Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Almost Wordless Wednesday


Some days, one bean bag is just not enough.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Tough day for Molly

Being a part of a family is wonderful.  You get all sorts of love and support.  But belonging to a family also brings with it certain responsibilities.  You have to pitch in and help out.  This means doing a chore or a favor from time to time.  It may not always be what you want to do, but it is what is expected when you are a part of a family.
And I am not just talking about people here.  I am talking about each and every member of a family.  As many of you know, we have several furry family members.  And the furries do not get a free pass.  There are garbage men to bark at and birds and other critters to chase.

Last Wednesday was a particularly busy day for us at the Crazy Key House.  And our littlest furry Key had a day jam packed full of important jobs.

First the kids and I went to the commissary.  We got back and we were trying to get all the groceries unloaded before it was time to head to our next engagement.  I was having some trouble fitting all of the new items into the fridge.  I bought 2 containers of tomatoes, and those were the last things that I was trying to find a place to put them.  I was also keeping the kids and track and a few other things.  So when everything was in the fridge, I thought, "yes!"  I had no idea that my helpful little Molly was aware of my plight.  And bless her heart, she was ready to help.  She made the executive decision to just find another place for those tomatoes.  And it was all really quite clever. 

She snacked on a few.

And then she decided that the plastic case was not a suitable storage receptacle.

I think you'll be impressed with her final decision.
So after the troublesome task of putting away most of the groceries, the kids and I were off again to our next commitment.  I am sure Molly was busy guarding the house from neighborhood kids and UPS trucks while we were gone.  I mean, a dog as helpful as she is would never just take the afternoon off.

Later on, after we were home, I was working on the dishes.  I had not had a chance with our early morning errands to get the dishwasher loaded and unloaded.  And let me tell you, this is a job that I pretty much cannot do alone.  Ever since Molly arrived on the scene, she is my devoted dishwasher dog, for sure.

And she takes her job very seriously, too.  She has developed techniques to get at some of the dishes that would be out of reach for a less experienced dog.
Just look at her form.
She does like to be noticed when she is working this hard. 
"Look we me, Mom, sacrificing my body for your dishes."

We could all learn something from this devoted little helper, couldn't we?

But even the most devoted and hardest working among us have rough days, right?
The stress of the day can really start to wear on you.
Apparently, Molly is no different.
Remember when I said that we had put away most of the groceries?  Well, little Molly apparently saw something that she thought she might need.  She stashed it away for another time. 
And I guess after the busy say she had, it was a good thing.
Some days you can get a headache.

And if this happens and you are a dog, you are in trouble.
What with the no opposable thumbs thing, opening much needed medication can be difficult.
I mean, you can get the box open and the top off pretty easily.

But darn that child-proof and apparently (thankfully) dog-proof safety seal.
She had to give up.
She left it in the yard for me to find.

Here is a closer look at her valiant attempt.

I guess I better do a better job at keeping medicine out of reach of children - human AND canine. . .

After a hard day of helping me and doing her chores, she was worn out. 
I guess she just gave up on the "headache medicine" and just went on to sleep.

We are so lucky to have such a helpful little dog.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Almost Wordless Wednesday

Westies are the Besties!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Fashion tips?

We had just gotten back from Hawaii on Thursday. I had to get up early to take Max to the vet. So I got up, showered, got dressed in comfy clothes. I mean, I was in no way close to being over the whole time change, so there was no need to get all gussied up, right? I was just going to the vet. So Max and I headed out and took card of business. I came back home and did a few things around the house. And then about 11, I realized that David, Jessa, and Spencer were all still in the bed. The house was quiet. So what did I do? Yep, I went upstairs and climbed back in the bed! I slept a few more hours, still in my comfy clothes (knit pants and a long sleeved t-shirt). Late in the afternoon, David suggested that we all go bowling. I thought that sounded like fun. And the kids are always up for a night at the lanes. So I hollered at them to get dressed. Yes, they were somewhat dressed. I mean, they were not naked. Spencer actually still had on jommies. But normally before we leave the house, I like for everyone to look at least somewhat presentable. 
They both head to their bedrooms to get cleaned up to go out. I considered changing my clothes, but then I decided, hey, it's just bowling. So I did not heed my own advice.
Jessa walked back into our room holding something that looked like jeans. She brought them right over to me and asked if she could wear them. I looked closer, and it was overalls. My first thought was where did she get those? I have not bought overalls in years. I asked her what size were the overalls in her hand. She looked and looked and found the size. 3T. Yep. My 7 1/2 year old daughter with a closet full of clothes in HER size wanted to wear some 3T overalls. Out. In public. I said, well, you can try them on. In my head, I am thinking that there is no way that she will even be able to get them on her body.
Well, she got them on, but she had me help her fasten them.
I thought there was no way she'd be comfortable enough to actually wear them.
She said she was.  She has called my bluff.
I decided to just go with it.
Then she chose her footwear.
And well,
this is what she looked like:
Overalls are a size 3T, people!

And as we were walking out the door, she looked over at me in my knit pants and t-shirt and said,
Mom, are you going to wear that?
Right backatcha, little girl.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Almost Wordless Wednesday

Spencer is still not sure about the pool and the water. 
We have made lots of progress this summer,
but he still as a healthy respect for the water.
More than respect, really,
apprehension, fear, dread, anxiety.
Even though he wants to swim and spend lots of time in the pool,
he is not taking ANY chances.
I think his motto is

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Writing on the wall

OK, maybe the actual writing is on paper. 
And maybe the paper is hanging on the door,
but boy do these kiddos crack me up!

So Jessa was in a mood.  Of course, that is most days, so I could not begin to imagine what it was all about on this particular day.  I went looking for her, and she was all locked up in her room.  Only I noticed some signage outside on her door.  I never go in to her room without knocking, so I was raising my arm to knock.  But then I noticed what the signs said.  My sweet girl is dramatic, even in print.

Have a little look:

"Hiding 2012
My Moto is: Sleep"
"Welcome to the Jessa.
No one is allowed except me, kitty, and my stuff.
P.S. Send in food (lunch, dinner, breakfast) and drinks (coke, milk, tea)"
"Do not interrupt.
I'm busy! So very busy
P.S. Send in food and drinks."

"I'm going in hibernation.
P.S. You can send in breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
P.S. I am never coming out."

There is no middle ground with my Jessa! 
Whatever upset her, it must have been pretty serious. 
I am happy to report that she did in fact come out. 
And I never even had to send in one meal.

A few days later, after a particularly intense discussion about keeping her room picked up,
a new sign appeared.
It still cracked me up, and the message and tone were much more to my liking.
"Note to self:
Keep room clean."

Not to be outdone, a few days later, Spencer also posted a sign on his bedroom door.
Check it out:

I am sure you will all be relieved to know
that he has assured me that
at least for the time being,
I am not a girl.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Art so good it's SCARY

My kids love to be creative.  And most of the time, I try to let them.  Sometimes I want to say "NO!" to paint or play-doh or moon sand because I know that no matter how careful they are or how much they attempt to clean up that, well, it will just be another mess.  But I resist that urge most of the time and let them express themselves.  Aren't I a good mother?
For example, last night, Jessa wanted to play with play-doh, so I said, "Sure."  She was getting the big container out, and she couldn't find the one with the tools in it.  It hit me that I had left it at church.  When I told her this bit of sad news, she put her hand on her hip and said in her most teenaged voice, "But Mom!  How do you expect me to be creative without the tools? big sigh"  I don't know what my problem is, do you?

So you get it, they love to be artsy.  Well, a few weeks ago, they wanted to do self portraits.  So Jessa got out the paint and paper.  I cut the paper long enough for their little bodies.  They laid down on the paper while I traced their outlines.  And then they painted themselves.  They tried to paint what they had on, and yes, Jessa had on a blue plaid skirt, a red USA shirt, and black and orange striped Halloween socks.  So of course, her portrait did, too.  And yes, Spencer's PJ top was a little short, so his stomach showed a tad.  So of course, his portrait had that detail.

Once they were finished, we let them dry.  And then I face the dilema of all parents.  Now what do I do with this masterpiece?  I would LOVE to save every scrap of every project they ever complete, but that is unrealistic.  And also a storage problem.  And also a fire hazard.  But these were so big and beautiful, we couldn't part with them right away.  They were way too big for our hallway gallery.  So I decided to hang them on the doors in the hall.  They are opposite the rest of the framed artwork, but they are still in the hall.  The children were quite pleased that the portraits were being displayed.  I was happy to reclaim the kitchen table and floor where the art had been.  Life was good.

BUT now, these darn portraits keep scaring me to death!  Out of the corner of my eye, I will see a tall person.  I start to panic as I turn my head and feel silly when I see them, up there, smirking at me and my stupidity. 

Yet, it keeps happening. 
I am taking Molly out to go to the bathroom and I see this:

I am heading to the launry room and I see this:

I know I should be used to them by now, but at night, when all the lights are out, and David is out of town, and the kids are in bed, and I catch a glimpse of them, well. . . 
 I guess I am just going to have to get over it or move them. 
My heart can't take it.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

All around me

In the morning, when I get up and get into the shower, I think of moving in to our house at Fort Stewart.  I wanted a fancy new shower head, so Poppy went with me to Wal-Mart and helped me pick out a new one.  And then he got it all installed in our master bath that day.  We brought it with us, and we are still using it.
In our bedroom, our headboard,
our nightstand tables, a step stool, and a hope chest were all "Handcrafted by Emory C. Parrish," according to the official name stamp that he
applied to all of his creations:
In the kitchen, I can see the curtains that he made for me in 2003, and that I have used in many different houses. 
There is also a wooden sunflower sitting in my window.  It is bright and cheery, and he bought it for me at a little shop in Germany when he and Mimi came to visit us.
I see him in pictures.  I smile when I think of what he would say or do if he were here.  I look at my kitchen table and I can picture him sitting there, like he did countless times when he came to see us. 
He would be drinking a cup of coffee and thinking about his day - most of the time barefooted, which drove Mimi crazy because it made her feet cold just looking at him.

I see the things that he hung for me at this house. 
And I think of all of the times he hung them for me at all of our other houses.  And I think of the things that I wanted to hang when he wasn't here.  But I would call him, and he would walk me through it.  He never got impatient when I did not know what he was talking about.

I also use the cabinet he built for us.  My kitchen at Ft. Stewart was terribly small with no storage or counter space, so he built me one to fit the corner of the kitchen.  Now it comes with us everywhere we move.
I see the books that he sent to Jessa and Spencer.  They arrived a few weeks before he died.  I love the notes he wrote to them.  I love seeing his handwriting.
Speaking of books, he found some old books in the basement.  They were Momma and Danny's books.  Lucas and I read them when we were younger.  He called me once he found them to see if I wanted them before he gave them away.  I said that I would love to look at them.  When he arrived on his next visit to Scott, he had boxes of books AND a bookshelf that he built to store them in.  Now that is full service, right?
And there is the tool box and doll bed that he fixed up for them.
The tool box,
was Poppy's and then Uncle Danny's.  He refinished it and brought it to Spencer.
The doll bed,
was Momma's.  He repainted it and brought it to Jessa.

I think of him when I feed Stewart on the table that he built specifially for him to keep his food and litter box out of the way.
I can't help but grin when I open the freezer and see the bags of pecans that he bought for all of us every year.

I miss him so much. 
I feel such a loss.
But he is still here,
and everytime I an reminded of him,
my heart smiles.