Saturday, September 30, 2006

Random Thoughts from the Kansas Speedway

Lady in front of us today: I see you have one of those mini fans with you. You would not need that if you would have left the black long sleeve shirt at home, along with the black cowboy hat, black jeans and black cowboy boots. This isn’t a Johnny Cash concert.

Man Behind Us: Have you picked up on my nasty looks today? Don’t worry, I’ll be back tomorrow with them. See, I don’t appreciate being an ashtray. Apparently you thought it was fine to smoke one after another, dumping your ashes all over us.

Drunk Man a Few Rows Down: Must you turn around and be obnoxious at each yellow flag? I’m never that obnoxious when I’m drunk.

To the guys at the DeWalt booth – Could you not tell that my son had been in line for a LONG time to participate in the drilling challenge? What the hell made you think you could just walk up to the front of the line in front of all those kids?

To the lady at the Jeff Gordon merchandise trailer: LADY – You drove me INSANE! Couldn’t you see the ginormous line behind you? For the love of god, this is not a shopping mall. When it’s your turn, here is an example of what you say: “I need item 22 in a large.” Then you give them money and get the hell out of the way. You should not be allowed to ask them to pull out every single shirt they have and examine it thoroughly.

To the guy at the Jimmie Johnson trailer: You just asked which of their shirts came in long sleeves. Can’t you freakin see all the shirts hanging up? If it has long sleeves, Einstein, then it comes in long sleeves.

To Max: Thanks for letting Flat Stanley come with us. He had a great time!

Friday, September 29, 2006

Please Welcome...

Momof4greatkids! She's new to the blogging community, so please stop over and tell her hello!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

WFMW: Packing Clothes for Kids (Re-Post)

Whenever I pack for a trip, I make sure to pack the kids’ things as simply as possible. So I lay out outfits they will need for each day, complete with socks, underwear, etc. For each day, I lies the clothes out (I may fold the shorts and shirts in half so that it makes a skinny stack), stack them up, and then roll them up. So each day we’re on vacation, the kids just have to grab a roll out of the suitcase and they have everything they need to get dressed for the day!

This works awesome for several reasons:

  • Helps me make sure I pack enough socks and underwear for them
  • Keeps the clothes from getting too wrinkled in the suitcase
  • Saves space in the suitcase
  • Makes them self-sufficient while we're on vacation. All their clothes are in one spot - we're not searching for this shirt or those shorts.

I learned this from my mother. It worked for her, and it definitely works for me! Check out more tips at Rocks in my Dryer.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

NASCAR Weekend

Dear Friends of Green 3,

We are going on our annual NASCAR trip this weekend. We are terribly hurt that you think NASCAR is a redneck sport. If you would just attend one race with us, you would get to experience NASCAR as we see it – and you would love it.

NASCAR fans are high class. Quite a few people attend the races in motor homes.

You get to meet up with other NASCAR friends who are fans. You can tailgate, share a few drinks.

When you get to the stands, you are surrounded by others who are just as enthusiastic about NASCAR.

This year are taking one of our sons with us. He’s very excited to go and enjoys the excitement of being part of the crowd.

Guess we will have to have fun without you.

Green3, DH, and 3

Monday, September 25, 2006

A Story of Abuse and Neglect

A series in The Des Moines Register this week has me intrigued. The story is of a teenager, Tracey Dyess, who was sexually abused since the age of 4 by several different men. Awhile back she poured gasoline throughout the house and started it on fire, killing her sister and brother. The intended victim, her step-father, escaped. You can read the series here.

I have no first hand knowledge of sexual abuse. I don’t believe I even know anyone who has been a victim. I always thought it was bad, gross, and mean. But it’s oh so much worse than that. This story has opened my eyes about how deep the scars are, how sexual abuse can ruin a person until they are simple a shell of a human being. In many situations, the abuse is covered up and ignored – which only causes it to be passed on from generation to generation. Such is the case with Tracey.

I’ve thought a lot about Tracey’s mother. I should rephrase that – she was no kind of mother. She had been abused as a child. She was married three times, never bothering to divorce any of them. She met Tracey’s father while she was hitchhiking – he happened to be the trucker who picked her up. When Tracey and her twin sister were born, the mother said she didn’t “connect” with them because they were premature and purple. She moved her kids countless times, and the kids did not have regular education because of it. She was a prostitute, having her “clients” in a bed right next to Tracey’s bed when Tracey was just a toddler. She wasn’t just a bad mother – she was simply not a mother.

When Tracey turned 4, the abuse started. It continued until the day she burned the house down. She said she enjoys prison because for the first time in her life, she feels safe.

My question is this: as a society, what in the world do we do with this situation? I don’t have the answers. Is Tracey to blame for starting the fire which killed her two siblings? In the article, she said she never intended to kill anyone, even her step-father. She just simply wanted everything to STOP. Tracey has been victimized by everyone that she SHOULD have been able to trust – her mother, her step-fathers, her step-grandfather. She never knew a normal life. And now she is having to pay the price. Unfortunately her siblings paid the ultimate price.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Start Spreadin' The News

We’re leaving in November.
We’re going to be a part of it – New York New York!

The Las Vegas version that is.

We have our plane tickets and room reservations! We’ve started to map out our itinerary, which will include the following:

• ESPN Zone
• Madame T’s Wax Museum
• M & M World
• And looking at lots and lots of lights

And staying at New York New York!

Friday, September 22, 2006


Below are a few inventions that I'm thankful for:

How AWESOME is that they they sell whole grain bread in “white bread” form? My kids are totally fooled. And it help Green’s chronic constipation problem, so we’re never switching back. LOVE it. When it’s on sale, I load up my freezer full of this stuff. (ooohhh man….I sense a WFMW topic here!)

Wireless Internet – if you don’t have it, you don’t know what you are missing out on.

Laptops – Of course, the above isn’t necessary if you don’t have one of these. Unfortunately I have a IE bugger on there right now. IE opens, then shuts down. I’ve tried everything. Next step is to beg by brother for suggestions on how to fix.

These handy binder/clip things. Nothin’ gets loose from them. – it’s one of my guilty pleasures

Book lights.

Grape Propel (sorry SoBe, this is my newest addiction)

Sweatshirts and sweatpants – I change into these the INSTANT I get home from work.

The buttons on the back of my steering wheel that control my radio. It’s just too dang far to reach over there and fiddle with the buttons.

And here a few things I wish someone would invent:

Locators for remote controls. Why doesn’t my big-ass televsion have a button that I can press that can locate the remote? My crappy phone can do it, so my expensive tv should do it.

Cat litter that does not get everywhere. I’ve bought every single brand out there – they all suck.

Book lights that don’t need any sort of battery or electricity, but are still super bright. My batteries are always dead. I also need some kind of locator on them because I’ve purchased at least 7 in the past year and am down to 2.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

WFMW: Extra Money

To save up a little extra money, we have a bank money bag on our kitchen counter. Any extra money goes into this bag, and we take it to the bank every once in awhile and deposit the money into a separate account. Our “extra” money includes:

• Money DH receives for refereeing and umpiring
• Pocket change
• Laundry change
• If people owe me money and pay me back
• Insurance reimbursements
• Basically anytime I’m at home and have extra money on hand

This money adds up faster than you think. We use the money in this extra bank account for special things, such as taking the kids for an overnighter at a hotel, buying our NASCAR tickets. We also use it for dull things like property taxes.

For tons of handy tips, check out Shannon's blog!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Cool Name Thingy

Check this out. It tells you when a name was most popular. I searched my name and it spiked up the exactly on the year I was born. trendy.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Free Blog Design Contest

If you are looking for customized look to your blog, as I am, head on over to She is having a contest to win a free blog design!

Take a look through the portfolio. The work in there is awesome.

How To Find Me

Apparently you can find my blog by searching on this: "straight guys kissing"

I had no idea...

Sunday, September 17, 2006

I Believe

I believe that true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance. Same goes for true love.

I believe that you can do something in an instant that will give you a heartache for life.

I believe that it's taking me a long time to become the person I want to be.

I believe that you should always leave loved ones with loving words. It may be the last time you see them.

I believe that you can keep going, long after you can't.

I believe that we are responsible for what we do, no matter how we feel.

I believe that either you control your attitude or it controls you.

I believe that heroes are the people who do what has to be done when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences.

I believe that money is a lousy way of keeping score.

I believe that sometimes when I'm angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn't give me the right to be cruel.

I believe that maturity has more to do with what types of experiences you've had and what you've learned from them and less to do with how many birthdays you've celebrated.

I believe that it isn't always enough to be forgiven by others. Sometimes you have to learn to forgive yourself.

I believe that our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but we are responsible for who we become.

I believe that you shouldn't be so eager to find out a secret. It could change your life forever.

I believe that two people can look at the exact same thing and see something totally different.

I believe that your life can be changed in a matter of hours by people who don't even know you.

I believe that even when you think you have no more to give, when a friend cries out to you you will find the strength to help.

I believe that credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.

Edited, Author Unknown

Friday, September 15, 2006

Green3's Obzervashuns on Runin for Skool Bored

Be very very careful when typing the word “public”. It’s very close to the word “pubic”.

Doors work awesome for signs. You could come up with cool slogans like “Opening the door to education” or “Doorway to Excellence” or “Please pretend that this is not a door. It’s the only wood I could find.”

It’s hard to find good help for painting the doors signs. First of all, they complain a lot. Second, they demand $1.00 per side, but you can easily negotiate down to $1.00 per door.

Take a lot of pictures of your door painters. It really pisses them off.

At some point you realize that “Damn, my campaign is based on doors?” You’ll then decide to fork over the $130 for professional signs.

Holding public office is not the key to becoming a millionaire. Maybe if it was "pubic" office, I might be able to get paid a bit more.

Wait, I ran for school board? I thought you said, “Will you run for cool Ford?” I’m no runner, but I’d do about anything for a free new car. Even if it is a Ford.

Candidates put themselves out there in front of the public to be judged and questioned. And questioned you will be:
Q: What are your thoughts on schools?
A: I like ‘em.

Q: Do you think the community will be willing to elect two women to the school board?
A: Roundhouse kick to the shin. No verbal response given.

Q: Boxers or briefs?
A: Thongs, thank you.

Dirty Girl

Yesterday I did not shower.

And I ventured down to the soccer fields.

Where there was a chance I could be seen by everyone who is anyone.

Luckily, the soccer games started later than the time I was there.


Tuesday, September 12, 2006

And your new school board member is.....


Illness Detector

As you can tell, I'm a wonderful artist. No, I am not for hire.

By time I got Green to the doctor at 3:15, his temp was 102.5 -- and yes, he has strep. Feel free to nominate me for Mother of the Year.

We’ve been having trouble getting Green (fka J) to go to school. School takes too long, people are bothering him, or whatnot. I really think he loves school, and from what I’ve heard he’s pretty popular with the other first graders. I don’t get it.

This morning started off with his usual rundown of the things that may be wrong with him and could possibly keep him home from school. He refused to get dressed, so I drove 3 to school and came back to deal with him. Lots of yelling on my part, whining on his part. He has a soccer game tonight so I even threw that out there. “If you stay home sick, you can’t play in your game tonight.” No luck. So I gave in and thought, ok, he must be sick. Called the school, called my office, cancelled our election party for tonight, the whole works. After I changed back in to my “not going to work” clothes, I sit with 3 and apologize for being upset with him. We had the whole crying wolf lesson too, and I told him that if he didn’t try this every single day then I would know when he was really sick. So I got his bed all made up on the couch and settled in for a sick day.

As time passed, he started to play with Buster, talk a lot, watched Space Jam, and just seemed like his normal self. So I questioned him, “If you really are sick, Mommy will sit here all day with you until you get better. HOWEVER, if you are not sick and you are lying, SANTA will know and GOD will know!”

I went downstairs to do something and he suddenly comes down the stairs. “Mom, you won’t believe this! Remember how sick I was an hour ago? I’m totally FINE now! It’s that crazy? I can go to school! Hey, can I ride my bike?” I stare at him – furious because I’d been snowed by my first grader, embarrassed because I had allowed it to happen, etc. So I tell him to get dressed and NO YOU CANNOT RIDE YOUR BIKE. I get him to school and come back home – mad.

I have to vent, so I call my friend to let her know that the party tonight is back on and give her the scoop. I tell too many co-workers about Green’s trick. Too late to drive into the office, so I decide to work from home. Get settled in for a day of working, and am able to work about 45 minutes. Phone rings.

Umm, Green3? Green is here and he’s crying. He said his throat hurts really bad and he’s running a fever. Could you come get him? CRAP “Yes, I’ll be right there.”

So is he sick or is he not sick? He lying next to me now on the couch, sound asleep. And he’s ok with missing soccer, ok with canceling the party, ok with going to the dr later this afternoon. He’s definitely sick. I'm getting to work on my new invention as soon as he's feeling better.

**NOTE** Check back after 10:00 tonight for my school board election results!!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Toyena Corliss Skinner

Looking for Toyena Skinner. Last seen 1 WTC, 47th floor.

27 y/o, 5'5", 230lbs, African American Female.

The above comment was posted on a website where friends and families can post messages. Very few of us can imagine what 9/11 families went through those days and weeks, waiting for their loved ones to come home.

Toyena was born November 26, 1973. On this tragic day, she was 27 years old and a new mother. She was employed by First Union Securities/Wachovia. A gut wrenching part of this tragedy – her last day at her job was to be Friday, September 14, 2001. She planned to start a new life as a mommy.

According to comments left online by your sister, your son has grown up to be a brilliant child. He is also very handsome, as he resembles his mother.

I ask all of my readers to say a prayer for Toyena, her family, and mostly her son.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Kids, We're Goin' to Vegas!


Our kids are infatuated with cities, bright lights, and so on. We just don't have that kind of thing here in the boonies. They've always wanted to go to Las Vegas, so I've been researching "kids and vegas" on the web. Seems there are plenty of things to keep them happy for a few days out there. DH and I are not gamblers by any stretch of the imagination, so I'm not at all concerned about the kids not being able to enter casino areas. Has anyone else taken their kids to Vegas and can offer some advice on where to stay and what to do? I'm thinking of staying at New York New York right now. C'mon bloggers, help me out there!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

WFMW: Family Baseball (or Softball)

There are 4 of us in our family, so we don’t have quite enough players to play a full-fledge baseball game. We’ve come up with a very easy way to play baseball and make it fair for the kids. Here are The Green 3 baseball rules! (or softball, of course)

  • The kids are always up to bat and the parents are always in the outfield.
  • Each time they score a run, they get a point. Each time we get them out, we get a point.
  • If one of them is on first base and then gets hit to second base, which means they are both on base now, the person on second base gives up his position and goes up to bat. They cannot count that as a “ghost runner”.
  • No stealing.
  • Once the pitcher has the ball, they cannot advance to another base.

We keep track of our "record" all summer long an crown a champion team at the end of the season. DH and I really do try our hardest but we rarely win.

Play Ball!!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Makin' Cheesecakes

I’ve been ignoring my blog for awhile, but I really have had better things to do! The past few nights I’ve been busy putting together my election “platform” so to speak, for my run for the school board. I’ll comment more on my campaign after September 12. PLEASE REMEMBER TO VOTE! YOUR VOICE MATTERS!

Ok, I’m kind of tired of school board talk so let’s move on.

We were kid-less for a night, so we footed it to the big city. Ok, maybe Des Moines isn’t your idea of a big city, bit it’s definitely bigger than where I live. We have a new fancy mall there that is supposed to make us feel like we’re in Chicago or something. Doesn’t really do that for me, but I like it and I go there every time I’m in Des Moines. Along with the fancy new mall with the chic stores, it also has hip eateries such as P.F. Chang, Joe’s Crab Shack and The Cheesecake Factory. Love The Cheesecake Factory.

So we decide to hit The Factory at around 5:00 thinking the line may not be so long. We were told our wait would only be 15-30 minutes. Not bad. Heck, I didn’t have any kids along so what was the hurry? Besides, I’m always good for a few minutes of people watching. So we find a seat and start our wait.

We see the typical people: people with baby strollers trying desperately to squeeze them through the shoulder-to-shoulder crowd. Even saw a double stroller shoving people aside. What IS it with these parents?? (see, I could say that because there was no way to prove to that crowd that I was a parent or that I ever did that when I was in stroller mode.) Also saw the guy in the brown shorts with the brown socks and sandals.

Saw the multi-generational family: “Mom, come sit down. You shouldn’t be standing. Zach, quit running around and sit by your grandmother. No, really Mom, would you please sit down? Dad, you just hit that guy with your walker. Damn, I think the baby’s diaper needs changed. Did we bring the baby food? Yes, Dad, they probably serve two percent milk here.” DH and I sat in our seats loving every minute of it. I’m even thinking, “I hope our buzzer doesn’t go off anytime soon because this is comical!” Little did I know the comedy hadn’t even begun yet.

As you know by now, there was a long wait. The lobby was PACKED. Strollers, walkers old people, young people everywhere. I see a man in a polyester shirt and a young teen step up to the main door. The man taps another man on the shoulder. Tap tap tap

Polyester Man: “Is this the line?”
Non-Polyester Man: “You have to go up there to put your name in.”
PM: “How much does it cost?”
NPM: “It depends on what you order.”
PM: “Nah, I really just want to watch.”
NPM: “Watch what? What the hell are you talking about?”
PM: “This here's the Cheesecake Factory, ain't it? Ain't this where they make them cheesecakes?
NPM: “Dude, this is a restaurant.”
PM: “Oh, I thought this is where they made them cheesecakes and this line was to watch them.”

Polyester Man and Son turned to each other, shrugged their shoulders, and walked away. If my buzzer hadn’t gone off just at that moment, I may have stood up and followed them around the mall all night to see what else they were looking for. I would have loved to have seen them stop in for a healthy snack at the Banana Republic.