With four kids, it's always hard to find time to be with each individual child.
It's rare that I get a good chunk of time with just one of them, so I have to take small moments, anywhere I can get them.

The other night, my girls went with my niece to choose & order their bridesmaid dresses for her wedding. John and Tim were at work, so this left me and Andrew at home by ourselves. Shortly after they left, he came up to me and just started talking. Right away he mentioned the situation going on with his biological mother (a.k.a. the egg donor). It was obvious that it was weighing heavily on his mind and he needed to talk about it. I listened to him, and reassured him as much as I could. He seemed to feel better, and went off to play the Wii. It was just a short conversation, but those are the times that I have to take when I can get them.

That same night after the girls got home, Elayna was tired and grouchy, but didn't want to go to bed. Andrew was already asleep, and Shelbie had a friend over and they were doing karaoke in another room. Elayna laid down on the couch with her head on my lap, and I slowly ran my fingers through her hair, and stroked her head, until she was so sleepy she could barely stumble into her room. A very brief and simple thing, but a cherished moment.

The next day, Shelbie and I were talking at dinner and realized we needed a few things from the store. I decided that she and I would make a quick trip after dinner, just the two of us. Usually even for quick trips, it's the whole family or at least three kids tagging along. But occasionally, just the Teenager and I get a chance to sneak off on our own, and I love it. We laugh and tease each other. I lock her out of the car and embarrass her. And we talk. Again....a short space of time. But one that I can't take for granted. She is 15 and still wants to be seen with me. She is 15 and still likes to go places with me. She is 15 and will be grown before I know it. I have to grab these moments while I can.

And then there's Tim. Tim will be eighteen next month. He is a senior in high school. And he lives primarily with his Dad; he's with me every other week from Thursday - Monday. He has a job at a burger place. So, time with him is even harder to come by than it is with the other three. One thing that works to my advantage is being a night owl. He works late hours sometimes on the weekends, and I'm always up when he gets home, and often the only one up. We talk about anything and everything, from life in general to crazy things that happened at work. He has always had this gift of asking me questions that I either have to really think about the answer for, or have never thought of myself, or have no idea how to even answer them. He still does that. This kid makes me THINK. And then I throw something back at him that makes him think, or look at something from a different angle. We may not always agree, but we generally respect each others' opinions. We debate. And we make each other laugh. A few late night moments....and we make the most of them.

I hope I'm always able to at least have these little moments, grabbed here and there, with my kids. Where it's just the two of us, and we talk, or we listen, or we don't talk at all. I'll never outgrow it....I hope they don't either.

*Note* I did it! I blogged every day in February for NaBloPoMo! I'm so proud of myself. Don't be concerned if I take a few days off! If we get any news re: Elayna's thumb I'll update on Facebook. She's going to the orthopedic doc tomorrow.


This is not the post I had planned for today.....

I had planned to do a Sundays in my City post today, showing you the pictures I took this weekend.
But I didn't get to upload them yet....because we are at the ER.
Elayna decided she wanted to play soccer this season, so we signed both her and Andrew up. Then we went to the park to practice, and while playing goalie, she got hit in her thumb with the ball.
That was yesterday. Today her thumb looks like this:

We've been at the ER for 2 hours already and I am getting really ticked off!
I hope it's not broken, but it's showing signs.

*UPDATE* It's broken. Definitely at the base of the thumb at possibly at the growth plate also. They splinted it, and I'll be calling an orthopedist tomorrow to make an appointment.
I can't believe we had a soccer injury before the first practice! Leave it to the Dysfunctional Family!

And of course, I had to take a pic of her with her splint, loopy on Tylenol w/ codeine. She asked me why and I said, "Duh, I'm a blogger, that's what we do."


I'm alive, oh oh so alive....

(Anyone remember that song? You'd have to be old like me....)

It's Friday, and I'm alive! I even cleaned my house for the first time in over a week (other than the bare minimum). It was a mess; my family is a bunch of slackers!
Anyway. It has been cleaned, scrubbed, bleached, and Lysoled. I have a new toothbrush. I'm determined that I will NOT get this again and neither will anyone else in my family! RAWR!

We have a pretty nice weekend planned. The kids are home, and tomorrow the girls and I are going with my niece to order the dresses they will wear in my niece's wedding. They are bridesmaids. The girls are SO excited! Her wedding is in June.
Then on Saturday we are planning on going to a Gator baseball game. Sunday other than church, I think we will just hang around outside to enjoy this Spring weather.

Tomorrow I'll be announcing the winner of the Big G Cereals giveaway, so check back if you entered!

Does anyone watch "What Would You Do?" The episode on the OWN Network the other night literally made me cry. They had actors collapse on busy sidewalks to see if anyone would stop to help. For the most part, people walked right by as if this unconscious person lying on the sidewalk didn't exist. Finally a clearly disabled homeless woman stopped and begged people to call 911 (she didn't have a phone), and finally someone listened to her. I was appalled. I don't understand how a human being can walk by another human being lying on the ground and just ignore them. I would be so ashamed if I had done that, or if my children did that. It's so cold and unfeeling. It really, deeply upset me.
So tell me...what would YOU do?

Alright, blogosphere, that's all I've got for ya.
Visit Mrs 4444 for more Friday Fragments, and leave me a comment telling me what you have planned for this weekend! I hope it's a good one.

Mommy's Idea

Here's my song for this week, appropriately enough:

Let's Discuss This Further....

First, I just need to apologize for my craptastic blogging lately. My posts have been poor quality, and visiting blogs has been totally hit or miss. Commenting? Almost nonexistent. I have pretty much sucked.

The only reason I've been posting at all is because I committed to doing NaBloPoMo this month, and I have not missed a day yet. I'm determined to see this one through, and I'm almost there!

As I've already whined about here, I have been sick with the horrific death plague.

This is the first day in which I have felt that maybe, possibly, I might just live.
I'm not well, but I at least think that one day, perhaps, I will be. And you can bet your sweet hiney that next year, I WILL get my flu shot.

Anyhoo. I've mentioned here before my penchant for crap TV. If it's reality and it's garbage, I'm probably watching it. I'm just laying it on the line for you here. So, if you also have this sick addiction hobby, you might like my Blog Frog Community. I've decided to start discussing the madness of these shows there.

In fact, I intended to start tonight, after the newest freakshow episode of Toddlers & Tiaras, but my internet connection crapped out on me and then I feel asleep. Woops.

But it will get going. And I'd love for you to join me when it does! Because if these shows don't provide good fodder for discussion, I don't know what does.

You can join in a discussion, or start your own.

So click the link, or you can get there from the widget in my sidebar. You know you want to. It will be our dirty little secret.


I guess the PC term would be "Little Meeple"

Remember Meep?

Meep is Elayna's kitten. She came to live in our zoo in May of last year.

She is almost a year old now. And it seems that she forgot something.

She forgot to GROW.

Meep shortly after we got her:

Meep in November (taken from this post):

Meep tonight (not terribly happy to be woken up with a flash in her face):

There's nothing wrong with her; she's just little. Her mom was really small too.

She's still silly. She still gets into a lot of trouble. She still LOVES her Layna.

She's just our little Midget Meep.

For more Wordful Wednesday posts, visit Seven Clown Circus & Parenting by Dummies!


This guy?

Is kind of awesome.

To summarize in case you don't feel like clicking, he crashed Paris Hilton's birthday party (totally lame), got wasted (also lame), stole her $2000+ birthday cake that was going to be thrown out uneaten (less lame), and then the next day, took the cake to a homeless shelter and they all chowed down on ridiculously expensive cake (FANFREAKINGTASTIC).

Love it!


Get out a glass & corkscrew for this one.

This weekend has sucked.
The weather was absolutely gorgeous, warm and sunny. My version of a perfect weekend.

And I have spent almost all of it in bed.
I think I have the flu....I'll probably go to the doctor tomorrow.

I haven't been this sick in years. I can't sleep lying down, and sleeping sitting up is not exactly restful or comfortable. Oh, and I can't talk. At all.

John will ask me a question, walk away while I'm whispering the answer, then yell "WHAT? I cant hear you." Duh.

We missed John's friend's wedding reception Saturday night, and our small church group meeting Sunday night (although we did make it to church Sunday morning).
I could tell you all the lovely details of my illness.....but I will spare you.

So there you have it. That's what's going on in the Dysfunction Junction this weekend.
Hope yours was better than mine!


Seems Like a Good Day.....

Between the Lines

.....for a Blog Hop! So I'm hopping in the Spotlight Saturday Blog Hop.

If you're here for the first time from the hop.....allow me to introduce myself.

I'm Cyndy, a.k.a. Dysfunctional Mom. I am the Supreme Ruler of a blended family with lots of kids and lots of pets. I suck at math, so I don't always remember exact numbers. "Lots" sums it up well.

I am short, Southern, and sassy. I love my crazy family, Diet Dr Pepper, the color purple, and this here blog.

Oh, and I have a new giveaway starting very soon, so make sure you come back!

Have a great weekend & a fun Hop!


Fragments of my Brain

I have a whole lot going on in my head this week, but not a lot that I can break off into fragments and leave here, unfortunately. It sure would be nice to unload it all!
This week I was struck down with a nasty cold, along with that lovely time of the month, all at once. I feel like crap. Still, I managed to do my regular mother, wife, animal caretaker, etc. duties. Do I get an award or something?
So after I wrote the post about My Journey, yet another fork has come up in the road. Well, more of an extra fork in one of the roads. Or something. Anyway. Decisions, decisions. Sigh.
This whole 'being a grownup' thing is SO overrated.
My Publix Italian Days Giveaway ends tomorrow (Saturday, 2/19/11). It's for a $25 Publix Gift Card. You gotta love that! Get your name in the hat.
Last weekend was super-busy; this weekend is totally opposite. And I'm looking forward to it. I'll probably do a whole lot of laundry and a whole lot of NOTHING. (except enjoy some fabulously warm weather!)
My cat is on the table, licking ranch dressing off of a plate.
Doesn't that just make you want to come have dinner with me?

I had a comment on my Pissy List post, asking if the commenter came up as a no-reply blogger. She did, so I went to her blog and told her that, and linked her to Mamarazzi's post explaining how to fix it. However, she came back and told me that she is a Wordpress blogger, so that explanation doesn't apply to her. Does anyone know how a Wordpress user can fix the no-reply commenter issue?
Have a great weekend, friends!
Stop by Mrs 4444's place to check out all of the other fraggers.

Mommy's Idea


My Journey

It's been said many times before that life is a journey.

As we travel along this journey, we will come to forks in the road. We have to choose which one to take, often not knowing which one is the right one. We don't know what lies at the end of either road. We just have to choose one road and follow that path, and see what awaits us.

As we look back later in life, we may wonder what would have happened if we'd chosen the other road.

Sometimes we may wonder, if we had to travel this path over again, would we choose that same road, knowing what we know now?

Some people confidently proclaim that they wouldn't change a thing. That the roads they chose in the past are what has made them who they are today, and if they had it to do over, they would do the same thing.

Me, I can't always say that. If I began all over again, maybe I would choose a different road, and see where it led me. Because I have definitely made some bad choices in the past.

Right now, I am finding myself at one of those forks again. There are several roads to choose from. Maybe there isn't a right choice or a wrong choice; just different choices.

We just have to choose the one that we believe is the best for everyone involved.

But there is the more familiar road, the safer and secure road.

And then there is the road less traveled. The unknown. The exciting.

Albert Einstein said the definition of insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, and expecting different results.

Maybe it's time to seek some sanity in this crazy life by doing something different, and getting different results.

And choosing a different road to get there.

I Have a Pissy List.

Last week, I had a Happy List.
Today, I have a Pissy List.
Feel free to let me know in comments what would go on your Pissy List.

These are the things that just Piss.Me.Off.
{OK just some of the things.
There isn't enough space in the whole interwebz for all of them.}

1. selfish people.
2. partial feeds in my Google reader.
3. the fact that absentee parents retain their 'rights'.
4. the fact that nobody fills the dogs' water dish except for me.
5. captchas.
6. Adam on Teen Mom 2.
7. Jenelle on Teen Mom 2.
8. The fact that I watch Teen Mom 2.
9. winter.
10. the fact that the old western motto of "some people just need killin" is no longer a valid defense.
11. when I really want to reply to your comment, and then I see that you are a "no-reply" commenter.
12. when people say "I could care less".
13. when people mix up YOUR and YOU'RE.
14. and use an apostrophe before 's' when it's not necessary.
15. broken nails.

Although I'm in such a LOVELY mood that I could do this for hours, I'll stop now.
What's on your Pissy List?


Valentine's Day at Dysfunction Junction

My take on Valentine's Day is much like my take on many other things in life.

It's what you make it.

If you make it an over-commercialized day of buying crap for people you barely tolerate, then it's a crap holiday.
If you buy diamonds because you feel pressured by the diamond companies to do so, you're a sucker.
If that's the only day you say "I love you" to those that you love....I guess it's better than never saying it at all. But not much better.

But if you make it a fun day, in which you celebrate those that you love in whatever way you choose....then it can be a great day.
Do what works for you. Make cookies with your kids. Then put them to bed early and have a quiet dinner with your husband, boyfriend, girlfriend, lonely elderly neighbor.....
It's about showing love. You can show love to whomever you love. It doesn't have to be romantic love. And you don't have to spend money.
To me, Valentine's Day is a celebration of love. I love my family every day, but I welcome a special day devoted to showering them with love.
And the fact that it involves copious amounts of chocolate makes it a WIN in my book, hands.down.

Happy Valentine's Day!


Valentine's Weekend WrapUp

Just sharing a few, ok a bunch of, pics from this weekend.

These are from Devil's Millhopper.
John, the girls, and I visited the park and had a picnic lunch there on Saturday.
It's a huge sinkhole full of natural vegetation and small waterfalls.

(that's a stuffed fox squirrel)

These were taken at the bowling alley during my friend's son's birthday party.

This is my daughter Shelbie and her best friend AshLee.
AshLee is MY best friend Danielle's daughter.
They are 18 days apart in age.

Danielle & Me

My son Tim with his girlfriend Jessica
(he's refusing to smile just to bug me.)

Elayna & I at home....we are wearing matching shirts =)

Me & My Valentine, at our Valentine's Banquet

Hope y'all had a great weekend!
I'm joining in with Sundays in my City over at Unknown Mami's place!

Unknown Mami


Saturday Stuff

I don't usually post on the weekends, but I'm doing the whole NaBloPoMo thing this month, so the plan is to post every day. So far, so good! So this is going to be a 'stream of consciousness' type of post. You've been warned!

Today was nuts. As soon as the kids got home from school, we went to the pharmacy, bank, McD's for a snack, dropped John off at work, then to the post office, Target, Publix, and home. Only to turn right back around and meet a friend at a supermarket in town so that she could buy tickets for our Valentine's Dinner from Shelbie (they are being sold by the Youth Group). We didn't get home until after 8. I threw frozen pizzas in the oven and called it dinner! Whew! (we won't even discuss the cleaning & feeding pets I've done this evening too.)

We have a really fun weekend planned. Andrew doesn't know it yet, but tomorrow he and Tim (my oldest son who is 17) are going to the movies. They've been wanting to go together for a long time and I had the idea to give them movie money for Valentine's Day. So they're going to see Gnomeo & Juliet. John and I are taking the girls to the Devil's Millhopper, a state park. Some of our state parks may be closing in the future (which is a darned shame) and that is one of them. We haven't been in forever, and we want to take the kids while we still have a chance. We're going to pack a picnic lunch; it's going to be cool but sunny.

Tomorrow night we are going to make Rice Krispy treats for the little kids to take to school for their Valentine's Day parties, watch Beverly Hills Chihuahua 2, and the kids are going to finish addressing their Valentine's cards for their classmates.

On Sunday after church, we're going to a bowling alley to celebrate my best friend's son's 18th birthday. He is only a month older than my oldest son, and they have been friends their whole lives. Our daughters are best friends. We are SO looking forward to this! Although I'm still in denial that they are turning 18.

This picture is from when they were about three. (Cody has always been much bigger than Tim!) I first posted it here on my blog when they were fourteen; now they're almost 18! How does this happen?! I need to get a picture of them together on Sunday, for comparison.

After the party, we'll head back to church for our Valentine's Dinner. They provide babysitting & dinner for the kids, and the youth will be serving us. Muah ha ha. My parents are coming (oh boy!) and Tim & his girlfriend may be coming too (hopefully).

Hopefully I'll have lots of pics to share tomorrow. Hope you all are enjoying your weekend!


New Look, Same Great Taste!

I couldn't wait to do my Friday Fragments post this week, because my new layout is done and I LOOOOVE it! If you're reading in a reader, please click over and check it out. And don't forget to grab my NEW button!
It was made by Minx Designs, and if you are looking for a new design for your blog, I highly recommend her!

There are some new developments in the situation with Andrew that make me extra cautious about what I post here. Just in case. So I don't mean to leave you hanging. Right now if he does have to see her at all, it will be next month. So, I'll leave it at that and update from there as much I can.

I ordered these buttons from zazzle.com. We're going to wear them next month at the March for Babies. I am SO pleased with how they turned out! And I was not paid to post about it, I paid for the buttons myself and wanted to share with you all.

I heard about this on TV this week and think it's fantastic. It's called Operation Beautiful. It's all about building women up. I love it!

We have a fun weekend planned. My best friend's son is turning 18, so we'll be going to his party. We're having a Valentine's Day dinner at church Sunday night. And some other stuff thrown in there too. I'm looking forward to it!

Do you have any fun weekend or Valentine's Day plans? Are you a Valentine's Scrooge? Either way, have a great weekend! And check out Half Past Kissin Time for more Friday Fragments.

Mommy's Idea