Partisanship Begins At Home

on Tuesday, February 24, 2009

We just walked in from having dinner at a local restaurant, you know, doing our part for the local economy and getting me out of having to cook dinner tonight. A win win. We walked in and I was reminded that our President is addressing the Congress tonight. So I quickly went to the TV, tuned into ABC and was gratified to hear my 4 year old son say, "That's Barack Obama, my President! I voted for him, Mama. Why is he on here?"

I explained that he was talking about all the good things that are coming for our country and all the things we need to do to help our country move forward.

He looked at me and said, "I think you voted for John McCain, didn't you, Mama."

I said, "No...didn't you go into the booth with Daddy and vote for John McCain?"

He said, "No Mama, not me, I voted for my President, Barack Obama" a whisper..."the winner."

Cracked me up.

Crikey - She's Barking Mad!

on Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Auds at Barking Mad is... truly barking mad! She is giving away a $250.00 Target gift card in honor of, well... she's barking mad!

Jori-O, of Musical Monday fame, turned me on to this insanity and when I win the $250.00 gift card, I'm going to pick up a thank you card and express my appreciation!

Here's Aud's need to highlight 5 or 10 of your own favorite posts! And to that I say" Only 10???"..(cough, cough)...but then I remembered and decided it'll probably only be 6. here it goes!

OK! Now let your fingers walk you over to the Barking Mad lady who is giving away all this crazy money and show us your favorite posts!

Musical Monday: Tell It Like It Is

on Sunday, February 15, 2009

Hot on the heels of a Valentine's Day full of great old movies and equally great snuggling romance I MUST choose Aaron Neville's Tell It Like It Is for Musical Monday!

OK. Let me coach you on how to get the most out of this song. Please follow these directions EXACTLY. Turn the lights down in the room you are in. Turn up the volume on your PC. Push play. Close your eyes and let the beginning strains of the music and Aaron Neville's super sexy voice reduce you to puddles.


This song is equally effective when you are feeling put out by your lover and are driving to ...say...the grocery store. Even in a mini van - this song played at the top decibel and sung at the top of your lungs will help heal whatever ails you. Aaron Neville is killer good stuff!

OK. Now it's your turn! Go over to Jori or Diane's and join in Musical Monday. Link up and tell us what's moving you!

Musical Monday

Current Status: Bathing Optional

on Friday, February 13, 2009

There was a time in my life when I showered daily. I would wake up from a full 8 hours of sleep feeling refreshed and excited about the day to come. I'd get in the shower enjoying the warm water and fresh smell of soap! I'd then take time to dry my curly head of big hair. I'd apply makeup and look like...well...a girl...a freshly scrubbed, twinkle in my freshly mascara lashed eyed, bright cheeked woman! A fresh smell and a bright smile my signature. (yes..I brushed my teeth a few times a day too!)

Oh, those were the days. I remember it like I was yesterday...but it wasn't wasn't the day before, either. That's my point. I'M NOT BATHING DAILY!

Don't judge me.

When, exactly, do we as women and mothers abdicate our rights, yeah...I said it...RIGHTS to shower daily..and when do we start believing that being clean is a luxury rather than a necessity?

I know women talk about bringing a new baby home and not finding time to didn't happen quite that way for me. Sure, it was hard to find time when I brought my little guy home, but I took the time to take care of myself and showering afforded me not only cleanliness but a few minutes to myself. No, for me it didn't start right away, the transition was quiet, insidious...a choice. It was when the little lady made her appearance and two kids, full time work (from my home office), playdates, parent participation preschool, doctor appointments, breakfast (every morning), lunch (every afternoon) and dinner (every freakin night) kinda became more important than...umm..well...bathing. It became a feeling of...well...I can either get to the doctors, feed the family, sleep...or I can shower and coif.

It's like a perpetual stinkin camping trip...and I'm really roughing it!!!! (I'm really a concierge level, 5 star hotel kinda gal)

I've made many attempts to reverse this madness. I've made promises. I've taken small steps. I've promised my spouse. This week...I am going to shower. every. single. day. It's bad enough to disappoint myself, but to see the sorrow in his eyes (I need to take a moment)

(deep breath)

I've made promises...and I've broken them. Every vacation I swear that I will jump back on the daily showering wagon only to fall short of my goal and go back to the smelly depths of my despair.

Well, tomorrow, as they say, is another day.

Authors Note: As of the posting of our story, our damsel in smelly distress has managed a shower, she's powdered and coiffed. She's entered a 12 step program and is promising to stay on the bathing wagon. We will check back with her occasionally to check her progress.

Chicken Mystery: Solved!

on Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My four year old son explained the magical mystery behind getting chicken on our table.

Here's some back story to our own family nightly ritual....our own little version of Groundhog Day!

I make dinner....always something I know the kids will enjoy. My son has a lapse in memory and starts convulsing before he gets to the table demanding that he be heard:"I WILL NOT EAT THAT! EVER!" I explain in my calmest Italian American fashion that in fact, he has eaten this particular meal before and he loved it. I insist that he sits down, he insists that he will not be seated at a table that is hosting such a disgusting meal. His manners go from bad to worse and he is asked to vacate the premises and go warm the stool in his room. He cries. We wait. He calms down. He's invited back in the room. He tries the food. And he smiles and says, "Mmmm...this is good. My favorite. Mama, did you make this just for me because you know I like it so much?"

This is the point where I realize that God make children to be so beautiful and charming because if he didn't....they wouldn't make it past the age of 4.

I'm exhausted by the whole exchange and he's ready to open a bottle of Chianti and settle in for the night with a good meal.

So tonight, I decided to cut out the middle man when he approached the table. In an effort at a premptive strike I told him that he's eaten the meal, I know he thinks its vile, but in an effort to move things along...could we please bypass the bad manners and trip to his bedroom and just try the freakin chicken!?!?! He smiled and complied. And he said, "Mmmm...this is good. My favorite. Mama, did you make this just for me because you know I like it so much?"

Not having wasted all that time...we had time for some good conversation along with the Chianti. Here's how it went:

Little Man: Mama do you know how Chicken gets to our

The Me: How, Babe?

Little Man:

Well, the Chicken Rooster spits out chicken.

Then the farmer mixes the chicken and puts it on a train.

Then it goes on a boat.

Then it goes on a truck.

Then it goes on another truck.

Then it goes into a store.

Then we go buy it.

You cook it.

Then we eat it.

Just like that.

The Me: Chicken Rooster, Babe?

Little Man: Yep, a Chicken Rooster spits it out. Mmmm..this is good.

Musical Monday: At Long Last Love

on Monday, February 9, 2009

OK, Kids! Here's an early Valentine for you on this Musical Monday!

Musical Monday

I was born in 1969...I'll wait while you do the math...and grew up loving all kinds of music from classical to WHAM! to U2, but my parents are the ones who tutored me with the classics...Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Louis Prima and all the other greats. (do you see a nationality trend with these guys?) What feelings the strains of these songs evoke...usually happiness...sometimes longing for days spent with family as a child and always, always, joy.

My song to share today is Frank Sinatra's "At Long Last Love"! This is a song that my children ask us to turn up in the car and causes them to jump with joy at the bursts of the horn section during this classic. For me and My Guy...this is a song we dance to whenever possible, sing to each other and remember how lucky we are to have found each other...with JOY! Thank God it was AT LONG LAST LOVE!

Now...turn up the volume on your PC....sit back...and enjoy....listen to the whole gets better and better!

Ahhhh..that's what moves me! Now go check out Jori-o's and Diane's pick on this beautiful Musical Monday! What moves you?

The Best Kind of 30 Minute Meals

on Wednesday, February 4, 2009

This post it for all the people that struggle with Rachel Ray's 30 minute meals (that includes The Wife).

I was thinking of this the other day while I was playing with play dough with my daughter. You see play dough is one of her favorite pastimes of late. I being the ever available sous chef to my daughter's expert cooking prowess managed to put together what I have determined is the ultimate 30 minute meal. THE PEPPERONI PIZZA!

You start with blue play daughters favorite after pink. You roll it out thinly and then proceed to carve out a large circle (10 minutes). Then you need toppings for your pizza, namely pepperoni colored. You then smooth out a thin layer of red play dough and then shape out the appropriate sized pepperoni (10 minutes). Your final process involves naming off family members as you apply each"this one is for nonna...this one is for momma.." etc (10 minutes). Nonna will be glad to find out that she received the most pieces of pepperoni in this process.

Being my daughters sous chef was the thrill of the day for me. How could Rachel Ray beat this experience and our record breaking time? :) I'll bet she would have never thought of the Mickey Mouse pepperoni!

Kindergarten: High road or low road

on Monday, February 2, 2009

We are in the process of choosing a kindergarten for Little Man, my 4 year old. Without putting undue pressure on us...this is the single most important decision we will every make for him barring any other. We could, by choosing incorrectly alter the course of his life and put him on the path to mediocrity - or by choosing correctly encourage and nurture the man who will cure cancer, or become a train conductor. (he's already promised to let us sit in the front car with least once.)

Is that undue pressure?

(insert scream here)

HOW DO YOU CHOOSE? Private? Public? Catholic? Homeschooling?

My husband was a "public" as they were dubbed by us "privates" (being called a private doesn't sound very inviting now that I see it in print). He claims to have had an "OK" experience in school and doesn't feel it hurt him in any way. He's not quite sure it helped him, but it certainly didn't hurt him. I, on the other hand, was given the "greatest gift a parent can give " (this is a direct quote from my mother) by receiving 12 years of Catholic schooling. I can honestly say, all joking aside, that I do appreciate that my parents made the supreme financial sacrifice of putting me and my siblings through private school. To this day, my handwriting is better than any "public" I know. Beyond that, at the time I was in Catholic schools, Catholic schools in my area were head and shoulders above a public school education. But not only that, it was important for my parents that we were getting religious education every day of the school week.

Flash forward 20 years after I left the halls of my last Catholic school and new we have all sorts of options as far as schooling our children.

  • We can homeschool, if we are so inclined. There are so many resources out there for the homeschooling Mama that it doesn't even really seem like homeschooling...but a kinder, gentler, organic and exciting way to learn. Pros/Cons - Sounds wonderful, but the reality is that he would basically continue to have me as a teacher and quite frankly...he deserve more.
  • We can choose a non catholic private school, which with a hefty price tag will tailor the learning experience to your children's likes and dislikes and encourage their passions. That sounds really good. Isn't that what I've been doing thus far at home? Pros/Cons - we get to spend what we were planning on spending for their entire college education on his first year of Kindergarten.
  • We can go totally public and send our child down the street to the corner school, which has it's benefits and which has a GATE program which promotes and supposedly teaches to your child's level. (Isn't it obvious that any child of mine would be in a Gifted program???? :) ) Pros/Cons - Most people we know are going this route...but I have no faith in the public school system.
  • Or we can go Catholic, which is where my comfort and safety level lead me. (12 years of Catholic school also lead me here) But will he get good academic training along with religious training? I don't necessarily want a man who has FAITH that his future is secure but can't read past grade level 3. For my parents, it was important that prayer be a part of our day and that faith be taught. The schools I attended did their job, as did my parents, because a foundation of faith is important to me, too. Pros/Cons - If we send him to Catholic school, my mom will stop giving me dirty looks every time we discuss sending him to public school but I will have to start a daily novena that we have made the right decision.

I'm so confused. We want to give our son the best academic experience available. We want his opportunities to be abundant. WE DON'T WANT TO SCREW IT UP.

We've already signed the little man up at our parish Kindergarten. I've also put his name on lists at public schools in the area. September is looming. (OK, yes, I know that it's only February...but it feels like it's LOOMING!)


Writing Exercises - 28 Day Program

Once again I am taking the NABLOPOMO challenge. 28 days - 28 posts.

It's all about discipline.
(I can't even type that without smiling and laughing at myself.)

Let's see how it goes. OK. Good luck, everyone.

Musical Monday: What If I Loved You?

on Sunday, February 1, 2009

Not exactly the question you want to be asking on your wedding day...but you know...the song was swinging so we went with it!

Musical Monday

When I married My Guy, it was a bit of "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" meets every heart wrenching farewell scene in every cheesy movie you have ever seen. We married on one coast with my big fat Italian family and I moved to another coast. ALONE. Err. With My Guy. But ALONE! In my family, if there aren't 10 random cousins in your house. YOU ARE ALONE. Anywho, as far as wedding songs went, the last thing I needed were a series of wedding songs that would tear my heart out. Soo.....we went with an upbeat song that was sweet enough to melt our hearts everytime we watched "Return to Me" ONE OF MY TOP 10 FABU ITALIAN AMERICAN MOVIES OF ALL TIME! But the melting was not a was a smile. So we moved around the dance floor with the three steps we learned at our one dance lesson and WOWED the crowd...err..or at least ourselves.

The following is the only clip I could find....

So, ladies and gents, I give you our wedding song "What if I Loved You" by Joey Gian from the movies "Return to Me".

I still get teary eyed every time I hear it and remember that sweet day!

Now go check out Jori-o's picks at Jeff & Me + Three and show us what moves you!