I’ve been oogled…..

I was sitting at a stop light the other day  during my daily battle … I mean commute … with the commute to work.

I noticed the gentleman in the car studying his rear view mirror quite intently.  It was at that moment I realized it was me he was studying.  My first thought was that at my age, I should be a little flattered.  Then I just thought “ewwww that old guy is oogling me.”  He was definitely a midlife crisis in a convertible if I ever saw one.

I sat there pondering that thought for a moment when I realized he was actually the age man who should be oogling me …  …  I guess that is just another one of those things I’ll have to get used to.

I’ve never been one that has gotten oogled (that’s a word my best friend and I call a “shellyism”) too much and dang it when I do, it’s wake up call!!

And, as an afterthought to yesterday’s post, here’s a picture of that sweet moment of my children in the pool.



A rare moment….

I was trying yesterday to no avail to get my daughter to pick up her shoes and dirty socks from my living room floor when my son came running through, picked up the socks and said “do I put ’em in the laundry room?”

I was astonished – not only at the mere fact that he picked up those stinky socks but he did it happily, to his own accord.  Then, on his way back through the room, he grabbed the equally stinky volleyball shoes, headed toward the stairs and proclaimed, “Sissy is my best friend.”

WOW!!   I love it.  I’m not sure if she was bribing him or if he was trying to butter her up for something.  Either way, I just love it!!

A few minutes later they went out to the pool, hand in hand.  After a while I took a quick peak out into the backyard to see what they were doing.  They were smiling and laughing.  My daughter was holding her little brother, making faces at him and doing a very good job at entertaining them.

I was one of those rare moments you don’t ever want to forget.  They were both lost and involved in just being together.  One of those rare moments free of sibling rivalry.  A stranger looking in would have seen the sweetness that only their mother can truly appreciate.

Now, as I sit here writing this, things are back to normal.  I can hear stomping, doors slamming, my drama queen yelling “mooooommmmmn” and my sweet 5-year-old proudly proclaiming to his sister “you have a very big butt!!”

Still, just gotta love it.


What is real?

In my vegetative state this Monday evening, after children were fed and what little energy I could muster for laundry and housework was spent, I sat mindlessly watching TV.  I surfed through the channels for just a few moments and out of desperation for anything better to watch, I settled on Nashville Star.  Nothing of substance here, but I admit it was mildly entertaining.  I do say that occasionally, I like to watch television that requires no thought.  And, “Nashville Star” required me to think very little.

However, in the course of about 10 minutes I sat through commercial after commercial for one “reality” show after another, some I had never even heard of.  I’m sure many have asked this question long before I have when it comes to the endless absurdity of what today’s television has resorted to … but what has the world come to?  What is reality?  I know it can’t be “The Baby Borrowers”, “Celebrity Circus,” “Dancing with the Stars”, “Big Brother”, “The Bachelorette”, “Rock of Love” or any of the other dozens of today’s reality TV shows.

I’m ashamed to admit (and this is closely related to yesterday’s post about guilty pleasures) that I’ve watched several of the aforementioned shows and many others.  Okay, I guess I rarely want to think when I’m watching TV.  All too often, TV is used just for background noise at my house and rarely do I sit down with the intention of paying attention to it.

Do these shows leave others with the question:  “What is real?”   In my quest to “get real” I certainly do not care who can fall in love in the course of one six-week series, or who can dance the best, or who can make the biggest fool of themselves on “America’s Got Talent,” and I don’t care who is smarter than a 5th grader.  I’m certainly not dumb enough to believe that most of these unscripted reality shows are actually not scripted.

In my unscripted life I’m actually trying to get real and focus on the things that really matter … taking care of my children, not worrying about the unimportant stuff and actually “making it” from one day to the next.  I admit, I like to escape in the ridiculousness of some of these television shows.  But, now that I look at the dozens of them on today’s television line up and realize how really far out they’ve gotten, I’m not sure what I’m trying to say here.  Maybe it’s just “GET REAL!”



Guilty pleasures … and Grease is still the word!

Good morning!

Guilty pleasures … we all have them.  I have a few, well quite a few … too many to list here.  I guess probably my biggest is cheesy movies.  I LOVE THEM!

I watch all of what I call the “junior chick flicks” with my daughter.  She’s 14 and I’ve been doing it for years. Yes, I love “The Princess Diaries” and yes, I know all the words to “High School Musical,” both 1 and 2. We are eagerly awaiting the premiere of the third install in the HSM saga. 

Both my children and I sat in anticipation Friday evening as we watched the timer so cleverly placed by Disney Channel execs in the upper right hand corner of our television screen countdown the minutes and seconds to the premiere of “Camp Rock.”

Of course I do have the real guilty pleasures.  Those cheesy movies that are much more refined, much more mature and age appropriate.  The list is long,  but my favorite — “Grease”.  I’m sure all those “Grease” aficionados know what I’m talking about.  The music, the characters…doesn’t it just take you back?

I was in sixth grade when “Grease” was released in theaters. I was so excited, I couldn’t wait to go see it. At the the time, the costumes, the characters and the music were “so cool.” Even more exciting was the day I got my “Grease” album.  I could already sing every word and the album just allowed me to sing in front of the mirror with accompaniment and my very own background singers! (Something I would never, ever do now! )


Now 40 (ugh, gasping for air),  I can still sing all the words to each song. “Grease” is definitely still the word!  My best girlfriends and I recently took our daughters to see a local theater company’s production of “Grease.”  I think they enjoyed it as much as we still obviously do.  I think we may have embarrassed them a little as we sang .. at times loudly … to each song.


That afternoon in the theater brought back memories of sitting in my sixth-grade classroom on the days our teacher would allow us to bring music to school. I got my brief 15 minutes of fame as I was the first in my class the have  the album (my daughter once told me she knew what a record album was …. “A really big CD that they listened to in the old days”) and we spent many a Friday afternoon listening to it.


My friends and and I had a “reunion concert” of our Grease favorites yesterday evening.  We were all gathered for the 10th birthday of one of the gals’ daughter.  When the younger girls tired of the karaoke machine, we did it!  We broke out the karaoke version of Grease.  Our daughters were once again driven to hide in shame in the corner as we sang and danced.

Soon they too will learn to appreciate the guilty pleasures of “Grease.”

Well have a good day.  I have homemade bread in the oven and it is smelling quite yummy.


Letting go…

I spent my early morning hours yesterday at the airport sending our second exchange student on her way home.  It didn’t get any easier this year. It was like watching a part of me walk away, knowing that most likely, I’ll never see her again.  She’s spent 10 months in our home so she’s become “one of ours.”  I know it’s selfish of me to not want to send them home to their own parents. 

As I sat in the very same airport last June, watching another student sob and tell me how much she was going to miss me, I thought to myself how I could ever consider doing this again.  Yet, the glutton for punishment that I am, just a short month and a half later, we had a bright Ukrainian student who began calling us “Mom” and “Dad” right away.  As I was watching her leave yesterday, I was already counting the days until our “new” daughter arrives, go figure.

This year’s experience has taught me many things.  Mainly, what to watch for as my daughter gets older.  At 14, she hasn’t yet begun to cause some of the issues our 16 year-old-exchange daughter did.  All teenage girl stuff for the most part, but it’s already sent me into “full alert” mode wanting to stop my child from making some of very same mistakes.  To be completely honest, I think it’s more to protect myself from the worry and frustration, as well as the total shock at what they do sometimes.

I knew from the first act of defiance to the final “knock down drag out” between she and my husband in the airport as we were trying to get her boarded on the plane, that she was part of our family and always will be.

With all that said, it really has been a good year.  We truly enjoying welcoming students into our home.  It’s been good for us as well as our children.  And, as an added plus, we have children all over the world now.

Night all.  I promise something a little more clever, or at least entertaining in my next blog.

Back to the 80s

I read a post recently about the 80s.  I’m aging myself, but it really took me back.  I still love to listen to 80s’ music.  My daughter actually shares my taste in music and listens to quite a bit of the 80s’ stuff herself.

We spent a recent evening downloading clips of what she calls the “oldies but goodies.”  Gee…. I hate the fact that now what I listened to in high school is considered the oldies!!

My daughter had 80s day at school a few weeks ago, so we had a great time trying to figure out her wardrobe for the day.  (This was much more my speed than trying to tell her what they wore in the 50s.  She’s still not convinced I wasn’t alive then.  Of course, Mom predates everything, right?.)  And true to character, Taylor informed me of 80s day about 12 hours prior to needing the outfit. But it was doable.  She wound up looking something like Flash Dance meets Debbie Gibson, or maybe even Punky Brewster. Either way, she looked pretty cute and she was satisfied.  Her outfit was complete with – I hate to admit it – some huge green earrings that still call my jewelry box home.  I don’t <shriek> wear them anymore, but some things I just haven’t been able to part with. 

Now I’ve got Debbie Gibson tunes going through my head. 

But for now, since I have to be up at 4 to take our exchange student to the airport, I think I’ll call it a night.

But before I go, here’s a pic of my daughter on 80s day.  Being a child of the 80s and a Texas gal, I think she needs bigger hair!



Saying goodbye

Well, it’s 11:58 and if I don’t write quick, I’m gonna miss another day of blogging.

It was a really busy weekend and I feel like this is the first moment I’ve had to sit down.

In just over 24 hours, we’ll be saying goodbye to our second exchange student.  It is so bittersweet.  She’s been with us for almost a full year and it’s very difficult to say goodbye.  I feel like I’m sending my own child away for good. I still feel the emotions building up when I think of last year’s student and our tearful goodbye.  Now, I must do it again.  But, like I said, it’s alittle bittersweet.  Our “exchange daughter” has been quite a challenge the last month or so.  I hate to see her go, but I’m a little relieved to be sending her back to her own parents.

I just hate that she’s leaving after the few bad weeks we’ve had.  Hopefully, between now and her 5 a.m. flight on Wednesday, we’ll have a chance to talk.  I really want her to know how much she means to us and what a great experience, for the most part, it’s been.

And if it’s not bad enough, we have another student arriving in mid-August.   I’ll have children all over the world before it’s all said and done.

I’ll have to write more about our experiences later.  For now, I’m tired!  I have to be up for work in a few short hours.