Saturday, September 22, 2007

Tropical Depression and Summer Depression!

Well, sorry it's been a few days since my last post. As some of you may know, Tropical Depression #10 decided to make landfall here (not as expected in the above picture -- they're wrong most of the time!). I've spent the last couple of days preparing -- just in case the storm upgraded. These storms get into the Gulf of Mexico and have been known to escalate from a little Tropical Depression into a big 'ole hurricane in a matter of 24 hours. So, I needed to run out and secure the beach condo that we own. Also, there was some preparation to be made here at the house.

In other news, Hubby left two days ago for his "guy" trip to Germany. He and several friends did this very same trip a few years ago. So, in an attempt to relive the moment (I thought only girls did that kind of stuff, heee, heee!), they are all meeting again in Germany . . . to do . . . you know -- actually, I'm not really sure. I mean, what do 5 guys (4 single and 1 married) do in a foreign country?
Anywhoo . . .

**Warning . . . pity party commences below! Proceed with caution!**
I'm hanging in there or here! I'm a bit tired. With hubby's recent surgery and now his trip, I've been filling in. I'm officially the husband, the wife, the mom, the dad, the head chef, the accountant, the property manager (for two properties, might I add), the maid/housekeeper, the family photographer, the receptionist, the marketing director (been working hard on those scrapbooks), the maintenance woman, the landscape designer/maintainer (I've mowed the lawn every Friday - except yesterday when TD #10 reared it's ugly head -- so I did it today -- oh and I did put out my Fall decorations), closet organizer for my two girls (I had to rearrange their whole closet last Tuesday so that we could assess what clothes the girls would need for the Fall), the errand runner . . . and the list goes on. So, with so much to do, how come I feel so inadequate? Why do I feel like Cinderella (before the ball)? And all of those jobs are not a result of hubby's surgery -- I do most of those on a regular basis. I mean, with a husband that is absent half of the month, you do what you have to do. Unfortunately, though, I don't think I do any of the jobs well. Most times I just feel overwhelmed and under appreciated. I can't help but feel that I'm lacking in most areas . . . the house is never clean enough, the laundry basket in NEVER empty, the scrapbooks are a never ending project, the lawn has to be mowed at least once a week and apparently the flowers need more water than I've been giving them -- we've needed some throw rugs out at the condo for weeks and I've just now got around to dropping them off out there (I had a few moments when Hubby was here and the girls were taking a nap -- I ran out there to take care of that place), no! my two year cannot count to 10 -- she knows 2 and 8. Last Tuesday, I ran around here like a chicken with my head cut off . . . cleaning, organizing closets and throwing in a little play time with my children while hubby was laid up in bed. You want to know what I accomplished . . . breakfast, lunch and dinner for four, organized the girls' closet - old/outgrown clothes in bins, cleaned both bathrooms, wrote thank you notes to those who attended and gave gifts at Maddy's birthday party, colored with Maddy, took Maddy and Baby Lulu for a walk, gave both girls a bath and watered the flowers. And to top it all off . . . my hubby said, "Well huney, if you worked like that everyday, I'd have nothing to do around here." He's referring to my #1 pet peeve -- him coming home and picking up after I've already picked up. Let me explain -- if I've cleaned everything but the kitchen sink, the first thing he sees when he comes home is the dirty kitchen sink. And he immediately commences to cleaning it. Which, instead of being a grateful wife and appreciating that he is cleaning the kitchen sink, I immediately take it as a personal attack -- like my house cleaning isn't good enough. And I know I shouldn't -- but I do. So, anyway, I guess I'm going to close my pity party now. Sometimes a girl just needs to vent. After all, my contact today consisted of an 8 month old and a 2 year old.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Who's been sleeping in my bed?

Yes, he's still alive after two weeks . . . can you believe it? And Hubby got a kick out of doing this to me!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Precious days

Last night, Maddy decided (30 minutes prior to bedtime, might I add) that she wanted to color. She pointed to the drawer that holds her crayons and paper and said "Color." So, I obliged. I sat her down on the special carpet (the one that protects our wood floor from her artwork). She took her crayons out of the box and began coloring. Hubby was reviewing some training on his computer and I thought, ah ha! I can finally get something done. So, I quickly walked away from Maddy and over to the table with my computer, hoping that she would continue coloring all by herself. Do you think she did? Nope! She came running to the table where I had sat down and then wanted to sit in my lap. So, I began to negotiate. "But Maddy, Momma got out your crayons. Don't you want to color?" So, she'd get down, walk about 2 steps away and then, when she realized that I was not following her over the the special carpet, she would turn around and come back. "Mama. Mama. Mama." She kept saying it over and over and over. And I kept saying "What? What? What?" Then she would say "Color." And I would say "Yes, please go color." And then . . . it would start all over again. "Mama. Mama. Mama." So, I picked her up and took her to her carpet. I sat her down and began showing her how to color. And you know what? You would have thought I had just said she could have ice cream or something. She looked at and smiled so big. She began to laugh and say "Tree, Mama. Tree, Mama." And I said, "Oh, you want Mama to draw a tree? Ok." And then it hit me. DUH! She just wanted some attention. These are the most precious days MAMA -- wake up! They're going to fly by and before you know it, you'll be begging her to sit down with YOU for a few minutes. So, we colored! We drew trees, and clouds, and grass, and houses . . . you name it, we drew it! And we had a great time.

Maddy . . . thank you for coloring with Mama. I had a great time!

Names . . .

S DSCN7599 M tam-taM uppercase E || Vinings, GA R

This little trick has been floating around bloggityville. You can go here, enter a word and it spells it using pictures. Neat, huh!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Bloggy Giveaways . . .

I've got two giveaways to tell you about. The first is over at Musings of a Housewife. StoryLife offers a huge assortment of personalized photo greeting cards for all occasions as well as collages and complete scrapbook pages. And this week, you can register to win one set of 25 5x7 Photo Cards! In addition, everyone who enters the drawing will receive a coupon code for 15% off your first order. In other words, everyone's a winner!

So, if you want to enter the contest, and you know you do, because this is the perfect time to start thinking about those Christmas cards, go to the StoryLife Idea Gallery and check out all the fun photo card designs. Then go here, and leave a comment on this post telling which one is your favorite. That's all!

The 2nd giveaway is over at Everyday Mommy. She's giving away two pairs of Easy Spirit Wedge Clogs.

“These shoes are a great slip-on with a lot of style (AND comfort) and are perfect for women on the run.”

So, here’s what you do:

1. Leave your comment here and don’t forget your email.
2. The contest runs from September 17th through October 1st.
3. She'll draw two random winners whom she'll contact for a shipping address and shoe size.

Wanna’ double your chances? Link to this post on your blog and she'll enter your name twice.

So get your name in and your post up! Shoobie-doobie-shoe…

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Marriage, a sacred union -- well not anymore!

Ok, I'm on my soap box again. I clicked open my Internet Explorer and by default (which I've never bothered to changed) the MSN homepage popped up. And right there in front of me, the headline read "The Starter Husband: Is it wrong to have a practice marriage?" Huh? Did I read that correctly? Surely they're joking, right? Well, curiosity got the best of me and I clicked the link to the article. And beneath the ginormous title read "You'd never buy a car without test-driving it first right? So why settle into a lifelong marriage before trying one on for size?" And OH.MY.GOSH, they were not kidding. They've written a whole, three page article about this! So, to the best of my ability, I'm going to try and sum up just what in the heck this article said . . . and then you'll hear from me!

The article begins telling the story about Andi (wife) and Tucker (husband). Everything is told from Andi's perspective.

"I'm just really not ready to be committed like this." That's what Andi said to Tucker, her husband of 11 months, after she came home from a crazy day at work two years ago with an overwhelming urge to quit her marriage. Today. Right now. "This just isn't for me."

She watched Tucker crumple against the dining-room table. "I don't understand," he said, over and over. "We're married."

"I was married for like, two seconds." That's what Andi says to me today, her enormous kohl-rimmed blue eyes crinkling as she recounts her drive-through union. "It was literally an entry-level marriage."

Hearing her words, I flinch slightly. We're talking about an event that's supposed to be a turning point in life, and she sounds so cavalier. And yet, Andi is only articulating what the one in five women under age 30 who get divorced every year must thinking. (Really? Can I get a witness? Are there any sane, Christian women under 30 willing to chime here?)

THE REASON FOR THE DIVORCE . . .Within months of promising to love and honor and cherish Tucker forever, she knew she had made a huge mistake. The problem? He was boring. "Wholly uncomplicated," as she puts it. The kind of guy who reads Tom Clancy books on the couch and watches Adam Sandler movies while dreaming of white-picket fences. Going to depressing French movies, leapfrogging over the less ambitious on the company ladder — those were the things that excited Andi. "The idea of spending my life with someone like that seemed stifling," she says. "It finally just got to me that he was so . . . sunny." (Was he beating her? No. Was he mean to her? No. Was he controlling her? No. Oh, yes . . . he was BORING, people! Hey Andi, had you met Tucker prior to marrying him? If so, had you not noticed before that he was boring? Or did he all of the sudden become that way after marrying you? Seriously?!?)

"Oh, my God, it was so easy," she says, exhaling loudly. "I realized, I can get out of this, and he can get out of this, and we can get on with our lives." They sold the condo and split the profits, and that was that. She felt bad about hurting his feelings, but she never doubted her decision. I raise an eyebrow. "Never," she repeats. "I think marriage is the new dating and having kids is the new marriage," she proclaims loudly, as yet another woman dining with her partner turns to stare. "It's true. I wouldn't have married him if I didn't think I could get out of it." ("I wouldn't have married him if I didn't think I could get out of it." Let me just ask you Andi . . . are you a compulsive liar or what? Because if you stated the same vows that I did, you said you would love Tucker, honor Tucker and cherish Tucker until death do you part. DEATH.DO.YOU.PART . . . that means FOREVER!! So, why would you say those words and think "I'm only marrying him knowing that I can get out of this thing when I darn well please"? WHY?)

The author of the article says:
Andi was my introduction to the concept of an icebreaker marriage but certainly not my last. Burning through a starter husband is almost becoming a rite of passage: While newly-marrieds everywhere fear the one-in-two-marriages-fail statistic, the more relevant stat is that while the median age at which a woman first marries is 25, the median age at which she first divorces is 29. In fact, 20 percent of marriages fail within five years, and of those, one in four end within two years. So much for until death do us part. For some, a starter husband is like a starter home — a semi-commitment where you're willing to do some of the surface work, like painting the walls, but not the heavy lifting, like gutting the whole foundation; he's just not a long-term investment. Others compare a starter husband to a first job, where you learn some skills and polish your resume before going after the position you really want.

Elisa, another marriage tester outer says:

My own parents' bitter divorce — many, many years in the making — played out right around the time of my engagement. I knew all too well what the seamy underbelly of marriage looked like, and it had made me incredibly cautious about commitment — it took me seven years of dating my husband before I could consider the concept of "forever."

Still, it's a legacy that cuts deep. "We were both like, We're going to do this right! Divorce is for losers," Elisa says of her and her ex's attitude toward their own parents' divorces. But she knew in the back of her mind that there was a plan B, that marriage was not necessarily a binding contract. And when she realized that she didn't even have a clue what a good marriage looked like, let alone what one felt like, she didn't hesitate to produce her Get Out of Jail Free card. "It was a constantly pitched, keyed-up hell," she says. Their downstairs neighbors left a note on their door: "I don't know what the hell is wrong with you people, but you need to stop screaming at each other." (Elisa, did it ever cross your mind to seek help? Do you think that if you marry again, there won't be arguments? Get a clue honey! There WILL be arguments. There may even be YELLING - gasp!)

It's easy to write these women off as callous or self-absorbed (ahem . . . yes!). And yet on some level, they just might be pioneers: Why stay put in an empty shell of a marriage — an arrangement on paper only — instead of calling it what it is? "This generation is reinventing marriage," says Paul. (This whole paragraph just sickens me. Why get into a marriage that is "an arrangement on paper only." Are these people even using their brains? Where is the taking responsibility for your actions, huh? Who said that marriage needs to be reinvented? Mr. Paul . . . Do you think that God needs our help reinventing marriage? Absolutely not! Marriage is an institution ordained by GOD - not by man!!!)

My opinions:

Can you believe this article? It infuriates me. And unfortunately, this is how many people view marriage. It's nothing more than an agreement than can be broken at any time.

Now I'm not saying that divorce is not absolutely necessary sometimes. I am not against divorce per say. Sometimes divorce is unavoidable. Like for Tucker . . . he didn't want the divorce, Andi did. And it seemed that no matter what Tucker said or did, it wasn't going to change Andi's mind. Hear me: I'm against people going into the marriage intending divorce. Poor 'ole Tucker, he sounded shocked. Andi fully admits in the article that the divorce was not a result of anything that Tucker had done. So, he's an innocent victim of this "starter marriage" syndrome.

I feel sorry for Elisa and Andi. I hope that they have since comed to their senses. But unfortunately people . . . this is the world that we are living in . . . God help us, literally!

Romans 7:2
1 Corinthians 7:10

I know there's more . . . but I'm done now!