The Tooth Fairy is Coming!

Goodbye, baby tooth!

Hello Braces!
Yes, that is the permanent tooth, fully in right behind the gaping hole from the lost tooth.

One perfect little tooth for the Fairy.

Growing up so fast!

Is it just me or is "Clean House" running out of dirty houses to clean up? Or is my house just getting so bad that the one's on tv are starting to look like ringers... um, not that damned dirty, by comparison? Seriously before the yelling began yesterday (about 4:30pm as my neighbors can attest to) we could've easily qualified for a little help from Niecey Nash and her crew. Damn shame she left the show, it's just not the same without her. Anyway, there was much yelling and whining and threatening, but by dinner time everything was looking good... um, not so bad I'd have stand at the front door to bar entrance of any possible visitors. Well, it's a start anyway. Baby steps...

Sitting in my living room, once again mocking me is my exercise glider. My girls? They think it is the greatest toy EVAH! Really, only kids think exercising is fun, right? RIGHT?! Where was this menacing piece of machinery before? Well, it was being held hostage by the dust bunnies behind the door in my bedroom. Was so! Okay so I put it back there to make room for the Winter Wonderland in my living room at Christmas. But obviously it was being held there against my will because I put the room back to normal Dec. 27th. Yeah, huh! Anyway, for some reason my lovely children decided this weekend it would be fun to pull out the glider to play on. I figured what the hell, bringing it back out into sight might guilt me into using it. Not so much... just moderate heckling under it's breath so far.

Also joining in on the trash talk are the scraps of paper on the table next to me. Various grocery receipts dug from the depths of my car that I scribbled on while I was sitting waiting to pick up Brooke in car line. Why? Because I had all these ideas for blog posts floating around in my head and wanted to get something written down before I forgot all my good... um, any ideas. Now that's technology for you, I have an iPhone and still have to resort to jotting down thoughts on trash. And yes, I could have typed them directly into blogger on my iPhone. Operative word COULD. Typing on the iPhone should be reserved for Twitter and Facebook updates. In other words < 140 characters. Hey ideas are good, right? Eventually maybe they will turn into actual posts.

Well at least My discombobulated life seems to be finally starting to fall into a routine, step by step. Baby steps count, right?

Poor planning on your part does not create an emergency on my part.

Sometimes small variations just don't really matter. Like my electric bill being $180 or $190, doesn't matter, still a butt load of money out of my budget. Whether I work 1.5 hours two days in a row or 3.0 hours in one morning, doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things. Low fat or regular shredded cheese on my taco tastes the same to me. Don't get me started on that nasty yellow rubber crap they call no-fat cheese though.

Where was I? Oh yeah how I recently discovered a subtle difference that does in fact matter. The difference between a good haircut and a great haircut. Now I wouldn't say I've never had a great haircut before. But remember I was a teen in the 80s, and I have lots of hair, so I merely needed a can of Stiff Stuff to achieve greatness and start that hole in the ozone layer.
These days it takes a much different cut to make my hair sleek and straight and not a frizzy mushroom. Ya'll know I have good hair. So a decent stylist can give me a good cut and then I can blow it out and flat iron it within an inch of it's life and it will eventually do pretty much what I want. For about the last year I've had variations of the same style always cut by the same stylist. She was cheap, close, and easy to get a last minute appointment with, and did a good job on my hair.

Then while I was cheatin' on ya'll with that little hussy FB I found and old friend who is now a hairstylist and recently moved about 20 minutes from me. We kept talking of having her do my hair. But let's be honest, I was hesitant. What if I hated it? Then what? Her salon was far enough away that I used that as my excuse for awhile. Then she offered up doing my hair on a weekend for a much needed mom's night out, wine included. How could I say no?

OMG ya'll! She is a phenomenal hairstylist! I love, love, love my haircut. I really liked the current style, plus since I didn't know what I was getting into, I just asked her to trim and thin it out. And I am amazed at the difference between what I felt was a perfectly good haircut and this haircut. It's hard for me to explain, but the thing that sets it apart most is that it's so easy to do, STILL, almost 3 weeks after she cut it. I had NO IDEA that with a phenomenal haircut it would be SO much easier than what I am used to doing, to get the desired effect!

The first picture is from summer, the second, my kick ass new haircut about 2 weeks ago. Obviously it was a couple inches shorter and hi-lighted before, but can you see how the layers are much more evident and choppy? Now? It's thinned out and I have "Normal people hair" as opposed to being responsible for the ozone problem hair. The summer picture was my class reunion, no kids and plenty of time to primp and get ready, I remember working on my hair And it looked good and I liked it. The recent picture? A school day...enough said.

Anyone who reads my blog in the Orlando area looking for a great hairstylist? I know one!

In honor of the following brilliant SNL news segment by Seth Meyers:

I give you my recent REALLY?! moments.

Loreal how stupid do you think women are? REALLY?! Beyonce did not get that hair at home from a box of Feria. REALLY!

Chris Harrison... how can every Rose Ceremony be the most emotional? And how can you keep saying that with a straight face? REALLY?!

ABC could you not find a decent new show worth watching to put Nathan Fillion in? A cop partner show? That's all you've got? REALLY?!

Hollywood, you try to sell us on a movie with an older couple, finally not a perfect 20 something couple. And yet you still can't even out the couple's ages! Last Chance Harvey stars Dustin Hoffman, age 71, and Emma Thompson, age 49. That's the best you could do? REALLY?

Jessica Simpson's weight? Still?! REALLY?!

U2 songs used on Brothers and Sisters. I love both, but together it is somehow wrong. U2 is the new single really doing that poorly? REALLY?!

Chuck E. Cheese, you honestly think I worry less about my kids in your establishment that in someone's back yard? REALLY?!

What made you say REALLY?! this week?


To the Weekly Word Challenge, the WWC for those in the know.
On this Day the entry is brought to you by the letter G.

Our word for today kids is GERMS. Can you say germs? I knew you could.
The Germs have infiltrated so on this day my counter looks like a pharmacy.
On this day we are on day 2 of munchkin home from school. Yesterday we braved the pediatrician's sick hour, where it was standing room only, and everyone else was also hacking up a lung. Surprise! There's an upper respiratory virus going around. Damn, I so wanted a prescription to make it all go away.

And on this day, my kid looks really sick while inhaling her cinnamon toast for breakfast, doesn't she? Excuse me while I go check my forehead in the mirror for the word sucker!
How about now? Can't you see how tired and weak she is?
She could only write out 5 of her 21 Valentines for her class before she was completely exhausted! See she really is sick. Poor Baby!

Also on this day? I woke up to a dishwasher full of clean dishes.
And a sink full of dirty breakfast dishes. Yes, only 4 of us live here and two of us were eating breakfast when I took this photo. Why do you ask? The excessive amount of dishes is not just on this day, it's everyday around here. I don't know how or why, but I do know judging by the laundry hamper, whoever is eating all that food is also wearing a different outfit for every dish they use!
If you'd like to learn more about the WWC pop on over to Tink's place. She doesn't bite. Well, at least I don't think she does.

Three Words

We Are Tired.
That in a nutshell is why the baby will always be the baby.

My fundamental theories on nature vs. nurture have been thrown out the window since the birth of the baby. Everyday I notice the differences in my girls and many are due to their individual personalities. And although they are both ours, lets face it, the second child she did not get the same parents the first one did. Because raising kids? It's exhausting.

I remember Breanna at 4 making her own breakfast. Okay so it was cereal with milk, but still it was one less "MOMMY" request. Yet, Brooke still whines every morning that she's hungry. Yes, she has two good arms and legs and she is able to pour cereal and milk, hell she can fry and scramble her own egg on a good day. But who wouldn't want their made to order breakfast on the table on command everyday? Know why Breanna to this day makes her own breakfast, including omletes and chocolate chip muffins and Brooke has her's made for her? Same reason Breanna started making her own food to begin with because mommy was busy with the baby. Problem here? The baby is planning her 6th birthday party in 6weeks. Let's face it I am NOT a morning person and am too tired to force a child to do even one more thing in the morning.

When the girls were younger I used to plop them in the tub together. Breanna would bathe Brooke, because, hello real life doll in the tub. And when Bre was big enough to shower guess who wanted to join her? So Brooke has been showering since she could practically stand. But you know what I do everyday for the little princess? I turn on the shower and lay out her pjs for her. It's not a big thing, doesn't take much time, but it is something she is perfectly capable of doing for herself. However, by the time I've nagged two children to do homework and gotten through dinner I am, say it with me, TIRED!

Breanna knew how to tie her shoes at 3 years old. She would tie her friend's shoes to help the teachers in pre-school. Of course when we were teaching Breanna to tie her own shoes, she was getting ready to be a big sister. Everything we could teach her to do on her own would make it easier for mommy when the new baby came along. Brooke rarely wears shoes that even have laces, mostly by choice. On the very rare occasion she does decide to wear tennis shoes one of us ties them for her because it is exhausting to try and teach her. The term strong willed child pops to mind here. I don't know about you but I see a pattern here.

Of course it's not all bad. Being the baby means that somewhere there is a big sister to help teach her to do things like using the potty, dressing herself, doing her homework and navigating the computer like a pro. And the baby being able to do all those things? It helps tremendously when mommy is TIRED.

Because I have created two little monsters. Some days... um weeks... um months... please dear lord don't let it be entire years. I keep thinking my life is becoming a segment of Bill Cosby: Himself you know, this one ... My wife grabs a yard stick... holds it like a samurai warrior... and announces that the beatings will now begin by saying "I HAVE HAD... ENOUGH... OF... THIS!" And these three brain-damaged people have the nerve to looked surprised!

The child who had mommy talking out loud to herself last week was the little one. You know the one who truly believes she is a PRINCESS. Really, we built the child her own CASTLE in her room, what the hell did we expect, right? Make no mistake I take partial credit (hey there's a perfectly fit and involved father in the picture too!) for the issues we are dealing with.

See the first child. She listened, she followed the rules. I counted to 3 and she responded. Not that she didn't, or doesn't have her faults too. I have to keep reminding myself she wasn't the angel I mostly remember. There were many a times she was wailing with her nose in a corner. * However the little one? There is no punishment she won't withstand, no toy or privilege she won't give up. She CAN NOT be bribed... um motivated to do anything she does not want to. I believe the politically correct term is strong willed child. I am praying this will serve us well in the teen years and she will not do anything just because everyone else is doing it. Hey, a mom can hope that somehow this will turn into a good character trait!

Oh and to top it off the child barely eats and doesn't need much sleep. She seemingly subsists off milk and Nickelodeon. So when all these factors are stacked against us our usual stance with eating and bedtime is to give an inch, because really it's just easier than the fight. Now let me say I don't mean we do this with everything. I choose my battles very carefully with her. The problem has become that our giving an inch in the beginning is sometimes turning into her taking a mile over time and it becomes too much. Which is why Tuesday night mommy was a raving lunatic.

See we have been letting her take a toy and book into bed with her for awhile now, because without them she comes out roughly 317 times between bedtime and 9:30pm to tell us how not sleepy she is, how she needs a drink of water, her foot itches, she has to pee, she wants to hear different music, she needs a tissue... or any number of imaginary ailments (my friend said her 5 year old told her she couldn't sleep because her toenails hurt, apparently we are not alone in this war against sleep). Here's the thing we know she's not tired at bedtime, but she needs to wind down and by 9:00pm she needs to be sleeping in order to be up and not cranky for school. Hence the allowance of books and quiet toys.

Where was I? Oh yeah, back to Tuesday. She kept coming out asking to take another toy and another book up to her bed. See she sleeps on top of the castle in a loft bed. Which is great for extra storage space, but hard for mommy to access. After approximately 873 rounds of "Quit Getting Out of Bed" with daddy I decided maybe taking away the goodies already in her bed would get her attention. So I grabbed a step stool and daddy climbed up her ladder and we threw everything on the floor as she cried and screamed. All the while I was mumbling to myself and I sounded much like a Bill Cosby quote.

Anyway, Wednesday after school I made her help clean up the mess we had deposited on her floor and purge some toys to make room for everything down below because the castle turrets had been used to store stuffed animals until then. Since that night we have allowed 2 books which come back down by the morning. And I'm proud to say the plan was working quite well... then last night she got up to get a drink. I promptly told her she would have no tv in the morning because she didn't stay in bed, to which she replied, "No mommy first time the books go," because the night before I took her books away when she got up. Apparently she was finished with the books so she decided to give them up for the drink of water last night! Have I mentioned the child is a master manipulator... um evil genius? Ahh ha, but I was on my toes and countered her with tomorrow night the books don't go first, the tv does. There may be hope for us winning this war yet.

*Come back tomorrow for "Differences in Children Based on Birth Order". Alternate title "Why the Baby Will Always be the Baby."

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