Tuesday, February 27, 2007

On the road...Here I am, blogging from the bedroom of a condo in Vail, Colorado. First off, for Mama T, the definition of boondoggle applicable to this trip is "a wasteful or impractical project or activity often involving graft" . It means I have a business associate (another chemical company) who puts out massive amounts of money to pay for my room, meals, ski rentals, lift tickets, etc. under the guise of a "winter seminar". So for a half hour one morning we listen to an economist give us his outlook on energy markets and the rest of the time we enjoy the ridiculously luxurious trip. Nice, eh?

Except here's the thing, and I truly shouldn't complain because few people ever get these types of opportunities. But I miss the boys. Stuff is happening at my house and I'm not there. I'm sad to miss the good and the bad. Hayden was throwing up Sunday and I wasn't there to comfort him. Trevor was up in the middle of the night (likely screaming for milk to no avail) and I wasn't there to put him back to bed. Trevor has apparently learned to blow kisses in my absence. And he brings his plate into the kitchen when he's done eating. I won't be home till tomorrow night and he'll probably be off to college by then.

So I successfully skiied two days without a single mishap and it's really, really lovely here. But it just isn't the same to be somewhere wonderful when you're not able to share it with the people you love. My favorite part of the trip was the few times I rode the little chair lift by the bunny hill and was asked to escort a ski-schooler up the lift. Those five minute rides with Elan (5-yr old boy from New Jersey) and Henry (7-yr old boy from St. Louis) were the highlight of my day. We chatted about Cars (the movie) and Spiderman and their younger siblings, etc. and I felt like a mom for a minute as I helped them on and off the list and made sure they reconnected with their group at the top of the hill. Doing your own thing is fun, but being a mom is better.

I'll close with this picture of me taken with the camera phone today. Aren't I the picture perfect ski bunny? HA!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Just stopping in...to say hello. I haven't blogged in a few days. Been working later than usual. I'm headed to Vail on a "business" trip on Saturday. Sean will be on his own with the kids till Tuesday. I know that would be a challenge for most dads, but he's truly up to the task. Honestly, I think he'll do better with them alone for four days than I would. After six years of marriage and being spoiled, I've apparently forgotten how to:
  • Pump gas
  • Wash dishes
  • Walk the dogs
  • Feed the dogs
  • etc.
Where Super-Dad/Husband can do all of this and more. So they'll be fine while I'm boondoggling on the slopes.

Tomorrow is my Parent-Helper day at Hayden's school. They're having a chuckwagon and a bunch of dads are coming in to cook a "cowboy" breakfast. Oh yes indeedy, it's Rodeo kick-off time in Houston. Yippee! One of the other moms was ribbing me about needing to wear my cowgirl gear. I prodded her into wearing her pajamas on PJ day, so I guess she thinks it's my turn. The real problem is this: I don't own any rodeo-type gear. No boots, no hat, no bandanas, no chaps. I do have jeans, so that will be my big statement. Pretty unimpressive, huh?

I'm a bit out of sorts today because I got some terrible news today about Monika, who was just diagnosed with ovarian cancer after removal of a large cyst. She is very close to someone in my family. It has me very concerned for both her and those who will be supporting her through the next steps, which looks like a short time to recover from the surgery and then an aggressive course of chemo. So if you can, keep her in your prayers.

Monday, February 19, 2007

What next? I've been informed that the Cheesecake Factory has discontinued the Coffee Heathbar Crunch Cheesecake. I should start making a list of places I don't go anymore because they've taken my favorite items off the menu. What's the problem folks? Everyone needs to have the same great taste that I have and keep ordering my favorite stuff so it stays on the menu. Things that need to be revived:

  • BW3 Veggie & Cheese Buffalitos
  • Cheesecake Factory Veggie Quesadillas
  • Chuy's Boom Boom Sauce (EVERY DAY, not just Fridays)
  • Black Walnut's Chipolte Pepper Pasta

OK, I'm sure there are more things. If I was the motivated type, I'd start a petition. Oh, I guess I should also include Sean's favorite discontinued items:
  • Quisp cereal (available on-line, but not in our local store)
  • Bisco's Waffle Cream cookies

The cheesecake thing is really bothering me. I think I've tried every other cheesecake on the menu and thought they were mostly a waste of time. I always regretted getting sucked in to try something other than the coffee heathbar crunch. What else is there to keep the Cheesecake Factory in business? The long waits and crappy service and overpriced food aren't the real draw, you know.

Friday, February 16, 2007


Here was Trevor's cupid picture from this year:

Here was Hayden from 2004:

Hayden was always more smiley as a baby for pictures. Trevor has to rely on those blue eyes to suck you in. He laughs a whole lot, but never seems to do it when I'm hiding behind my lens. Then again, you probably wouldn't laugh either if your Mom stuck you in a gold diaper and strapped wings on you.

Surprise! We went to Lake Charles yesterday afternoon to surprise Grandma Carole for her 75th birthday. Looks like we were successful...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day
Our little cupid is sending out sweet wishes of love to all of you on this Valentine's Day. Hope you're all spending today with someone huggable.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Conversations in the car...

Hayden: Grandma Neese {his name for Grandma Denise} is going to come back to visit next month for your birthday.

Me: That's nice, but I'll probably be in San Antonio again for my birthday.

Hayden: Why do you have to go to San Antonio for your birthday?

Me: I have a big convention there every year on my birthday so I have to go to some meetings.

Hayden: I don't like to go to meetings and do business. I just want to play ball and golf. When I get bigger, I'm going to play golf on a real golf course.

Me: Sounds like you're going to be in Sales when you grow up.

And who really does like going to San Antonio for a week of meetings for their birthday every year?
Sick after sick? Well, I was successfully recovered from the food poisoning when I was hit by some bug on Thursday afternoon which wiped me out for the second half of Thursday and the whole day Friday. I think it was the same nasty fever that overtook the boys a few weeks ago.

So I went through chills and sweating all night Thursday and dragged myself into Hayden's room on Friday morning at 7:30 am and said "OK, time to get up and get ready for school". Hayden says "I don't want to go to school every day Mom." I said "OK" and shuffled back to my room and went back to bed. My heart wasn't in it to begin with. Maybe if he was old enough to be dropped at the curb I could have done it, but I have to take him inside and sign him in. After a sweaty night that would have required a shower and washing my hair and I just didn't have the strength.

But I really, really think I'm all better now, so hopefully will be blogging and blipping with more regularity.

The nanny called in sick yesterday and I took advantage of the free day and took some really fun Valentine's photos, but I can't share yet or it will spoil the surprise for those who will recieve them in the mail. For my international friends, you'll have to settle for an e-mail version because I didn't get my act together early enough to have any hope of getting them to you in time.

So now that I've teased you on the Valentine's pics, we should catch up a little. Here are a few last photos from our visit with the Deans:

Daddy's little girl:

The whole family:
Anne and Olivia:

I like the contrast on this one between my bed-headed boys and Olivia all dressed up and ready to travel:Miss Shelley with an armful at Miss Traci's Superbowl party (not much more to say about the disappointing results of the game. I'll have to wait another year before I can bust into my Superbowl Shuffle again).
Can you believe this lovebug is 20 months old? He's hardly even a baby anymore, but he's still my baby.

Oh yes Mommy, I do intend to climb up and stand on this chair. I'm learning from your example.

Have to get one in of the big guy with his wry smile:
Oh and check out the mouth full of teeth on Trevor. He's actually loving brushing his teeth these days, which is quite a change from the wrestling matches I used to have with Hayden at this age:
A tender moment between Sean and the boys:
The beauty of the moment is marred only slightly by Trevor's INCESSANT habit of biting Hayden if he's forced to share our attention:
Finally a set that can only be called the beanie shots. I bought this propeller beanie as a gimmick to amuse kids when I'm taking pictures. Trevor found it in the bag and thought it would be fun to try it on:
And he thought it would be even funnier to put it on Sean:
Hayden saw the other guys having a blast and thought he'd give it a whirl:
And finally, something rarely seen on this blog (and only half-seen here), a picture of me. Taken by the other photographer in the house, Hayden:

Whew, I'm exhausted. That should teach me not to go so long without posting again.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Sick...I was sick this week. Well, I don't know if sick is the right word, but it appears I had a little case of food poisoning. So I have to give a big electronic hug to my pal Michele for chauffeuring me home and not even complaining when my lunch made a reappearance on the side of her car. But I was amused to hear feedback from the folks in the office who were speculating about my illness.

Steve says "Well you know, she was sitting in there eating jelly beans and popcorn all afternoon. That's bound to make a person throw up." Buck says "That might make a normal person sick, but that's her normal everyday diet, so I don't think that would make her sick." Just FYI, I'm guessing it was probably the BK Veggie Burger I had at lunch, perhaps the mayo was bad. So I don't even want to look at one of those things again. But the jellybeans and popcorn, bring 'em on.

Mama T. posted a food diary the other day. It made me feel ashamed of myself. Here I am a vegetarian, supposed to be showing some healthy eating habits, and I exist almost entirely on french fries and candy. My food diary would be totally embarrassing.

Anyways, the food poisoning had me off my feet for a few days, but I'm back at the keyboard. I don't think I've taken a single picture since Sunday so look for some catch-up this weekend.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Tiffany made me do it:

Your 1996 Theme Song Is: Who Will Save Your Soul by Jewel

Who will save your soul when it comes to the flower
Who will save your soul after all the lies that you told, boy
Who will save your soul if you won't save your own?

Monday, February 05, 2007

Thank you UPS man! There's a bit of confusion in our household about the UPS man. Hayden seems to think he's a Santa Claus-like character. A few weeks ago, he received some games in the mail for his birthday. I asked him who sent them to him and he replied "The UPS man!". I said, "No Honey, the UPS man delivered the packages, but somebody else sent them to you." And he said, "No Mommy, the UPS man gave these to me." So Steph and James, thanks for the great gifts, but you're not really getting credit unless you deliver things by hand apparently.

For our anniversary, Sean ordered me a few treats (candy-YUM, popcorn-YUM) that were delivered to the house, by you-know-who. Hayden was very excited "Look what the UPS man brought for you Mommy." So thanks UPS man, I don't know how you remembered my anniversary, but you always think of the most thoughtful gifts. Keep 'em coming.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Happy Anniversary...In a few hours it will be six years since we said "I do" and it seems like it was just a few minutes ago. So happy smooch-a-versary to my honey and thanks for giving me many years to remember and even more to look forward to. I love you Smoochy. P.S. Thanks for the beautiful flowers. You picked all my favorites.
A basketball player? Hayden had his 4-year old check-up yesterday. They said he was "off the charts" on height, which means over 97th percentile. The doctor asked him if he was going to be a basketball player. He said, "No, I'm going to be a baseball player." The doctor told him he could be a basketball player AND a baseball player. The kid seemed pretty excited to hear that the two weren't mutually exclusive.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Fever week...I guess we have a bug running through the house. Trevor woke up Sunday (at 10:30 am) with a fever, took some Tylenol, had some milk, and went back to sleep at 11:00 am. He slept until 3:30 pm, took some more Tylenol and then had a good evening. Yesterday, it appears that our houseguest Olivia caught the bug and she had a fever and took a nearly 5 hour nap (very unusual for her). Today, Hayden woke up with a fever. Hopefully his passes as quickly as the others. He's actually harder to deal with than the babies. They just whimper and want to cuddle and sleep. He wails pitifully and just screams "I don't want any medicine." He has his 4-year check-up today so I guess maybe the doctor can tell us if anything serious is going on.

I have to share a few pics of Olivia from Tuesday. I took the day off to spend with Anne and Olivia, but we never got a chance to do anything since the kids precisely staggered their naps so one of the three was sleeping the entire day. But we did take some pre-birthday photos of Olivia since she'll be turning ONE in just two weeks.

You know I'm going to undress your baby for some pictures if you bring them to my house:

But I can appreciate how adorable a little girl can be in her pretty pink dress:

I might just bake a cake and blow up some balloons so we can have a real birthday party:

It turns out that not everyone loves cake as much as I do, but sad babies can be awfully cute too: