Category: Lists (page 1 of 4)

If we were getting together for lattes today, here are five things I’d share with you.

1. I accompanied Julia’s second grade class on their field trip to a local museum earlier this month, and people, it was incredible. Not only did she want to sit with me on the bus, she held my hand most of the way and in front of her friends! My beating heart blew up like a balloon and bulged from my chest like a lovestruck cartoon character. It’s doing it even still! But that could be because I had spicy tacos. Also, I’m drinking Diet Coke again. (I know.) It’s okay to feel disappointed in me. The dangerous chemicals have eaten away the part of my brain that cares! Okay, not really. Actually, I care very much. I’m just more disappointed in my weight gain, but not quite as disappointed as I am in my ability to keep Phoebe out of the litter box without shouting, “NO!” It seems I’m only capable of 236 gentle redirections before I blow up and loudly use the n-word. (I follow it up with a “thank you,” though, if that counts for anything.) And anyway, it worked. She got out of the litter box and sat in the cat water dish instead.

2. Lucy was in a great mood this morning after a particularly rough night, so I said to her, “Wow, you’re being very kind today. Where’d that come from?”

“I don’t know,” she shrugged. “I just put it on this morning like clothes!”

Gosh, wouldn’t it be great if we could all put on kindness clothes?

3. Today I’m wearing black nail polish. (Not metaphorically.) I hadn’t been out in the world more than twenty minutes before I was asked if I was “feeling dark” and, “going through a Goth phase?” This could be yet another look I’ve had to learn the hard way that I cannot pull off. (Toe rings!) (Choker necklaces!) (Ironic t-shirts!) (Platinum blonde hair!)

4. The pathway leading to the doors of my house was looking pretty bad.

Jungle Path

But now?


Not too bad!

Looking good, right?



Thanks to my helpers.

5. “I missed you all year when I went to school.” – Julia, from my homemade Mother’s Day book which also included a list of 10 Things That Don’t Make Sense in the World

So, what would you tell me?

What I’m Watching

Over the summer, we didn’t have television service. We just couldn’t afford it. Who watches T.V. in the summer, anyway? Instead, we played outside and read books. But then, the air grew cold and I knew the chance that I’d go all Jack Torrence was pretty high without it.

All work and no T.V. makes Leslie a moody girl.
All work and no T.V. makes Leslie a moody girl.
All work and no T.V. makes Leslie a moody girl.
All work and no T.V. makes Leslie a moody girl.

We still can’t afford it, but Jack Torrence didn’t make it out of “The Shining” alive and I value my life. You see, I love television. I can admit it. I realize some people couldn’t think less of me after this acknowledgement. I also love fast food and pop, use Splenda and, sometimes, choose not to buy organic. And for some, this is where my post probably ends. But if you love television or maybe just me, you may care to stick around for the ten shows I’ve set my DVR to record. Here they are in no particular order.

1. America’s Next Top Model. Tyra Banks is a genius and not unlike the dudes that came up with World of Warcraft, because this show is addictive. I know this because I’ve lost an afternoon or two after flipping to an ANTM marathon just for something to watch while I fold clothes.

2. Sister Wives. I’m completely intrigued by this show. Polygamy? I just don’t get it. I think I’ll have to watch it until I do.

3. The Big C. This is my new favorite. You’d think a show about cancer would be a big bummer, but it’s not. And you might not think it has anything to do with you, but what parent hasn’t considered how their presence or absence effects the people they love? This show speaks to me. I love Laura Linney and the theme song.

4. Community. If you want to know how funny this show is, consider this: Joel McHale isn’t the funniest part. That’s saying a lot.

5. American Idol. Oh, I know. Most of America is totally over it. But I love American Idol and I will always watch it. And fantasize about how I’d probably be a star if the show existed when I was a kid.

6. The Office. You know a show is good when they can get someone like Kathy Bates to do a sitcom.

7. Hell’s Kitchen. I love Gordon Ramsey, especially when he yells. I’m not sure what that says about me.

8. The Ultimate Fighter. This show records the same night as America’s Next Top Model. Dave likes to believe that I watch it with him as a sacrifice for our relationship. Don’t tell Dave, but the truth is, I’d watch it anyway. And I have a rock hard crush on GSP. I just watch it with Dave so he’ll sit through ANTM with me.

9. United States of Tara. It’s about a crazy family. They might be crazier than mine. There’s not much I can say that about. And, it has a great theme song.

10. The Soup. This is the second time Joel McHale is on my list. Because he’s my boyfriend. And CHICKEN TETRAZZINI!


It’s the last day of 2008, so I thought I’d take a moment to share with you some things I’ve learned over the past year.

  1. Having two children isn’t twice as much work as having one. It’s more than that. Much, much more. And that much more if you have a puppy, too. Particularly if the puppy weighs more than your grandma.
  2. Having another child doesn’t double the love in your heart. It’s does more than that. And though less than a year may have passed since that child came into your life, it won’t feel like it. It’ll feel like she’s been a part of you forever.
  3. Being an only child may not be as awesome as you thought it was, because siblings are useful and parents are a handful.
  4. A good grandpa is impossible to replace.
  5. So is a good husband.
  6. Even though you’re trying to save money, there are some things that are still worth paying for. Like fabric softener and lean meat. Also, dog obedience training. Or counseling.
  7. Forgetting to feed 27 hungry cats is a mistake that’ll make you understand the victims in any zombie movie.
  8. Four-year-olds are smarter than you thought.
  9. Fish are ridiculously fragile. You can kill them with a hard stare.
  10. True friends are easy to discern. They read your blog, adopt your sock monkeys and rave about your buckeyes. They’re willing to invest in anything you put yourself into. And some days, that’s the very reason you choose to get up and live.

Happy New Year, readers. Thank you for being you.

A Bulleted Post: The Overwhelmed And Floopy Version

I’m feeling all out of control, lately. Like there’s just too much I’m responsible for and I can’t quite get my arms around it all. So, while I’m exhausting myself trying to keep up, it appears that I’m doing everything half-assed. And I’m not a half-assed person at all. I’m a big ass person. So, it’s frustrating.

When I feel like this, me no put words together good. But I’ve got stuff to tell you and requests to make. So, it’s bullets. Let’s go!

  • I started a Daily Haiku feature for my blogdiggity space, here. Check it out, yo.
  • I’m still begging looking for This Is Motherhood submissions. Show me love, show me life. Baby, show me what it’s all about. You’re the only one that I ever needed. Show me love and what it’s all about. Alright. (See the italics? That’s me singing to you. Do you see how heartfelt my plea is? Singing!)
  • My husband has a mega-crush on Kellie Pickler. He is trying to deny it in spite of this incriminating evidence written in response to his friend’s admission that, “I’m secretly in love with Kellie Pickler so it really doesn’t matter what she says. That’s just me, though. I’m such a sucker for incredible looking blondes . . . dumb or not. I will say that my wife has roughly 4 million more brain cells than Pickler but . . . ”

    And David writes:

    “Pickler is something, isn’t she? The wife is watching me so I had better just leave it at that. LoL.”

    Doesn’t that tell you he has thoughts about her that are impure in nature, so much so that he doesn’t want me to know them? If your answer is yes, do me a solid and go let him know. If your answer is no, then move along. Nothing to see here.

  • I agreed to make cookies for the reception following Julia’s piano recital this weekend. What kind should I make? I’m looking for a kick ass recipe that will make people want to crown me the Goddess of Cookie Making. Any suggestions?
  • It’s been a while since I did a video blog. Is it time for another one?

  • Alright Cool Kids. That’s it for me. Over and out.

Bullets! With Butterfly Wings*

  • My favorite post titles come from songs. Like this one. It’s a spin on Bullet With Butterfly Wings* by Smashing Pumpkins. You know, “Despite all my rage I’m still just a rat in a cage!” My spin on the lyrics would be: “Despite all my whining I’m still just a pregnant woman in a bloated body!!” Which explains why I’m only a rock star in my bathroom.
  • Today, my hands are so swollen, I cannot wear my wedding ring. (Sorry fellas! I’m not single, just retaining water.) I think I would feel less naked without a shirt than I do without my ring.
  • One week from today, I will no longer be pregnant. And hopefully you will find this space filled with an adorable photo of my just-born baby girl. Because my hospital room comes with Wi-fi and my husband comes with a camera. There’s a laptop involved, too.
  • e-mailed me because someone signed my guestbook today. They were real excited to tell me that 11 people have signed my guestbook in the past year. They told me to click to “uncover the mystery” and find out who has signed. I clicked and they didn’t tell me. They said I had to pay them to find out. Stupidheads.
  • Julia feels that it’s important for everyone to know that mosquito and burrito are words that rhyme. Also, Love Is A Battlefied is sung by Snow White.
  • I feel that it’s important for everyone to know that the only reason Julia is awake at 11:50 p.m. (and eating a popsicle) is because she’s been sick for the past day or so.

You Are Here In My Blog And My Links Will Go On And On

Well, The Haiku Buckaroo Contest (Second Edition) is almost over. It’s okay to cry. Ah, Haiku Buckaroo. Good times, folks. Good times. But let us not close the book on this poetic chapter in blogdom without paying tribute to the benevolent forces that made it all possible: The Haiku Buckaroo Contest Sponsors.

Here’s how this post is gonna go: I’ll link you up to our sponsors. I’ll write up a little something about them, but I’ll try to keep it brief, because the whole point is for you to go and visit them. That’s right, peeps. I’m sending you away from my blog, because these people deserve your attention more than me today. (But, I do hope you’ll come back tomorrow. I’m guessing you will to see who wins the contest. But then, I hope you come back the day after that. And then again and again. Because I really like you.)

So, let’s get to the linky love.

  1. Twenty Five Days To Make A Difference. Wanna be inspired? Just clink that link. This blogger has dedicated a year of service to a variety of different charities. She encourages others to support those causes by running monthly contests her readers may take part in on her blog. AND SHE’S TEN! I’d recommend starting with her About page. Click. Read. Participate!
  2. Bananas and Toddlers. Mother of three adorable children. Etsy Goddess. This blogger is one creative woman; she can make anything! After cruising her archives, I have to tell you, I’m in awe. I just kept thinking, “How does she do it all!?!?” and “Why didn’t I start reading her sooner?” She’s simply amazing. Check her out!
  3. This Simple Life. Toni’s place is the Zen Garden of my daily blog walk. This devoted wife and unschooling mom of two offers a gentle reminder of what is important in life. And she does it with the kind of grace I only wish I had. She shares her life through her blog in a way that make me say, “What does she know that I don’t?” It keeps me coming back for more. And any mother-to-be should check out her About Birth series – it’s a priceless resource.
  4. Dirty Little Secret. I’ll never forget the first time I bought a Cosmopolitan Magazine. I was a pre-teen and had saved my allowance to procure it, then ran home, sprawled out on my bed and dove in, sucking up every juicy nugget of information, from the practical to the racy. It was awesome – like chocolate for my brain. This blog makes me feel the exact same way. Don’t miss this click. Can you really resist brain chocolate, anyway?
  5. Soccer Mom in Denial. She says of her blog, “While really wanting to call it Fag Hag Hiding in the Suburbs, these are just the musings of a working mom.” I think it’s more than that. If we were playing a word association game and you shouted, “Soccer Mom in Denial,” I’d reply with “Activist.” She’s a woman with a desire to create meaningful change in the world. Whether she’s doing it through her parenting, her work or things like her Day To Read initiative, she writes with a perspective of the world that I admire; she sees beyond the walls of her home and workplace. She also sponsors Music Monday – a brilliant idea I only wish I’d had – and has mad photography skills you can witness at the photoblog she and Jenn in Holland share: Looking Into.
  6. Jenn in Holland. She’s an American wife and mother of three living and working in The Netherlands. She knows lots of words, some even in Dutch, but the one I’d bet she is not familiar with would be ‘enemy.’ You don’t know warmth until you know Jenn. Go ahead and click over there; you’ll feel it burst out of your computer like a ray of sunshine. Be sure to leave a comment. Think about taking part in her Singular Saturday event. And don’t miss her amazing photo contributions at Looking Into.
  7. Jen at A2EATWRITE. She’s a wife, mother and guinea pig enthusiast with a heart for teaching, a talent for writing and a flair for cooking. She’s also a discerning reader, which makes me feel like a million bucks every time she visits my blog. Recently, two of her greatest passions – teaching and writing – came together and had a love child she named The Writing Game. It’s brilliant, just like she is. You won’t want to skip a visit to either of them.
  • Finally, I’d like to point you in the direction of The Original Haiku Buckaroo Jami from not THAT different. She was generous enough to lend a great deal of her time and talent to select the next Haiku Buckaroo. In addition to being a Haiku Master, she’s the kind of person you want to invite to your dinner party (or add to your feed reader) because she always has something interesting to say. Click on over and say hello.

Thanks everyone for making The Haiku Buckaroo Contest so much fun!

Think The Banana Splits Theme Song, Except Replace “La” With “Link!”

My bloggy pals Pam at Bubbles Writes and Kristian at Lessons In Motherhood have been dying to know “six non-important things/habits/quirks” about me. And since writing about me is something I quite enjoy, you’re going to get six things, for each of them.

There were some rules that are supposed to go along with this, but rules schmules. I’m a rebel, ’cause I never ever do what I should. And just because I don’t do what everybody else does, that’s no reason why you can’t give me all your love, so saith The Crystals.

Alright, let’s rock this.

1. Julia picked a booger and wiped it in my hair today. She had seen someone do it on America’s Funniest Home Videos. I did not think it was funny. I’d like to know if you’d be laughing with boogers in your hair, Tom Bergeron! I owe you a wet willy, Sir.

2. I lost a Bloglines subscriber this week which led to a solid afternoon of moping around and singing Air Supply’s “All Out Of Love.” Adieu, fair subscriber. I shall miss you.

3. I’ve never been able to get Feedburner to work for me, so I have no clue how many total subscribers I actually have. It is probably best that I don’t know. I’d become as obsessed with that number as I am with my site statistics. Or my comments.

4. Speaking of site statistics, mine are telling me that many of you are clicking to read the incredible This Is Motherhood column. You know, the one where each month a different mother opens up and lets you crawl inside and see life through her eyes for less than 1,000 words? Yeah, you know.

Well, I just have to pass this Shameless Lions Writing Circle Award that I received from JerseyGirl89 at Dirty Little Secret and Jen at A2EatWrite on to the first two guest columnists – Kerith Collins and Karly. The two of them have lived up to every expectation I had for that column.

Shameless Lions Writing Circle Award

And now I’m supposed to list three writing tips, which I will give to the future This Is Motherhood columnists:

  • Write what you know.
  • Write from your heart.
  • Write with the belief that you have something unique and powerful to say that someone out there is aching to hear.

5. It is my firm belief that the best thing you can give a pregnant woman is a pedicure. Husbands, take note.

6. I love Cadbury Creme Eggs.

7. Dave just asked me, “So honey, have you been keeping up with the political debates?” I replied, “No.” Then he asked, “Why not?” And I said, “I’ve had my head up my blog for three days.” And he laughed a lot for a long time. I’m not sure if it’s because it was funny or because he’s only spent 8 of the past 72 hours sleeping.

8. My friend SusieJ gave me the Excellent Blog Award, which I’d like to pass along to my fellow pregnant bloggers, Sam at Temporarily Me and Mommy the Maid at Ramblings from the Not So Typical Stay At Home Mom.

Excellent Blog Award

9. I often have dreams that I host a big blogging event at my house during which The Polyphoic Spree performs an outdoor concert in our field next to the barn and we all jump and twirl around to Light And Day. It’s like Woodstock. Or Blogstock. Or like this. If it ever goes down, I promise to invite you.

10. Light And Day is the most-played song in my iPod. The second most-played song is an edited version of Light And Day.

11. My psychic abilities are telling me that you really want a link to The Bananas Splits Theme Song. Alright. Here it is.

12. I received a big smackaroo from Jen at A2EatWrite, Jenn in Holland and Michelle at Scribbit.


I’d like to pass it along to each and every one of you…that made it to the end of this post. You deserve it!

In Math, Random Is A Pattern

My bloggy pals Suz and Jan each tagged me for a Random Things About Me Meme; Suz asked for 7 and Jan asked for 8. Since I’m a full-service blogger, I’ll fulfill both requests. That means, I’ll share 15 things. You may feel free to debate their randomness in the comments.

Here we go.

  1. I am left-handed.
  2. When I was in fifth grade, I had a jean jacket covered in pins. You see, I collected the pins. One of them said, “Left-handed people are in their right minds!”
  3. I also had one that said, “I’m not fat, I’m just fluffy.”
  4. And another that said, “When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping” – words that still speak to me today. If I had to choose a motto for my life, that just might be it.
  5. Or maybe “Everybody have fun tonight! Everybody Wang Chung tonight!”
  6. Dave and I could Wang Chung every night, all night.
  7. I can’t think of anything that’s as fun as Wanging Chung.
  8. I had a dream last night that I swallowed my iPod. Then, I felt like I might puke, but I didn’t want to lose my iPod, so I fought the urge.
  9. I fell asleep listening to my iPod last night, which may explain the dream. At least the iPod part. I still have no idea why I swallowed it.
  10. Maybe I drifted off during “I Got The Music In Me.”
  11. I just started to Twitter. You should follow me.
  12. My reward to myself for completing this meme: playing Space Invaders.
  13. I think Space Invaders is the coolest video game, ever.
  14. Although PacMan is perfectly delightful.
  15. I know that you’re wondering how I could possibly rank Space Invaders higher than Guitar Hero on my video game list. My response: Guitar Hero isn’t a game. It’s a way of life.

That is all.

I Ain’t That Average Groupie

About a month ago, Sam over at Temporarily Me handed out The Nap Warden award to some “great blogs” she’d been reading. And, guess what?

Nap Warden Award

I was on the list!

When it happened, I was all, “Holy Frick! Sam is like a real blogger. Like, a good one. And she’s been reading my little blog? I had no idea!” I did a happy dance, then left a comment about how she made me feel all gushy and twirly. Then, I let her request for a list of my favorite blogs sit on my to-do list until now.

So, here I give you a list of the blogs I just have to read the moment they pop up in my feed reader. I guess you could call them my favorites.

1. Dooce. A mommy blogger without a subscription to Dooce is like a stock broker without a Wall Street Journal.

2. Finslippy. The most entertaining blog. Period.

3. Fluid Pudding. Angela gives me that 2:30-in-the-morning-conversation-and-we’re-getting-really-giddy kind of feeling. I love that.

4. Wiping Up Snot. I know, I know. Karly is on every list I ever make and you’re all like, “Enough with the PDA!” because I am totally blowing in her blog’s ear right now. But Karly is my favorite. I love Karly. I’m 100% positive that she’s my soul mate. And she just moved over to her own domain. If you consider that, this is like the first time I’ve ever linked to her. Plus, if you go to her new blog address right now, you will see that I am her TOP COMMENTER. Funk dat!

5. Dirty Little Secret. I’m not sure if I’m just falling in love or if I am witnessing greatness in the making, but this blog gets better and better with every entry.

6. Bubbles Writes. I’m lovin’ this girl. She’s real and she can write!

7. The World According To Suz. If I had met Suz in high school, I would have made it my mission to become her BFF. I would copy everything she did and have a secret crush on her. Kind of like the crush I have on her now, except it would be secret.

8. SusieJ. Think Goddess of Motherhood and you’ve got SusieJ. She’s exquisite. She has the kind of blog I wish I wrote.

Okay, I gotta stop somewhere and this is it. It’s hard to make lists like this! Someone awesome is always left out. (If you believe you are the awesome one that has been left out, feel free to submit a complaint in the form of a Baby Got Back song parody. It can be a video or just lyrics. Whatever.)

Here! Hop In My Time Machine. Let’s Go!

Veronica, one of my newest blogging pals, has tagged me for a meme. The Crazy 8 Meme! Yeah, yeah, yeah. I did it before. But this time, I’m doing it with a twist! It’s the The Crazy 8 Meme – High School Version. Specifically, my senior year of high school.

Awesome idea, isn’t it? I know! It wasn’t mine. Michelle at Scribbit did it first after being tagged for the same Random Things meme a few times. She did a high school or teenage version, which was just brilliant. So, I copied stole was inspired by her idea and decided to apply it here.

Now, here we go! Back to 1994.

High School Graduation 1994Things I’m Passionate About:
1. My boyfriend
2. My hair
3. Becoming a neurologist
4. Beverly Hills 90210
5. Well-defined calf muscles & a bikini-worthy tummy
6. Pepsi
7. My clothes
8. My hair (I know I said it once, but really, it was very important to me.)

Things I Want To Do Before I Die:
I consulted my Senior Book for accuracy on this one. Here’s what I found listed as my “Dreams and Goals.”
1. Get married
2. Have children (Specifically a boy and a girl, in that order. Yeah, I actually wrote that down.)
3. Visit Ilka in Germany
4. Visit Australia
5. See The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway
6. Own a BMW
7. Design & build my own home
8. Stay married to the same person my whole life. (I went on, at length, about how I never, never, never wanted to be divorced. Oh, how disappointed 17-year old Leslie would be in me. But it’s okay. She doesn’t know what I know.)

Things That I Say Often:
1. I’m sorry. (My nickname could have been ‘Door mat.’ I apologized for everything. I don’t do that anymore.)
2. You go girl!
3. Schwing!!!
4. Does burping count? I did that a lot. I could burp words…so, yeah. I just decided. It counts.
5. Excuse me. (Okay, I burped a lot, but I had manners.)
6. Later. (This was how I said good-bye. I know. I oozed cool. In college it grew into “Check ya later.”)
7. Chica. (I called all my girls Chica. Because I’m hip with a Spanish flair. Or something.)
8. The double pistol finger raspberry (Okay, technically this isn’t something I said, but it was a gesture that included sound from my mouth. And it communicated a specific message. I’m including it.)

Books I’ve Read Recently (Or Am Reading):
1. Pet Sematary by Stephen King
2. The Bible (This is actually the most read book in my life. I’ve read it cover to cover four times and read it daily when I was a high-schooler. You know, preacher’s daughter and all.)
3. The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty
4. The Entity by Frank De Felitta
5. Christy by Catherine Marshall
6. The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
7. The Tiger Lily by Shirlee Busbee – This book inspired many a night of self-love. It’s very sexy. And I’ll even let you in on a very naughty secret. But first, Mom, Dad & Grandma – close your eyes and hit scroll. Okay. Here’s the secret: I used to read the sexy parts of this book to a guy – a guy that was not my boyfriend, but oh, I wish he had been – over the phone. In a seductive voice. It was really out of character for me as I was, truly, a pretty good girl. It was the effect of that book. Damn, it was steamy. And that guy. He was steamy, too.
8. Story of O by Pauline Reage – If you thought the last book was scandalous, I’ll give you a moment to pick your jaw up off the floor. You’re probably wondering how this book could be on the same list as The Bible. But, if you really think about when you were a teenager, you may understand. Teenagers are curious and searching and discovering who they are. This was all part of that. And part of dating an older guy.

Songs I Can Listen To Over And Over :
(And I’ve linked ’em up to YouTube so you can listen to them over and over, too!)
1. The Sign by Ace of Base
2. I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) by The Proclaimers
3. Can’t Help Falling In Love by UB40
4. Mr. Jones by Counting Crows
5. I’d Do Anything For Love by Meatloaf
6. No Rain by Blind Melon
7. Two Princes by The Spin Doctors
8. What’s Up by Four Non Blondes

What Attracts Me To My Friends:
1. Sense of humor
2. Fun-loving spirit
3. Shared experiences
4. Openmindedness
5. Fashion sense
6. Good hair
7. Loyalty
8. Trust

Things That I Learned That Year:
1. A great tan can make you look thinner. And hotter. I mean, freakin’ hot.
2. A girl can only live so long on a diet of plain baked potatoes and Diet Pepsi.
3. A true friend will let you puke in the back of her car and never say a word.
4. You’re never too old for a slumber party.
5. Being kind is always worth it.
6. Gullibility can be a real character flaw.
7. The church can often have very little to do with God or righteousness.
8. Never assume you’ll have time to fix something later. You never know when you’ll say good-bye to someone for the last time.

This time, I’m tagging my husband, so he can quit whining that I never tag him. Or link to him. And he can see how challenging this meme really is.

Have fun, Grimm. *insert maniacal laughter here*

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