Month: October 2006 (page 2 of 4)


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This is my daughter Julia sitting in front of the fireplace we are dreaming of lighting.

When we bought our house a couple months ago, the seller informed us that the brand new propane fireplace was ready to go.  All we had to do was hook up the propane.  It sounded easy enough.  So, yesterday we went to Lowe’s and bought a propane tank, an adapter kit and got excited about having a warm fire at the end of the day.  But, it wasn’t so easy.

After hooking it all up, we found there was a leak at the piece that created a join between the propane tank and the hose.  We worked for hours trying to resolve it, but were only successful in stripping the tank’s nozzle along with our last bit of sanity.  By that time, we were too invested to give up.  It had become a quest for fire.  We went back to Lowe’s, with the propane tank and the wacky piece in tow.  We exchanged the propane tank we had bought for another one. It still leaked.  We replaced the piece with another one, the same size. It still leaked. We bought the same piece in varying sizes. It still leaked.

Our futile efforts were finally halted when the Lowe’s store manager, who knew us by name at that point, informed us that it was closing time and politely kicked us out of the store. Tired, hungry and defeated, we went home and sat in front of our fruitless fireplace dreaming of the day it would burn bright, providing our weary souls with warmth and light.  Let’s hope we don’t have to dream much longer.

If This Doesn’t Warm Your Heart, You Are Probably A Robot

Cute Little Kitten

Emily’s kittens have grown so much in the past week!  They are really getting lively and playful and I’m falling helplessly in love with them.  I mean, look at them.  Wouldn’t you?  I don’t know how I’ll be able to give any of them away.

The Hair Is Mightier Than The Sword

Julia had to sit in the time out chair today.  After she served her full two minute sentence, I knelt down in front of her and said, “Julia, do you understand why Mommy put you in time out?”

“Yeah.  I hurta Sam and slama door.”

“Yes.  You were too rough with Sam.  Then you ran from Mommy and slammed the door.”


“Julia, you need to be very careful with Sa-”

“Mom?” she interrupts as she leans in close to my face and touches my chin.  “Where that come from?  Ona chin?”

She pulled at a long, black stray hair on my chin! Okay, I could handle a gray hair on my head.  I would have been alright if it was just food stuck to my face.  But chin hair?  CHIN HAIR?

Just as I was slipping into a spiral of vain insanity, Julia giggled.  The humiliation was too much.  And here’s the thing about humiliation:  it strips away every emotion, every logical thought and leaves you with nothing but the stinging, burning pain of degradation.  I looked at Julia and fumbled with the words to wrap things up because I had a hair to pluck.

After telling her something about being more careful and respect and listen to Mommy, I announced, “Time Out is over.”  She jumped up and skipped off, bouncing and laughing.  I stood there touching my chin.  She supplanted my authority with a hair.

The kid is an evil genius.

Home Improvement

Julia and I are having a great time settling in to our new house.  We’ve had a lot of fun making plans for her bedroom and play room and then bringing them to life together.

Today, we painted an old bookcase my grandfather had made for me when I was about Julia’s age.  Now, it’s hers.  She wanted to make it look like “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.”  Here we are painting it dark blue, like the night sky.  This weekend, we’ll add some white and glittery stars to complete the project.


Painting The Bookshelf!Â

We also made a chalk board for her play room with chalk board paint and an old picture frame.

Julia's Homemade Chalk BoardÂ

And with a lot of help from Grandma, we put in her very own ballet bar and mirrors.

Julia's Ballet Bar and MirrorsÂ

Move over Bob the Builder, here we come!

Suddenly The World Seems Such A Perfect Place

This week, I’ve been renting blog space over at Mom’s Musings (who has been a perfectly delightful host, by the way).  Yesterday, she posted an entry about how she met her husband that has inspired me to do the same.  So, here is my modern day fairy tale.

I visited a palm reader while on Spring Break during my junior year in college.  While the visit was for entertainment, not advice, the reader told me something that would become very meaningful to me.  She said, “Remember, you have more than one soul mate out there.  Everyone does.  Love isn’t just about compatibility.  It’s about compatibility and timing.”

One weekend in July of 2002, I moved in to an 8th floor apartment with a balcony that overlooked a swimming pool and faced another apartment building that was identical to mine.  Many times during that weekend, I stood on the balcony and soaked up the view.  If I could have peeked in to the apartments in the building across from me, particularly the third one from the right on the third floor, I would have seen the man that would be my husband doing the very thing I’d been doing all weekend: moving in.

Dave and I came to live in those apartments because our first marriages were ending.  Having gone from living with our parents to living with our spouses, this was our first experience living on our own.  I guess that’s why it took us a little over a year after our move in date to meet.  We both had a lot to sort out.

During that year, I started a new job and worked as much as I could.  When I wasn’t working, I read a lot of books and watched even more movies.  I did the things I had always done while I was married, but was proving to myself that I could do them on my own.  I also did the things anyone living on their own would do:  walked around in my apartment naked, ate ice cream for breakfast and lived out my rockstar fantasies in front of my mirror each night.  Before long, I started to feel lonely.  My girlfriend Erika suggested that I start dating.  Dating!!!  I had met my first husband when I was 16 years old, so I’d never really been a part of the dating scene.  It seemed so intimidating.  She suggested that I try the Yahoo! Personals.  I scoffed at the idea at first.  I wouldn’t dream of posting a personal ad.  Then again, I wouldn’t dream of being divorced, but there I was.  I saw the success Erika was having making new friends through the personals and decided to give it a try.  What did I have to lose?  Reluctantly, I posted an ad that included a few things like this:

Personal Photo of Me Personal Photo with Sam

I’m an upbeat girl with a kind heart looking for a great guy to share some time with. I fill my days up with the things I love: my family, my job, my crazy cat, and music! I enjoy movies, reading, and laughing.  I’m looking for a gentle man with a good sense of humor to have some fun with! He should be honest, stable and open.

I wasn’t looking for love, just some companionship – someone to come out with me to dinner or the movies.  I didn’t believe I was ready for love, but sometimes you get more than you ask for in life.  Sometimes you’re given more than you think you can handle because someone or something knows better.  I don’t know.  Maybe God looked down one night and saw Dave and I in our respective apartments, belting out “Come What May” from Moulin Rouge into our hairbrushes and decided to put us together.  The song is a duet, after all.

Whatever the reason, Dave responded to my ad along with a few other guys.  The responses ranged from one night stand invitations to near wedding proposals.  Dave’s response was simple: “You seem like someone I’d like to know.  Oh, and you have a great smile.”  We exchanged a few e-mails, then scheduled a time to talk via instant messenger.  During our on-line conversation, we discovered that we were living right across the swimming pool from each other.  After a trip to our balconies for a quick wave, we scheduled our first date.

Our first date was dinner, a softball game, bowling and the best conversation of my life.  We had so much in common, so many similar experiences that seemed to happen at the same time.  It was as if we’d been walking parallel paths that finally merged.  It was then that the words of the palm reader made sense.  Suddenly the world seemed such a perfect place.

And now, we’re living our happily ever after.

* Submitted to The Write-Away Contest hosted by Scribbit.

The Bizarro Husband

David abandons my daughter, cheats on me and shoots up drugs with my mother…in my dreams.

In life, he’s the greatest husband.  He makes me laugh.  He rubs my gnarly feet.  He makes me feel beautiful even when I’m wearing ill-fitting clothes, need a haircut and have a giant zit on my face.  He carries heavy stuff for me.  He makes sure the DVR is set to record LOST for me, even after I accidentally delete his WWE program.  I could go on, but long story short:  He’s a wonderful husband, until I fall asleep.

Once I head off to dreamland, I encounter The Bizarro Husband.  You know, the one that uses me as a human shield when the mall we’re shopping in comes under attack by human-size gerbils with machine guns.

I’d love to dismiss these dreams, but it just isn’t that easy.  Every time I have a dream with The Bizarro Husband in it, I wake up furious with my real husband. Then, my twisted little mind begins to work.  I stare at him lying next to me and think, “If we were under attack, what would he do?  Maybe he really hates my hair and wants to cheat on me,” as if I am somehow in tune with his subconscious thoughts that are only revealed to me in a dream state.

Then the poor man wakes up to a myriad of “what if” questions from an obsessive and crazed wife with bed head and morning breath.  He answers every one of my questions through his sleepy haze, then pulls me to him, wraps his arms around me, kisses the back of my neck and says, “Leslie, I love you.”  For a brief moment, I think that he just may have gotten the raw end of this marriage deal.  Until he says, “So, these gerbils.  Can they talk?”

Yeah.  We deserve each other.


Greeter:  “Hi!  Welcome to Wal-Mart.  Would you like a sticker?”

Julia:  “Yeah!”

Me:  “Oh, that was nice.  What do you say, Julia?”

Julia:  “More stickers?”


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We took this photo while out Geocaching in West Virginia.  The deer wasn’t lost.  We were.

It’s Cold Outside, But I’ve Got The Month Of May

Julia played dress up today.

Julia plays dress up!

Then, she said this thing that made me a gooey puddle of a person because it was just so very sweet.

In Which I Am Rendered Speechless

Dave, Julia and I were listening to Laurie Berkner in the car as we drove to town yesterday.  During the trip, Julia nodded off in her car seat.  A few moments later, the song “Boots” began to play, “B-O-O-T-S, Boots! B-O-O-T-S, Red boots!  In my red boots, in my red boots.  I, stomp around in my red boots.”

Dave started to sing along, but this is what he sang:  “B-O-O-B-S, Boobs!  B-O-O-B-S, Huge boobs!  Oh my wife’s boobs, oh my wife’s boobs.  I, like to fondle my wife’s boobs.”

Me:  “Nice, Dave.  Real nice.  Leave it to you to soil the innocence and sanctity of the “Boots” song.”

Dave:  “You know, “sanctity” has the word “tit” in it.”

Me:  Speechless.

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