Friday, October 31

If my husband..........

actually bought two costumes for Halloween this year,

it is bound to be an interesting day.
and night, for that matter.
happy halloween, everybody.

Thursday, October 30

The Day Has Arrived.......

"Santa Claus isn't really real, is he Mom? It's really you, I know it!"
says Connor.
As Hannah lifted her eyes to see what my reaction was,
I smirked and changed the subject.
So that makes things a bit easier now.
Maybe the kids started thinking when

we didn't make a fuss about putting the lost tooth under the pillow
and no money was left.
Or when we forgot to leave carrots
out on a plate at Easter time.
Oh well.

Wednesday, October 29

A Love Story

I have been inspired by so many blogs,
that take time from bragging about their kids to actually tell a story.
And I think it is time for me. This story is the story of how Bill and I fell in love.
It began all those years ago.
We were, let's say it all together.........
It brings tears to my eyes,
recalling a love that would only grow
stronger and better, as the years progressed.
It took a little digging, but I found our yearbook pictures.

It didn't stop there.
We attended the same college.
I stumbled upon some photos from a dance we attended,
I am laughing just thinking about it -

OK - I just can't write another word. I am laughing so hard
I may have peed myself.

This is obviously all a bunch of crap.
BSU ???
(bullsh*t university)

I spent way too much time that I really can't spare
this afternoon, playing on
and had a fricken blast!!!!

Tuesday, October 28

My Mother-In-Law

Today is my mother-in-laws birthday and I wanted to have a post just for her.
Happy Day today, Mom. We love you.
We miss you. We can't wait to see you for Christmas.

I am lucky enough to say that I actually
love my mother-in-law. We do not happen to fall into
the stereo-typical daughter-in-law vs. mother-in-law category, thank goodness.
I sometimes wish my mother was still alive, so Bill
could be as fortunate as me, to have such a good and kind
I have been able to see my mother-in-law in many different stages,
and learn to appreciate her in each and every one.
My husbands mother, first and foremost.
My mother-in-law,
and lastly
my kids grandmother.
The latter is my favorite.
I love watching my kids with her.
I love how they can love her through the miles that separate us most of the year,
when they see her, it's like she has been here all along. They pick right up where
they left off. Funny how, even Garrin, being so young, just snuggles right up to her
when he sees her.
I love watching her watch my kids - making sure she takes in every second she is with them,
as to not miss a thing, and to fill her full-up until we see her again.
I love watching her marvel in everything they do - swimming, soccer, school..
being the proud grandmother, all the while.
I love that she has no problem fitting right into our busy, hectic, crazy life.

I love that she has much patience.

I love that she enjoys my kids, even when they are monsters.

I love that she always wants to visit.

I just love her.
Thanks for being a great mom, and grandmother!!
happy birthday

Monday, October 27

Look what pulled up in front of our house today.

A really big school bus,

with a really excited,

really cute kid on board.

I practically bit all of my nails off waiting for him to get home today. "First days" can be really hard sometimes.

I mean for me, you know....

Sunday, October 26

not that I am keeping track, but

it has been 27 hours and 23 minutes since I last got a text message from Hannah.

Good thing she comes home tonight.

Friday, October 24

It's hard going back to sleep when...

when your 11 year old, very excited, very self-confident middle school daughter boards a bus at 2:15am with 75 kids and chaperones, to spend an entire weekend exploring Catalina Island with the Catalina Island Marine Institute of Toyon Bay, and doesn't kiss you goodbye, or even look out the bus window as you are frantically jumping up and down like a freak in your pajamas, to get her attention to wave goodbye, because she is too busy talking with most everyone on the bus, because she is a goof ball and is friends with most of the them and is already having a good time even though it is the middle of the night and we both have gotten, at most, 2 1/2 hours of sleep, and she doesn't care that her mother is still jumping up and down and waving her hands left and right and remembers that she didn't label her name on the duffel bag or sleeping bag, and thinking that texting is actually a good thing because that is the only way she will be able to contact me and that I can't believe I actually forgot to bring the camera to take going-away pictures and as I am thinking that the silly parents taking pictures with their cell phones are nuts because how good could that picture actually come out but hey, I've got my cell and why not give it a shot and the bus is slowing starting to pull away...........
and there she goes.
For three days.
To this beautiful place....
So what's a parent to do at 3:15am now.
I logged on to Hannah's school's website and here is what I saw, much to my horror:
We are temporarily experiencing some technical difficulties with parentlink. As a result, grade and attendance information is not being displayed for any student. We are working closely with technical support at parentlink to rectify the situation. We expect to be able to display grades and attendance by the end of the day on Friday, October 24th. Thank you for your patience as we work through these difficulties.
Who the heck can sleep now!

Thursday, October 23


de·cid·u·ous [ di síjjoo əss ]

1. shedding leaves in fall: describes trees and bushes that shed their leaves in the fall
2. of deciduous trees: describes a forest or wood that is composed mostly of deciduous trees
3. shed after developmental stage: describes the teeth, antlers, or wings of animals and birds that are shed after a stage of development
4. shed easily or at intervals: describes the scales of fish that are shed easily or at intervals

I guess I kind of didn't really care about the word "deciduous" when I lived back on the east coast. Fall came and we took it for what it was. The leaves changed colors and fell from the trees. Wintertime, all was barren except the evergreens.

When we moved here and bought our first home, we actually had choices in landscaping since we were solely responsible for it's upkeep. And we ('cause we are lazy and/or don't have the time) have always chosen to have trees that are NOT deciduous.

Until now.

Now we didn't just plant one of these trees - we planted 4.
Purple Robe Locust.
It boasts a gorgeous grouping of flowers in the spring and early summer, of which we fell in love with.

Zoom in and look.


The beginning of the end of this tree.

Soon it will be dropping all its leaves.
But we are not fretting because we have this big boy....
to suck up anything and everything that falls on the ground from our 4 small trees
that are NOT deciduous.
Anyhoo - the leaves are very slowly starting to turn. Our "peak" isn't until Mid December usually. So we have a ways to go yet.
As I read my family's blogs and miss all the beauty that accompanies autumn, I looked around our yard and thought that this is just how it is here, and I love it for what it is. Different, is all.
Here are some pictures of the yard.
(side note: No pumpkins yet, for us. The temps are still in the mid 80's and I choose to wait, so I am not cleaning up a rotting mess. This weekend though - Walmart - $3.50 a piece. No fun associated with that task around here!!!)

What a great time of year!

Wednesday, October 22

you don't have to be a fan of swimming

to think this commercial is funny.
I actually like all of the Bill Kurtis/AT&T commercials.

Tuesday, October 21

oops, I forgot.

I was tagged by my sister-in-law.

like, I don't know,
last week or something....

I think it was last week....
maybe it was the week before...

(maybe sh#t like that is why I have a cold sore....)

Here goes.

Seven Things I Want To Do Before I Die

1. Own a home on the beach, preferably a Caribbean beach
2. Go to Italy
3. Vacation with just my husband
4. Get down to a "happy" weight and stay there for more than 5 seconds
5. Open another flower shop
6. Win the lottery, 'cause living here and throwing 20 bucks in a slot machine once every 2 or 3 months isn't doin' it for me.
7. Live long enough to see my children as adults and decide if I did a good job or not.

Seven Things I Can Do

1. Multi-Task exceptionally well.
2. Arrange a mean bouquet of flowers.....quickly and precisely.
3. Get up at 5am most mornings and go to the gym.
4. Drink coffee all stinking day, and night for that matter.
5. Raise 3 kids knowing if I had another I could do that too....
6. Find the sane way to keep it all together, during moments when I am thinking "what the hell am I doing????"
7. Be the biggest fan of my kids, all the while looking like a total ass, or at least a lunatic!

Seven Things I Can't Do

1. Swim as well as my kids. I just don't have the coordination.
2. Speak a foreign language, though as a kid, could understand most Sicilian that was spoken in our home, especially the curse words.
3. Keep my house clean for any extended amount of time.
4. Stop any of my OCD talents - yes, I am calling them talents.
5. Get my kids to school early. We are not ever late - but we are always on the run, for some reason...........
6. Keep my mouth shut, sometimes.
7. Love my husband and my kids anymore than I already do.

Seven Things That Attracted Me To My Hubby

1. His legs
2. His eyes
3. His lips
4. His dedication to bettering his life.
5. His dedication to making me his.....
6. His love for the beach.
7. His legs......did I say that already?

Seven Things I Say Most Often

1. You are sh*tt*ing/kidding me?
2. Whatever....
3. uhhhh...............NO.
4. get out?!/no way?!
5. Let's go, Hannah/Connor/Garrin. We are gonna be late?
6. Buh Bye
7. Thank You. No, really. One good thing actually comes out of my mouth.

Seven Celebrity Crushes

1. Seal, of course.
2. I can't think of anyone but Seal.
3. I like Seal.
4. Maybe Seal.
5. uhhhh.........Seal?
6. Seal.
7. Just Seal, I guess.........

So that's it.
More insight into ME.

I am not tagging.
Tag yourself, if you so choose to.

It was pretty fun, actually.

That's all folks. I'll be here all week.

Monday, October 20

Step away from the thermostat, Gini......

uhhhhh...........isn't it the 20th of October??
I am NOT complaining, mind you.
But when it is this warm and I have just finished a summer
of paying NV power $(I am not even going to write that figure down)
for the last 4 months,
I need to just tell myself it is OK that the temp in the house
was up to 85 today......
It is NEVER 85 in the house in the summertime..
Here is this weeks forecast:

Sunday, October 19

Recipe for a Cold Sore

This will be a non-pictorial account of the last week of my life.
If having no pictures is boring, skip today and wait for another post.
So where did we last leave off.
Breakfast with my sister at the Piggy Place....
Monday went to the doctor to find out I have tendinitis in my shoulder and I have to go to a specialist. No time. I will deal with that later.
oh and it's my kids birthday - we squeezed that in there somewhere.
Baked cute cupcakes and had a little celebration.
No pictures. I am a loser.
Tuesday Bill left for his third business trip this month - yup, that puts him at a trip each week this month, so far. Connor went with him to visit some friends we have in Colorado.
Attended quick meeting at Hannah's school pertaining to trip to Catalina Island that she is going on next week with 75 of her closest 6th grade friends and teachers.
Did I say no parents can go?
Wednesday comes and my sister goes...home that is. Dennis, Kimmy and Matthew packed up after a really great, really fun, really full (I'm not talkin' about our bellies...) really short visit.
As soon as they shut the door to the rental car, backed out of my driveway,
Then came Thursday and it was Garrin's first day of school. Let me 'splain...
Last week, I did not blog about taking Garrin for an extensive hearing test and then a meeting with the school district, where we learned that a. his hearing is perfectly fine and b. he has qualified to enter the school system here in an early childhood program for speech. Out the window goes the fabulous preschool Garrin had started and hello - Welcome to Connor's School 4 half day's a week!
Back to the first day of school.........Well it was Thursday and I pretty much had to be there all day to get things ready for THE FLIPPIN' HARVEST FESTIVAL THAT I GUESS I VOLUNTEERED TO CHAIR THIS YEAR WHAT.WAS.I.THINKING? And my little guy had a great, first day at "the big school." The teachers are in love with could they not be??
And Friday. Friday was D Day for me. I can't think of a better way to greet my friends, the teachers, the administration and all 800 families from our school, than with a cold sore the size of Mount Rushmore on my lip....
What did I expect?
All's well that ends well.
And there you have it. The stress and the nervousness - came to an end. And a great end indeed.
This weekend, we spent both days and nights in the peacefulness of our backyard. The weather was ideal. We grilled, we watched baseball (which I hate, but I wasn't complaining...) and football, we lit fires in our firepits, made s'mores, toasted marshmallows, watched our crazy kids night swim in our pool, played ball, read books and caught up on magazines, snuggled with blankets outdoors while watching the lights of the strip glowing and the planes coming in and the stars twinkling....
ahhh... I am feeling calm as I write this.........

Sunday, October 12


Holy Hotcakes!!!!
I can't even write about it.
All I can think of is:

click here to find out why...

Saturday, October 11

Today's Update

is being brought to you by
my sister
because ordinarily I would be reporting on the
successful, winning soccer game
Connor played today, that Kimmy and Dennis got to attend,


last night, Garrin


drove the porcelain bus/

did the technicolor yawn/

laughed at the ground/

talked to Ralph on the big white telephone/

called Captain Nemo

You get my point. We didn't make the soccer game.

Did you ever realize how many slang words/phrases
there are for vomiting?
Anyhoo - visit my sister's blog here.

Friday, October 10

Teacher's Pet of the Month

Oh, sorry.
I mean Student of the Month.
Hannah was chosen as Student of the Month for September
by her most favorite teacher in the whole wide world,
Mr. Newman who teaches English.
Now she does love English,
unlike both of her parents.
Funny story. When Hannah found out this week
that she had been chosen, she asked if Kimmy and Dennis
could take her to the special breakfast and award presentation
that they do for the students.
And I thought for a quick sec,
"Oh, that would be so nice. Hannah has missed them,
they could see her new school, and
they could be the proud aunt and uncle there
with her."
And then I thought,
Here is Hannah with Mr. Newman.

And with her award.
and with her very, very proud Dad.

Great job. Glad your teachers just love you.
Bring on the report card.

Thursday, October 9

Still October

Indoor swimming:
Garrin was absolutely thrilled to be back with Debbie.
Do you think a two year old knows how to show off?
Well he did. He was so excited to show Debbie, and Kimmy and Dennis,
how much he learned from Bill over the summer. He has certainly gained a lot
of confidence in the water.

Now for the outdoor swimming.
Our backyard wasn't done last time Kimmy and Dennis were out.
So they were anxious to go in the pool.
Now to be honest, when you live here and are used
to the water being 90, going in in mid-October is not
something I really want to do.
So I didn't.
Matthew enjoyed going in, only after the water warmed up a bit.

The only thing these desert-dwellers like to do in the pool
in October, is float a (fake) dead body in it
for our Halloween parties!!

Tuesday, October 7

The Visit

"When do they get here?"
"What time is their flight?"
"How long are they staying?"
"How many more days?"
"Can I go with you to the airport?"

My sister Kimmy, her husband Dennis and their baby Matthew
are coming for a visit.

They haven't been out here in a couple of years.
I am excited to finally meet my nephew,
and they are excited to see how big my kids have gotten.
(and then they will call their pediatrician for the magic pill
that keeps babies, babies forever.....)
Found these old pictures of a visit they made out here a while back.

No, that isn't Garrin.....

Wow, how young Dennis Hannah looks!!!

See you tonight guys!

I just needed to MELLOW OUT, man.

I am going to try to describe this the best way possible.
For me, it was a very weird experience.

I had an MRI done on my right shoulder.
I've never had an MRI, but I have heard a lot of
people talk about them. Especially the fact
that they feel claustrophobic. I remember vividly, my uncle
telling me of his experience, and just listening to him
tell me about it, freaked me out. Freaked out
for his sake.

I do not consider myself claustrophobic.
Not in the least bit.

So I lay down on this table with my head near "that hole".
The guy takes like 15 minutes adjusting my shoulder, my
arm, my butt, my head, until I was just right.

Just before I started moving toward "the hole",
he put on me, this gigantic set of fuzzy headphones.
OK - Music
I'm good with that.
A little Aerosmith playing - "Janie's Got A Gun"
I'm good with that too.

Then I start moving into "the damn hole".


bad move

So I quickly shut them because I really didn't like seeing
how "in the hole" I was going......
After I closed my eyes, all I could see (under my eyelids)
were these psychedelic waves of sort.

Kinda weird.
Kinda screw-y.
Kinda made me sick to my stomach.

I took a couple of very deep breaths,
and started getting into the music.
I kept imagining myself on the Rock-N-Roller Coaster
at Disney World, in which they play
Aerosmith songs while you are screaming and
having fun.

That's all it took.
For about 40 minutes.

Thank God it's over.

Monday, October 6

What the heck is going on with the weather?

OK - so the temps dropped (plummeted, more like it)
about 20 degrees in a couple of days.

Sunday was only in the upper 70's by the afternoon.
What's a family to do that lives in the desert heat?

Go to the park.

So yes folks.
We do have parks.
We do have full grown trees.
We do have grass that is green.

Do I have any of these things in my yard?
But that's ok. That's what the park is for.

Here are the kids, having a good ol' time.

OK - she learned "the arms" thing from me. Probably not the BEST thing
I've taught her. I do "the arms" a LOT!

Back to the fun.
A little love after a boo boo.

Oh my. They actually DO get along on occasion.

Maybe they are a little lightheaded from the smell
of freshly cut grass.

Missed you Bill. Hope Ohio is brrrrrr...ight and clear.

Fun day!