Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Watching it now? Um... wow.
Here's an excerpt from the very first song in the movie:
Gonna snag him, gag him, drag him through town
Put his head in the river, let the pup drown,
Trap him, strap him, wrap him in a sack. Yeah!
Tie him screaming to a railroad track.
...Gonna paw him, claw him, saw him in half,
When he cries out for mercy we'll just laugh,
Beat him, heat him, eat him for dessert. Yeah!
Roast him gently so the flames won't hurt.
Yes. You read that correctly. They are talking about maiming and killing poor Petey.
And the Dark Crystal? One of my favorite movies of all time. Yes, I am that weird. But again, that's not the point. I would not let Alanna watch that until she was a few years older. It was another one of the movies I watched around 7-8 years old (of course, I also watched movies like Terminator and Predator... cuz I was that cool) that I just think is WAY too scary for her. Not to mention Lydia.
I mean really... if you were between the ages of 2-7 and you saw something like this:
...would it give you nightmares?
This is the bad guy in one of Alanna's favorite movies, Quest for Camelot:
Tame by comparison right?
It's so weird to put in the movies I watched as a kid and then have to worry about whether or not I should keep them playing because I'm worried about what it's going to do to my kiddos.
Another one of my favorite movies that I would not let my kids watch now, Legend, was rated PG in the US (G in Ireland).
Yeah, would not stick that one in the DVD player now. Of course, it's still one of my favorite movies... it's even where I got the FIRST name that I had chosen for my youngest. But was overruled in the end. Lydia's just as pretty though. Anyways, I wanted to name her Oona. And I almost won, but... well... nevermind.
A lot has changed since I was a little person.
What are some movies you loved that you might not want your kiddos to watch until they're older?
Thursday, July 22, 2010
And then recently I realized (please don't laugh at me because it took me this long) that Miley and the Jonas Brothers and Justin.... they're the "modern day" equivalent of Nsync, Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys.....
::sigh:: I know when I'm defeated. I do.
I used to LOVE LOVE LOVE watching the Mickey Mouse Club because I thought Justin Timberlake was SO STINKIN HOT. I even went and saw 2 Nsync concerts, bought a Hanson video tape for their Middle of Nowhere album (ok, I know I'm seriously going to get roasted for that one)...
I'm big enough to admit when I'm wrong.
I watched the Hannah Montana movie...
I didn't hate it.
I mean really is this:
Really that much better than this:
They're kinda the same. Well, not really the same... but are they any less.... teenybopper ish?
Other than the fact that I feel like an old fogey in saying I'm still partial to the music I listened to when I was younger (long live "I Want You Back" and "MmmBop" haha).... there's not a huge difference in music. Just the people. Obviously my models got older and could no longer be considered teenybopper anymore so they had to be replaced.
My parents probably hated Nsync and Hanson just as much as I can't stand Justin Bieber and Jonas brothers (sorry Mom and Dad!). I had my walls covered in Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Mike Vitar, Jonathan Brandis, Brian Austin Green, Taylor Hanson, and Justin Timberlake. I was just as bad as all these tween and teen girls are today. Excuse me while I go hang my head in shame.
Heck, even in my 20s I had a live sized cardboard cut out of Orlando Bloom as Legolas, a poster of him on my wall, and a 12 inch tall motion activated talking Jack Sparrow doll (hey that thing was awesome, you hush).
I guess we've all got a bit of teeny bopper in us. Don't be ashamed, you know you do too. So while you're sitting there thinking of how much you can't stand listening to Miley sing "Party in the USA" just remember how often you replayed "Hit Me Baby One More Time". If you think your ears are going to bleed if you have to hear one more Justin Bieber song (believe me, mine are close) you just have to think of all the times you danced in front of the TV trying to be NSYNC.
Remember the saying? Put yourself in their shoes? You were there already. :-P
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Tips for saving time.
Have you ever gotten up in the morning and you've gotta get your kiddos ready for bed, and they really just don't want to buy lunch? Well, this one's a kind of obvious one. Make their lunch the night before. Pack everything in their lunch box and put it in the fridge. That way, in the morning just pop it in their backpack and send them out the door. Or, drive them to school. Whichever one you do every morning.
Same goes with getting the kids ready in the morning. Have them bathe or shower before bed, and set their clothes out on a chair or in the bathroom. That way they get to sleep a little later so they get more rest, and they don't have to scramble around and search for clothes when they wake up.
Hang your keys on a hook somewhere in your kitchen. Why the kitchen you ask? Just because. As soon as you walk in the door, hang them up. Next time you leave the house you don't have to hunt for the keys, because let's face it, how many people actually think to look for the keys an HOUR before you have to go anywhere? Not me. I don't look for mine until I've walked out the door and realized that I've forgotten them.
When you are making meals at night, make two or three times the amount you're actually going to need. That way you can refrigerate or freeze and serve again later. Saves on cooking time on two or three seperate occasions.
When you're out shopping, if you have a few extra dollars, pick up some scented candles, gift cards, small trinkets. If you need to, buy them with a particular person in mind. Even if that person's birthday or anniversary or whatever - special - date isn't for months. When it DOES roll around, go to wherever you've stashed the gifts, wrap it up, and there ya go. You don't have
to go to the store the day before/of and wonder what in the world you're going to get for them.
If you're in the house alone and trying to clean... turn off your television. But it makes the job go by quicker! No. It doesn't. It distracts you from the job that you are doing and ends up taking much longer than necessary. Listen to music if you have to. That way you're still entertained, but not distracted.
Don't wait until the end of the day to pick up. This one took me a while to figure out. When I was babysitting my nieces, those 2 little girls along with my Alanna could trash a room with toys in NO time flat. If I left the toys on the floor and let them play all day, then tried to clean up after my sister got back... geez... took for ever. But if I picked up the toys they weren't playing with at the time, or, I cleaned up while they were eating, it left less for me to do at the end of the day. Less overwhelming.
Again with cleaning, if you're used to nailing every room every day... kudos to you. If not, pick one room a day. That way the task seems less daunting. Clean the kitchen. Then the living room. Then the bedroom and so on. That way, you only have to maintain the previous ones while you're cleaning the new "room du jour". You're not trying to tackle every single dust bunny in every room in your home all at the same time.
When you go grocery shopping, plan ahead. Not just for what groceries you need to buy, but what meals you're going to make. If you plan meals and then shop for just the items you need to make each meal (plus some snacks, I mean, come on... but plan which snacks will be given on which days). You save money NOT buying food you DONT need and won't eat for however long. And then you don't have to walk UP and DOWN every SINGLE aisle in the grocery store searching for items that may or not be there. You know what you need and can go right for it.
Dishes. Oh how I loathe thee. Start this with an empty dishwasher, obviously. After you use your dishes for whatever meal, immediately rinse them (if your dishwasher SUCKS like mine, if it doesn't ignore step one), and then stick em in the dishwasher. You won't end up with a sinkful of dirty dishes that you don't want to touch, but have to put in the dishwasher all at once.
This one is not a time-saver so much as a money saver (I can't help myself... I get SOOOO many calls from people who pay WAAAAAY too much for calling)... instead of DIALING 411 for phone numbers, send a text message from your cell phone to the number 466453, which is GOOGLE spelled out on a regular keypad, with the "listing. city. state" and you will get a text message BACK with "Listing. Address. Phone Number." Here's the time saver tip (ok, so this one is a money saver one too), if you HAVE to call, and know you're going to have to call back with another number request as soon as you hang up from the first one.... TELL THEM YOU NEED MORE THAN ONE NUMBER. You can ask them up to 3 things per call. AND you can request the info to be sent to your phone in the form of a text message, so you don't have to call again when you forget.
Write down how much time you want to spend on each task each day. And stick with that time frame. Use an oven timer or an egg timer if you have to. But once the timer goes off... STOP. Move on to the next thing. Don't just work for hours non stop (again, trying to do everything all at once). That makes it seem like it's taking up more time and like it's a more difficult task than it really is.
Another one I'm guilty of NOT doing... be organized. "A place for everything and everything in its place." You don't waste time looking for things because you know where it is.
This one kind of goes along with number one. Instead of seperating your laundry by type (shits, jeans, socks) and putting them in their own designated drawers, when you're folding your clothes and putting them away, group them together in outfits.
So there you have it. Some time (and a tad bit 'o money) saving tips. There's no need to always be frazzled and stressed out.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Fancy Nancy books written by Jane O'Connor and illustrated by Robin Preiss Glasser have got to be some of THE CUTEST books I have ever seen. I love the brightly colored illustrations and the adventure in the books. They're totally fun to read (even Lydia likes this one!). In this particular book (it's not a chapter book, oops) Nancy and her friend go exploring. They explore trees, leaves, birds, bugs, wildflowers, and butterflies. And they have a secret clubhouse that is "to die for"! I wish these books had been out when I was little. The website is just as awesome to browse around as the books are to read. Very interactive and fun.
Sophie discovers that giants not only exist, but that there are a great many of them who like to guzzle and swallomp nice little chiddlers. But not the Big Friendly Giant. He and Sophie cook up an ingenious plot to free the world of troggle-humping -- forever.
Like I said, anything by Roald Dahl is a great read. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. James and the Giant Peach. Matilda. All tons of fun to read by yourself and to your little ones! All filled with fun adventures and magic!
Well, there you have it for now. Books for the older kiddies.
But chillens, my tank runneth on empty I fear. I'm about to sputter and die. So I must bid you all, adieu!
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
So, I'm participating in another Dishing It party over at Serenity Now and the topic of this par-tay is "Summer Reading List". Um... hello? Perfect topic for moi considering how much I love to read. WOo.
1. List of top 5 books for summer reading.
-Wow, that's gonna be a hard one... I might have to cheat a little bit.
- Shiver and Linger by Maggie Stiefvater. Absolutely amazing books. I was stupid and read them WAY too fast and now I have to wait a YEAR to read the final installment. I'll give you the summary for Shiver since the 2nd book JUST came out and I don't want to spoil it. "Grace is fascinated by the wolves in the woods behind her house; one yellow-eyed wolf in particular. Every winter, she watches him but every summer, he disappears. Sam leads two lives. In winter, he stays in the frozen woods, with the protection of the pack. In summer, he has a few precious months to be human ...until the cold makes him shift back again. When Grace and Sam finally meet, they realize they can't bear to be apart. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human - or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever." I'm serious. This book made me cry. And books NEVER make me cry.
Here's the book trailer for Shiver. I've already posted the one for the second book, so you should check this one out too.
- Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler. There is another book in this series as well, but I haven't been able to read it yet. Soon though. Very soon. It's humorous and has just about every fantasy creature you could imagine packed in to one book. AND it takes place IN the state that I currently live in. Which is awesome. "Living in small town Rockabill, Maine, Jane True always knew she didn't quite fit in with so-called normal society. During her nightly, clandestine swim in the freezing winter ocean, a grisly find leads Jane to startling revelations about her heritage: she is only half-human. Now, Jane must enter a world filled with supernatural creatures that are terrifying, beautiful and deadly - all of which perfectly describe her new 'friend' Ryu, a gorgeous and powerful vampire. It is a world where nothing can be taken for granted: a dog can heal with a lick; spirits bag your groceries; and whatever you do, never - ever - rub the genie's lamp."
Here's one of Nicole's videos with a short summary of Tempest Rising. It's wicked cute.
- Impossible by Nancy Werlin. I actually read this one quite a while ago. I hadn't really given any thought to the song the story derives it's plot from until I read it. Once I finished though I did some research and it's actually got a really cool "legend" if you will. Completely original concept and I loved reading it. I'll let the trailer for this one speak for itself
- Alanna (and the rest of The Song of the Lioness series, but this is the first) by Tamora Pierce. I'm sure you can figure out why I first picked up the book. Because the title of the book is oddly similar to the name of my oldest child. Ok, so it's exactly the same. It ended up being really cool to read. "Noble girls are sent to convents to learn magic, but Alanna wants none of that- her plan is to become Tortall's first Lady Knight. Enlisting the help of her manservant Coram, and the handsome Rogue George Cooper, Alanna dresses as a boy in order to fulfull her quest. In the ensuing training, she will discover many things about herself- her strength, her courage, and her ability to love." And of course, I don't have a trailer for this one, so you'll just have to go read the book.
- This last one was hard to choose, but I had to pick one so... The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephenie Meyer. I liked seeing things from "the dark side". You know... the NOT Edward and Jacob side. "Bree Tanner was a fifteen year old runaway before she became a vampire. Now, a three-month-old vampire, Bree has to find ways to stay alive, to feed without getting caught, and to find the truth about her new life. But Riley, the leader of this gang, is spurring them to war."
2. What genre makes you want to pick up a book and read? Well that's easy. FANTASY!!
3. If you had to be stuck on a desert island with a fictional character, who would you choose? Crap. That's a hard one. Either Sam from Shiver/Linger, Jacob from The Twilight Saga, or..... or..... Devlin from Radiant Shadows.
4. How do I make time to read my books? Sometimes I read on my hour long lunch break at work. Sometimes I read at night before I go to bed. Or when Lydia's occupied watching Noggin.
5. Next on my "to read" list: I am currently reading Fallen by Lauren Kate.
Ok, so I almost stuck to the 5 books only rule. Alas, I have betrayed the rest of my library of fantasy novels (which is kind of puny since my boxes of books are missing from my move back in February :-() But, I shall survive to add more.
So, there you have it. This mommy reads waaaaaaaay too much.
Oh who am I kidding. There can never be too much. And reading keeps me sane. I hope my children carry their love of books through to older ages like their mama did. I don't know what I'd do if they didn't enjoy to read as much as I did.
No... to harsh.
Oh well. :-)
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Saturday, July 10, 2010
LUCKILY I had purchased rubber gloves for dishwashing (yes, because seriously, my dishwasher is HORRIBLE (I've run the dishes that are in there about 5 times, still dirty) and I can't stand touching food that's gotten wet and gross and.... nevermind ::shudders::) and was able to fish them out and deposit them in to a handy dandy Walmart shopping bag just in time to hear....
"Moooooommmmmyyyyyyy..... I have to pooooootttttttty!" Ah, the tired whine mixed with the urgency of a leaking bladder. You gotta love it.
It's the first time she's ever woken herself up in the middle of the night to pee.
And it's been over 2 weeks since she's even wet her diaper at night.
So, after the potty success came the hysterical crying. She was either really tired or... well, I don't know what. And then the... "I'm hungry! I'm hungry! I'm firsty!" Followed by "But I'm scared of my room!" And the killer... "But mommy I want you! PLEASE!"
So I'm a pushover.
She was hungry. She's a picky eater and generally tries to wait until bedtime to decide "Oh yeah, maybe I should have finished my dinner." So, mommy made sandwiches. And we ate them while we finished Harry Potter on HBO. She snuggled up to my side. She likes the fact that I'm squishy. Makes me a comfortable pillow. And the next thing I knew... eyes were closed.
I sat for a minute longer and then....
"Mommy you should sleep too. Like me."
So I close my eyes.
"No! Not like that!"
And then her eyes closed. Again.
She opened them up again long enough to hop back in to bed and say "Good night mommy... I wuv you."
Sometimes it's ok to let them stay up just a little bit longer with you.
And I'll never get tired of hearing "I want my mommy" or "I love you".
Thursday, July 8, 2010
My name is Tara. Which is definitely visible over there on the side of the screen in my short but sweet "profile". I'm 27 years old and I have 2 beautiful little girls. Perfect, glowing little angels. ::cough:: Ahem. What was I saying? Oh yes... little angels.
My oldest is Alanna Noël. She was born in January of 2003 making her a whopping 7.5 right now. Still hard to believe. She's just finished up the first grade and has an affinity for board games like her mama. And loves loves LOVES to watch iCarly, Victorious, Suitet Life On Deck, Big Time Rush, and (this one is totally my fault) America's Next Top Model. She can sing almost word for word every song from Phantom of the Opera (also my fault) and has proclaimed her new favorite movie to be Avatar (do I really even need to own up to this one?). She took ballet and tap for 2.5 years, dabbled in gymnastics, and went and watched jiu jitsu once. She loves to be in the water and acts way too grown up for her own good. Oh, and it's her fault I know all the Barbie songs I sing on a now daily basis. Yep.... alllllll her fault.
Lydia is my second oldest. Also known as my youngest. She will be in just under 2 months and I believe is now completely potty trained. Yay! Anyways. SHE is obsessed with Wow Wow Wubbzy, LazyTown (which I don't mind, because Sportacus is hot), Little Bear, and Barbie. Unlike Alanna, she never really got in to the Disney Princesses all that much, or the Wiggles (and believe me, I was just HEART broken over that one... I don't think I could have "done the monkey" one more time without keeling over). She likes to make towers out of DVDs and toilet paper. LOVES eating yogurt with her finger. Considers cheese a meal (ok, so that's my fault too). And it's always "sing me one more song" when I put her to bed at night.
So, back to me. Yes, I'm that selfish. I work in a T-Mobile call center. And believe me, it is the most stressful job I have ever worked in my entire life. I love the people that I work with, but the people that I have to talk to on the phone? Most of the I can live without. Not everyone has figured out that you get more flies with honey than with vinegar (although, if I was a fly, I'd go for the vinegar, I'm strange like that....just sayin). Most days I dread going in to work, but that could also be because I have a phobia of being on the phone. Seriously. I used to be one of those girls that could talk your ear off for hours. Now? No thanks. You can text me. Picked a great job didn't I?
I'm a nerd. It's still up in the air as to what kind of nerd, but I'd consider myself a book nerd. And a band geek. Even if I haven't played in an actual band since about 2004. I played the clarinet from the time I was 11 to the time I was 21. It used to be one of my aspirations to play in an orchestra. I'm good, but I'm not that good. Marching band was fun though. More fun than I wanted to admit for the longest time, but it was great. Lots of good friends came out of that.
I'm a Christian. I currently attend Faith Evangelical Free Church here and I've never felt like a church was more my home until I found this one. And it wasn't always that way. I didn't start regularly attending church until last August. And believe you me, getting motivated to get up early every Sunday, even if it's to the later service, was HARD. I hadn't been to church more than a few times a YEAR before that since I was probably 19? 20? Can't remember.
Here's the part that people sometimes have trouble reconciling with the bit of information I shared in the last paragraph. I love tattoos. I currently have 8 of them. But every single one of them is special to me and important. They all have a story that goes along with them. Even if it was done as a spur of the moment thing, there's still meaning behind it. My tattoos, in order from my first back in 2001:
Winged Unicorn on my right ankle, Flowers/Ribbon on my lower back, Celtic Shamrock between my shoulder blades, ALANNA (in grafitti) on my ribcage, the world "Forgiven" on my left wrist, a Phoenix on my right shoulder, DogTags (in memory of my older brother, Jeff) on my left foot, and Matthew 11:28-30 and Psalm 34:18 (not the verses themselves, just the reference) on my right wrist.
I have plans for so many more but obviously they are also require paper that has monetary value and I am currently not overflowing with that sort of paper.
I am obsessed with spicy foods and with sour things. I dip buffalo chicken strips in extra buffalo sauce because it's not hot enough without it. I eat ONLY hot and spicy pickles, I have not had a regular dill pickle since.... WAAAAAAAAAAAAY before I had Alanna. I love sour skittles. I will eat the sour skittles and then make sure I get all of the sour-y salt at the bottom of the bag after the skittles are gone. And war heads? Eat em 2 of 3 at a time. Yum.
I read a lot. A LOT. Like I said, I'm a book nerd. I have 10 books at least on my desk at work and have picked up 4 new books in the last 2 weeks (I've already finished 2 of them). I can go through a 600 + book in just a couple days. That's one of the things I love about myself. Is that I can never pass up a good book. Ever. I know people who can't STAND reading and I just cannot fathom the concept of never sitting down and opening up a hardcover or paperback and just reading. Even if it's only for a couple of minutes.
I am not a cat person. I'm a dog person. I've had dogs my entire life. I left behind 4 rottweilers when I moved from VA to ME. And now? I have 2 cats. And I love them. I don't know if I'll ever like anyone else's cats still.... but I love mine. They're names are Vasper (he's about a year and a half old) and Cinderella (she's about 3 monts? maybe a bit less...). They love each other (after a few days of Vasper HATING her and HISSING at her and Cinderella hiding under the sofa until someone came to save her.
I'm not a very good spectator when it comes to sports. I can't stand to watch them on television. But I love to watch them in person. Of course, I'd rather be playing than anything else. I played roller hockey and ice hockey from the age of about 14-23. Greatest sport I've ever played. I've also played softball. Middle school, highschool, and then a church league. I've attempted soccer. I played for a "spoof" team called "Team Combat Boots". We wore red camoflauge jerseys and our team, all but 1 person just about, was made up of roller hockey players who had no idea what they were doing.
I loooooove singing comedians. Heck, I love any comedian who is actually FUNNY. I don't care where they got their stuff from, as long as it makes me laugh when they say it. Stephen Lynch, Jeff Dunham, Dane Cook, Jim Gaffigan, Dimitri Martin, and Red Skelton are some of my absolute FAVORITES. Seriously, anyone who can make me laugh until I cry is a hero in my book.
So yeah, that's my "intro". It's still a little bit abridged. But I figure I've give you all enough information to skip over for now. :-) I'm sure I'll be revealing more in later entries.
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
When I found out I was pregnant with my first child, I was in shock at first.... and then absolutely terrified.
I had never wanted kids. My plan (although it was quite stupid) was to adopt a teenager and then send them off to college. Like I said. Stupid. I did not deal well with children as a general rule. Unless they were family or belonged to good friends of mine, I had little patience for ankle biters.
I still don't do well with a lot of other people's kids, especially unsupervised kids on a playground.... but that's another topic for another day.
Anyways. I was absolutely terrified. I was unmarried and had just turned 19. I was in my 2nd semester of my freshman year in college and was without a doubt the most immature person (even worse than I am now) that you could possibly have ever met. Ok, so maybe that's stretching it a bit. But still... I was not the greatest decision maker (I'm still not, but at least I've got the right thought process down and experience to back it up). Didn't care about anything or anyone really. I had JUST come out from a REALLY bad depression and was still on quite shaky ground.
All the makings of a good mother right? Meh.
I had every reason to be terrified. I didn't know the first thing about being a mother. I'd babysat my nephews, but that was it. I would have NO clue how to take care of a baby. No clue.
Then I joined an email "loop" filled with girls in the same situation or similar situations. And the panic died down a bit. We all shared horror stories and experiences. We fought, we complained, we vented to each other. But what was best was that, even though it was online and we were all hundreds of miles apart, we supported each other. We didn't always agree with each other, but we supported each other.
When I joined that group I felt a little less alone and a little more like I could do this whole "mom" thing.
It's ok to be scared. Everyone has fears/worries/doubts. It's ok to admit that you have ABSOLUTELY no idea what to do. That you're not up on all the hippest trends or you haven't read up on all of the parenting info and what not. You don't have to be supermom the second the little one finds its way down the birthing canal.
Find people like you. Look online. Shoot, facebook now a days has groups for just about EVERYTHING. Go to Cafe Mom and find people that way. Once you know what you're looking for, you begin to notice that there are a WHOLE lot more people in your shoes with you than you ever thought possible. It's also really easy to find people who have been in your shoes and would love to answer any questions or help quiet any concerns that you have.
You don't have to be alone.
It helps to have people to complain about backpain with. It helps to know that you're not the only one with really strange food cravings (for me it was hot and spicy pickles with Alanna, and cheese ravioli with Lydia). It helps to know that OTHER people feel just as terrified and alone as you do. Because while you may not always get along or "feel the love" for each other. You have the support of someone who knows that you're also giving your support for them. You've "got each others' backs" so to speak.
Most of the girls from my email loop are now friends of mine on Facebook.
I "met" them all back in 2002.