5.30.2012

Little Dancing Queen (Recital 2012)

As I may have mentioned once or thrice, Annelise had her dance recital two weeks ago down in Galveston at The Grand Opera House. This was her sixth year (I know!) and she performed in four different routines, one of which we danced together, which I may have also mentioned once or thrice or eleventy times over the last five months or so as we learned our dance. Or at least as I tried to learn the dance.

Rhythm. I am lacking.

But I try.

We were Angry Birds this year and danced to a song called Chirpy, Chirpy, Cheep Cheep.

And yes, that really is a song.

Here's my little angry bird.
Who's not really angry at all.

I felt a LOT better about our costumes this year than last year's gingham spandex spectacles (at least for the moms, the girls outfits were cute last year), since we basically just had pants (but not hot or too spandex-y) and a ZONK top.

The fish net sleeves I could have done without, but no one asked me.
Okay, without further ado, I present to you our mother daughter tap dance for 2012.

(Deep breath)

Annelise and I are on the middle-left-ish.

(What was really special this year was we got to dance with our dear friends Heather and Macy!!)

In Act II Annelise danced the rest of her routines.

First up was a ballet number to Life is a Bowl of Cherries.

(Annelise is in the back middle left-ish at first.)

Then her tap dance to Spooky.
(Annelise is on the right and still in the back. Sigh.)

And finally, here is her jazz number to Shake It Up (no, not The Cars, the Disney TV show).

She was SOOOO excited to get to lead a column this year and we were really proud of her!

(We'll just overlook that she got a little excited about all of this and started her column's contagion a wee bit early, m'kay?)

And after a whirlwind of make-up and tutus and tights and costume changes and dance numbers galore, the recital drew to a close. Even though it's a busy weekend with the dress rehearsal the day before and then the performance it's always a great culmination of a year's hard work.
We were all quite proud of our little dancing queen!

5.29.2012

Because Lists are Easy

So it's almost been a week since my last blog post.

I don't quite know who I am anymore.

In a somewhat feeble attempt to get my bloggy groove back I am resorting to a random list.

Oh goody.

1). I know this is so last week, but I am still so happy about Phillip Phillips winning American Idol. I know, it's just a show, a gimmicky one at that, but not only is he crazy talented and comfortable in his own skin doing his own quirky Phillip Phillips thing (and he does it well), he seems like a nice guy you could hang out with.

And his performance of Home was out.stand.ing.

I love, love, love what Emily said about his winning and his performance immediately after hearing he won.

Beautiful. Is what it is.

2.) Are y'all as excited as I am that So You Think You Can Dance is back just in time for summer?

I know. A life. I should get one.

But it's such good TV y'all.

3.) We had a great little family getaway to San Antonio over the long weekend.

Now I have to get myself together and blog about it soon.

4.) There are only two (well, one and a half really) days of school left.

That means I have one day to get teacher gifts ready.

Well, a partial day because I want Annelise to pick out a few things with me.

But we've talked about it and have a plan, so fingers crossed we get everything done at the last minute.

(Why am I suddenly singing David Bowie Pressure in my head?)

5.) No, I haven't forgotten what I said last week about blogging about Annelise's dance recital.

I just haven't done it yet.

Obvs.

But I will.

6.) Annelise's end of the year school party was today.

Is this a fairly new thing? I mean, like in the last 40ish years? I don't remember end of school parties when I was growing up.

This year's party was basically a repeat of last year's, which was fine with me because it's low-key and it was fine with Annelise because she LOVES to skate.

I even skated.
After I bought a pair of crew socks for $2.00 because I was scatterbrained this morning and forgot to bring my own from home.

Nothing says hip and cool better than crew socks, roller-skates and shorts.

Am I right?

This year though we skated first and then went to the park for lunch and play.

And when I say play, I mean the kids, because it was H.O.T. and my survival strategy was to move as little as possible.

The kids got to eat Chick-Fil-A, which they thought was cool, and it was. While I adore Chick-Fil-A as much as the next person, I abstained today because 1.) I didn't want to eat fast food just coming off vacation eating (not that it was extreme, but you know...) and b.) I'm a rather high-maintenance Chick-Fil-A consumer, meaning while I almost always order the same thing, the chicken strip meal, I like to have a buffet of sauces (Polynesian, Honey Mustard and good ol' Chick-Fil-A sauce), preferably two of each, to dip my strips and fries in. I figured my chances of getting any sauce, much less two of each, while they're trying to fulfill a huge class order were slim.

So I brought something from home instead (a hard boiled egg, sliced pear, string cheese and water) (just in case any of y'all care).
The kids had fun, no one melted or got hurt, so I'd say all things considered, it was a good day.

7.) Have y'all noticed I haven't posted anything about Project Life in, oh what is it, just this side of forever?

Yeah.

I guess I'm about two-ish months behind.

But I haven't quit.

Maybe I'll get back into it once school is out.

Fingers crossed.

(I kind of hate that I am something of an all or nothing type personality, like either obsessed or over it.)

I guess that's enough randoms for one day.

You're welcome.

Happy Tuesday, almost Wednesday, y'all!

5.23.2012

Well, Hellooooooo


She said in her best Seinfeld voice.

By the way, that picture is totally random and has nothing whatsoever to do with this post.

Except that it's a photo of me about to sip coffee, which is fairly common.

Who loves her curling iron like it's 1986? Is it me?

I promise I did not intend to abandon the blog for a week.
I'm not quite sure how that happened.

Well, I guess I do.
It's called fits of busy-ness mixed in with a few bouts of laziness I suppose.

I really shouldn't be blogging right now, seeing as I'm still in my sweaty workout clothes and I should probably either vacuum or shower before picking up Annelise in approximately 36 minutes.
But I probably won't do either.
(I mean, I will eventually, of course).
Procrastination. I'm pretty good at it.

Is it just me or are y'all ready for summer too?
Things are winding down, which is nice.
No more soccer, no more dance, only a few days of school left and then I'll have a third grader (say what?).
I feel like May is wrapping up nicely, but it's doing so at super turbo warp speed or something.
Wasn't it August, like, yesterday?

In other news, I'm working on a post about Annelise's dance recital, which was last weekend.
And we did our mother daughter tap routine and lived to tell the tale.
Which is good.
So, um...yeah, that post--complete with videos (!!)--should be coming soon to a computer near you.

By the way, did you know it takes something like a ridunkulous 48+ minutes to upload a 2:30 video to YouTube?
And when you have four videos to load, and oops! you accidentally loaded the same one twice instead of the one you needed and have to start all over, you aren't annoyed at all.

So, um...yeah, stay tuned.

Happy Wednesday, y'all!

5.16.2012

Put Me in the Zoo

Except don't. I'd feel weird if hoards of strangers strolled by me every day, looking at me and thumping on the glass to see if I'd do something.

In all honesty a small part of me (okay, not so small) was dreading Annelise's second grade field trip to the zoo yesterday.

Please don't throw anything at me, m'mkay?

I was all kinds of worried about the possible heat, which I don't handle well, and huge crowds, which I don't handle well and whining children, which I don't handle well.

Are you sensing a pattern?

But I pulled up my big girl zoo chaperon panties anyway and went with it.

In the rain no less.

The good news is the rain tapered off to a light drizzle then eventually quit altogether and for whatever reason it was only in the low 70s yesterday with cloud cover. In mid-May in Texas.
Praise. And glory.
The calm, graceful giraffes; the leopard; and Annelise in a cool tunnel in the aquarium area.

I had three children to keep track of, one of which was of course, mine. We tagged up with another mom in charge of two girls for, well...pretty much the whole day. It worked out well to only have five small people to you know, not lose.

I didn't take my big mac daddy camera, only my phone. It was hard decision, but in the end comfort trumped zoom capability and quality.
We all chipped in and got each kid in our little gaggle (plus two more tag-a-longs) a smushed souvenir penny as we were leaving the reptile house. Annelise's face should convey her utter disappointment that only her cobra penny was *rusty* and everybody else's penny was bright, shiny and new. I not so gently encouraged her to let. it. go.
Another leopard eyeing a mama bird trying to feed her littles in a nest in the palm tree; the chimpanzees were amusing; no not a longhorn--an Ankara from Africa; and the elephants, especially the babies were highly entertaining.

After much touring and animal gazing it was finally time for lunch.

That is, once Mrs. H. and I schlepped out to my car for the class coolers and back. I was eagerly anticipating my Subway sandwich and Diet Coke.
Guess who left her Diet Coke and Annelise's water at home? Was it me?
Guess who spent $6.00 on water? Was it me?
Guess who has no idea what a skosh of mayo means? Is it the Subway guy?

After lunch there was a bit of playing and climbing and general silliness before finally remembering we were at the zoo after all and we had plenty of animals yet to see.

And then someone started whining for Dippin' Dots.

And soon there were several someones chiming in (at least those someones with parents in attendance).
And of course that led to buying Dippin' Dots for all the precious someones in our gaggle.
I hope those frozen dots of overpriced ice cream made up for that *rusty* penny and not buying anything in the gift shop.

In the end we managed to see most of the animals, but not all, and of course Annelise was a tad disappointed. When she was ever so gently reminded of the time wasted spent hither and yon (like climbing on the fake animals after lunch and not wanting to leave that area) and how that took away time from seeing all the exhibits, she accepted that logic. Mostly.

She ultimately declared this the best field trip ever.

I'm glad.

5.14.2012

On Mother's Day

It's nice to have a day to celebrate mothers isn't it?

While the rational side of me agrees with this, the emotional side of me gets all kinds of messed up.
Still.
After all these years.
Not in a uncontrollable-can't-function-wallow-under-the-covers-in-a-fetal-position-heap or anything, but it's bittersweet.

I wish I could talk to my mom and grandmother. I wish they knew Annelise. I wish she knew them. I wish I had had more time with them. More memories. More stories. More influence.
There's just this emptiness and longing inside me for a mother and grandmother. It's not as raging as it used to be, it's softer, but it's still there. After almost 30 years.

On Mother's Day I think about all of those things even more, like it's amplified in digital surround sound. I remember my years of infertility and longing to be pregnant and give birth (yes, really). I remember that time of hope and loss and emptiness. I think about those that might be aching over those same longings. I think about Annelise's birth mother out there somewhere. I think about adoption. I think about being a mom and all the things I think I do wrong and pat myself on the back when I get it right. I think about regrets and the future. I think about friends that are missing their mothers or grandmothers on this Hallmark holiday.

All those feelings swirl around in my head like an emotional egg roll, yet I somehow manage (usually) to put on a happy face and soldier on.

As you do.
Scott and Annelise showered me with treats which was sweet.
My favorite was Annelise's card she made for me at school.
That's me.
And this is what she wrote about me.
I have been on a roasted veggie with avocado kick lately, but I'm surprised she forgot to mention my Tex-Mex addiction as well.
They gave me a new Otterbox cover for my phone which was highly appreciated because my old one was all stretched out at the bottom and let all kinds of dirt and dust into my phone (it was the older version, this new one is for the iPhone 4s and is much tighter and less rubbery feeling).
I like the pink and grey!
They also gave me lotion to go with the new-ish fragrance I've been wearing lately (Euphoria by Calvin Klein--it was really hard for me to go back to Calvin after my late 80s early 90s break-up with Eternity).
And my favorite flower, tulips.

After scrambling off in a flurry for bible class and church (no relaxing breakfast & coffee in bed!) and scrambling back home after to make the icing for a lemon cake, starting laundry, and quickly opening gifts before scrambling over to my dad and Peggy's house for a yummy BBQ lunch with her family and an afternoon of swimming, basketball, dog-chasing and boys against girls baseball for Annelise and the rest of the kids and chit-chat, coffee drinking and golf tourney watching for the grown-ups.

Which are all the makings of a nice day.

How was your Mother's Day?

5.12.2012

Six for Saturday

I've started and stopped this post three or four times already this morning. That's not to say I've been interrupted or distracted (just a bit) or ambivalent (maybe) about posting. Ahem.

So before I can wimp out again, in the words of Pink, let's get this party started.

01.) Annelise's soccer game was rained out today (that's why I'm still sitting here sipping coffee in my PJs) after a torrential downpour last night. It really bugs me when the weather guys on the news say torrential 32 times in one update, just thought you should know.

But speaking of soccer, with this rain out the season is pretty much over for Annelise. There is still one more game left--along with the end of season pizza party--next Saturday but she won't be able to play or party because her dance recital is next Saturday afternoon. She was crushed when she found out about the conflict but has since rallied.

02.) And speaking of her dance recital, that's when we'll be dancing our mother-daughter tap dance as Angry Birds up on the big stage in front of family and friends and hoards of strangers.

I might throw up.

Honestly though, I feel better about this routine than last year's hootenanny. There's still one step that eludes me (a winged time step, twice) but I do feel like I know most of the dance fairly well. I think.

Since the girls are in front of us for the majority of the dance, my plan is to smile really big and make sure my arms are doing the right thing at least.

Maybe that will work?

03.) While making an emergency run to Target the other morning, and yes, it really was an emergency because I had dropped my Keurig water container on our tile when refilling it and of course it cracked and started leaking, so I had to get myself a new one (Happy Mother's Day to me I guess!), and we were out of Pringles, I grabbed this word search book from the $ Spot for Annelise.

(My name is Holly and I like to use run-on sentences. A lot.)

This is how she spent the majority of her afternoon after school that day.
But I'm glad that little surprise made her day.

And? She's apparently all legs and feet encased in really big shoes (size 4.5!! What the what?).

04.) It's so nice to have minions.
Er...I mean helpers.

05.) I'll probably jinx myself by typing this, but I lost 1.2 pounds this week. 

(!!)

That's my first official deficit since starting My Fitness Pal oh so many months ago.

This week I added two rounds of ChaLEAN Extreme Burn 1 & 2 workouts to my TurboFire routine and I must say, it felt really good to be working out with weights again. I only did two days of TurboFire this week because my right foot started talking to me, I think it was telling me all the jumping these last few weeks was straining it and also please get some new shoes. I finished out the week (Th & Fri.) with two cardio workouts from ChaLEAN Extreme that I had forgotten I loved, Burn it Off, which is a 30 minute interval training routine and Burn Intervals which has short intense cardio (1-2 minutes) followed by weights for 1-2 minutes, for a total of 45 sweat dripping minutes.

But it was great!

Next week I'm planning to continue a TurboFire/ChaLEAN hybrid to have cardio and strength together, at least 3 days of weights and 5-6 days cardio (mainly intervals).

06.) After getting my hairs all did (that's fancy talk for color and cut), Scott and I grabbed a late lunch at our favorite Mediterranean place. I would show you a picture but I can't get it to upload properly here on the blog for some reason (it is in my Instagram feed though on my sidebar). Yesterday was his every other Friday off and he played in a golf tournament hosted by his company while I spent the better part of the morning and early afternoon with foils sticking out of my head every which way.

I was really hoping to get a good two or three days of wear out of my salon shampoo and style but I think she went a little product happy and it's already looking flat and dull. What the what?

Happy weekend, y'all!

5.08.2012

Saying Yes

I am not a mom that says yes.
At least not that easily or often.
I am more of a maybe, we'll see, or not now, later type of mom.
And let's not forget my favorite, no.

Annelise knows this, I mean, let's face it, she's a sharp cookie and is 8 and has known me for seven years.
Not that I never say yes, but she knows who she should asks first around here if she is jonesing to get her way.

However, the sheer joy that results when I do say yes to something is even sweeter.
Maybe she appreciates my yes a little bit more.
Since it's a rare bird and all.

Case in point: 
She asked for cinnamon toast for an after school snack yesterday.
And then almost fell over when she saw me get the skillet, butter, bread, sugar and cinnamon out.
Totally made her day.

Of course I may or may not have made a piece for me too.
But still.

Maybe I should say yes more often.

Are you a yes mom?

5.07.2012

Weekending

Annelise and I started our weekend off on the right foot, well at least on a tasty foot, with a trip to Sonic Happy Hour right after school.
Our sights were set on just drinks at first but we were soon tempted by tater tots.

There I sat, in the driver's seat, in my workout clothes (but still pre-workout, and yes, it was 3:45) almost drooling over tater tots. What in the world?

So I did what any sane person would.

I ordered them with chili and cheese (Annelise had hers plain).

The good news is I did eventually do my TurboFire (much later, once my tummy settled of course).

Saturday started with a lazyish morning, complete with sleeping in and not running outside like I had planned (but I made up for it with a dose of TurboFire) followed by a mid-afternoon soccer game.

Smack dab in the middle of hot with a side order of sun.

Thankfully there was a slight breeze along with plenty of water breaks for the players.

Did you know my hair is growing? It really is, even though it's hard to tell sometimes. It's not long enough for an up-do clip or a cute single ponytail, but...guess what?

I can wear pigtails.

(!!)

Now I'm not sure if a 43 year old woman should wear pigtails, but they kept my hair off my neck, so I am a fan.
However, I am not a fan of the Yelly McYellersons that Scott and I mistakenly set up our chairs beside on the sidelines. 

And they were yelling for the other team.
One was some sort of Army drill sergeant (for reals, he was in fatigues and boots), and I think he was their coach.
LOUD and bossy. Is what he was.

And then...another McYellerson plopped himself down right. in. front. of me for a good long while to watch the game and yell his head off.
There's a whole segment of the game where I have no idea what happened whenever the ball was in the left corner of the field. Hrumph.

Sunday started off in a hustle and bustle to get to church without spilling our crock pot of taco soup onto the lemon cake or all over the back of our car (it's really a good idea to leave even earlier than normal when transporting dangerous cargo since sudden stops or hair pin turns can be quite detrimental to both cargo and car, but of course we did not do this). Thankfully though we made it and nothing spilled.

We hadn't prepared anything or stayed for a potluck lunch in, well, as Annelise tells it, well over a year. That might be true. And a bit sad at the same time. We (and let's face it, me, since I'm the one that would be cooking) used to be really good about going to potlucks and then, well...stopped. Whenever I'd see one planned I'd think, "Oh yeah, we need to go, I'll make XY or Z" and then Saturday night would roll around and I'd lose all motivation to cook XY or Z, much less go to the store in the first place.

For whatever reason I followed through on my intentions this time (yay!) and we actually went. Yesterday's potluck was extra special because it was Senior Sunday and there was a program to honor all the graduating high school seniors. Annelise really enjoyed the slide show (Scott and I did too) and I could see her brain spinning as she thought about her own senior slide show in the not too distant future (well, 9 or 10 years, but that will still pass like the blink of an eye I'm sure--although I'm in denial about that).

Later that day, since we missed acknowledging May 4th, May the Fourth Be With You, we did the next best thing and settled in to watch Star Wars Episode IV.
Which is my favorite (and Scott's). Annelise likes Episode III, IV and VI the best (I guess it's a tie?).

I remember begging, most likely relentlessly and not annoying at all I'm sure, my parents to take me to see Star Wars Episode IV while we were on vacation somewhere in central Texas during the summer of 1977. I remember waiting in a long line to get our tickets and being so excited to finally see this movie. I loved it!

My dad fell asleep.

I remember my mom thinking R2D2 was cute.

But I can't say my parents were fans of all things Star Wars.

And that, along with evening church and a yummy Tex-Mex supper with friends (although I have no self control with chips and salsa), was our weekend.

How was yours?

5.04.2012

Five for Friday

A few bits and pieces as of late:

01.) I went for a run last night. (I know!) I've been so up in TurboFire lately and so not getting out of bed at 5:00 to the AM to run before Scott leaves for work and so unmotivated to go out in the evenings because my hairs are done or I've got my face on or I'm tired (read: lazy) that, well...it's been a long time since my feet hit the street. It was a short run (of course) and the bad news is it was such a novel feeling to actually be out on the street with my music pounding in my ears that I totally started out too fast (for me) and the six to eight Pringles I ate for supper really didn't provide me with adequate energy.

But the good news is I still had a great time and plan to repeat the whole thing tomorrow morning (minus the Pringles).

02.) I am so happy we have wood floors. I mean, I always have been, this is nothing new. And let me be clear, they are not perfect, some places are scratched (note to self: don't let 5 year old do a quick tap dance, if I had a time machine I'd rethink that) and some places are warped a bit (no, I have not forgotten you Hurricane Ike).

But why do I like them lately?

Well, our beloved 9 year old golden retriever, Sadie, could possibly be in a doggie Depends commercial. If they had those. So...um...yeah...there have been a few accidents lately and as it turns out she has a UTI that must be the culprit (we only recently found out after her yearly checkup, we thought she was just getting old or something). Fingers crossed the antibiotics kick in and I won't have to keep creeping into the dining room (she's claimed a particular corner) to see if I have to bust out the paper towels and Lysol again.

03.) If you are looking for a couple of easy yet tasty dinners, well, may I tempt you with this Mexican meatloaf (with turkey and black beans) and sour cream chicken (crunchy bread crumbs and tender chicken). Both are quick to prepare, simple and quite delicious. Scott and Annelise gave four thumbs up, so they are officially in my regular-ish cooking rotation.

04.) I can't stop listening to Some Nights by Fun. Seriously. can't. stop.

05.) American Idol is lame. Or the voting public is lame. Or both. Skylar was the best performer of the whole bunch and now she's gone. Boo!

But Joshua might be edging out Phillip just a hair in talent and performance. But I still think Phillip is a doll. I'm curious though, even though I think those videos/commercials they force the contestants to do every week are d.u.m.b. and major cheese balls covered in nuts, but why isn't Phillip in them too?

Happy, happy Friday y'all!

5.02.2012

I'm Rule Follower. Except for When I'm Not.

I like to think I'm a stand up guy.

I mean girl.

And I can't type or say "I'm a stand up guy" without flashing back to pledging Sigma Theta Chi in 1987 and having to yell "Oliver North is a stand up guy!" whenever we saw our pledge mom (Big Sig) (she thought good ol' Ollie got a raw deal in the whole Iran Contra thing).

All of which is neither here nor there and ultimately has nothing to do with this story.

ANYway, I like to think I am a rule follower in most situations. And I am.

Except for when I'm not.

Take the case of yesterday's tardy. Well, I knew we were late, I saw the barricade blocking the car drop off line, so I knew we had to pay the piper and schlep on into (actually beside, there's a convenient window) the office for an unexcused tardy slip, which we did. After Annelise was in class another classmate of hers came be-bopping on in, from the direction of the Pre-K/sanctuary entrance, and did not get a tardy.

This morning, as we were coming down to the wire, screaming along on two wheels and of course there was a silly amount of traffic and putt-putt drivers along our route to school, we cruised on into the parking lot at 8:30, technically tardy territory. Instead of entering by the office we went through the other side, like said classmate did yesterday, and lo and behold, Annelise did not get a tardy.

So I broke the rules.
Sort of.
I certainly cheated.

However, there should not be such gaping holes (aka alternative entrances) in her school's tardy policy. And the funny thing is I passed a few other moms and technically tardy children on my way out as they were on their way in.

So.

Yesterday I was bothered by the unfairness of one child (mine) getting a tardy while another one didn't.

Today, not so much.

5.01.2012

Hello May {and Hello Curling Iron}

Really? You're here already?
I'm fairly sure Annelise started 2nd grade, like, yesterday, and now she's almost finished.

Time.
You are a jerk.

Annelise got her first tardy (three minutes late) this morning and it was totally my fault, which stinks because we had a pretty good streak going all year.
Why were we late?

Well, see...I had to curl my hair.

Lame.
But true.

I was supposed to help Annelise's class make something for Teacher Appreciation Week, so since I had to be around people, albeit mostly little people, I wanted to be semi-presentable and not all bed headish (yes, I showered, just not shampooed).
Since my hair is still in the awkward growing out process and doesn't currently have a style other than bob-esque, I've been rather bored by my tresses.

Enter attempts to create loose beachy curls.

If you've never seen these hairstyle tutorials you must check them out (I first heard about her from Sincerely Anna, but they are all over Pinterest too). Obsessed. Is what I am. I first tried using my flat iron to create waves but they left a bit too much of a crimpy tail (but maybe I just needed more practice) so I made an emergency trip to Ulta (with Annelise in tow, she was thrilled) for a 1" Hot Tools curling iron.

How 1986 of me.

Have I ever told y'all I used to carry a butane curling iron during high school in my purse so I could touch up my hair after P.E. or between classes?

I also took hot rollers to summer camp.

No, I'm not vain at all.

The above photo does not really show my new look very well, plus I was quite rushed this morning, but I think I'm slowly getting the hang of creating loose curls.

I think I like them.

But my bangs are staging a revolt. Not quite sure what to do with them. Right now they are in time out with a bobby pin.

Annelise likes my wavy look too but Scott is somewhat resistant to change (but won't admit it) so he's still on the fence.

I like how it's a style intentionally just this side of messy.

That's so me.
Have you tried loose curls? Any styling tips?
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