May 31, 2005

Am I Sheltering Too Much?

I'm beat, it's the last couple days of school and I'm just flat beat.

So a couple things, first: My blog grandson Spurs is looking for good reads. Feel free to go into his comment section and inundate him. I’m sure he’s tired of my comments as I keep going back and listing more authors.

Second and last and I mean this with the utmost seriousness, so do not hold back... what it the general opinion of South Park as far as what age should be watching this? I think it is adult humor... maybe late teens. I have a horrible, but funny to some, post coming, but I have to know... am I way out of synch thinking that it is NOT AGE APPROPRIATE for my 10 year old?

Now he is not questioning it, but it has come to my attention that he has a kid in his class that has watched this show and is quoting it. One of these vulgar quotes came into my house and left me aghast. (Yes, there is a post coming.)

So I want to know... is this a case where I am once again sheltering my kid too much, or am I making way too big a deal out of this? Yes, my kid knows about sex. And he knows about hookers (he asked). He knows about solicitation (he asked... although perhaps my choice of a sentence could have been better and NOT included hookers). And yes, perhaps I could have spared him the entire wet t-shirt thing, but it was funny and I didn't describe anything! I was very vague! I just told him one day he will like them. Period.

So I want to know. Leave it in the comments. I have to formulate the post. I'm still kind of horrified.

I don't think I'm scarred, but close... although the day I find girl's panties under the front seat of my car, with feminine foot prints on my windshield, will surely top this episode and will more than likely scar me. Yes, that did happen to a woman I know... she had two boys.

UPDATE: My blog bro Andrew of Custos Honor e-mailed me a reply which I urged him to post on his blog. Go see it HERE. This is the perspective of a twenty-two year old man about preparing for boot camp in the Marine Corps.

Posted by Boudicca at 11:13 PM | Comments (16)

May 30, 2005

No Future In Fashion Design

I think my aperçu of the following picture is… “Village Idiot”.

Bones has less fashion sense than I have. At least I know as an adult to stick with solids. I hope he learns that lesson.

His father, the fashion plate, the man who knows all about clothes and who is being pursued by a local department store to do some modeling for them next year (my husband is a very nice looking man… a cross between a young Al Pacino, Andy Garcia, and a bit of George Clooney in the eyes), must have been completely horrified when Bones came out in this attire, fully expecting to wear this to Mass.

Of course he was then given a choice as to what was acceptable, but I burst out laughing when I saw him. I couldn’t help it.

I just would never have thought to put green and blue stripes with orange and white gingham…

(Click to Enlarge... If you dare...)

Fashion Disaster.JPG

Posted by Boudicca at 09:47 PM | Comments (12)

Karnival of the Kids and Stuff

Blog daughter Sissy has Karnival of the Kids up and running! Go see it HERE.

And while you're over there. her word of the week is aperçu.

And take a look at her Linky Lovin' for Zaftig. (Which, will remain for me this week, as I blew it today on way too much strawberry shortcake for dinner tonight!)

Posted by Boudicca at 09:28 PM | Comments (1)

Memorial Day… Another View

An unknown fact… last Memorial Day was a catalyst in getting me to blog. As I said in yesterday’s post, I attend a big service every Memorial Day weekend.

I’ll save the big explanation for my blogiversary, coming up in a week, but I was sitting at last year’s Service, watching all around me, thinking, “I would so blog all of this.”

Last year… it was moving for me.

I have an acquaintance who is in his 80s and a retired Navy Admiral. I love to listen to this man. He is very active politically and is highly educated in history, and not just Naval history, but all history. He has a Masters in it (one of many) from an Ivy League school. He comes to speak to my DAR Chapter frequently on the Middle East. I can never get enough.

I’ve known him for a couple years. He knows how I adore him as the last time I saw him, he had just lost his wife, and I gave him a big hug and said, “You know… if you lived in my neighborhood, I’d have you over for coffee every week and I’d want to hear your views on things.” He laughed and said, “And I accept your invitation!”

I think deep down inside he was thinking, “Whew, Thank God I don’t live near by!!”

Anyway, this service, there were Marines in uniform aplenty, which of course made me very happy. A few men in uniform, noticing my friends and I were in the DAR (we wear pins) came up and told us how much the appreciated some of the things we had done. There was a wonderful speaker. I sat behind the Nam Knights and watching them together touched my heart… again. The wreath laying ceremony once again choked me up.

And then…

They introduced a new widow. Her husband had been killed the month before in Iraq. They honored him and her.

At the end of the service, my friends and I stood off to the side so we could say hello to our Admiral acquaintance, as we always do, and we watched. We watched as the young widow stood… and the military, young and old, retired and active duty, every branch of the service, closed ranks around her.

My throat closed off and my eyes burned. I watched as our Admiral pulled her into a hug, a bear hug and she laid her head upon his shoulder and he patted her back. I watched as every man in uniform, came to her, shook her hand, and hugged her.

I still cry when I remember it. Unless you have experienced the closeness of a military life, I don’t know if you can understand.

I watched it and thought, “People need to know. They need to envision this.”

And it tripped me over to the side of blogging.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:21 PM | Comments (3)

I've Never Been Mistaken for Cinderella

I was conversing with someone today and the subject of ironing came up. I don’t iron. I hate it. Truly hate it. So I don’t. Yeah, sometimes I go places looking kinda wrinkled, but for the most part, I just buy things that are ‘wrinkle free’ or I get them out of the dryer ASAP.

Quilting requires a lot of ironing. I think it is safe to say that’s the only time my boys have seen my do any serious amount of ironing. Inevitably I get, ‘Mom. What ARE you doing?” or “Mom. How does that iron work?”

Yeah. Not good.

The worst case scenario would be if my Mom or sister came to visit and they were ironing and my boys would say to them, “What is that? Why are you doing that? My Mom NEVER does that!” Of course the answer from them would be along the lines of ‘No kidding.”

I’m not a great housekeeper. I’m not slovenly, don’t get me wrong, but I’m not exactly the best house keeper. The way I look at it, I can’t do it all. I look after the kids, I cook, I get dinner on the table, I work, I love to write, I try to keep fit, I try to spend time with my spouse, I do volunteer work, tons of laundry, I’m active in my kid’s school, I run everyone to soccer practice, and to and from school… and housework, being the least fun, falls to the bottom.

So I’m not so good at doing things like… sweeping.

Flashback to about a year or so ago. Morrigan was visiting. It was after dinner and I was washing dishes. She went into my laundry room and broke out the broom. She was sweeping under the table when Son#2 said to her, “Aunt Morrigan, what are you doing?”

Morrigan replied, "I'm sweeping."

Son#2: Why?

Morrigan: Because... this is what you do when you clean the kitchen. You sweep.

Son#2: My Mom never does that.

She looked over at me and lifted an eyebrow... the expression of a 'Hmmm".

I have yet to live that down.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:04 PM | Comments (9)

May 29, 2005

Memorial Day

Every Memorial Day weekend I go to a wonderful service held in West Palm Beach. They have a big white tent that always smacks to me of 'Revival'. Folding chairs and fans for everyone just finishes off the vision.

The crowd is diverse. Casual attendants in shorts and t-shirts, to men in suits and women in dresses, and an abundance of men and women... in uniform.

We all attend every year to pay tribute. I would have it no other way.

Four years ago it was a task I was assigned as President of a Patriotic Organization I am active in; we always lay a wreath in the beautiful wreath laying ceremony. Now I go every year and continue to do so. No matter the weather. Rain or Shine, hot and humid, I will go every year from here on out.

Every year they dedicate a monument. This year’s was to the soldier’s who have fallen in the current war. It is always touching.

This year there were over 50 wreaths. VFW posts, American Legion Posts, 'Nam Knights, Special Ops, Patriotic organizations, to name a few, everyone was represented. I always sit on the edge of my seat during the wreath ceremony as I watch elderly veterans of WWII struggle, but determined to lay their wreath, as I hear the cheers from the crowds as the men from Korea 'the Forgotten War' and Vietnam lay their wreaths.

I am often choked with emotion. You have to see them to understand.

The Nam Knights always get me. I don't remember them laying a wreath before, but I have sat behind them in the past. They stick together. I hope to get one of them to come speak to my chapter one year as our National Defense speaker. I want to honor them. I don’t want to hear about their pasts; I want to hear about what they are doing now as I know they do a lot of work with the local VA hospital.

Our local bagpipe band starts the event, playing the hymns to every branch of service. We all sing The National Anthem and say The Pledge of Allegiance to the United States of America. We all sing God Bless America. We all sing loudly.

Next year I start to take my eldest. He needs to understand what sacrifices have been made for him, for us, to live in this country we live in.

I urge you to see if your community has a Memorial Day Service of some sort and attend one year. It brings it all home.

And I have a feeling... that if you attend once... you will continue to do so.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:36 PM | Comments (0)

Still Guest Posting...

at Jack's... He comes back tomorrow night.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:24 PM | Comments (0)

The Competition

Damn if this competition isn't going to take forever. GRR.

I'm at 129. I'm down a total of 4.

I'm not dwelling on it too much as I'm seeing improvement in other areas. In the gym today, I was running and started out at 8 minute miles, a far cry from my original 12 minute miles. Of course 15 minutes into it, I thought my heart was going to explode out of my body or my lungs were burning to ashes with every breath. I upped it to 10 minutes a piece and stopped after 30 minutes.

I'm almost back to where I was, so this is good.

I walked past a mirror today and could see my hamstrings look defined again. It startled me as it was a glance and then a double take for me. So I consider that progress.

One day at a time...

Posted by Boudicca at 10:22 PM | Comments (3)

May 28, 2005

The Carnival is UP!!!

The Carnival of the Recipes is up at Fresh as a Daisy! Holy cow there’s some good stuff there. There’s a chicken breast with portabella and bleu cheese. There are coffee cakes. Drinks. Sides. Yum!

I forgot to submit my cake. I put it here, but forgot to e-mail the carnival, so my cake will be submitted for next week’s. Sometimes I don’t know where my brain is…. GEEZ.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:25 PM | Comments (1)

Guest Posting Duties

I am guest posting until Monday at Jack’s of Random Fate. It’s not the type of stuff I blog on here, so if you’re thinking funny stories about my son Bones, that won’t be it.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:19 PM | Comments (1)

Movie Disappointments

We took the kids to see Madagascar today. Serious disappointment. I was really looking forward to that movie, more so than Star Wars. I know you Star Wars freaks can’t believe it. It is what it is. Anyway, it was such a disappointment that even my 8 year old, taking my hand as we were leaving the theater, said to me, “Mom, I didn’t think that movie was nearly as funny as I thought it would be.” On a sidenote, the penguins were a riot. I could have handled a movie of just them...

So they showed previews to the new Charlie and the Chocolate Factory movie coming out. I have no problems admitting that I am with millions of other American women that think Johnny Depp is a hotty. I would gladly give up a day pass for him.

In the Willie Wonka remake, he is creepy. Blech. Does nothing for me. I watched the previews and he made my skin crawl. Whereas Gene Wilder’s character came across as maniacal, Johnny’s character comes across as a plastic sicko that I would warn my kids about.

Yeah, that movie isn’t on my radar to see.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:17 PM | Comments (4)

May 27, 2005

Push! Breath! Push!

He's been born! My blog grandson has finally been born! He's ALIIIIVE!!!! Muwahahahaha!

Spurs, formerly a guest blogger at blog Daughter Sissy of And What Next , has opened up shop at Pull My Finger!

Go welcome him... and update your blogroll!

Posted by Boudicca at 10:09 PM | Comments (2)

Karnival of the Kids Entry- SmoochyPants!

I'm straying from my normal Karnival Entries. Typically I go into the way back machine of my old blog archives to find a story about the three little men in my life that are trying to make me insane. But this time... Heh heh heh! Special Treat.

My best friend since August of 1980, holy crap, almost 26 years, has a little boy. Mr. Smoochy Pants. He is adorable and when they come to visit, my boys cannot quit hugging on this little man. He has very smoochy cheeks. I see him in almost a week and cannot wait to get my hands on this boy and love all over him.

So he is this week's entry. And yes, she sent me the picture so I could post it! I would never do that without permission.

smoochypants.JPG


Posted by Boudicca at 09:17 PM | Comments (6)

Who Chooses Processed over Real?? PULEASE!

Today when I logged off my hotmail account, I was brought to a page with a Quiz. It’s a Made in America Quiz. It’s kind of fun. I think I got them all wrong, except one, which was a guess, so it doesn't count.

I’m going to divulge an answer to you, so you will have one up on me when you take the quiz. Which State eats more Spam than any other State?

That would be… Hawaii.

Now, I’ve lived in Hawaii and I can honestly say that my Mom didn’t get the sudden urge to feed us Spam. Nor did I ever see Spam on the menu in the lunchroom. And Spam was not on the menu at the Base Cafeteria nor the local restaurants. I don’t ever recall hearing any of my classmates talk about eating Spam.

Why in the world would people eat Spam? Blech. I had it as a kid and can.still.remember.the.awful.taste. It makes me want to run my teeth over my tongue to take that memory away.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:07 PM | Comments (8)

Men In Boots

Happy birthday to Machelle!

Geez, it was hard to find her requested birthday gift. Someone may have already gotten this one for her. In case y’all don’t know, Blog Sister Machelle has a fetish for men in shorts and work boots. Yeah, try googling that. I got a lot of picture’s of men’s work boots, but no men wearing them.

Then I found this.

hiking.jpg

Happy Birthday Machelle!

Just so you know, my birthday is in September. The Big 4-0. My request is simple, although it is not grantable. I just want 8-10 hours of continuous sleep. That’s all.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:04 PM | Comments (7)

My Saber is Blue

So I pilfered this link from many and this is the result. The thing is, I was totally clueless on some of the answers. I hadn’t played any of those video games, yet that was not an option. Of course I was very honest that my favorite character in Star Wars 4-6 was Han Solo. He was a hotty.

HASH(0x8bf89c8)
Your Lightsaber is Blue

Blue is often associated with depth and stability.
It symbolizes trust, loyalty, wisdom,
confidence, and truth.


What Colored Lightsaber Would You Have?
brought to you by Quizilla

Posted by Boudicca at 08:50 PM | Comments (2)

May 26, 2005

Meme Answered

Spurs has answered the Movie Meme HERE.

Check to see if he tagged you... you never know!

BTW, Spurs, is this not the longest damn labor in the history of blogging?! Be born already!!!

Posted by Boudicca at 10:21 PM | Comments (3)

How Not To Score Points with a Marine Biologist

Today was the last ‘go see it’ for my 8 year old’s boy scout group. We went to the Marine Life Center, also known by my boys as… ‘The Turtle Hospital’.

This is a fascinating place where sea turtles are nursed back to health if misfortune has befallen them. From propeller injuries to infections, from turtle hatchings gone bad to shell diseases, turtles are brought here and put in individual tanks to heal, and then put back out to sea. It’s an awesome place.

Eleven boys with three Moms, we all marched down to the ocean so we could see where some turtles had nested. Stakes had been placed near some of the nests to mark them, so people wouldn’t inadvertently dig them up. Both leatherback and loggerhead turtle nests were identified to us.

The kids were thrilled, but I was quietly giving the be quiet sign to one boy, who could only talk about wanting to make one big omelette. I was dying. No, it wasn’t Bones.

I think I’ve said how Bones peppers me with questions, all day long. He exhausts me. Well, we were at the tanks and he walked away from the lecture and found a woman that worked there and started to shadow her. She seemed to enjoy his company, he was watching mostly, but wanted to understand what she was doing.

As we were leaving she looked at him and said, “I want you to come back. Bring lots of questions.” Then she looked at me and said, “Wow, that kid asks a lot of questions…” Yeah. No kidding.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:10 PM | Comments (3)

Driving Rain

I had to drive tonight to an awards ceremony in a torrential rain... a horrible thunderstorm. I can't stand driving in that crap.

But as I was driving, I thought about that stupid Weather Pixie that's in the left sidebar of my blog. When it's a nasty storm like that, do they still have her all coy and sexy with a light drizzle and an umbrella? I bet they do.

I'll have to pay attention next storm, but I don't ever keep my computer on in weather like that. They need to have her fighting with her umbrella, hair matted wet, clothes clinging to her, lightning in the background. That's my reality.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:02 PM | Comments (2)

May 25, 2005

Movie Meme

I got tagged by Army Wife Toddler Mom with... The Movie Meme.

I don't watch a lot of movies. I blog, I read fiction, I write. Period. If it were a book meme, it would be far different. For instance, I just finished reading Stephen Coonts, "Liars and Thieves". Fun, easy read. Before that Clive Cussler's The Sacred Stone. That was also a fun read. I'm glad he keeps a list of the characters in the front so I could keep them squared away...

I don't relax by watching movies, though. My spouse does. He owns hundreds. And it's finatically organized about it too. That's how he veges. Me... I read.

With that... The Movie Meme:

1) The number of DVD's I own:

I own two, Raising Helen and YaYa Sisterhood. I don't watch a lot of movies. (Personal reasons as to why I own both these movies.)

2) The last DVD I bought:

I've never bought one.

3) The last DVD I watched:

The Sandlot. "You Throw like a Giiiirl!" GREAT movie. Everyone should see this movie. It's Bones' favorite so we watch it a lot.
Before that, it was A Christmas Story. Yes, I watched that two weeks ago with my boys. Five times. At least. In May. We obviously have Santa on the brain...

4) Five movies that I watch a lot (in no particular order) that mean a lot to me:

I don't watch these a lot, but these are a few of my favorites. I do go to movies a lot in theaters... I just don't watch them at home. I had to clarify that.

Waking Ned Devine

Four Weddings and a Funeral

When Harry Met Sally

The Princess Bride

LOTR trilogy... especially the last one, but I loved them all.


5) Tag 5 other people with this Meme...

OK, I can't do that or finally someone in my blog roll is going to find out where I live and kick my blogging butt... HOWEVER, I do feel compelled to be the first to indoctrinate my soon to be blog grandson... SPURS. Tag, He's it.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:24 PM | Comments (10)

Waiting is the Hardest Part

My two eldest boys had end of the year field trips to the local pool today. I chaperoned. Wait… did I say we lived in Florida? And it’s May? Yeah. So you know. It was hot. Damn hot.

So I went out with suggestions from e-mails and commenters and bought Waterbabies Sunscreen. No PABA. I will know in the morning if it worked as I break out in my sleep. It’s not instantaneous.

If this doesn’t work, I’m going to the website suggested by my soon-to-be blog-grandson, Spurs. I’m really really hoping it works. I have to work tomorrow and going to work with white welts on my arms and hands isn’t something I’m looking forward to.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:59 PM | Comments (5)

Santa... Is the Job Open?

I was in the car today and I said, out of the blue, to Bones, “So, how do you think you get picked to be Santa? Have you thought that maybe you have to start as an Elf first and work your way up?” I just had to do it after Harvey’s comment.

Bones looked at me seriously and said, “Oh. Yeah. I might have to do that.”

He looked so pensive! Finally he said, “But maybe I don’t have to be an Elf first. Maybe he’ll just pick someone. You know, Mom, I’m going to have to grow a really long beard. Really really big. Maybe I can just go to the costume shop and get a Santa costume to go with my long beard…”

Great. For my new readers, Bones is really into dressing up. We own a lot of costumes. As a matter of fact, his birthday is coming and I think he still wants that Daredevil costume. If he asks for a Santa costume for his birthday, I’m going to croak.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:55 PM | Comments (6)

Along the Lines of Santa...

My sister is really pushing me to tell my eldest about Santa. It’s coming. I know. But it’s hard and I have to figure out how to say it. We were on the phone and she was just giving me a ration about it again. The typical, “It’s just wrong he knows all about sex, but not Santa!”

I said something about, “NOT ALL ABOUT SEX! He only knows the basics!”

I was met with silence and then she kind of yelled… “NO, Bou, you are wrong! He also knows what a hooker is, about solicitation…”

I interrupted and said, “Oh. Yeah. And he knows about wet t-shirt contests…”

Still in a very strong voice she says, “Don’t you think for a minute I didn’t think about that when I read your blog and you were talking about telling him about white t-shirt contests! Don’t you think for a minute I didn’t think to myself, “OH GREAT! He knows about THIS, but NOT ABOUT SANTA!!”

I’m laughing very hard now… almost crying… and I eeked out, “Am I not the only one who thinks this is hysterical?”

And now she really yelled, “NO! I THINK THIS IS PATHETIC!”

Ahhh. OK. So I told her he had a tooth coming out soon and that I’d tell him then.

She was lost because we do not think alike. At all. She replied, “WHAT? A tooth is coming out so you’ll tell him? This is some life altering event so while he’s losing a tooth, you’ll tell him about Santa????”

I told her that NO, it’s the same lines… tooth fairy, Easter Bunny, Santa… if he loses a tooth, I’ll just roll it all up, taking it sequentially starting with the Fairy.

Whatever. I already have the whole thing in my head. I just have to sit down with him. I’m not looking forward to it, but if I word it right, we should be OK. He’s 10. He’s gotta know.

Am I the Queen of sheltering or what?

Posted by Boudicca at 09:53 PM | Comments (6)

May 24, 2005

Thinking Outside the Box... Again

My eldest had basketball this afternoon, so I took Sons 2 and 3 out for a snack at the local tea house. They love getting cookies and milk there and the owner, a sweet Christian woman, is sweet on my boys. Cookies as big as saucers and milk that keeps on coming, it makes them happy.

During their snack there ensues a discussion as to what they want to be when they grow up. It went something like this:

Bones (Son3 who is almost 6): I want to be what Daddy is because it makes more money than what you do. (He’s talking about my paying job, not my Mom job. I’ve never heard an engineering position dissed because of pay before, but whatever…)

Me: Buddy, you’re getting it all wrong. Really. It’s not about what makes you money, but what will make you happy.

Frankie (Son2 who is 8): I get it! That’s why I want to design video games when I grow up. It will make me happy.

Me: Exactly.

Bones: Ok. Then, I want to be Santa Claus.

Me: (silence) Hmm. Really?

Bones: Can I be? You said I can be anything I want if I try hard.

I’m now debating what to say, because of course if he gets married and has kids, he can be Santa, but I refrain and the moment passes where he expects an answer.

Frankie: Sure, you can fly up to the North Pole, but then you have to search around in all that snow looking for the magic button for Santa’s workshop to appear.

Me: (still not knowing what to say… so I’m saying… nothing)

Bones: OK. I can do that. I just don’t want to be an elf. OK? I want to be SANTA, not an elf.

I think he looks more elfish to me, but I let it slide. So I have one undecided, one wants to program video games, and one wants to be Santa… but NOT an elf.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:19 PM | Comments (9)

The Devil Inside...

I’m not one to go around pimpin’ other people’s kid's cuteness… but I want you to go HERE and tell me if this is not the cutest damn chunk of love, with the glint of devil in her eye, that you’ve ever seen. If you don’t think so, there’s somethin’ wrong with you. She reminds me of what Morrigan looked like as a baby. It's that wispy hair and devilish grin and those smoochy cheeks.

And read her story. It’s horrible, but so funny I laughed out loud. Mama has a good sense of humor. *That*, my friends, is what will see her through it all…

Posted by Boudicca at 10:17 PM | Comments (6)

Update on My Butterfly Garden

All caterpillars are dead, but one. We had like 16… at one point we had none, and now we have one. That’s it. My scraggily assed garden has one caterpillar and no butterflies and no criscilla.

And I assure you, it is a scraggily assed garden. It looks like crap. Big twigs sticking out of the dirt, half of them having been chewed on so they look dead.

Did I already state that I planted that scraggily assed garden smack in the middle of my yard? Oh yes I did. Right smack in the middle, surrounding my only tree.

We look like the trash on the street.

See for yourself. And it’s not a gnome, it’s a frog. Next time I’m getting a garden gnome, just for the sake of the blog family.

(Click to Enlarge)
Garden 001.jpg

(Click to Enlarge)
Garden 002.jpg

Posted by Boudicca at 10:03 PM | Comments (6)

Carnival of the Recipes: Links and Coconut Cake

This week's Carnival of the Recipes deadline is coming soon. Deadline… Midnight Thursday. Recipe.carnival (at) gmail (dot) com. You know the drill.

Last week's Carnival was hosted by Jordana. Take a look at all that is good HERE.

This is my entry to this week’s Carnival. Coconut Cake. This is a big hit at the bake sales in which I've participated. I’ve had women call me when there’s been a bake sale for a women’s organization I’m in, begging me, “Bring the Coconut Cake!”

The ladies tell me it can be frozen as well, to serve at a later date. It’s a heavy cake and feeds a whole heap o’ lot o’ people.

I’ve typed it as it was handed to me. You have to read through the entire recipe for all the ingredients.

Coconut Cake

1 yellow cake mix
1 (4 oz) vanilla instant pudding mix
1 1/3 cup water
4 eggs
¼ cup oil

Blend the first 5 ingredients (2 minutes)

Add
2 cups coconut
1 cup chopped nuts

Bake in three 9 inch pans, 350 deg for 30 minutes.

Frosting
2 Tbs butter
2 Cups coconut

Melt butter in skillet. Add coconut. Cook over low-medium heat, stirring continually until coconut is browned.

Cream
1 stick of butter
8 oz cream cheese
2 tsp milk (if needed)

Add 1 cup browned coconut to creamed mixture. Frost between layers, sides and top. Sprinkle cake with remaining browned coconut.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:53 PM | Comments (4)

May 23, 2005

Karnival of the Kids

Susie of Practical Penumbra is the hostess of this week’s Karnival of the Kids. Susie did a great job and has a fantastic lay out! Go over and see it HERE.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:08 PM | Comments (1)

I Howl at the Moon

I saw this at blog daughter Sissy’s as well as blog bro Little Joe’s. Heh. I’m waiting for Laughing Wolf to see this. Not sure how true this is... but I guess it could be...

Wolf
What Is Your Animal Personality?

brought to you by Quizilla

Posted by Boudicca at 10:04 PM | Comments (6)

Disney Recap

It’s hotter than three hells in Orlando in May.

There is no wind in Orlando.

Disney is the master of moving massive amounts of people in an orderly fashion.

Disney’s food is awful. I think I may have poisoned myself. I think it’s having to feed those massive amounts of people.

You know its bad when you’d rather eat a hotdog made of mystery meat than touch their salad.

Skip the Stitch ride. As my 2nd son said, “Mom, that smell of that nasty chili dog burp is still in my nose.” Yeah. That was 2 hours after the fact… and I thought it was just me.

My kids are permanently scarred by ‘Its Tough To Be a Bug’. My 5 year old was screaming, my 8 year old was crying… and my 10 year old climbed behind me and the bench, trying to hide/become one with me, to get away from the film. It was pathetic.

They are no longer scarred by Pirates of the Caribbean. Thankfully. It was embarrassing to tell people I had the only children who couldn’t go on that ride because they were terrified.

My 5 year old truly has no fear other than It's Tough To be a Bug. He wanted to do the Haunted House. We didn’t do it as my elder ones refused.

We are a roller coaster family. Period. The entire family.

My eldest is a sweetie. When he got his wish, being in the front for Splash Mountain, I was not happy, given I was his ‘partner’. I grabbed a rain poncho and sat on it, covering my shorts… since they were white. He was confused and I explained that white cotton becomes translucent. Oh… I know… I gave too much information. Next thing you know, I’m explaining white T-shirt contests and on and on. He thought the whole thing was very amusing. I informed him that while one day he may enjoy watching such contests his mother was never one to participate in something like that and I wasn’t about to participate in a wet white shorts contest. With that, he proceeded to try to cover my lap even more… relinquishing the part of the rain poncho he was sitting on to keep his butt dry. We got very wet, but I am happy to say that I was able to shield not only my lap, but the two ‘squishy’ parts in my t-shirt and only my belly got wet.

The average woman in America has no shame. I was amazed at how much skin they showed… and I’m no prude. I think they must not own mirrors. Blech.

There is no shade at Animal Kingdom. Why oh why did they design it that way? Ack!

The new Winnie the Pooh ride is the old Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. When you start the ride and enter Owl’s tree house, if you look to the left, you’ll see a picture on Owl’s wall of Mr. Toad handing the deed to Owl.

Buzz Lightyear is always a fun ride.

I allowed my kids each one toy on the visit. My practical 2nd son, bought a camera. (It’s the most manual point and shoot I’ve ever seen.) My eldest and youngest sons bought toy rifles. Most of Sunday morning, while I was packing, they spent having old fashion rifle duels. “OK, walk 10 paces and then turn and shoot!” “You didn’t get me! You missed!” “Yes I did!!” “No! It was a flesh wound!”

Water is expensive. I don’t drink Florida tap water if I don’t have to. We have some of the worst water in the country. I definitely don’t drink it if I’m in Palm Beach County. (I have a filtration system on my house.) Any bottled water has to be better than Florida water… Water is expensive.

The Jungle Cruise at Magic Kingdom was funnier than I remember. The last line of the girl cracked me up. "Remember, please take your small children with you as you depart the boat. Any child left becomes property of Disney World after 48 hours. At that time, we teach them to sing in 37 different languages and put them to work in It's a Small World..."

Posted by Boudicca at 09:48 PM | Comments (12)

May 22, 2005

The Competition. GRRR

Ugh. It's Sunday. It means its that damn competition I'm in with VW... and Amy and Sissy... and wait, who else? If you are partaking, throw it in the comments. I'll make sure I'll do the linky stuff while talking about how I am still zaftig and not svelte.

I refuse to weigh myself now. I only weigh in the mornings undressed. I am neither of those. I will say, I was at 128 on Friday morning, down .5. I don't even want to know where I am now.

Disney is nothing but crap food. I tried to do a salad one day and felt like I was eating chemicals. Plastic would have tasted better.

I am sore from all the walking, but there is no way I walked off all that fat food.

My attitude is not being helped by the fact one of my kids told me I was fat this weekend. Yeah, that was a real low point in my weekend.

Tomorrow morning, ASAP, I'll post the weight. I am so not looking forward to it.

UPDATE: 130. Blech. That's plus 2 lbs since Friday. I'm thinking there is some water retention there. I drank as much water as I could, but not as I needed. At $2.00 per bottle, I wasn't exactly thrilled with the prospect of drinking a bottle every couple hours for two days...

Anyway, if it is water, we'll see if come off this Sunday. If it's not... well... then... Blech.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:46 PM | Comments (10)

Sissy Moved and The Word O' The Week

I leave for a weekend, and my blogdaugher goes and MOVES on me! That's right. Sissy has moved her blog HERE. But don't totally update your links. Spurs is still posting at her old site until he gets used to blogging. So ADD her new site, but keep her old site...

Check out her new digs. I love them. I love them so much, I'll be picking her brain to make some serious changes to mine. I love what they did.

And... her Linky Lovin' for last week's Word O' the Week, Trammel, is HERE.

This weeks word is zaftig, which I thought might have something to do with Nazis, just because it sounds like it. I don't know. It just sounded like something those low lifes would have yelled in their salute, "Zaftig!" But... I was wrong. For the definition... go HERE. Remember, link her, send her trackback, and she will include you in her Sunday Linky Lovin'.

This word is going to be sooooo easy....

Posted by Boudicca at 10:37 PM | Comments (1)

Renewed Faith in Humanity

We took the kids to Disney and I have a renewed faith in humanity, even if it is temporary. I met some of the NICEST people.

We were standing in line to buy Disney crap for lunch, standard fare of overpriced food that is full of chemicals and bad for every major organ in your body. We finally got to order and I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turned around and this guy said to me, “Excuse me, but we’d like to buy you lunch.”

Wha?!

I looked at him and said, “I’m sorry?”

He replied, “We’d like to buy you lunch. My wife and I. We want to buy your entire family lunch. All 5 of you.”

I must’ve looked shocked, well, I was, because the wife said, “Seriously, we bought this diner ticket from Disney, we’re leaving tomorrow and we have 15 meals left. If we don’t use them, they’ll go to waste.”

I told her she could use her pass on us, and we would pay THEM the money. They were insistent and truly the nicest people, so we compromised. We gave them $20. I feel certain our lunch was $30. I felt bad about it, but they were insistent. They were from Chicago. I’ve met so many nice people from Illinois.

Later on, we stopped to get the boys icey drinks, like slushies. My eldest decided he wanted ice cream instead, which was cool with me, since I don’t like snow cones/slushies, but I LOVE ice cream. While we were getting ice cream, my husband started talking to one of the Disney employees who was hanging at the gate, her entire job was to tell people they couldn’t bring their strollers into her attraction. Boooorrring. I came back and she introduced herself and she… was… the… nicest… girl. All of 21 years old, still in college, lived in Maryland, and just sweet as pie. As we were leaving she said, “Wait! I have this priority seating ticket that I was saving for friends, but they never showed, so you take it!”

This ticket got all 5 of us onto a Fantasyland attraction without waiting in line. It saved us an hour. I could not thank her enough and she was SOOO sweet. Seriously, nice kid.

Later on, we were in line at Buzz Lightyear and we were behind this very extroverted guy from Upstate NY and his wife and I believe a daughter. He was telling us that they were expecting their 17th grandchild. They had 5 kids. He had me to laughing so hard, I thought I’d wet myself. They were so sincere, down to Earth, and truly good salt of the Earth people.

Flash forward to today. We’re waiting 40 minutes in the Kali Rapids ride. Holy crap that’s a long wait with 3 boys. The YOUNG married couple in front of us, the guy was wearing the same clothes my husband was… khaki shorts, white shirt. They were the same height. My sons kept mistaking him for my husband and they would take his hand or his arm. I was horrified. Bones had been bouncing off the walls, getting in everyone’s personal space. My eldest was saying he was going to lock him in a closet when we got home and throw away the key. There was incessant noise and activity around us. Now, with the granddad with 16 ½ grandkids, I was cool. The guy knows kids. With this young couple… I felt really bad.

Finally after Bones grabbed the young man’s hand, mistaken identity… again… I said, “I am sooo sorry. You are wearing the same clothes as my husband and they are not paying attention.” I think I was 3 shades of red.

He looked at me and said, “I’m enjoying the practice. Your kids are GREAT. We’re having fun watching them.”

Was he nuts?

I said, “You cannot be serious. We’re like the poster family for birth control…”

She started to laugh and said, “No. We’re serious. We want a family. We’re just waiting for me to get out of college. I’m one of 5 kids.”

We spoke to them the rest of the wait. She just got back from the Sandbox. She was National Guard, Army. She spent 14 months in Baghdad. They’ve been married 2 years. They were joking about how the first couple years are the hardest, but they ‘didn’t remember a fight”, which made me laugh. Hard to fight when your spouse isn’t around! I asked them where they were from and they looked at each other and laughed. “North Dakota”.

I’d never met anyone from North Dakota. I don’t think. I LOVED that couple. He was a good looking guy, early 20s. Very attentive. She was, as my husband says, “Curvy, sweet, North Dakota.” She just looked like sweetness and she was beautiful. I want nothing but good things, wonderful healthy babies for them, and many many years as happy as they seemed today. I thanked her for serving our country and wished them luck.

These people… all strangers… collectively renewed my faith in humanity. A cross section of America is what I met this weekend and I was very very pleased by what I encountered. I love America.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:27 PM | Comments (9)

Welts, hives, bumps...

My spouse and I took the kids to Disney this weekend. Post on top is about that… this one is a question to my readers.

I put on sunscreen yesterday and broke out in a rash. This happened last year too. I am evidently allergic to Bullfrog. (Last year's sunscreen was a different brand.) Now… it’s not hives as they aren’t all big, red, blotchy and itchy. It’s hard to describe. They’re flesh colored or white, and they’re different shaped ‘bumps’. My skin has a swollen disfigured appearance on my arms and my legs, its just different sized swollen spots. I hate to say bumps as it makes them sound uniform.

I did some internet research that said it is s combination of the SPF with a chemical reaction to the sun, that some folks can’t take it. My question is… have any of y’all ever had this?

I’m calling my dermatologist in the morning to see what sunscreens they suggest. I live in frickin’ Florida! I have to use sunscreen! And it must be just one chemical as I use a sunscreen under my make up and have never had this happen to my face.

I took Benadryl and am waiting to see if it works. It is obviously a topical allergy as it’s only on my arms and legs. I figure as long as my tongue and lips aren’t swelling, I’m cool.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:22 PM | Comments (7)

May 19, 2005

Middle of the Road Kinda Gal

I didn't like some of the questions. I thought they were slanted. Either way, it still made my point.

I tell people, I am a fiscal conservative and a social liberal. Yup. I'm a centrist. I cannot stand both parties, although I'm a registered Republican, and wait for a party to come about that speaks to me. That's not going to happen. So I will remain a jaded voter who only votes against who I perceive to be the biggest idiot. I will die never voting FOR someone.

Hat tip to my blog bro Little Joe, from whom I pilfered the link.

Your Political Profile

Overall: 55% Conservative, 45% Liberal
Social Issues: 25% Conservative, 75% Liberal
Personal Responsibility: 50% Conservative, 50% Liberal
Fiscal Issues: 75% Conservative, 25% Liberal
Ethics: 25% Conservative, 75% Liberal
Defense and Crime: 100% Conservative, 0% Liberal
How Liberal / Conservative Are You?
Posted by Boudicca at 10:49 PM | Comments (7)

Being Six

Bones is turning 6 in two weeks. Since his birthday is in the summer, I brought his birthday treat to school today.

Six. I wonder what he'll remember. I was in the gym tonight, trying to work off those daggum brownies I ate... that's what he had be bring to school. As I was sweating it on the elliptical, I was remembering when I was 6.

I went to three schools that year. The first school in Mayport, Florida, we lived in base housing, I think. I don't remember the teacher, but I remember I was a reindeer in the Christmas play and I think my Mom made my costume. That would be in her spare time, having a 6 year old, 4 year old and baby... and The Great Omnipotent One was deployed.

After Christmas he was transferred to DC, doing strategic wargaming for the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab. My folks bought their first home there, but until then, we lived in a hotel. It wasn't a great neighborhood. At six, I knew we weren't living the high life, and that's not saying much since we came from base housing.

When we arrived at the hotel, TGOO had gotten there first. Santa had visited and left my brother a toy space module and me a Barbie camper. We got a note from Santa too.

TGOO built our first snowman, right outside our hotel window. A snowman and a snowboy. My brother was thrilled.

I went to a very poor school where I was one of few white children and I remember one little boy always sang 'Shimmy Shimmy Coco Pop'. I brought my lunch, but most of the kids in my class got free lunch. It was brought to the classes. Also... this is very odd... not all the children had their innoculations. They got them AT SCHOOL. Being a Navy brat, I had mine, but kids got sugar cubes with their polio vaccine in the class.

I don't remember that teacher either.

I don't remember TGOO being there much. It was Mom and we three kids. It had to suck to have been her... but you would never have known it. My sister took her first steps in that hotel and I remember her learning to walk... and I remember her 1st birthday.

In our new home, in Rockville, Maryland, I went to a great school named English Manor. My folks had picked the house by the school district, Montgomery County, which was supposed to be the best. Looking back on it, I think it was. Upon researching our old school two weeks ago, my brother found out it's been leveled and turned to soccer fields.

This is an odd thing we military children do. We are constantly searching for our past. What happened to people we only knew for two years? What happened to the places we lived? The schools we attended?

Anyway, I had a cute little teacher, Mrs. Pokaris, and I remember even then, knowing she was young. I bet she was 22. Her boyfriend used to visit and I remember he was cute and I could tell he was in love with her and it made me happy. I remember he didn't look like any of the other men I knew. I only knew men with crew cuts, high and tights, or standard military 1/4 inch taper. He had hair on his collar and a lot of it. He may have had facial hair too... something else I never saw much of.

But this is the funniest story:

I came home from school one day and sitting at the kitchen table with my Mom, while TGOO fried fish (why do I remember that?) I told them that a boy in school had written a bad word on the floor using a red crayon. It caused quite a stir.

My Mom was thinking, "A six year old. How bad could it be?" So she pressed, "Really? What word would that be?"

I replied, "It rhymes with Duck."

My Mom, not believing it could be anything bad... this was 1972, I was SIX, said, "Really? What word would that be?"

And then of course I blurted, "FUCK!" That's the first time I ever used that word. Not the last, sad to say, although I was in college before it became habitual. Why, that's the first word that came out of my mouth yesterday when I heard there might be a tropical storm in the Gulf and it's not even June.

I digress.

My Mom was horrified. Have you seen the movie A Christmas Story? That's a family favorite. My kids just watched it again last week. So in the flick the little boy says the 'f-word' and the Mom freaks. She then calls another Mom and she completely wigs out and both of them are near hysteria.

OK, my Mom wasn't *that* bad, but let us say, she was pretty horrified. TGOO on the other hand could not believe she had pushed me to say it, given I said it rhymed with 'duck'. She said it never occurred to her that that was the word. It really didn't.

My folks were really young. TGOO was 31. Mom was 30. TGOO would read the Washington Post and it went through something like section Q. That's when I started to read the paper.

So all this came rushing at me while in the gym. I wonder what Bones is going to remember from being six... because I remember a lot. This is nothing... really.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:42 PM | Comments (10)

May 18, 2005

Left foot, left foot, right foot right

Blake of Laughing Wolf has a post called ‘The Foolish things we do with shoes’ He tells the tale of his horrible shoe experience while being determined to see the sights in Austria. He then asks for foot stories.

Eric of Straight White Guy chimes in with a completely awful story about bloody feet in combat boots while in the Marines.

My story isn’t like that. No bloody bad shoe fitting foot stories. Mine deals with a stripper. (How’s that for enticement to get you to read?)

I’m a barefoot kinda gal. I hate shoes. I find them confining. But, I also don’t have particularly nice feet; they are heavily calloused from training Karate for 3 years. My sister is constantly comparing our feet… hers and how smooth pretty and feminine they are, always polished and manicured. Mine, heavily calloused with the nails cut short. Although I do keep them polished now, I view feet as… functional tools. Period. She views them in a far different light. Feet are part of the whole part of being feminine… pretty hands, beautiful hair, lovely feet. Heh. Me. Not so much.

A little over 2 years ago, my best friend for the last 25 years was getting married. This was a very very big deal for me, and my family as she is one of us, and so I drove to Tallahassee to be an attendant. I would have done anything to make her happy; I was that thrilled that she met such an awesome man.

She decided that the day before, we would all get pedicures. I had never had one. Yes, at 37, I had never had a pedicure. Dopey me even brought my clogs to wear afterwards… not so smart.

I am sitting in the pedicure chair and for the record, let me say, I realize now I hate them. I know, some of you are saying, “What? Pedicures are God’s Gift to women!” NO. She rubbed this salt all over my legs and it stung and burned. And then, when it was done, the tub was full of this disgusting dirt and dead skin and all I could think of was the filth from the people before me.

But the real kicker was when she suddenly started to take a pumice stone to one of my calluses. I pulled my foot out of her hand and said sharply, “What are you doing?!”

She looked stunned and replied, “I’m going to get rid of your calluses…”

I said, “Oh no you aren’t! Don’t touch my calluses. I NEED those!”

She stared at me like I had three heads and said, “ooooooookayyyy.” I changed the topic.

Flash forward about a year and I’m at my manicurist’s. I get my nails professionally manicured by a wonderful Japanese lady twice a month and have been doing so for about 2 years. I love this woman and when all seems to not be right with this world, I can sit in her chair, say nothing, and she will massage my hands and paint my nails… and all my troubles fade away. I am into nice hands.

I said to her, “You won’t find me ever getting a pedicure. I just do not enjoy them.”

She looked puzzled and said in heavily accented English, “Why not? Many many people like them… They are relaxing.”

I related the story, from start to finish, ending it with my adamant statement of ‘Don’t touch my calluses!”

She laughs and says, “You know, we had a stripper that used to come in once a week and have a pedicure. She would tell us, ‘Don’t touch my calluses! I need them!” Dancing on that wood floor, she got calluses on her feet and she needed to keep them.”

I’m listening, then a wicked grin came across her face and looking through the tops of her eyes while her face is looking down at my hands she says, “That girl… she probably thought you were a stripper!”

I laughed so hard. First I was horrified, then I looked down at my natural 34Bs and said, “yeah. I don’t think so…”

Posted by Boudicca at 10:10 PM | Comments (15)

May 17, 2005

Carnival of the Recipes... Brisket

It's hectic here in the House of Boudicca. I don't know if it comes across that way or not when I write, but I have my calendar color coded and we pretty much run on a wing and a prayer around here. I'm so ready for summer...

So the crockpot rules in this house at times. I think it's probably one of the best wedding gifts I got, aside from all the Christmas ornaments. (Yes, I generically put 'Christmas Ornaments' on my bridal registry. I got some really cool stuff...)

This has become one of our staples... a once a month dealy. If you are on a low sodium diet, this is NOT for you. It's a Brisket with a whole heap 'O salt.

Now, when I was in Publix tonight buying the brisket, the sweet man/boy working in the meat department told me that if you are to cut a brisket, you cut it WITH the grain. It cooks more tender he says. I don't know why, but I'll take his word for it. However, since you cook this sucker for 8 hours, I don't think it much matters which way you cut it, if you're trying to get it to fit in your crockpot.

I serve this with egg noodles. Any rice, noodle, or potato will do. This would also make a good meal on a cold fall or winter evening... like a pot roast or stew

Crock Pot Brisket

1 package brown gravy
1 package onion soup mix (I use Lipton)
1 package Italian dressing mix
1 brisket (I hover around 1.5 lb)
2 cups of water

Place the brisket at the bottom of the crock pot. Throw everything else on top. Turn the crockpot on low. Cook for 8 hours or so.

The End.

All that salt makes it very tender, so remember, don't do try at home if you're on a low sodium diet!

Posted by Boudicca at 10:47 PM | Comments (7)

May 16, 2005

Sissy's Word 'O The Week

Blog daughter Sissy of And What Next… has her new Word of the Week up, with defnition and example, HERE. It’s trammel. Of course… we’re all waiting to see how blog father Harvey uses the word. This one should be easy for him!

Her linky lovin’ for last week’s word troglodyte is HERE.

Remember, if you use trammel, trackback to her or put it in the comments and then at the end of the week she’ll have you in the linky lovin’ round up.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:19 PM | Comments (1)

How Does YOUR Garden Grow

For those of you who have never seen a new butterfly garden…they’re ugly. Seriously ugly. Essentially, we are strictly harvesting caterpillars right now. I have no idea when they start to spin, but they’re getting pretty fat… which means the plants we planted are looking pretty raggedy ass.

It’s not bad enough that some of these plants look like weeds anyway, but now you have caterpillars munching all over them, so they look like *chewed up* weeds. Yeah. Not pretty. When the caterpillar is done munching, it looks like I planted a bunch of sticks. Really.

I’ve got to take a picture tomorrow. I look at my neighbors’ homes with their nice full flower beds… then I look at our ‘garden’ and I think, “we look like po’ white trash”. Watch our caterpillars turn into butterflies and hang in our neighbors’ flower beds.

So far, no birds have taken any caterpillars that we’ve seen, but according to Son#1, one got eaten by fire ants. Woe the life of a caterpillar. The poor thing can’t escape… If not being attacked from the air, he’s got it comin’ from the ground. Sucks to be him.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:14 PM | Comments (5)

Did We Really Read the Same Thing?

Blog daughter Sissy has a post up of a dream that disturbed her greatly HERE. It’s bothered her enough that she went on a dream site to see if she could figure out what was going on. I’ve done that before. I hate these recurring dreams where I’m going bald. (Is that some sign I’m losing my virility? Wait, do women have virility?) Or the dream where I’m on a bridge going 90 to nothin’ and suddenly the bridge is out and I’m surrounded by water. (I don’t really want to know what that one means. I just always wake up in a pool of cold sweat.) I hate those dreams.

Anyway, when I was a freshman in college, taking English Lit, we were studying poetry. Let me state first, I LOVED my professor. He died last year of cancer, when I was home, and if there had been a funeral, I would have attended. He was one of the best professors I’ve ever had… and he let me argue with him. Which I did. A lot. (I made A’s too. What a great guy.)

Also, I don’t like poetry. I know, some of you big brain big thinker types love it. You understand it. I do not. Plain and simple, I don’t get it. I struggle with it. If you need to tell me something, don’t beat around the bush, put it out there straight forward. Poetry beats around the bush. I suck at poetry interpretation.

My Prof… he ate that stuff up. Couldn’t get enough of it.

We start to study Robert Frost’s Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening. In this poem there is a frozen lake. My Prof states that water is a symbol of sexuality and in this poem, the guy walking through the woods, he is mourning the loss of his ability to sexually function. You know… frozen water… dead sexuality… something like that.

I’m listening to this and think, ‘You have GOT to be kidding me.’ Being one to not hold back, I raised my hand and called BS. Pretty much. But I was polite. I told him there was no way in the world he was going to convince me that when Robert Frost sat down to write this poem he fully intended to include in it the loss of this man’s sexual function or sex life or whatever in the world my Prof meant, that it was a nice poem, kind of sad, and I’m sure Robert Frost would be horrified if he knew that’s what people thought.

We argued about it for a good 10 minutes. Neither of us budged.

I still don’t think that’s what Robert Frost meant. I could be wrong, but I don’t think so.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:12 PM | Comments (8)

May 15, 2005

Karnival of the Kidz

karnivalbanner0vk.jpg

We have some awesome entries this week! Stories, pictures, stories and pictures, letters, stuff from when bloggers were kids, their kids, their nieces... we have it all here.

I posted these in the order I received them for the Karnival.

First, blog daughter Sissy of And What Next, has photos of her Early Chocolate Addiction! Yeah... we're DEFINITELY related... (By the way, she was a very smoochy baby!)

From my blog father Harvey, of Bad Example, we have this very cool black and white picture from his childhood along with a summary. I loved that he posted a picture of he and his Dad and if you're a loyal reader of his blog, you'll know his Dad was an awesome man. Anyway, is there anyone out there, other than you young bloggers, that DIDN'T own this swingset as a kid?!

Susie of Practical Penumbra has this picture of her niece. Make sure you go through the comments. Everyone has supplied their own ideas for captions. Good stuff!

Oddybobo of BoboBlogger has TWO submissions. A most excellent post on catching fireflies with her Dad. It has been suggested she submit this to the Carnival of the Vanities.

Her 2nd post is a picture of her and her folks. Check out her hair! She's so cute!!!

From Coturnix of Science and Politics we have Out of the Mouth of Babes. Boy, his daughter pegged this one right!

Blog sister Sally of Whimsy Capricious posts pictures of her Tara, and future wife of my son, Bones. I look at the top picture and think, "What would I have done if I'd had a girl?!!!" Yikes!

Jody of Iowa Geek has her latest photos of Brenna. I cannot believe that child is 6 months old already! I remember checking her blog hourly for updates when she was in labor. And what a happy baby Brenna is...

My link this week was to a past post on Bone's innoculations and Elmo's Underwear. I think just typing that in this post is sure to get me googled for it...

Jeff at Ponytailed Conservative has a great black and white photo of him and his first girlfriend. Of course, being the Bad Example family, there is much discussion in the comments as to the whereabouts of his missing hand in the picture!

From Blog daugter VW, we have this link to pictures of her kids decorating their father's birthday cake. Now, I'm sure it was yummy... but you just look at that youngest imp and ask yourself if you would eat any cake that baby touched! He is Trouble!

Jay of The Zero Boss has this story of his son and this new habit he is picking up. Of course it is being reinforced by his siblings... who are also encouraging Dad to blog on it!

Pam of Camp HappyBadFun has this picture of her oldest. Pictures like that bring back so many good memories. What a smoochy man.

Amy of Prochein Amy has this beautiful picture of her daughter at just weeks old and looking very wise. I think that baby has more hair than I do!

Donna of Primo Donna, who happens to be Prochein Amy's Mom... so we have a real Mom and Daughter blogging, which I think is very cool, posts a letter she received from Amy that is priceless. Let us hope we are all so fortunate to have our children think of us the way Amy does her Mom. Donna did something right...

And last but not least, from Army Wife Toddler Mom we have pictures of Dash and Pink Ninja. Her kids are so adorable. They need me to smooch their cheeks... and that whispy blonde hair!!!

Remember, deadline for next Karnival of the Kidz is next Sunday! The next hostess if the very funny Susie of Practical Penumbra.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:45 PM | Comments (9)

The Competition

I see VW has not posted her weight. She's on vacation. El Lam-O excuse! Bah!. I will say, I lost 1 pound. I’m now down 4.5 lbs. 128.5.

Amy has jumped on board and she posts her weight on Mondays.

Even though she's not posting it, inches are peeling off of blogdaughter Sissy as she has fully embraced working out at Curves!

I’m not sweating it being ‘just 1’. First, it is healthier to lose it slow… unless you’re doing what Aris Ravencroft is doing and joining the Marines… then it just peels off… whether you want it to or not.

Second, I’m regaining the muscle I lost over the last few months, so I’m gaining muscle and it is displacing fat. I can feel it. My abs are tighter, my legs are more toned, I look leaner. My clothes that were getting just too tight, are now just snug.

Third, I have too many other things to sweat… losing 1 lb as opposed to 2… if I were to worry about that, I am pathetic and need a life.

However, I still fully intend to kick VW and Amy's butts in this contest. Fully. *Grin* Aris doesn't count... the Marines will give him a distinct advantage in a couple weeks. The man/boy will be lean and fit. Nope... I don't compete with the United States Marine Corps!

Posted by Boudicca at 08:55 PM | Comments (4)

Be Gone Ye Llamas!

In the car yesterday at Publix, my 2nd son says to me, “Mom, when I grow up, can I go to college to learn how to make video games?

Through the rear view mirror, and not wanting him to think he has any trammels in his future as to what he can be, I reply, “Of course. You can do anything you want.”

Son#2 said, ‘Good, because I have some great dreams that would make awesome video games!”

Son#1 chimes in, “Will the games have llamas in them?”

This is Ogre’s fault. My kids then start to sing that stupid Llama song.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:47 PM | Comments (5)

A Cucumber is to a Banana as A...

I was talking to my sister last night. I was telling her how if I really eat the number of servings of vegetables required, I’m not that hungry. I definitely don’t overeat. I was telling her how I eat mainly cucumbers and tomatoes, my two favorite vegetables.

The entire conversation went down hill when I said about cucumbers, “I just peel them and eat them.”

Morrigan: What? You don’t cut them up?

Me: Nope. I just peel off the skin and eat the cucumber.

Silence.

Morrigan: Why, that’s rather phallic don’t you think?

Silence.

Me: It’s like eating a banana!

Morrigan: Yeaaaaah, except for the girth!

I’m starting to laugh.

Morrigan: Just don’t do that in front of others and you’re OK. I can just picture you sitting in your car, eating a big peeled cucumber. Don’t do that.

I’m laughing now, more of a nervous “Oh My God!” laugh.

She continues: So what do you do, go to Publix and buy a whole sack of cucumbers?

Me: Yeah. I do. That lasts me about 3 days.

Morrigan: Aren’t they like… 90% water?! Isn’t that like eating a whole head of iceberg lettuce? That’s eating a stick of water. (She has now put on a fake voice like she’s a customer ordering from a waiter), “Uhhh. May I have a stick of water, please?”

Now I’m getting defensive and I jump on the internet to look up the nutritional value of cucumbers.

Me: (laughing and attempting to talk) Ack! They’re 96% water!

Morrigan: Reeaaaallly. You don’t say.

Me: But look at all this fiber! It has like 9g of fiber and NO FAT! These are GREAT for you.

Morrigan: Oh yeah. (putting on fake customer in a restaurant voice again) “May I please have a stick of water and fiber?”

Jerk. She’s just jealous because I’m getting my daily requirements of vegetables and she’s not. That’s what it is.

Stick of Water. Humpf. I am heeding her warning, however, and not eating my peeled cucumber in public…

Posted by Boudicca at 08:40 PM | Comments (9)

May 14, 2005

It's Coming!!!

Karnival of the Kidz deadline is quickly approaching. Sunday night! If you intend to post, don't procrastinate! Please!

Storeis and/or pictures, your kids, someone else's kids, of when you were a kid... it's all good.

Karnival.kidz (at) gmail (dot) com

Posted by Boudicca at 10:23 PM | Comments (0)

Serial Plant Killer

I evidently felt the urge to go on a mass murdering spree for plant life. We went to the nursery and bought more plants for my butterfly garden. With three boys in tow, I made the trek. It was not as I expected. Surprise.

They’re very animated about the prospect of adding yet more plants. They’ve been animated since 7:30 this morning when they woke me up to tell me they counted 8 caterpillars on the milkweed. Yes, at 7:28 I heard the front door open and thought, “Good God. You MUST be kidding me.” At 7:30, I had a very joyful Bones at my bedside, “Mom, mom, mom, mom, mom, we have EIGHT caterpillars now.”

I’m staring at him thinking, “Go away little boy.”

He continues and says, “Hey! Can I see if Jessica can play now?”

In a half groggy voice I reply, “NO! We do not ask anyone to play until 10:00AM!” Grrr.

Back to the nursery. Son#1 knows exactly where all the butterfly plants are located. We follow him as he leads us to milkweed, butterfly weed, penta, and lantana. I figured we’d take the nicest looking plants, one’s that looked healthy, and load ‘em up. The End.

No.

At the House of Boudicca, one buys their plants based upon current caterpillar infestation. That’s right. The plants already had caterpillars on them, some did, and THOSE were the plants chosen for me to kill next.

I was not happy. We still had errands to run which meant there were going to be caterpillars IN MY VAN.

16 potted plants in my asexual mom-mobile later, I do believe I paid for about 20 caterpillars. Every store we went to next, whenever someone would drag their feet, I’d snap my fingers and with a low grumble say, “Leeeet’s get mooooving. There are caterpillars IN MY VAN!”

I don’t believe we left any behind. It appeared they were all still attached to plants when we set them in place. Planting is tomorrow morning. I struck a deal with the boys. No planting before 9AM. Otherwise, I was going to be awakened by one of them at O-Dark Thirty with a, “Mom! Mom! Mom! Mom! Can we go plant the plants now?!! Huh, Mom, Huh?!”

Posted by Boudicca at 09:56 PM | Comments (3)

Hopefully There Really *is* a Pot for Every Lid

My 10 year old had after school basketball Friday. I came by a few minutes early to watch, before picking him up. My two younger boys scampered across the field to play near some other kids they knew.

Standing next to me was a Mom who has 5 kids in 7 years, 4 of them boys. They’re great kids. Her eldest is in high school. She also assists in 2nd grade at our school. She’s a GREAT Mom.

I said, “My last one is going to be the end of me. It is incredible. He wears.me.out.”

We agreed every family has one and I should feel fortunate that only one of them is like that.

I told her, “I feel sorry for the woman that marries him. He is constantly on the go. He talks incessantly. He even talks in his sleep. And he always has to be touching you. He’s always in my space. If he crawls in bed with me, when he sleeps something has to be touching me, whether it be an elbow, foot or toe. It is constant. I feel bad for whoever marries him.”

She said, “Oh you say that now, but you’ll get to a point where eventually you pray that hopefully some woman WILL marry him!”

Holy crap. She’s right. There may not be a woman out there that’ll have him.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:42 PM | Comments (7)

May 13, 2005

Karnival of the Kidz- Elmo Ain't Cool

Karnival of the Kids! Entries are due by Sunday night- Midnight EST. I'm the hostess. So don't forget... Karnival.kidz (at) gmail (dot) com.

My submission for this week's Karnival... going into the way back machine of last June when I first started blogging, we have THIS story about Bones getting his innoculations. For months my #1 hit on Google was "Elmo Underwear".

Posted by Boudicca at 10:54 PM | Comments (1)

Golden Tree Frogs

Odd things I heard today:

Upon overhearing my 2nd grader talking to my kindergartner about the miracles that Jesus performed, “And… he even cured a man of Chicken Pox!” Hunh.

While traveling in the car to the grocery store this afternoon I heard my 5 year old tell me that the neighbors got a tree frog.

“They didn’t get a tree frog! They got a puppy!” yelled by 8 year old.

Looking in the rear view mirror I say, “Tree frog? How do you get a tree frog mixed up with a puppy?”

Bones said, ‘Mom, it’s a kind of dog. A golden tree frog.’

My 10 year old said laughing, “It’s not a golden tree frog; it’s a golden RETRIEVER!”

As my 10 year old walked over to play with the girls next door I said,”Hey! Dude! Watch out for that puppy!” He looked at me quizzically and said, “Why?” I replied, “Because… you know… It’s a puppy!” He snarled at me and walked away. Heh. I may get some serious mileage out of this. I won’t do it in front of his friends though.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:46 PM | Comments (1)

I Can Kill Them Still in the Pot

I am Queen of the Black Thumbs. I’m telling you, I managed to nearly kill my entire butterfly garden before we got the plants in the ground. That’s right. They started to die in the pot.

I know the kids were excited; they wanted a butterfly garden. We planted one last year, but unbeknownst to us; we planted it in bird central. All the early birds feasted on our caterpillars. So I understand this want to have another, but really, my husband should have known better. I want nothing else I have nurture. I’m over it.

I didn’t have time to plant on Sunday when I received them for Mother's Day. Monday was a zoo. Tuesday was a zoo. Come Wednesday, my eldest is freaking out they’re all dying. I looked at him and said, “Quit complaining. If you want to be part of the solution, water them.” He did.

Come Thursday I realized, we were in trouble. They were at death’s door and my kids were somehow going to be damaged by this. So last night, we planted the garden.

Today we have caterpillars. The kids are ecstatic. Bones is beyond elation. He goes running outside with a container.

“Wait!”, I yell. “Where are you going and what are you doing?”

Bones: I’m going to put all the caterpillars in this (pointing to a bug catching container he got for Easter in his Easter basket… the Easter Bunny is creative in our home) and bring them in the house to keep them safe.

Me: Whoa. Oh no you’re not. The caterpillars are staying out there on the milkweed. Leave ‘em alone.

Bones: But, Mom! The birds will get them…. (now he has gone into full meltdown and is crying hysterically for future lost caterpillars) … we have to save them before they die…

Me, completely over crying whining children, I feel NO compassion: No. If the birds start to eat them all, we’ll drop back and punt and change our plan. For now, the caterpillars stay on their plants.

My kids actually think that the way to make a butterfly is to capture the caterpillar, put it in a BIG GLASS jar, which they are bugging the ever living stew out of me to buy, with milkweed and a stick, then the caterpillar can spin themselves in the jar and once they turn into a butterfly, we release them.

We did that ONCE. Now, this is the way the Ecosystem is supposed to work… with glass jars acting as a safe harbor from potential predators.

I’m looking forward to my husband coming home. I’m starting to run on that hairy edge…

Posted by Boudicca at 10:38 PM | Comments (4)

The Competition

I am gaining muscle faster than I am losing fat. I'm just bringing back muscle I had not been using in my slacker months. I expect not much weight change even though my clothes are feeling much looser and my legs are noticeably toner.

Thursday:
30 minutes elliptical
30 minutes bike
100 crunches on the floor, alternating from middle to side to side

Today:
30 minutes in the weight room, back and triceps
30 minutes on the bike
50 crunches on the crunch machine with 5 lbs (I thought I’d vomit, 15 sllllooow and 10 fast)
50 on the stand

My husband is out of town, so I won’t be doing any cardio for Saturday and Sunday. I’ll do a 1 ½ hours on Monday.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:34 PM | Comments (2)

Carnival of the Recipes

I, Boudicca, am the hostess this week of the Carnival of the Recipes. Take a look at the recipes… I read through all of them… plus I perused the blogs. With over 30 entries, we have not only excellent participation, but a wide variety, from breakfast to dessert, from haggis to flourless chocolate cake.

What I do ask is that you forgive me if there are errors. Just let me know if you stumble upon one. There was a server problem for my blog site half way through posting. Luckily, I had been saving and when I realized the server was going down, I quickly copied and pasted what I had written into a word document. I hand coded in the rest of the post. That means…. there WILL be errors.

So take a look, enjoy, and get ideas for meals. If it is possible to gain weight just ‘looking’ at recipes, rest assured I did so tonight.

Slainte! -Bou.

Beverages
I was afraid at first when I realized my blog daughter Sissy of And What Next... decided to participate. Let's just say that some of her blogging has had to do with her 'kitchen adventures'. But then... she posted this recipe for The Crown of Roses... an alcoholic drink and I knew... all was right with the world. Phew!

Mr. Bingley of The Coalition of the Swilling has a recipe for The Caipirinha He has pictures and a translation of what the name of the drink really means... from Portuguese.

Laurence of This Blog is Full of Crap, has this political recipe. He asked I add a cocktail umbrella. Done.

Breakfast and Breads

OK, I say 'breakfast', but when my husband is out of town, breakfast=dinner. My kids consider it a real treat. "Mom, mom, mom, mom, Dad's out of town, can we have breakfast for dinner?" The answer is always… Yes.

Posted by Green Mountain by Fox Run at A Weight Lifted, we have Orange-Maple flavored French Toast. I gotta love a blog that states up front, "Healthy weight loss blog for women tired of dieting". There is some very interesting stuff over there... sensible, which I like.

From Taleena of Sun Comprehending Glass we have Coffee and Cream Rolls. Holy cow does this look good. She recommends a bread machine or KitchenAid with a dough hook. It just so happens I have a bread machine...

Elisson of Blog d’Elisson , posted a Breakfast Strata. It has sausage, cheese, eggs, bread… What more can you ask for? Plus he says it will feed a small Army or two desperately hungry individuals. I think my three sons qualify as a ‘small Army’. They can seriously put away some food. Bonus: they love sausage, cheese, eggs, bread…

Last week's Carnival Host, Kevin of TechnoGypsy, had a request for a recipe for the tall bread he had pictured during last week's post. This is his Pascha Bread (Lemko version). It sounds not only good, but interesting. He says "it has a very rich and sweet bread inside, so when cut it looks like an egg." Go take a look!

Salad
Caltechgirl of Not Exactly Rocket Science has her recipe for Tomato Mozzarella Salad. This is one of her favorite summer recipes as she uses her fresh grown basil from her garden. I like it also because it appears to be so adaptable to any number of people.

Doyle at A Cool Change, posts a recipe for Cucumber Salad. My favorite quote this Carnival is from Doyle, "I’m trying to translate from the measuring system I frequently use: the palm of my hand..." How many times have I done that when I've posted a recipe? Too many...

Tinker of The Secret Life of Shoes provides a recipe for us called Bengal Seafood Salad. This recipe is full of crabmeat and shrimp and is low fat and low calorie. It's a chilled salad, so it sounds like a great summer lunch.

Sides

Ozark Lad of Meeting Ozark Lad, has a post for Summer Easy Food. Corn on the cob and potatoes, both done on the grill. 'Tis the season for grilling, although here in South Florida that season is all year round!

Allan of Inside Allan's Mind has two recipes and since 'sides' is first on this post... his sides recipe gets first link. This recipe for Oven Fried Onion Rings is Weight Watcher friendly. Woo hoo!! I gotta love that!

Main Courses

Continental
David of Daily Pundit has this recipe for Chicken Casserole. It's crockpot friendly, has a good long slow cook time, and freezes well. Sounds like the kind of recipe we need in our hectic schedule...

Danny of JackLewis.net, has the following disclaimer for his 'Get-Thee-Behind-Me Fried Chicken', "(WARNING: This chicken is extremely addictive. The author and inventor of this recipe cannot be held liable for any overeating, weight gain, midnight cravings, etc. that result from eating this chicken.)" Ack! I don't know whether to test my self discipline or scream, 'Run Away! Run Away!!!!

I was torn here... I almost put this under Ethnic. Tell me if when you read this, you don't think HAWAII!! From Blog sister Oddybobo of BoBo Blogger we have Pork and Pineapple Kababs. This is cooked on the grill... which sounds like a GREAT summer dinner to me!

The second post from Allan of Inside Allan's Mind is also Weight Watcher Friendly and is for Chicken Stroganoff. It's a crockpot slow cooker recipe. YEEES! This is a definite hectic soccer night recipe at the house of Bou.


From Les, loyal reader of Daily Pundit, we have this Chicken for the Grill recipe. I'm drooling, folks. This one sounds good... he got me at 'marinade in Sherry for 12-24 hours"!

Chicken for the Grill Use one or two whole chickens, depending on your guest list and the capacity of your grill. Marinate the chicken(s) in sherry for 12-24 hours. The absolute worst sherry you can get seems to work best. Fairbanks is an excellent choice for this.

In a mixing bowl, dice in (not press) 15-20 garlic cloves (don't worry, you can't overdo this). Shred in 20-30 basil leaves with an equal amount of cilantro. Dice a whole Bermuda onion and add to the mixing bowl. Finely dice or shred one papaya and one mango and add to the mix. Stir until the ingredients are thoroughly mixed.

Stuff the birds with the contents of the mixing bowl and then truss the birds. Start your BBQ, with cherry or maple or hickory in the smoker box (mesquite is a non-starter on this one), spit the birds and start cooking. Make sure the smoker box gets replenished as needed.

When the breast of the chickens hits about 145 degrees, apply your BBQ sauce of choice. I've used off the shelf and homemade recipes and found no appreciable difference...given the flavors we've already put into the chicken. When the breast is at 175 or so, the chicken is done, and you have yourself the best damn chicken ever...at least in my humble opinion. Enjoy!


-------------------------------------------

Ethnic
I didn't think someone would do it, but leave it to David of Third World County to post a recipe for Haggis! OK, so it's modified... it uses calf body parts and beef. And it's cooked in a crockpot. David, as well as one of his commenters, say it's great. He even posted a Robert Burns poem. Oh, and he included a recipe for mashed turnips and potatoes, which he says is the traditional way to serve Haggis. So... here's the deal... y'all try this and e-mail me and tell me how it is!

Donna B of the Pajama Pundits we have Out of the Ordinary Spicy Tomato and Cheese Pasta. Good Grief, this looks yuumy.... and easy.

Jim of Frazzled Dad has a recipe for Garlic Oil Shrimp which he says is based on a Spanish Tapas. I LOVE shrimp and I LOVE garlic, so this is a must try for me.

My extraordinarily funny blogsister of Army Wife Toddler Mom has a recipe posted for Las Cruces Chicken Enchiladas. She PROMISES these are good. I believe her.

From Christina of Feisty Repartee, we have the first of two recipes, this one for Spanish-Style Orange Roughy. I'm still on my 'search for good fish recipes' kick, so I am adding this to my recipe file. She says it's easy and it looks it.

Merri of Merri Musings provided us Sausage & Spicy Tomato Cream Sauce Pasta. This looks fantastic and she says the leftovers are divine. That’s a bonus in this house since I can’t get Hunhead to eat leftovers… except Italian.

Shawn of Everything and Nothing, posted ”The Three Manicotti”. I clicked it and thought, “As opposed to Six Manicotti?” What she has here is THREE DIFFERENT recipes for Manicotti! Low fat/meatless, full blown meat/cheese, and triple cheese stuffed. Did I say my family loved Italian? Oh yes, my friends, and my boys love what they call ‘Cheese Tubes’. We’re all over one of these… or all of these… but on different nights. Hmm.

BJ of Quite Early One Morning, has for us Simply Good Pizza. Folks, I’m here to tell you, this is a no kidding real pizza recipe… a make the dough from scratch recipe… and BJ has PICTURES! It looks very very good. Did I say it looks very good. Oh.yes.it.does.

From Counter Top Chronicles we have Lamb Soup and Stuffed Grape Leaves. Mint, feta cheese... grape leaves. This sounds delicious.

Glittering Eye gives us Chicken with Fresh Herbs. This recipe looks quick! He makes the suggestion of having plenty of pita bread on hand for sopping up the juices after dinner! To see why I'm putting it under ethnic... you'll just have to go over and read.

Black Bean Quesadillas is the post supplied to us from Marie of Practigal. She has all the dietary information at the bottom as well as Weight Watcher points. Gotta love that! She also tells us from which cookbook this recipe comes... a recommendation from her.

Punctilious posts a quick and easy recipe for Penne Pasta with Sausage Sauce. Cooking with a Merlot! And it's quick!

ALa of Blonde Sagacity has this BLT Pizza. She says to make more than one. Her recipe is also complete with photos!

Desserts
David of Working it Out has a recipe for River Cherry Cobbler. He's got some cool stuff going on with this recipe. There's an easy way with Bisquick and a 'make your own cobbler' way. He has an oven method AND a campfire method. I know I have readers here who camp and re-enact, so take note. Very cool recipe.

My very own Blogdaughter, VW of One Happy Dog Speaks, has this recipe for Lemon Squares. I happen to know for a fact that VW is an excellent cook. Just sayin'...

This is the 2nd recipe submitted by Christina of Feisty Repartee and she is truly a woman after my own heart. It is just flat out wrong to post a recipe like this...Flourless Chocolate Cake with Kahlua Sauce. Good Grief!

From Songstress7 of News from the Great Beyond we have Chocolate Filled Aztec cookies. This looks very interesting... it calls for chili powder! Hmm.

Booklore presents for us Strawberry Tart, Tarts, and Pie. Complete with pictures, if you love strawberries, this is the stop. A suggestion to put the strawberry mixture over vanilla ice cream sounds divine.

Amy of Prochein Amy has a recipe for Whip Sandwiches. It's a dessert! Really! She says its something simple to satisfy a sweet tooth and she's right. Simple it is.

And... last... but not least, we have Individual Strawberry Baked Alaska from Deborah at Eat Your History. There are options on how to brown the meringue. Torches are fire and as I said before, I don't do fire in my kitchen! I'll stick with the broiler, thank.you.very.much!

A special thank you is in order for Beth of She Who Will Be Obeyed, who thought of this Carnival as well as keeps it running. So, thank you, Beth.

Next week's Carnival is hosted by Jordana of Curmudgeonry. Don't forget, the deadline is Midnight Thursday! recipe.carnival (at) gmail (dot) com.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:17 PM | Comments (12)

May 12, 2005

Different Drummers

The other day, I was sitting on the couch with my husband. I looked over at Bones' bedroom door, and he is standing in the threshold, wearing nothing but a tiny pair of sports socks... the kind that cover only your feet and don't even reach your ankle bones.

He's standing in the threshold, arms are flailing, dancing in a circle, little feet pattering around, head bent down watching his feet, and... he looks like the village idiot.

It's like a train wreck. I can't quit watching. He's in his own little world, dancing nekkid, to his own little music.

I nudge my husband. My husband looks over and rolls his eyes. I say to him, "You know, he got this from your family. My family is not so energetic. If your Mom were around, she could tell us. I bet you were like this."

He says, "I know, I know. Sometimes I think he needs to be medicated. My Mom probably thought *I* needed to be medicated. Thankfully, I outgrew it."

And we looked over and there Bones stood, grinning and dancing... hopping and leaping in place.

Sometimes I wonder what is going through that little 5 year old mind. Other times... I don't want to know.

A picture of the boy who marches to the beat of a different drummer in the extended entry...

sharkboy.JPG

(Click to Enlarge)

Posted by Boudicca at 11:24 PM | Comments (8)

The Plunger is Our Friend

My husband is traveling again. I'm never really myself when he's not around. The boys are a handful.

Since we built this home, nearly 10 years ago, we've always had problems with our septic. Our commodes clog up very easily. My husband thinks its the low volume commodes the builder put in. I think it's something much worse than that... something to do with how the house was built, but I try not to think of it much.

Anyway, the plunger is our friend. It is used about once a month, sometimes once a week. I'm surprised it isn't used more in the kid's bathroom.

To me, it is just flat out disgusting. When I'm finished with the plunger, I take it back into the laundry room and spray lysol all over it. However, disinfected or not, I know what it's been used for and I'm grossed out.

Today, I was on the computer sifting through the entries for the Carnival of the Recipes (which doesn't get posted until after midnight... even if I am finished!), when in bounces Bones... yelling,

"Mom, mom, mom, mom, mom, can I do this? Pleeeease? Let me! I NEEEVER get to do this! Please? Come on, Mom. Puuullease?!!!"

I look over at him and he is bouncing around my bedroom like some garden sprite, wearing only a football jersey and underwear, skinny boney legs dancing on my carpet, holding... the plunger.

Now fortunately, said plunger is kept in a bag, so he wasn't flinging the plunger all over. But still. I'm not happy that it's in my bedroom. Being danced with. Being treated as a prize.

I promptly told him NO and took the plunger from his hands and made a beeline for the boy's restroom.

I hate plunging. I'm so over it, it's not even funny. I get the commode unclogged and garden sprite boy is still hippety skippety all around me, saying, "Mom, mom, mom, mom, mom, do you think you got all the poop off that plunger? Huh, Mom, Huh?"

I'm rolling my eyes and he's following me, "Mom, I wanna watch what you do next. Mom, you need to clean it. Mom, I think it's still dirty. Mom, what're you going to use? Mom..."

And on... and on.. it went, as I got gunned down with 10 thousand questions... all spurred by a stupid plunger and a commode plugged with poop.

As I'm spraying down the plunger with Lysol he's still hovering.

He got this from his father's side of the family. He wears me out.

Posted by Boudicca at 11:18 PM | Comments (7)

May 11, 2005

Counting Sheep/Channel Surfing... Same Thing

I don't sleep well. It really started after the birth of my first child. It's more than midnight feedings and sick children though... it is the subconsious worry. Constant.

It hasn't improved. I feel certain this is an inherited trait from The Great Omnipotent One. I awaken every hour and a half. Nearly to the minute. Most of the time, I can fall back to sleep. Sometimes I cannot. If I am awakened during that 1 1/2 hour time I am actually sleeping, I cannot sleep the rest of the evening. I'm shot.

Which brings me to last night.

2:57AM... I hear a TV blaring and notice a light on in the family room. I stagger into the family room to find my 5 year old, sitting on the couch, in his underwear, clicker in hand, channel surfing.

Did I say it was almost THREE A.M.? I wasn't even nice. I just said, "What in the heck are you doing up. Do you have any idea what time it is? It's dark out! It's 3AM!!! GO TO BED!"

Well, he's 5. Of course he had no idea what time it was, but at 3AM, I am not always rational.

He got his little undy buns up and went to bed. Fifteen minutes later, he is at my bedside, telling me he wants to sleep with me. I'm past caring. I look at him and said, "Crawl in, don't wake me, leave me alone."

I'm so past any hint of civility, it's not even funny.

15 minutes later, he informs me his stomach hurts. I tell him he knows where the bathroom is.

I cannot believe how cold I was! There was no warm mommyness about me. Holy cow.

I have no idea if his stomach hurt. He is such a drama King. I hear him in the bathroom, spitting in the toilet, acting like he is going to vomit. He does not.

He comes back to my bed. If I was cold before, I am the Ice Queen now. I look at him and say, "Don't you vomit in my bedroom."

He asks me to come to his bed with him... which I did. I just wanted sleep. Just an hour. And if I'm going to clean up vomit, I'd just as soon it be out of his bed, and NOT MINE.

He was fine. I'm just hoping he did not inherit my poor sleep patterns.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:20 PM | Comments (10)

Carnival Reminder...

I think I said I'm the Hostess for the Carnival of the Recipes. I'm procrastinating putting this together. I'm afraid I'll fall off the food wagon!!

GEEZ.

Deadline: Thursday night, Midnight EST.

Send to: recipe.carnival (at) gmail (dot) com.

Update: Thanks to Caltechgirl for helping get the daggum address correct... finally. I've had some serious brain fog lately. Tonight should be interesting as I get all this stuff together.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:14 PM | Comments (6)

May 10, 2005

Things That Make Me Nervous

I have the three boys signed up for a 6 week soccer camp. The rec center we play with in the fall is fun, but I needed them to have some one on one time with a real soccer player and this guy is GREAT. He used to play pro in Europe, and he's now a ref for the rec league and he holds this camp, run by he, his wife, and sons.

I was hesitant to sign up Bones. As I said to the coach when I was tossing it around, "I believe he is a waste of soccer cleats." He told me to bring him and let him play around.

I did.

At the end of the practice the coach comes up to me laughing and says, "Is he a comedian or what?"

That makes me nervous.

I said something like, yes, he is a handful.

The coach carried on about how he cracked him up, the things he came up with.

I nodded and said, "Yup. Yup."

Then the coach said, "I don't care what sport you pick, you have to keep a kid like that busy. He needs sports."

Heh. That made me nervous too. It's not that he's wrong. He's completely RIGHT. It's just hearing it from a stranger. Blech.

I've got my work cut out for me.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:52 PM | Comments (3)

It takes all Kinds

We had a big fundraiser at the school last weekend. Big. Big. Big. The girl who ran it did a great job. Outstanding.

She is ballsy too. She has no qualms about asking someone for money. We're building a new school, so she has NO hesitation or problem with going up to somone and asking for 10 Grand over an extended period of time for the new school fund.

I, on the other hand, won't ask someone for 10 bucks.

We had a Home and School meeting tonight and we were supposed to speak. I have no issues speaking in front of people. None.

I called her last night and said, "Hey, when you speak tomorrow night.."

She cut me off and said, "Oh, no, no, no, no... I DO NOT speak in front of people. I will ask people for money, but I DO NOT do public speaking."

She's such a clown too. I was shocked.

So I spoke for her. No biggy. It takes all kinds. She'll get the school built. I'll tell everyone about it. I guess it works.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:45 PM | Comments (1)

My Turning Point

My blogfather Grau has a post up as to why he believes in a Higher Being. People have been chiming in with their stories in the comment section. Here is mine.

It was January of 1991, I was 25, and my paternal grandfather had just died. We three kids were very close to him, so there was no doubt I would make the homeward bound trek to attend his funeral. I had a flight from West Palm to Pensacola in one of those prop planes that seats 30.

The weather was nasty and the panhandle got socked in by fog, as it is prone to do. All flights into Pensacola were canceled and the aircraft was forced to make a landing in Tallahassee. From the Tallahassee airport we could decide what to do next, take a rental car to our destination or wait for the fog to clear up.

There was no way I was waiting for a flight in the happenstance the fog might clear up in the near future, so I decided on a car rental. Time was of essence as after getting to Pensacola that afternoon, the next morning I was to make the trek to Birmingham, to the family cemetery on my father’s side, with my siblings and folks for the service and burial.

The airline was quick, got me a car and off I went, hustling through the terminal, grabbing my bags, making my way… when I noticed… two elderly ladies holding on to one another, by the airline desk. I could overhear them and there was a fright about their voices and they seemed shaken. To this day, I have no idea what possessed me to step out of my box, but I approached them and told them I would take them home.

They were surprised at first, offering to pay for the car and gas and what-not, but I assured them, it was no trouble, we were all going the same way and the airline had paid for everything. I grabbed a dolly, loaded up their bags, got them situated in the car and began the 2 ½ hour drive westward to Pensacola.

The lady in the backseat was in her 80s, looking back on it. Perhaps mid-80s and she was blind. I believe she could see well enough to write and make out figures, but she had lost her vision to something degenerative, caused by the aging of her body. She was sweet; a good Christian woman.

The lady next to me was probably in her 70s and was very chatty and, as best I can describe, ‘dotty’. Flighty as some elderly woman can be. I am sure she was a crack up to her children and grandchildren.

Neither lady knew each other before this incident. They were just two elderly ladies in an airport, bound only by age and fright, when I stumbled upon them.

The fog was thick and the drive was tense, but the company was good as they asked me to tell them stories of my grandfather. There was a peacefulness in having them in the car with me and it made the time pass quickly.

We soon approached a small town called Niceville, which is situated near Fort Walton Beach, home of Elgin Air Force Base, and one hour outside Pensacola. The dotty chatty woman next to me was actually from Niceville, so I told her I would just take her to her destination, her daughter’s home, on our way to Pensacola.

As I made the turn off I-10 into Niceville, I said, “Now how do I get to your daughter’s home?”

“Well, I don’t know,” came the reply. “I don’t know where she lives.”

I was a bit taken back, but figured I’d find a filling station and give her daughter a call. This was before cell phones. I glance in the rear view mirror at the blind woman sitting in my back seat and she rolls her eyes at me.

“Well, what’s your daughter’s phone number?” I inquired.

“Oh, I don’t have her phone number,” said the woman.

I glance in the rear view mirror again and this time the blind lady’s eyes are round as saucers as she looks horrified but the conversation transpiring before her.

I start again, “Hmm. If you don’t have her phone number, then we’ll find a filling station and I’ll look it up in the white pages.”

“She’s not in the white pages. She’s unlisted,” said the dotty and now very annoying lady sitting next to me.

I wasn’t in a panic. I was too numb. I was grieving heavily for the loss of my grandfather, the drive had been stressful through the fog and during the drive, little thoughts such as “Wow, wouldn’t it suck if I died in a car crash in the fog on the way to Granddaddy’s funeral” kept passing through my mind. On the inside, I was a churning mess of grief and despair, but on the outside, I was collected and cheerful.

For those of you who do not know Niceville, it was a small town back then, but it had it’s own high school and grade school. It was big enough to support all a few schools. It is very spread out, as the panhandle is rural, so when I say small town, I don’t want you to think it was a ‘one blinking yellow light’ town with one stop sign and no post office. It’s not THAT small. It’s just NOT big.

We were now off I-10 and I just started driving. I have no idea why. I just took a right. Then a left. Then another left. And I ended up… in this cul-de-sac. As I slowly drove though the cul-de-sac the dotty woman next to me says, “Oh! Look! There’s my daughter’s house! And there she is, out front!” and she starts waving and carrying on.

Sure enough, there was her daughter, walking outside to get something from her car.

I pulled in the driveway, unloaded her bags, put the blind woman in the front seat, and started back to Pensacola.

It was quiet for a few minutes of the drive until I got back on I-10. Finally the blind lady said to me, “What just happened back there?” I said to her, “M’am, I have no idea. No clue whatsoever.”

We didn’t speak the rest of the way back to Pensacola. She asked for my address and I knew it was so she could write me a thank you note, so I pressed it into her hands as I saw her off.

Two weeks later I received a note from her, saying she hoped the funeral went well and that she thought I was an angel sent from God. She went on to say that what happened that day was without explanation and it was only the hand of God that could have seen us through, that I had arrived to drive them when they were in despair and how I had found one small home, amongst thousands, just on impulse.

I am no angel, by any stretch of the imagination and can assure you, I have never been called one since. It's not ever been alluded to. But, that was a turning point for me. In my heart it is when I knew for sure that there is more… and for those few minutes, I was completely connected.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:39 PM | Comments (11)

May 09, 2005

Carnivals, Karnivals, and Words

Sissy of And What Next... has her linky lovin' for last week's word of the week, Sylph, HERE. Funny how I now have incorporated the phrase, '19 year old sylph" as in a derogatory manner from THIS funny blogger.

This week's word is troglodyte. Lovely. Luckily, I've already used it, so the pressure is off for the rest of the week. I had to get that one out of the way. I can safely say, I'll never use that word again!

Now remember, you have until Sunday to use the word, at which point she links all the posts and then supplies the next weeks word.

If you do not tell her in her comments or do a trackback, she won't know or remember. So, to play the game, give her the feedback she needs to keep track.

Also, Carnival of the Recipes... deadline is Midnight Thursday, EST. Recipes from bloggers and non-bloggers alike to carnival. recipes (at) gmail (dot) com. I'm the hostess this week.

Karnival of the Kids is HERE. This week's hostess is Prochein Amy. Go take a look, grab some laughs, and have a good time. Thank you, Amy, for a job well done!

I'm the hostess for that next week... so get your entries started. Send your Kid related items to karnival.kidz(at)gmail(dot)com by Sunday, Midnight EST. If you don't send your link, it won't be in the Karnival. I won't remember... I have too many other things running through my brain as it is.

Not so many funny stories today in the House of Bou. Oh they happened, but I'm a zombaloid today and I'm crashing early. Slainte.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:39 PM | Comments (2)

Odd Searches

I'm the #4 search for 'funny green moving llama thing' on MSN.

I noticed Ogre wasn't on the list anywhere... hmmm...

Posted by Boudicca at 10:22 PM | Comments (1)

The Competition

Just for those in on it... the big Weight Loss competition...

Monday is the day I get lost in the gym.

1/2 hour running/walking on the treadmill
1/2 hour weight lifting (legs were today, I'll be a mess tomorrow)
1/2 hour on the bike

75 crunches with 5 lb added
15 obliques each side

I have no idea why I frickin' bother with obliques. I think I do them just so they're 'not left out'. It's not like I'm ever going to acquire a waist again. It's gone, long long gone... thank you three pregnancies. I'm cool with being shaped like a tube. I should be cool enough that I quit doing obliques...

Tuesday and Wednesday are days of rest. No gym time as I work and have too much to do with the kids.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:18 PM | Comments (5)

May 08, 2005

The Competition

Today starts the competition between VW and I for our weight loss goals. Amy of Prochein Amy has joined us!!! Anyone want to jump on board, feel free.

VW and I post on Sunday, Amy on Mondays. So this is considered my weekly post of accountability.

And just to set the record straight here... VW and I had a communication mishap. At breakfast the other morning I said something like, "Anita posts her weight on her blog. That's gutsy." It was something like that. Now... we're posting it on our blogs.

So as of this morning, I have lost 3.5 pounds this week, bringing me down to

129.5
I WILL get to 118. I'd like to get to 114, but won't beat myself up over it. I have more of a small framed athletic build, so I have muscle mass I have to consider.

Today, I didn't over do it and kept within my Weight Watchers 20 points, as well as I did 1 hour of cardio (30 min elliptical and 30 biking) and 120 crunches.

I don't want to lose over 1-2 pounds a week. The first week I always lose big. After that, it tapers down to what it should be.

I think VW stated I was competitive. We both are. I just unfortunately can become half insane. Harder, faster, better... it's never enough. I have to keep it in check or I will beat myself in the ground. That will be my obstacle.

I'll be posting intermittently, harrassing her about how much cardio I've done. As I said... I WILL lose it. BUT, she's going to give me a damn good run for my money. Guaranteed.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:31 PM | Comments (11)

My Mother's Day

Wow. What a day. I have been wished a Happy Mother's Day by many bloggers, and I want to thank all of you as I have been negligent in doing likewise! Thank you to Eric and Indigo in their links and Indigo... I hope you had a wonderful Mother's Day!

I got an e-card from VW. And then Sissy... wow, you just have to check out the poem written just for me posted on her site from my three blogchildren.. Brings a tear to my eye! It's just so nice they don't see me as a troglodyte.

And for my boys... this is funny... of course.

I was on the phone with Tammi, coming home from the gym and as I start to pull in the driveway, I see three little people carrying plants to the front yard. My husband is grinning and walks over to my car (damn, he's a nice looking man) and says, "The boys are setting up your butterfly garden. Can you drive around the block again?"

So I call Tammi back and tell her I know I got a birdbath and a butterfly garden. I am laughing and I say, "Is it just me? Am I the only one seeing the eocsystem here? The food chain...?" She is laughing too and saying, "Oh no, I see it too!"

I come back to the house and they are finished.

They take me out front and there is this great bird bath, just as I've wanted, and around it they have placed all the butterfly garden plants. I say nothing about the food chain. I am completely choked up by their, the four of them, thoughtfulness.

Suddenly, my 2nd son says, "Hey! We can't put these plants here! The birds will eat all the caterpillars! We have to move them!" I start to laugh, my husband looks at me and says, "Oh crap, I didn't think of that!"

It was just so funny.

We are now moving the butterfly garden to the center of my front yard. When complete, I will post a picture. When I finish my gardening around the birdbath... a picture will follow.

Don't hold your breath. I have a black thumb.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:14 PM | Comments (6)

Happy Mother's Day

It’s funny. Do you ever sit back and think about who your role model is? Who influenced you in ways you’d not really considered?

My personality, I am more like The Great Omnipotent One. I don’t want to delve into emotional stuff. I just want to leave things alone. I don’t like crowds. I don’t like to shop. I look at things analytically. I’m blunt and insensitive and can be a real pain in the neck to live with. I cuss like a sailor and don’t like fools. I am impatient. I like the South.

Going into my profession, I chose something more military oriented, something technical, very similar to TGOO. If I had gotten my Masters, chances are, it would have been in Operations Analysis like him.

But… that’s where it ends. I know, you’re thinking, “But that’s a lot!” But really, it’s not.

If you look at what my goals have REALLY been in my life… they were the most influenced by my Mom.

Mom was the one who encouraged me to play the flute. She was the one who encouraged me to join band and meet the friends I have. My best friend through thick and thin since I was 15, I met through band. Mom’s encouragement for me to go into music, probably helped develop my analytical brain.

My Mom is the one who encouraged me repeatedly to take a language, when discovered I had some aptitude. My Mother has some French ancestry, so that is the language I chose. People can say what they want about the French, but their language is beautiful and I still hope one day to become fluent. Her encouragement into languages also assisted in the development of my analytical skills… my neurological development.

My Mom is the one who took me to swim practice and encouraged me to take up an individual sport.

My Mom is the one who listened to my tales of woe through high school, when I chose to share, and set the stage for me to try not to take it all so seriously… that my time would come. She always had the faith in me… even when I had none. Which was often.

In my Mother’s eyes I was beautiful and brilliant, even when I loathed my new girl body and was failing Geometry. In her eyes I could do no wrong, even when I felt like I could do no right.

And when you look at what my goals in life really were… my long term ‘what path I want to take’ goals… if I really look at them and analyze, I may have followed a path similar to my father’s, but it was one heavily influenced by my Mother. My Mom was in fact driving the bus the entire time.

From the beginning I knew, I would go to college (from the earliest years, college was not an option for me to her… it was a given), I would get a job in the sciences, I would work for a few years carrying a brief case, I would make good money and be completely independent, I would find a loyal and good man, I would marry, I would be married a few years, then I would quit my job and have a family and stay home.

I just knew. She raised me to be independent. It was my Mom who I WATCHED Day after Day as she reared we three children, with TGOO mostly gone… as the life as a Naval Aviator’s Wife is one that is lonely and requires a woman to be strong and fiercely independent.

That is what she raised me to be. Strong. Capable. Family oriented. Giving. Loving. And through watching her, I knew that although I could never measure up to the kind of mother she was when I was a child or is as I am an adult, I wanted to try. She made it look easy. She made it look fun. In watching her I knew it was a life I wanted and needed to be fulfilled. The life of a Mother.

I have not regretted it for a minute. I watch her with my three sons and my heart melts. They love her so much; they cannot get enough of her. I have pictures of them hugging her and you can see their love for her in their eyes, the tightness of their grip, and the content expression upon their faces as they are held in her arms.

My life is what it is because of my Mom. She is a great Mom, but she is also my friend.

We did as other mothers and daughters do in middle school and high school… we fought… a lot. But I was never ashamed to be around my Mom. I loved being around her and still do. My Mom was the hip Mom, the Mom my friends loved to talk to, the beautiful Mom. My Mom had it goin’ on. At my high school reunion, it was my Mom and Dad my friends asked about. I’m not sure how many other people had classmates ask about their parents.

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom. In the end, may I be such a mother as to have my boys look upon me the way I look upon you. I love you.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:33 PM | Comments (5)

May 07, 2005

Bow to Me Oh Ye Recipe Addicts...

... for I am the hostess with the Mostess for this week's Carnival of the Recipes.

Quick reminder on the drill for those of you who have forgotten or for any folks that might not know:

All recipes to go to carnival.recipes(at) gmail (dot) com. (Remember... (at)=@ and (dot)=. Just sayin'...)

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO HAVE A BLOG!!! Just e-mail the recipe to that address and I shall receive it and post it on my blog, the day of. If you have a blog, I'll do the linky love stuff.

Deadline is Midnight EST Thursday. You folks out in PST are screwed. I'm the hostess... Midnight my time, dammit. :)

I guess that's it. Submit to me and ye shall receive... linkage on Friday.

Posted by Boudicca at 11:04 PM | Comments (6)

Carnival of the Recipes

The Carnival of the Recipes is up HERE at Techno Gypsy.

Seriously, go take a look as there is a really cool twist. It appears that Techno Gypsy is a Russian Orthodox and incorporates all sorts of cool facts about Pascha. Cool. Very cool indeed.

Oh! And GREAT recipes!

Posted by Boudicca at 10:35 PM | Comments (0)

A Friendly Competition

I’m in a competition. For weight loss. With my blog daughter, VW. Now I have no issues with that. Really. We figured we’d put it on our blogs just to carry on a bit and add a source of accountability.

What I didn’t count on is that she expected we would have to post our weight. Her rule. Blech. That starts tomorrow. Please keep in mind, when we start throwing out numbers here, I am NOT a big person. I stand 5'2" and I am considered small framed.

I have 15 pounds I WILL lose and 20 pounds I’d like to lose. I started last week and to see the advantages I have over her vs. what she has going for her… go to her POST, where she laid it all out.

I started losing this week, as y’all know. I’ve spent a good portion of the week asking myself how in the hell I gained 15 pounds in nearly 2 years. That’s a lot of weight to gain in that amount of time.

If you’re interested in how I got where I am, read it in the extended entry. I’m including pix in the extended entry… old pix I’ve posted before, so they’re all image shack. No surprises to my old readers. Well, except one.

Two years ago last June, I was 4 pounds off my goal. I was training, in some way, almost 10 hours a week. I had Karate for 5 hours, plus I was cycling, running or swimming for another 2-3 hours, then I had my strength training for an hour a week. I could eat just about anything I wanted. I was very fit and very toned, just in time for my 20 year high school reunion, although that was not my total motivation. I was training for my brown belt in Karate, which I received.

But around mid-June, I received my first sports injury. I wasn’t sure exactly what occurred, but upon visiting an internist he said he thought I had a light tear in my Achilles. His response was, “What are you doing? WHY are you training so hard?” I had no answer for him. I just was. I felt great and those who know me know… I am an endorphin junky. I don’t drink. I don’t do drugs. But… I am an endorphin junky. I never thought much more about his question; I just wanted myself healed.

I did everything he said and after 6 weeks, went back. I switched all my running to swimming a couple miles a day. I was doing anything I could think of to stay off the foot, with the exception of quitting Karate. I just dropped it down a bit, from 5-6 hours down to 3.

It worked for the most part, but the pain was moving and I was sent to a podiatrist, who told me, I had a bursitis. That was good news as far as I could tell. My arches were also falling… and so was the quantity of time I was training. Now I was training Karate 3 hours a week… with everything for a total of 5-6 hours. I was still eating at 8-9 hours of training. Over the next year, I gained 5 -7 pounds.

I never picked up my training again like I was. I was no longer motivated. I made 2nd brown belt, but there was much in fighting in my dojo… dojo drama. I was trying to stay above the fray, but my Sensei’s wife was this lunatic and I started to become less and less motivated. I also injured my rotator cuff.

September came, we got nailed by two hurricanes and for the entire month, I didn’t train. At all. The gym was closed and we were all in survival mode. I picked back up in October… Karate 2X a week and with everything, I was probably averaging 3-4 hours… while still eating at 8-9. It increased my weight gain to 10 lbs total.

This is around that time. (Gotta love those sexy boots, huh? Side note... do not buy black rubber boots if you live in Florida for hurricane clean up. Your feet burn up.)

End of February, my dojo closed. Thank God. It was the best thing that could have happened to me. They were sucking the life out of me, the perpetual dojo drama. I hated going. I didn’t find another dojo, I’m burned out on Karate and anything having to do with it, after three years of training, I’d rather own a gun. And… additional bonus, my rotator cuff is significantly better.

If you remember, Feb and March were high stress times for me. I was all about getting through hour by hour. With my dojo closed, I was getting no cardio other than an hour or two at the gym, a total of MAYBE 2-3 hours a week doing anything at all. I took up carbs and chocolate instead.

Say hello to another 5 lbs.

So, that’s how I ended up at 15 over. I need to take it off, but my attitude is different now. It is not about cardio. It is about eating right and cardio happens to be good for my heart.

This is at 13 lbs over. I hate this picture.
March2005.JPG

At my peak performance 2 years ago, I was wearing a size 2-4, resting pulse was 55, bp was 90/60 and cholesterol was 148. I was bench pressing 100 lbs, leg pressing 200 and my physical endurance was nearing it's peak.

Now… I just want to be comfortable in my clothes… size 2-4. I’ve laid off the bench pressing because of my rotator cuff. I do a lot of bands for my shoulders. I’m leg pressing around 250, but I don’t have big hulky man legs. I’ve been blessed with nice lean gams, courtesy of my Mom’s side of the family. Taking the 15 pounds off will show the muscle definition.

My waist is gone. Period. I am shaped like a tube and it is what it is. Three kids made sure I don’t have that hour glass shape. Well, that and the fact I’m a small chested woman. I’ve made peace with the fact I’m not shaped like the 19 year old sylph women you see in the mags. I’m cool. I’ve made peace with the fact my stomach will never be flat and I will never have more than a 4 pack.

I’m a 39 year old mother of 3. I have a woman’s body. I just want to be fit, healthy, and fit in my clothes.

Tomorrows Post… The Competition Begins.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:29 PM | Comments (11)

May Crowning

On Friday, the school had what they call “May Crowning”. It is a Mass and all the kids grades K-4, bring flowers to lay at the altar, at the feet of a beautiful white porcelain statue of Mary. It is a Mass that honors Mary… I find it fitting that Mother’s Day is in the same month. Perhaps Hallmark planned it that way. Who knows?

I don’t go to the Masses at school. As I have said in the past, I am not Catholic, nor do I intend to convert. They have Mass the first Friday of every month and I attend the May Crowning Mass when I have a child that has had their First Holy Communion that year. Those children wear their Holy Communion outfits to the Mass and have special duties. It is very sweet and that is what brought me to the May Crowning Mass. Son#2 was a participant.

I sat off to the side with one of my friends who had a son that is in Son#2’s class. As the kids from the school quietly came into their pews, I noticed that my eldest son’s class ended up sitting in the pews adjacent to me, with my son sitting in the one right behind me. I know all the boys in the class, so as they walked down the aisle to their pew, all the boys would give me a little wave as they went to sit down.

So here are some highlights from the Mass, a couple things that made me laugh and one that stole my heart… other than watching my 2nd son.

One of the altar boys passed out during the Mass. I felt horrible for him, but of course the entire church was a twitter over this as it occurred. That was not funny in itself, but it was the drive home that was. The name has been changed, but it is SO Irish, I picked one I felt is equally Irish for effect.

Son#2: Mom, Mom, Mom, Mom, did you see? Seamus O’Malley’s brother, Sean, was an altar boy and he passed out during the Mass!

The two other boys are shouting in unison, “Mom, mom, mom, its true! We saw it too!” I reply that I did in fact witness the event.

Son#2: You know how he passed out? Seamus says Sean has passed out FIVE TIMES before! He says he passes out because all the blood leaves his head, all of it, and it goes to his feet!

I am not looking at him in the rear view mirror, one eyebrow cocked, and say, “Realllly? Did he say HOW all this blood leaves his head and ends up in his feet?”

Son#2: Nope. He just said that it happens when he kneels or stands too long. You know, Mom, he was only passed out for a couple seconds. I was surprised. I thought when you passed out, you passed out for HOURS. Huh.

Of course we had a long discussion with regard to passing out, being knocked out, comas and the like. I was drilled with questions for 20 minutes. It was an exhausting conversation. All because one little boy fainted on the altar. You just never know what the catalyst will be.

Back to the Mass, there was a woman sitting behind me who had an 18 month old. As all parents can attest too, 18 months old can be a real beast. Strong willed, unable to communicate fully, and prone to tantrums, I truly think it is one of the more difficult ages. This little girl was no different.

Sitting catty corner behind me was one of my son’s best friends. This little beasty 18 month old would walk right up to him, get in his space, and stare. The boy would just stare back. He was completely stoic. Beasty girl would walk away.

Beasty girl then had a lollipop, and she was laying all over the aisle, literally, lollipop in mouth. I gather this is the only thing that would shut her up, although it made me nervous. Eventually Beasty girl had had enough, and starting throwing her lollipop on the ground. I could see it coming a mile away, I don’t know if the mother did not or was choosing to ignore. A small storm was abrewin’ in this little girl. Finally, she picked up her lollipop and she pegged it at my son’s friend, nailing the kid in the leg. Now of course it didn’t hurt, but the entire pew broke out in laughter, including his friend, at the shock of this boy being pelted with candy during Mass.

It was funny. Luckily, the mother picked up the girl and left at that point. I can’t wait to see him next so I can harass him about his being a menace to small children, forcing them to protect themselves by throwing candy at him.

But I think what made the Mass for me, was something that happened at the end. I think I have said before, I love the Pastor of their school and church. Father is in his early 70s and is the quintessential Irish priest. White hair, big belly, thick glasses, and a ruddy complexion, he is a kind man, but a very wise man, an intellectual, and the children love him. Bones still tells him he cannot wait to ride the Ferris wheel with him next year.

It is the end of Mass and Father is walking down the aisle behind the altar boys, and he is greeting the children of the school. Off to the side is one of the mothers with her 3 year old. They are parishioners of the church. The little boy, who is truly one of the most beautiful children I have EVER seen, blonde hair and blue eyed, a gorgeous and happy child, suddenly shrieks, “HI! FATHER!” Father turns and sees him and smiles and waves. I hear the little boy say to his mother, exasperated, “PUT ME DOWN!” which she does and off he runs, to the middle of the aisle and grabs Father’s hand and says, “How are you Father?”

Father is smiling, everyone is laughing, and Father proceeds to continue down the aisle while holding this little man’s hand. The little guy just kept chattering as Father listened, and replied, but still greeted the other kids as he took up the rear of the processional.

I will never forget that scene. It is permanently melted into my heart. It is a vision in my brain, permanently filed away in my memory bank.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:30 PM | Comments (2)

May 06, 2005

Blog Mother's Day

David at Third World County has started a different type of Meme. No, I am not requiring y'all to do anything.

It's a BlogMother's Day Meme. He has the explanation of it HERE. So what this Meme has you do is send an e-card to your Blog Mom. That's it.

But see... this is where it gets interesting, because... I don't have a BlogMom. I have TWO DADS, Grau and Harv.

Hmm. What to do, what to do. I don't think either of them has fessed up yet as to who the 'woman' is in this blogospheric oddity. Perhaps they both need a card...

Feel free to play. I'm tagging nobody.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:45 PM | Comments (11)

Donkeys, Cigarette Butts... but No Female Dogs

Age 5, where everything is literal. Ages 8 and 10, where you try to get away with saying curse words by using their alternate meanings.
For example,
Son#3: “Mommmmm! He called me an ass!”
Son#2 looking at me all sweet and innocent: Whaatt? I only called him a donkey. What’s the big deal?

Tonight, the boys are playing on their Gamecube and obviously Bones was being his typical annoying self. One day they’re going to haul off and beat the ever living snot out of him and I’m not going to interfere. I know how they feel. He gets under my skin too. So he’s annoying the stew out of them, touching them, carrying on, laying on them, being a nuisance and a pest and they lose whatever game they’re playing as a result.

There is much weeping and gnashing of teeth by the older boys who are now name calling, but have yet to resort to ripping off his arm and beating him with it. Not that the thought has not crossed their minds…

Finally, tearfully, the wronged and always victimized Bones comes into the family room, crying his tears of woe and heart ache to his father. I’m stoically watching.

Bones: I don’t get it Dad? Why are they so mean to me?

Dad: Because you are being a pest.

Bones: Noooo. That’s not it. They’re always mean to me. They’re always calling me names and I hate that. Like last night, when I was watching Sillyville. They called me a fag. They’re not allowed to call me that! We’re not allowed to call each other Cigarette Butts.

With that, I promptly turned around laughing to myself, and finished cleaning the kitchen counters.

Minutes later, I could hear his father counseling him.

Dad: Bones, you need to look within yourself and find out why they are doing these things.

Son#3: I can’t do that!!! I can’t turn my eyes around and make them look inside my head and body!

Dad: No, no, no, I mean you need to think about what you’re doing that is aggravating them….

And so it went. The literal 5 year old and his older brothers… the 5 year old being victimized yet again, by being called a cigarette butt. It’s tough to be him.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:32 PM | Comments (6)

Do They Have Meetings for This?

Hi. My Name is Bou. I’m an “office supply/kitchen gadget” addict.

What in the hell is my problem and am I the only one? I’m serious, it’s a problem. I cannot walk into a kitchen or office supply store without losing all sense of rationality. Really.

I can buy office supplies like some women talk about buying SHOES! NO kidding! I know that when I walk into Office Depot, the little phones the workers wear go off with some hidden code that means, “She’s here! She’s here! We’ll DEFINITELY meet our quota today!”

I walked in the other day to buy a new printer. I walked out with a new printer, a box full of highlighters, a package of 600 #2 and jumbo size vinyl coated paperclips, and a stack of multi-colored sticky notes. I did not need EIGHT MORE highlighters. I did not need 600 paperclips… of assorted cool colors I might add. And I DID NOT NEED any more daggum sticky notes… in any color. Before I went to the store, I had them in purple and blue… lined. I had them in yellow, two sizes. I had them in hot pink, small. Now I have them in standard size, shaped like a cube, in cool stripey colors. Holy crap. I have a problem.

You’d think with as much organizational and office supply junk that I buy that I’d have a very organized office space. It’s not. Don’t go there. Let me just say that the expression The Great Omnipotent One uses when the garbage gets too high and needs to get taken out, “This could fall over and crush someone to death!” would apply to my desk area and the paper issues I have.

So this brings me to today... and the kitchen store.

I’m making a cake for a meeting I have tomorrow morning where we’re having a bake sale. I remembered a new cake supply store down the street from me so I stopped in to buy a box. (It is yet another evil store I need to stay away from. Have I told you I love to bake? Oh yes. And I am good at it too.) I noticed that next to the cake store was a kitchen gadget store. I could.not.resist. The pull from the store was too great.

They had me at ‘hello’.

I bought some circle cutter things of various sizes so I can make dumplings (I’ve never made them before… but you never know… I MIGHT!) or homemade biscuits (I’ve never made them before… but you never know… I MIGHT!) or homemade doughnuts (I’ve never made them before… but you never know… I MIGHT!)

I bought ANOTHER set of measuring spoons because… they felt nice in my hand and looked really cool and they were sleek and new... and I love things that measure. One cannot have enough rulers, measuring spoons, protractors, or measuring cups.

I bought new 9” cake pans… non-stick… heavy duty. I did need those. Mine are getting icky and as I said, I bake a lot.

Then I left. I was afraid to stay as I’d already spent way too much money. Measuring spoons that fit nicely in your hand are expensive. So are heavy duty 9’ cake pans.

I think there is something wrong with me. I already have the entire store mapped out in my head, completely memorized so I know where to get what next time I go in. Same with Office Depot.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:28 PM | Comments (11)

May 05, 2005

Posts that Got Me Giggling and Laughing

Holy crap.

My blogchildren are so far more creative than I, it is scary. I cannot believe they are not ashamed to have me as their blog Mom.

First I went over to Sissy’s where she had her answer to the Turd in a Punchbowl. She too did hers in limerick form and it is far better than mine! Hell, her title was better!

Then I moseyed on over to VW’s where she actually thought about looking up poop poetry on-line and came up with THIS… and in it I gather from revenge, I get poop flung at me.

Lastly, I wandered over to Contagion's where… well… you gotta read it. I could not quit laughing. I’m not sure if it was the writing or the damn ingenuity of it all. He wrote his to the form of ‘The Raven’ by Edgar Allen Poe. It is frickin’ hysterical.

It was the 2nd funniest post I read all day… the first being THIS post. Obviously, I have my mind in the potty today.

Ahh… you creative people crack me up. Thank you to my blog children for participating and making me laugh and thank you to Eric for eating those Chicken Kickers and then posting on it.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:33 PM | Comments (2)

Announcements from The Management

I have some blog announcements to make.

First, blogsistah soulsistah, Tammi is no longer a Road Warrior, but has now moved to her new digs at Tammi’s World. All you bloggers change your linky stuff. All you non-bloggers, change your bookmarks. And I have to thank Little Elf for posting her Eye Candy. Party going on over at Tammi’s until she gets back on-line...you’ll know the place. There is a fireman guarding the post…


My prolific blog father, Harvey, is truly having a difficult time keeping his pants on as of late. Wait. Did I say as of late? Cross that. Per the usual, he didn’t keep his blogospheric pants on, wasn’t practicing blogosphere safe-sex, and went and procreated again!

My new blog sister is First Broken Angel of AAFFLLAACCKK! Her ‘about me’ post is HERE. She has had an interesting life… but her attitude is what sees her through it all. An amazing woman.

My new blog brother is Aris_Ravencroft, a frequent twister of Harv’s Love Notes. His blog is Custos Honor. He has enlisted in the Marine Corps and reports the 3rd week of May to San Diego for recruit training. My blog daughter Sissy will keep us updated on his status when he leaves.

We have a lot of Marines in our family, Harv… Did you notice?

So welcome my new blog siblings and update your blog rolls. And for a different twist to what Sissy said to Harvey last time he procreated, “get that man some blog Trojans!” I still think he is looking to take over the blogosphere… slowly… one… blog… at.. a … time.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:27 PM | Comments (2)

Not Everyone Calls it a Cup

Remember, Sunday Midnight… entries to karnival.kidz (at) gmail (dot) com. This post contains my entry!

This is not from my blog archives. Before I started my blog, I would write things that occurred in my life, and e-mail them to family and friends. I have them all saved. Archived. I pull them out sometimes. I’ve posted one or two here and will continue to so. An example of posts I’ve written from e-mails I’ve sent to my friends are my entire series of the rat in my car, in order. Part I, PartII, PartIII, PartIV, and PartV for those who are new readers.

Anyway, I was over at Anita’s of Fighting Inertia and she had this funny frickin’ post on her son and baseball and his ‘cup’. I was glad to see I am not the only other Mom that is stunned by ‘cup talk’. I’m telling you, it was a shocker to me. As Anita put it in her post, “I ask you. I don't remember yelling out to my girlfriends, "Hey, Susie, are you wearing your training bra today?" Funny post. Go take a read.

So this reminded me of this incident that happened two years ago and is my official entry to the Karnival of the Kids. You’ll find it in the Extended Entry. I originally called this, My Life with Three Boys. Other than names, it is unedited… it is exactly as I e-mailed it.

Here is my latest story. It has been awhile since some of you have heard from me. My life is still as chaotic as ever.

For those who knew me in High School, I think it is safe to say “prude” and “ice queen” come to mind. Before I start this story, you have to know that that has changed, as evidenced by the fact I actually found a man who would marry me, even if I did have to chase him down like a dog. However, one thing has not changed. I still believe that there are some things as a woman I just have no business having to contend with. Just as there are certain items I would never send my husband out to buy, there are certain male aspects of life I just as soon not deal with. “Too much information, please”, comes to mind. Men’s sports protection fits in this category. As luck would have it, I have been blessed with three boys, so no matter how much I fight knowing more than I want, it creeps upon me and suddenly I am knowledgeable in areas no woman should ever have to be acquainted with.

My two older boys are in Karate and they have a tournament this weekend. This tournament includes free sparring. They wear foam helmets and assorted protective gear. For the boys, cups are required. I have been aware of this for a few weeks and informed my ever loving husband, that this was without a doubt, a father’s area of expertise and I had neither inclination nor desire to be included in the ‘cup shopping’ or even the discussion of such. Also, let me state up front, that knowing full well that this would fall to me eventually, I had been discretely discussing my options with other mothers trying to figure out how they have handled it and what to do. To my dismay, a great announcement was made to the entire kid’s class one afternoon that “All boys must wear cups at this next tournament”. Expecting more discretion in this area than what was being provided, I found this to be uncomfortable, but realized I was now officially entering a new world, even if I was kicking and screaming the whole way.

Off my spouse went to Sports Authority, all three boys in tow, to buy this gear that I have never even seen before. Back he came… with the wrong size. It was not intentional and in retrospect, I do understand why this occurred. At the time, I was not amused. We now have one week until the tournament, my husband's schedule is heavy with clients, and the resolution to the cup buying fiasco has now fallen squarely upon my shoulders, as I had suspected would eventually happen.

My father, at this point, finds this whole situation exceedingly humorous and wants me to walk in with my small boys, walk up to the counter big as day and announce to the salesman, “I’ll take 2 large cups please”. I am not sharing in the humor.

I drop the two older boys off at the dojo for practice and take my 3 year old to a small sports shop down the street. Lesson Learned: Never take a verbal 3 year old with you to buy an item that you do not want discussed publicly. I walk in as if I know what I’m doing with the theory that if I look like I know what I’m doing, salespeople will not approach me… at all. We find the wall. It is full of cups. Different sizes, different makes, different colors, different materials. I have arrived in a foreign land and I do not speak the language. I am at a total loss. Bones looks at the big wall and instantly recognizes at what we are looking. Bones never talks. Bones only shouts. So says he, in his shout, “Mom! Look! Weenie protectors!” I am mortified. From where did this name come and why must we discuss it? I quietly said, “Yup.” He shouts again, “Mom. We have weenie protectors. Two of them. We don’t need any more weenie protectors”. I am looking for a hole to crawl in at this point and I have quietly started my new mantra, “I do not belong here, I do not belong here, I do not belong here.” I’m looking at them and the look of knowing what I’m doing has evidently disappeared and has been replaced by a look of bewilderment as I am now being approached by one of two salesmen in the store. He asks if he can help me, I take a big breath, and proceed to act like I do this every day and by the way, yes I do need your help.

I get a course in cup buying. I am now looking at the different brands and those that come with underwear vs. those that don’t. It is clearly more education than I desired, but I was on a mission that must be completed. Meanwhile, my three year old is at my legs, mumbling something repeatedly about weenie protectors. I take on the attitude that if I can’t hear him, the salesman can’t either. The salesman has pulled out all these articles of ‘clothing’ at this point and is explaining to me what I need. He has taken them out of the packages and placed them in my hands as he is sorting through them. I am dying a slow silent painful death.

The salesman and I are finally finished. Bones, however, is not. He looks up at me with his round face and quietly says, “Mom, maybe you should buy 3 of these. You know, Son#1 needs one too.” This child actually expects that one of these is for him, after all, why should he be left out? I look at him and reply, “These are for Son#2 and Son#1. I only need two.” Holy Hell broke loose. Suddenly I have a three year old, screaming like a banshee, “I want a weenie protector too! It’s not fair! Why do they get weenie protectors, but I don’t?!!! It’s not fair Mom.” I somehow get him quieted as I pay and leave. I am not going back there. Ever.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:18 PM | Comments (5)

May 04, 2005

An Icky Meme... Blech

I got tagged for a gross Meme and I’ve been working on it. I’m not sure how it is that I have no issues with cussing, I can cuss with the best of them, but man, there are some words I just cannot put in my verbal dictionary. One of them is the evil ‘c’ word. The other is in this Meme. I can say shit, and not be grossed out, but this word… yuck.

It’s making you wonder now, isn’t it?

Blech.

OK. I now give you the answer to David’s tag to me for The Turd in the Punchbowl Meme. You can see his entry at Third World County HERE. I told him I could very well hate him for this. I’m not creative. I stink at this. No pun intended. The last time I did anything with Poetry was when Bones caught a stomach virus right after one of the hurricanes and I did Puke-Us… which were Haikus dealing with vomiting. (You can see them HERE where there are some additions in the comments.) Lovely, huh?

So as David put it on his blog:

As I understand it, the assignment is to 1.) write a lil ditty built upon the phrase "Turd in a punchbowl." 2.) spread the lil meme to three others.

My response to his tag:

There once was a boy from Peru
His crap smelled foul like from a zoo
A turd in a punchbowl he saw
Then he looked at his Ma
And said, “That turd is not my smell of poo!”

There you have it folks. Bending the limits of my creativity. I’ll keep my day job, thank you very much.

And I get to tag three more people with this awful Meme, which means… heh… My blog daughter VW, my blogson Contagion and my other blog daughter Sissy. Ahhhh… the wonderful thing in having blogspawn. You can tag them with your Memes.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:08 PM | Comments (15)

Matthew, Mark, Luke and John

My blog brother Peter of Shakey Pete’s Shootin’ Shack has a new grandchild. A boy. John Mark. We’re awaiting pictures.

I read his post and thought, “This sounds like something The Great Omnipotent One would write.” Heh. TGOO has no granddaughters yet. Not one.

This quote from Peter’s: ‘He joins his two brothers and three male cousins in the solemn duty of protecting my only Granddaughter's virtue.’

I’m telling you, if I had had one daughter in that bunch o’ boys I have, TGOO would say something EXACTLY like that. Cracked me up.

Go on over and wish them well. Babies are so yummy. May Peter have many many sighs of contentment upon his shoulder from his new grandson.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:42 PM | Comments (4)

Listen Carefully for the Contented

Babies have a sound that will make my heart melt. Sometimes when you hold a baby, they have been fed, they are dry, and they’re content… they’ll lay on your shoulder and sigh. It’s a double breath intake and then one long outtake. It’s a sign of contentment and every time I hold a baby and it does that… I melt. Babies have me at 'the sigh'.

As children get older, you don’t hear this so much. Life is now full of whining and fighting intermingled with laughter. Suddenly life got ‘hard’ and someone always has the short end of the stick (Why does HE get that piece? Why does HE always get to go first?) or is being poked by the stick (HE touched Me! HE looked at me! He’s sitting on my side of the car!). The sighs of contentment become less frequent. You catch them and remember them when you can.

This morning was one of those mornings.

It was hectic. My husband left at 5:00 AM with my eldest for a 4th grade field trip to Cape Canaveral. One of the many bonuses of living in Florida is the space program. At my old place of work, we’d all go downstairs to watch the shuttle launch. You could see it from your backyard. And...you have not lived until you’ve watched a multi-staged rocket separate after launching into the atmosphere, at twilight. As each stage separates, beautiful colors swirl in a kaleidoscope of pinks and purples. It is breath taking.

With my husband having to leave at 5AM, I didn’t sleep for fear of their not getting up in time, my eldest awoke at 3:30 with excitement and my middle son, never to be outdone, awoke at 3:35. Needless to say, the house was a tired and active house way too early this morning.

That left me, half asleep and in a fog, to get the other boys ready and take them to school. I’m trying to be chipper and get them moving as I make lunches, breakfasts and continue to check on them.

Bones was staring at himself in the mirror contemplating life and his toothbrush, when I went to his drawer to get him some socks. I picked out the socks and thought, ‘Wow, where’d he get these? These are soft.” I went back into the bathroom, lifted his foot while he brushed and as I put the sock on his foot… it happened.

I heard a deep breath, a big sigh and he said quietly, “Oh, I looooove these socks.”

That was it. Complete contentment in a pair of warm soft socks first thing in the morning.

Suddenly what was starting out as a weary and hectic day seemed just right.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:39 PM | Comments (9)

NASA Does More Than Space Work

Since my sons have been able to talk and express an interest in being an adult, I have talked to them about my profession. I don’t talk about it a lot, but they know what I do and what the companies I have worked for have done. To no avail, not one has ever wanted to follow in my footsteps. They all want to do what their father does.

I’m not saying his career is a bad career. It was an excellent career choice… for him. I just hate the thought of my boys going into something just because that’s what Dad does and what his father before him did. Third generation profession.

I have spoken to them about scientific research and the technical fields. Not enough Americans are going into either. We have bright young minds lured away from research by big money in other industries. It is a shame really. We are such a materialistic society.

Today… today NASA was able to do in just a few short hours what I have been unable to do in 8 years with my 10 year old. They have turned him on to my realm.

That makes me happy.

Posted by Boudicca at 08:35 PM | Comments (0)

May 03, 2005

Pushed to the Point of Apathy

I hate having to stand in front of a group of people and say, "All the Kings horses and all the King's Men, couldn't put Humpty back together again. Your organization is history. I could not save it. It now has DNR written all over it. Time to disband and move on."

I don't like delivering bad news, but that is what I'm doing tomorrow. I have gone through their process, I have flowed it out, I have fixed the pieces. I brought down their overhead considerably... but it was not enough.

One of the philanthropies I work with, a small group, part of a big national organization, needs to move on.

I tried. I put a lot of time into it. I did what I could, but I knew going in it was not salvageable and I gave them the heads up at the Fall meeting. I told them at our Winter meeting what our options were... one being to fold.

That's the best option. I think I will be looked at as the hatchet man, but quite frankly, I don't give a damn. I don't have time anymore and I don't want to fix anyone's organization. I don't want to revitalize and rejuvenate. Been there. Done that. Successfully I might add. I'm over it.

I am standing before them tomorrow to give them their three options... and if they pick the option other than 'to fold', I am telling them, 'Good Luck, I'll keep you in my prayers, I'm history."

I've put the word out on the street that it's over for me. They drained me. They're on their own.

The event I put on was a tremendous success... but not a miracle. And a miracle is what they needed to bring that patient from the brink of death.

They don't blame me. They sing my praises.

I'm over it. Tomorrow... it's done. Over. Finito. One less thing for me to worry about. I don't care how much they cry and there will be tears. I don't care how angry they will be and there will be heated words.

I.Just.Don't.Care. Apathy is worse than hatred.

Posted by Boudicca at 10:43 PM | Comments (7)

May 02, 2005

Sally and the Karnival of the Kids

Sally has this week's Karnival of the Kids up and she did a GREAT job. You can see it HERE.

Look close and you'll see a great picture of my blog family partying as babies.

Funny stories, great pictures, linky love... go take a look.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:53 PM | Comments (0)

Sissy's Word 'O The Week

As I said below, Sissy has started the Word of the Week. Last week was Amalgamate and this week is Sylph. Use them on your blog, then post in her comments the post you used it in, or send her a trackback,and her Sunday linky lovin' will include your post for us all to see where it's been used.

This reminded me of a game she has played with my sister. (Correct me if I am wrong, Napster, Cowboy or Sissy.) A group from work played this game where there was a word of the day. There were five players and each player was assigned a specific day where they were required to use the word of that day. They were required to send an e-mail to someone, business related, utilizing this word... BUT the person could not be within their group (i.e. not one of the players) and they couldn't use that person more than once and it had to be BY THE END OF THE DAY.

There were some funny frickin' stories that came out of that. I am sure it's what has inspired the word of the week. Cracks me up.

So, if you're so inclined, go on over to Sissy's and play. This week's word located at her site: Sylph.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:45 PM | Comments (3)

Blog Readability

Sissy has something she has started… a vocabulary word of the week. She found this site HERE, where you put in the URL for you blog and it tells you what grade level you are writing to. She was horrified by her score, so she started the word of the week.. (Go 1/4 of the way down the page to where you enter the URL, hit calculate and then scroll down ¾ down to see your scores.) See the above post for more details on her Word of the Week.

I was not so thrilled with my score. First, about my score:

Readability Results for http://boudicca.mu.nu/
Readability Results
Summary Value
Total sentences 1,937
Total words 16,734
Average words per Sentence 8.64
Words with 1 Syllable 12,737
Words with 2 Syllables 2,881
Words with 3 Syllables 832
Words with 4 or more Syllables 284
Percentage of word with three or more syllables 6.67%
Average Syllables per Word 1.32
Gunning Fog Index 6.12
Flesch Reading Ease 86.18
Flesch-Kincaid Grade 3.38

My ‘Gunning Fog’ score was 6.2, along the level of a TV guide. Of course they threw The Bible and Mark Twain in there too as examples, but I can’t get past the whole TV guide thing. Poor Mark. If he only knew…

The Flesch Reading Ease says, the higher the score the easier to read. Writers are encouraged to write around 60-70. Yeah, caller, I blew that one.

I’m ignoring the Flesh-Kincaid Grade which is years of schooling. What does that mean? Elementary? High School? College? I don’t want to know. I scored… a 3.

I write from the Keep It Simple Stupid school. Of course my blog writing is not like my real writing. I write in phrases and thought patterns on my blog. I want it to sound like you’re having a conversation with me. When I seriously write, I obey all the punctuation rules I throw away when blogging. I am capable of writing with proper rules of punctuation; I just choose not to. I also don’t use an extensive vocabulary when I blog, out of habit. Even when I write in my profession, there is a certain level of education I cannot write above. So through force of habit, I have kept it simple and actually, it is cathartic to just put words to ‘paper’. Typically what you read here is first draft. I do a core dump out of my brain onto my computer with very little editing.

That said, I decided to go to a few blogs that are either political/technology blogs or blogs that’s topics lean mostly militarily to see what their scores were. My thoughts were, actually, that the military blogs could go either way. They could either score really high for their use of their jargon, I was unsure how the site would handle it, or they would score very average. In the military, writing is kept at a certain level also. Keep it simple. Everyone needs to be able to understand what you’ve written, from the E-1 with the GED to the O-7 with an advanced degree in Operations Analysis.

The mil bloggers scored about what I scored, a bit higher. That made me feel better as I have a lot of respect for the mil bloggers I read. They’re smart folks.

Politics and technology 10.14 and 66.39. Newsweek and Time. Yup, yup, that’s not me.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:31 PM | Comments (5)

May 01, 2005

Time To Quit Griping

I did it. I get tired of people complaining all the time, so I quit complaining and did it.

I joined Weight Watchers on-line today. It is time for me to lose that last 15-20 I’ve been griping about for the last year.

I am more grounded now and realize my dreams of being sylph-like are just not to be. My goal is just to be in better shape at 40 than I was at 30… which shouldn’t be that much of a stretch since I was 6 months post partum at 30.

We shall see…

Posted by Boudicca at 10:23 PM | Comments (15)

Random Thoughts on Blogging

I haven't been googled for anything really weird in a long time. That's a good thing... I think. My #1 google hit is still for Boudicca. Duh.

Today, other than Boudicca, I got googled for 'soapbox polishing axles'. Number 3, Thank.You.Very.Much. Eat your heart out men.

I'm having trouble with The Ecosystem. I'm bummin' I have to e-mail The Bear to fix it. I've done everything I've been told to do, but it doesn't matter, my old site didn't get transferred. Obviously I botched something up. Now I have to e-mail him, and he just got married, and is back from his honeymoon, and he does this stuff for free... and I'm feelin' kinda bad about it.

Which brings me to... All y'all that are linked to the ecosystem, I hope y'all have The Bear linked also. I mean, please, the guy deserves to have as many damn links on his system as we can give him. He deserves to be way up on the tippy top, even if he is #6 already. So... if you're part of the ecosystem, that NZ Bear does for FREE, then throw him on the linky section of your blogroll.

He deserves to be there.

I've been blogging 11 months now. Holy crap. Who woulda thunk the crazy lady had that much stuff to say... Geez.

Update: My old blogger site just got 'dogpiled' for 'what is the meaning of putting wind chimes near a gravesite'. Impressive. Too bad I didn't know the answer for the inquirer.

Posted by Boudicca at 09:33 PM | Comments (4)

Ehhh. Parts of it are Right

It's made it's rounds so hat tip to everyone where I've seen it.

Of course, all of this is coincidental as I had to check it with the 8th day of every month... and I found it to be the same. If it REALLY wanted to show it had some sooth saying skills, at the bottom of mine it would have read, "And you will wake up on this particular birthday, feeling quite chipper and optimistic that the big 4-0 is really really NOT going to bother you... after all... better 40 and alive than 40 and... not alive..."

Anyway, I had to laugh.

Yes, I'm all about the plans. I always have to have a plan. But I'm a detail kinda gal.

I should NOT own my own business, as it would make me miserable, but yes, I am a bit of a control freak.

I'm not idealistic, but rather realistic, however, I seem to think I am never too busy to say no to a worthwhile cause. I'm working on that too.

I am a good judge of values. I question the Executive skills. My experience with Executives has not been positive, so I'll pass on that. Thank.you.very.much.

Yes, I am reliable when it comes to money. Good thing since I'm the school treasurer. By the way, that gig is up in 13 months, but whose counting?

Material success is not a goal of mine. I just want to die without regret. Very simple.



Your Birthdate: September 8
Born on the 8th day of the month, you have a special gift for business, as you can conceive and plan on a grand scale.

You have good executive skills and you're a good judge of values.

You should try to own your own business, because you have such a strong desire to be in control.

You are generally reliable when it comes to handling money; you can be trusted in this regard.

Idealistic by nature, you are never too busy to spend some time on worthwhile causes, especially if managerial support are needed.

There is much potential for material success associated with this number.

What Does Your Birth Date Mean?
Posted by Boudicca at 06:05 PM | Comments (3)

The Most Obscene Thing on a Plate

When Mom and The Great Omnipotent One were in town, TGOO and I spent a day together. I don’t think we’d really done that since the last time we went searching for dead relatives in Troy, Alabama. After we went shooting, to all the local hardware stores, and bought Son#2 his Celtic Cross for his 1st Holy Communion gift, we went to lunch at this great diner I had heard about. If y’all are ever in North Palm Beach, it’s called ‘The Hobo’s Kitchen’ and is located near US1 on Northlake.

Anyway, I was craving a chili dog and out one came that was big. Really big. Big in length and width. There it laid, on my plate. I stared at it and I heard TGOO say as he too was staring at my big hot dog, “That’s the most obscene thing I’ve ever seen on a plate.”

I could only eat half. It was a big hot dog.

So as I was over at blog sistah Sally’s of Whimsy Capricious, I saw THIS and thought, “That’s the most obscene thing I’ve ever seen on a plate.” Heh.

Posted by Boudicca at 05:52 PM | Comments (5)

Karnival of the Kids: Pungent Piggies

I'm enjoying this Karnival of the Kids. I've been going through my old blogger material from my old site, my early stuff, finding stories about my boys I had forgotten about. Many of you are new readers. My one year blogiversary is coming up, but I've only been at THIS site for a few months. I was on blogger for 9 months.

So in perusing through my old posts, I found THIS post which is this week's entry to the Karnival of the Kids.

Blog Sistah Sally of Whimsy Capricious is this week's hostess and will be posting the Karnival tomorrow.

Posted by Boudicca at 02:56 PM | Comments (1)