Oh my aching testicles....

Last week, after my foot diagnosis, I told the kids about it and then explained that basically it means I strained some tendons.
Today, Ladybug came home after school and had a friend in tow. They breezed in, grabbed drinks, and were heading back out the door. Walking past me, Ladybug asked, "How's your foot feeling?" and I said "About the same". Her friend asked, "What's wrong with your Mom's foot?" To which Ladybug replied.....

"Ummmm, what's it called........she sprung her testicles."

I'm pretty sure her friend now thinks I'm a drag queen.

***By the way***
If you put one of my buttons on your blog, first of all - thanks! Second, a kind reader pointed out to me that when you click on the button, it does not lead to MY blog! The code was incorrect and led to someone else's blog. I fixed it, and the code under the button is now correct.


Mom Said OK!

I'm going to brag. Right here, right now. Because Mom said it was OK! Tara over at If Mom Says OK made a really good point. You just can't blatantly brag about your kids with most people. But in Blogland, we can, and do, happily brag about our kids and nobody thinks badly about it. Sweet! So, here I go.

* T-bone: I'm absolutely amazed at how he is maturing. He is thoughtful, helpful, and respectful. He is so smart, and wise beyond his years. And he has a wicked sense of humor! He's fun to be around.

* Ladybug: She has always been a very caring person. She's also very friendly, and I admire that. I was so shy at her age! She has more friends that I can keep up with.
She's also very responsible. Recently she's been babysitting for a friend of her dad's one night per week and it's going very well. She can be helpful when she wants to be. ;o)

* Spiderman: This kid has come a long, long way. Despite his ADHD, he does well in school and tries so hard. He's such a people pleaser and really wants to do his best. He's also very friendly and extremely likeable. Everyone who meets him falls in love. He's also very sensitive and caring. If I so much as stub my toe, it's Spiderman who immediately says "Are you OK??"

* Princess: I just posted all about her but hey, it's bragging time, so I'm going to do it some more! This kid is so smart, it's scary. She totally blows my mind. She is very passionate and loyal. Since preschool, she has had one "boyfriend". He's a son of a friend of mine, and we haven't seen him in forever, but she still says he's her boyfriend. However....she now has another one. Woops! She is also very lovable and very very a little spoiled. She loves animals and people. She's quick to give me her toys and clothes and tell me to donate them.

Yep...I'm proud, and it's always nice to brag about it! Thanks, Tara.


Weekend Wrap-up - 01.26.09

~The slumber party went very well. The girls had a blast, were well behaved, and got picked up on time. Can't beat that!

~ The Princess LOVES her kitten. She said he is the best gift EVER! She named him Charley. He is so cute and very vocal and LOUD. Our other cat, Lilly, is so disgusted with him and won't even look at any of us. She's in quite a snit!

~ We spent Sunday working on the house & yard. A little child labor never hurt anyone! I cleared out my little get-away spot and put some new stepping stones & stuff out there. I've got to get a picture of it.........when I get a working camera. GRR! Anyway, I spent time out there this morning and it was heavenly; birds flying all around, so peaceful. The weather is FINALLY getting better here in "sunny" Florida!

~ Spiderman learned to ride a bike without training wheels yesterday! He's been scared to try but I gave him a pep-talk yesterday and he suddenly became determined to master it....and he did! Look out world, Spiderman's on wheels!

Hope y'all had a great weekend!


You Will Always Be My Baby

(why can I never post videos, when everyone else can?)

In the sunlight or the rain, brightest nights or darkest days
I'll always feel the same way

whatever road you may be on
No you're never too far gone
My love is there wherever you may be
Just remember that you will always be my baby...

~Sara Evans

Today my baby turns eight years old. She was the happiest surprise I have ever received. We thought we'd stop at two kids, but I wasn't ready to do anything permanent. Now I know why.......God had other plans for me. He had plans for me to be the mother to my Princess.
This child is spunky and stubborn. She has been as far back as I can remember. She is headstrong and spoiled. She is terribly brilliant and incredibly caring. My pride in her goes beyond words. I love her fiercely and pity anyone who could ever try to come between us, or hurt my baby.
And she will always be my baby. J and I are very happy with our decision not to have any more children. She loves being my baby, and she knows that she always will be.
It's been hardest for me to watch her grow up than the other two, because I knew she would be the last one. Every birthday gets harder. Every grade in school marks another milestone.
But no matter what, she will always be my baby.
Today, we'll have a slumber party. Hannah Montana everything, and that, my friends, is LOVE. I will decorate my house with that pop tart's stuff because the Princess loves her, even though I don't. (and it's better than the JoBros, forheaven'ssake!)
And...shhhh....she doesn't know it yet, but besides all the Hannah Montana stuff........she's...getting...a...kitten!
And I will treasure every bittersweet moment of yet another birthday.

I love you with all my heart, my Princess.


Over My Dead Plantars

I've been having some problems with my left foot. It won't flex upward, I had tendon pain, and it was making walking kind of awkward.

So today I visited the employee clinic at the hospital in which I work.

To my surprise, I had not suffered a stroke, and I don't have a fatal illness. Woohoo, go me!

But, the doctor said that I do have Plantar Fasciitis.

Okay, fine. Sounds interesting.

She said I need to stop wearing crocs.

Okay, fine. Not the end of the world, I can deal.

She said I need more arch support.

Okie dokie.

Then, she said I need to stop wearing flip-flops.


Has she lost her ever-loving mind?
Is there anything else even available to wear in Florida in the summer?
I've been wearing flip-flops since....probably before I could walk!

I am a flip-flop girl!

She will get my flip-flops when she pries them off of my cold, dead feet.


Can I Get a Little Sympathy?

Clear Overnight Low


I am seriously in need of some sympathy here.

I live in Florida. The Sunshine State. You know...beaches, palm trees, the whole deal.

So, what the heck is up with lows in the 20's?

I know, I know, you're thinking, sympathy? Please! We deal with temps like that all the time, and much lower! And snow, and all that stuff.

But here's the thing....we are not used to these temps! We don't own clothes like these:

because we just never need them!

We're used to one of these -

getting us through the coldest days.

Our cars don't know how to act. Our heaters are in shock!

Our blood is thin.

Our skin is thin.

We are weak!

So, please, can we have just a little bit of sympathy?

Anyone? Anyone? Anyone? Anyone? Anyone?

It's awfully quiet around here.......


Dishing on My Bloggy Friends.........

I have found some lip-smackin' good recipes from some of my favorite blog reads lately, and it's time I tell you all about them.

First of all, it's a Southern tradition on New Year's Day to eat black-eyed peas. Now, I like them alright, some people love them, some people hate them. But Melissa over at Stretch Marks gave me a whole different take on Black Eyed Peas with her Hot & Cheesy Black Eyed Pea Dip. I brought a batch to work, and it was a huge hit, even with the Yankees who'd never eaten a black eyed pea in their life! It is absolutely delicious, I promise.

Then, I saw this cheesy, bacony recipe over at The Fun House. If you don't already read The Fun House, you don't know what you're missing. Her little Pickle just makes my day, and this recipe was perfect for her because she is obsessed with bacon! And I've always said, bacon makes EVERYTHING taste better. So try this Bacon Cheeseburger Chicken recipe. (my only issue with it is the name....there's no 'burger' in this recipe! So I think we'll call it something different at my house, because I'm dorky like that.)

Next up, I got a recipe from Kat at Seeking Sanity. Kat is awesome; she has three boys, is pregnant with bambino number four, and not only cooks dinner, but handles raw meat while battling pregnancy nausea. She.totally.rocks. And she even took time out to share her recipe for Porcupine Balls with us! I made this dish tonight. My kids found this name HILARIOUS, because they're at that age where anything to do with balls is funny. And potty humor in any form is the highest form of entertainment to this crew. The dish itself got mixed reviews, but hubby and I liked it a lot.

And last but not least, I found this recipe for Chicken w/ asparagus and pistachios at Live.Love.Eat. I haven't made it yet, because I've decided to make it when hubby and I are alone, and we'll have some wine and light the candles and make it a nice romantic evening. Somehow this dish just seems to call for that.

Have you found any good recipes lately? If not, check these out. If so, share with me! I hope you all had a great weekend!


Fx4 ~ Prized Possession

It's that time of the week....Phriday Foto Phinish Fiesta!

That's T-bone. He's almost 16 now.

Oh, the memories this brings back.

Don't phorget to visit Candid Carrie phor more Fx4 posts.

Have a Wonderful Weekend!



Image: Suicide by Scandinavian artist Joakim Back.

"Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem." -Phil Donahue

That sounds correct in theory, but the fact is, it's not always true.

That wasn't the case when suicide touched my life.

Mrs. C was my first grade teacher. She was also my mother's best friend. She was a very good person. She had Multiple Sclerosis. And for years, she bravely battled. She kept on teaching when she could barely walk.
But she was tired. Her marriage was failing. Her only child was rebelling. Her parents were elderly and ill. Her problems were not temporary. They were getting progressively worse.

She didn't want to battle it any more.

So one day, her teenaged daughter left the house and left Mrs. C alone. Mrs. C called my mother and very calmly told her that she was going to kill herself. She asked my mom not to try to talk her out of it. Her only request was that she call someone to come get her body; she didn't want her daughter to find her.

Naturally, my mother begged her to reconsider. She called my brother, who lived near Mrs. C, and he raced over. She called 911, then headed to Mrs. C's house herself.
They were all too late. She'd shot herself. She was rushed to surgery, but died on the table.

This was eight years ago, but I still think of her often. She is buried in the same cemetery as Baby JW, and when we visit his grave, we also visit hers. She touched many lives. She was a very special person. She will forever have my respect and admiration, and I pray that she is out of pain now.

She's been on my mind lately, around the anniversary of her death. And then last week, I learned of another friend's suicide. I was talking to my son and his cousin (on his father's side), and they told me that a good friend of my ex-husband's recently committed suicide. This is someone who used to be at my house on an almost daily basis. He ate dinner with us countless times. He helped me out when my ex was out of town with work, and also when we seperated, he helped me move. Now he's gone, at 42 years old. Why...I have no idea. Maybe nobody knows and will ever really know. There aren't always answers.
There is help, though.

"More than one soul dies in a suicide."

Has suicide touched your life?


Lookie Here What I Got!

I got a button!

And here's the really cool part.......it was free!
Lee over at Lee's Free Custom Layouts made it for me.

Check it out, and grab my button!


Weekend Wrap-up & Stuff

~ Thank you all for all of the comments & advice on my last post. Many of you suggested only cooking & buying healthy foods, which I actually already do. For the most part, our meals at home are very healthy. It's the 2 meals per day he eats at work that worry me, as well as the choices he makes when we're out. But I'm taking your advice & having a talk with him, and then if I have to pull out the nagging.........well, hopefully I won't.

~ The Gators won the National Championship last week, and on Sunday we went to the Celebration at the Swamp. It was a blast, and we found out that our boy, Tim Tebow, is coming back for one more season. We were thrilled to hear that. From the time he came onto the field, the entire crowd was yelling "One more year!" Except for me....I was yelling "Take off your shirt!" Heh. I heart him. (seriously, he is a great guy and a very good role model, as well as an awesome quarterback. and hot.)

~ I finally broke down and went to the doctor today due to the Crud I've been fighting off and on for weeks. I could've saved us both time by just saying, "I have a sinus infection, gimme a Z-pack", but I let him earn his money.

~ I got this book today at the library, and I am loving it! Where has she been all of my life? How have I not heard of this book before? Am I the only one who's been under a rock and missed this?

~ Deadbeat mothers make me sick. I just had to get that off of my chest!

How was your weekend? What are you reading? What do you need to get off of your chest?


To Nag or not....

....that is my dilemma.

My hubby helps out around the house a lot. He's great with the kids. He's a great husband.

He doesn't smoke, or drink, or have any bad habits....except one.

It's his diet. He loves fried chicken, cheeseburgers, french fries, soda....total garbage.

I primarily eat a healthy diet since my weight loss surgery, but as someone who used to have major issues with food, I've tried to leave him alone and not nag him. I know how hard it is to struggle with food and eat healthy. I would still be eating a terrible diet if not for my weight loss surgery. So, I get it. And it's not about him losing weight; he's only moderately overweight and I swear from the bottom of my heart, it's not about that AT ALL. I love him with all my heart, exactly as he is.

BUT...here's the thing. His father died in his late forties due to complications of congestive heart failure.

That's FORTIES, people, as in 4-0-s, as in, J is already 31. The thought of losing him that early in life is terrifying to me....incomprehensible.

This past weekend we were talking about his dad, and I tried to subtly drop some hints that he should really start taking better care of himself. He's pretty active but we could always exercise more, too. He always agrees and says he's going to start eating healthy, and he starts off well but then goes back to the old habits.
So here's my question. I think if I stop buying him unhealthy foods and basically nag the crap out of him, he'll eat more healthy foods. At the very least, he'll only eat the crap occasionally instead of most of the time. But I don't want to be a nag. I'm not a naggy kind of person. I'm more the type to tell you what I think and then let you do what you want.
I also don't want him to think I'm nagging for any reason BUT the fact that I don't want to lose him at a young age. It's about his health....it's about his life.

So....please, tell me what you think. Should I nag, or not?


Dogwood Blooms

On the day after Christmas, I went into the back yard with a cup of coffee and a book. I have a special place in the yard that I just love. It's a glider, under a lattice awning covered with vines. It's one of the first things I fell in love with when I first looked at our house.
So, as soon as I sat down on my glider, I looked at the ground and saw two perfect dogwood blooms. They were just lying very nicely on the ground. The odd thing about that is....we don't have any dogwood trees. I knew we didn't, because I love them and I'd have noticed. But just in case, I checked the front yard, back yard, and the yards beside us. No dogwood trees. And even though we're in Florida, I doubt they'd be blooming right now anyway.
I still have no idea where these blooms came from, but considering it was the day after Christmas and knowing the Legend of the Dogwood, it was a very touching and interesting experience.

The Legend of the Dogwood
An old and beautiful legend has it that, at the time of the crucifixion, the dogwood was comparable in size to the oak tree and other monarchs of the forest. Because of its firmness and strength it was selected as the timber for the cross, but to be put to such a cruel use greatly distressed the tree. Sensing this, the crucified Jesus in his gentle pity for the sorrow and suffering of all said to it: "Because of your sorrow and pity for My sufferings, never again will the dogwood tree grow large enough to be used as a gibbet. Henceforth it will be slender, bent and twisted and its blossoms will be in the form of a cross -- two long and two short petals. In the center of the outer edge of each petal there will be nail prints -- brown with rust and stained with red -- and in the center of the flower will be a crown of thorns, and all who see this will remember.

*Don't forget to enter my giveaway! Only 2 more days until the Royal Drawing.*