Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I'd like to welcome -

Mike to the blogging world! In his debut performance he blows our socks off!

Night after night I have sat on my couch across from him in the living room wondering what in the world he could be doing on his blackberry / computer / iPhone that steals so much of his attention for hours on end. 

Then the other night he came to show me.  "I want to see that again!" I said laughing.  He definitely captured the insanity that is the two little boys that live on OK drive.

Without further ado...the premiere of Super Kids the movie.  Sure to be a blockbuster.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Interviewing Replacements

This morning Cavin became upset with me because I could not (poof!) create a pink hat out of thin air for him to wear today.  So he told me ever so directly and demanding that he wanted a new mommy.  At first I chucked.  We are used to Cavin's expression of how he's mad at us..."I'm going to throw you in the garbage!" or our current favorite - "I'm going to put you in traffic!"

"Really?" I said.  "And why is that?"

"Because I don't like you." he replied.

The morning went on and when he didn't get his way or I said for the 45th time that he could not have a piece of chocolate he announced his decision to replace me.  I have to admit my feelings were a bit hurt but I brushed it off with the excuse that he's 3 and, well, there were times in my past when I told my mother that I hated her and she was ruining my life.  So this isn't entirely out of the realm of normal.

Once we were in the car he divulged his plan of obtaining his new mommy.  He told me that I was to never come back and just WHO would replace me.  I'm a better mommy than her! I thought defensively.  Then quickly shaking my head realizing that 1) No I'm not.  I maybe be a better mommy to Cavin but not a better mommy in general terms and 2) Who am I to assume that reason exists in this 3 year old little brain?  I mean isn't this the same kid who threw a 45 minute tantrum last week (we are talking screaming / kicking / hitting for so long he was turning purple and losing his breath) all because his granola bar was broken in half?  Okay I thought This is just a phase.

Except I admit I couldn't let it go.  Driving down Cowell Road on the way to preschool I couldn't help but think how could this child that my entire universe was wrapped around, that I have lost MANY hours of sleep over, and taken countless days away from my job to cuddle the fevers away, and that I check on every night before I go to bed - how could he just up and decide that the mommy position was fungible.

I am being sensitive.  I know this.

We arrive at preschool and as he took in the new surroundings - the teacher telling a kid to 'clean up', his best friend playing with one of the older kids, a group of girls reading books in the corner - he turned around, hugged my legs, looked down at his feet and whispered over and over "I don't want you to go.  I don't want you to leave preschool."

"I know honey.  Don't worry...I will see you tonight."

Thanks Janessa for the sweet photo.

One more day with job security.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

More Little Words

Last I checked I've been on health kick trying to lose the last 5 pounds from my pregnancy with Ellis.  I thought I was doing pretty well...that is, until my conversation with Cavin yesterday morning.  Now I'm questioning my efforts!

Cavin: "Mommy, let's do it again!"
Mommy: "Let's do what again honey?"
Cavin: "Your was big!  Let's paint Ellis' room.  Ellis will get in your tummy, we'll paint his room, and then he'll come out of your tummy again."
Mommy: "Uhhhmmm..."
Cavin: "Well, first I'll get in your tummy, we'll paint my room...then Ellis will get in your tummy and we'll paint his room!"
Mommy: "That's not quite how it works...and you two are a little too big for mommy's tummy right now."
Cavin: "I know!  We'll BOTH get in your tummy!!"

Cavin in my tummy
Ellis in my tummy

I don't think I could fit two of them at the same time.  One made me big enough!

And then today....

Cavin: "Mommy, are you married?"
Mommy: "Yes"
Cavin:  "Are you married to daddy?"
Mommy: "Yes"
Cavin: "Why are you married to daddy?"
Mommy: "Well, because I love him."
Cavin: "And because you are a woman?"
Mommy: "Sure. That too."

Well, that was a fun and unexpected way to show off some old pictures!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Little Words Wednesday

At the dinner table...

Daddy and Mommy: "In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy...."
Cavin: "NOOOOO!!!!!
Daddy and Mommy: "...Spirit.  Bless us oh Lord for..."
Mommy: "Why not Cavin?"
Cavin: "Because I don't want you to!!"
Daddy: "Well then, it looks like you are going to need to go to Church then..."
Cavin: "NOOOO!!!"
Daddy: "...because you're not praying."
Cavin: "I don't WANNA go to Church.  I WANNA pray!"
Daddy, Mommy, and Cavin: "In the name of the..."

In the morning as I'm walking out of my closet...

Cavin: "Mommy what are you wearing??"
Mommy: "What do you mean? I'm wearing my clothes for work."
Cavin: "No, WHAT is on your legs?"
Mommy: "They are called tights."
Cavin: "They are black.  Your legs are black.  I have a new mommy!!!!"
Mommy: "No you don't, I'm just wearing black tights and a skirt."

15 minutes later downstairs...

Cavin [Running between the kitchen and living room]: "I have a new mommy!!! I have a new mommy!!!!"

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


I have always loved the month of October.  When September closes down and we start to see the 29th and 30th on the calendar I get giddy with anticipation.  October is the gateway to the holiday season - pumpkins pop up everywhere, the weather begins to cool a bit (unless you live in the bay area), and people start talking about parties, time off, and seeing family.  I am reminded that my dad's favorite holiday is right around the corner - Halloween!  Growing up we used to eat candy corn for months straight under the guise that it was "cholesterol free" (we have a family history of super duper high cholesterol)...but really candy corn was just another way to celebrate the month.

October was also one of my favorite weather months in Texas.  The 100 degree and humidity is usually behind us and cooler breezes show up.  And now in California, October means the leaves are starting to change colors...something I've never seen until I moved here.

And now there's yet another reason why I like this month.  October was also the last month I had with my mom before she was admitted to the hospital in early November.  And we had fun.  Well she had a lot of fun and then flew to California and we had a blast.  Mom traveled to San Antonio, bounced around the city like it was her job, and tired herself out so much that she passed out in a chair in the hotel lobby, and was awoken by the hotel manager saying she needed to move (true story). She was supposed to drive home to Houston that day but called me laughing and retelling her story - I convinced her to stay another night.  Then she watched her favorite Elvis Tribute Artist, Cody Slaughter, who threw her a sweaty scarf from onstage and my mom squealed like a 15 year old girl at a Justin Bieber concert.  She spent some quality time with some of her best girlfriends, including Joyce Luza...who ultimately wrote her a letter (along with Barbara Glidewell) every other day while mom was in the hospital.  I'm so glad that in the month of October, mom was able to spend time with her friends.

Mom flew to California just before Halloween.  She was tired and frazzled because she was intent on helping her dear friend, Kathy Ellis, get her business website for Diva Doodles up and running.  She spent much of her time here in California on the phone acting as Kathy's business manager and 'putting others in their place' because they were behind deadlines to get the business online prior to the holiday season.  She essentially took over Kathy's business while her best friend fought her battle with cancer.  Because that's what mom did.  She took care of people and got shit done.

When Halloween rolled around I'll never forget the crate of costumes we spilled out all over the living room floor.  Mom and I dug deep into the crate pulling out Winnie the pooh costumes, graduation gowns, hats, wigs, and crazy pants trying to come up for something to wear to our party.  Mom found some sort of concoction between a black graduation gown, scarf from my closet, and black hat, called herself a witch, and then proceeded to eat and play with all of Cavin's and Ellis' friends.  She spent half the party trying to get Cavin's friend, Jenna, to kiss him!  And on Halloween she trotted Cavin all around the neighborhood like the proud nana that she was.

So I could choose to look upon October as the beginning of the end or I can focus on the fond memories that I have always had of that month and the fun that mom truly enjoyed before November 7th rolled around.  I choose the latter.  Because that is what mom would of wanted.  She and I friggin' LIVED the entire year for the holiday season so, at this moment, I choose to celebrate this month with open arms.  November may be another story....because I'm pretty livid with November right now.

It has been 9 months mom.  Raise your glasses to the good witch!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Little Words Wednesday

Cavin: "I want to go on a boat!"
Mommy: "Really? That sounds fun!  Uncle Tod used to have a boat.  Do you remember Uncle Tod?  He's a firefighter!"
Cavin: "Yeah.  Why is he a firefighter?"
Mommy: "Because he likes to help people and save them from fires.  And do you remember your Uncle Bryan?"
Cavin: "Yeah. He's a police officer!"
Mommy: "That's right!"
Cavin: "Why is he a police officer?"
Mommy: "He chose to be a police officer because he liked to help people too.  In fact he saved many lives."
Cavin: "And he drove a police car!!!  And the people would ride in it b/c he would help them.  And the ambulance would come and pick up the sick people and take them to the hospital. And then his car would say 'wooa!! wooa!! wooa!!' and it drives doooown the street."

Mommy: "What do you want to be for Halloween?"
Cavin: "Not a house.  I want to be a BAT!"
Mommy: "Okay....what should Ellis be?"
Cavin: "a ghost"
Mommy: "and daddy?"
Cavin: "A chicken.  And mommy will be a lion.  No....a tree!!"

Later that evening:
Mommy: "Daddy, Cavin said you are going to be a chicken for Halloween."
Daddy: "What!?  I don't want to be a chicken!!! What if I want to be something else?  Like a.....uhmm..."
Daddy: "Okay...."

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


Growing up I had this wonderful dog named Cookie.  She was a black and white shih-tzu so naturally the full name of Oreo Cookie Martin was deemed appropriate.  Cookie was awesome...but crazy.  She chewed the windows, ate her own poop, and frequently set off the house alarm by throwing her body up against the kitchen windows when a bird flew by.  However, she snuggled in bed with me every night, loved to swim, and was my best friend for many years!

I will never forget anytime we opened the front door we'd hear little doggy nails scraping on tile floors as Cookie ran to get outside.  Meanwhile it was a race for us to beat her and close the door before she had a chance to get away!  Because on those instances that she actually beat us out the door, well it was all over.  Cookie would take off!  All you would see was a little dog butt and paws pumping up and down as she'd run farther and farther away.  She was never really after anything in particular...she just loved to run - and FAST!  We never could catch her on foot....we always had to jump in the car and drive around the neighborhood yelling her name.  Such a nightmare.

You know how when someone passes on it is said that their spirit energies can be transferred to another?  I'm not sure if I entirely believe this but I'm beginning to think that if it is true...well then I know who has Cookie's spirit.

I'm telling you, we open the front door and the next thing we see is a baby butt and the bottom of his feet as he runs towards our neighbors house.  He'll run around the entire neighborhood if we'll let him (and sometimes we have).  So you know why we are sometimes walking around the 'hood in our socks.  And when you see this, feel free to rob our house...because in a rush to catch the kid, we've most likely left the door wide open.

I don't know what it is but this kid is obsessed with the outdoors.  And I'm beginning to think he's a marathon runner in the making.

Monday, August 27, 2012

10 Things

I've looked back on some of my recent blog posts and geez I've been a wet blanket lately.  And in reality, yes we've been really busy over here on OK drive; however, we've still managed to smile and laugh a lot.  So here's ten things that have made ME smile recently:

1.  Birthdays

2.  The Boys

3.  Monkeys

4.  Independence

5.  And the watchful eye...

 6. Baby Blues

7.  This look

8.  Alternative ways of parenting

9.  Picture perfect smiles

10.  Celebrating our 5 year wedding anniversary as a family with smores in our backyard

Until next time everyone!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A video for ya!

Well hello everyone!

Hopefully I'm back to my regular posting now after a brief hiatus.  So there's a lot that's happened over the last few months (Ellis learning to walk - he's now running and jumping, the boys' birthdays, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Cavin's 1st day of preschool...just to name a few).  Another things that's happened is one of my fellow blogger friends introduced me to this program called picture movie...and well, this is the result: 

Friday, August 3, 2012

Where am I?? I'm here I swear!

This has been one tough month.  I'm in my 'black hole' as mom used to call it.  Mom and I used to talk at least once a week...if not more.  Then all of a sudden if she heard nothing from me she'd leave me messages one after the other screaming for me to come out of my black hole.  It was our 'key word' we shared that meant "you are working too hard...I'm worried about you and call me the #!@$ back."

Well, I've been in my black hole this month. I cannot remember the last time I was this busy with my job, had this much pressure on me, and cannot seem to keep my head above water.  To say I'm overwhelmed would be grossly understated.  Between work, the kids, the responsibilities, oh yea, and did I mention that this is Mike's busy season at work too?  And the guilt!  My Lord...the guilt I feel for literally running into preschool to find that Cavin is yet again the last kid to be picked up, the guilt from missing deadlines, overlooking things, the forgetfulness...

I need a new black hole.  At least when I stopped hearing from mom it meant she was off following fake Elvis around or hiking up a mountain somewhere in Utah.  I want my mom's black hole.

Mom. It has been 7 months today.  It is selfish to say that I miss how much you worried about me and this black hole I find myself in from time to time.

I love you.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


How the hell are we at 6 months?  I guess time flies fast but it seems like just yesterday that I was telling mom in the hospital that Ellis was 'sorta kinda almost close to trying to crawl' and that I couldn't wait for her to see it.  And now he's walking, running, jumping, climbing, and talking.  So it happened.  6 months flew by, life continued, yet the memories of my mom remain unchanged.  Her courage, fight, patience, love, humor, faith, and love of matter how much time passes, the things she left on this Earth and in our lives and memories will always be there.  And I will never stop thinking about them.

Mom with her siblings, my grandmother, and grandaunt

I often find myself wondering why God could of taken such a precious person from me, from my family, at what seemed to be 'too soon'.  The only reasoning I come back to is that her work on this Earth was complete.  And I can see that.  She taught me so much, including how to love, cry, be vulnerable, take care of my kids, be honest, be independent, be a good friend, treat others the way you want to be treated, to be strong, and to care for others even when they don't seem to care for you.  She taught me one million more things and she did SO much for SO many others too...but the bottom line is God thought she had done a good enough job in this thing called life that he was ready for her to come home to Him.  So that she did.  And that's how I have to think of this.

I love and miss you mom.  Every darn day.

Mom and I

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Thinking of mom today

We miss you and love you mom.  Today marks 5 months.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Little Words Wednesday

I had a slew of other conversations with Cavin this week all ready to go for this post.  And then tonight the following conversation occurred with Cavin that wiped away any funny comments about his "bobum", pushing his brother, or playing hide-n-seek.

Kid took my breath away tonight and broke my heart with just 5 words.

Daddy: "Tell mommy what you know about nana."
Cavin: "Nana is in heaven."
Mommy: "Yes, that's right...but you knew that."
Cavin: "Yes."
Daddy: "And who is nana with in Heaven?"
Cavin: "She's in Heaven....."
Daddy: "Uh huh. And is she an angel?"
Cavin: "YES!"
Cavin: "Yep, she's an angel......and....and..."
And with a very concerned look in his wide eyes Cavin looked right at me and said...
"And she's not coming back."
Mommy: After a long pause..."No, she's not."

Monday, May 14, 2012

And so it begins

Vanessa and I are already talking about the wedding.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

When God Created Mothers...

In 1995 when I graduated from high school, St. Agnes had what they called "Madonna Day".  Think Mother of Jesus, not Material Girl. Anyways, the point of it was a reflection on the prior year for the seniors.  Many seniors wrote or recited poems, sang songs, or said something about the year.

Some 17 years ago and in front of my fellow seniors, the entire student population, and the parents of the graduating seniors I chose to say something about my mom and dad.  Along with my good friend Jennie Glass, I recited the following and felt it was a appropriate day to share it with y'all.
When God Created Mothers...

When the Good Lord was creating Mothers He was into his sixth day of "overtime" when the angel appeared and said, "you're doing a lot of fiddling around on this one."

And the Lord said, "have you read the spec on this order?"  She has to be completely washable, but not plastic. Have 180 moving parts...all replaceable.  Rub on black coffee and leftovers.  Have a lap that disappears when she stands up.  A kiss that can cure anything from a broken leg to a disappointed love affair.  And six pairs of hands.

The angel shook her head slowly and said, "Six pairs of way." 

"It's not the hands that are causing me problems," said the Lord.  "It's the three pairs of eyes that Mothers have to have."

"That's on the standard model?" asked the angel.

The Lord nodded.  "One pair that sees through closed doors when she asks, 'What are you kids doing in there?' when she already knows.  Another here in the back of her head that sees what she shouldn't but what she has to know, and of course the ones here in the front that can look at a child when he goofs up and say, "I understand and I love you' without so much as uttering a word."

"Lord," said the angel touching his sleeve gently, "Come to bed.  Tomorrow..."

"I can't, "said the Lord, "I'm so close to creating something so close to myself.  Already I have one who heals herself when she is sick...can feed a family of six on one pound of hamburger...and can get a nine-year-old to stand under a shower."

The angel circled the model of a Mother very slowly.  "It's too soft," she sighed.

"But tough!" said the Lord excitedly.  "You cannot imagine what this Mother can do or endure."

"Can it think?"

"Not only think, but it can reason and compromise," said the Creator.

Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek.  "there's a leak," she pronounced.  "I told you you were trying to put too much into this model."

"It's not a leak," said the Lord, "It's a tear."

"What's it for?"

"It's for joy, sadness, disappointment, pain, loneliness, and pride."

"You are a genius," said the angel.

The Lord looked somber.  "I didn't put it there."
-Erma Bombeck

Happy Mother's Day Mom.
For all of the 'joy, sadness, disappointment, pain, loneliness, and pride' we've had over the last 34 I reflect on the woman who taught me the strength and patience to experience all of the happiness that motherhood offers.  I cannot think of a better teacher.  I love you mom.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Mirror images

Backing up here...

We invited two of Cavin's girl friends over to dye Easter eggs with him and baby brother Ellis.  Cavin (of course) insisted on dying all of his eggs yellow, his favorite color, as seen below...

FOOLED YA!!!  That's actually Jonna, baby Erik, Amy, and MIKE dying Easter eggs some 30 years ago!  Can you believe it??  Friggin' spitting image of creepy IS that??!!

Here's the real Cavin dying eggs:

Like father like son huh?

Thursday, May 3, 2012


My mom loved to travel. And she loved traveling to California.  Better than that she loved traveling to California with friends.  And who better friends to her than her siblings?

Because mom was all about family.  Even though my family has been through some difficult times and we aren't necessarily the poster of white picket fences (who is really?) she instilled in me that through thick and thin it is what is most important. 

She was the center.  The glue that held us together.  My dad recently told me that now I'm that 'glue'.  Well, those are big shoes to fill but I've learned from the best and I'm up for the challenge...I guess.  I have no choice because she would of wanted us to keep strong and moving forward.

Today marks four months without mom.  Not an hour goes by that I don't think of her.  We miss you mom.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Little Words Wednesday

Little words from a little person that make very little sense.

Cavin: "What do pancakes do?"
Mommy: "Pancakes go in your tummy and make you feel full."
Cavin: "And water goes in my bobbum [his word for 'bottom'] and pee needs water and then and then I'm going to play with all of them!"

Cavin: "A motorcycle!!!!"
Mommy: "That's right!"
Cavin: "I'm going to eat him!  I'm going to see the motorcycle and then take it and eat him and then eat alllll the people out there.  And the cars."
Mommy: ".......??......"
Cavin: "And then I'll be full!"

Cavin: "Daddy fixed the gate."
Mommy: "Oh really?"
Cavin: "Brodie pushed me and I cried.  I ran up the hill and he pushed me down and I cried. And dirt got up my nose and smoke came out of my mouth and then daddy fixed the gate."

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Bring on the sun!

Happy Spring-time people!

Dare I say it - but I think the rain is behind us here in the bay area and we are starting to really enjoy spring-time around here. The sun is shining, the boys are logging in some hours at the water table, we are digging out the flip flops, and dusting off the bottles of sunscreen.

And little brother is a walking machine!

Daddy finished Ellis' train-table JUST in time for Christmas Ellis' Birthday him to fully appreciate the hard work put into it.  I'm talking weeks months of sawing, priming, painting coat after coat, shopping for the train tracks, making it the correct height, and adjusting the legs to the perfect angle so it won't topple over when big brother comes to take over.  Mike did a wonderful job and this will be something Ellis can forever keep and hopefully pass down to his son (my grandson!!!) one day.

The Easter bunny visited and big brother took this very seriously.  He found tons of eggs and even shared some with his brother. 

And by "share" I mean opened them up saw that they were golfish, cheerios, or puffs and gave them to brother. The chocolate candies? Well, he saved those for himself.

Yes, we are definitely enjoying the outdoors!!

(a self-portrait of the boys and I at the park)