Tag Archives: photos

You know you’re a redneck when…

Alas, the evil pink eye bug has left our abode.  I think the chickens and all their filth scared it away.  You know, germs like it at the top of the filth hierarchy and these chickens have that market cornered.  There was no room for promotion for Mr. Pink Eye so he left to find another clean home to infest.

How are the chickens you ask?  Ok, because YOU asked I will fill you in on all of the latest happenings but don’t palpitate, I promise not to make this a chicken blog.

I think pictures (even crappy ones taken on my cell phone) speak volumes so here ya go:

These dirty (notice the film of dusting on the light? That's mild people) suckers are escaping!

Oh yes they are!  They fly now and the big 50 gallon rubber maid container is an easy escape!

Now, do you notice that there are more chickens than the originally planned eight?  Why?  Well, you see I have become quite the chicken whisper during this experience.  And I just knew (who cares that it is near impossible for the experts to determine) that some of these babies were roosters.  I just knew in my knower that they were.  One look in their beady eyes and I was screaming “I have at least 4 roosters!!”  So I did what any insane reasonable person would do.  I went out and bought 6 sex links (guaranteed hens) for a grand total of 13 chickens (I know 8 + 6 = 14 not 13 but I could only get 7 chickens to start with not 8 so I’m doing the right math but thanks for your concern regarding my IQ).

Here’s another voluminous photo:

Now how did that little sex link escape? If she can do it so can I. I'll just use this water dish as a stepping stone to success!

After waking up to free ranging chickens in my HOME I decided it was time for Mr. Pavlov to get his cute little rear in gear and build me the run.  We have the coop but just needed the outdoor run to complete their palace.  He obliged (and called a friend to help…Thanks JIMMY!) In the meantime, I placed a crib rail over the container halting all future free ranging.

The palace. Sorry to the neighbors down wind of the palace 🙂

Even Diva constructionista is at work! When she works you know she must want 'em chickens OUT!

I’d rather allow the chickens to free range but I’m quite sure that a neighborhood lynching would occur so we decided to build a nice sized outdoor run.  Plus the girls (roosters free to good home) would most likely get into these…

My precious garden beds getting ready for planting!

The weather has not been cooperating and the run is not finished.  Yes, that means the stinky chickens are still in my home although I am contemplating other facilities.  On the positive side, one these things leave, my home will seem imaculate!  I cannot even begin to describe the layer of pentrating dust they create.  It gets everywhere and on everything…think dry wall and you have an idea!

How do I cope?

Drowning out dust, filth and smell one sip at a time!

And Mr. Belvedere helps me cope with the realization that I am becoming a redneck.  You know you’re a redneck (maybe even Queen redneck) when you have chickens free ranging in your home.

I need another sip.

A picture of insanity

Meet the Schnoodle, our new addition

As IF an English Lab and a Chihuahua were not enough dander producing creatures to abide in our home, we took in a Schnoodle (part Schnauzer, part Poodle).

Why?!?

But I need my very own dog! I LOVE her! She NEEDS me and I NEED her!

Sigh, incase you couldn’t figure it out by now I am a sucker for cute, manipulative kids and animals have always had my heart!  Wish me well as we continue to add to our zoo and the “R”esponsibility that comes with it.  I seem to avoid the “R” word until after the fact.  But not to worry, we are responsible pet owners which is why we haven’t dumped our food scavenging, neighborhood trolling, professional vomiting, massively shedding English Lab yet.

Tell me what works for you and your pet zoo.  How do you guys handle the responsibility of caring for your pets and budgeting the expense (those Vets are making the cash $$$!) Oh my, I just realized that we will now have three dogs to find sitters for when we take those elusive family v-cays!!  Yikes….suggestions?  And offing them is not an option – just sayin’

Just another brick in the wall, or not.

I know think I keep Snapfish in business.  Yes, just me and me alone.  No one else.  Just me.

I stock pile all of my photos until I have a mother of a picture load to develop.   As I was going through this mother load I came across this fun end of summer concert in the parking lot (yes Parking Lot not Park because we are that raw) that the Botut crew attended.

What? It's our duty to hold up this wall!!

See a lot of people will die if we don't do our wall holding duty!!! People hug walls.

There were other non-wall holding males there.  Well, they were the performers and kind of had to step away from the wall.

Look Ma, No Wall!

And the cook….he couldn’t wall hug.

Bob making perfection on a grill!

Ok, ok so males aren’t the only wall huggers at social events.  I found a female and Mr. Pavlov was all too happy to admit her into the club.

Welcome to my wall young grass hopper!

And once the euphoria wore off Mr. Pavlov was actually able to watch the concert with his new wall buddy.

And still another female keeper of the wall.

ACTUALLY, I'm not really touching the wall....

In addition to all of the bricks in the wall and music there were other things that caught my camera.

Like wild hair.

Check out these quills!

And child torture.

Pull!!

A cute, sweaty, non-wall hugging male.

Got any A/C on you Mom?!?

And somehow it caught this kiss.

Busted!

And since I was already yanked from the safety of behind my lense, I took up a wall spot with my newly recruited baby girl.  However, I was not ready to be just another brick…yet.

Ok, you're beautiful honey but give me back my camera now!

But as I went to get the camera from my cute, sweaty son I caught a whiff of something and my beloved daughter was there to capture the innocence on his face and the contortion in mine.

Whewf! Where's the Axe now???

I quickly forgot about my singed nasal hairs when I saw two cuties splish, splashing away.

Kids are water magnets!

I have a tendency to get into the photo capturing moment and forget about anything else….like say, safety.  I’ve been getting better and actually thought to look around for electrical wires this time after snapping only one, single, solo photo.  Once determining that the coast was clear for these splish, splashing babes to continue with their puddle play, I snapped another photo.

It's ok, that wire is several feet away...we can still have parking lot puddle fun!

Two members of the Botut crew thought they could slip away.  But the camera always knows.

Huh? What? Us? Going somewhere?

They just kept walking….

Go away Mom!

You can't stop this!

I didn’t even try a counter move because I’m at the age where I would likely displace my bladder.

I decided to take a rest. By the wall.

The heat and the power of endorphins!

I caught a quick glimpse of the TV yesterday (while I was vacuuming and dropping sweat that could fill a man-made lake) as the youngest was channel surfing (yes, he is male and inherited this trait from his father’s gene pool).  The quick flash I saw was of the USA pictured on a weather map and the entire country was lit up red with 90’s and 100’s across the board.  A meteorologist was standing in front of the weather map speaking to the camera and wearing a look of concern in addition to his slightly wilted and crumpled suit.

That’s all I got.  I couldn’t hear him and before I could power down the sweeper and make a request that the little TV dictator keep that station on for a minute,  he changed the channel.  I debated on using my rank to overtake him and seize power of the arc of the covenant but decided to continue working and sweating.

Sweating has been a part of daily life.  But I’m not complaining (thank God for A/C).  Although apocalyptic, I love the heat.  Ok, so this might be a bit oppressive (we live in the arm pit of the world) but I’d rather have this heat than the horrid blizzard of a winter we had to endure.  Actually, I’d rather have my butt planted in Arizona where there is zero humidity.  The humidity is what kills us here.

Well some of us more or less than others.  My middle child, Dos, cannot handle humidity in any form and Mr. Pavlov was birthed and raised in the heat ridden, humid, tropical Philippines.

Dos is a big boy and an avid sport player.  By big I do not mean McHeffer, I mean large for his age.  At 12yrs he is 5’7″ and 160#  The boy is solid.  Think hitting a brick wall and you’ll get it about right.  He is also freakishly strong.  I already cut his hair so I know for a fact that we don’t have any Sampson going on here (and he has also taken sips of fermented drink – another non-Sampson trait).

Thanks to his size, power, attitude and natural talent, he is readily accepted into the sport arena and plays just about everything known to mankind.  I have the mileage on my newer Clown Car (the non-affectionate name for our 5 seater downsize after the death of our beloved Honda Minivan) to prove it.  Currently he is on a basketball league.  Outdoors.  An outdoor basketball league. Clear?  Outdoors.  He had a game yesterday in the 100+ degree hot and humid temps.

My Mama heart was feeling a bit sorry for my big sized baby.  Hey, I still remember the day he was born like it were yesterday.  His head and shoulders are the most vivid of the memories (I will remember them forever!) but he will always be my baby no matter how large he becomes.  So when he came to me all pathetic looking asking if he could sit this game out, I knew my sports crazed kid was suffering from the heat.  Was it truly worth it?  Making a kid who sweats buckets, becomes easily dehydrated and then vomits up the attempts at rehydration play in this dangerous heat index?  The image of him hurling all over the court and the other players sealed the decision for me.  I told him he could remain at home.  Indoors.

Now Mr. Pavlov is a heat eating machine.  I think he possesses a mutant tropical gene that enabled him to live (as in play outdoors) in the Philippines. The man is unphased.  He is also an avid participant in sports and his true love is cycling (think Lance Armstrong as in cycling NOT his true love…just so we’re clear!)

He would sleep with his bike if I permitted her in our bed….but I don’t and she is confined to the garage or on the trainer in our family room.  He cycles 25 miles to work “just cause” and pushes himself regardless of the heat index.  He laughs at the sun and the gnats don’t even attempt to buzz his head, dive bomb his eyes or lodge in his sweat.  They know better.  Mosquitos don’t touch him either (I’m thinkin’ the mutant gene repels them).

He is an outdoor god.  But I’m not quite ready to place an image of him in my garden or erect a totem pole just yet.  Even though these next few pictures are totally statue worthy:

What heat?

Unzipping is my secret for ventilation

Feel the breeze baby!

On basketball day he came home from work wearing similar garb to the above photos.  Yes, he cycled to work, again.  His cycling suit was unzipped (see above)and he was joyfully sweaty.

I wondered how long the joy would last once I informed him that I permitted our heat intolerant child to skip his game.  Without further delay I spit out the information.  Mr. Pavlov looked at me, then glanced at Dos lounging on the couch wearing only his basketball shorts and playing with his ipad (nice presentation Dos!), then glanced back at me.  I waited for the speech about team commitment, keeping kids active and off of brain numbing computer gadgets and TV (Mr. Pavlov is also ex Airborne) but instead he nodded and replied a simple,

“Yea, it is hot.”

I offered Mr. Pavlov a glass of water and told Dos he should be thankful for a little thing called endorphins!

Stalkers can be civilized – it just so happens.

I just finished watching an episode of the Kardashians.  It was on and my weed pulling fingers were too tired to change the channel.  Wait, that sounds really bad.  At least the excuse of “it was on and I didn’t feel like changing the channel” actually worked back in the stone age….the age of my childhood where we had to get off the couch and manually turn the dial (yes dial) to a channel that was not plagued with static.  But weed pulling cramped fingers?  Weak.  True, but weak.

The Kardashian episode reminded me of when we were in NY and we stalked just happened to land in front of the hotel that Kourtney and Kim were staying in.  My oldest was very poised as she posed for this picture, even with her Where’s Waldo Bright Orange Hat brother making faces at her….just trust me, she was.  You can see the evidence of Bright Orange Hat’s presence in the window reflection:

Look where I just happened to be!

We crossed the street to get a better look and just happened to see their balcony and Scott just happened to be out smoking and talking on the phone…just trust me, he was:

That speck by the bush with a cell phone to his ear is Scott (if you click on the picture you can totally see it)...just trust me, it is.

At one point we lost Mr. Pavlov and Where’s Waldo Bright Orange Hat.  When we finally found them Mr. Pavlov just happened to be doing his own civilized stalking.  If you look closely you can even see the drool marks he left on the window….just trust me, he did.

Now this is worth the trip and spit!!

And where was our middle child while all of the civilized stalking was going down?  Playing it safe.

Honest officer, I don't know those crazy stalkers. I was here the entire time...just trust me, I was!

It just so happens that we didn’t cause a scene even with the Bright Orange Hat.  We took our pictures and quietly left like good little civilized stalkers.

Just trust me, we did.

Happiness is when the tooth fairy takes her dementia meds

This is worth at least $5

Continuing with the dental theme, Tres just lost another tooth (proudly displayed above).  I can’t keep up with this kid.  He laughs out teeth.  He sneezes out teeth.  He coughs out teeth.  Ok, not really but they are dropping faster than my aging skin.  And these baby pearls come with a high price tag.

Remember when .25 cents was the going rate and anything above was a massive bonus?  Today kids expect green backs…paper…dollars (plural!)  I learned of this fact by evesdropping listening to a ball field conversation where a few kids were discussing their tooth fairy earnings….earnings that could be claimed on a 1040EZ!!

But this tooth fairy’s kids are happy for whatever they find under their pillow because this tooth fairy is incompetent.  The incompetence grew worse with each child and sadly, Tres didn’t stand a numerical chance.  She often forgets about the tooth and day after day her kids awake to the [now stinkin’] tooth under their pillow.  So when the tooth is finally replaced with whatever she can scrounge up, elation is the emotion in this house.  The dejected “She didn’t come again…my tooth is still here…I think she has dementia!!!” is replaced with “I got a quarter!!!!!!! She came!!!!! She took my tooth!!!!!  Whoo-hoo she must have taken her dementia meds!!!”

We also do other things like attempt to capture the developmental moment…..

Holding a tooth penny and refusing to show the missing teeth

I won't smile.

Not gonna happen...my teeth are "private parts!"

I could claim mad genius.  I could say that it was the tooth anti-inflation master plan all along.  And when they blame me for ruining the reputation of the imaginary characters of their youth I just may.  But for once my disorganized, forgetful ways paid off.

I am not super mom.  I am not the organized, crafty type.  I am not Martha Stewart.  I am imperfectly human.  I dig in dirt without gloves and get dirt under my finger nails.  I make a mess, daily.  I live, laugh and love hard….

…and I forget about the teeth under my kid’s pillows.

From feeder fish to fun

My last post dislodged some thoughts.  I seem to experience mental constipation a little too frequently and memories/thoughts that are not routinely used are tightly compressed.  Blogging is my mental laxative.

And my most recent explosive blow involves trips to the dentist.  Remember those?  Am I the only one who experienced a cardiac standstill at the mere mention of the word?  The dentist struck terror in my heart.  I shook.  I prayed for deliverance.  I grew pale and clammy.  I went into shock (they just didn’t know that it was shock back then).

I didn’t always react like that.  During my first trip to the dentist, I was like a feeder fish in a tank of piranhas.  Back in the day we ate what we wanted.  We brushed our teeth when we wanted.  Dental hygiene wasn’t a big deal to us until the teen years.  Parents weren’t total freaks like we are now.  So it was no surprise that I had my share of cavities.

During my first dental visit, I smiled an innocent smile (bearing the evidence of the chocolate Hershey bar I had moments before ) totally unaware of the horror that awaited.  I climbed into the big, weird-looking chair that reclined sending my spit to conveniently pool in the back of my throat cutting off my air supply.  If the lack of oxygen and bronchospasms didn’t do me in, then the dental machinery (high power cheek and tongue sucker, drills, pic axs, high pressure water hose, mirror too large for my mouth, needles, fluoride inserts, big, ungloved dental fingers) did the trick.  Many times my mouth looked like the Edward Sissor Hands of the dental world.

After the mouth rape I was lead to the receptionist’s desk where a large, red fluffy box filled with cheap bling lived and stood in unbelief as my beloved Mother scheduled another appointment to return to this house of horrors.  The receptionist flashed me her pearly whites and informed me I could pick out a piece of cheap plastic.  Imagine how my poor brother felt.  Because they only offered rings, he either had to man-up and forgo a prize or connect with his inner pretty princess.  I guess that was their attempt to make the dentist’s office seem fun.  We just traumatized you but here….have a ring that will turn your finger green or break within 24hrs!

Today my kids have a very different experience with the Dentist.  He is one of their favorite people.  We brush.  We floss.  We practice excellent oral hygiene and as a result they have had almost no (my sugar loving girl had one) cavities.

But we can’t take all of the credit.  The Dentist office is a very different place today.  It is….more….child friendly.  Gone are the big, scary experiences and machinery.  Today we have “Mr. Thirsty,” a.k.a. the high power sucker, “Mr. Squirts” a.k.a. the jet stream water hose and “Mr. Tickles” a.k.a THE DRILL.  I don’t think that the name “Mr. Tickles” adequately captures the sheer experience of the drill.  But hey, if my kids are under the impression that he tickles then who am I to inform them that his tickle will electrocute their brain, travel down their spine and curl their toes.  Mr. Tickles it is.

They also have cool props to make the visit more fun.  Check out Tres, our youngest “Star.”

Cool shades to prevent the blinding from the oral interrogation light

Counting and checking:

No Edward Scissor Mouth here!

And lastly “polishing” a.k.a brushing!!

Polishing sounds so much more fun

Here is older bro, Dos getting ready for his turn.  Check out the face:

I'm next! Yay!

That face sums it up.

Prizes even a boy can enjoy!

Trips to the dentist have come a long way and so have the prizes!  Good-bye feeder fish, hello fun!!