overdramatic queen.

18 minutes.

a lot can happen in 18 minutes.

the kitchen can be cleaned.

a quick dinner can be made.

baths for three can be had.

a tivo’d half hour show can be watched (fast forwarding through your commercials).

do you wanna know what took 18 minutes TODAY?? please, allow me to tell you…

Kaia cried for 18 minutes STRAIGHT. CRIED for 18 ENTIIIIIIIIRE MINUTES… because I carried her to the car this morning since it was pouring down rain and she really wanted to WALK. drama queen doesn’t cut it. try, OVERDRAMATIC QUEEN.

18 minutes doesn’t seem that long when you’re making dinner or watching a favorite show. Do you know how loooooong 18 minutes feels when one of your children is having a MELTDOWN?

let me try to put it in perspective for you… Gov. Jan Brewer’s infamous awkward silence lasted a mere 8 seconds. EIGHT SECONDS of painful silence heard ’round the world. Kaia’s crying lasted for ONE THOUSAND AND EIGHTY EXCRUTIATING SECONDS.

there are some parents out there that have a special gift for blocking out crying, whining, and screaming. in my 4.5 years as a parent, i have NOT acquired this gift.

it felt like i was on the brink of insanity… even though i knew there was an end in sight, because i was dropping her off at daycare. (don’t judge me.)

then, of course, after we get to Ms. Norma’s i ask her if she wants to walk and she says she wants me to carry her in. so i do. and she is fine.

*poof* overdramatic queen is on break… until 5:30PM when i will pick her up again.

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By The Numbers…

10 = Number of days since I’ve written you.
2 = Number of kids at my house with pink eye.
20 = Number of times I’ve administered greasy ointment for said pink eye.
40 = Number of times I’ve washed my hands to administer said ointment.
5 = Number of times I’ve washed and re-washed my girls’ bedding and pillowcases due to icky eyes and soaked diapers.
4 = Number of wins my hubby’s football team has earned so far this season.
0 = Number of losses his team has so far this season. *knock on wood*
35 = Number of dollars spent on donuts for his defense for putting up a gooseegg last week.
3 = Number of birthdays we’ve celebrated in the last ten days (including one today).
184 = Number of miles traveled to JMU with my sister-in-law on the 18th for the academic open house for prospective students (go dukes).
552 = Number of miles I will be making to JMU within the next month for various reasons (go dukes).
4,064 = Number of fruit flies we apparently have in our house right now for some awful reason. (anyone have tips for how to get rid of them?)
13 = Number of windows and doors being replaced in our house on Thursday- yippeeeee!
27 = Number of humorous names I’ve been called by my adorable son since I’ve last written.

What Would You Do?

So Aidan has gotten into calling me names lately… sometimes when I lose my patience (nice way of saying, “Flip my shit”) he might call me “Mr. GrumpyPants,” which makes sense to me.

Other times, when I ask him to do something that he might not want to do he might pull out the good ol’ “Flumpy Rat.”

He’s also used “SlowPoke” and “Mr. Lumpy” for several different people on several different occasions.

My response to his name-calling is… *wait for it*… thunderous laughter. I llllllllllllliterally can’t help myself. It is so funny to me how he comes up with these names… even if half the time they turn me into a dude with apparent weight problems.

I know as a mom that I should not encourage this name-calling… and laughing at this behavior is most certainly the reason he keeps on keepin’ on. I’ve started to tell him that he shouldn’t call people names… but it really does still make me laugh. It’s not like he’s calling me an F-ing Biotch. That would NOT make this mama smile one bit.

But what do YOU think I should do? And the ultimate double standard question… would it be as funny coming from one of my girls?? *gulp*

Pic Tease



*ugh* the anticipation is killing me.

i feel like i am dying of thirst and the only source of hydration is a broken faucet that is letting out one slow drop at a time… but it is worth the wait. let’s call that source of hydration, “allie.” not that allie is a broken faucet, in fact, if she were a faucet she would be a fancy Kohler.

annnnnnnd, now you know what I’m getting at…

Here are some more pics from the photo shoot on Saturday.




oh, and i patted myself on the back when i decided to name this post “Pic Tease” for obvious dirty-minded reasons.

i can’t make this stuff up…

So David had Back-to-School night last night.

I worked late tonight.

David has a game tomorrow night.

I get home tonight and David says he has more bad news… he has a coach’s meeting on Monday next week from 6-9PM.

Obviously this upsets me because we’ve barely seen each other lately, and I (jokingly) accuse him of having an affair… to which he replies, “Oh yeah, I’m having an affair and I’m bringing a tie and suit to work to change into for my mistress.” (He has to look nice for back-to-school night and his gym clothes from teaching health and p.e. all day doesn’t cut it.)

To which I reply with, “Well, that makes sense because most women like a man all dressed up.”

To which he replies, “Then I’m never having an affair.”

All I can do is laugh because he seriously hates dressing up so much that that actually WOULD keep him from having a mistress.

I guess it’s a good thing I married a P.E. teacher.

Could it be true?

… the moment I’ve been waiting for…
Aidan is 4. Kaia is 3. Addi is 2. We’ve been saying since we were prego with Addi that life would be so much easier in a couple of years. Now that time has come and I’m learning that I may have jumped the gun on that statement. BUT, I still wanted to capture this point in time with my kids, because years down the road (after I’ve made all of the edits), I’m going to look back at this time and realize that I miss it.
So I’ve planned for almost a year now to have our family pictures taken… by a REAL photographer. Not one of those one-hour photo places at the mall. I asked one of my old sorority sisters to capture this moment in time for us because in the past two years since Addi’s been born we don’t have a single picture of our entire family looking at the camera at the same time and smiling. It’s PATHETIC.
So on Saturday, after months of planning outfits- and last minute preparations, we went to Belmont and had a two-hour session with the talented Allie Carroll.
It was stressful. The kids lasted about 20-30 minutes before they lost their patience with the process… David thought they did better than he expected. I set my expectations a little higher *shocker*.
There was actually a 15 minute potty break in the middle of the session because Aidan decided to take a leisurely poop. I. Kid. You. Not.
But on the bright side, I actually think we got some FABULOUS shots and I am peeing my pants with anticipation to see the finished product.
Here’s the teaser:


i. heart. it.

I actually had these word signs for the past three years in a closet in my house and while thinking of props to bring to the shoot *BAM* I dug these bad boys out and I’m pretty sure that makes me some kind of GENIUS. Eat your heart out, Einstein.

Allie’s blog post can’t come soon enough!!!

Christmas in September?

there is something you should know about me.

it’s kinda a big deal.

my life changed when i decided to call JMU my home as a high school senior back in 1998 when we were “raisin’ the roof” because it was on fire. *pretty sure we coined the term- we were that awesome- i’m just sayin’.* as a senior i had no idea the impact my decision would make. my parents never took me to visit any colleges. i was on my own… but i knew it was “the next step.” luckily, i made the right step.

the four years (four GLORIOUS years) I spent at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA were some of the best years of my life. as cliche as it sounds, it is 100% TRUE.

i spent four years learning from some of the best and brightest… but let’s face it- the part that made my experience truly what it was were the friends i made and the experiences i had. i lived like a true duke. i breathed it all in (even that weird smell on rainy days). i sang the fight song at the top of my lungs. heck, i even taught my tour groups the song (i had the privelege of being a Student Ambassador and got to tell prospective students all about the wonder that is JMU). i was involved (some might say overly-involved, but i would like to challenge them to a duel of purple foam fingers). all of my involvement at JMU from SA’s to Greek Life to Orientation led me to where i am today.

i. bleed. purple.

so it goes without saying that Saturday’s win against VA Tech (#13 in the country… not no mo’)made my frickin’ day. Christmas came early this year.

oh yeah, and David’s team won again on Friday night- CHOW CHOW CHOW! Bulldogs are 2-0. Dukes are 2-0.

and we’re off to a good start.

Colts on the otherhand are not making me too happy… but Peyton will pull it back together soon.

Losing It.

Last night was a stressful night with my kids. I actually told Kaia that, “I am LITERALLY losing my mind right now.” Of course, she had no idea what that meant, but it didn’t stop her tantrum.

Her tantrum started because when we got home I took her out of her carseat and put her down on the ground so she could walk into the house. This upset her because she wanted to get out of the car HERSELF. WTF?

Then she laid down on the driveway and refused to move because she wanted me to put her back in the car so she could get out herself. I refused to give her what she wanted because I don’t want her to think that she can throw a fit and get her way. Makes sense, right?

Unfortunately, this created a waterfall of emotions for Kaia-boo. She cried. She yelled. She wanted me to hold her. She tried to HIT me. Ohhhhhh no, no, no. You. Don’t. Hit. ANYONE… but ESPECIALLY, MOMMY- the woman who brought you into this world (and as Bill Cosby would say- “I brought you in and I can take you out!). I yelled. More tears.

I know that she is upset because she missed me all day. I know that she just doesn’t know how to express her emotions right now. That’s why she desperately needed to hold me. And I DID hold her. For a little while. But let’s not forget that I also am responsible for making dinner and I have two other children who missed me all day. Do you know how hard it is to make dinner while holding a 35 lb. 3 year old while your 2 year old is trying to stand between you and the stove because she wants to be in your arms too?

Yesterday was not one of my finest moments. David came home while I was putting the finishing touches on dinner and while Kaia was still sobbing in her room (where I sent her to cry until she was done). He went in and picked her up and was able to give her the attention that I couldn’t at the time. It kills me that I don’t have more arms so that I can really just focus on holding and loving my kids when I pick them up from work. UGH- is dinner REALLY that important? Well, yes… it kinda is essential from what I hear.

David could see I was stressed… mostly because I told him how stressed I was. But he gave the kids a bath and got them into bed for me. Then he told me what I really needed to hear.

He said, “You’re a good mom.”

Because I didn’t feel like one an hour ago. Why is it SO HARD for me? Why can’t I be more patient? Why can’t I just hold my babies and enjoy every second with them like the other mom blogs I read?

So I drank a tall glass of wine (so tall it would probably be considered two glasses, but that’s neither here nor there). I tried to recharge my battery because tomorrow (today) is game day and I will have my kids by myself.

I woke up this morning to exercise and Kaia and Addi ran out from their rooms at 6:15AM (ugh) asking for “Pop Tawts.” (Kaia says Pop Tarts like she’s from New Jersey.) And I tried to finish my yoga with two little girls climbing all over me. Have you ever tried to do a roll up with two babies behind you or a downward dog with a girl on your back? But instead of getting frustrated… I just laughed.

It’s a new day.
And it’s early.
And I’m rested.
And I have a looooong night ahead of me.

Labor Pains

Whattaweekend.

David and I had to work on Monday (he had football practice and UMW was open for bid’ness), so we apparently felt the need to fit 3 days of events into a regular weekend.

My boss let me leave on Friday a couple of hours early and David actually didn’t have a game or practice Friday because they won their first game on Thursday night (1-0 now! GO BULLDOGS!) So we called each other on our drive home and were both planning to stop by the grocery store before we got the kids because we had NO food in the house. BAM! A date! We seriously haven’t gone grocery shopping together in probably 3 years. We used to be one of those couples that probably make you sick when you see them- we would each have one hand on the cart while the other is wrapped around each other’s waist. It would make a chore that I dislike more than brussel sprouts somewhat bearable.

After shopping and picking up the kids, we did our normal evening routine (dinner, baths, bedtime). Then we actually watched our Netflix movie- Leap Year- and ate popcorn… I may have even had a couple of glasses of wine too.

On Saturday, I started the laundry and then we decided to load the kids up in the car and take them to Ethan’s first football game. Go Canes! Ethan looked so cute in his uniform and Aidan just idolizes his big cousin.

Ethan won his first game and then we took the kids home for lunch and naptime. While the kids were sleeping/resting, I finished up the laundry and then went out to Value City to take advantage of the Labor Day sales. I saw an awesome white pub table with 4 chairs in their weekly ad for $99 and decided it would look great in our kitchen (especially since I’ve decided to paint our cabinets white eventually)!

After picking up our table, I went to get my haircut because my hair has been driving me crazy lately and we have family pictures planned for Saturday. I’m SO excited to have our pics taken, but it is STRESSFUL trying to plan out all of our outfits, the perfect location, props, and the ideal TIME for the pictures. I’m praying that everything turns out ok and that my kids are all in a good mood on Saturday at 10AM! (I’ll keep you posted.)

Once my hair was cut, I needed to stop by the grocery store AGAIN because we planned an impromptu picnic for Sunday at our house, that quickly turned into a stressful meal for 20 at my in-laws.

Made it home to help give the kids a bath and put them to sleep.

On Sunday, we had church and then went to Grammy and Poppy’s house for Sunday brunch (a longtime tradition). David had his weekly coach’s meeting so it was just me with the kids and Kaia was in a “Mommy Mood,” which is really just a nice way of saying she could not do ANYTHING without me. Lllllllllliterally. The slightest boo-boo was a catastrophe and no one else could soothe her.

Then I took the kids to Uncle Shinny’s house where we went fishing and “jetskiis-ing” as Aidan would say. The kids had a blast and it must’ve been exactly what Kaia needed to feel better. Aidan caught a fish *this big* which magically grew every time he told the story that day.

The girls relaxed in the hammock drinking in the beautiful weather.


Then it was time for “jetskiis-ing.” All of the kids took a turn- some were more timid than others. Aidan obviously has no fear at all because he grabbed the throttle and almost threw Uncle Shinny off the back! All you could see was water flying into the air and the wake they left in their dust! It was hilarious… to us who were safely on the dock. Shin probably almost had a heart attack.


Kaia’s turn! She tried to hang onto the handlebars like a big girl, but as you can see her little arms made it hard for her to reach and see at the same time…

Addi did not want to be left out (of course)… so whenever we asked the kids whose turn it was next, Addi would say in her little voice “Me! Me! Meee!” But then when she got on the jetski, it was all business… no smiles. But you can tell she liked it, because she kept asking for a turn again.

Then around 2PM I took the kids home for a late nap, because we were supposed to go to Grammy’s house at 4PM for the cookout. Needless to say, I was already tired by the time 4PM rolled around. There was no backing out of this though- our worlds were about to collide! This is the dramatic way of saying that my family and my husband’s family were going to get together. So we had plenty of food, plenty of awkward moments, and a little pool time to end the night. We wrapped up the evening (and the weekend) by tucking our little blessings into their beds… and falling into bed ourselves about an hour later.

There is one good thing about having to work when everyone else in the country seems to be off- the commute is heavenly.

Happy Labor Day, everyone! Hope you kept busy too!

Ketchupalooza

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again- I. LOVE. MY. JOB.

I love what I do. I get to help people achieve their goals by picking the right school for them. I love the people I work with. Part of it might be the type of person I am, because I like to have fun when I work- but how many of you can actually say that YOU have fun where you work? How many of you can actually say that you don’t dread Mondays? I can.

Now don’t get me wrong- would I rather be with my friends or family? Of course! Well, most of the time… there are times when my kids are driving me crazy and I actually look forward to Monday. Don’t JUDGE ME!

Before you finish reading this, I also want you to know that we work hard at UMW. My work is always done and done well… a trait passed down to me from my mother, no doubt.

However, when there is opportunity for a little fun to be thrown into a busy week- leave it up to me to find it.

Charles, my co-worker, during one of our many conversations mentioned that he was a loyal Heinz customer and would never buy anything other than Heinz. I thought that was ridiculous since all ketchup tastes the same to me and I have no problem buying generic brands. He said that he could honestly taste the difference. Obviously, I immediately decided we would need to have a blind taste test to challenge his palate.

Danielle, another co-worker, vowed that she could easily pick out Heinz from the competitors.

KETCHUPALOOZA is BORN.

On a Friday (during everyone’s lunch hour), Priscilla and I set up the conference room for our event. I sent out an eVite to the entire Stafford Campus so that anyone who wanted to witness the challenge could participate- afterall, this could result in saving them a whopping $2 a YEAR in ketchup if they decide generic is just as good as HEINZ.

Each contestant’s place setting:

As you can see, we prepared for this event. The coffee grounds were intended so Charles and Danielle could smell it after each taste to cleanse their palate’s. They could also take a sip of ice water to get the previous ketchup taste out of their mouths. Rather than blindfolds, they wore blurry glasses with tomatoes covering the lenses to ensure they could not see the color/consistency of their ketchups. We had rubber gloves to cover the hands of the “feeders,” one of which consisted of the Associate Provost for the division. We left no base uncovered.

We decided there would be 3 rounds. The first round all 4 ketchups would be HEINZ (obviously, Charles and Danielle did not know this fact). This would accomplish several different things: 1)It would allow Charles and Danielle to taste their favorite ketchup FOUR times before tasting any of the competitors and 2) It would boost their confidence because they would obvious pick HEINZ no matter which ramekin they chose.

Round 2, on the otherhand, did not include Heinz as a choice (again, Charles and Danielle did not know this). Some people might think this was cheating. Pris and I figured since we just let them taste HEINZ 4 times in the first round, and that they vowed they could taste the difference between HEINZ and other brands, they should easily be able to call our bluff.

Round 3 was the final round. It included 4 ketchups: HEINZ, Hunt’s, McDonald’s (which is not HEINZ- it is a ketchup made specifically for McDonald’s use only… in case you were wondering), and Wegman’s. This round was the true test- it was their opportunity to SHINE.

Obviously, they both got Round 1 correct… because they couldn’t get it wrong. What was interesting was that even though all of the cups were HEINZ, they actually would taste one cup and shake their head thinking, “There’s no way THAT’S HEINZ,” even though it was the EXACT same ketchup as the one they tasted before.

Even though HEINZ wasn’t an option in Round 2… Charles and Danielle could not tell that one of them was not HEINZ, infact- Charles picked Hunt’s and Danielle picked McDonald’s brand. So they are batting .500.

Round 3… the REAL test. Do they honestly know their ketchup? Of course NOT. Charles picked Hunt’s AGAIN. Danielle picked Wegman’s.

Now that I proved my point, do you think they will buy Hunt’s or a generic brand ketchup the next time they are at the grocery store? They both EMPHATICALLY said, “NO WAY!”

I guess that is why HEINZ controls 60% of the market.