3.25.2013

Monday Miscellany

This was going to be a Five for Friday kind of post.

Then I ended up spending Friday evening in a Benadryl haze.

Annelise and I have had the sneakiest cough-cold-allergy-mystery illness for the last sweet forever. I say sneaky because we think we've whipped it and then, BAM, it's back, mocking us.

Benadryl led to Mucinex which led to NyQuil last night (for me) and not to jinx everything but... I feel a smidge better today. Still cough-y but not prone on the couch clutching my Kleenex in a death grip, so that's progress.

I spent a chunk of time today cleaning Annelise's room and bathroom, which left me equal parts proud of myself and mad at myself (and truth be told, a bit frustrated with her too). Proud because I cleaned out a bunch of clutter that had been in her bathroom cabinets and drawers for years for no good reason but mad too because of 1.) the general nastiness and the fact she's been telling me she's done this or that (picking up her room, cleaning her sink, et cetera) and well, we obviously have highly divergent ideas of what picking up and cleaning actually mean (or she gets distracted 1/4 of the way through...SQUIRREL!...and abandons everything) and b.) the fact I haven't been checking her room or bathroom regularly, because honestly, it's rarely pleasant and it tends to lead to raised voices and tempers flaring, so I've been in denial. And lazy.

So.

I think it's time (er...again) to try to have more structure, like a weekly schedule or job chart. For both of us.

In other news, Friday afternoon was frought with drama (before the Benadryl).

Annelise was bebopping her way into the garage to get her bicycle to ride over to Pappo and Grandma's house (two doors down, but not the Dolly Parton song) for a quick visit when we heard blood curdling screams (you know, the real ones) and she burst back into the house red faced, shaking and crying.

There was a snake in the garage.

!!

And?

It was a water moccasin.

!!

The good news is she had barely stepped into the garage and luckily wasn't too close to it (but still) and it went into a defensive position with its scary teeth bared which actually *froze it* for a moment or two, which was long enough for our handy dandy neighbor  Mr. Richard to whack its head off with a hoe.

As you do.

In other non-snake related news, Annelise and her team (AKA: us) finished her science fair project in the nick of time. 9:25 Wednesday night and it was of course due the next morning.

What? Technically we still had plenty of time.

While it was something of a team effort, she did the majority of the work herself (really), she typed everything out, drew one graph herself and Scott helped create another one on the computer. She used my decorative scissors to trim her pages, so that's why they look a little wonky, which I kind of love anyway and then hand wrote the question part of her title. Scott and I took over the glue-sticking and layout so it would be straight, or at least basically straight.
She was pretty proud of herself.

As were we.

And I could NOT wait to drive the fool thing to school Thursday morning and say, Sayanora Sucker, or at least buh-bye. Whichever.

So now, in closing (cue the band), I leave you with two quick randoms.
I'm obsessed with green earrings.

Like I want to wear them everyday as a pop of color for no good reason other than I want to.

And soccer season has started.
I love these little legs!

Well, I guess they're not so little any more, long legs is more apt.

Her first practice was tonight and she was glad (and so were we) to be with her same coach as last season (fall) and most of the same players (this is the third season for several of them to play together, which really lets them gel as a team and know each other's strengths).

And that, my friends, is a wrap on this batch of miscellany.

G'nite.

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3.20.2013

Wits End

Because with this whole mothering thing I get one thing right and ten things wrong.

I need to pray more.

I mean, I do, of course, but at best it's sporadic instead of consistent and intentional (like a good habit should be). I need to pray more specifically (and regularly) regarding Annelise's behavior, her attitude, my attitude and our relationship in general.

I want to praise her strengths, positive character qualities and choices more instead of what feels like constantly dealing with negative behaviors or choices, I feel like I am too often playing defense instead of offense and that needs to change.

She is independent, strong willed and opinionated, none of which is a bad quality, but we are working (struggling with) on her expressing those character traits in the proper way. We're dealing with tone of voice (sassiness), talking back, attitude (complaining or emoting) and prompt obedience all of which stem from respect, self-control and well, willingness to obey.

Not that these behaviors are constant but they have been recurring often enough that I am desperate to see improvement. When we hear sassiness or talking back, etc. we call her on it, talk about it and remind her to speak nicely, don't argue, blah, blah, blah (and I say blah, blah, blah because that's what it sounds like to me and probably to her because it's happening at some point almost every day).

There are always flare ups after she's watched Disney or other *kids* shows, so those are off limits again (why do they ever come back? I'm weak I guess).

She's lost almost all privileges over the last few weeks and this morning she lost watching Duck Dynasty until further notice. We've reviewed different scriptures (she's even had to write some out) and talked again and again about respect.

But I'm not seeing improvement, or when I do it's fleeting (one step forward, three steps back). Are my expectations too high? Ouch. Maybe. Is it because I'm trying too hard to correct instead of model? Ouch. Maybe. I'm working on my tone and attitude (this is ongoing, y'all) as well. I'm also trying to praise her good choices and behaviors instead of criticizing, yet still be consistent with reminding/redirecting her when disrespect raises its ugly head.

So now that I'm at what feels like my wits end I'm turning to my scriptures and more prayer.

Which is what I should have done first.

I'm going to choose a few scriptures that relate to these issues we're having and pray them over her (well, for her). I'm also committing to pray more in general and maybe even with her about all of these things.

My goal is not perfection but to make imperfect progress.

I'm confident that God can work this out.

*Advice?*

3.16.2013

Six for Saturday

Hey y'all.

01.) Annelise's science fair project, the final leg with the completed logbook and display board, is due this coming Thursday. My goal is for her to wrap it all up with a bow tomorrow, or at least have the bulk of it finished and ready to be glued to the board.

Her goal is to not.

We shall see who wins.

And?

I am really, really trying to bury my controlling tendencies and allow her creative juices to flow so that it reflects her and not me (or Scott, but he did help her create bar graphs on the computer) yet still be neat, somewhat polished and cute.

02.) Are y'all watching The Bible series on the History Channel?  (It comes on Sunday nights and if you've missed the first two episodes so far you can still catch up, so set your DVR.)

We are loving it! The producers are doing a great job bringing the major stories of the Old Testament (so far we're through David) to life with mostly accurate depiction. Seeing it acted out takes the stories we've read to a whole other level and imprints them differently on our brains and our heart AND it's making for some really good family conversation as well.

Win-win!

03.) And on another TV note, we are a little late to the Duck Dynasty party, but are hooked on the Robertsons just the same.

They are a hoot! We love their quirks, although some of the wild game skinning (nekked squirrels anyone?) grosses me out, but most importantly we love how they share a positive message about family  values, God and Jesus (some things slip past the editors--YAY), old-school truths (Phil) with plenty of crazy redneck fun (Uncle Si and the rest of the gang). I don't know if I have a favorite character, I like them each for different reasons.

I love that Si carries his own jug of tea and a tupperware glass (we totally had a set of those, did you?) (in one episode he said he's never without his tea and his bible, love that).

Happy, happy, happy.
Hey.

04.) Annelise took a short video yesterday of how she *redecorated* her room but then told me not to put it on my blog. I'm honoring her wishes (good mom pat on the back), but it was really cute. She's been collecting oodles of animal posters from her National Geographic Kids' magazines and decided to plaster her room with them along with a few from One Direction (gasp!) and Lego.

She said she used a whole roll of tape.

I believe her.

05.) In the spirit of St. Patrick's Day I painted my nails Mojito Madness (a minty green polish by Essie).

And that's about as much effort I'm planning to put toward St. Paddy's.

Well, that and I changed out my lovely subway art frame.
(That was a FAB birthday gift from my girlfriends, it's filled with different subway art photos, one for almost every holiday.)

And we need to buy some Lucky Charms.

What? Are we going overboard?

06.) I noticed I only had 7 blog posts last month and it hurt my heart. I miss blogging regularly and documenting not only the big events but the ordinary miscellany of life too. I don't know, I talk myself out of blogging some things because Annelise is older now and not only does she read my blog she doesn't want some things blogged about, and I need to respect that of course.

But I hate not documenting more of my thoughts (both superficial and deep), being real (you know, the good, the bad and the ugly) and telling more of my story without worrying how I come across (I tend to over think things).

Not that I plan (or even want) to blog every single day or feel pressured to do so, but I'd like to blog more than once a week (not that it matters but it does serve as an outlet for my jumbled brain as well as a record of, well, me).

And speaking of blogging, I always appreciate y'alls comments (but don't feel pressured to comment or anything, but it's nice to know y'all are out there from time to time just the same). I apologize for being hit or miss about replying to comments, although lately I've been trying to reply within the comments, especially to a question, although I must admit it still feels like I'm talking one-sided. In the past I tried to respond to comments through e-mail, and I still do from time to time, but not everyone has an email address attached to their comment (like a no reply blogger address) so it doesn't always work.

But I like to reply when I can, especially if someone asked a question or I need to clarify something, but wither way, it's nice to know you've been heard.

So now I'm curious (not that I get a lot of comments anyway), but do you expect a response if you leave a comment on someone's blog? Do you prefer e-mail or comment replies? Or do you care, like if you get one, hey, that's nice but you're fine either way?

Okay. Thanks.

Happy (happy, happy) weekending, y'all!

3.13.2013

Opening Lines

As we stepped out into the bright sunlight from the darkness of the movie house we had only two things on our minds...

Wreck It Ralph and Sonic Happy Hour.

My apologies to S.E. Hinton for taking a bit of creative liberty with her fantastic opening sentence from the teen (and adult) classic The Outsiders.

Ponyboy Curtis was actually thinking about Paul Newman and a ride home.

But Annelise and I had just seen the antithesis of Paul Newman, Wreck It Ralph and were thirsty.
(We had seen it at the $1.50 theater and I refuse to buy drinks or treats that cost more than the movie, that said, I rarely buy treats at the regular movies either.)

(That's why I carry a big purse.)

(Shhh.)

I re-read The Outsiders and watched the movie over the weekend (all of those fabulous actors (minus Tom, because I can't in good conscience call what he does acting) were soooo young) and was reminded what an excellent story it is.

With an excellent opening line.

So of course I got to thinking about which opening lines would make my Top 5 (or Top 10).

And I'm still thinking on it.

I even googled lists of best opening sentences and from the lists I read (granted, only three) I realized I must be close to illiterate because I haven't read a fraction of the books listed.

I really need to read more classics.
(I thought I was doing fairly well.)

But I whole heartedly agreed with several of their choices (at least if I had read the book) like Anna Karenina, Pride and Prejudice and The Catcher in the Rye.

I'd still add To Kill a Mockingbird, because, well... hello.

And of course, The Bible, because, well...hello.

I'm sure there are several more I should add but it's late and I'm hearing crickets chirp in my head.

What opening lines would make your Top 5 (or Top 10) list?

3.12.2013

This & That Tuesday

This: Annelise's spring break started two days early when she came down with a mysterious fever Wednesday night along with congestion.  Children's Motrin, a pre-dawn trip to our bed, a Mickey jug of water and a good book helped her face Thursday with a brave face. Or for at least as long as the Motrin lasted.
That: She shared her sickness with me (I guess) but not the fever part, just a wicked sore throat and a bit of congestion. Thanks to a heavy dosing of zinc lozenges and Airborne it passed quickly.

This: I had a little sidekick with me Friday (she was much better but still within the *must be fever free for 24 hours* window) for errands, one of which was getting my grey (eek!) roots touched up. 
That: I really love how Instagram filters camouflage annoying things like boils zits. If only I could walk around with a constant IG filter, right?

This: Five Guys Burgers & Fries have now taken the top spot as far as fast food burgers go in our rotation. And? I love their Cajun fries.
That: A long overdue pedicure was on the agenda for Monday. I was terribly embarrassed at the overly crunchtastic state of my tootsies, like, I should have used an alias but the nail lady knows me. She even insisted on the bags of hot wax because, well, my feet were in dire need of every possible form of moisturizing.

This: Is the end result. Much, much better. OPI's My Paprika Is Hotter Than Yours, blingy flips and a lovely spring afternoon. Bliss. (But, yeah, my feet are still bony, hammer toed, bunioned and crooked, try not to be jealous, m'kay?) 
That: Annelise came home from a sleepover at Pappo and Grandma's house with...

THIS:
That: A girl should always have back-up ammunition, I guess.
This: I did really, really well with my food choices yesterday AND I did my Insanity workout (can I get a woot-woot?) (after a few days off with The Cold) and felt much better, like I was getting back on track.

That: Then we went to IHOP for a little brekky for din din. 
As you do.
This: I am completely infatuated with my new leather cuff from Farm Girl Paints (sorry, her shop is closed until May), like I might need to worry about wearing out the leather from constant wear kind of infatuated. Also? I never knew I was the kind of girl that could wear a leather cuff, and maybe I'm deluding myself, but it makes me feel all edgy and cool. 

That: Most importantly it reminds me to *Be a blessing*.


What are some This & Thats happening with you?

3.06.2013

Seven Things

Okay, seriously y'all, how is it already the second week of March? 
(I know, I say something to that effect every single month, I can't help myself.)

Once again I'm resorting to my favorite standby blog tool, a list.
(I can't help myself.)

01.) Over the weekend we had a fun community outreach/event at our church to kick-off a gospel meeting (yes, that's an old-fashioned term, almost as old as revival, I guess, but I don't really know what else to call it) that's been going on this week.

The face painting booth was a hit!
This photo was taken pre-mustache (which was purple) (yes).

02.) I'm on my second week of Insanity and guess what? It's actually a teensy tiny bit easier than the first. Which is good. I made it through the whole warm-up for Pure Cardio yesterday without stopping AND didn't have to hit pause as often during the remaining craziness, so that's progress.

03.) Scott is doing Insanity too, which is good because we can challenge each other ( as in, "I did my workout today, are you gonna do yours or wimp out? NAH, naah, nah, nah, nah!") and commiserate over the pain.

04.) Annelise lost a tooth Monday right before we went to the dentist.

05.) The Tooth Fairy was SOOOOO busy she couldn't come until Tuesday night.

06.) I remembered how much I like no-heat curls again.
I was in such a state of terrible time management (as in none) yesterday (I had planned to go to a lunch at our church and hear the guest preacher BUT I did my workout too late and then had to shower AND wash my hair and as I stood in my closet at 11:50 with wet hair and no make-up I realized I was so not going to make the 12:00 lunch, so I felt like a super duper loser, but hey, what else is new?), which I guess all of that has nothing to do with no-heat curls except they helped me get ready faster and easier since I was still overheated from my workout and shower and the LAST thing I wanted to do was hold a piping hot curling iron (or flat iron) to my head.

I blew dry my hair until it was 95% ish dry, worked a little Moroccan argon oil and shine stuff through my hair and then wrapped it all (except my bangs) around a low headband. I left it on for about 30ish minutes and BOOM,  let there be curls. 

06.) I did make it to Annelise's field trip to the local one room schoolhouse.

Albeit a little late.

(Re: above super duper loser statement.)
It was a wonderful living history program that did a fabulous job of transporting the kids back to 1898 and giving them an authentic glimpse into a typical school day.

Our docent did not brook any shenanigans, which was highly refreshing.
The boys and girls sat separately and in height order to represent how they might have sat with the various age ranges (youngest in front). They alternated working on spelling, arithmetic, reading and history, peppered with visits to the outhouse (they had to raise two fingers) (yes, even I had to visit--too much water during my workout, so I raised my two fingers).
It was a great afternoon!

07.) Annelise's book report wasn't technically due until tomorrow but I couldn't stand the pieces sitting on the kitchen counter any longer (she'd typed things up and cut out *clouds* over the weekend).

I asked her if she wanted to add cotton balls or glitter (I whispered that) and of course she opted for the glitter.

So that was fun.

(Can you hear my sarcasm?)
But it feels GREAT to be finished (one day early!) and freed up to focus on her science fair project (all that remains is filling out her logbook and of course, the display board (I'm scared, what if she wants to add glitter?), which is what we'll be doing over spring break next week. Whee!)

I'm so excited.

(I know, sarcasm is a tool of the weak, but what can I say?)
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