Monday, August 31, 2009

Controversial Monday - TMZ Exclusive

Should the 1st Amendment grant rights to paparrazzi photogs who stalk celebrities just waiting to steal a shot from a private life for public consumption? And what of the American public that laps up such "news" of famous and infamous stars at the dog bowl of Entertainment Tonight and TMZ?

Such shameless exploitation! Can we get a break?

Julie, star blogger and founder of Controversial Mondays, is seen getting ready to leave a posh night spot and turn in early. What is that, an ice cream bar? She'd better be doing some Jillian Michaels to keep ahead of those calories if she want to keep that killer bod.

Earlier in the day, Julie took a break to pal around with her younsters Deacon (5) and Lincoln (2). Julie prefers to lounge by pools in August, but despite unseasonably cool August weather, they seemed to be enjoying the day.

Is Julie sporting a baby bump? Looks like Julie and her deck planer husband Noah have been getting busy after the sun sets on the decking projects! Stay tuned to TMZ for updates as we monitor this and other important situations.


Saturday, August 29, 2009

Lots of justification

One of the problems with being a laid back mom is that sometimes your two year old slips through the cracks (figuratively, not literally. It was the 5 year old who...oh never mind). Anyway, sometimes the 2 year old may end up wearing his "Naps Are the Enemy" t-shirt for 2 days and 2 nights straight.

Why didn't I change it?

-everytime I try to change his clothes he shrieks "no" and pushes them away. We are potty training and so I am being rather bossy about that, so I am trying to pick my battles.

-he has just been running around the back yard for the last couple days and honestly, I am just kind of glad that he has anything on.

-when we have gone places it has been with different people so no one knows he is wearing the same clothes. And if we did see the same people, how would they know that I don't own 2 size 2 shirts that are identical. Hmm...the food stains may give it away. But really, I pay very little attention to what any other kid is wearing, so why should anyone notice my kid's attire?

Is that enough justification?

I am sure my mom and mother in law are cringing that I just shared that. Everytime I pick my kids up from their houses they have been given baths, haircuts or have had their fingernails clipped.

But maybe that is what Grandmas are for.

Friday, August 28, 2009


I can't remember passwords and sign ins. And I have a lot of them.

If I write them down, I either can't find where I wrote them or else I can't identify them because they were not labeled properly.

After calling one bank multiple times in order to log on, I finally have it firmly in my memory.

But my work log in and my other bank? Everytime, I have to call.

Maybe I should just resolve to log into every account, every day until I know them all...


Thursday, August 27, 2009

It works

Back when we had less kids we had people over to play settlers a lot more. By the end of the night most of them thought we would be soon announcing our divorce. We never really could understand it. It was a game. Yeah, during the game things could get a little tense when he would move his lead ship and take my port spot. Or when I would call a monopoly and take the 12 oar that he had just amassed from the latest 6 that was rolled.

But about an hour after the game would be over things would all be good.

Competitive married to more competitive.

And there are times (like this last weekend) when I call my sister and say to her: "no, I am not joking, he is planing the entire deck so that it won't be as much as 1/16 of an inch off".

And I become convinced that if our marriage can last through the deck building summer of '09, that we can get through anything.

Perfectionist married to Industrious.

We have discovered through the years that if something needs to get done, we need to find our own roles. He can't get the top off the vanity? Step aside, matey. I can. I can rip apart the deck, the plumbing, and pull every last speck of linoleum off the bathroom floor. But you want me to build something? Forget it. Too time consuming. I do the destruction (quickly), he does the construction (slowly). I guess that is better than him doing the destruction slowly and me doing the construction quickly.

Careful builder married to Manical with tools.

We have an evening off. He comes up with fun plans and relaxing activities. I plan how many projects we can accomplish.

Lover of relaxing married to Lover of productivity

It is time to go out to eat. Where to go? I pick based on the awesomeness of my coupon. He picks based on atmosphere, quality of food and what he is in the mood for. And he asks for recommendations from the waiter.

Rich dreamer married to practical cheapskate.

I can't control him.

He can't control me.

And that is ok.

All we are responsible for is our responses to each other.

And I am working on that.

Noah married to Julie

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Cram Session

I have about a week and a half before my life changes.

I have to start homeschooling Deke. And I am happy about that, but it is going to take an adjustment, even though it is just Kindergarten. The boys and I are used to doing things and going places and just kind of formulating our schedule by what we feel like each day.

It is the way that I like to operate.

And now we have to add school in.

So I am making lists and schedules and trying to decide how rigid I am going to be. Does this mean me never working at the hospital during the week? Does it mean only going to the Y after lunch?

All these are things I need to start figuring out. And I will.

Probably next week. Maybe, today, we will go to the park.

By the way, my K key is broken and flopping around. How annoying. How can I fix that?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

This is Funny Stuff!

I grew up with 2 sisters and no brothers and now I am the mother of three boys. And let me tell you, it can be a

Basically, I am now mentally prepared for everything to come down to bathroom related accomplishments.

Because, what could be more important?

I get all kinds of information I could care less about. "Mom, come here! You should see this poop I just pooped! It is the biggest I have ever seen!"

"Mom, I forgot to tuck and peed all the way across the room!"

"Mom, somehow I peed all over my clothes!"

"Mom, can't we just pee in the backyard like we get to when we camp with Daddy?"

And I see lots of stuff I don't want to.

Like Lincoln peeing on his brother's leg (it was an accident, wrong place, wrong time kind of thing)

Like Roman peeing into the newly dug post hole (it looked like the perfect place!)

So today I went into the downstairs bathroom to tidy up. The garbage can was gone.

Hmmm... suspicious.

"Guys? Do you know where the garbage can is?" (can you see where this is going?)

"Yeah, mom, it is out here (being the family room). We had so many juice boxes last night we just got tired of going into the bathroom all the time."


What exactly did that mean? (can you see where this is going now?)

Yes. I found a garbage can full of juice boxes. And that is all.

sigh of relief

Monday, August 24, 2009

Controversial Monday: Elective Sonograms

Have you ever made a brownie mix with a caramel packet? You know the ones where you are supposed to make 4 even lines and then move through them the other direction with a knife?

I was going to talk about how many people actually do it that way.
And about if perfectionists follow directions. (they don't. necessarily.)
And if rigid rule followers are perfectionists. (they aren't. necessarily.)

But I changed my mind.

Last night we had some friends over. One of the ladies had her first daughter in Austria. She said that she had a sonogram every month there. Apparently the MD's doppler was tied up in his ultrasound machine and it was just in his office so they got to see the baby at every appointment.

Noah mentioned that recently they banned "non medically necessary" sonograms in CT, in order to crack down on all the "ultrasound boutiques" that offer sonograms by non-medical people for pay.

Although there is not definitive proof, the concern is that the extra heat and vibrations may cause problems for baby or mother. Especially with some of this super clear images some machines are able to get, and also the amount of time they spend taping.

From what I (briefly) looked at, no one is particularly concerned about the grainy 2D ones done at the MD's office.

So I thought, "good for CT! there should be some regulation for 'keepsake' DVDs, when safety hasn't been established". But then I read some more things.

The concern is that some of these laws are backed by the abortion industry because women who see their babies are less likely to abort.

Apparently, however, the prolife organizations who do ultrasounds in CT say that the law is not of particular concern to them. Their sonograms are done by medical professionals, all under the orders of a MD and are done for medical reason (often to establish gestational age and viability). They are quick and not 90 minute intensive videotaping like at the boutiques.

People who are paying 100s of dollars at a boutique are probably not ones who are contemplating abortion.

I think seeing your baby "close up and personal" before birth would be fun, but I am not a big fan of the boutiques. I just think it is just too sketchy and the money may take precedent over safety.

I am more torn over the sonograms being done at the doctor's office. I think the 20 week one is good for checking on things. And obviously there are other conditions or circumstances that warrent ultrasounds, but I think sometimes they are done too quickly at great cost to the health care system.

So while I am a big fan of freedom.
I am also a big fan of keeping medical costs down.

And while I do appreciate technology in healthcare (I work in an ICU)
I also know that it can be greatly abused for people's impatience and selfishness

And while I do admire health care professionals
I also know they can be swayed by "what the people want"
which drives up health care costs

(deleted rant about people who demand/expect all the most amazing technology, hospital perks, private rooms, microscopic incisions, scans, labs but also expect that nothing will hurt, that they will live and fully recover despite their horrendous lifestyle choices, can sue for whatever they want AND that none of these choices should in anyway affect their insurance premiums or if they don't have insurance, heaven forbid that they should get a BILL from the HOSPITAL? Talk about emotional trauma...)

So what have you heard about ultrasound boutiques, new laws, unnecessary medical procedures? What do you think?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man

Who doesn't seem to have many teeth...

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

My Boys at Gooseberry

Dekey Go Co, Super Hero

A conversation with Roman:

R: "Mom, what does Dekey Go Co, Super Hero look like?"

Me: "I don't know. He is a figment of your imagination, he can look however you want him to."

R: "Do we have any movies about dogs that are super heroes?"

Me: "no"

(a little background: Roman named a stuffed dog "Dekey Go Co". No idea way, although I am guessing that the "Dekey" comes from Deacon. The phenomonon of "Dekey Go Co" is growing ever stronger. It is the answer to every joke that Roman makes up and is the name of this imaginary dog super hero. I guess. Or something like that. I can't keep up.)

Next Conversation between Deacon and Roman:

R: "Who is the shortest man in the Bible?"

D: "The apostle Paul?"

R: "No. Peter. Because he slept on his bed".

(FYI: the real joke is "Who is the shortest man in the Bible? Answer: Peter, because he slept on his watch. And the really funny thing is they have both heard that joke over and over, and they still can't get it right)

And one more tidbit:

Does anyone know (without googling it) the name of the family who owned the house where Lee surrendered to Grant?

Just wanted to let you all know that tonight I passed a tv at work and that question stumped the girl on "Who wants to be a millionaire", but I knew the answer!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Controversial Monday: Birth Order

Now, no one likes to be put into a box.

But maybe some should be. Like maybe Lincoln. If I had a big box for him to play in today maybe he would quit screaming, jumping out of the stroller and transferring liquids.

He knows that he has not completed the "transferring liquids" competency. It is not in his file. I checked. Therefore he should not be doing that.

And no, I am not a firstborn, even though I am all about rules.

3 boys in a close line seems like a good situation in which to analyze birth order. You don't have those opposite sex stipulations thrown in etc.

And Deacon does have a lot of first born characteristics. He is pretty good with authority, likes to lead, can be emotionally high strung and a perfectionist. They say that older brothers of brothers are the strongest leaders, generally speaking.

Roman is secretive, tricky and independent. I wouldn't call him a peacemaker, but maybe with time he will become one. He comes up with a lot of ideas though, which Deacon is pretty willing to adopt.

And Lincoln? Yes, he thinks the world revolves around him. He is the clown and I do see him try to manipulate the older ones by who he "sides" with.

I am the middle of 3 girls. And we are all kind of like firstborns. And my husband, who is a first born male is only about 50% firstborn-like in personality (I think that is probably due to his younger sister. Apparently younger sisters of brothers are the only ones who can usurp the older brother. I believe it. I have seen it numerous times.).

So, whatever.

What do you think? Obviously there are a lot of factors, but do you see birth order textbookly affecting your families?

Happy Monday!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

My Life is an Open Blog

Noah and I have been a little stressed out this summer, to say the least.

We have the looming deck project for one. We have spent a lot more mental energy on that than physical, although we have pulled a lot of nails out too. It is just really hard to built a deck around 3 kids, bedtime, rain, jobs and fun.

Pretty much my house has become totally trashed this summer. Meal planning has gone by the wayside. Laundry is hit or miss. Mostly miss.

So a couple of nights ago I suggested that we each make a list of what we consider our own individual stressors, and then compare them.

Actually I wrote down both lists while Noah lay on the couch and dictated.

That is the way we roll.

It was actually kind of interesting.

There were things on there that we can't change right now. Length of commutes, etc, but there were several things on both sides of the lists that could be taken care of with some strategic moves.

Like maybe we should just hire someone for the next project. At least until our kids are a little older.

But my big one is the house. I was keeping up with my nursing job, meal planning, keeping the house marginally neat, kids, friends, volunteer stuff, blogging. But this summer it has all fallen apart. You see the only way I was keeping all the proverbial balls in the air was by not sleeping or resting.

Kids and friends, groceries and exercise by day. Supper, kids to bed and then I would spend all evening cleaning up and preparing for the next day.

And in some ways I am ok with that. But I am going to start homeschooling in the fall, and well, basically I need a little time to sleep.

So today I started yet another major house purge. And it will continue for the next 2 weeks. I am hoping if I do this often enough I will start to see some improvement.


I can hope, right?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Cutting up Pizza

Yesterday I took the older two boys to a birthday party.

The birthday party was for their little friend Anna, who turned 3.

My boys were the oldest ones there. I left Lincoln at home with his aunt.

I asked them what they wanted to get Anna. Deacon chose pink lotion and a mustard colored loofah with a pink duck attached. Roman said he wanted to give her cereal. He proudly presented her with a box of Apple Jacks and My little Pony fruit snacks.

It was nice to be there with 2 kids who I didn't have to chase. I even managed to hold my friends baby for awhile while I helped Deacon and Roman with their craft.

It felt good to be able to be able to help with someone else's kid instead of always being helped. (can we forget for a second that my sister was helping me with Lincoln at home? Maybe we can't).

And then it was time to eat. I grabbed the boys punch. I handed them plates filled with pizza slices, fruit and chips. Then I made up my own plate exactly like theirs and we sat down to eat. I looked around. All the other moms were furiously cutting up their kid's pizza into tiny bites and helping them handle cups of juice.

And I didn't have to. My kids are bigger. They are older. They could handle regular pieces. (can we forget for a second that I don't even cut up pizza for my 2 year old, and haven't since he was maybe13 months? Maybe we can't).

When we left the 3 of us walked to the van. They stayed right by me and no hand holding, carrying or correction was required. (Can we forget for a second that it is not always that way? Maybe we can't). They climbed into their own seats and I made 1 quick click to buckle in Roman. Deacon did his own.

And we drove away.

I love babies and I love young children.

But everyonce in awhile it is nice to see a little glimpse of the future.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Controversial Monday: Bathroom Reading Material

Now, I don't have any reading material in my bathroom.

And I don't judge people who do.

Really. I don't.

If they want Reader's Digest, the paper and crossword puzzles in the general vicinity of 3 year old overspray, that is their business. But it is not for me.

And if I ever use someone elses bathroom I would never consider touching the bathroom reading material.

I don't care if you have reading material in your bathroom or not. But what I do want to know is what about when you visit other people's bathrooms? Would you ever consider purusing their reading material, or is that some sort of violation of appropriate bathroom code?

Friday, August 7, 2009

Boy, I can work myself up

I can be a little high strung.

Now, not about everything.

I am pretty relaxed about my children.

But if it rains on a prime deck building day.

or something ends up costing a little more than expected.

Well, sometimes I can act like it is pretty much the end of the world as we know it.

Living with an extremely laid back husband can be helpful.

But it can also be bad.

Because sometimes I just want him to panic with me.

So I spend all my energy trying to get him to panic.

Sometimes it works, and sometimes I think it makes him think that I am insane.

I am working on it.

Just heard these lyrics to a new Daryl Worley song,

"Man, I know it's tough,
but you gotta suck it up
To hear you talk you're
caught up in some tragedy
Sounds like life to me."

So today, as I sit here I
watch the rain falling onto my partially constructed deck and
listen to the computer game that Noah and the boys are playing

and I tell myself:
This is not a tragedy.
Really, it is good.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Tuesday Firsts!

My kids are getting a little older and moving into new territory.

My husband is also changing a little.

Me. I am still the same. Lots of plans, not as much action.

But all that being said, I have decided to do a "Firsts" post to highlight some new things going on.

Here goes:

*I made a potato dish for supper tonight. I have been wanting to try this particular recipe for 9 years (got it at my bridal shower), but never have because *gasp* it takes 2 hours in the oven and this girl never considers supper more than 1 hour and 45 minutes prior to it needing to be eaten.

*Noah came in a few minutes ago from his run. I told him they had cancelled my shift so I wouldn't be leaving at 10:20 as planned. He said, "sweet. I guess I will go out and run another mile." WHAT!?? Noah voluntarily running MORE? What is this new world I am living in?

*A couple days ago Noah and I helped Deacon put together a little home for a toad he caught. I, of course, did not touch the toad because I am opposed to animals of all kinds.

*I watched my husband kill some flies in the house so that he could feed them to said toad.

* I had to release the toad today because we were afraid it would die from starvation if we did not. My little boy cried his eyes out in the backyard over his "pet". I gotta admit, although I felt a little bad for him, I was kind of like, "dude, when he dies of starvation you won't have him anyway. Isn't it better that he be free?" I wished Noah had done it because Noah has a lot more compassion than I do.

*Lincoln finally agreed to wear big boy underwear instead of just a birthday suit.

Well, I am off to eat my root beer float, which my husband picked up for me when he filled my van with gas (he is learning, dad!)

Good night!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Controversial Monday: The Complimentary Mosquito Slap

Have you guys been there?

You are sitting around a campfire and out of nowhere you get slapped upside the head.


Because someone wanted to kill the mosquito that was perched on your ear.

Or, you are on a lovely evening walk, talking about all the deep secrets of your life when suddenly you are gasping for breath from a sharp whack to the back.


Because someone wanted to kill the mosquito that was setting up a phlebotomy lab on your shirt.

I am not a fan of the out-of-nowhere-kill-the-mosquito-chop accompanied by blood splatter and a triumphant "got 'em!"

What about you?

Is it ok? Is it socially acceptable? Is it better if your spouse does it? Is it alright for a perfect stranger to do it, because after all, we are all partners in the mosquito eradication business?

What say you on this August Monday?