Friday, September 30, 2011

My angry uterus is baby hungry.

It wants to digest a baby.  Oh wait, I mean, gestate a baby.  Man, that would be an embarrassing mistake.

Many of you may be rolling your eyes, questioning why on earth we would want to bring more Neff's into the world.

Aside from the fact that our children are practically perfect in every way, I've always wanted 4.  It's a nice, round, even number.  No middle child.  Middle children are just...weird.  I can say that because I'm an only child, and we're weird too.

Plus, Chloe seems to be enjoying being the baby of the family a little too much, and we can't be having that.  We wouldn't want her to be happy or anything.  So, it would be in her best interest if she was no longer the baby.

These are all excellent reasons to have another baby.

Now how to get Brett on board with this?

It's too late in the year to count the new baby as a tax deduction.  It wouldn't be born until next year...hmm...let's think...

Jump at him from behind a corner and scare him!

No, that only works for the hiccups.

Convince him that if we had 4 kids instead of 3, our mini-van would make more sense and therefore the extra car payment would be worth it.

No, I'm not even convinced of that.

Oh well.  I'll just grab him by the collar and tell him what's what.  Put that baby in my belly!  The other other white meat.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

"My (Not So) Perfect Life" by Elizabeth Owen

I've been looking forward to reading something of Liz's for a long time. I absolutely love her blog, Mable's House.  Here's an excerpt from  her new book:

"Once one has breathed in the deep pungent aroma of sewage, you never again forget the nose-hair singeing, eye clawing, throat gagging experience. It comes over you slowly. You begin to feel like a character in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest as your muscles involuntarily jerk and you run screaming and blowing raspberries. Anything to get away from the mind-numbing stench.
But let me explain.
It was 6:30 a.m. I was standing in my retro pink tiled bathroom trying to open my bleary eyes and ready myself for work. As I stood there, peering into the mirror and wondering what demented nighttime fairy had planted four new wrinkles on my face, I paused and sniffed.
“Matt… what’s that smell?”
Matt staggered from the bedroom in his underwear, eyes half shut. “I don’t smell anything.”
I pointed my nose into the air like a hunting dog. “Seriously? You can’t smell that? Did you go to the bathroom in here earlier? I told you to use the room spray when you do things like that.”
Matt puffed out his bare chest and gathered his pride as best a man can with sleep in his eyes and a small hole in the side of his underwear. “I just woke up!”
I frowned, catching a glimpse of my makeup-less hot-rollers-in-hair state and tried not to think about the fact that I looked fifty instead of twenty-nine. “Well, help me figure this out. Because something smells ripe.”
We sniffed the sink drain and ruled it out as a suspect.
“Is it coming from the toilet?” Matt asked, examining it from top to bottom.
“No, that’s not it,” I snapped. I’m not known for my milk of human kindness in a disaster. Don’t get me wrong. I’m a survivor. I plan on eating my radish like Scarlet and clawing my way out of the nuclear dust while dragging my loved ones with me. But I won’t be doing it with positive phrases and a smile.
“Hon, I just don’t know. We’ll call a plumber after work, maybe it’s coming from under the house.” Matt staggered a little, trying to get past me and out of our tiny bathroom.
“Well, that’s just great,” I moved aside and pulled the shower curtain back so I could perch on the side of the tub and give Matt room to move out the door.
That’s when the full brunt of nastiness filled the air around us, a swirling mix of excrement and acrid stench that would have brought the sewer dwelling Ninja Turtles to their knees. Where the normally slightly-clean-with-a-hint-of-soap-scum bottom of the tub should have been, there sloshed gallons and gallons of brown sewage.
I clutched the front of my sweatshirt and held my breath. Matt began to dry heave.
“Get out and shut the door!” I screamed as we bumbled into the hallway.
“I’ll deal with this,” Matt grabbed my shoulders, trying to talk and hold his breath at the same time.
I could feel my eyes glaze over, the horrors of typhoid and hepatitis in our bathtub filling my mind. But more importantly, I could envision our evaporated savings account. In my mind’s eye I could see the long, gray hallway at the bank. A worker shrouded in a black suit pulled a set of keys from his pocket and unlatched a small locker labeled “Owen Bank Account.” Inside were two small stacks of quarters and a few crumpled dollar bills. It was bleak, not only because the banker with an unimaginative wardrobe gazed at me with an expression that could only be interpreted as “You’re a Big Fat Loser,” but also there was a very definite possibility we wouldn’t be able to pay for a plumber.
I wasn’t necessarily a spend thrift. In fact, I was downright frugal when it came to decorating with thrift store furniture and rewired vintage lamps. But the fact was, we were poor. We were starting out at starter jobs with starter salaries. We were starter adults with a starter bank account.
“Okay,” I nodded numbly, thankful that Matt was taking the lead on such a disastrous biohazard. “But make sure the plumber is super cheap. We don’t have much money!”
I left for work like a wino stumbling through a fog, not really remembering my commute, not really doing any work as I sipped my coffee and stared blankly at the computer screen. A disaster of such gargantuan proportions had previously been unthinkable in my life, and now I found myself attempting to push the image of a vast sea of bathtub poop from my mind. But I was sure of one thing: Anne Shirley never had to get ready for work while breathing raw sewage."

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"What took you so long?"  I asked Brett.  He was an hour late from Young Mens.  "Just kidding.  Did you have a good time?"

"Yeah, it was fun.  We played volleyball."

"That's what you get to do while I'm stuck here all alone with those heathens upstairs?  Play volleyball!"

"Not just you," he says.  "The other wives are stuck at home alone, too, honey."

I love my husband.  Always keeps things in perspective.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Fit of Insanity

In a fit of insanity I told my husband last night that I thought housewives should earn their keep.

The insanity, I'm sure, was caused by a sudden increase in urgency to clean my house.  Which I did.  I was really, really sick in the head.

The epiphany, that all housewives should earn their keep, stemmed from this sickness.

Therefore, I maintain the right to rescind my above comment.


And this has nothing to do with the fact that I just want to veg out on the couch eating nachos and downing chocolate milk while watching Eureka re-runs.


Holes in the Fence

I like this story.  I try to remember it when I'm upset with the kids or Brett, which, like, never happens.  But on the rare occasion it does...

There once was a little boy who had a bad temper. His father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, he must hammer a nail into the back of the fence.
The first day the boy had driven 37 nails into the fence. Over the next few weeks, as he learned to control his anger, the number of nails hammered daily gradually dwindled down. He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence.
Finally the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that he was able to hold his temper. The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone.
The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence. He said, “You have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave a scar just like this one. You can put a knife in a man and draw it out. It won’t matter how many times you say I’m sorry, the wound is still there.”
The little boy then understood how powerful his words were. He looked up at his father and said “I hope you can forgive me father for the holes I put in you.”
“Of course I can,” said the father.

This is also a great story: The Room

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Happiness to Me...

During my morning Facebook reading I noticed how a lot of my old friends from HS have become big party people.

Every Saturday morning it's the same post, "Had a blast last night getting wasted and urinating in public."  

For some reason when I read these I feel really sad for them.  I mean, obviously they're happy with their life.  But what are they really happy about?

For me, their posts start to blend into each other.  They're all about the same thing.  I have a strong feeling, just like their posts, that their life is just a blend of the same night, over and over.

Isn't it funny how not many of those entire nights stand out for these people, but tiny, almost seemingly insignificant moments are burned into the mind of parents.

"Summer just went poop in the potty all by herself today!  For the first time!"

"McKay just ate his first Oreo cookie!"

"Tristin just got his green belt in Karate!  I'm so proud of him!"
These are tiny moments in these parents lives, and yet they'll be with them forever.  The moment, the feeling, the excitement.  I know, I have thousands of those moments stored up in my own mind.

I don't remember much about my late nights out as a teenager (except for the ones with Brett).  They're all pretty much the same.  Fun, but utterly pointless.  Something to fill the time until I would finally be old enough to do whatever I wanted.

Turns out what I wanted was a family.  And substantial memories.  Microscopic happy moments my heart feels strong enough to hold onto forever.

I guess, for me, happiness is found in living my life for someone else, not for myself. 

I wish I could explain this to those friends out partying every night, putting off family life, putting off life in general.  There's so much happiness to be had.  And shockingly, that happiness isn't found at the bottom of a beer bottle.  It's found in a poopy diaper, apparently.  

Speaking of which, I'll talk to you all later.  

Friday, September 16, 2011

It's Exhausting

And wonderful.

Exhausting and wonderful.

And it all seem to start at the exact. Same. Time.

My life was busy enough, at least I thought so.  But now I have two kids in school, karate, ballet, theater, and temper-tantrums 101 (Chloe is teaching that class).

I'm still trying to figure it all out.  Pay this one monthly, buy new uniform for this one, oh crap, it's school picture time, what do you mean your ballet slippers don't fit?  Whose birthday party is it on Sunday?  Do we just drop you off or do we all barge in and stay and eat the entire cake?


I've never been one to experience anxiety (insert chuckle) but I'm sure any minute I'm going to forget to pick a kid up, drop one off, or not pay something in time and therefore ruin that childs' entire life.

But you know, I never really feel so overwhelmed that I can't move forward.  So stressed that I can only sit and rock myself in the corner.  The more stuff thrown at me just roots me deeper into my Eternal calling as mother, wife and friend.  I love it.  I love it all.

And I love, love, LOVE earning my sleep.  You know those nights (every night) that you lay down in bed (at 8:30 pm) and can't move a muscle, can't form a thought, and you just pass out?  I love those nights.  Sure I miss staying up giggling with Brett (interpret as you please), but we still have fun nights.  Not every day is so exhausting.

Still, I love it.  Now I'm off to pick up Brett and Cohen from something...somewhere...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I'm not dead.

I mean, I'm pretty sure I was dead on Monday, which subsequently pushed back our trip home 2 more days.

I don't think my mom minded.  We crashed in their spare bedroom and she drooled over the kids for an extra 48 hours.  I'm glad my misery could bring such happiness.

But now we are home.  We went to Utah for...7 total days (I had to do the math in my head...and use my hands.)  My sister Tianna finally got married to the love of her life, Scott.  And, of course, he got married to his, so it really worked out.

I missed the rehearsal and all of Kembry's tantrums on Friday because of, what I thought, was a nasty cold.  Saturday, the wedding went off without a hitch.  Unless you wanted food.  Apparently the caterer's help didn't show up.  She was alone and behind.  So, Brett and I manned ourselves behind the buffet and helped out the desperate caterer.  People were not kind.  I coughed in their food.  Please don't tell my sister.

Sunday I stayed in bed and wished for death.

Monday I stayed in bed and wished for death.  And visited the doctor.  Who gave me the greatest medicine in the world, a Z pack.  Yummmm.  (BTW, not a cold.  Rhinositis-something-something-bronchitis-something-something-death.)

Tuesday I didn't wish for death, but I should have stayed in bed.  Instead, I visited Miss Jessie and cooed over little baby Cory and fell in love all over again.  I promise I didn't kiss her, or lick her fingers, or blow on her tummy.  I kept all my little dying bacterium to myself.

Wednesday I drove...and drove...and drove...stopped at a gas station...drove...and drove...and drove...went through Zions National Park during a wicked rain storm which was freaking awesome...drove...drove...and home.

I have never been so happy to be in Arizona.  We don't have TV, so I have no idea what the weather is like.  Do they provide that sort of information online?  No, I doubt it.  The kids are back in school, Chloe is HOME, which is right where she should be, and going to go to bed.  At 5 p.m.  Don't wake me up unless you have chocolate.

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