Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: He's "Talking" Already

I swear mom, I read them all . . . I'll put them back. Later (read: MOM will put them back).

Mom. Enough with the lame hats already. I have a rather attractive head of no hair that I would like to show off to the ladies.

Yo, mom. You know you're in for it, dontcha!?! Turn your back for one second. I dare ya!

Check out more Wordless Wednesday posts!

* * * Click HERE to enter a book giveaway! * * *

Monday, July 28, 2008

I am . . .

I am . . .


short

(or economically packaged)

a little pudgy

(but soft for cuddling)

emotional

(but at least I have a heart)

not that pretty

(but he thinks I'm beautiful)

not that smart

(but he thinks I'm brilliant)

not that funny

(but he laughs at me all the time)



I am not so bad at this . . .

With just a little bit of help.


I am me. Nothing more. Nothing less.


I’m OK with it.


Are you?


Monday, July 21, 2008

They never called . . .

the Swedish Fish people, that is. Maybe one day I'll go to my mailbox and find a bag of those sweet little treats of sugary goodness. One day . . .

I'm swamped. I really am. I finished all the articles due for my new writing gig in record time. I had nearly a week of late nights (or would you call staying up past 2 am early mornings?), but I met the deliverable deadline.

BUT.

I have more work to do. So much so that I should NOT be writing this post. I should be focused on my paying gig (I've gotta save for J's big day--his FIRST birthday. OMG. I'm starting to hyperventilate. Breeeeeaaaatttthhh.).

However, I miss this. I miss just writing. Just sharing stories without an ounce of expectation or obligation. I miss visiting your blogs, reading about your adventures, what your kids are up to, what crazy antics your neighbors are pulling. I miss the pictures. I miss the laughing out loud. I miss shaking my head and saying, "I so get that!"

I'll be back soon . . . until then, I'm forgoing sharing my own stories for awhile so that the time that I do have for the blog world can be spent catching up with you. Gosh, I'm so sweet . . .

**************

Oh, my little man. When will you grow some hair?

Yeah. So what. Go ahead and comment about the socks. I dare ya . . .

Saturday, July 19, 2008

SWEDISH FISH ARE AWESOME!

IOK. I'm MIA. This I know. I have tried to steal a few moments here and there to visit, but I'm swamped. I've been up way past 3 A.M. the better part of the week. Last night, I got all slap happy and played around on Plurk. Bad. Bad. Plurk. All I'm sayin' is what happens in Plurk, stays in Plurk (unless you want to pay me copious amounts of money, maybe I'll spill).

Anyhoo. I'm spent. I'm wiped out. I'm toast. I'm running out of things to say. I have a mess of articles to write, a baby that needs to be played with, a husband that needs attention, and a house that . . .well, forget the house.

When all is back in order, I pick you . . . over the house, anyway.

See y'all soon!!!

Oh, yeah.
SWEDISH FISH by Cadbury Adams is the best candy ever. Yes, I love chocolate. BUT, I adore Swedish Fish. The original Swedish Fish, mind you. Why am I writing this? Seem out of place? Well, I was thinking that maybe if I write about my undying love for SWEDISH FISH, that maybe Cadbury will contact me and shower me with the little red fellas. It's a long shot. But you have to understand my love for SWEDISH FISH in order to understand the lengths to which I will go . . .

Anything happening in your life? Have I missed anything? I'll be back soon, but just in case you have some news (and I know some of you do!), feel free to e-mail me at laskigal AT live DOT com!

*no need to leave a comment . . . just GIVE ME YOUR beauty tip if you haven't already. BTW, Firecracker Mom, I swear I'll get that picture to you. I'm just revving up the hotness.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Mirror, Mirror . . .

Ever have a case of the uglies? Or, the oldies? Yeah, me too. Me lately. It could be due to my "beauty" routine, if you will, which consists of flying out of bed, squeezing into my running shorts, a sports bra (two of them . . . actually) and tank.

Splash water on face, brush teeth, apply moisturizer, put lame little clippies in my hair (it is too short and too long to bother performing any stylistic machinations).



And my hair really is another topic all together . . . quick side note. Right now my hair looks kinda like this:

No. I'm not kidding. It gets worse. About three weeks ago I got a haircut and highlights. Now, I'm sorta new to the whole highlights thing, so I tend to be really conservative with the color. Well, unfortunately, my stylist got to yapping and left the color in my hair too long. When she was done she said, "Oh, its so cute." Which is code for, "Holy hell, what a hot mess." My hair looked as if there was a dozen skunks making out on the top of my head. Albeit little skunks. Yes, you heard right. A skunk org y right on the top of my head! It was THAT bad.

You know, there was a time long, long, long ago that people said I looked a lot like her:

*This is the picture my students used when our school held a Celebrity Look-a-like contest.

I'm not so sure I saw it, but the fact that others did was awfully flattering. Needless to say, I'm not feeling all that good lookin' lately.

How about helping a gal out? Just like my style intervention, I need another one. This time, in the beauty department. I'm fairly low maintenance in the beauty area, but that is all the more reason I need help. My low maintenance needs some maintenance.

I need to find a new eyelash curler, moisturizer, foundation, eye liner, lip liner, face wash, concealer, lip stick, eye shadow, wrinkle eraser, all of it really. What I do have and use is either old (no, not from the 80s! At least not all of it.), outdated (as in so much so it might come back in style again), ineffective, or just plain ugly (I got some lipstick shades that'll make you cringe). Now, I am NOT a big make-up wearer or all that big into a beauty routine, but sometimes a girl needs to take stock. I need to girl it up . . .

So, give it to me. Tell me your MUST have product. The one you just can't live without. The product you buy your sister and best friend because you swear by it. The one that if the manufacturer were to discontinue it you'd buy every last bit of it up and then stalk it on Ebay. If it is green and toxic free, great. If it is full of toxins and is the furthest thing from green but it'll make me look like a major babe, then I'm OK with it.

Oh, and for all of you out there who are considering telling me that you don't really use anything and that you look the way you do naturally, as nature attended . . . go away. I don't want to hear that 'cause, my dears, this face needs work!

Don't worry about reading all the comments for this post. I'm going to post your responses over the weekend. I'm all about giving back!

Um. Hi. What are you waiting for? I'm not getting any younger! Get over to the comments!!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I'm so embarrased and unworthy . . . .

I am embarrassed by this post. And, if any of the people who awarded these to me want to take them back, I'll understand. I deserve it. I started this post back in . . . april. I deserve absolutely NONE of this love. FORGIVE ME!

Beth, our resident farm diva, from Around the Funny Farm gave me this fantabulous award!


I would like to pass this along to Karen at A Day in the Life, the Canadian mom of two super cuties. Her words drip with honesty. And, just so you know, my love for her does not mean we are having an affair . . . so Ian need not worry.

and

Stella, Mountain Momma. I don't think she has any idea how often I read her. I read her like I read a novel. I'm completely drawn in and focused on each and every word. I love hearing about her beautiful children. She is an inspiring, honest, caring, and REAL mom.

and

Krissy, Firecracker Mom. Ok. She makes me laugh. Those of you who read her know this to be true. She is raw. She is honest. BUT, would you believe it isn't just her S EX talk that keeps me interested, it is the fact that she is so up front and honest with who she is--her struggles, her beliefs, her health, her family, her job. She doesn't try to be anyone else. She's just Krissy. The "new age Dr. Ruth."

***

Jules a new (she was new, but since I wrote this FOREVER ago, she's an old friend now) bloggy friend from Just Because passed along the New Blogger with Bling Award! What a great idea! This is for all those newbies "who make you smile, sing, laugh or cry, or those that just need someone to tell them, once in a while, that they are special."

Please swipe this award and help a newer blogger start their bling collection.

I received this award from CC from If Only I had Super Powers--is a brilliant speech pathologist and mom of two children. She writes about every day life, her kiddies (duh), and awesome teaching strategies. Hop on over there and visit her--you won't be sorry!!!


I pass this on to Holly at Anglophile Football Fanatic. Her observations kill me! She has a rather witty way about her (when you're smart, wit apparently just happens ). And, I'm hoping to get an invite to her wedding to Burgh. I've already picked out your gift. By the way, she's giving stuff away, so go and visit already!

and

Pregnantly Plump because I am just addicted to Elvis. Addicted. And, of course because as a mother of a baby boy, I can relate to just about everything she writes.

and

Tara at If Mom Says OK. Her posts are always thought provoking, riveting, and/or touching. She's in my "not to miss" list.

* * *

Kami from Kami Khlopchyk gave me this awesome award. This busy Polish beauty is a mom to two uber cuties and an absolute MUST READ :
I pass this on to . . . well, you.

* The ones who hang out at Twitter (where I drop in occasionally, the commitment phobe I am, after having to scroll back six pages to catch up).

*Those of you who come by within minutes of my posting to leave me a comment. I love the comment, but the fact that you come at all, that is just awesome.

*Those of you who e-mail me, reaching out and trying to make a real connection.

*Those of you who respond to my e-mails (without worrying that I'm a freaky stalker--I swear I'm not . . . for the most part).

*Those of you who make me smile, make my eyes leak, make me go "hmmm," make me choke on my Swedish Fish with laughter.

Yeah, to all of you. You know who you are. Thanks!

Oh, and feel free to pass these awards along or just keep 'em and yank 'em out whenever you're feeling blue.

Now that the housekeeping is done . . . let me just update you on a few other things.

  • I have a contract/freelance writing job. It has been great so far, as long as I can contain the OCD/perfectionist beast, I should be OK.
  • J is teething. We had just one crooked tooth, now it appears we have won the tooth lottery. It has been a joy in the house. Just an utter joy.
  • We bought J this (yeah, I know his birthday is coming up, but I can't help myself):
  • But he only wants to play with these (I could have saved myself $50):

  • J finally got to do this:
I swear he's not high. But I must admit, those were some pretty mean potatoes (if I do say so myself).

NOTE: Not responsible for errors. It is 2 a.m. and I desperately need to push PUBLISH and go to bed. Buy. By . Bye.

Friday, July 11, 2008

PhotoStory Friday: What lies ahead

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

The following photos were taken on the same day. We had a huge storm. Both T and I were wondering how J would take the sound of the heavy rains and crashing thunder. It didn't phase him one bit. He went on playing . . . no worries.


After the clouds parted and sun peaked through, we piled in the car and headed down our old and winding road toward the park.

Both shots are from oddly similar perspectives. I am looking toward J as he makes his way to the end of the tunnel. He is looking to me . . . he is looking ahead. In the second shot, we are also looking ahead as we head for a day in the park with J.

I started thinking about how J showed no fear when the thunder hit. Me. I have fear. I have worries. I had many before he came along, but now, I have many more that often come to rest upon my shoulders.

I wonder what it would be like to look ahead without a worry in the world?

Imagine . . .
Relishing in his two-toothed grin as he makes his way to the end of the tunnel.
Appreciating the vibrant greens after an afternoon downpour.
Smelling the rain as it mists away from the summer heat.
Filling your heart with joy at the sound of his laughter as a family of ducks crosses his path.
Snuggling into a deep sleep, him cuddled in your arms, not a worry in the world.

Looking ahead, but most definitely . . .

Living in the moment.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Single and Loving It . . .

*said with a huge amount of sarcasm*

First off, I'm not single. Secondly, if I were single right now, I would most definitely NOT be loving it.

Why am I writing about this? Well, see, I have this friend . . .

Her name is Carrie. She's single. She's smart. She's independent. She's a total catch. And, she's single. Did I mention that?

Here's the problem. We live in a rather small town. The pickings are slim. And that is being generous. Now, Carrie does not NEED a man, but she wouldn't mind finding her soul mate (who wouldn't?). So, Carrie decided to try the Internet. Why not? It appears that it is the meeting method of choice in today's dating world.

She registered. Took the required tests (tests???). Filled out the personality profiles. Uploaded a cute picture of herself. And, PAID the fee.

She started perusing the profiles of eligible men. Here's a sampling of what she found:

* He's cute. But, he lived too far away (and didn't own a car--could she come pick him up?) Um. No. Gas prices and all.
* He writes well and is really funny. But, wrote that he has "no kids that I know of. Ha ha." Oh, that's a new one.
* He has a nice smile. But, the other two pictures were of him draped over a scantily clad woman while licking her . . . um. Well. licking her.
* He is an principal. But, he can't spell principle (as in his occupation) or any other word that someone with some level of education (you work at a school, buddy) or at the very least SPELL CHECK should be able to spell correctly.
* He has an OBVIOUS comb over. Can you at least TRY? And, we won't even discuss the teeth.
* He's over 250 lbs. (and it wasn't all muscle) but wants his woman to weight 115 or under? Um. Yeah.
* He wants "beer night with the buddies and cuddle nights with the cuties." Cuties? Plural. Um. No.

Wading through the muck of men, she did find a few guys that she felt might be a decent fit. She starts e-mailing, texting, chatting, and finally, the meeting. For the most part, the early dates go OK. Some go better than others. But, none have lasted beyond a few dates so far. And why? Well, we may have pinpointed some of the problems. Actually, Carrie has, but I've been excellent at saying, "OMG, you are so right!!!" So supportive, aren't I?

During the course of Carrie's dating adventures, she's encountered so many MISTAKES that guys make that basically sabotage the promise of anything beyond ONE date. Now, Carrie realizes that she herself has things she needs to work on, but after reviewing this list, you'll see that her mistakes are mere blips compared to the monstrous blunders by these dudes. NOTE: Many of these Carrie encountered, but some I offer up from my own and other friends' experiences.

Instead of listing said infractions, how about I offer up a list of suggestions that single guys might consider laminating and keeping in their wallet.

1. DUDE is a perfectly fine word. But do not use DUDE when trying to romance a girl. Unless, her first name is Dude, then by all means, go ahead.

2. Showers are good. Take them. Do not think you must be sweaty and smelly to prove that you do indeed work out. Oh, and please, brush your teeth. With toothpaste.

3. Do not, under any circumstances, text "miss u already" right after the first date. Creepy, clingy, and lame. Oh, and a sure fire way to cause a major skedaddle.

4. Do not administer a personality test upon first meeting someone. The same goes for taking blood or DNA samples. Leave that for the second date, at least.

5. Do not say something stupid, realize what you said was stupid, and then follow up with "I'm just kidding. " We all know that "I'm just kidding" is code for "Whoa, I said something really stupid, but I don't want to get busted for it." We're smarter than we look. Really. We are.

6. The second date is not the time to go all 25th date-ish. Not taking her out and instead hanging out at your pad watching sports, playing video games, and making midnight runs to Taco Bell (and making her pay for it) are not 2nd date worthy.

7. Do not make her pay under the guise of "forgetting" your wallet. Can you say TACKY. Seriously, we may be all women's lib and all, but we still appreciate a gentleman.

8. Do not meet her friends and then proceed to tell her how hot one of them is. Can you say PLAYER?

9. Do not drunk dial her. Ever. If you do. Lose her number. You'll never, ever hear from her again.

10. When she says she would like to keep your relationship friendly, she is letting you down easy. Do not, and I mean, do not respond with a sly smile and say "What about friends with benefits?" And, then do not add, "Just kidding." (see #5)

11. When she asks you how she looks . . . wait, you are at the beginning of the relationship, the early dates . . . she shouldn't have to ask. You tell her immediately how GREAT she looks. Don't ever say, "You look fine." That is strictly reserved for old married couples. *sniff--like me*

12. Try not to flirt with a girl via text while on a date with another girl. That's just bad.

And, if you are going to do the whole online dating thing, consider the following:

13. Use a recent picture (not one from your senior prom--that happened ten years ago).

14. Don't include a picture with you and another woman licking whipped cream off of your chest while you guzzle a shot (no, I didn't see one like this, but you know it is out there).

15. Do not include pictures of your pets or cars, unless you figure prominently in them or unless you are exceedingly unattractive. In that case, be sure to play close attention to #18.

16. Use spell check.

17. Do not use your profile to just list all the reasons why you are such a loser, why dating stinks, why you hate your ex, why you are taking anti-psychotic meds . . .

18. If you aren't posting a picture of yourself, make your profile stand out with decent grammar and spelling and a bit of unique wit and charm.

19. DO NOT LIE. She will figure out pretty quickly that when you said that you were in the "medical profession" that you are a bed pan salesman and NOT a doctor.

20. If you are dating someone or married, how about NOT posting a profile.

I'm certain you all could add countless other suggestions to this list. Please feel free to do so in the comment section! Carrie needs a laugh and you know there will always be room on that laminated card.

Oddly enough, since having J, I can't help but think of him when he enters into the world of dating. I hope he's a savvy dater. I hope he has fun. I hope he's respectful. And, I HOPE it will be a long, long, long time from now until that first date. Though, with those blue eyes, that grin, and infectious laugh, I may need to laminate his card right away.


Such a flirt . . .


disturbing . . . in a cute kinda way.

***CARRIE made a comment--check out the comment from "anonymous." ***

Friday, July 4, 2008

And Let Freedom Ring . . .

The sound of tireless voices is the price we pay for the right to hear the music of our own opinions. ~Adlai Stevenson, speech, New York City, 28 August 1952

I remember how quiet it was in the very early morning hours. J was only a couple months old. I was awake with him nestled in my lap, his head lying on my thigh, one hand gripping my shirt. It was 1 a.m. Maybe 3 a.m. I'm not sure I ever knew what time it was in those early days.

The only light came from the glow of the monitor. I moved the mouse around as I searched. For what, I was never really sure. . .

Until the early morning hours when I stumbled upon a site written by her. I scrolled down the page. And then another. And another. There were stories of her children. There were pictures of them laughing. She discussed PPD. She told funny anecdotes about her past. She put herself out there and shared her life . . . the good and the not so good. Although I am certain there were challenges along the way, she struck a balance between being mom, wife, and woman. I admired that.

I had no blog at the time. I barely knew what it was. So, I visited her blog on a regular basis. Never leaving a comment, but thinking genius replies in my head. After doing what I later learned was called "blog hopping," I decided it might be time . . .

In the early morning hours, cradling my newborn in my lap, I realized that blogging appeared to be something more than the words and pictures on a screen. It was freedom. It was a chance to connect across cities, states, countries. It was an opportunity to learn from others and share with others. It was a place where I could . . . just be. The possibilities were endless.

So . . .

I started a blog of my own. I found more blogs. I connected with more people. I was laughing, crying, ranting, and praying with and for these people. I would venture to say that I have even started some real, honest to goodness friendships. And, this former English teacher even gets to indulge in her passion for writing every so often. Of course, let's not forget my inspiration . . . the chubby bald (becoming fuzzier by the day) kid with a crooked tooth and a smile to die for.

My blog is forever a work in progress. I'm not always sure as to what my ultimate purpose is, but I do know that for me it represents far more than words or pictures on a screen. For me, it is a freedom. To connect. To express. To engage. A freedom to be me.

So I ask you, who set you free? Who inspired you (whether they know it or not) to start a blog? What is your ultimate goal when writing your blog? What have been your biggest challenges? And finally, how has writing your blog set you free?

Please take moment and share your responses in the comment section. I'm eager to see how you got started in the blogging world.

*I'm certain there was a meme similar to this floating around. If you did it, leave a comment with the link to that post (if you can find it!) OR if you decide to dedicate a post of your own to this, be sure to let me know so I can read it.


I wish you all a wonderful weekend.

Let freedom ring!

A very big THANK YOU to all those men and women who work to preserve our freedoms every single day.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Rainy Days

. . . and I want to play.


I think I see the sun. Not as many raindrops.
Can we go out, mama? Can we, please?

Photo of the Week

Photo of the Week
Two Peas

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