May.
  • I watch too much Law & Order.
  • I have to do too much laundry.
  • I ran out of ice cream/chocolate/anything else with refined sugar.
  • I ate too much ice cream/chocolate/everything else with refined sugar.
I don't think any of those sound too desperate. I'm nothing if not rational.

something smells

I have had a difficult month+. I have been pretty forthright about it, honestly expressing my feelings - even when unpleasant - and I've been trying to figure what's caused it, as blue funks are rare for me. I was completely bewildered and felt overwhelmed by pretty much everything. While I wanted to live in the joy of the resurrection and the joy of my love for the Lord, life, my son, my friends, my blessings...I was unable to. I was discouraged and looking for the end of it, ready for the encouraging stuff to happen.

It was maddening. I found myself becoming "that girl," the one who cannot have a single conversation without bringing up my singleness. "Where IS he? Why aren't I married? I'm a catch...aren't I?" I have always found "that girl" tiresome and immature, and yet there I was, almost helpless in my wallowing. I was crying in front of my son, and it worried him to the point that he had a difficult time when away from me - leading to guilt about having to work.

I felt my heart hardening from grief and sorrow into anger at my circumstances and my inability to change them. Despite my prayers for the tide to turn, for something encouraging to come my way, on Saturday, the last straw fell: during my kitchen floor repair (water leak from summer 2007), mold was found in my sub-floor and my crawl space. Being told about it by sympathetic friends helped, but they were emphatic: something needed to be done. That something costs between $2500-3500.

I was stoic for a while, then I fell apart. I was confused and foundering, hearing conflicting information from two men I trusted ("Everyone has mold," from Dad, "This is a potential health risk," from the friend). What to do? Prayers for peace were ineffective, and I felt utterly lost.

During church on Sunday, it was as though God lifted a veil and gave me a grip. Something changed to the point that I could look at my life and be wry, as opposed to being in the depths of despair. I looked at the mold in my crawlspace and agree with my father - I've seen more mold on a pizza (we're still fixing it, but at a price I can stomach). Instead of seeing a knight in shining armor as the encouragement I need, I'm praying for a magically potty-trained boy (it could happen) and entry into a preschool I feel good about. I painted my toenails and did an obscene amount of laundry. I've continued to focus on what I am grateful for, and though this practice didn't pull my from my funk, I'm still grateful for a great deal in my life. I sent Blake to Billings for a few days so I could continue to pull myself together, and it worked.

I am sorry to all of you to whom I have whined and complained. That's no fun to be around, and it was pretty selfish of me. While I may have plenty over which to grieve, I'm working on limiting that to appropriate times and places...and focusing on the plenty on which I can delight myself. Join me, won't you?

Friday, April 4, 2008

may explain my recent mood...

A study conducted by UCLA’s Department of Psychiatry has revealed that the kind of face a woman finds attractive on a man can differ depending on where she is in her menstrual cycle. For example: If she is ovulating, she is attracted to men with rugged and masculine features. However, if she is menstruating, or menopausal, she tends to be more attracted to a man with duct tape over his mouth and a spear lodged in his ass while he is on fire.
No further studies are expected.