Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Four Looks Good On You Baby!

Tatum had a big day today.
First, she flipped off her Mama. 

Then she had a snack.
And then...

So, we celebrated.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


On the brink of 2009...

Find ... my happy self, my content self, my zen self.
Pursue ... my passion for love, my passion for friendships, my passion for creating family, and for creating memories.
Believe ... in the beauty and awe of GOD, that dreams are still awaiting me.
Appreciate ... the small and smaller moments, the things which bring me stress may be a gift to another (work, family, etc), the smallness of my children NOW -- they seem so big, but I will look back at their tiny hands and arms and faces and remember just how small they still are.
Trust ... that not knowing the outcome of tomorrow makes me stronger today.
Encourage ... everyone; my children to be whoever they dream to be, my students to follow their own dreams, my family to love big.
Pray ... more intently, more frequently, more meaningfully.  

I'll give more high fives, more smiles, more hugs.
I'll chase dreams, and BELIEVE that they will bring me exactly.where.I.belong.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

2008 Pics

Well, the cards have been sent out.  Some of these made it.  Every November, we do a family shoot.  I make a photo collage for the wall, a sort of Year in Review.  

The day we took these shots was the first day of deciding to grow out Tatum's bangs.  The awkward in-between phase is hard to get through, but if you keep going, you get what you need, right?

Kind of fits my mood right now.

Pretty soon, they'll be too heavy for this one.  You'd think we would have learned our lesson.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Go to the Head of the Class

Does this sweet, sweet child just make you want to melt, or what?  

(Click to enlarge)

And to, it goes.

Monday, December 15, 2008

50 Is The New 40 and 32 is the New ... Where Was I?

Sometimes I worry.  Like about myself.  

I shouldn't do that.  In fact I know I shouldn't do that because I watched The Secret again today.  Negative energy creates more negative energy.  So I gotta get off that.

But really?  Exhibit A:

I was wrapping this gift for my husband today:

When it occurred to me that, it looked vaguely familiar.

Kind of like the one hanging in OUR CLOSET ALREADY?

He also reminded me that upon noticing his "Lucky" jeans yesterday, I said, "Hey, when did you get those?  I like those jeans."  

Apparently, not only has he had them for months, but I also asked him the exact same question, in the exact same way a few weeks ago.  No recollection.

I commented on a blog post recently.  A birthday post.  I truly thought, Wow Happy Birthday Friend.  Then, I went back today, and commented on the same post, never knowing I had seen it before, let alone commented.

I dunno.  I remember strange things, dreams for example, with such vivid color and clarity.

Then, other days...

Exhibit, what am I on, Exhibit D?  Patrick and I had a night out recently, last weekend I think.  We checked into a hotel.  The Bourne Ultimatum was on.  I plopped on the bed and was enthralled with one of my favorite series.  I LOVE these movies.

Only, this time...I couldn't remember it.  None of it.  Not just the ending.  But the parts in between.  "We saw this together," Patrick told me.  I kept thinking my memory would be jarred by (hello?) MATT DAMON!!!  But... nothin'.

So.  I dunno.  I'm hoping 33 brings my memory back, 'cause 32 is kind of freaking me out.  

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Did You Hear the One about Super Scribbler That Walks Into A Therapists' Office?

I've been in need of some good blog material.  And lucky for me I got tagged.  Usually, I'm a wee bit snarky with being tagged.  I have a hard time following the rules, and I don't like being told what to do.   Go figure.

Since that hasn't changed, and I'm grateful for the tag, here goes:

Chris at Finding My Way (love that title, by the way), AND Jennifer at Crazy, Magic, Sometimes Hectic, Beautiful Life (Um, yeah, that about sums it up, eh?) both tagged me with the same one.  Love that!  I'm feeling all efficient and sh*t getting them both done!  Chris is a doll.  She has a darling little son, Jack, and is a teacher -- of that number-like thing...I think it's called Math.  So many kudos to her.  And Jennifer not only has twins, but she threw another one in there too.  Sheez.  Over-achiever!  Please stop by. 

So this is the 7 Random things tag.  I think I'm supposed to list 7 random things about myself, and tag 7 people or something... (how am I doing so far?  Still reading?).

So I'm tweaking this a bit into 7 Random Reasons Why I Need A Good Therapist:

1.  I dream about having more babies ALL. THE. TIME.  Last night I had a peach-fuzzed, blonde little girl that I kept throwing up into the air because she was asking me to.  Yup.  The baby.  I knew she was mine, but I didn't know her name.    

2.  I totally want to be past-life regressed.

3.  I hate dirty hands and feet.  I wash my hands maniacally, and when I carry baby wipes to wash my feet on flip-flop days.  

4.  I've googled all of my exes.  Heh.  

5.  My dog knows my mood better than I do.  If she's under the bed, I guess that means I should have crawled under there with her.

6.  I organize my kids' toys.  Art supplies no exception.  I actually head out shopping in search of a new "puffy ball" tin, or "googly eye bin."  Markers must be sorted by brand, size, and thickness.  EVERYthing has its place.  Fun times.  (See playroom for neurotic exhibit A.  Wish I had a shot of the "creation station.")

7.   I still think that for a short period, when I was five, I could hover.  I floated, in a doorway.  Totally.  I think I was magic.  

There you have it.  I'm taking recommendations for meds I may need to discover.  

As for the tagging part, if you dig it, please join in.

But wait, the fun is not over, I was also given a hugely generous gift from the ever-so-lovely Jason at The Jason Show.  Does it get much better than this?  I really think it must have been Jason's hunky stand-in that truly gave me this award (not to be outdone by Jason's uber-hunkiness, himself).  Because my lack of quality bogging has been rather apparent these days, okay, months...

However, since I'm not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, Jason, I accept.  Thank you my friend.  Please check him out.  The most loveable family man you may ever meet.  And by family, of course I mean, an ex-wife, a handful of children, an English-as-a-Third-Language (hunky) partner, and all the mixings for some truly fine comedic relief.  

Allow me to flaunt:

I'm passing this one along to:

Clarissa, at A Working Mom's Playground because this mother of beautiful boy/girl twins has heart and soul, creativity and drive, persistence and motivation all of which I admire and envy.  Please check her out.  

Friday, November 28, 2008


Like the moon pulling the too my mind s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-s, and then releases.  Again, s-t-r-e-t-c-h and release.

Can't quite figure out all the stirring within, but something is happening.  

Do you ever feel like your destined to be doing ... well, something else?  The vastness of the world, the poverty, the faces, the stories, the suffering, the all exists out there and yet here I sit, in the safety of my home, my neighborhood, my country.  

s-t-r-e-t-c-h ....

Where can I go to fill the hole within?  Can I build a well so children can be nourished by clean drinking water?  Spend time in a refuge camp?  An orphanage?  Adopt?  Live humbly.  Give.  Give.  Give.  Serve in the Peace Corps?  Travel by foot?  Write?  Learn languages?  

...and release.

Of course I am pulled back to Earth, my world, my home, my family, my children, my job.  I think of jeans I'd like to buy, movies I'd like to watch, organic food I'd like to eat.  I bathe in gallons of clean water, brush my teeth several times a day, sip Starbucks, drive freely, on-line shop, snap at the kids, worship in the church of my choice, sleep restfully.


How can I give more, be more, learn more, live more?  How can I fill my life with more spirit?  How can I share my freedoms with those who suffer?

...and release.

Where can I get that, do that, see that, try that, buy that?


Some days I imagine shedding my skin and following the footsteps of my soul.  Some days I imagine leaping into a life where selfless acts come first, and where that means much more than serving a hot meal to others before ourselves.  Some days I feel the bubbling inside and wonder if I have the courage to make it last...

...and release.

And then I look into the faces of that which I've already begun.  I can't leave them.  Not because they need me.  But because I need them.  I need their strength to guide me through this world, this place.  And my prayer is that we journey into our future with clarity, grace, and purpose, together.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Puff the Magic Dragon

(Chase's favorite song)

Puff the Magic Dragon

Lived by the sea

And frolicked in the autumn mist
In a land called Honalee.

Little Jackie Paper loved that rascal Puff
And brought him strings and sealing wax and other fancy stuff.
Oh, Puff the magic dragon
lived by the sea.
And frolicked in the autumn mist
In a land called Honalee.
Together they would travel
On a boat with billowed sail
Jackie kept a lookout perched
On Puff's gigantic tail.

Noble kings and princes
Would bow whene'er they came.
Pirate ships would lower their flag
When Puff roared out his name.

Oh Puff the magic dragon
Lived by the sea.
And frolicked in the autumn mist
In a land called Honalee.
(Yes, I know what the song means.  But Chase doesn't.  He simply believes in a magical dragon.)

She Sure Told Me

In the car...

Tatum:  Chase, do you hear that beautiful music?

Me:  (Turning the radio up.  Finally, they like MY music.)

Tatum:  Mom, turn that DOWN.  I'm playing the piano.

Me:  ?

Tatum:  Gran downloaded a piano on your phone.

Me:  ?  (Did she just say, "down-loaded?")
  Do you know everything Tatum?

Tatum:  No.  I don't know everything.
       I don't know what tigers eat.
       But I know everything else.

That settles that.

Monday, November 17, 2008

An Epic Woman

'Twas the night before the weekend
And all through the house
Were messes and socks and even a real mouse.

Nothing was hung ANYwhere with care.
But never fear, Cheri would send Martitza to dare
Step into my house, step into my clutter.
And prepare this crazed placed without even a mutter.

A party was happening.
A surprise would take place.
A surprise planned with love for a woman with grace.

The woman would turn half a century old
The woman, my mother, could not be told
ANYthing remotely that breathed the surprise.
So Cheri and and had a plan to devise.

We coaxed my poor Mother into thinking the worst
We told her to meet at the counselor's office first.
A Sunday meeting with "Yoda" to spill all my beans
But, wait, "dress cute," don't wear ratty jeans.

My mother, she fretted, what could it be?
Why does my daughter want to torture me?
My 50th birthday is quickly approaching.
My daughter is selfishly bitching and moaning.

"I'm SO busy Mom."  "My life is a wreck."
You must meet me on Sunday to sort out the mess.
"I'll pick you up at noon, so we can drive together."
Meanwhile Cheri greets guests and cuts bagels.

We show up in the back, tear open the door,
Mom walks into my home to find friends she adores.
Her "Trish" friends, "her Patti" friends, and even some call her "Gran."
Which Cheri, the lovely co-host has planned.

"We did it!"  We cried.  
And of course she looked cute.
'Cause what can be better than hawt legs in hawt boots!

I hope she exclaimed as she cried out in fright,
"I'm a beautiful woman with a beautiful life!"

Happy Birthday Mom.  You rock 50!  I love you.

For the backstory on this incredible woman, see here.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

He Forgot That "Asshole" Has a Silent "e"

For a couple of weeks now, first grade has been an obnoxious amount of the Silent "e" rule.  We sing songs about it.  We practice it in reading group with ridiculous stories about how one might "bake a cake on a lake with a snake" or "tape a shape of a kite while awake in space."  Uh-huh.  Kind of like the Harry Potter series, gripping, only ... not.

So when Parent Teacher conferences began this morning, I did what most teachers do:  inundate parents with paperwork and examples and assessments and journals and test-scores and rubrics and ... did I mention the journal?

So there's me, in my most professional demeanor, behind my kidney table, work sprawled out, presenting to Little Boy Blue's parents.

Me:  I'd like to share with you some of Little Boy Blue's writing samples now.  Here (flipping pages) are our daily journals.  Each morning we (something catches my eye ... did that just say "Bitch?" ... no, couldn't have) begin with a writing prompt (flipping through more pages ... there it is again, it says "Bich" ... oh, it must mean "rich," or "big,"...) and students respond (THAT'S IT!).  

Me:  ?  

Parents:  ?


Dear Mrs. Just-Jamie,

Bich  Asshol Bich Bich Ass

Yup.  And the shit of it all was this, he didn't even freakin' remember the silent "e" in Ass-holE.

Sheez.  Some teacher I am.

(In Little Boy Blue's defense, I have yet to teach the trigraph "tch.")


FYI:  Said journal went home as a souvenir for Little Boy Blue to explain.  We'll see what he has to write about this week.   

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Me:  In a teacher-y sing-song-y-Mommy-voice:  What do you want to be when you grow up Tatum?

Tater:  A doctor.  A kid's doctor.

Me (Annoying Voice):  Oooooh.  A Pedia-tri-cian!  Wow!
And Chase what do you want to be honey?

Chase:  A Daddy.

Me:  Awwww.  How sweet.  And how many kids do you want?

Chase:  None.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I Hope You Dance

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat
But always keep that hunger

May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid life ever leave you empty handed

I hope you still feel small 
When you stand beside the ocean

Whenever one door closes, I hope one more opens
Promise me you'll give faith a fighting chance

And when you get the chance to sit it out or dance

I hope you dance

I hope you dance!