Monday, June 29, 2009

And just like that...

(I promise this is not turning into a once a week blog. Mostly.)

So blah, blah, blah...we've been busy and preoccupied all week with house hunting and I've been friggin' exhausted every night, with barely enough energy to pull up Facebook and see who scored 50,000 on some game I never heard of. Tonight, however, we have reached a turning point so I feel somewhat compelled to let ya'll know...

...we found a house!

We'll be closing on our new house on the same day as our current house: July 27.

A lot of people ask me if I've begun packing...the answer is still no. I just felt weird starting the packing process when we didn't have a destination. Really, though, we did: it's out the door of this house... But now I guess I don't have much of an excuse.

I'm sure I'll post some details or pics or something about the new house soon. Or late. You know me by now...

Monday, June 22, 2009

May a rock come flying through our window

If I talk to one more neighbor about our move I'm going to scream. Since our house sold and the "sale pending" sign now graces our lawn, you would think we were deserting the friendliest and most considerate cluster of people on Earth.

It's possible, however, that we are.

At church Sunday, I guess word has gotten out and some people are talking about our move instead of Fr. Jack's sermon...sorry FJ. Since we're only two houses down from the church parking lot, I guess people can't help but notice. A couple of concerned souls live in the neighborhood and they did nothing but gush about how badly they don't want us to leave. This, added to the fact that there's a house for sale in the neighborhood that very nearly suits us but we're still discerning it, and the other fact that we visited several very good possibilities over the weekend but nothing seems just the perfect fit...add a very kind woman's words about how much she loves midtown, our church, this neighborhood...'s enough to cause a bit of overwhelm in my head. And it did. And the tears came. In the middle of the parish hall during coffee and donuts. The poor woman, whose name I don't even know, politely asked if this was a bad time for me. "Um," I told her between sobs, "I'm fine."

I just thought the decision would be a lot when I bought MY first house without even looking at any others, and how I felt when I said "I do" to Pete. (After all, as much time as I'll be spending in our new abode, it's nearly as monumental as choosing my husband. Seriously!)

So I collected myself and the poor woman gave me a very warm hug, and I was fine. And all that occurred pretty much under Pete's nose but he was oblivious thank goodness, as he was gathering napkins and drinks for the boys.

I just really love this neighborhood, which is why it's taken us about two years to make the move to move. I had no idea, however, just how hard it would be. Other than the fact that we need a little more room and a backyard, we've been incredibly happy here.

Actually it would be easier if there was something that we didn't like about the neighborhood, like Pete's truck getting vandalized or a stray bullet grazing our mailbox. Then, my goodness, my difficult decision would become very easy, no?!

So if you have any grievances against the's the time to take your revenge. And put my mind at ease.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Somebody pass me a popsicle...

...and a swimming pool. With ice cubes floating in it.

Friday, June 19, 2009

A new job for french onion dip

If you happen to buy some french onion dip, and if you happen to have some leftover after your event (since who buys that stuff if you're not celebrating something or going on vacation), and if you happen to then make mashed potatoes for dinner, reach your stirrin' spoon into the dip and get a dollop of it. Then add a little butter to the potatoes and just a little salt and milk, and then stir in the dollop of dip.

Then watch the potatoes sing and dance. Yum!

Probably could have even done with the butter.

Baby steps, people....

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The hunt

(Big sigh)

We have some targets for a new house we're visiting this weekend. None of them really get me all giddy inside...but I might as well face the fact that "giddyness" would come from a new 3000 s.f. home in Midtown Tulsa. Which won't happen as long as lots in the area go for $200,000. That's LOT. Meaning, grass and dirt. I doubt the city would let us pitch a tent there...

So here we go...we're tired of perusing ads and doing drive-by's. We're ready to start kicking tires and find the Hometeam a new dugout.

But these realtors and their ads...I'm getting wise to them. If you should be on the lookout for a home of your own, beware the terms below. I'm all for creative writing, but during my home search I've come to find out one has to look past the flowery phrases and see the house for what it is:

1. "patio home" No yard.

2. "move-in condition" My goodness, this one really bothers me. Some people think could move-in condition means functioning light switches.

3. "must see" What could they mean will happen if we don't see it?

4. "granite" Granite seems to be so desirable these days that some ads just print the word with no "kitchen" or "bath" behind it. I started to wonder if our house would ever sell since we don't have any granite anywhere in it. Maybe this isn't a misleading term, just bothersome to me.

5. "vintage" Old.

6. "vintage tile" Old tile.

7. "newer roof" What the heck does this actually tell me??? That it was newer than the first roof, which was replaced ten years ago?

8. "new price" I love this one: why don't they just put "reduced"? I've never seen a "new price" be more than the original listing price.

9. "as is" Translation: "we aren't fixing it up before we sell it so don't ask."

10. "formal dining" Means it has a room the Hometeam will never use.


12. "cutie," "charmer," "good bones." Yes, I've seen all these terms in ads recently. Perfect if you're buying a cocker spaniel.

I'm starting to have flashbacks about when I was a marketing writer and I was always trying to spin words to make the reader get a warm fuzzy inside about whatever I was selling at the time.

...guess it takes one to know one.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


As of July 27, we'll be leaving this house.

And going where? We have no idea yet.

That crystal ball thing...that would be worth a lot to me right now.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Tee-d up

Tonight was Mickey's first tee-ball game. I feel like I played the thing myself...or maybe I just smell like it. My job(s):

Take pictures, cheer him on, keep Alex from throwing balls on the field, meet a parent (and promptly forget her name), sign a sheet to bring snacks next, um, sometime, feed Alex candy, then crackers, then help him wash it down with water, take more pictures, play catch with Alex, call Pete who's in Chicago to give him an update, fish orange Tootsie pop out of the dirt and convince Alex it's no longer good, call seasoned sports mom sister for tips on how to get through the next twelve years of this...

...and possibly realize the evening wasn't about me. Drat.

Mickey did have a great time, in spite of his learning curve:

"Mom, is there going to be another team there?"
"Can I have my snack?" (After each inning...)
"Am I going to be catching or hitting tonight?"

"Is there a door to go down to the field?" (Yes, honey, in about 20 years.)

Notice the focus...not even distracted by the little girl with the pink glove.

(Alex! Stop distracting the players!)

Every batter looked like a Bobble Head of himself.

I'm sure this guy was imparting tee-ball wisdom unto my little boy. Or maybe just "...hit the ball, kid, so we can all go home..." son obliged.

...and made it home.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Right now.

Right now both boys are sleeping. Right now it's 3:00 in the afternoon.

Both of them napping has not happened since...wait, when did it happen last? Amazing how those memories fade so quickly.

I don't want this to fade. I want to remember their little sleeping faces. I want to remember when this homemade blanket was Alex's favorite, and that Mickey loved that soft Ty puppy dog.

I know when they grow up they won't be soft and snuggly anymore. Their soft hands will grow calloused from play and their feet will all of a sudden smell. I'm going to wonder pretty soon if I'm giving them enough independence, if they still want to be tucked into bed...if they get embarrassed when I ask for a kiss goodbye at school.

I know all that is going to transpire, like an inevitable wave over my life. I know it. And when it does they'll be little people I love even more than I do now. And they'll still be making me laugh and cry. Their little kid personalities will develop them into big kids, and I'll love them then, too.

But I just want to savor this, for right now.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Fun-dant with Brittany

We just returned from my niece's graduation in Texas...which was Texas-sized, heh, heh. She and 570 or so classmates made the transition from little people to "big people," as their class Valedictorian so eloquently proclaimed. Ahem...

So that was all good and fun and we all congratulated Rachel a bazillion times. In addition to this very momentous event, another major happening occurred:

I got my hands on some fondant.

You know, the fancy-schmancy stuff of beautifully decorated cakes and pastries. Rachel's sister Brittany, who I believe has made it her own mission in life to make her two sisters feel special, thought her graduation was a great reason to decorate cupcakes with this magic sugary blanket-y stuff.

(And because she doesn't know any better, she also turned my sons loose with jars of sprinkles. She's the Fun Cousin, believe me.)

Back to the fondant: if you've never used it before, pretend you're in preschool again and you're playing with Play-doh, only you can eat this stuff without getting sick.

It comes in a white blob in a canister, and all you do is tear off what you need, add food color, and knead the color in. And if you're also thinking about people in your life who have wronged you, this kneading thing can be very therapeutic. Then you get to cut it with a sharp knife! I'm tellin' ya...who needs to pay $100 an hour for a shrink?

Brittany's very ambitious plan was for each cupcake to illustrate something Rachel had done or a club she'd belonged to. So some of these won't make much sense to you, but I can tell you they were special for Rachel. Brittany called it an "edible scrapbook..." Did I mention she's creative with words, too? I'm trying hard to still love her. And that's without mentioning her passion for photography.

(Here's the illustrated version of our day. I'm posting these pics in random order, though, because Blogger in all its free-to-use glory, makes it very painful to change the order of graphics. So in order to get this post up before August, I'm posting it anyway. Just scroll up and down a bunch of times if that bothers you.)

Because it wasn't enough to fondant her way through the day, Brittany thought we could use some candy graduation caps. Oh, my! She'd tell you to thank Bakerella for this delicious idea.

I'm thinking Brit and her sister Lauren could build my boys a playhouse out of this stuff.

Sweet Lauren...who also doubles as a lifeguard, who has friends who are lifeguards who came over that day, and lifeguarded the boys in their pool while I fun-danted. Try making verbs of nouns's a blast.

The buttercream backups. Yum!

Could she be having second thoughts about letting them have the sprinkles?

Ambitious Brit whipping up a mess o' buttercream, which we used for gluing on the fondant. And that's a Kitchen Aid mixer...isn't everything in the kitchen more fun with one of these?

It only looks like a mess. It's really the workspace of pastry wizards. Who need coffee in order to work their magic.

...and computers.

I did this one...yay for me! And for tiny fondant cutters! The University of Texas at Arlington is where Rachel is headed next...and apparently 2013 is when we'll see her in another graduation ceremony. If cupcakes are involved I'll be there for sure.

I think Brittany's nails were manicured when she started the day. She's a hardworkin' girl...

...who always does just a little extra.

This post will be entered in June's Write Away contest at Scribbit. She's my friend who writes from Anchorage, Alaska. Ya'll head over there and cool off...