Happiness is spilling over this summer.

31 July 2008 | 9 Comments

There have been several new babies, raises, new jobs, new houses, old houses getting new renovations, children learning new things, showers, and all kinds of other little happinesses spilling over this summer. I feel sometimes like I am MORE happy for the happiness of my friends than I am for my own little triumphs. It is just so incredible to see amazing women who work hard, take control of their lives, and do for others constantly, getting the things they want in their lives. Happiness and celebration begets more happiness and celebration and if this summer is any indication... there is a lot of it out there. Mostly, I am so thankful and happy for the following:

  1. Stace is a mommy. A long overdue, lovely, wonderful mommy. I know she is enjoying every second with Gavin. I cannot wait to meet him.
  2. Hott cop is going to be just that. OFFICER W is going to be loose on the streets soon. My husband is having handcuff fantasies already. I (probably Lisa too!) am having fantasies about getting out of speeding tickets. I am so incredibly proud of her for sticking it out, busting her butt working out, and most of all for staying positive(ish) and knowing she can do this.
  3. Steph is MOVING TO CHICAGO. She is giving her dream job a try while her non-dream killing hubby holds down the fort here in T-town. (You rock J!) We are all going to miss her terribly terribly terribly much, but we're secretly excitedly planning how many times we can visit her.
  4. Jen, you know you'll be added to this list as soon as you hear back about your interview! Bling or not, you rock and you deserve this!

Sometimes it is the little things that mean the most, but lately it has been the big HUGE life changing things that need to be acknowledged.

Consuming my days as of late.

30 July 2008 | 3 Comments

A bunch of insane teenage girls. The summer competition season is in full force, so I've been crazy busy. On a positive note, they are doing well.... *cough*aftertotallyscrewingupandlosingtheircool*cough*

Bottle Non Grata

25 July 2008 | 1 Comments

The bottle is becoming extinct in our house as of today. Ummm... why the hell didn't you mommies out there tell me they are supposed to be bottle free by 15 months? His pediatrician said just that, so off the bottle he is. Lordy, no one tells you this shit, where is my manual?? I thought we were doing well, having gotten all weaned last month and what not. (YAY for Mama being able to drink again!) This morning, we just skipped it for some water instead and he conked out at his midday nap bottle free too. Keep your fingers crossed that tonight goes well!

Dearest Self,

When you purchase candy in advance of YKW's BIRTHDAY EXTRAVAGANZA, which I can't share details on just yet because the invites are not going out until next week, it is not meant for YOUR consumption. I mean, yes you were being a smart shopper when you bought it on sale, but it doesn't save you a dime if you pilfer a dud or two (or 47) each time you pass them in the kitchen and you have to end up buying more boxes. Also, please note that YKW can not pass up an open box of chocolate coated caramel gooeyness, so JUST DON'T OPEN THE BOX. Also note that even though the box says 35% less fat, it does not mean you should eat 35% more since "those don't count."


Incidentally, the party is going to be a doozy and I can't wait to spill the duds on all the details.

For you, my love.

22 July 2008 | 2 Comments

{image courtesy of accordion guy via AT Unplugged}
And for the record, Accordion Guy seems to be one of your people, so you should check out his blog here.

Bloggity Blahs

21 July 2008 | 0 Comments
I haven't felt too terribly inspired. Couple that with the 8 million things we've had going on and I owe y'all an apology for having a boring read as of late. I promise to be more fun soon.

More family reunion fun.

I didn't take nearly as many photos as I should have. I am anxiously awaiting my Uncle Jim's spectacular pics. Hizzle, he was my unprofessional dancing/drunk photographer at the wedding. He he he.
It occurred to me that most of us haven't been together since my great grandma's funeral in 1994. Oh sure, we've seen some of the extended family since then, but that was the last time such a huge chunk of us have been together. She would have loved that we got together to celebrate UJ's 70th birthday. She got the biggest kick out of the crazy cast of characters that she created.

What is in a wordle?

{click here to jump to wordle}

You continue to amaze me daily Finnegan.

Dear G Dubbya.

19 July 2008 | 0 Comments
My Great Uncle Harold said you were the worst president he has ever known. And he started voting many moons ago when Roosevelt was in office. That is a whole helluva lot of presidents to be worse than.

This, and other fun family reunion stories to come. For now, just a pic of the oldies but goodies.

Sauder Village in pictures

16 July 2008 | 0 Comments
As promised, here are the pictures from our Sauder Village adventure. It's definitely an all day affair, I can't believe how much has been added to it since I was a child. We were there for probably 4-5 hours and didn't hit half of it. Luckily, we now have a membership so we can go back and visit again soon.

{the herb shop}
{Aunt J looking all too comfortable in the school house}
{the boys playing with old fashioned toys}

{the girls listening intently}

{Uncle Hat teaching Finn how to milk a cow}

Dinner was a HUGE success

and nary a photo in sight. I was too busy entertaining and eating to snap pics, but everything was awesome.

The Menu (perfect for summer!)
  • orzo pasta salad (dried cherries, toasted pine nuts, fresh basil, & feta)
  • apricot couscous (dried apricots, cumin, cinnamon, toasted almonds, & green onion)
  • pork tenderloin (marinated in soy, olive oil, sugar, fresh ginger, & minced garlic)
  • romaine & spinach salad (nectarines, green apple, spicy toasted pecans, & Mara's dressing)
  • grilled veggie pasta (fresh herbs, zucchini, yellow squash, asparagus, onions, garlic, red & orange peppers)
  • fruit salad (with lime vanilla simple syrup)
  • bread (sourdough, cheese bread, & french)
I took a chance with the couscous and it was so good. I've never made it & I was shocked how simple it is!

May the insanity ensue.

15 July 2008 | 4 Comments
A big group of the fam arrived yesterday. And we've been having fun ever since. Today we're heading here... I haven't been in probably 10 years and I am so excited. It is the site of many fun childhood adventures and they've continued to add to it throughout the years. I'll maybe have pictures and a post this evening as well as the post about the Polish fest from Sunday. If I don't get to it today, I will this week... in between family dinners, cheer practice, and catching fireflies in Meme's backyard.

Sandy has done it again!

Sandy at 4 Reluctant Entertainers is having another of her incredible giveaways! This one is a canning package, which would have come in very handy during the great jam adventure earlier this year. Hop on over there and enter to win!

Reasons why I'm going to jail.

13 July 2008 | 5 Comments

My husband is a butt head. We were talking about our bed and the pop of color and well, he doesn't care. He gets to wallow in our bedroom goodness without a freaking care in the world that I have been looking for a pop of color for five months. Seriously. He loves the pop of color, he just doesn't want to think about WHY he loves the it. He just wants to see the damn forest. While I'm looking at all of the individual trees.

Tonight, after telling him that I was going to have to go to jail for killing my husband, he told me I need to go to the Jackie Lynn (last name) School of Anger Management. By the way, have I mentioned you need to check out Kung Fu Girl? Anyway, Jackie has one little incident at a baseball game and D won't let her live it down. Well, that and that little "pick on the biggest guy in the bar thing" that I wrote about here.

He stands over my shoulder reading "these mysteries, truths, and outright lies" about him. All the while laughing because he belittled my mad decor skillz AND my best friend all in one fell swoop! He wonders why I am outraged! So let me spell it out for you my love...

Rat Bastard,

Let's discuss decor shall we? When I met you, you were living in a 1970s fully "furnished" apartment. I don't even want to think about all of the naked college ass that had sat on that hideous brown plaid couch before you. Not to mention the pullout couch from the dog lady's parents' basement. Oh and the ONE set of non matching sheets you had really impressed the ladies. That, coupled with the towels that had your last name written on them from boot camp... it's a wonder you weren't fighting them off with sticks. You know, the threadbaren white scratchy ones? Better known now as "car washing" towels.

If you continue to not care and therefore insult my skillz, I can make a call and get you back there in a second. In fact, your parents are STILL bitching about you having boxes of shit from your apartment in their garage. You can be all set in minutes. Oh, and I'm totally telling your mom that we had premarital sex right before they arrived to move you out.

Love, The Pop of Color Girl

PS. Jackie, I'm thinking if he came up with the phrase J.L.P.S.O.A.M. I'd be willing to bet that means a crush has been had on you too.

In case anyone was wondering...

11 July 2008 | 2 Comments

{image courtesy of opi.com}

I went with KEYS TO MY KARMA on my toes. Jackie, I chose soley based upon the name. I really wanted to hit up the I'm India Mood for Love which was a hot pink, but the karma pulled me in.

And in other in case anyone was wondering news... my girls are doing AMAZING this year. I mean, this is the best squad I have worked with in a long time. They're a relatively young group since we had a sizeable group of seniors last year. They are nice, enthusiastic, hard working, and bring all kinds of cheerleading goodness to the table. There isn't a doubt in my mind that they have what it takes to win the LCF competition. And by win, I mean wipe the floor with their competition. I was amazed at their routine after 3 hours of practice. Amazed. And you know what? As a coach, that is a fantastic feeling.

T-Minus 11 HOURS.

10 July 2008 | 3 Comments
Until SPA DAY commences. I need this. Really. Really. REEEEally need this.

YKW is home safe and sound from his business trip. Turns out, he really WAS in St. Louis and not in Memphis rescuing Sarah.

Side note: Sarah, I think that this boy has REALLY poor judgement. Anyone that actually prefers something out of a can should be shot. There, I said it. Take his ass out back and put him out of his misery, Old Yeller style. Do it for the good of the NORTH. I think I am safe saying that Jackie would back me up here.

So back to my adventuring while D was gone. I found the BEST things at TJ Maxx (for the Minimum!) and I only spent $58 of YKW's money. I am giving you a little sneak peek...

By the way, if you could... sneek in a little visit to my friend Emily's blog and read her thankful list. And then leave me a comment about what YOU are thankful for.

YKW, I am not sure I need you anymore.

I *think* I might be a better single mom than a wife. While you were gone on your business trip:

  1. Your child slept until 8 AM. Really. I am not kidding.

  2. Yesterday, I finally found the POP of color we needed on our bed that I have been searching for since like February. I know this seems a little thing, but it has been vexing for months!

So if you could... just keep that little paycheck thing coming. You know, so we can live. Hmmmm, maybe stop by for some sex a few times a week? Oh, and you'll have to come over on Monday evenings to take the garbage out. And maybe be here for big emergencies, like water in the basement? And you'll have to stop by to see Finn daily of course. Well, maybe it'll be easier if you just stick around. Like for the next 50 years or so?

My husband is a little in love with some of my friends.

09 July 2008 | 10 Comments
You Know Who (YKW) is a little in love with some of my friends. OUTRAGEOUS!!! you say? Not so much. He mostly loves them because well, I pick some funny ass, beautiful, lovely women to surround myself with. Plus, these women, my friends, keep me sane(ish) so a sane wife is a better wife. YKW is intelligent and recognizes this. Plus, they do some funny and sometimes assinine things.

There is Hizzle, my former partner in crime and Alisms at OLD JOB. There is Amy, whom I am not entirely sure isn't having an affair with him. There is Hott Cop because she's spunky and let's face it, a badass. And Sparky because she's feisty. And then there is Sarah, the original crush.

Remember her? She's the Fun One I talk about here. Aaaaand the lunatic I talk about here.

Today I get a text from her:
for your entertainment purposes i may have a date with a hunter gathering country boy with a southern drawl. i have lived here too long clearly.

Well Sarah, I know it's for 'my' entertainment purposes, so I hope you don't mind that it's also for the entertainment purposes of my husband. And my readers.

So I tell YKW about this text that made me laugh. He didn't even bat an eye... just mumbled something to the effect of expecting that kind of crazy date from Natalie (because these things happen to Natalie) and that Sarah really HAS been in Memphis too long. Then, about a half hour later he mentions that Sarah lives in the CITY and these things shouldn't happen in the city. Clearly still on his mind I say!

I would not be shocked in the least that this little "business trip" he is embarking upon tomorrow is really going down to rescue her. Be on the lookout Sarah.

Friday, Friday, FRIDAY!

08 July 2008 | 7 Comments
Oh Friday how do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

One a stimulating bath in the color tub.
Two a massage.
Three a deep cleansing facial.
Four a much needed brow wax.
Five a manicure.
Six a pedicure. A lovely, lovely, foot massaging pedicure.
Seven a shampoo & blow out.

And lunch and FIVE and a HALF hours of uninturrupted time to my very own self... well, I'm sharing a little time with my mutha. But she's ok.

Heaven. Pure heaven.

Now, if I can just get through being a single mom for about 36 hours starting tomorrow morning at 5 am.... c'mon Friday! Mama needs a pedicure.

What color should I get on my toes. And Friend, you know who you are, if you suggest blue, I'll kick your ass.

It does NOT get any better than this.

The cast of the Office


American Gladiators

Ok, not only do I super puffy heart me some Office, but I think the Feud rocks. I know this makes me weird, but especially the bonus round. I think I would kick all kinds of ass on this show. I may see if any of the crazies are interested.
{All images courtesy of nbc.com}

Summer food and the arrival of the crazies.

Image courtesy of Decisive Moment Photojournalism. You can visit their blog here. And two more crazies have been added since!

Next week my family arrives. To top all that off, we're having a reunion of the extended family. I don't think we've all (the extendeds) been together since the wake of my great-grandmother some fourteen years ago. There is a strange and wonderful cast of characters let me tell you. I am quite sure there will be stories, especially since the event is in a city (read DRY) park and well... we're Irish and Catholic. So yeah, that should work well.

So you'll have to wait for stories of the crazies, but for now, I'm busy planning a dinner menu for about 25 people. This is just the immediate family folks. Again, Irish Catholic. So I've been searching recipes and have come across a bunch of summery salads that I'd love to try even if they don't work out for this particular meal.

All are from Cooking Light and by clicking, you will be taken to the recipe.

What are some of your summery favorites?

Hell you say!

07 July 2008 | 7 Comments
So apparently, we're not supposed to be typing two spaces after sentences anymore? Well, while I like to fancy myself semi grammatically and spelling savvy, (admittedly not an Em or an Amy to be sure) I just can't stop the double spacing. I hope you all can deal.

Read about it here.

Oh, and Amy dearest, you'll be happy to know that EDAMAME is now not only a tasty treat for sushi... it's one of about 100 new official words in Websters.

Knee high by the Forth of July

05 July 2008 | 1 Comments
My mom lives downtown so we get literally the best seat in the house for fireworks viewing. Usually they have a big party for the fourth and there are tons of people partaking in all of the festivities. This year they dispensed with all of the hoopla and just had my sister and her family and me and my family down for hot dogs. While the big festivities are nice, this was a really fantastic evening. It was quiet, not chaotic in the least and I had no problems keeping track of Finnegan. And let's face it, that is a MUST when you're 3 stories high.

Anywho, the big festivities will likely be back next year, but for now, here are the pictures of the quiet counterpart.

I wanna play! J-Ma, Finn, & Dylan.


The 1st show of the evening over Hen's Stadium.

Finn & Mama snuggled in watching the show.

The main attraction.

For firework photography tips, we consulted Canon Digital Learning and Digital Photography School.

And last, but not least.
Express written consent... blah, blah, blah fancypants beer drinking BIL.

Hope you all had an incredible, safe, happy 4th.

My daddy the rockstar.

03 July 2008 | 0 Comments

Tonight we went to a local park to listen to my dad play. He's the bassist in the black t-shirt on the far side of the pic. I love that he is smiling in this pic, he's normally so serious when he plays.

This was the perfect end to a kind of crap day. It has been raining like mad here so we woke up to a flooded back yard. Our trusty sump did its job, but the water was shooting out the top of the dry well in the backyard because it was full. The good thing was, all of those nasty storms brought some COOL weather with it. It was in the mid 60s which is perfect weather to sit out and listen to some music and have a picnic dinner in the park.

The band was fantastic, although, I am going to have American Girl in my head for days. It is a total earwig song. There was a pretty decent size crowd in attendance too. Maybe 200-250 people and a good time was had by all.

Hope you all have a safe and happy holiday weekend! I'm going to attempt to get a post in tomorrow, but I am not sure if I'll have the time.

My fancy new mailbox!

02 July 2008 | 0 Comments
We've been doing lots and lots of yard work, which partially explains my short/lack of posting the past two days. My mom came over and helped me weed the garden. I mowed the yard with Dave's fancy new mower, broke it, turns out it wasn't that broke. D cleaned out all of the gutters. We bought six bags of mulch and mulched our little rose garden. Dave edged the front walk and along the driveway. I cut back all of the spring plants and flowers AND pruned the tree. It's been a crazy couple days.

My reward? A fancy new mailbox!

You can get your own right here at Lowes!

Kung Fu Fiiiiiighting.

01 July 2008 | 1 Comments
Ladies & Gents,
Please go over and take a gander at Jackie's new blog. She is going to kick all kinds of ninja ass.

P.S. Jackie is the defender of the universe I talk about here.
P.P.S. Jack, I'm working on your new header... be prepared.
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