Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Day Kevin Gets Off

Monday, March 2, marks the seven year anniversary of Kevin and I meeting. I only know that date because it's my brothers' birthday. I love telling people about how we met. So, you, too, will hear this story.

I was attending a birthday party for a girl I didn't know. I had been invited by an old college friend I had run into a few weekends prior. It was at a bar. I invited my roommate. We arrived and were standing around. This guy came up to the two of us and asked if he could buy us a drink. Of course you can.

He came back with the drinks and we started with the small talk necessary to thank a young man for a free drink ... I was very kind, right?

He mentioned something about having moved up to Oklahoma from Texas. "What part of Texas?" "Dallas." "I grew up around Dallas ... what part?" "Plano." "Oh."

Here's where I have to tell a side story ... if you're not from the Dallas in the mid-90s, you won't understand. Plano in the mid-90s was full of snobby little 'rich kids' ... kids left to their own devices on weekends with mommy and daddy's credit card and driving a better than I could imagine. I had dated "Plano boys" before and had no interest in trying another one out.

But, man ... he just wouldn't leave me alone. He kept buying me drinks and asked if we could play pool. He got really cocky and when there was this impossible shot left on the table ... he asked if I would kiss him if he made it. Sure ... he'll never make it. And, of course, he did.

I thought at the time that I had just been had and he was some professional pool player, but I've since learned that he's a really lousy pool player.

We exchanged numbers and parted ways. I went home and went to bed.

The next morning, I woke up ... and I was hungry. And worse, I was broke. I decided to call this Kevin I had met the previous morning to see if he wanted to grab lunch. (His treat.) He agreed, but not until Trading Spaces was over.

Really ... he admitted watching that?

Anyway, we ate lunch and saw a movie ... perhaps one of only two or three we've ever seen together!

That was pretty much the end of that.

Hmmmm ... I really am out of practice in my blogging ... rambling on without getting to a quick point. My point in all this is that on Monday, March 2nd ... Kevin will not be at work. He's taking a personal day to ... do nothing. It's "Kevin Day" ... in celebration of ... Kevin.

I don't have any real plans ... I plan to leave him alone and let him rest. I know he could use some time to himself, so I'm sure I'll take Lubbock out for a little that afternoon.

Do I get a day, too, though? I should choose that date soon so I can mark it in the calendar!

Friday, February 20, 2009

The Deep Topics

This blog isn't just about fun and games, right?

So, I mentioned hiring a home organizational consultant/life coach for housewives/therapist (although she mentioned several times that she's not a therapist ... as I'm sure she's required by law to do ... as in Dr. Laura isn't a doctor). Anyway ...

She came, we talked, and we organized. I think I was a little further along in my emotional organizing process than she's used to working with. I have already made many tough decisions about what I'm keeping and what's going. I was able to talk through a few things that I was having a hard time deciding about. So, that was helpful.

There were a few things I took away from it, though ... and I will share that with you.

*I set personal goals (to go along with the family goals). I'll talk about those later. But, the importance of this is not losing myself in the process of making a better home for my family.

*I need to use the tasks I enjoy doing throughout the day (blogging) as a reward for doing things I don't enjoy doing (everything else ... I'm kidding ... only kind of).

*I am not as bad as I think I am. I know lots of you have told me this, but it's always nice to have an outsiders perspective.

*I needed to flip the organizing process around (which is actually contradictory to the second item). Meaning ... we organized my craft area while she was here. I had been putting it off to do after everything else was done. But, by having it done first, it made me more excited to tackle the remaining areas.

So, she left and that weekend (the one we finished ... I'm almost caught up in blogging, making day references easier) ... Kevin and I tackled a few last areas of note.

Picture gallery!!!

Everthing that we pulled out of our bedroom ... donate (some trash ... like the bra I just now noticed is in the pile).

The basement currently ... Kevin spent the weekend tearing down a big shelving unit that was built around the pole. It made the basement seem really small. And he had fun using power tools. There's still a few things to go through down there.

My crafting area ...

Wrapping paper supplies ...

Card making supplies ...

The drawer inside my table ... Have I mentioned how much I heart this table?

My lazy susan ... lots of cubbies and drawers ... at Michaels for $39.99 ... use your 40% off coupon, though! Steal!

The beginnings of the organizational OCD-ness showing through once again!

My current project is what really took me out of the blog-o-sphere ... I'm working on a household binder. I'm trying to make lists of chores and divide them into daily, weekly, monthly lists. I am tired of typing, however, so this will be for another day! (Lucky you!)

The Valentine Party

We hosted the Valentine Party for our playgroup and decided the kids should do an art project. Brandy, Jen, and Rachel are very patient mothers and allow their children to use things like markers, crayons, and paint. My idea of an art project is stickers. No mess to clean up.

Lubbock has, however, discovered that stickers are delicious. (You can see him trying to sneak one into his mouth in this picture.)

The kids exchanged Valentine cards and Lubbock tried eating his. I'm seeing a pattern with him ... I promise I feed my child!

The Valentines were really cute, but Lubbock ate the one Hailey gave him. I was able to save the one our resident artist made. Brandy placed letter stickers on a card and let Evan paint his wonderful masterpiece. She then pulled the stickers off and there you have it ... personalized Valentines! She's so creative (and don't say you aren't, Brandy)!

The First Ice Cream Cone

It really was such nice weather for one or two days. We met Kevin for lunch and Lubbock got to have his first ice cream cone. I put just enough in the cone to stick out. He couldn't decide if he liked it.

He watched Kevin and just imitated what he was doing. Kevin got down to actually eating the cone part of it and Lubbock couldn't get to the cone through the ice cream. What do you do in a situation like this? Well, Lubbock just turned the cone upside down and ate the cone from the bottom. I probably should have just given him the cone ... he like it much better than the ice cream.

Above his right eye, you can see the result of his independence. He wants to be a big boy so badly and he tries to do everything on his own. He was going up and down the cement stairs in the basement and fell down the last few ... nasty road rash. It's all healed now, but looked pretty gruesome for a few days.

With all the nice weather we had this day, he took a short nap, and we walked to our park. In keeping with his big boy attitude ... he decided to try the tall slide. I was so nervous because the slide is taller than I can reach. He is so brave. He climbed up the stairs, sat down, and pushed off ... laughing the entire way!
I just know he'll be the kind of kid that jumps off the high dive on the first day of swim classes. I was never that brave. I always stayed by the edge and held onto the wall. He must get this from Kevin.

The Familiar Walk

With all the warm weather we had a week or two ago, Lubbock and I were able to get out for a bit. I allowed him to lead me on a walk. I just let him walk and I followed. I made sure he stayed on the sidewalk, but that was really my only rule. He walked south and kept going until we were across the street from his buddies', Eleanor and Joey's, house. (Was that apostrophized correctly?) He stood there starely at their house for a long time and then practically ran across the street, up to their porch, and then knocked on the door. Not loud enough for Heather to hear, though. I called her and she invited us in for a minute, but Eleanor and Joey were at their grandma's house. We talked and then I decided to let her get back to work. As we were walking back to the sidewalk, I looked toward my house and saw a fire engine parked in front of my house!

I really panicked because (foolishly, I admit) ... I hadn't locked my house or even bothered shutting the door. I had no intention of straying so far from home, but I guess Lubbock had other ideas. So, on the quick walk home ... carrying Lubbock ... all possibilities of bad thoughts were racing through my head.

I noticed the truck was running as I got closer, but the lights weren't flashing ... odd. I went inside and yelled, "hello?" No answer. Hmmm. I found Kat and she was fine. I then went to the front door and stared at the truck, thinking about calling the fire station to ask if they were missing a truck. I took a picture (as any good blogger does) and just then saw two fire fighters approaching their truck with drink cups in hand.
Ah! They were simply eating lunch at one of our local restaurants. Can I get an ambulance with those fries?

The Boy That Doesn't Want to Share

One of the things we've noticed in playgroups is that the kids are really starting to have a heightened sense of what's theirs. Lots of "mine" and "my" and crying and pushing and shoving. I think it's a good argument for having a second child. (No offense to all my only child friends out there ... Kevin included!)

Lubbock's face is the reaction to his friend, Evan, wearing "his" cool orange hard hat. Evan kept putting it on and would walk around saying "Bob" ... as in 'the builder.' It was all pretty funny ... unless you were Lubbock.

I guess I can take the opportunity to annouce that we are officially trying for a second child. I think Kevin would say were in the 'not avoiding' category, but I'm keeping track of things and hoping that this time around, it doesn't take almost two years. It does, however, make for very anxious times around here for me. Any slight nausea or bad mood and I'm convinced I'm pregnant. I really should start buying pregnancy tests at Costco (I don't even know if they sell them there, but they do sell them at the dollar store ... how effective a $1 test is ... I dunno).

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Third Goal

I've been super busy working toward the third goal on my list for 2009 ... declutter by 50%. I'm sorry to say this has led me away from my blogging responsibilities and toward my basement.

I am, however, happy to report that I now have internet access in the playroom and may soon be able to write the occasional blog entry while watching Lubbock play with Lego. But ... not until I've completed the last few areas. Currently, the guest room is filled with donations. Perhaps two more trips to Goodwill are in order ... but, not without documenting everything for tax write-offs.

I have also hired a 'home management consultant' ... very weird ... I know. But, I just really feel as if I'm failing in the area of 'housewife' and this causes more stress in the area of 'mom.' And I don't feel like I am able to give my all to Lubbock when I'm consistently stressed about my surroundings. Perhaps a consultant is going overboard and maybe it's something a few more books and television specials could fix, but I'd rather get an outside opinion specifically directed toward me and my situation.

Most websites that I've reviewed offer advice, but don't take into account a 21-month-old or the possibility of a second child in the next year or so. I'm really excited about her first visit on Thursday. I'll try to post on Friday, but I'm getting so much done around here that blogging has taken a back seat for a short time.

Hopefully, I'll be back on the blog-wagon soon ... did I just make up a word? But, dear readers, I'm asking you this ... do you have a weekly routine that you stick to? Is there a daily routine that makes things run smoothly?

Sunday, February 1, 2009

The Super Sweep

It's 8p on Super Bowl Sunday and we're watching the Super Bowl in fast forward because we spent the whole day downstairs 'clean sweeping.' Sigh! Siiiiiiiiiiiiiigh!

I'm typing this on my new laptop! I can't express how nice it is to be able to sit in the same room as Kevin, talk to Kevin, and still be able to type this out. It's really making me feel like I'm being a better wife. And friend.

I really didn't accomplish much last week, so I won't bore you with any detail-filled sagas.

But ... Kevin and I got into a really productive argument on Friday night. I know it's probably not very popular to say this ... but, I actually like it when Kevin and I argue. Because we always reach a resolution. We may have a brief silent-treatment spell, but it eventually reaches a nice end.

I've talked about how I've been sorting through our belongings, purging what I can, but I always got to a point in the pile or box or bag when I thought, "Hmmm ... Kevin might want to look at this" or "Kevin may like to keep this." But, when I approach him about looking at something, it has been a battle.

Last week, I looked through all my picture albums, pulling out pictures I thought were worthy of keeping. I had my sister reviewing them as well to make sure she didn't want some of them. I kept the albums that had pictures from after I met Kevin for him to review. He glanced through them quickly and said to keep all of them.

Did I hear him correctly? Keep all of them. Why? I put so much effort into determining that I didn't need a picture of the two of us with his mom in New Orleans because I had a picture of us with both of his parents. I made sure I had a picture of the front of our first home, but deemed the picture of the living room un-necessary because I had a picture of us sitting on the couch in our living room. His response was that he'd rather see me keep pictures "because they're memories" than two boxes of scrap booking paper.

Oh, no he didn't!

I had organized my paper (in ROY G. BIV-form to be specific) for the purpose of being able to better utilize it in a hobby that I enjoyed, but was never able to do because it took too long to gather all the needed tools! And he had the nerve to say that I should get rid of the paper in order to store pictures? But, I want to make cards, not sit in the past!

We had quite the discussion about how we needed to continue to purge our basement in order to have room (physically and emotionally) to move into the future. Upstairs, we physically don't have an extra room for a nursery when #2 blesses us with his/her presence. Downstairs, we physically don't have room to do our hobbies like card making and carpentry. In our entire house, we don't have emotional room to embrace our current life and enjoy every day with Lubbock because we're battling 'stuff' ... and everything that goes along with 'stuff'.

My feelings were hurt because I felt Kevin wanted to hold onto the past and didn't acknowledge the benefits of me being able to enjoy my present. Kevin's feelings were hurt because he felt like I was trying to discredit the past in an effort to make today more important than it is. We both realized the truths in each other's stances and were able to work together on Sunday in order to make our house a better reflection of our family.

We threw away several contractor bags full of trash, donated one entire Pathfinder-full of stuff, and deemed a couple of items worthy of passing along to friends/family. It was an extremely rewarding weekend and I feel closer to Kevin for it ... even though it started with an argument.