Monday, November 23, 2009

Go go gadget arms!

Does anybody besides me remember this goofy cartoon? Anything that was out of reach for this quirky detective, he'd merely say the phrase "go go gadget arms." Then his arms would stretch out to grasp whatever was out of his reach. I find myself thinking of this cartoon sometimes when I use my feet to pick something up. You see my feet are like my go go gadget arms. I use them to pick up almost everything that is one the floor.

It's a special skill that I've developed. Jealous? You should be because I must say it has made me truly efficient. I'll be dusting or cleaning something up high while picking up items from the floor. I wonder if there are any multi-tasking competitions I could enter?

My new pastime.

I didn't get it taken quick enough, now it's a greenish-yellow color. But just know that at it's pinnacle it was an awesome purplish-black color.
Now onto my new pastime. While Nan and Bill were here Nan taught me how to knit (again) but this time I actually got more than one row done. My first project is a checkerboard scarf for Rubby.
In case your wondering why Rubby gets my very first item it's because she's the shortest member of our family.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Luke was running out the door this morning and grabbed his Indian feather hat to wear to school. It's good too because this is his best angle to be photographed at due to a huge black eye he now has. He and the counter top went at it yesterday and the counter prevailed.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The process of being adored.

Hello, my name is Jamie and my husband adores me. Yes, adores. And it feels awesome. Last week in the mail I got a sweet love letter from my husband (mailed from his office). It expressed his deep love and affection for me, was kind and also funny. Just like he is; all the elements that make life wonderful and fun. An excerpt;

"I feel like I'm extraordinarily fortunate to have found you and ensnared you by sweet, sweet trickery, to be my wife."

See? Eloquent, loving and funny, the perfect combo. He writes me these letters from time to time and I keep each one and on occasion pull them out and read them. They always make me feel fabulous. He also brings me flowers every Friday, usually a couple dozen which I absolutely love. He has an amazing ability to give great presents that are thoughtful and insightful. He kisses me and tells me how beautiful I am. He pinches my bum and tells me when I'm being sexy. :)

When I'm cranky and can't be nice anymore he takes the kids, bathes them and puts them to bed. Then threatens them with the fear for their lives if they get out of bed and bug mom. Just love him for that! He won't let me open my own door and insists that our boys open my door for me everywhere we go. He takes me to parties that he doesn't want to go to. We hold hands when we are together.

When we go to bed at night we lay down and talk for a good hour or two about anything and everything. He takes me out to restaurants that I love and he doesn't. He allows me to be independent and do things that are important to me. We laugh every hour that we're together.
He dances around the house for me.

Yes he is wonderful and I love him. We were talking a few nights ago about our marriage and how happy we are to have such a great one. A few weeks ago we had gone out to dinner with some friends and Chad's romantic ways came up (all the guys were silently wishing him dead).

Later that night while laying in bed chatting Chad said,
"everyone wants to be adored by their husbands but aren't willing to do the work to be actually adored, you are so that makes it easy."

I was grateful for the nice comment, it got me thinking about the process of being adored. And I thought I'd write down some of the stuff I do to make my marriage happy. When he comes home I try to greet him, (if I'm on the phone I get off right away) and go to the door to say hello.

A couple times a week I try to think of some of Chad's favorite meals and make them for him. If I can keep the kids from it I let him get the mail because he just loves mail (who doesn't!). I let him sleep in on Saturday morning. I wear red lipstick just for him. I lock the children outside and won't let them in so I can 'take five' and not be frazzled when he gets home.

I'll make him his favorite cookies on Sunday's. I'll take care of the babies when it's his turn; sometimes. I dress up and try to look pretty for him everyday (some days it just doesn't happen). I curl my hair the way he likes it.

I tell my kids no (mostly because it just feels so darn good) but I do this so that I'm not so emotionally/physically spent by the time he gets home. I want to still have energy left for him every night. I want him to know that he is my priority. So I adjust my schedule to reflect that desire. I nap each day so as to have energy to stay up till the wee hours chatting with my man.

Dad. Stop reading here. Do that for both of us. I try to give it up, frequently. And I put some effort into that. I do my hair, a little lipstick and other stuff (use your imagination). I'm quick apologize if I speak to him with tone. I'll listen to him play his guitar (sometimes). I'll mow the lawn so that he won't have to do it on Saturday.

Okay Dad, you can pick up here. I try to run our household proficiently so he doesn't have any worries. If I see he's stressed about something I'll try to build him up and make him feel better. The general theme here is that I try to think of him and thus he thinks of me (and it probably started the other way around). It makes for a really happy great life.

He's by far the very best thing in my life. Every year is better than the one before. That's not to say that we haven't had some really hard, challenging trials placed before us. Between raising children, health issues, work, etc. Life can be hard. Who knows what challenges this life has in store for us still but I know one thing. That we'll be getting through them together, loving each other through it all.

My favorite workout.

Lately I've mixed up my workout regime. We bring the ipod deck out to the garage, open up the door and the kids I rock out together. We dance, chase each other around, play basketball, try out silly dance moves and have an all around awesome time. We do this for about an hour and then I'm totally whipped, they're still all raring to go. We laugh and play together; and I think the whole time how great these days are that we have together.

Owen is a reader.

Owen read his first chapter book ten days ago. And one everyday since. He has gone totally crazy for The Magic Tree house series. This where we found him this morning when we woke up. He reads for a couple of hours each day and more on the weekends. We're so happy he's loving reading. Love you O.

And on another Owie note I had to post about Owen and his yellow days at school. There is a color system in place to help kids listen and do what they should. It's yellow, green, blue and red. Red means you have to go to the Principal's office because you've not listened to four warnings and done something so super bad, like punch someone in the face (Owen's definition). Blue means that you've had not a great day, you've had to be redirected two or more times. Green means that you had a great day with no redirection or interruptions, etc.

Yellow is something that the teacher set up as a goal for students who want to go above and beyond the normal good behavior requirement. You don't get it for simply not interrupting or doing what you should be doing all day, that would still be a green day (I get my info from small children, you know). No, to get a yellow is something that is hard to do and is only given out when the teacher sees a student going way above and beyond what is expected.

Owens teacher Mrs. Cady told the class at the beginning of the year about the color system. Owen came home and announced that he was going to try and be yellow everyday. Mrs. Cady warned the students that on average she gives out approx. five or six depending on the student for the whole year.

Well, just yesterday Owen brought home his twentieth yellow. I knew he was getting them way more than average and his teacher even called me about it. She said at one point she stopped giving them to him because she was giving them out to him all the time. That was something she wasn't used to. But then she relayed to me that it occurred to her that the behavior she wasn't rewarding with a yellow to Owen for would have most definitely been a yellow for any other student. So she resumed giving out yellows to our boy.

Some of the things he did to receive the yellows were; running over and pulling out her chair for her every time she sat down and insisting that he should open the every door that she walks through. Rallying the kids to all make a good choice and stop talking when they weren't supposed to be. Giving his non ripped pumpkin die cut paper to another student whose was ripped and was very upset about it.

This type of stuff exemplifies who Owen is. He is kind and wants to do good and help other people. He is so driven when a goal has been set. He makes life peaceful (when he's NOT teasing) and easier. He eases my burdens often. We are so proud of our sweet Owie. Love you son.

Rubby loves kitty, poor kitty.

Lily is obsessed with kitty. She carries him everywhere at her side, like you'd carry a book. I just realized that she is flipping me off in this photo. That's another one for my list.

What list you wonder? Oh just a little list I'm keeping of all the terrible things you do. Yes. I have such a list. And it's pretty long. Kitty would probably add items to it if it could.
You can't see it in the photo but Lily's sweet little chubby arms and hands have scratches all over them. Kitty is just trying to survive the love.
She just kept posing so I couldn't resist.
It was this 'love hug squeeze your gut's out' move that caused kitty to puke last Saturday. On the rug too no less. The downstairs is all hardwood and kitty manages to puke on the rug. That's going to make the list too.

Don Draper must be behind this.

Conversations between mother and first born son.

Owen: "Mom do we have any Oxyclean? I've got a really bad stain on my favorite shirt."

Me: "Owie, how do you know what Oxyclean is?"

Owen: "Mom, it's only the number one proven stain fighter on your local grocery stores shelf."

Me: "What t.v. channels have you been watching?"

Owen: "Mom! Do we have any or not because I need to get this shirt in right away so I can get tough stains out."

Me: "No more t.v. for today, okay buddy."

Lily's big girl bed.

A few months ago Lillian decided she was too big for a crib. And as Chad and I now know, what baby wants baby gets (not really but sounds funny, right?). So I went to sewing her up the most perfect bedding. Fit for my sweet (but sometimes truly horrible) daughter. Love you Rubby. Kisses.
I made two pillow shams, a bolster, bed skirt and added some color to the bottom of her drapes.
The bed skirt turned out really cute. I did all of it in one day (I don't suggest it) Chad came home late that night from a concert and I was just finishing up at midnight. I looked like a crazed woman. But I can't stand to leave projects unfinished and I knew that if I didn't finish it I wouldn't sleep. So I just pushed through, and with occasional self soothing talk I managed to avoid hurting children/animals. And fifteen hours later, (and some seriously neglected children) viola complete!
The finished project. I got the headboard online from Walmart (I know this is against my moral code to avoid all things/people Walmart but I think it's technically okay since I never actually set foot in that wretched store).

P.S. I know that there are exceptions to the rule and that not all Walmarts and people whom shop there are disgusting. It's just in my personal experience the majority(99.999% ) are. So please no offense if your a Walmart lovin chicka; your probably out there fighting the good fight to keep that place for imploding into a black hole. Good luck.

P.P.S. It's a fight you'll never win. Give up.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Luke is offically five.

It happened yesterday morning around 7:40 am. He was so excited for it to be his Halloween birthday! I made him a crown to symbolize all the things that the four year old Luke loved this last year. Spongebob, fruit roll ups, his DS, kitty's, Tom and Jerry, Power Rangers, lizards, etc. He was so excited about the crown that he wore it to school. And his teacher reported that he wore it all day long.
I took cupcakes to his classroom that afternoon and as we were walking out of the school Luke saw his shadow and proclaimed, "I'm a king! Just look at my shadow!"
Luke blowing out his candles.
Licking off all the frosting first. Priorities people.
Opening his first present. This year Luke got a Bakugon ball, moon sand, a Mario tiny remote car (that didn't work), a bike, and Spike the ultimate dinosaur.
Lily was shoveling food into her mouth as quick as she could get her hands on it. At one point she even reached over to my plate and took a huge handful of my pasta.
Waiting in such sweet anticipation for the grand finale present.
Trying out Spike the ultimate dinosaur.
Getting ready to let go of our balloon wishes. Kitty wished that Lily would go on a vacation; funny, Chad and I wished for the same thing!
It was a great day, Luke is such a fun boy. He can be the absolute sweetest boy in the world, as long as everything is going his way. :) Love you Luker.

We love Spongebob and kitty goes for a ride.

Chad and I often find ourselves quoting some Spongebob. It's just that there are so many practical applications found in an episode.
Lily is still very much enjoying kitty. Kitty is having second thoughts about us though.
Oh, and kitty was finally named. Chad came up with the name. The children do not even know kitty's full name. That's how bad it is. The word bad is in it. Kitty's new full name is . . . Major Bad ass Mead. I'll let you figure out what part the kids don't know.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Lily, this is the devil calling. Wanted to tell you your doing great!

Yesterday, Lily put terrible two's to the test. The collaboration of which was far worse than any single day of mothering either of my boys had ever been at age two. I was busy cleaning house. She was busy destroying, Lily style. She began her quest for the devil in the laundry room. She took the cat box and while dragging it through the house took out fistfuls of kitty litter and the other substance that goes in kitty litter all over the main floor. Take a moment and try to picture it in all it's glory.

I come out from cleaning the master bath, I scream out RUBBY! She gives me a look of 'whatcha lookin at fool' and saunters off. I get this all cleaned up and just as I'm taking the vacuum back to the laundry room I hear an evil giggling. The kind of which are only made while evil deeds of mess making are begin performed. Lily has taken our fifty pound bag of dog food and dumped it somehow all out onto the floor. Then she proceeded to lay on top and wildly roll around in it while using her arms to spread it out to as far as she could manage (she quite talented). I could give her away at this point.

Those who know me know I love tidy. Oh, how I heart tidy. And I was in the middle of doing my weekly tidy (chores) when I got this and the cat little cleanup patrol added to my list. Thank you.

That's it. Out she must go. Into the backyard, out where children and dogs belong. I locked the door and went about cleaning up dog food pebbles. She had been outside for six minutes. Upon my return I couldn't believe my eyes. She had de-potted all of my HUGE patio pots. All six which are about a two and a half feet diameter at the top, which hold my blessed; lime tree, cilantro, rosemary, parsley, basil, thyme, oregano, lemon trees. I wish I would of had the state of mind to take a picture so you can get the image of how huge they all were and what a freakin disaster it was. Plants/trees everywhere and Lily and the dog tearing them apart. Heaven help me. Actually, Lily is the one who really needs help because that girl is so past being on thin ice.

Lunch time, thank heavens for leftovers. I heat her's up, serve it up with a nice cup of water and even kiss her on the cheek because I'm the forgiving sort. And do you know what that child o mine did. She took a look at the lunch, then at me, then picked up her lunch and flung it so far that it landed all over the walls/couch in the next room over.

Ring ring...devil calling, "Lillian Madison Mead your doing just great."

The sun'll come out tomorrow.

Yesterday was such a bad day! I went to bed and felt so bad about myself and my mothering. I was short-tempered and impatient (my natural state is impatient, some kind of birth defect, but this was more than usual).

I worked for seven straight hours to get the house clean from the weekend-mess-making that we did around here. Lily was just a TOTAL pill while I was cleaning up (a post about that to come). I tried to keep our new kitty alive (wary of Lily who likes to strap things into strollers . . . especially kitties). Then the kids got home from school.

I was exhausted and didn't get my usual nap (I tend to be quite cranky without it). I tried to do my self-soothing talk and not take out my bad mood on those I love most, but I made a critical error and took the kids to Target (at 6pm no less). It was late in the day, I was very close to the edge and I was exhausted -- a recipe for disaster. While I was on the sheets aisle, the boys got into a scuffle that ended with Luke falling down and crying. Got the picture?

So, what did I do? Did I:

a) take a deep breath, imagine myself stepping back and giving them a good kick in the rear end;
b) tell them I was taking away their current favorite toy for five months;
c) send them to bed with no dinner; or
d) do a somewhat animal-like, primal scream as loud as I could for about four seconds.

If you answered "d," you are correct! At Target. Yes, I had a moment. At Target (not WalMart). And guess whom came right around the aisle just as my moment was ending. A sweet friend of mine who has only one child. Yes, she didn't understand, but she still loves me.

Anyway, after all of this, I still had to take Owen to his basketball tryout. I went to the church and there were literally 200 people ahead of me. I wanted to cry. Lily was in my arms trying desperately to "fall" out of them so she could go right in there. I got in line, doing my deep breathing exercises. I couldn't leave, this was the only night for tryouts and Owen really wanted to play, so be there we must.

We live three minutes from this church. It was seven o'clock by this time, bedtime. Just then my brain hatched an idea. Take the two little ones home and leaved Owen there to go through the stations by himself. He loves to be grown up and independent so I told the lady in charge that I was having a nervous breakdown (thanks mom for the priceless and spot on saying) and explained that I would be back in fifteen minutes. She gave me a hug and said no problem. Lord, bless her! Got back, picked up Owie, went home and tucked him into bed, promising that tomorrow would be better.

And it was. We all played outside today for two hours, riding bikes, doing sidewalk chalk, playing basketball and eating Popsicles (we are in Texas after all -- it's 75 degrees outside . . . he he he). It was good. I felt good. Better. I was outside sitting on the driveway when I had this thought: motherhood is composed of days, more good than bad, some really bad, and some really, really good . . . we had a really, really good one today. Thank goodness!

New family members, I just can't help myself.

Here I am with some girlfriends at our church's harvest festival, looking sassy. I'm including this in this post because I'm super awesome. And I know it. Why, the brazen self proclaiming? Because I am for one; and two I let the kids (and Chad) get a new kitty this weekend. See, I told you I was awesome.
We have yet to name kitty. I think Garfield would be good, Owen likes Cooper, and Chad is partial to Topper. So, we'll see. Kitty is on loan to us till we see if I'm allergic to this kind of Kitty, fingers crossed.
Because everyone loves kitty. I love kitty too, because it brings SO much joy to all the babies I love so, that's why I do this (in case you were wondering why I've lost my mind and gone and gotten that same kind of animal that tried to kill me, literally). I'm sure this will be a check on the "things done good while on earth" rooster. It'd had better.

Where's baby?

As I was driving into the garage today I noticed something above the one car garage. It was a leg. But what would a leg be doing in the gutter. And whom does it belong to?
Baby. That's who it belongs to. How baby got into the gutter and how long she's been there is probably a better question for two little boys.

Mead Halloween festivites.

The aftermath of trick or treating. Chad and I slept in (which we do every Sunday:)). We woke up to find the kids all in the dining room sorting there candy to kind, size and likability. Lily was of course gorging herself on sorted candy.
Friday night at neighborhood Halloween party. Lily dedicated herself wholly to the bounce houses. I don't have a single picture of the boys from this party, they were far too busy playing/running around with their friends.
Trick or treating with friends the Fullmer's and the Andersons. Pretty much walking around with our friends telling the kids to "wait up". After trick or treating a bunch more families came over to the Fullmer's dance party. The adults ate yummy food, chatted and danced while the kids ran wild all over the cul-de-sac. Very good times.
Luker with some of his spoils.
Oh wait! I do have one pick from Friday nights party. Here is Owen on the dance floor getting down. That's my boy. I don't have a pic from Saturday's dance party but just know that I was getting down at the Fullmers. Lily and I rocked that dance floor (technically it was the driveway but Jeff brought out all his DJ equipment so it felt pretty official). I mean if there is a strobe light a going I'm there.
Snow white (with pigtails of course) painting her pumpkin Friday night.
Seeing Lily adoring herself in her costume added years to my life. It just did my heart good. I put her costume on and she was literally dying at how she looked. She ran to the mirror in my bedroom and kept exclaiming, "ohhhh Rubby!" (her nickname). I tell you. Even the boys were dying at how cute she/the whole thing was.