MamaChef's Random Writings

Name:
Location: Tennessee

I'm 29, and I still will be on my birthday this year!!! I swear it! My darling husband and I have been married for 7 years this year. We have two great kiddos: a 5 year old son, and a nearly 2 year old daughter. The are the most beautiful kids in the world if you ask us! I work at home, 2 jobs, one is developing curriculum and other publications for a disability ministry. By night I am a Pampered Chef consultant. I love both of my jobs, and I love that they are flexible enough for me to stay at home with my kids.

Monday, May 30, 2005

An Answer to the Madness

I've been in a rather dark place off and on for the
past few months. It's usually only temporary, for a
few days, and then I'd be fine again. I'd be pretty
jumpy, easily agitated...to the point of emotionally
snapping a few times, tired, and my outlook on life,
mostly friendships, is very bleak...sometimes I'd just
want to pack up my things and leave for a few days.
I've suffered some abandonment issues, felt like I
didn't have a friend in the world! On that note, after
talking to J about that emotion, he's agreed that some
of our friends have really separated themselves into
cliques, so maybe I wasn't completely off there!

Anyway...Yesterday, Sunday, was probably the worst day
for me, emotionally, in a LONG time, probably since
high school. A lot of what I coped with in high school
was due to an emotionally abusive boyfriend, and once
I got rid of him, life was a lot brighter! Yesterday I
seemed to have an out-of-body experience. Things
started out OK, I ended up staying home from church
because A-baby had been sick, J went on, and when he
got home, I asked if he could help me out with a few
things. He begrudging agreed, but the attitude I thought I saw
in him really set me reeling! Now usually, this would
not bother me as much as it did...I'd express my
frustration at his attitude, we'd come to an
understanding, and the rest of the day would be
better. Yesterday I was angry, and things just went
downhill from there. C-man seemed to not listen all
day, and I screamed at him a few times, not the norm
for me, at least not at the level that I verbally
attacked him. A-baby cried for what seemed to be half
the day, she's been sick after all, and I think
teething and having some growing pains. Usually I'd
just comfort her, and we'd be fine with life. I was
unraveling at the crying very quickly, and it seemed
like nothing I did helped. In the evening, I escaped
to the grocery for about an hour, but when I came home
I found A-baby had knocked over the gate and was in the
kitchen eating dog food again, and J was back the
hall on Xbox. I HAD HAD IT!!!! I yelled at him, made
the baby cry, threw groceries around the kitchen and
came very close to kicking the dog. Now, for anyone
that knows me, a downward spiral like this is very
abnormal behavior!

I cooled off long enough to eat dinner and start the
kids on their baths. Once I got C-man in the tub and
scrubbed, I went to rinse his hair, he started fussing
as he hates having his hair rinsed. BUT, the attitude
threw me over the edge. I yelled at him, finished
rinsing his hair, threw the towel at him and left the
room, and him crying. J came in and took care of the
rest and I went and locked myself in our bedroom,
crying, for quite awhile. By then I had come
completely unglued...I didn't know what was wrong,
couldn't control my emotions anymore, and wanted to
just shut everything and everyone out!

I've never felt so out of control, and it was very
scary! I felt like I was on the road to crazy and
fearing a trip to the loony bin. Later on, J and I
had another frustrating moment over folding laundry
and a back rub and we spent the rest of the evening
not talking...SO not what I needed! After he went to
bed, I got on the internet and started some research.
I spent about 2 hours reading websites and message
boards found out about PMDD: Premenstrual Dysphoric
Disorder. Basically, it's PMS times 100! One of the
sites that made me cry again because it explained me
to a 'T', that I'm not a complete wack job, and the
remedy could be very easy...the symptoms I found are
stated as follows:

"Women with PMDD complain of irritability, anger,
tension, marked depressed mood, and mood lability
(crying spells for no reason, verbal outbursts, or
tantrums ) to such a severity that quality of life is
seriously compromised. In addition to these symptoms,
some women complain of lethargy, sleep disturbance,
limited concentration and a host of physical symptoms
such as breast tenderness, headaches, joint and muscle
pain, bloating and weight gain.

The primary symptoms that distinguish premenstrual
dysphoric disorder from other mood disorders (i.e.,
major depression) or menstrual conditions is the onset
and duration of PMDD symptoms -- with symptoms
appearing during the week or so before and
disappearing within a few days after the onset of
menses -- and the level by which these symptoms
disrupt daily living tasks. (This diminished level of
functioning is generally in great contrast with the
same woman's interactions and abilities at other times
during the month.)"

It all really matched up to what I had been
experienceing. As I began to track back at some of the
breakdowns I'd been having, they were all lined up
perfectly with my monthly cycle. All the backsliding
would start about a week before my period started, and
end after my first day. I plan on tracking myself the
next couple of months to be sure, but so far, it all
adds up! From some of the message boards I've been
reading on, most women are able to control a bulk of
the problem with diet and exercise. I haven't been
exercising regularly, and I really need to pick that
up again. The month that I did pilates regularly, I
felt like a different person...maybe I need to pick
that back up *hint, hint*!

I printed out a couple of things and showed them to J
this morning, and he was kind of stunned, didn't
really know what to say. There was some of the info
that talked about suicidal tendencies along with the
depression, believe me! things in my life have not
led me to swoop that far into a funk! He was really
worried that I had gone there, but I assured him that
I hadn't. He asked what he needed to do, and I told
him that I just needed his love and support, and most
of all his patience when I'm getting close to "that
time", and that if I went so far as to seek therapy,
that he would be there to support my decision and go
with me if I ever wanted him too. I also told him that
I really need some more "ME" time. He's been working
so much overtime lately because of the campus
retreats, and other things, that I've not had a moment
to myself, without the kids, except to go to Kroger or
Wal-Mart, in months. I don't think that's helped things so much,
and I think it would help keep me from unraveling
quite as much. I think most of his "avoidance" of the
situation at hand yesterday and at other times, was
his trying to stay out of the line of fire! AND I
think the definition of "free ME time" is that he is
totally fine taking some time to play Xbox or watch a
movie at home...for me, my def. of free time is going
out by MYSELF to shop, or have coffee with a friend,
getting a spa treatment, etc. All of the above take
money or coordination with another person, as well as
coordination with Jeff's schedule. He's not against
me doing things by myself, the stars just never seem
to align at the right time.

Anyway, I've also read about some over the counter
suppliments that I can try (St. John's Wort, B Vitas,
5-htl or something like that), and I'd like to try
them before I seek professional help. My insurance
doesn't cover a ton of the costs for therapy, even
with a referral, and we just can't afford much more
debt in our life. I want to try some of the things
I've been reading about today, and see how things go.

But anyway...that has been the monumental discovery of
my weekend. How's your head? That's a lot to digest!
I'm better today...I think it's just brought a peace
of mind to me that I may know the answer to a lot of
situations now, and there are things I can do about
it. I've got good people all around me that will
provide support and encouragement. That's a real
comfort.


Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Rage against the Hormones!

ARG!!!!!!! I swear I feel like I'm going to snap at any second now!!!! I've been snapping at everybody this week and I feel awful about it! My husband, my kids, my mom...and it always seems like everyone is that much more annoying, even if they aren't really. I really just want to go away by myself for a few hours, or lock myself in the bathroom with a nice hot shower or bubble bath for awhile. But in order for the aforementioned treats unto myself, I have to have the cooperation of my husband, and currently he feels that he deserves some free time to himself when he is home. Now, I understand that he is working late and all that because it's Sr. Saints retreat season, but I'm working just as hard as he is...I'm home all day with the kids, I've had an unusual number of PChef shows lately...none of which I'm complaining about, I just want him to see things from my perspective as well. Especially when he's home, he's not supposed to just shut life down when he comes through the door, I need his help. And when he's just sittin' there watching tv or playing Xbox and NOT doing diddly, it pisses me off WAY big!!!! Not to mention when he comes home for lunch and leaves his mess for me to clean up...I love my dishes, and there aren't going to be many of them left if I keep slamming them around in frustration. And when mama ain't happy, everybody better LOOK OUT!!! I'm a woman with PMS, hear me roar!!!!!!

OK, end of rant...I just needed a second to get that off my chest. Now I've got to go work on our budget, now THAT is some quality fun time people!

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

It's Just One of Those Days....

I know I'm supposed to have that "monthly visitor" in a day or so, and I'm pretty sure that's why I've been having the moodiness and the blahs, but I really hate feeling like this!!! I've been craby with my family, and have been having some of that "woe is me" garbage as well...it really just sucks!!!! I got on the scale this morning and wanted to cry, last night I was feeling like I wanted to string my kids up by their toes and kept snapping at them, and I was having one of those "no one wants to talk to me or do anything with me...I have no friends!" moments...which is all bogus. But that's how I get every month! I need to know how to control this better!!! I think a nice hot bubble bath would help my mood immensely!

Monday, May 23, 2005

My Week...

Last week was pretty much filled to the brim. I didn't slow down at all! I was drained enough by this weekend, that I had too much caffine, and didn't get enough sleep, so I'm still tired! Maybe if I drink a couple of gallons of water today, then I'll neutralize the caffine enough that I might sleep good tonight? It's worth a shot!

OK...so last week was filled with basically 3 main headings: Intern Training, Star Wars and Pampered Chef...not necessarily in that order, but kind of! Anyway...Last Sunday afternoon the Power Ministries college intern team converged upon my home and the JBC campus for training. We had a good time, took them to the mountains one day, we had a sled hockey coach come by one night and everybody got to try on the gear, seems like everyone had a really good time...nobody griped and complained, so I'm seeing that as an improvement over last year! Yeah, last year's team fussed because they didn't think that we had enough things planned for them, and I could have just pimp slapped the scowel right off of them...I was 8 months pregnant for training last year, cleaned my friggin house for them, and had a hot breakfast every morning for them. Do you think I cared that I didn't bus them all over knoxville for entertainment? HA!!! They were lucky I didn't sit on them! So, yes, I see last weeks retreat as a raving success!!! And the fact that everybody talked to each other, asked questions and brought up ideas to help everyone else was great, and when we had guest speakers come, they appeared interested, and asked lots of valid questions, etc. I think we have a really great team! I'm excited to hear from them after the first camp session this weekend.

OK...then there was Star Wars. As I mentioned in an earlier blog entry, we attended the midnight showing of Star Wars Episode III...my first midnight showing of any movie, so big new experience for me! J ended up going with our friends at 8pm that night so they could get in line in hopes of landing some great seats. Since the interns weren't leaving until the next day, I wanted to stick around until a little later so that I could spend some more time with them. I ended up leaving my house at about 10 that night, after we sent the interns to the dorms and I got my kids in bed. I called the group that left early a couple of times, and I kept hearing things like "OMG!!! There are some crazy people out here tonight!" Hubs said he figured that a few of the "mega fans" spent close to $1000 on costumes!!! By the time I got there, a lot of them had taken off costumes because they were getting so hot. There were several fully robed and masked clone troopers, snow troopers and Chewbacca's. The costumes I got to see were basic Jedi's, Padmae's and such...costumes that breathed a lot easier! And of course there was a local radio and TV station in attendance, giving away door prizes and getting the crowds excited. The movie was great, and this coming from a woman!!! I enjoyed it, and managed to escape without getting weepy, which is nearly unheard of from me! I have to mention that I've not heard so much audience cheering and jeering since Passion of the Christ came out last year. People reacted at EVERYTHING...that was amusing! Bottom line: a good time was had by all. Hint to those of you having not seen it yet: The ending is not happy, however, you pretty much know that going into it if you have any knowledge of the old and new movies. This bothered me for awhile, even though I was prepared going into it. Just thought I would pass that along...brace yourselves!

And finally, for the Pampered Chef. My director is pregnant, and has been passing along some shows to me recently. This has been great as I've not been working PCHef a whole lot lately in the attempt to get alot of PM work done. So, Tuesday night I had a show...way out in the friggin STICKS!!! I was driving down dirt and gravel roads to get there! I get there, meet the woman and start setting up. As I was about to pull one of my stones out to start the prep work on one of the recipes, the stones tip over and fall on top of each other, shattering 2 of my favorite stones....before the show even starts!!!!! I nearly CRIED!!!! It was awful! I managed to still be able to prepare the recipes and gather my wits enough to complete the show, but I was still a little beside myself, and I can't say as it was my best show performance wise. I pulled in about $80 for myself though. Once everyone was done eating, there were still about 4 guests left, it was getting dark, and as I mentioned, I'm way the freak out there in the middle of nowhere...they start talking about local politics and road construction. Now these are ladies of the elderly persuasion, and they tend to really gripe when it comes to politics. I had to find a polite way to interject my departure so I could get out of the sticks before it became completely dark. I have a feeling I could have been there all night had I stayed! Friday night I had another show. Because of all the chaos from the week I had neglected to remember that Hubs had to work this weekend for the Women's Retreat on campus. Thursday night my hostess called and said that she already had $938 in outside orders...now, at this point I'm thinking, there is NO WAY IN HADES that I am canceling on her because I don't have anyone to watch the kids!!! I start calling people and finally find a friend who owed me some babysitting...as luck had it, she was free!!! This show was amusing since there was a good bit of alcohol flying around, and a room full of women talking childbirth stories! Seriously, it can get crazy!!! The final tally for that night was $1287. As I figure it...I'll have a check for about $500 for this month for only 8 hours of work....that's $62.50 an hour! How awesome is that?????

So, that's my week...that's where I've been hiding! Now I'm just counting the days til I get that paycheck in my hands. Granted it's going right into building our emergency fund, but it WILL be nice to look at! And I may just deserve a little bit of it for some fun money...I think that would be OK!

Friday, May 20, 2005

Waxing the Nostalgic

I was watching some stuff we recorded on TiVo tonight, and I saw where TBS is showing "Pretty Woman" sometime within the next week or so. How much do I love that movie??? Kind of alot!!!!!! So, I'm workin on a list today....my top favorite movies, 10 years or older...not in any particular order:

1. Pretty Woman
2. Dirty Dancing
3. Benny and Joon
4. Breakfast Club
5. Sixteen Candles
7. Princess Bride
8. Breakfast at Tiffany's
9. Gone With the Wind
10. The Cutting Edge

What places tops on your list????

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Star Wars is my Life

Sweet Jesus, resuce me! I've been sucked in!!!!

Some of y'all know how much of a Star Wars addict my husband is, as are 95.7% of his friends. Each time one of the newer movies has come out, he has been in line for the midnight showing. The night before we got married, he and his groomsmen went to see Episode 1, and then back to the hotel to play Star Wars Trival Persuit. Granted, there could be worse things for a guy to do on the eve of his wedding...strippers, bar hopping, I'm forever greatful that it was Star Wars! When the 2nd Episode came out, I was out of town, and he went with our best friends. I spoke with them via cell phone at about 9:30pm while they were in line...oh the weirdness of those more addicted than they are that I heard on my end of the conversation! So, now here we are hours away from the opening of Episode 3, and I have to say I'm getting rather excited myself. I KNOW!!!! STOP ME PLEASE!!! We have alread Fandango'd tickets for the midnight showing, we are going with a whole group from church, I even landed a sitter (ironically, my parents are in town, it couldn't have worked out better!)!!!

Only problem now...I'm TIRED!!!! I was way out in the boonies doing a PChef show last night, and ever since then I've had massive sinus issues. So I took drugs, and I was so loopy earlier, I couldn't even talk straight! And I've got to go meet some ladies at the church in an hour to pick up our supper (they've been cooking for our intern group...hey, at least I haven't had to do all the cooking for 10 people!!!). So, I'm off to try to pretend like I'm going to nap for an hour, because later tonight before I leave, I've got to get creative and think of something fun for the interns to do! I love my week!!!!!!!!

Friday, May 13, 2005

Living Vicariously

Wanna know my guilty pleasure? People Magazine! I am a sucker for cover stories. When Laci Peterson made cover, I had to buy it...Julia Roberts gives birth...heck yeah!!! I will sit there and read it from cover to cover, and then have conversations with J and my best friend about the articles I have just read, like I know these Hollywood celebs personally! When Jen and Brad split, my heart ached, when Gweneth announced the name of her baby, I blanched and had the "why in the heck?" conversation with K. Why you might ask? I really don't know! It's just one of those things for me...when the new edition comes out, and I'm walking down the asile at Wal Mart or Kroger, I cannot refrain from grabbing it. So, I got one last week, I don't remember who was on the cover for that one, but what really caught my eye was that Tom Cruise is currently dating KATIE HOLMES?!?!?!?! How are y'all feelin' about that one???? She's like yonger than me, and he's a few years older than me! Not that that matters and all, but it's just such a strange match in my head! The other article, and it may have been the main headline, was the Runaway Bride...she is finally checked into the nuthouse, and who can blame her poor family. The movie was pretty cute, but this chick...oh my lord! If I were her fiancee, I'm just not sure I could stick around after that. There would have to be some MAJOR hiney kissin' there before I could feel it within myself to forgive and forget! But that's just me! But anyway, these are just my opinions...I am not an expert, nor do I play one on TV!

Well, I have a house full of guests this week. It is intern training time for Power Ministries. Always lotsa fun, but I'm always glad to have my house back by the end of the week. We are going to be running around like mad today, and then I have a show tonight. I'm gonna be chugging Rockstar drinks like crazy today, because I found them at my local KROGER!!! WU HOO!!!!! Thank you to the rest of the numbers for turning me on to these, especially our own personal Rockstar herownself...they are going to be a lifesaver, and a quick drain to my budget...but hey, it pays to stay awake!!!

Onward and upward off of this chair I need to go. I will post more stories of my crazy week later.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Somebody Turn My Head Off...

Good lord!!!!! I have been run through the ringer this week!!!! So, Sunday was Mother's Day, which was fine...I had a really good day! J and the kids got me a Mother's Ring with my birthstone and the kid's birthstones, and it's really really pretty! Now we've just got to get it off layaway. And J came home from church with lunch and flowers for me!!! I was pitiful sick, but much happy with the surprises!

But anyway....for Mother's Day, I got sick, and not just a little sick! It was just whatever the head congestion that's been going around, but it hit me like a ton of bricks. I sneezed so much and so hard that my ribcage hurt! And on top of that, J works, so I had to be at home, by myself with the kids all day for a couple of days, so I was tired and fairly wasted on deongestant too! Not to mention, the kids were sick on top of it all...so the kids were pretty miserable as well. Not a week to repeat for quite awhile, that's for sure! Yesterday I was starting to finally dry out, but I woke up with a decent sinus headache, and had it ALL DAY LONG!!! And when I get this type of headache, it just sucks my will to live. My eye sockets hurt, my teeth hurt and I was nausiated...I seriously wanted to yank out my eyeballs!!! I know, gross, but by 10:00 last night, that seemed like the only thing that was going to work. I kept taking medicine every 4 hours, different things every time. Finally, like at midnight last night, I found one that worked! PRAISE GOD!!! Today I'm a much happier woman! I still have some recovering to do, but I feel SO much better!

And since I was felling much more bright and chipper today, I went out to Wal Mart, after depositing the husband's pay check, and bought not 1 but TWO pairs of way cute flip flops, nail polish and sunglasses!!! OOPS!!! I think I blew my budget for the month! Oh well, it made me feel real happy like...and I've just been inspired by the fashion queens Lola and Allie!

I HAVE to put in a plug for the Darth Mix M & M's!!! LOVE THEM!!!!! They are my alltime favorite, dark chocolate!!! And great colors to boot! Go out, partake, enjoy!

Thursday, May 05, 2005

The Joys of Motherhood/Adulthood

So, you've all heard the stories regarding my children aging by another year. Well, today we, or rather I, got the privilege of taking them to the pediatrician, by myself! Normally, this isn't a big deal, however today had me especially anxious. RAH! First off, A-baby was having a follow up from her last visit so that she could be weighed and measured again. Sounds rather standard right? Well, it would have been except that at her last visit they basically told me she was too small...riiiiiiight! Now, if you have any inkling of how they measure children, you will understand my frustration at this revelation from the doctors. The charts that they use only COMPARE children to other children their age...there's not much scientific to the height and weight charts! If she had not grown to their liking by today, then they were going to test her thyroid...YEA coming from the parents there! Fortunately, my daughter rocks, and she put on some pounds and inches! GO BABY! For those of you that know me, this whole debacle didn't really upset me, it just pissed me off in that my family, nor my husbands, are much on the tall side of things. The women on both sides are petite, which is OK...it's just making the doctors understand this is a whole 'nother story! But I digress! She's walking, she's eating like a horse, she's doing just fine!

Now for the fun story...my C-man's experience at the doctor. The appointment for him was his 4 year check-up. Normally no big deal...EXCEPT that every 2-3 months for the past 10 months he has been with me at the dr. when his sister is getting shots, so he has had it ingrained in his head that doctor's office=shots! The WHOLE 30 minute car ride today he told me, "A's going to the dr. I not going to the doctor, I not get a shot mommy!!!!" He was very adament! We get in there, and I'm explaining to him that they are going to listen to his heart, look in his ears, everything's going to be OK, and Mommy's here! And then the nurse wants him to take his shoes off so he can be weighed, well, to any 4 year old, if you have to take your shoes off, basically that means they have you forever! And that was the first melt-down! The second came when the nurse had to prick his finger to draw some blood...that one I understood. We looked for anything to talk about to distract him for 5 minutes...what did you get for your birthday? What color is the floor? What's your favorite TV show? Are there boogers in your nose? ARe they in your ears? I kid you not! Whatever we could do to make him not cry and wiggle. That survived, next came the stripping down to the underware! This was a little trickier, as he had already put his shoes back on, and Abbie wanted to be nowhere but down toddling around the room! So, I'm wrestling with a 10 month old and a 4 year old, and you'd have thought I was stringing both of them by their toenails! I finally got C-man down to his undies, but he refused to put on the "cool" paper gown (can't say as I blame him!)! The dr. came in looked both of them over, gave them both glowing reports (and who wouldn't???). And then came talk of the dreaded "vaccinations". We finally decided that either we'd need a whole fleet of nurses, or we could wait for A-baby's 12 month appointment in 2 months and hope that J can come with me. There was no way that I could have controlled both of them for that, nor do I think my body would have held out! I decided that I needed a treat tonight and broke out the CoffeeGoddess coffee as a pat on my own back for surviving the crusade to the pediatricians office!

I have to say though, aside from situations such as the above forementioned story, I couldn't be more proud of my kids. They are beautiful, sweet as honey, and completely hilarious! Yesterday we decided to do lunch at Quizno's, J and I are sitting there talking about the morning, C-man and A-baby are chowing down, and Caleb opens his mouth to say something to us, but much to everyone's surprise, out comes this man sized belching that echoed through the whole restaurant! It was by far the loudest sound I've ever heard come out of him! I tried to be all serious and scold him, but I could hardly supress the giggles. J was trying to be all authoratative with deep voice and all, and failed miserably. I KNOW everyone had to have heard it, and I didn't know if I should be horrified or just go with it! All I could do was laugh though! It was pretty stinking hilarious though!

A-baby on the other hand though, has a really bad dog food habit. We're looking for a 12 step program for such an addiction, but have not found one yet. (if you know of a place, could you please drop me a line? :D) Now that she is so mobile, she thinks she has full reign of the place...who wouldn't I ask? Anyway, the way that our house is made, the living room and kitchen just kind of merge into one extended room, so there's no great way to gate the two off from each other so that she can't obtain the mouthfuls of dog food. Reason that we usually leave the dog food out, is because our pooch kind of grazes off and on throughout the day...I guess we could control that problem, it's just there's enough other things going on in the day that I just don't think to pick up the dish. We have finagled a few gate type contraptions that we've suspended between the wall and the recliner, but she has found a way to break out of all of them so far. She's a quick one I tell you! And what in the name of all that is holy is so great about the taste of dog food? I just don't know!

As for the joys of adulthood...I had to stop myself the other day. Yes friends, I was excited about debt! Not being in it, but getting out of it! Yeah, I realize that this is a good thing, and once you get out of it, it should be rightly celebrated! We are getting ready to begin a class at our church called "Financial Peace University", and I am totally excited about this! I'm like "new outfit" excited about starting this class! It's scary, and it just kind of stopped me in my tracks the other day. What is life coming to? I'm gettin' all growed up and stuff! Please don't let me go for the mumu's, or the white socks with brown loafers!!!! I just couldn't live with myself!

Monday, May 02, 2005

1 Down, 1 To Go!

Well, I survived! This weekend was NUTS!!! C-man's birthday was last Thursday, and that's the day that my parents came in town. I, of course, saved all of my cleaning for the day that they got here. So, I got up super early, cleaned like a maniac until they got here, but I still wasn't done! We were having C's party that Saturday, so I felt that it was necessary to clean EVERYTHING!!! Oh yeah, and Aunt Flo decided to pick that day to come and visit for 5 days too! That just added to the level of emotion! Friday we did some running around K-town, mostly Wal-Mart to pick up the last minutes to get ready for the party. And THEN, J and I ACTUALLY got to go out on a date!!! My lovely parents baby-sat so we could DATE!!! That happens like once in a blue moon anymore.

Saturday finally got here. We were up early, of course...the kids can't stand to sleep much past 8am anymore. I started cleaning as soon as I got the kids fed. Then mom and dad got here and we went out for lunch and to do the last, last minute running. J and I had picked out a new Hutch for the Kitchen a couple of months ago, and had to get it off layaway this weekend. As soon as we got home, which was at about 3:30 (party was at 6:30!!!), he determined that it was essential that he put it together RIGHT THEN! Okaaaaaay!!!! So, mom and I are finishing up the cleaning and shifting things around the kitchen to make a space for the hutch. C-man was supposed to be taking a nap, but was way to excited about his party and never slept a wink. At 6:20pm, J and B finish the hutch....just as the first guests appear at our doorstep! I rush them in the house real quick so as not to get run over by the newly finished hutch..."Come in and don't ask!" I said, my friend Heather replies with a "Oh but I think I might have to!".

Within about 10 minutes our house filled up with about 12 3,4 and 5 year olds. Oh, yeah, we were supposed to have the party outside as it was supposed to have cleared up by then...but no, it was about 55 degrees and raining outside. Along with the dozen or so kids, were 1-2 parents each. I think we were way far beyond fire codes in our house. Now, since the weather was so crappy, at the last minute my mom and i had to figure out an activity to keep the kids occupied. While at Wal-Mart, we found these sheets of foam and sticky foam shapes, animals, etc. We tossed the aforementioned materials in the living room floor and said "go to town!" For about 20 minutes the kids were quiet and busy. One set of guest arrived during this time and were shocked at how quiet it was in there! It's not often that you can keep a group of kids that age that quiet!

After about 20 minutes they got tired of sticky foam, and converged upon C-mans room and toys. Once the level reached too many decibels, I decided it was time for cake. That seemed to appease the masses. Now, C picked his list of guests, and he also picked his party theme. It was a Spider Man, Thomas the Train and Star Wars theme! Yup, we did all 3!!!! He loved it! And there was something for everyone! So, we passed out cake and ice cream, which lasted about 10 minutes, and they were back in action! And then it was time for presents. OK, I swear, everyone suddenly thinks it's their birthday when it comes time for presents. I was trying to sit with C and help him with the presents, and kids were crawling up my side! I had kids grabbing his presents trying to open them themselves! C-man was just in a zone...open, view, toss!

When it was about the time that everyone started going home, C-man started to panic...he didn't want his friends to come home. He begrudgingly said thank you and good bye to everyone, but not without a pout. That was acutally kind of cute! Thankfully, we all survived the chaos of the weekend. We turned 4, and we seem to be doing OK with that....now for the continuing saga of Potty Training...another story for another day...

One more birthday to go. A-baby turns 1 in just under 2 months now! I think we're going to stick with a simple family party for that! I don't know if I can do another one of these for another solid year!!!