Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Life's a Bitch and I'm going to be it's Pimp!

Thanks to my cousin for this rockin' quote and how appropriate given I crammed WAY to much into a 4 day workweek. First off I found out yesterday that one of my former students at my old school won an Emmy, yes Bill, a real Emmy through the Student Division of of Television Excellence. He was great student and to hear this years later makes me smile! His poster on Texas V. Johnson made my Best in Show wall of Artwork to this day!

SO this student made me think of my old teaching partner who on my last day gave me the book 50 jobs Worst than Yours. I knew I would love teaching with her when on our first meeting at Cary Lazy Days she was reading Nora Ephron. She is the kind of teacher that kicks your ass she is so hard but one day you will bow at her alter for making you work that hard. So in her honor that her book was foreshadowing for my future here is my top 10 Worst Jobs... including one I added for fun!

1. Maggot Wrangler
2. Nursing Home Entertainer
3. Sadam Hussein Stand In... no longer valid
4. TUSH magazine makeup artist
5. Walking Menu
6. Little Boy Hand Model
7. ratemyvomit.com editor
8. Tiruwka (a eastern European highway sex escort)
9. Midget Tossing Tossee
10. and my favorite... A 10th High School Reunion Stand In. Read the story and tell me you aren't laughing!

Standing my Ground in Parenthood

Yesterday was another "teacher waiting at the door" to speak to me days. Ben even told me as he came to hug me that he had been a bad boy and and hurt his friend.

BUT... that's not the end of Monday Misbehavin'. He also bit a child who messed up his perfectly laid out cards and even worse hit and kicked his teachers when they tried to get him down repeatedly for nap.


Over the last few weeks Ben has started talking back to us telling us, "you be quiet, quit talking" for which he goes to time out for after a warning for not using nice words. If he hits, kicks, or bites us or our dog it is immediate time out. If he gets a bad report from school, no TV for the night.

Bill has started having him repeat this daily mantra in the car just before drop off of "no hitting, no kicking, put on my listening ears". Most days I repeat it on the way home and ask he listened at school and was nice to his friends.

I also asked the director yesterday if he is acting up at nap and obviously keeping others from sleeping if he can come down to her office for a time out before returning. She agreed and we both think this may help more as a scare tactic.

Discipline is one of my biggest downfalls as a parent. Bill and I come from extremes of little/no discipline to physical discipline carried out on routine basis. We have really worked to be a united front and find a happy medium between the extremes.

I didn't give in when we got home (minus our air being out and it being 86 in the house when I got home). We stuck to no TV and instead too the dog for a walk and picked up leaves and sticks along the way and made a picture with them on the deck.

Parenthood kicks my butt in so many ways with discipline being the top of the list. Send me some good thoughts at daycare pick up today. We all need it!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Ed Lover called and wants his shirt back...

Do you remember a time when wearing a yellow and red unitard with your giant feathered hair completed with a whole can of Aqua Net, big ass earnings, and neon green shoes would be the height of fashion? Is your first name Heather, Amber, Melissa, Michelle, Laura, or Jennifer? Can you sing the Facts of Life Theme song and dreamed of living with Jo, Natalie, Tootie, and Blair?

Other than a Salt and Peppa Video circa 1987 you would be laughed out of town to wear any of the choice outfits that were paraded satursday night at the big 80s 35th birthday celebration. This was my chance to remember that every day I used to come home and watch forbidden Yo MTV RAPS staring Dr. Dre and Ed Lover.

What a awesome party filled with good food, yummy cocktails (much better than the Mad Dog/Gatorade combo that was my drink of choice in high school), 80s movies, a round of I Never that resulted in some telling secrets of girls gone wild, and best of all the worst picture contest.

I proudly submitted my Kindergarten photo of my mom's attempt to mix Little House on the Prairie with Princess Lea Hair, my 5th grade girl Scout photo with Senator Strom Thurmond, and my prize-winning "Yes I am A Jeopardy Freak from my High School yearbook". While I didn't win, and as a friend pointed out you really are still a quiz bowl freak in your own way circa 2009, I am happy to say that it was good fun and loved that everyone looks MUCH better today.

Happy Birthday 35th Laura and Jen! I don't know what we will be doing for your 70th but I hope to be around and find out what outrageous parties the nursing home will let us throw without breaking a hip!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Finished For Friday- Awesome Weekend Ahead Edition!

I have been a little MIA from my weekly "what have I gotten done" Friday roundup. Good reason, first spring break, then NCCAT and leaving again next weekend . So given that I have gotten alot done when actually home here's the short list:

1. NHS new member stuff. 110 interested, 67 applications, 29 new members

2. Planted a lettuce bowl and installed a swing for Ben on our glider swing

3. Picked up a play house from my neighbor and put it back together. I helped screw the inside stuff in and filled it with play food and a lounge chair. Looks like a little man lives here.. one that love to slide after a hard day at school.

4. Over 30 items on my school to do list marked off. I'm totally in the VinsonZone as I push to the end of the year with totally checked out kids minus air conditioning. I think the heat is making me manic!

This weekend first on the list is to mow the grass. If not I am going to have to get a goat. Next up is the spring festival at a local park and then the highlight of my weekend.... A 80s themed 35th birthday party for 2 friends Saturday night.

I am so getting my Girls Just Want to Have Fun Vibe on. Not only was this a song my self mantra at age 13 but the BEST slumber party ever movie. What else could my dorky junior high self want: SJP in her post Square Pegs breakout movie debut, a dance contest, great clothes, Helen Hunt as the bad girl best friend, a bitchy rich girl who eats it in the end... and defying your parents.

Believe it or not, I don't own this movie, so I will have to sooth my soul with a tackiest picture contest, Ouija board magic, OTHER bad 80s movies, party games, and oh yes... alcohol.

I am starting a dance contest even if I am alone in this adventure... Let's hear it for anything from Prince's 1984 Purple Rain album or the Best of Kajagoogoo.

Going to be totally groovox, so very, and I better motor if I plan to get all my jelly bracelets and parachute pants on in time.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Confession of a Confessions Junkie

So I could confess to many, many things like my my love of barbecue pork rinds that I only let myself eat on vacation or that I have NEVER seen an episode of Friends.

No, instead my confession is that I think I have a growing obsession with other's train wreck lives as brought to me on TV and in books. Case in point the last 3 books I have read: Magical Thinking and Possible Side Effects both by Augusten Burroughs and Look Me in the Eye by his brother John Elder Robinson. Couple this with the fact I just saw David Sedaris again live and I think I am proving my own point.

I really didn't plan to read these 3 books back to back but I had put them in my queue at the library and all of them came in just before spring break. The thing is that I can read both Burroughs or Sedaris really quickly as most stories are in short story format, perfect for someone like me who can change topics in a conversation like a schizophrenic on a day pass. Both authors are classified satire or more suitably "trashy memoir writers."

So back to why I would push little kids out of the way at Barnes and Noble at the next book release for either author's next collection of the absurd? At times reading their achingly funny work is like watching The Office or Curb Your Enthusiasm. It's hard not to cringe at the level of intense personal memories, even if embellished.

I cannot imagine writing about stopping up a toilet at a party and then being caught throwing the evidence out a window(Sedaris). I about ran off the road laughing at a Burroughs story about a character names Druggie Debbie that kept poster sized hard core pornographic images superimposed with safe driving messages in her back seat and used them whenever she was cut off. But, his next story about giving his dog away to the ASPCA as he could barley function as an alcoholic much less a pet owner was tragic and deplorable.

In either case the mix of hytariclly funny stories paired with stories that reveal dysfunctional families, addiction, struggles to accept sexual orientation make for some addictive reading on my part.

So in that vain... Hi My Name is Heather and I am a Confessions Junkie. Don't let me near a TV with Celebrity Rehab on or I won't be leaving the house for a while.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

File this under, Going to wish I hadn't let him do this

I should have just gone on home as I was the last parent picking up their child yesterday after racing home from Chapel Hill appointment in 5 o'clock traffic.

BUT... I decided to pick up a couple of items from the store. This turned into a full on grocery run as I was half way to getting the last week of my gas card giveaway within 10 minutes into the store. Ben was begging to ride on the end of the cart and I CAVED and let him. He actually did well and stayed on most of the time until he decided that riding under the cart was more fun. I let him put all the items in the cart as we counted them to keep him happy along with free samples.

I couldn't help but remember a zillion times going to the grocery with my mom and brother and fighting over who would get the choice spot hanging off the cart to the 2nd place under the cart with legs hanging off dragging the floor. I can't believe my mom even let us go and typically bribed us with the horrible nasty cookies that looked like crap in the deli. Needless to say we NEVER were good enough by the end of the trip to get cookies, but now I'm a parent I understand the merits of bribery. Yesterday it was a trip to the library in exchange for sitting on the potty.

On a super, awesome positive note I have saved almost 450.00 with a local loyalty program at the grocery and another 125.00 in CVS bucks. Way more than enough to buy a refurbished i-phone!!! Bill didn't even have to talk me into it, I was sold the first time I used his! The 1st application I am going to get is a grocery list reminder.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Open Mouth... Insert Whole Lower Half of Body

If I have a history of anything, it's finding myself in embarrassing situations.

Like on my first date with Bill when I fell into a bush as he walked me back to my sorority house (no drinking involved on this night) and he had to pull me out.

Or, that I fell down on the way to the same class and walked in soaking wet. Once from an unfortunate incident with a mop and the other I fell and rolled, yes rolled down a hill in the commuter lot.

Why would you still go the class one might ask? I was in the Dr.Shepard Fan club and would have attended class with appendages hanging. Plus as I was footing the bill I knew the cost per class.

I digress, but I add yesterday's unfortunate incident to the running tally. As I walked back to find one of the guidance counselors I literally ran into my old Principal (who is now high up in the school food chain). He opens the door from my current principa's office and I walk directly into him. Realizing he knows me and always gives these grandma-like hugs, he proceeds to exclaim my name and hug me. As he pulls away, my shirt catches on his cuff link and starts to pull my sleeve halfway down exposing a huge chunk of bra.

In typical Vinson fashion I throw out some stupid comment and try to change the subject... "So would you believe Ben is almost 3" as I grab my nametag to show him the back side with Ben's photo. "He looks so much like you"... he comments to which I not thinking reply, "really, most people think he looks like his dad"... I continue going and add, "I mean he could be the postman's son he so doesn't look like me."

Not the best of comments as the meaning could be interpreted SO many horrible ways. I attempt to slop some southern sugar and fawn on about how good it is to see him... while dying a thousand deaths.

As I walk back up the stairs I replay the whole thing and wish the floor would swallow me up... but alas the day is not over and I trip and fall in my last class landing into two students. One is a football player but the other some little girl who weights no more 100lbs. I think I may have hurt her, and will HAVE to read her next essay with an open mind in repayment.

I'm taking bets if tomorrow I can top today by dropping the F Bomb while teaching. Maybe if I am lucky I can flash someone while doing lunch duty!

Monday, April 20, 2009

10 Years of Triangle Livin'

Happy "we moved here 10 years ago" today. While I don't think Hallmark makes a card for this (although I have some freaky obsession with all the orphan cards.. like the one card they have in Sanskrit), it goes without saying that our move to the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area 10 years ago has seen many events and the longest place we have lived together. Bill and I were talking last night about the highs and lows... here's a snapshot.

1999- Bill moves up on 4/20/99, I follow Memorial Day weekend since I stay behind to help with my mom's knee surgery and recoop. Bill takes a transfer with his job to Greensboro contract and I take a temp job that turns into a permanent job at UNC-Chapel Hill Hospitals We have an apartment in Cary. We spend most of the rest of the year learning a new place and working. Y2K madness!

2000- Bill moves off the Greensboro contract and onto to one at RTP. I leave my job and start a Masters program at UNC School of Education. Finally feel were are settling in making friends and learning the area. Still getting confused on the inner-outer beltline!

2001- A REALLY HARD YEAR! Finish Masters, PCOS diagnosis, 1st year teaching posit on 45 minutes away in a rural school district, Bill layoff in Oct, my dad is in the hospital more days that at home in 2001 so I am constantly on the road and passes away on New Years Eve. Ready for a New Year!

2002- My mom has more surgery due to a broken femur and hip so the early part of the year is again spent on the road many a weekend. Bill starts at a small start up in July where he makes friends with people we still know now, we buy our 1st house and get a dog. MUCH better year by mid-year and are very thankful.

2003- My mom goes into the ICU on my birthday in January and is in the hospital until March... lots of time on the road again, move to a new school district and new school that opens up alot of opportunities that fall, Bill moves up quickly in his job and we go to VEGAS for the first time and plan many a return trip!

2004- Year of many changes! Gastric Bypass in June, Bill laid off two weeks later but finds a contracting job same month so his time off is with my recoop. Feel like the whole year was pre-opp and post-opp related visits to Duke.

CRAZY YEAR! We both turn 30 and make the decision to start trying for a baby once I am close to one year out from surgery, get pregnant in Vegas but miscarry in July, get pregnant again with Ben in Sept!!! Bill moves to another IT company sometime that year and I am working on National Boards, writing curriculum for the state and then presenting it at conferences within the state.

2006-A Year of Anticipation- Announce we are pregnant at a New Year's Eve party we host for friends, get remarried for our 10th wedding anniversary in Vegas in Feb, finish National Boards, interview and get my current position to help open a new high school in August that is 5 minutes away from our home, BEN arrives on June 9th!!! New baby bliss and fuzziness for the rest of the year!

2007- Really hard year juggling work and parenthood no major events other than loving our new family of 3! Frankly I don't remember much of this year!

2008- Really good year filled with many family trips, a growing and bounding boy, we make the decision over the summer to starting not trying/trying for a 2nd baby

OBAMA inauguration on my birthday weekend to kick off the year, decisions about babies and jobs seem to be dominating the current landscape. We are both hoping that the year will end as well as it began.

Happy 10 years in one place and all that will happen in the next 10!

Friday, April 17, 2009


Made the trip to NCCAT in the usual long 5 hours, but wow-o-wow what a beautiful day to drive with the sunroof open and yet another audiobook. I have been saving this one for this trip. Post definitely coming next week... already have the title, "Confession of a Confessions Junkie".

So this is really hard to know that as of August this cohort of teachers are breaking up. What was suppose to be a 2 year commitment is ending a year early due to state budget cuts.

The Director of the whole program came down to talk to us and address some of the very heated comments that have been exchanged. The prognosis for the whole program is not good and may be cut completely and the property sold to Western Carolina University. This hurts. I know and can vouch for how much being here first for a full week in 2007 and now as part of a close group of teachers has validated me as a teacher and encouraged me to take time to write and create art (if you want to call it that!) Both are something I love to do but never take time to do.

Our opening session always starts with a general check in. You can imagine the amount of lay-offs and negative impact the economy is having, but to hear it from person after person was really hard to hear.

I am not the most, "hey I don't really know you so let me tell you about my life"... Some people are in this group are, and for their openess I respect them. Every time I have come here I am asked to serve on someone's "clearness committee". Basically, got something pressing and want an independent take by other group members? I don't know what this says that I keep getting asked by others to participate, but just as being empathetic to my students this falls under the same reason why I think I do this job. Teaching can be a lonely and isolating job and if you have never thought yourself a fraud.. then you surely are not the real thing.

My late-night art partner Kim is not here this trip, but I feel a second wind coming on and will likely work until at least midnight on some open projects. Give me a room of art supplies and I'll show you a happy Heather....

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Backseat Funny...

and a NOT so fun week of behavior from Ben.


Ben: I like firetrucks...look daddy 2 firetrucks... they my favorite...

Bill: I like firetrucks too, Ben

Ben: Firetrucks are my swishy pants... they my favorite. I go see mommy.

not so funny...

Ben: I hit you mommy... I hitting you with my shoes.

Heather: Ouch!
that hurt as I am pelted in the back of the head while driving with his shoes as he is laughing. I swerve and pull off.

I get out and open his door. I am so mad I really want to smack him, but I don't. I close the door and stand there for what feels like 5 minutes trying to pull it together.

Heather: Grabbing flailing arms and kicking legs. Ben you hurt mommy. You NEVER hurt mommy. We DO NOT throw anything at mommy in the care... of EVER! Are you sorry?

Ben: laughing.. NO.. I hit you... laugh, laugh, laugh

Heather: You are in time out in the car and no TV when we get home.

Ben: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO I want Kai-Lan... I want Ho-Ho I not like you mommy

Heather: Gets back in the car and gets home pulling the silent treatment to a screaming Ben about missing freakin' Ho-Ho.

Bedtime is another showdown now including Bill. Try to give him a big bear hug to control the kicking and hiding under his bed.. no such luck to get him to listen

Bill: Get in the bed.. we are done for the night.

Bill and Heather almost simultaneously once out of the room: How much do we really, really want to do this again..

Checking on Ben before I go to bed to Bill: Worth it, even for days like these

What Ya Doing at 4:45am?

I have started working out at this ungodly hour! So the backstory for this madness is that my 5 year surgery anniversary is coming up on June 30th and I really want to be as close as I can to my original goal to celebrate. Plus we are starting IVF in June and the injectables are notorious for adding swelling and weight. There's a "starting IVF post" rolling around in my head, but it just hasn't found it's way to being published yet.

While on vacation in Florida I drank and ate foods I shouldn't and REALLY felt it with spiked insulin levels. I physically feel bad and after seeing some of the pics, and needed a catalyst to motivate me. Plus, I'm super vain that I have tons of cute spring skirts I want to be able to wear.

So..I am reverting back to the main way I took off weight before mega amounts of exercise and cutting out as much simple sugar as I can. As always I set up rules to keep myself on track:

1. Any day I know I can't get to the Gym, workout on the elliptical at 4:45-5:30
2. Change up what I do at the gym and work with the trainer for some new weight lifting exercises plus try to add one class
3. Take the stairs all the time at school. No excuses even if I have stuff to carry. 87 steps to my room and I estimate I take them at least 3-4 times a day.
4. Walk the dog once Ben is in bed, no matter how tired I am.

Waking up at 4:45 is giving me a major burst of energy to start the day. Since starting on Monday I had time to eat bfast at home AND made it to school on time!

Wish me luck... I am one determined chica and this is a positive way to channel my energy and nervousness about starting IVF.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Silver Lining on Tax Day

Aside from today being a day we kiss our hard earned $$$ away, today is also National Financial Literacy Day. Financial literacy should be a high school graduation requirement, and I could not be more pleased to have had the chance to develop curriculum for FL that is used throughout my state. It was/is a highlight as my time as a teacher and validation to do this job day after day.

I am really excited that I have managed to add an extra week to my economics unit that starts Monday. My kids participate in a "mock life" unit in which my kids have to 40 economic tasks like filing taxes with dummy W-2s and schedules, live on a budget, getting a loan all on the national average national salary of 36k.

This year I am also having the kids download the now Peabody award winning TAL episode "Giant Pool of Money" as well as a choice of recent Plant Money podcasts as part of the assignment. Yesterday they posted a great piece about the impact of budget cuts on schools and how teens are being pushed out of the job market due to the influx of older adults also looking for work.

Can I tell you how excited I am to hopefully be bringing them into the fold and teaching some real life skills to transcend graduation. This is so worth getting out of bed for in the morning!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

McDonalds Musings

On our way home from Florida last week we had 2 outstanding lunch options. I really didn't want to stop in the multitude of one blinker light towns like OZARK, LUVERN, and ARAB, but I needed gas and Ben needed to be out of the car.

Since the choice was between fast food and a local barbeque joint called The Big H Chicken Buffet that advertised "best butt in town." I am hoping this referred to barbeque! Thinking this was a choice of the lesser or 2 evils I went with McDonald's. This place was old... I mean they still had the Hamburgler... complete with a missing face and only one stripe on his shirt on the equipment and a big Grimace punch out doll that I am sure had been crying in the corner of the playground before our arrival.

We got lunch and sat outside to eat and play. As we were leaving and Ben was getting in the car this lady comes up and says, "how's that hope and change workin' for you girl?" WHAT? Come again... I think your bias might be showing LADY I thought. "Yeah... where you get that Obama shirt your little one is wearing?"

I was stunned and didn't really know what to say. So I replied, "I got his shirt at the inauguration and yes I support our President if that's what you were asking."

Could I have said more... oh yes... by why? It wasn't like it would change her mind. I was more offended that throughout the entire conversation she was blowing smoke in the faces of the kids in tow with her.

The reality is that in Obama's first 100 days he has shown that he has taken action and is trying to deliver to the American public. Personally I find his take on closing GITMO, attempts to restart the economy, and his reversal of a 8 year policy on stem cell research in line with my vote.

Anyone thinking that come Jan 21st all would be solved was surely mistaken. Who in their right mind would want his job? Look at it this way, if midterms is the barometer on Presidential approval, here's your chance to voice your opinion. I would think it would be much more effective that accosting some stranger in a parking lot in rural Alabama.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Bunny Cake and Inappropriate Easter Behavior

For some reason having egg hunts not only in Florida multiple times, one in our hotel room (I was desperate for Ben to leave the room alone while I unpacked), and several more yesterday... Easter is not the same without BUNNY CAKE!!!

I totally played it up all morning once I got home from church, over brunch at Mimi's Cafe, in the grocery store and finally to get Ben to agree to a nap.

Ben helped mix and pour the batter. Mommy cut out the ears and bow tie and frosted the monster bunny while he napped and then Ben helped pour (and smash) Jelly Beans all over. I forgot to get writing frosting so we went with Plan B... Jelly Beans.

We shared our cake yesterday with a friend that came over to hide eggs and plan to take the rest to school tomorrow for our class to enjoy because what do preschoolers on picture day need but MORE SUGAR!!!

Ben has told everyone... I mean everyone... from the pharmacy tech to my principal today that he made a bunny cake. Yeah... he is going to be the king of the class tomorrow!

So while I did uphold my Lent promise to attend church weekly. I think I blew any and ALL potential favor with God last night by watching SexDrive with Bill. If you are thinking... porn on Easter... for shame... it wasn't porn, but rather one of the worst movies I've seen in a long time. By worst, I mean I am ashamed to say how much I laughed at this American Pie/Road Trip/Harold and Kumar knock off.

Think of the much not-seen Dane Cook movie Waiting if you want to compare to another jem of cinamatic biss. I'll top you to say the Vinson's OWN and have watched it multiple times. Bill has been talking about SexDrive since he "missed" it when it came out. I think it was only in theaters about a week before being canned to DVD. You know I LOVE Bill when I turn down watching a new episode of In Treatment so I can watch a talking doughnut.

So... in honor of the risen Lord I hope he can find time to forvige me once again for sinking to a new low on Easter. At least I didn't gorge myself on bunny cake while wathcing.

Friday, April 10, 2009

I think I listened to enough NPR to sponsor my own pledge drive!

After 8 hours of driving in heavy rain today plus a flat tire... we are HOME!

We had a awesome trip, even today in the rain Ben was quite the traveler even without a nap today. His sad little voice kept saying, "mommy... I want to go home and see my daddy." Me too, honey.

Here's our journey in pictures of our week long adventure.

Friday-Meet up for a late dinner on the road with Brian and my mom

- Marathon driving day. Met up with old college roommates along the way. What should have been 8 hours turned into 13 due to wrecks, Atlanta traffic, and the Eufala, AL Old South Promenade (since traffic was at a standstill I snapped this pic out the window) Will the South just let me by before it rises again?

- Overcast and cold in FL... hit the outlets for the motherload of "swishy" wind pants, Ann Taylor, and Stride Rite. Hit the Alys Beach Playground with Uncle Jamie (mini Bill)

Monday/Tuesday- Uncle RG and Lyn came down to join us. Big cook out by the pool. Easter egg hunt, lots of tricycle riding, fun day with inflatables and riding the train, mommy escapes a couple of hours alone at the beach both daysWed- Played goofy golf at the same course Grandmommy Pam and daddy did years ago. Ice cream galore and flew a kite. We are SO playing put put again as Ben loved swinging his club and chasing all the balls (including some other patrons) Afternoon at the pool and mommy escaped for one last afternoon of alone bliss!

Thurs- Start the drive home. Beautiful sunny day, sat in the sun for lunch, and finally made it to Atlanta. Spent the night with family. Nothing like 2 boys under 3 and a 3rd on it's way to make for a wild little penis-filled night!

- Make it the rest of the way home. Met up with an old high school friend for lunch. Wish I had a picture but you can imagine trying to get 3 kids all looking the same way!

By the Numbers.... 1643 miles, 2 visits to cracker barrel, 2 1/2 books finished... totally cheated on my 22 hour audiobook of The Corrections and listened to the last 2disks to hear how it ended, 2 inches of goldfish and crayons in the floorboard, 1 rotten preschooler brain from hours of watching the dvd... think he wanted to watch anything but Kai-Lan... hell no... I swear I could repeat ho ho's lines by the Alabama state line.

All in all great trip and so ready to head back in August.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Ben's Perfect Vacation Day vs. Mommy's

Greeting from sunny Florida. After a marathon 13 hour trip down on Sat we are livin' large with the in-laws at their home in Destin. A big picture post is coming once we get home, but I couldn't resist a check-in post. Plus I promised Bill tonight I would share some photos from our super, awesome day.

Today HAS to be Ben's perfect vacation day:

Trip to the Alys beach playground
Breakfast by the pool
Local shopping center had a bunch of inflatables,carousel, and a train operating for spring break (do drunken teens really WANT a rock wall I pondered)
Lunch of 5 guys burgers and fries, and ice cream for dessert
Got a monster truck from uncle jamie
Had an easter egg hunt in the front yard
Ate a chocolate truck for dessert
Played with mommy's car flashlight (bribery to stay in my sleeping bag)

By comparison, Mommy's perfect day was not similar in ANY way except one...she got to spend it with Ben! While he was taking a nap she escaped to Rosemary Beach to this little wine/cheese bar she discovered the last day here in August and swore to return to... alone.

Mommy had her favorite meal in the world... a cheese plate and a glass of Riesling while she read yet another book by Augusten Burroughs. Too bad no one could fully appreciate her laughing out loud at his recount of attending Barbazon School of Modeling. She then took a really long walk on the beach and then drove home with music blaring out of her car with all the windows down. She is about to get in the hot tub with a drink and a box of girl scout cookies.

It's official folks, we are on vacation....

Friday, April 3, 2009

Finished for Friday- Spring Break Edition!

I showed up this morning to work with no school bag, just lunch, wearing flip flops 2minutes before the bell. That my friends is "phoning it in to the extreme." In typical fashion I over scheduled myself to the point this week that I actually fell asleep in class yesterday. So on that note, I am happy I got alot done, but NOT happy to be starting this trip already exhausted.

This week I got the following done:

1. General Trip Readiness! Thank God for DVD players! Bill picked up Ben's new favorite show Kai Lan so I can enjoy Ho Ho and his beat box mixes for 17 hours. I even made brownies for Bill's night of video gaming with friends. I told him that they needed to clean up any evidence if the hookers come over!

2. Met with the Harris Lake park ranger to plan our last NHS fundraiser in May.

3. Intake of new member NHS applications. 66 potential new members. Much more to come, but these 10 page a piece applications are NOT going with me to Florida. I am finishing 2 books, not letters of service and leadership by the pool.

4. Tons of grading of midterm exams and finishing quarter grades. I just love our school's late policy. Kids have essentially the entire quarter to turn in late work and I get one week to grade it all. Seem fair?

On that note, PLEASE 2:30 pm get here so I can get in the car and get rolling towards Destin, Florida! I hope by 6 pm tomorrow night to be sitting by the pool with drink in hand!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Yeah.. I Get You Star

While I was at the nail place yesterday I noticed that Oprah was on. I HATE Oprah for the most part and agree with Bill she is a media whore always looking for a shameless self promotion outlet. Today she had on celebrity weight loss stories and most of the hour was interviewing Star Jones.

I really don't like Star either, nor do I watch/like the View. But, as a fellow sister in the gastric bypass journey I felt compelled to watch and by the end I was about to scream at the TV (I didn't as the owner of the salon I'm sure would have sent me away)... "YES honey I so understand your need for privacy and why you didn't tell anyone how you lost your weight".

Did she/I sell out our authentic selves by not being totally honest as we both lost well over 100 lbs within a year time frame. I guess if you want to pass judgement, it's your call. But I would ask you to live my life as someone who was not someone who needed to loose a little weight, but someone who was morbidly obese and whose life quality was slipping away.

I could have written her script on why she didn't feel the need to be the poster child for a surgery that many people feel is an easy fix. Personally I had almost a year of pre-surgery consultations, icky testing, and evaluations to see if I could truly make a major life change. Only 4 people knew what was going pre/post surgery and I choose not to tell our families until well after.

It seemed one of those times I really didn't want or need someone all in my business. I am very grateful to my program that didn't just drop me off at the door after the surgery but required me to keep coming back, even when the last place I wanted to be was surrounded by fellow fatties.

June 2009 will mark 5 years since I had surgery and I would do it over again without question. Even with a long, hard recovery and pregnancy complications I am not the same person I was before. The last thing Star said today was, ""Do I regret not being strong enough to share everything right away? Yes," "But would I take it back? No, because I'm healthy here today. I got emotionally strong while I got physically strong."

Well said from someone who has been there.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Ben's Bridge To Nowhere!

Bill sent me this picture of Ben's bed. It appears my OCD son told Bill when he woke up, "I build bridge daddy". Better than an earlier announcement, "I want to be a princess". Yes, my almost 3 year old son is still in a crib and yes I know that likely I am doing some type of psychological damage to him. I admit it I have just been really lazy on this one.

Ben sleeps upstairs and our master is down. The idea of a sleepy preschooler roaming the upstairs in search of mischief had not been in the cards. We are moving him over the summer and our upcoming trip to Florida is a trial run for sleeping in a big boy bed. On a super-duper note Ben pooped in the school potty yesterday!

I am also super excited about the new outdoor play stuff we got from a neighbor that is moving. We now have a basketball goal and playhouse for the summer. If you listen closely you can hear me squealing in excitement for Ben's sake as well as mine!