Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Still Fits

My Poet, 14 yrs old today

You, my special boy, are 14 years old today.

How this happened? Anybody? Drop me a line, because I turned away for a second, and there it was.

You are the one I can write the most about and you are the one that leaves me with my pen poised in the air over my paper, unable to find the words that fit. You did this to me when you were just ten days old, when you reached for my face with your little hand, when you heard my voice. You left me astounded, speechless, then, and you still do now.

When you were almost 2 years old, you brought me a picture of a tiger you had drawn, complete with black stripes and green eyes, swishy tail with the hair tuft detailed at the end. I didn't even know you could hold a crayon yet. Your drawings still leave me shaking my head, in disbelief.

When you were almost 2 years old, you spelled your name out with the wooden alphabet train letters we had. Not a single letter was missed. I have the picture. I knew no one would believe me. People still don't.

When you were almost 2 years old, you scared my oldest sister by naming all the planets in the solar system, while you climbed on the swings at the park. She asked me that afternoon in the summer, "aren't you scared he can do all that?"  She still doesn't get you, and I catch her watching you with curiousity.

You've never scared me.

You've always amazed me. A-mazed.

You are the least like the me I am now, and the most like the me I would have been, if people had let me.

Your needs are clear, direct, and never require guessing.

Your feelings are public, where mine have been tamed into society accepting quiet.

You know what you need. The way you have been able to organize all your passions, kept in order in your room, the need to rush upstairs for quiet after you return from a fully scheduled day, your dislike for being hurried. I see you, and I remember all these same feelings.

I understand it all. I did when you were small, and I still do now.

You are direct with your communication, there is no gray.

Which is why this picture, this picture, is one I can't tear my gaze away from today.

What is it that you really think? What do you see? Does something make you wonder?

For your birthday today, I've tried to complete the list you carefully and deliberately detailed for me, about the things you want.

Do you think you could, today, as a small token of affection for me, provide me with the same careful, deliberate details, about you?


Happy, wonderful, birthday, to my sweet, sweet poet Maximus. 

I love you.

I hope you have an amazing birthday day, and receive everything you wished for. 

Love, forever, mama 

*I decided to call this post "Still Fits," since a poem I wrote for Maximus, when he was 4 yrs old, still fits him to this day. 

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Holiday Greetings And Saving Myself A Stamp

With Royal Love (the best kind), 

Alexander-15, Maximo-14, Baby E-8
The Emperor & Empress, Mark and Alexandra  

Thursday, December 23, 2010

A Digital Nativity---Truly Awesome

Found this at JenniG's from Hip As I Wanna Be, one of my favorite bloggers.

You'll enjoy this, and family friendly.

My 3 boys adored it. This video is less than 3 minutes long, and tells the nativity story in the digital age.


MERRY CHRISTMAS and Happy Holidays!!

I wish peace and love to all of you. Thank you for making 2010 so blessed for me. I still find it hard to believe I didn't know any of you a year ago.

You have all changed my life for the better, and enriched in ways that I could never find the words for.

Thank you so very much for your caring, and loving, and time. Quite the gift you've given to me, and I am so grateful. xo

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Last Woman Standing

Journal Entry by Baby E,  Dec. 22, 2010

The flu has hit our house.


Had baking cookies, decorating tree, wrapping presents, and mailing cards on today's list.

Now replaced with washing sheets, changing pillowcases, pajamas, underwear, and towels.

Also add store runs for gatorade and chicken broth.

2 days before Christmas.

Pray I don't go down.


Friday, December 17, 2010

Fresh Pots!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dear Coffee:

I love you.

I always knew I loved you. I never had to live the "don't know what ya got till it's gone" with you.

I knew what I had.

Coffee, my coffee, the perfect drink. Black gold. Brings you up, yet calms you down.

Revs you up, powers up the brain. All the cylinders firing.

Like a good Colombian family, our day began with you percolating in the pot, coffee. I received my own first percolator at age three, which my Spanish grandmother would fill with coffee and my brother and I would sit and sip in the warm, sweet soul smoothness of our coffee. We were masters of slowly stirring in the cream till it was the perfect caramel brown.

We just knew how much cream to add, it's part of the DNA we came with.

I was not new to the power of caffeine, oh, no, not then, not now, not ever.

I understood all the coffee jokes, I got it--- I'd even poke fun at my own twitching eyes.

I also confess that it was me that began my husband down this same, indulgent  path. Poor soul, he never stood a chance.One morning, after a particularly focusing round of the bean, I almost had him convinced he could run for president, and win. After one more cup, emitting a Howard Dean primal scream, he was submitting papers.

Coffee. You can have intelligent conversation when you hold a mug in your hand, you are confident with a mug in your hand, you are clever and witty, sharp, focused, and the ideas are firing off in your head like a little boy with a cap gun.You'd be left with such a good feeling, that at times I could scarcely believe that something this good out of Colombia was legal.

My days are built around coffee. Get up, get going, have that cup, be in a good mood, get it all done, do the exercising, the smiling, and wow.. the ideas for the posts... bing bing bing. 50,00 lined up and ready in draft and celebrate me! Woo hoo! Ima get the stuff done today.

I'd finish one cup and start another. People would mention they were cutting down to two a day, and I'd quip, "yeah, me, too... TWO POTS!" Hilarious, coffee made me hilarious.

On the days of that perfect, centering caffeine buzz, where the balance of coffee ingested was just right that you loved everybody and everything and Life is sooooo SO good, you'd look in the mirror and loved that, too, with that youthful, adrenaline cherry flush in your cheeks and only the two second attention span courtesy of coffee to not stare much longer.

To those of you who know just what I'm talking about, your mouth  is already wetting and salivating as you read this post. You have the thought of a good, hot, fresh cup of coffee to hold in your permanently coffee clawed hand, fingers molded by the mug's handle, don't you? You know you can smell it if you close your eyes. Ahhh... nothing. like. it.

But, 'tis a dark day for me here in my small town.

Even my children understand what is happening today. Middlest said today in the car returning from the Doctor, "Mom, I feel so sorry for you. I can't believe you can't have coffee."  Smallest added his points of concern, "You were so much fun, Mom, you'd drink your coffee and then chase us, Mom."  Oldest understands, "Mom, you love coffee. what are you going to do? "

Yes, yes, oh, yes, I do love my coffee.

 But, last week, you remember the night, don't you, Coffee?  Where I found myself sitting up in bed all night, unable to sleep, panicking at the symptoms of the worst reflux I have ever had.

Sensations so bad, I almost took myself in to the ER at 3 a.m.

Promising God anything in exchange for surviving the night.

I endured the night and was able to wait it out until morning. I drove to our family health center and sat outside in the parking lot, awaiting the last few minutes out in agony until they opened for the day.  The staff there allowed me to see our family physician before his other scheduled appointments. At the sight of him, along with being so grateful to finally be receiving medical attention, and with the fresh memories of the longest night of my life just hours behind me, my lips were loosed. I let go the floodgates of truth and disclosed the details of my until then secret two pot consuming lifestyle. He, in his $700 cashmere blazer, decreed the unholiest of the unholies, the diagnosis and prescribed medication along with firm orders of "no more coffee."

No more coffee for your overcaffeinated body. Swallow these three pills twice a day and stay away from your coffee.

Like that. Like.that.

And that's how it went down, coffee.

I love you, I miss you, I gaze at you from a safe distance, where you can't hurt me. I think of all who get to cradle you now, both hands encircling their favorite mug this morning,  feeling the warmth of you and the satisfying almost burning hurts so good sensation of you sliding down their throat.

I think of them,  because it can no longer be me.
I watch them, as they gently blow across your smooth surface before they take that slow, measured sip, then I see them close their eyes and softly inhale the steam rising from their cups.
Oh, the magic of that steam, the steam that opens up more than your sinuses; the steam that gives way to confidences exchanged through lowered voices. I know these moments so very well. 

I miss you.

I still keep you around, just a small amount, in a rolled up shiny off-white bag, hidden behind the vitamins, so that I can for a minute, open you and inhale you and linger on your seductions. But I have thrown the coffee pot away.

Had to. So powerful is your siren's call to me, so weak is my resistance.

Too many weak moments potential.

Too many "just this once, and then, never again," lurkings.

And, now, here I am, coffeeless, at a loss for what to write about, and the only thing that comes to my mind, is

Coffee, I love you.

I wish I could quit ya.

I am tremendously better since off the joe, and on the healing meds. I haven't slept this good and uninterrupted in ages. I move very slowly, as slow as Uncle Joe, and I do stare blankly back and am stuck for a response when you say "good morning," but I feel good. And I haven't slipped off the wagon yet. Those four nights of sitting up awake, in mid-chested pain, pretty much scared the pants off me. So, yeah, there's that memory keeping me unleaded.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Tricks To Getting What You Want For Christmas, That Work by Baby E

This is a space pirate

Monday, only 1 more Monday, and then it's Christmas~wish I were kidding. So, being Monday, it's Baby E's Post Day. And this is one he has been taking notes on.

This post is for kids only.

And he is very serious about the topic: "How To Get What You Want For Christmas." So, gather the kids, and Baby E will let them in on his sworn to work tricks of working the parental units. And, now, Baby E speaks:

My mom loves this picture. It's just me playing around. But this is a good trick to getting your Christmas presents. I'll tell you why.

Tricks To Getting Your Christmas Presents 
The tricks I'm going to tell you about today are for kids only.

They only work for kids.

If you have a kid that doesn't read, it's OK if you read this to them.
If they can read alone, then they can read this.

These are the tricks that always work for me. To get what I really want for Christmas.

1. These tricks only work for the stuff you really want. You can't use them for everything you want. It can't be for goofy things. Only the stuff you really want. Like "have to have" stuff. The stuff you want more than anything.  

2. You first have to make a list of everything you want. Even if it is 3 pages. Make a long list, and have lots of things you see on there. Make a list that looks like you want 10050 things and then do that. You don't have to write, just cut out the picture of anything you like you see and gluestick it to paper.

You can make this list as big as you want. Then your parents will see how much you want. The trick is this: when they see how much you want, they will only get you what you really want.  It works.

3.  Sing Christmas carols...all the time. Sing in your loudest, happiest voice and they will love this. They will feel like shopping for you. Sing "Away In A Manger" as loud as you can while you do good and quiet things like saying, "mom, I'm making Christmas cards for my brothers." This trick works. She will feel like buying you something that day. Make your mom ornaments, too.

4.  Tell your mom to play Christmas music. Always ask for that. This works.

5. Put on a Christmas play called "A Christmas Carol." You can be all the ghosts. You can be the Ghost of Christmas Past, The Ghost of Christmas Present, and The Ghost of Christmas That Will Be. I got this idea after we went to see A Christmas Carol last week.

You do this: make a play sign saying there is a play. Call your family to sit on the sofa. Have only one light on. Use a blanket for all your costumes.

The Ghost of Christmas Past can be you showing how happy you were last year when you got your favorite gift.

The Ghost Of Christmas Present will be you showing them how happy you will be when you get that one gift you really want.

The Ghost of Christmas Future will be you showing them how sad you will be when your one gift you really wanted isn't under the tree.

This will work. I practiced this morning, and my mom, well, I could tell it will work.  

6.  Your Christmas lists are important. I showed mine to my dad and he told me I needed to rank them in order of wanting and to write on top of the list "Updated" and "Newest Version" so that he would know. He said this would help. And so I do that when I add to my list. Next week, I will have my mom show your kids my lists.

7.  I told my mom that I cannot do chores today, I have to work on my updated list and it is the most important. And she said OK.

8. Have your mom watch the Target.com commercials together with you about the kids who are so happy when they open their presents. This will work.

9.  It is IMPORTANT to be the nicest person in the world starting right now.

10.  Do stuff without anyone asking you to.

11.  When your mom shops, ask your brothers to go with her. So she doesn't buy crazy stuff.

12.  When you make an updated list, you have to shout "Updated List is up!"

13. Put the catalogues with the stuff you really want all over. I put them in my dad's bathroom, his favorite room. He can look at it then. When he goes to the bathroom, I knock on the door, and say, "Dad? Do you see the catalogue in there?" He says, "Yes, Baby E, thank you." 

These things will work. Next week I will show you my lists.

I have one more thing to say:

Why do people do ornamental dumping?
 My mom was driving, and we went past a house that had a HUGE Frosty the Snowman next to a Candy Cane Lane and next to a Baby Jesus and next to a giant snow globe and then there was 2 reindeer with a Santa next to them!
That is ornamental dumping!
You cannot have Baby Jesus next to a snow globe! You have to decide what you want and can't have everything in front of your house like that.


It snowed today like a blizzard and church was cancelled and so was my brother's volleyball game and we stayed inside in pajamas!
Happy Holidays to all of you! 

Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday Funny With The Mayor and The Grammatically Incorrect

 Don't you love this? "Yo Comments are wack"

 I wait all week for the Friday Funny Link Up with The Mayor of Crazy Town. 

 Seriously.  Hop on over to The Mayor's and visit the other Friday Funnys. What else are Fridays for??

Have a wonderful weekend everyone, get LOTS done..because, well, you know, only FIFTEEN MORE DAYS TILL XMAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

After you watch this HILARIOUS YouTube video by Sister Salad on grammatically incorrect comments, it's off the internets with you all.

Go. Work. (or shop) Now.

Monday, December 6, 2010

For Narnia!!!!

Me at this really fun pumpkin farm this year

Mondays=Baby E posts.

Yes, Baby E posts. 

The emails and comments came in all "For Narnia! " and "Keep Baby E!" and I thought, "heck, yeah, I'll keep Baby E." And so, here you have it.

I don't know what mental state came over me and I thought I'd change Baby E just because a few emails told me that they hoped I had already started to save my money now for the future therapy Baby E would surely need since I'm calling him "Baby" and clearly, he is no baby.


It's Baby E. Back to Baby E. And here he goes. Thanks so much for stopping!!!

Hi!  I'm glad my mom kept my name. I'm used to it.

My new friend I made even calls me "Baby E" now and he says he feels cool when he says it. He said, "I feel cool when I call you Baby E." 

My mom got a mug with Baby E on it, right, Mom? ("shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh....baby e....it's going to be a Xmas treat...." ) OK, Mom.

This weekend was great  
This weekend was great.
It was all sports.
Oh, I have so much to say about it.
I go to a SpeedSchool here.
They teach you how to go so fast, and I got fast after 2 times only.
My dad takes me. My mom says it's too hard for her to watch how much work they make me do. But I love that part. They have me push tires over and over. And when I'm done with SpeedSchool, I say to my mom, "touch my hair" and she goes "oh!" cuz it's soaking sopping wet with sweat.

My dad jokes and makes me laugh when he takes me, he says, "Oh! I was getting so mad when I saw how hard they made you work, I almost jumped in there and let them have it!"

My dad cracks me up.

And basketball started, too. I'm good at that. I love our coach, Lenny. He's funny, too. So, on Saturdays now, I am very busy.

After SpeedSchool, and basketball, I had to go straight to Scouts. And I mean crazy straight. Like a movie. My dad picked me up from basketball and had me put my scout shirt OVER my basketball shirt and I went to Scouts like that! Like in a movie.

We went to a Nursing Home to give out these ornaments we made to the people that live there. My mom always says she loves old people, and that we will all be old one day and to always think of that. I know she says that's true but I can't imagine that of me.

I loved this weekend. 


My older brother next to me is a TurtleMan. He does everything slow. S-L-O-W. I call him TurtleMan. He eats slow, he comes when you call him, slow. He gets his shoes and coat on slow. He prints and draws slow. My mom says he is just being "careful and exact." He doesn't care, he even calls himself TurtleMan.

Sometimes my mom gets frustrated and says, "Maximus! We have been waiting for you since the dinosaurs to get your coat on. Come.On.Now!" and I say, "Mom, look at at this way, at least he can't get any slower." And that makes her laugh. 

I Think I Want A Little Brother
I think I want a little brother sometimes. I want a little brother because he would be fun to have and my friend has a little brother and he is funny. And my other friend is going to have a little brother soon, his mom is popping!

I do want a little brother.  But, sometimes, I think I don't because I would lose my rank in the cuteness factor. I know I would fall out of the cuteness range, so I think no, maybe, I won't have a little brother.

Who Would Do This
 My mom read the Aesop's Fable The Tortoise and The Hare to me.
And all I could think is "who would do that?" Come On. How can you be surprised to lose when you hello? take.a.nap during a race? Who does that? Just cuz you're winning does NOT mean you say, "oh, I'm winning, I think I'll take a nap."

You keep going to the end. My dad says you keep running and don't slow down in a race until AFTER you get to the finish line. After you cross it, then you take your nap.

I can't believe that story.


We went to see MegaMind. I really wanted to go and was excited when my mom said we were going. It was me and my middle brother, TurtleMan, and me.

It was boring. I never laughed one time.

I can't believe that. They made it seem so great on the commercials.They said, "Have you heard what they say about MegaMind? Hilarious!" And I think what I didn't like about it was I didn't like the bad superhero, Tighton. He was mean.


And it's almost Christmas. Next week I'm going to teach your kids how to make sure you get what you want on your Christmas List. There's a trick to it.

Bye. Did you get your kids something for St. Nick's? We had hot cocoa and candy canes stirred and melted into it.

A VERY special THANK YOU! to Dana  @Bungalow '56  and her wonderfully wonderful eldest daughter  for the "cleaner" look on this blog today. They eliminated the plane that had automatically come with the background design--and that drove me nuts--"Off with it's head!"

Thank you, to you both, for all the "little" things you did that make this blog look so much better.  

I know such awesomeness because of blogging.

Thank you, sweet ladies. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Oh, Doctor....Are You Sure You Cut The Cord?

Alexander, on his 1st birthday
I can't even look at this picture today, without my throat getting tight on me. It's a picture of my now oldest, who was one on the day this picture was snapped. He is 15 now.

I had dressed him in his first grown up clothes that day: a navy blue polo shirt and pleated, pressed khaki pants. He looked just like his dad, and his dad was beaming. I was beaming at finally having my baby, at 36 years old.

Looking at my three boys' baby pictures kills me, anyway--I don't know why I do it---torture myself that way, but, I do. Anyway, today...this picture is killing me.

Since the first second I became their mother, I was transformed into their very own "Ripley." I was untouchable, unbeatable and nothing stood in my way when protecting my children.

It became what I lived for, without question, and I rose up to meet my role. When they cried at night, I'd swoop down and lift them and felt as if I were rescuing them from some lonely tower.

They were soothed by only me.

Life continues on this way, with days that trick you into thinking they will never end. You will always be Ripley, you think, armed and ready, to save them from everything.

Then, the day comes, out of nowhere...where the first live superaction heroine they've ever known, is powerless. The day where she can only sit and watch, and is not able to swoop in and pick them up out of their crying crib.

I watch, feeling a golfball in my throat, while my 15 year old firstborn apple of my eye, struggles with a life lesson.*

I can barely stand it.

The Umbilical Cord

Oh, Doctor, are you sure....
     the day he was born and you cut the cord-
     that cord that connects child to mother-
did you make it a clean cut? complete?

Because sometimes I wonder
    when the sound of his cry would cause
     the strange pain, prickly pins,
     "letting down" the milk to meet his need.
     And when, as he advanced to solids and fed with a spoon
     my mouth popped open
     with every attempt to spoon food into his;
     my tongue licked the corners of my mouth
     when the baby food spilled out on his face.

If the cord was cleanly cut, complete
     why the sinking sick stomach in me
     at the sight of his blood after a fall?
     Why is my mouth dry
     when he is the one on stage to say the lines?
     Why are my palms sweating
     when he is the pitcher on the mound?
    *Why does my heart ache 
      when his is broken?

Doctor, could you check?
I think the cord is still intact.

~Jana Vick

PostScript: a HUGE thank you to Shell @Things I Can't Say, for writing the perfect post for me to find today. Thank you, Shell. I needed to read just the words you had for me at your site today. Thank you.


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