Thursday, November 21, 2013

Milkshake Hugs

I used to cut up his food in very small pieces. 

I kept him in his stroller for years, seat-belted in, so he wouldn't wander away from me.

Don't let him near the dock of the bay!  He might fall straight to the bottom and drown!!

He was 10 years old before he was allowed to ride his bike in the street.

He had to be 12 years old and 80 lbs before he could ride in the front seat of my car.

The control freak momma in me was able to do all these things to keep my first born safe. 

Tonight, after basketball tryouts, Billy got in the car and told me he didn't make the team.  Tears welled up in his eyes.  Then tears welled up in my eyes.  I asked a couple of questions and then the rest of the ride was quiet, except for our sniffling.

I couldn't protect him from the disappointment.  It felt terrible.

And so it begins.  The journey to adulthood.  Being there but letting go.  Learning when to speak and when to stay quiet.  Knowing when to offer a hug and when to back off. 

Billy has never been one for showing affection.  Tonight was no different.  All I wanted to do was grab him and hug him.  He definitely did not want that.

So I made him a milkshake instead.

Whatever it takes to let him know I love him. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Lesson From A Cardinal

We have a cardinal who sits perched on a bush outside our living room window.  He has this habit of flying into the window over and over again.  I wondered what makes him do this and after a quick Google search I found the answer.  He thinks his reflection is another bird and he attacks.

You would think after a few times he would realize he's not getting anywhere.  I have gotten so annoyed by him and his constant banging on the window that I have muttered, "Dumb bird," under my breath more than a time or two.

As I was about to begin another week with a very bad case of the blahs, I realized that I too repeat bad behavior and get absolutely nowhere.  Whether it's going to bed too late, not exercising,  not praying, not planning, whatever.  My mood has sunken pretty low. 

Monday seems like the perfect day to make a change.  I made a list of what I needed to accomplish today.   It feels so good to cross off the things I've done so far.  Midday, after Matt left for kindergarten, I went for a run.  It was short and slow, but it felt good. I haven't done this in quite some time. Somehow it made the rest of the list (and day) look a lot less daunting.

It can be so hard to make that jump into doing what we know is good for us.  It is really easy to fall behind and be lazy---especially for someone like me who has time that can easily be wasted.  But wasting time can be a mental killer for me and it is high time I do something about it.

Keep me accountable, okay?  

See All Window Strike Solutions
First, you need to know why they do this.
Cardinals and Robins are very territorial birds. When birds see another of the same species in its breeding or feeding territory, it instinctively attacks the other bird.
- See more at:

See All Window Strike Solutions
First, you need to know why they do this.
Cardinals and Robins are very territorial birds. When birds see another of the same species in its breeding or feeding territory, it instinctively attacks the other bird.
- See more at:

See All Window Strike Solutions
First, you need to know why they do this.
Cardinals and Robins are very territorial birds. When birds see another of the same species in its breeding or feeding territory, it instinctively attacks the other bird.
- See more at:

Friday, November 15, 2013

Scenes From A Birthday

It's official.  I'm 43.

Tommy had the idea to make me a cake, so the boys took care of making it.  Mary Kate was in charge of decorating it, and Ann supervised.

I knew having them make dinner was asking too much, so I decided to go with a favorite meal my mom used to make for me when I was growing up.  Chunky Beef soup over rice.

The kids had hot dogs while I enjoyed my "memory."

They made me cards and Ann even wrote me a book.

Her book was titled, "I Will Always Love You."  Awesome, right?  Then I read the story.  It was a story about a girl who got in trouble by her mom, had her feelings hurt so badly that she wouldn't talk to her mom for days.  The mom realized she was mean and apologized but the girl did not accept the apology.  A few days later the girl realized she should accept the apology and they hugged and made up.  The end.

Can you say 1-800-Therapy?

Maybe a little ditty will make us feel better.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

On The Eve Of 43

Everything I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.
                                     -Abraham Lincoln

I miss my mom every day, but mostly on my own birthday.   She was the first person to go to when the best things happened, when the worst things happened, or just when I needed to know I was loved.

She was everything a mom should be, and I am forever grateful she was mine.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Weekend Highlights

Bill and I went to our 25th high school reunion on Saturday night.  It was fun.

2/3 of the Sexy Six....we missed you Rose and Trish :(

Our grade school group photo

Matt Phelan, Mary Alice, Marianne, Peggy, me, and Ted
See that guy on the left up there?  He's kind of famous.  Click on his name to find out more.

Since we had gone to the Saturday night mass, on Sunday we rested.  Some of us may or may not have stayed in our pajamas all day.

On Monday, our elementary school had their annual Veteran's Day assembly.  Tommy and Ann were on stage at one point saying,  "Our dad, William S., Navy."  So sweet.

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.
  -Ronald Reagan

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Mall Trip

Home today with a sick kid-- Matthew.  I was hoping to get him in to see the pediatrician this morning so I could still send him to afternoon kindergarten, figuring she would tell me I was wrong and he's really not sick at all.  But alas, pediatrician only has afternoon hours on Thursdays.  So home we stay.  All day.

Great day for him to sit on the couch and veg while I get a lot of work done around here.  But what do I decide to do instead?  Blog for all you wonderful readers out there.  I know, I'm nice.

I went to the mall yesterday.
I went because Bill and I are going to our 25th high school reunion on Saturday night and I needed something to wear.  We went to neighboring boy/girl high schools and graduated the same year.  We didn't meet until 8 years after high school though.  Anyway, we'll be going together-obviously.

 I don't know what has happened, but I don't like going to the mall anymore.  In my youth, *ahem* I spent all of my free hours there.  Now, I just think I'm better off not going at all.  For one thing, I park far away from the door because I have "parking lot phobia." Also, I am not interested in looking at anything except pajamas because they have the cutest styles out there and to be honest, that's all I really want to be wearing.  Then came the paranoia. I was walking right behind a young guy with a black backpack, so I kept searching for places to hide should he decide to, well, you know.

My feet started hurting before I made it to the second store, which now feels like a 2 mile walk before I get to the other end of the darn mall.  You know I only hit the department stores because I'm intimidated by stores like Express or Charlotte Russe.  I keep thinking when I walk in an alarm will sound and someone will come up to me and say, "Excuse me ma'am.  This store is for young people."  I tell myself, however, that since Christmas is coming I could use the excuse that I'm shopping for someone in the younger generation.

So, I did go into those trendy stores, avoiding all sales people but at the same time desperately wanting their help.  I had it all figured out what I would say if one approached me.

"Hi, yes.  I'm going to my 25th high school reunion on Saturday and I don't know what to wear.  I'm not really sure what I'm looking for exactly, but I do know that I want long sleeves to cover my arms.  Oh, and nothing too tight since I've raided the five Halloween bags in my house over the past week.  Could you also help me find something that makes me stand out, but also makes it look that my outfit just came naturally to me and that I didn't spend countless hours debating on what to wear?  Pants would be better too, because if I wear a skirt I'll want to wear heels and I don't walk well in heels and then I'll just look awkward all night.  And one more layers."

Well, that conversation only took place in my head.  I did manage to find a few cute outfits on mannequins that I liked, but then couldn't find the pieces on the clothes racks, got frustrated and left the store only to head to the next one and start all over again.

What I ended up buying was an overpriced blouse as flimsy as a piece of tissue paper.  I'll wear that along with a pair of black pants and we'll call it a day.

I pulled out our yearbooks last night.  I'm mostly looking forward to seeing my grade school classmates, including three of the Sexy Six.  A date night with Bill is always fun.  The open bar won't hurt.

Future Lovebirds