So here's the thing about our family - we live in Mississippi.  And we don't get out much.  So the fact that golf has sort of become our family's favorite sport of choice (to play that is.  we're from the SEC.  of course we are die hard footballers) is a little bit laughable - considering the fact that golf is such a refined and highly mannerous thing.  You know, all the dress codes and etiquette and the fact that you have to watch where you drive and step and you have to be quiet.  None of that sounds like us at all, does it?

    But I think golf has become our thing because it's really all Aaron has left.  The time for football has past.  The occasional pick-up basketball game makes him feel old and beat down.  No one will play tennis with him.  And the last time he played church-league softball he ripped his shoulder into pieces - which he then re-injured when the attic door completely ripped loose from the ceiling and he fell out of the attic and caught himself on beams with his elbows.  All in the name of Christmas decorations.  It was ugly my friend.  He ripped things.  He had a temporary man boob. Yikes.  So I guess the point of all this is to say - golf is his kind of game now.  And because he likes it (and also because our last house was on a really nice golf course so we had unlimited access), our boys have now really taken to it.  At least Aaron, and usually Aaron and the boys, go once a week minimum. 

    Sometimes we even get brave enough to go as a family.  Its usually late - like right before dark - when we go because we are trying to sneak in a few holes before it's too late but after other people have finished so we don't disturb them.  And the only way to describe us when we're there - The Clampets Come to the Country Club.  Seriously.  There are three full golf bags and five people (two of which are quite large) on one golf cart.  We look ridiculous, we are loud, and we sit our baby in the wire basket on the back.  The boys stand hanging off the side and when we drive up to retrieve wayward golf balls, they jump off and roll commando style to get them.  We are the Clampets.  We don't belong at the country club.  But we go anyway.

    Just this past Friday we went, in fact.  And on this particular Friday, we were even more "Clampety" than usual.

    Picture it........................

    There we were, at the first hole, dividing into teams for a three hole scramble.  Aaron and Turnanator (bc he is the weaker playing child at this point), and Super-G and myself (bc I am the weaker playing human amongst the entire population of earthlings at this point.  seriously.  golf is not for the large chested.  it is impossible for me to keep my arms together and near my body.  it's just not happening sports fans) were facing off at the first tee.  Of course Aaron hit from the white tees, or is it the blue tees?  I'm not sure, just whichever set is farthest away. Then we drove the cart down the hill a bit (please remember the "downhill" component of this story.  it's critical) to the red tees where the boys and I would hit.  Turnanator hit first and promptly knocked one into the pond right in front of us. (just like Aaron did on his first attempt.  also, please remember the "pond".  also critical)  Then it was Super-G's turn.  His daddy was giving him some instructions and I was standing there watching because I was next.

    I know what y'all are thinking at this point......."where's Destruct-o-girl?".  Well that is a fantastic question because at the very second we were focused on our drives, she became focused on driving.  The golf cart.  Down the hill.  Straight towards the pond.  As many of you know, the parking break on a golf cart is on the top corner of the brake pedal itself and is released when the gas pedal is pushed.  Well she waited until no one was looking to push that gas and take off.  Fortunately Turnanator was there at the cart putting up his club so he saw it all happen and screamed for our attention.  Unfortunately he decided to try and stop her himself by getting in front of the golf cart and pushing.  He weights 50ish pounds.  It did not work. 

    So one second we're all casually whacking golf balls around, and the next second Turnanator is screaming "NO D, NO D!!!".  We turn to see her barreling down the hill on the golf cart straight towards the pond while her brother is sprinting as fast as he can backwards to keep from getting squashed flat.  I scream at Aaron because I know there is not a chance under the sun that I will catch them, then I start screaming at my precious little son to get out of the way.  Of course that was easier for me to say than for him to do!  So Aaron takes off running and literally dives into the cart, basically pushing the brake with his hand until he can get it stopped.  Luckily he got it stopped before anyone got pancaked or drowned.  Then I burst out into gut-bustin' laughter because that is apparently the reaction my body goes into when I get freaked out that family members are going to get seriously injured and then they don't.  It's the same thing I did when homeboy fell out of the attic.  He was dangling by his elbows and I couldn't stand up from laughing long enough to help him get down.  It's a problem.  I'm addressing it with professionals soon.  Then we proceeded to knock four more golf balls into the pond, load back up on the cart and head to the next hole like nothing ever happened. 


    I'm still not sure we ever figured out who won the scramble..............................

*cue banjo music

 
1.  My kids are goofy.

2.  Your's probably are too.

3.  But this is my blog so if you are here then you are probably going to see a bunch of stuff about mine.  Sorry. 

4.  I have mentioned before on here that my daughter just cannot talk very clearly.  Like - at all.  Bless her little heart.  But as her mother I am able to decipher more of what she says than most people.  As her mother, I also know that there are several words that she just will not attempt for some reason - her name being one of them.  I have no idea why, but she refuses to say it.  It's a perfectly regular type name (well sort of) that other little kids are capable of saying, but she REFUSES to even try.  So it has become sort of an amusing thing for us lately to see what she answers when we ask her what her name is.  She changes the answer every so often, but for the past month her name has been...........wait for it............................

           Doctor Cassie Tiger

Yep, you heard that right folks.  I am the proud mother of one Doctor Cassie Tiger.  Of course, it's pronounced more like "Dodder Sassy Shiger"  but I speak Destruct-o-girl so I know what she's saying.  You have no idea just how fun it is to try and explain that to strangers who are trying to be polite and talk to the cute girl with the crazy hair in the checkout line at the Walmart store.

"What's your name cute girl/hon/little sweety/other cute baby girl colloquialism?".  "Dodder Sassy Shiger" (proud grin). 
(strange look)
(then I tell them what her real name is and get an even stranger look a lot of times)

Then it really gets interesting when they ask her how old she is and her reply is always "two five seven five".

I promise, one day I'll send her to preschool where maybe she can work all of this out. 

5.  Every week my son has to write a sentence for each of his 10 spelling words in his spelling notebook.  Every week my son forgets to bring his spelling notebook home and I want to beat him with a large stick.  Today when he finished up and checked over his work, I couldn't help but notice the sentence for number 6 "serve". 

          "My mom won't serve me."

Funny.  Because now I'm completely unsure of what I've been doing with myself for the past seven and a half years. 

6.  Sunni is not actually a child, but might as well be because I feed her, clean up after her, and yell at her too.  So I am soliciting advice from all of you dog lovers out there for my other baby.  She is an australian shepherd and is smart and cute and not very big yet, but boy does she wear a family out.  She has tons of energy (which we thought we were prepared for) and chews to oblivion things that I didn't even know we owned (which I can live with).  But the worst of all offenses is that she attacks our kids with love.  She's so sweet to them and lets my girl pull on her ears and sit on her and whack her in the nose for no reason, but she just jumps all over the kids.  Especially the baby.  Aaron and I have broken her from jumping on us, but I can't seem to figure out how to stop her from jumping on them if I'm not standing right beside them.  It makes playing in the back yard torture.  What do I do?!  Help!  Advice?!  New home?! (ok, kidding.    .........I think)

7.  It's hard to believe during this cool spell (that's not a thing you can say a lot in April in Mississippi), but earlier in March it was warm enough outside to play in the sprinklers.  I even saw pics on facebook of people swimming.  Apparently their pools are heated because mine will still be freezing on Memorial Day, if the past three years have been any prediction.  Fat people in skirted swimsuits and blue lips.  It's a holiday tradition. 
     Anyhow, I still have a completely blank mantle over my fireplace ever since Christmas and I've been waiting on something to inspire me, so the other day I decided to snap some pics of my kids in the sprinkler.  I thought they turned out so well that I printed them out in the small poster size, mounted them on some canvass I had and sat them on my mantle waiting to have a decorative vision.  They are no professional shots are anything, but they are natural.  Just the way I want to remember them today.
 
    Please let me start with a sincere thank you for all of your kind comments about yesterday's post.  I had comments here and on facebook, and I even received several text messages about it from friends who have been there.  Which I suspect as parents, most of us have at one time or another.  It's a tough plight in life to be the oldest child, because as their parents, we are just figuring it out as we go.  Learning all the hard lessons for the first time.  And doing our best.  So from the bottom of my heart, thanks for being so sweet as I use this blog to let y'all in on a little bit of our journey.

    That being said and gotten out of the way - today is a special day.  It marks the anniversary, 34 years ago, that one of the greatest people on Earth was born.  He's tall, he's smoking red hot, he's smart, he's athletic, he always takes out the trash and does all the yard work, he stayed after Charity Dinner and helped all of us ladies clean up without being asked, he can always tell when I'm on the verge and is a pro at diffusing my meltdowns, he is currently slightly obsessed with golf, he has stinky feet, he leaves his clothes all over the place, he loves me, he loves God and wants our kids to as well, he works very hard, and did I mention he is smoking red hot?

      Happy Birthday Aaron!  We love you so so so much!

    And in honor of his birthday today, I thought I would do something a little different.  There are several recent pictures of him on here already so I thought I would take today to show you some baby pictures.  And clear up once and for all who our kids look like.  Because even though I don't really believe my kids look much like one another, they ALL look like their daddy.  Prepare for your mind to be blown.

    Here, my friends, is the proof.


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Little Aaron
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Little Super-G
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Little Aaron
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Little Turnanator
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Baby Aaron
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Baby Destruct-o-girl
    Do you see what I'm saying to you?  Do you?  At least there is no doubt who's my baby daddy.  And since they all look like him, I guess it's a good thing he's smoking red hot :-)

Happy Birthday Aaron,
the luckiest girl alive
 
    First and foremost, I need to start out this post with a big, huge shout-out to my dear friend Jenn, who texted me a few weeks ago and said, "can I redo your blog for you?".  Ummmm.......yeah!  Redoing the look of my blog and adding some buttons and things to make me look all cool and professional and awesome, is something I've been wanting to do for a while now.  I had actually talked to another friend about doing it at some point and even started a Pinterest board about it.  So when she just called me up about it, I knew I couldn't resist her skills and cute ideas.  Plus she and I have a special kind of friendship and love that I can't really describe, but we can go from eating dinner together five nights a week to moving far apart and never talking to two hour phone conversations with ease.  That's love.  And I know she loves me and gets me because when I told her I wanted it to look "southernish, but not country, with some cute and a touch of modern, with colors that just go", she came up with this new look.  And I love it!  So shout out to Jenn for being awesome. She has always got projects and things going on, and now she has a wedding blog that has really taken off like a shot that I would love to talk more about on here some time.  But I'm going to save that for another day when I have time to figure out things like "inserting links" and other such immensely difficult computer functions.  Seriously.  Sad is the only way to describe me. 

    I also wanted to let you know that I now have buttons for you to follow me on pinterest (the "p" button on the right if you have a pinterest account) and I am finally coming around to the twitter world.  I'm brand new and I have two followers and I follow 3 people so I am not exactly blowing it up or anything yet.  But if you want to follow me through the painful process of me figuring out yet another form of social media, then please feel free to click the "t" button over there on the right.  I'm sure most of you already knew what those buttons were - before I did - but you have to remember that my mother reads this and she is no more technically advanced than her oldest daughter.  Finally, I finally have a badge.  Feel free to grab it and put it on your blog to say that you follow me, and I would love to do the same for you.  Just as soon as someone explains to me how.  And by the way, there are several of you that have signed up to receive emails whenever I post a new blog, but some of you never did verify it in your email so I don't believe you are getting them.  If you are one of those people and you actually want to get the email, please just leave a comment or shoot me a message and we'll work it out.  If this does not apply to you or you don't want to get the email any more, I can't really say that I blame you most days.  I'm just going to come to terms with the fact that you don't need me in your life at that level and I'm going to move on after I have one medium sized cry about it.  It's really ok, I just like to have your info so I can stalk you better.  It's something that makes me feel good about myself.

    Since today's post is pretty much all about the new look of the blog and technical type stuff, I thought I would throw in just a quick story for entertainment and to make you feel good the next time you and your family go out of town for the weekend.

    There once was a family that went out of town for the weekend to a large church convention in a big city at a nice hotel.  This family checked into their hotel room and had been in it for approximately twenty minutes when a security guard knocked on the door to inform the family that there had been a noise complaint about them.  Later that evening, the second oldest child in the family locked the door to the bathroom in their hotel room and shut it.  From the outside.  The mother tried to unlock the door with a metal fingernail file, but to no avail.  Men from the maintenance department had to come up to unlock the bathroom door.  The next morning, the oldest child in the family locked the bathroom door in the hotel room and shut it.  From the outside.   Men from the maintenance department had to come up to unlock the bathroom door.  Again.  The mother then informed everyone in the family, in a rather forceful tone of voice, that the next person who touched the lock on the bathroom door was going to have a very unpleasant conversation with the wooden spoon in her purse.  Then over the span of two days, the mother of the family lost three separate room keys on three separate occasions.  Then the small daughter of the family waited until they were all out to eat at a restaurant far away from the hotel, with no diaper bag whatsoever, to remove her diaper and throw it on the floor and walk around the dining area of said restaurant with her jeans pulled to her ankles and her bare bottom shining because that was the day she decided she wanted to use the potty like a big girl.  That didn't exactly work out for the girl and her parents as well as it could have.  The family still had a nice time over the weekend, though.  And mainly what all of this proves is just that ..............................................

We don't get out much. 
 
You know the thing about babies is that they always start out so tiny.......
But in no time they get all attitudnal with their new personalities........................
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Whachu talkin' bout Willis?
Soon they are sneaky..............
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Cupcake? What cupcake? I haven't eaten any cupcake.
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I don't know why you keep accusing me. I have not been in the markers!
And you know all kids go through phases........................
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The sad dragon phase was definitely the worst
Before long they are doing grown up things with ease................
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Hey Mama, look at me! Hey Daddy, watch this!
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Do.Not. kiss me in front of everybody!
They mature...............................
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Can I hold her and take a picture please?
But sometimes the attitude still shows through.............................
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If you don't stop taking photos of me right this second and wipe this mess off my face, I'm going to cut you. Seriously. I do not kid.
You know the thing about babies?  One day they are brand new and then just a few more days and they are celebrating their sixth birthday.   And while all that individual stuff is going on that seems to last forever (like the colic and the sad dragon), it turns out it all adds up to six of the quickest and most wonderful years of your life.  Funny how that happens.
Son, you are the most amazing little creature with your handsome looks, and funny quirks, and hat poking up off the top of your head.  You're so smart and so good and so loving, and you are so much like your daddy in so many ways.  You are the best surprise that could have ever happened to me and I love your little face off.  Thanks for making the past six years wonderful. 

Happy Birthday Turnanator!
 
    I'm sorry friends, but I've been suffering from a severe case of writer's block lately.  Well, writer's block and the stomach virus, but there are so few details of that situation you would want to know about that I'm am choosing to leave it to the imagination.  Let's just say that it was me and the three kids here because poor husband is doing some fairly serious, can't miss, type audits at work right now, and since that's what pays the bills and all - my girl basically had free range of the house for a whole day.  And I had to call poison control.  Again.  We are literally on file.  Literally.  They can now pull her up using my phone number.  For serious.  This time it was a fairly large quantity of children's ibuprofin that I swear to you was closed.  With the child proof cap.  Honestly she is a Houdini.   

    So in a week I have only written once, and I was so disappointed in it's content that I didn't even link it to facebook because I thought it was lame-o.  If you haven't read it, don't waste your time.  Here are the cliff notes.  I stay up too late at night and see a lot of commercials for completely ridiculous things. Destruct-o-girl was sick all weekend, I don't give medicine for fever because I am evil, I took her to the movies while sick with no medicine because I thought she would actually be still, she vomitted all over creation.  Do you see how that could make for a lame story?

    But tonight my friends, I am actually kind of excited about this post.  "Why Cassie?"  you might ask.  Well, it is because I feel as if it is my duty in life to make you feel better about all of your "fails".  Those times you plan with the best intentions but they go all haywire.  Take Christmas card photos for example.  Everyone wants a fabulous picture of their cute little family to show how happy and lovely you are.  Problem is - we all know the truth.  Christmas card pics are awful no matter how you slice it.  Usually everyone is dressed "matchy" and in something that makes at least on person itch, the sun is always in someone's eyes, and heaven knows there is no way you are getting everyone to look forward at the same time.  Our family, in fact, attempted to take a card worthy photo, not once, not twice, but on three different occasions.  And while you are about to see three different and adorable sets of coordinating outfits on my weirdo, fantastic offspring, please know that my facebook status after round two read a little something like this -

        So tonight I attempted to take a Christmas card photo of my kids. Epic fail. It ended with me screaming, all three kids crying, and D trying to shove her whole head into a sandwich sized ziplock bag just to prove to me how mad she was - if that tells you anything about how awful it went
ROUND 1
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At this point the kids had already done card photos with Aaron's parents with all 10 grandkids, ages 9 and under (you can only imagine what a trick that is) and then pics with Aaron's grandfather. So by now Turnanator is mad that we won't let him go inside to play video games and take that heinous (to him) sweater vest off, and Destruct-o-girl has, unbeknownst to us at the time, adopted her new go-to monkey face for all photos.
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And now we discover the monkey face. Honestly if Aaron would have been looking up at all, this would have been our Christmas card pic this year because I feel like this is the most accurate depiction of our family I have ever seen. That and because I think I look naturally fabulous for a chunky girl in this shot. I'm just sayin'.
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And now we've reached critical mass. Even though three of us looked good, the two smallest were doneski. Not happening. Ova.
ROUND 2
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Just because someone said it was a great idea on pinterest, does not make it a good idea for you. Especially if you have no idea how to use your camera except on auto.
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"Oh I know kids! Let's go outside at 8 o'clock at night when your daddy is still not home to help and while it is no more than 38 degrees Farenheit and you have no jackets on to take a picture standing in the middle of this giant wreath that you can barely hold up! It will be great"
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"Oh I know kids! I'll change the setting of my camera from auto to something else and see what happens! My my Turnanator, what a large nose you seem to have all of a sudden."
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This is about 59 photos in and 37 seconds before the tears and sandwich bag incident. At this point we were frozen solid.
ROUND 3
This is the final, and most successful round of pictures - mostly because we chose a better time and went back to everyone's favorite, the big swing.  But I do feel that I need to be completely honest about the situation.  Before we ever got started, I was going to give the kids a big push so Aaron could take some fun shots and...................................
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I pulled it back too far in the air and dumped my girl face first on the ground.
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Luckily she took it well.
But finally, FINALLY we got a half decent shot and decided to stop while we were ahead.  No one had tried to suffocate themselves yet that day.  So even though many of you will get this in the mail some time between now and Christmas (probably a whole day or two beforehand) and even though I cropped and edited it and now Super G has a weird shadow on his leg that kind of makes it look like he wet his pants (I promise he did not.  I would have blogged about it.), here it is in all of it's glory. 
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Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from our family to yours!! (and that my friends is the best we could do)
 
1. This was a busy week that finished off with Wish Tree on Thursday and Friday.  Remember when I asked you all to consider adopting an angel from the Wish Tree this year?  Well thanks so much to all of you that did because this year was another great success.  We were able to help right at 260 kids thanks to a lot of work from the coordinator (Emily who did a great job), a lot of hours put in by JA members who shopped organized and sorted, and so very many wonderful donations from some very blessed people who were willing to share their blessings to make Christmas great for a child who may have gone without this year.  Thank you to everyone for such a special work.

2.  I just saw a commercial for a camera that you can watch via your ipad or iphone.  Looks like a great idea when you use it like shown for a baby monitor.  But the guy who is making out with the girl and is checking behind her back to look at his dog on his phone.  Fail.  Really?!  Who would do that?!

3.  The Forever Lazy.  If you haven't seen the commercial for this, please go look it up online now.  Then see the group of grow men wearing it and imagine the special man in your life wearing this tailgating at a game of your favorite SEC team.  I mean please.  Be serious with me.  Who is buying this stuff?

3.  My girl has been sick since Friday.  Like fever and snot and coughing.  Like 103 temperatures.  And send me all the hate mail you want - I'm not much of a medicine giver for fever.  I learned all about it in college with my useless microbiology degree and all, and have since forgotten that information and replaced it with lyrics to Veggie Tales songs and the names of every single Disney character.  But from what I recall, the gyst of fever is to rush blood around your body so a maximum number of white blood cells can get to the disease and kill it faster.  God invented it.  It must be good somehow.  Now I know that super high fever is bad and can cause lots of bad stuff, and I have a nurse practicioner friend that gives her kids meds at 101 to be safe.  But I've also got a doctor friend who didn't do meds for fever on his kids until 104.  So I have decided to fall somewhere in the middle based on how the little nuggets seem to be handling it.  If they are sleeping it off and letting those little white blood cells do their thing, I let it go.  If they are laying there moaning pitifully, drugs it is.  Anyway, this fever has gone on for 3 days now, but last night it seemed way down.  Down enough that she was still being still but eating and drinking and talking a bunch.  So what did we do?  Took her to the movies to see The Muppets and infest all the nice people at the movie theater.  We had promised it earlier and Aaron was going to take the boys, but she seemed better and because I am mother of the year, we took her too.  We were about 30 minutes into the movie when she started the whole crazy loud moaning thing.  I knew what that meant.  So I took off running with her to the bathroom and made it - about 2 seconds too late.  So I had to go find an employee to tell that we had almost made the garbage and offer to clean it up.  And you know what she said, "it's ok.  you wouldn't believe how often I have to clean up vomit."  Ummm........ew.  How many other awful mothers are there?!  And suddenly I'm not interested in going to the movies ever again.
 

Don't be like me,
Cassie
 
1.  Today my girl found our "Elf on the Shelf" book and I promptly took it away because I like it the way it is - with the pages intact and all.  She really wanted it back and kept asking and asking and asking for it in Destruct-o-girl speak "blablablagobbledygookyaddayadda book"  "goobledygoobledygoobla book" "malamalamawhadda book".  However, I was pretty much just ignoring her and occasionally saying "no"  "no you can't have it"  "why don't you go play with your toys?"  "go get mama a cookie".  So as I sat on the floor working on our Christmas cards she walks over, grabs my face in both of her hands, puts her nose right against mine, and says "isen ew me. aughnt da book!" (that's destruct-o-girl for "listen to me.  I want the book!")  And can I just say that it was about the cutest thing I've ever seen in my life?!  Of course I still didn't give her the book, but I laughed, gave her a million kisses and distracted her with oreos.

2.  Is speech therapy available for just-turned-two year olds?  For reals though.......

3.  Oh special edition oreos, why must thou be dipped in white almond bark ever so perfectly and why must thou also be placed on the end cap of the aisle wherest I shalt see and purchase thee for my consumption every time I see you during this the holiday season?

4.  Have you ever had a blood vessel burst (explode) in your eye before?  I can't say that I have, until this week.  Sunday, there was one.  Monday, the whole top of my eye - disgusting.  I now look like a mummy on one side.  It is ewww. Just by freak coincidence it turns out I have an eye doctor appointment next Tuesday anyway (I'm not kidding about the freakiness of it.  My last vision check up was in college, 13 years ago, and I just happened to decide to make the appointment last week.  Weird.  DODOdodoDODOdodo) so I'm just going to wait to talk to him about it.  At first I freaked about the grodiness of it all, but then after I googled it, it seems that I am not in fact going blind today.  If you have intimate knowledge of the eyeball, however, and believe otherwise, please contact me at your quickest convenience because that's the kind of thing I really would like to know.  Thanks.  I hate to leave my entire life hanging in the balance of google.

5.  Isn't it funny how I have all the right in the world to stop getting on facebook instead of being annoyed with peoples statuses (stati?), and yet I don't stop.  In fact, I don't stop at all - I just stalk more - and complain the whole time about others' statuses.  For instance, I don't need a play by play of your day if you aren't doing anything special or out of the ordinary.  I'm having my own day of errands and work to do thanks.  I don't care that much about your workout unless it is something spectacular and then I only need to know about it once.  And to repeat myself from an earlier post.  You are not the only person in the world getting action so please for the love of all things polite, stop talking about it to your 800 closest friends.  Thankyoueversomuch.  But really, it's your status and your internet page so actually you can post whatever you want.  That's why they make a hide button.  (I would unfriend you but then I couldn't stalk you when I want to)

6. Tonight we babysat for some friends and the little guy will be one this month.  He is adorable and BUSY.  Plus he's the first kid at his quiet, polite house so I'm sure he had no idea what to do here at Casa de Nuttso.  We had a great time with him, but isn't it funny how when you have kids, you always think of the youngest one as a baby?  Then when an actual baby comes over it blows your mind that your kid is so big.  No?  Just me huh?

7.  Have you ever had that moment where you realize that the bottle of body wash you gave your boys weeks ago to take a shower with is actually lotion?  Which means your boys haven't actually bathed with soap in upwards of three weeks?  Me neither.

8.  Have you ever looked down to realize you are typing at 3 a.m. and then stopped on #8 of a list?
 
    Tonight I was going to go to bed at a decent hour.  I really was.  I had already suffered a mild come apart this evening due to some circumstances involving some turkey feather Christmas ornaments, a jug of V-8 juice, and a bathtub.  Typical Wednesday.  So I was hard-core dedicated to the idea of going to sleep early.  Until I realized that everyone in this house was already asleep and I really wanted to blog.  So that's what I'm doing - except I started working on this joker two hours ago.  I was going to put a whole bunch of photos on here for your viewing pleasure, but because I have issues with focusing on a task, as soon as I started going through the photos on my camera I found myself obsessed with deleting pictures off of my memory card.  The thing that I love about our camera (it's an SLR which means it's digital but clicks really fast) is that it's so quick at taking pictures.  The thing I hate about it is that we go outside to take a couple of family photos, and it clicks so fast that before I know it I have 37 different shots of the same pose to sort through and delete.  And while I love all the choices, it fills the card up with 1,000 pics extra fast. (at least for someone like me who never downloads anything)

    I'm not done deleting yet but my eyes are starting to cross and I'm scared they are going to stick that way so I just quit.  And of course I didn't even get to the pictures that I wanted to put on here, so instead I thought I would share these three that I thought were funny.  At least to me.  Which is not saying much.  I still chuckle occasionally at body function humor.  
One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just doesn't belong.  Can you guess which thing is not like the other - Before I finish my song?
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that's one freaky little photo creeper
Just so you know, Turnantor may look just like his daddy and may act a lot like his daddy, but there is one trait that he definitely, most definitely got from me.
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Eww. Can I please stop touching this disgusting bunny rabbit? What if it jumps on me?! I don't like this!!!! Animals wig me out!!
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You know what mama? I don't really care if the whole rest of my kindergarten is inside the petting zoo playing with goats, chickens, and bunnies. I'm good, right here on this bench where nothing can lick me.
 
    Our yard is lovely.  Well....to me at least.  It's not manicured and trimmed with big beds and pretty flowers and there is not the perfect, squishy carpet grass (that's what I used to call it when I was a kid), but it totally covered in trees (for a yard in a neighborhood at least).  I mean, there are a lot of trees.  Which means at this time of year - the leaves.  Eye yeye yeye the leaves!  They are everywhere!  They are a foot thick and covering every surface.  My garage is buried in leaves, my walkway is buried in leaves, my back doorstep is buried in leaves.  And to tell you the truth, there is no reason to do anything about it at this point because in 12.7 seconds the wind will blow and it will look just the same all over again.  But we have some neighbors who, bless their hearts, are rueing the day we ever moved in next door.  They are nice neighbors.  The wife is very friendly and the husband delivered bell peppers from their garden to the whole neighborhood this summer, but they are, for lack of a better steryotypial judgement, OCD a little bit.   At least they look that way when I am silently judging them from my yard.  Their house took a longer than usual time to build because they wanted it perfect and more reinforced than a normal house.  The yard is perfect, the flowers are perfect, the garden is perfect.  There is never a stick that fell down from a tree on the ground longer than a few hours.  And honestly, I hope you don't think I am talking about them negatively - I am just saying that if they are daylight then we are dark.  Black and white.  Could not be more different from one another.  We have toys in the yard.  For the past two seasons our garden has been waist high in weeds.   It's stick-a-palooza out there man.  We are the poster children for deferred maintenance.  And while our two acre yard is a foot deep in leaves, their's is spotless.  I was getting out of my car Sunday afternoon to find him mowing and mulching between the trees in the woods beside their house.  The woods people.  He was mowing the woods.  But anyhoos, my point is, our poor neighbors probably hate our guts because we don't rake our leaves and they all blow on to their perfectly and obsessively manicured yard right next door - causing them to have to mow and mulch obsessively.  In the woods no less.  Dude - he was mowing the woods.

    So because we are yard lame-os who ruin our neighbor's lives with our leaves, we decided to do something about it this weekend.

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We hired this wonderful girl Leslie to rake the whole yard.
    SIKE!!!!!!!!!!!!  We piled them up and jumped in them, throwing caution to the wind and leaving sticks and toys laying around everywhere.

   (warning - the following are photos of my super cute family unit plus my daddy who came for a visit and some of our sweet college kids who stopped by because they moved away and miss us.  If you do not want to see that, then you should move along)
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First we moved the trampoline over to the giant pile and the boys jumped big time.
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But if you know my daddy at all then you know he was terribly nervous that someone was going to get hurt. Then when Turnanator did a cannonball and hit his rear hard on the ground, we listened and moved the trampoline.
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"Sheeeeese" (that's baby for cheese) p.s. - what is up with that kid's hair?
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Didn't take long at our house before a football game broke out. I was recruited to play, but then I was quickly kicked off the team for repeatedly complaining about being improperly brazziered and repeatedly forgetting if I was on offense or defense.
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I am totally going to let you believe that my sweet angel boy caught that pass and scored a touchdown.
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Here is Destruct-o-girl having a large time in the swing because Wo'in (Robbin) was being awesome and pushing her really really high. Wheeeeeeeeeeee! (p.p.s. this was when the hairbow was still able to be located and not buried under a pile of leaves. and that is eczema on the cutie face. it's a right of passage in our family. if you are one of Aaron's kids then you have to have a couple of righteous bouts with the stuff before you can grow up. it will go away one day. I hope.
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Sitting in the leaves with Grandaddy. Priceless.
    Now brace yourselves for what you are about to see, but at first we thought we just had a pile of leaves in our yard.  Turns out there was a monster.  A terrible, awful, scary, leaf monster.  It was heinous.
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Oh wait - maybe I mean it was handsome. Yeah......I definitely mean it was handsome.