Sunday, March 29, 2009

It's Here!

I would like to invite all of you to please head on over to my new blog, Minivans are Hot. It's up and running. It's boring, but don't you worry - it won't stay that way for long. The design is being worked on and should be up and running in the next few weeks. It's gonna be good old sassy fun and I'm really pumped to get everything in order.

In the meantime, I've moved everything over and am busy learning the new software and am just having a good old time. It's a little nostalgic to sign off of Three Times the Love, but I'm very excited to begin the venture at Minivans are Hot!

So stop on by, leave a comment and add me to your reader if you feel so inclined. I look forward to seeing you all over there. Thanks everyone!

Thursday, March 26, 2009


I left Tia and Landon in the living room with some snacks today while I did some work on the computer. When it got very quiet, I decided that I needed to investigate their whereabouts. This is what I found...

While I am not thrilled with the fact that they went outside without asking first (or that Tia found it necessary to try and climb on top of the monkey bars) I love that they are beginning to enjoy one another and play together. It's very sweet to watch their relationship develop.
It's also very sweet that Tia learned this week how to pump her own legs on the swings! YEA! Pushing kids on swings is perhaps one of the most loathsome tasks of motherhood for me. I don't know why, but I just don't like to do it. So I am always ecstatic when they figure that skill out for themselves.
Aaaaannnddd... now Landon is standing under his swing crying because he wants to be pushed. *sigh* Two down, one to go.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

It's coming!

The new site is up and running. I feel like superwoman for figuring out how to set it up! Man, that's empowering. But, I have come to a place where my knowledge of computers has come to a dead halt. I'm really wishing I had taken a computer class at some point in my life.

So the site is up but it has no design whatsoever. I have someone who has offered to design it for me. I'm up in the air about whether to direct traffic over there now, or wait until it's complete. I may wait just a few more days until I figure out all the bells and whistles of the new site, then I'll let you all know. Until then, posts here will be pretty sparse because it's taking some time to get this thing all put together! Thanks for your patience and I can't wait to "see" you at the new site, maybe as early as next week.


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Is It Bad? Part Three

My third installment of Is It Bad? If you feel so inclined, please join me in asking the blogosphere whether or not certain actions/thoughts/desires that you have are bad. If you choose to join in the fun, leave me a comment with a link to your own post, or leave your own Is It Bad? questions in the comments section.

- Is it bad that when I heard we were supposed to get rain today, I immediately began praying that a hail storm would center itself over our house causing just enough damage that the insurance company would pay for a new roof?

- Is it bad that we still have a hole in our roof from a tree branch that fell during the ice storm of 2007? The hole is just through the awning so it doesn't actually come into the house and we have put new shingles over that one spot so it's not really bad that we haven't fixed the roof it?

- Is it bad that I don't buy the "green" movement that's sweeping the nation at all? I'm all for protecting the environment and we are doing our part by using reusable grocery bags (sometimes) and recycling (when we remember) and trying to keep the lights off when we leave a room, etc... But I refuse to feel like some kind of an earth raper by phonies like Al Gore and 90% of Hollywood. Look, I'm not going to make my family start using reusable toliet paper - sorry! Not gonna happen.

- Is it bad that we still have bits of green twine hanging from the top of our minivan from when we bought our Christmas tree in the beginning of December? Yes, we truly are hoosiers.

- Is it bad that every time I decide it's time to reign in my bad eating patterns so I can lose the last few pounds of baby weight, I immediately begin craving chocolate with the ferocity of one who has not eaten in months?

- Is it bad that I usually cave into this craving within about 24 hours and consume more chocolate than should be legal?

- Is it bad that I long to live in Florida yet cringe at the idea of leaving everything wonderful we have here so I constantly live in a state of wishing for something that I wish I didn't wish for?

- Is it bad that the last statement I wrote made no sense and I'm not going to do anything about it?

- Is it bad that I still sometimes think about George Clooney smiling at me and find myself giggling like a little school girl?

- Is it bad that right now I have a few precious hours to get some much needed work done, yet I find myself really wishing that I could return to Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire? I must. be. strong!

Now it's your turn - Have fun!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Sloan on Age

We are gathering everything up to head home tomorrow. There is a great weeping and gnashing of teeth. As Sloan told me tonight, "I hate when we have to go home."

Sloan's had a couple of great quotes this week. Real winners. For your reading enjoyment:

"Mom, you're old like the dinosaurs."


Sloan struck up a conversation with a group of people walking past our condo one day (who's surprised?). This was his introduction:
"Hi. My name is Sloan, I'm five and a half. That's my sister Tia and she's three. There's my brother Landon - he's one. That's my mom - she's thirty, which is, like, pretty old. And that's my dad - he's thirty-five." (I was slightly insulted at being identified as 'pretty old,' but Lee was more insulted given that he's only thirty-four.)

At the beach a couple of nights ago, a young couple walked up with their two young kids. Sloan, of course, approached them with all the boldness and brass of a forty year old.
"Are you their mom?" he asked.
The girl nodded.
"Well, you can't be their mom," he said, "because you're not old like my mom."

In his, and my, defense, this girl literally looked like she was twelve. I doubted her maternity myself. Still, when did I become ancient? Is it because I'm thirty because from what I hear, thirty is the new twenty, which means I'm still in the prime of my youth. No? Yes?

So, I am now in search of the fountain of youth and if any of you know of its whereabouts, I would greatly appreciate your help. Or, I'll take the number of the hottest plastic surgeon in town - whatever, I'm not picky. I'm just old.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Sand and Surf

We are in Florida for the week so updates will be sparse. The weather could not be more beautiful here right now. Sorry St. Louis folk. We are sunburned and enjoying ourselves immensely. The kids have been angelic, which has only deepend my desire to make sure we travel with them as much as possible as they grow up. I love the family time and the togetherness that a vacation provides and because they are such great travellers, there just seems to be no reason why we shouldn't keep this up.

That's my justification and I'm sticking to it!

Today we are going to put the wave runner in the water and spend the day playing in the ocean. There are few places in the world where I feel this relaxed and content. Hope you all enjoy your own spring breaks, wherever you are!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Wooing George Clooney

Yesterday was my day on the set of the movie filming in St. Louis. I had to sign a confidentiality agreement so I can't discuss anything about the movie or what we did, but I will let you all know that George Clooney is indeed as handsome in real life as he is on screen. He looked just like himself, only thinner which proves the myth that the camera really does add ten pounds.

For a short period of time yesterday, I was placed directly in front of George (I call him George now because we're tight). I wasn't ten feet from him so I got a great view of his hotness. He was rehearsing his lines and he looked up. Our eyes met and he nodded with a slight grin. I nodded and smiled back, then I slow motion flipped my hair. Naturally his jaw dropped and he rushed to me and dropped to one knee, gazing adoringly into my eyes.

Okay that last part didn't really happen - well, it happened in my mind but not in real life. We did smile at one another though. We shared a special moment, folks, and I'm quite certain I made a lasting impression. Then the director started shuffling people around and I got shifted farther back, but the connection was still there - I'm sure of it.

At lunch George ate with the crew and his table was just a few feet from mine, so I consider that close enough to be able to say we had lunch together. He was a charming lunch date...

I sat with a really fun group of people while we waited to go on set. We called ourselves the table of random connections because three of us graduated from Lafayette within three years of one another and we all three grew up in the same subdivision (it was a big neighborhood so we never actually met, though I knew one of the guy's sister and he knew my brother). There were other random connections between some of the other people and we had a great time getting to know one another.

In all I would say it was a very fun experience. I'm not sure if I'll make it into the movie or not given where I was seated. You may catch a quick glimpse of the back of my head, which would be fine by me since I was having the worst hair day ever. It was rainy and humid yesterday and my hair frizzed out making me look a little bit like Simba. Even the hair ladies had a hard time trying to get my hair to cooperate. Oh well, at least I won George's heart.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Great Weather and a Great Giveaway

This weekend was amazing. It was unseasonably warm - as in 84 degrees on Friday - and all around perfect. We took full advantage of the lovely weather and soaked in as much Vitamin D as our bodies would allow.

I took the kids to the Zoo on Friday and we just had a blast. They were as angelic as they could have possibly been, which made the trip fun for me too! Landon is at that delightful age where everything is new and exciting. It was magical watching his face light up as he pointed at all the animals in wonder. I loved it. He really enjoyed petting the goats in the Children's Zoo -Until one of the big ones got up and started walking toward him... This was my favorite. He was so fascinated by the animals that he would stand as high on his chubby little toes as he could, craning his neck to catch a glimpse. This is pure sweetness.
We all got a kick out of this guy.Sloan and Tia were respectful and obedient and even nice to one another. It was almost a little disconcerting...
Now - on to the giveaway. If you go to Five Minute for Mom today, you can enter to win four 1 day park hoppers for Disney World! It's easy to enter - just leave them a comment. And you can receive multiple entries if you twitter, facebook or blog about the giveaway. I thought this was a really cool giveaway so I wanted to pass the opportunity along to the rest of you.
I have so much to do today that for me to be sitting at this computer typing out a post is really ridiculous, but what can I say? I'm an addict. Tomorrow is my day to be an extra in the George Clooney film here in town. I have to be downtown at 6 am and will be there 8-12 hours. I'm making a whopping 56.00 bucks! Whoop! I'm excited though. It's all about seizing the moment and this will be a fun life experience. I'm also trying to get us ready to leave town on Thursday. And the kids have russian school this afternoon, plus we have Bible study at our house tonight. Seriously, I have to get off the computer...

Friday, March 6, 2009

Financial Wisdom

Yesterday, Lee came home in a somewhat ominous mood. I could tell he'd been listening to too much talk radio. He told me we needed to sit down this weekend and go through our budget so we could make the "radical" changes necessary to be prepared for the potential crash of our financial system.

I am in agreement that we need to make some decisions regarding how we spend our money. We've already decided that eating out is going to be drastically reduced in our family. When we went through our bank records for the last three months we were ashamed to see how much we had spent on fast food and other frivolous purchases. I've also been trying hard to watch how I spend our money at the grocery store. I still need to get in the habit of making up a weekly menu, but otherwise, I'm doing alright.

But this was something more for Lee. He was fearful. We talked briefly for a few minutes about what exactly he had in mind. First on his list was to cut out cable. I told him I'm fine with that as long as we get ABC because I need to be able to watch LOST. Everything else can go. But what else? We don't have a lot of needless expenses. Gym memberships are perhaps the next thing to go, but I'm not silling to give up on those just yet, especially because we have as inexpensive of a gym plan as possible.

I had really been holding out for a new, fancy cell phone, but told him I'm willing to give that up so there goes that expense. But what else? After our brief conversation, I could tell that Lee felt a little better. I think just knowing that we're both aware of the danger and willing to do what it takes to prepare helps. But I told him, I will not be operating out of fear. I'm not going to slash out every expense because we're afraid of what might happen. I want to be wise, but not fearful. And listening too much to the news or radio can make a person fearful.

It's frustrating to sit back and feel so powerless as the people who are in charge of our country seem to be making poor decision after poor decision. I believe wholeheartedly that being prepared and in control of as much of our income as possible is the best thing we can do. We have to protect ourselves right now. And we have to be prepared for the worst.

But I will not live fearing or expecting the worst. That's no way to live. I will not be confined to my home because I don't want to use gas. I won't live in worry daily over that which I cannot control. And in the moments when fear starts to creep in, I will remind myself that there is One who is Higher and in perfect control of everything in our lives. In Him I take my rest and I find my hope - not in a government who is making poor decisions.

What about you guys? What are you doing to cut back during these days when the financial market teeters on the verge of breakdown? Are you feeling fearful and how do you combat that feeling?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

In the Process

Hey everyone.

I'm in the process of getting the new site set up and ready to go. I have the wonderful Joe McGill working on the design for me and I'm busy learning how to work the new system. It may be a little sparse around here until it's all ready to go but as soon as we're set, I'll let you know! Enjoy your Wednesday. I leave you with these pictures of my sweet Landon who is figuring out how to mug for the camera:

Don't you just want to squeeze him?

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Memo to my husband

To: Lee
From: Your Wife
Re: Two Liter soda bottles and other containers with lids.

My dear, sweet husband. You are a picture of strength. Seriously, you've been working out and it shows - you look fantastic. You look every bit the Greek god. You are chisled from stone. Your strength knows no bounds and I am proud to be your wife.

I love that you are there for me when I need you. I know that at any moment, should I be overwhelmed by, say, a pickle jar, you will swoop to my side, your hair windblown, your muscles flexed and glistening and you will remove the lid with nothing but your thumb and pointer finger because you are just. so. strong. I am the damsel in distress and you, my dear man, are my superhero.

I have but one request, O Ye picture of strength. When you put the tops back on the two liter bottles of Sprite or when you tighten the lids of the kids sippy cups, please remember that us mortals do not possess your strength and try not to tighten them with the force of ten thousand warriors. Thanks so much.

In closing, when you come home today, I will need you to open the bottle of Sprite that you so deftly closed last night. I love you!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Just Call Me The Negotiator

My three year old is fiercly independent. And when I say fiercly, I mean she just may take you out at the knees should you try to help her in any way, shape or form. In some ways, this is awesome. I lay her clothes out and she puts them on (I have not even allowed her to think that she will ever have a chance to pick out her own clothes. Once she decides that she wants that freedom, the battlefield will become much more delicate.)

In general, she does not want you to do anything for her. If you try to carry something, she snatches it. If you try to pick her up, she turns into gumby and slides out of your arms into a puddle on the floor. If you help her without her asking you, well - all I can say is look out.

But being that she's three, there are times when it's clear she needs help. This is where things get touchy. Take this morning, for example. I gave her a shirt with a rather tight collar and she was struggling to get it on. I could hear her screeching in frustration but she absolutely refused help. At times like this, I treat the moment like a hostage situation. Here's how it works:

First, I stand several feet away, speaking in a soothing voice and telling her I'm more than willing to help if she needs it. I'm usually met with a resounding "NO!"

Second, I slowly inch toward her, still speaking softly. Sometimes this works out well and I'm able to help her out before she even knows what's happened. But, other times - like today - this only escalates her frustration and she moves to the hopping and crying phase (I do it myhels! she cries)

Step three is to reach my hands out and, while keeping my voice soft, use firmer words. "Tia, let me help you. It's going to be okay. We'll get this done a lot faster if you just let me help." I have to act fast when it gets to this point otherwise she spooks and runs. I grab her hands and finish the action quickly and smoothly. She usually cries, sometimes screams, which then requires some jail time (i.e. time out in her room).

When she's finally allowed to return to the company of others, she's as pleasant as can be and back to her bouncy self. Until, of course, the next time that help is required, at which point I jump back into the negotiations. I should be getting paid for this.