Potty Mouth

Potty Mouth

So, I come from a non-Christian background. Cussing was a no-no for a child but when you were older, it was more generally accepted. I grew up hearing lots of cuss words. I bet I know them all. That being said, I make a concerted effort not to cuss. (I love the word cuss, though. Say it out loud. It sounds fun, doesn’t it? — In fact, I love in Fantastic Mr. Fox when they use the word cuss instead of cussing.)

I make up other words in their place.

“Fudge!” is one such substitution. It kinda sounds like the word it replaces, unfortunately. I’ve been saying it for a long time. Finally Hubs asked me one day, “Do you use things you like as your cuss words?”

A light bulb went off and I realized I have a lot of different euphemisms at my disposal. Here are a few.

“Baby toes!”

“Yarn!”

“A clean house!”

“Emptied dishwasher!”

“Sunny day!”

“Glass of red wine and a hot bath with a Better Homes and Gardens magazine!”

That last one would be a bit long, but if I had stubbed my toe, for example, by the time I was done it would hurt less and would also effectively be my “count to 10” exercise. Brilliant!

What are some things you love that you would shout at a moment of anger/pain/exasperation that might lighten your spirits?

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The Lone Mom

The Lone Mom

Warning: I’m going to be frank. So, yeah, get over it.

When it finally sank in that we were going to have another child, I think I assumed the house would feel fuller and more alive. Instead it feels pretty empty. I feel ground down. I’m constantly taking care of someone else. When I do take time for myself it’s to take a shower. I’ve never gone without makeup this much. Whenever I have time to swipe on some concealer and mascara I think, “Whoever is lucky enough to see me today better feel pretty damn special. I’m putting on makeup.” Ditto for real jeans instead of yoga pants. Do not tempt me with your pajama jeans. I will cave.

Some of the worst times are when I’m running myself ragged trying to get everything done and Pint-size gets up, walks over to me, crosses his arms and purposefully sticks out his leg and taps his foot, “Aren’t you forgetting something?” and has this smug little look on his face. Some moms I’m sure would think it’s the cutest thing in the world. It makes me want to… I don’t know…go to Disneyland.

I’ve always felt like having a baby is a pretty lonely place to be, especially in America. A friend of mine told me that in India the new mom-to-be moves back in with her mom and dad three months before the baby is born and stays with them until the baby is about three months old. In the US it’s like we say, “I need my space, leave me alone!” Seriously, think of some of your friends, it’s probably not uncommon for them to be hundreds of miles away from their parents and any support. We, personally, live at least 50 miles from both sets of parents. Every time we go see them it’s like packing for the Oregon trail. And considering how many times we’ve gotten sick these past couple of months (and sometimes centered around our visits) I wouldn’t be surprised if we got dysentery.

I know there are other moms out there who feel the same way I do. Keeping a 5 year-old from picking his nose, a 7 month-old from eating the kleenex box, coaxing Pint-size to eat his veggies, trying to get BabyGirl to sleep through the night again. I feel like I’m fighting an avalanche. Everything is beating down on me and is determined to be the victor. I’m not defeatist. I’m not being whiny. Well, maybe a little whiny. I just hope there are other moms out there who think, as their child is dancing around and whacking himself in the head with a whoopie cushion, that they just can’t seem to catch a break. That maybe, just maybe, God slipped in some Cosmo DNA.

Baked Spaghetti

Baked Spaghetti

My mom shared a good recipe with me recently. I don’t mean to brag too much, but the way I made it, with some minor changes…it came out great!  Here is my recipe.

Baked Spaghetti

2 cans of diced Italian-style tomatoes
1 can of tomato sauce
1 cup water
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp (ish) salt
1 1/2 tsp season salt
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp basil
1 lb ground chuck
1 lb Italian sausage
8 oz angel hair pasta
1 cup grated cheddar cheese (fresh grated – this is critical)
1 cup grated colby jack cheese (also fresh grated)

Directions

In a stockpot combine tomatoes, tomato sauce, water, onions, peppers, garlic, garlic powder, seasoning salt, salt, sugar, and basil.

Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and let simmer, covered while you prep the rest.

Crumble ground beef and sausage in large skillet. Cook over medium – high heat until fully cooked, with no pink remaining. Drain the fat, then add the ground meat to the sauce, keep simmering.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook pasta according to directions…for the least amount of time noted. You want it al dente before adding it to the dish.

Cover the bottom of a 13 x 9 pan with sauce, add a layer of pasta, then cover with part of the cheddar cheese. Then sauce, pasta and cheddar and colby jack cheese. Repeat until it’s full, ending with sauce. Bake in oven for 30 minutes. Top the casserole with the remaining cheese, return to the oven and continue to cook until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

My husband is not a huge fan of spaghetti night, but when I unveiled this beauty, he LOVED it. He actually ate some leftovers the other day for lunch. It was THAT good. 🙂

Give it a try and let me know what you think!

I do things the hard way

I do things the hard way

Apparently, I like to do things the hard way.

  • I exclusively breastfeed, which means that my baby has to be close to me at all times, I can’t go out much, I don’t get many breaks.

I exclusively breastfeed, so my daughter has the perfect food. I’m setting her up to have a healthy weight the rest of her life, she’s operating in perfect harmony with her GI tract, I get to bond with her like no one else can. I have the ability to produce more than enough milk, which means that I never feel stressed about if I’m “making enough.” She is happy and her needs are met. 

  • I cloth diaper. (Is cloth diaper a verb? It is now.) Which means more laundry, the danger of leaking and my baby’s got back.

I cloth diaper. I have saved at least $200 and she’s only 3 months old. She doesn’t have any problems with diaper rash. I’m being “green.” I do use disposables at night and sometimes when we’re out and about, but that’s because I’m not crazy.

  • I watch kids while I stay at home. This means more noise more snacks, more diapers, more spit up and a little less hair on my head.

I watch kids while I stay at home. I make almost the same amount I would have been bringing home if I had decided to stay at work and put both kids in daycare. (Thank God I don’t have to use daycare!!) BabyGirl has a friend (a week older than her) that comes over one morning a week, which is… challenging. But when they get old enough to play together, it’s going to be so much fun! Pint-size loves having his friend over to play everyday after school. It keeps him stimulated and having fun and I don’t have to hear, “Mommy, can I watch a video?” all the time. Yesterday, Pint-size asked why his friend wasn’t coming over and I told him his mommy got off work early and was at home with him. He slumps in his seat and says, “Moooommm, I’ve been waiting for this playdate FOREVER.” “You mean, since yesterday afternoon?” “FOREVER, Mom!”

  • I pack Hubs’s and Pint-size’s lunches everyday.

I pack my husband’s and son’s lunches everyday. There’s nothing like opening a lunch that someone else has packed for you. I remember loving to open that lunch pail or paper sack and seeing my mom’s love all over the sandwich, chips and cookie she put in there. It’s a hassle to pack lunches, but it saves us a beaucoup of money (which I think is pretty obvious I’m crazy about). I love knowing what Pint-size has eaten (I always get the leftovers, if there are any, in his box) and controlling what he eats. More fruit, more veggies, more balanced meals.

  • I grocery shop with kids.

Just so I can feel  alive.

I guess I just like doing things the hard way.

The Laughlady: Mother of Two

The Laughlady: Mother of Two

It isn’t easy. I’m sure most of you knew that, but I value honesty. I’m not going to say, “I can’t find my hairbrush, I haven’t blow-dried my hair in a week, I don’t know what’s for dinner, our budget’s a wreck (I’m the nerd, Hubs is the free-spirit), and the most I can hope for is a trip to Walmart – but that’s, like, totally awesome!” I am going to say, “I didn’t realize it would be this hard. I didn’t realize I would have to entertain a 5 year-old for 14 hours a day and would feel like a terrible person for putting him in front of Netflix for a portion of that. I didn’t realize that I wouldn’t be able to knit more than four stitches a day. I didn’t realize a baby could eat this often. I didn’t realize that I wouldn’t feel a huge amount of accomplishment at the end of every day, because I didn’t really do anything.” Well, enough about that pity-me crap. Let’s look on the bright side. I jumped in with both feet on May 23. I left my job to be home with my two kids. We’re going to be joyfully broke, but I am raising my kids, I’m breastfeeding my daughter, I’m using cloth diapers (we’ll talk more about this later.), every once and a while I knit a couple of stitches, and my marriage is solid. That’s pretty good. I also (sort of) make dinner every night! And I actually try a new recipe about once a week.

Laughlady Mother of Two
Anniversary

Anniversary

May 2005

“Someday someone will walk into your life and make you realize why it never worked out with anyone else.” –Unkown

January 2006

“If you live to be 100, I hope to I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you.” –Winnie the Pooh

March 11, 2006

“Kiss me and kiss me again, for your love is sweeter than wine!” –Song of Solomon

November 2010

“Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.” –Ruth

Happy Anniversary, Man Beast. I love you.

My Ring

My Ring

My ring is pretty special. In February 2006 my husband came into Gamestop, where I was working at the time. I remembered it was a slow night, already dark outside. He had just come from work and looked like he was…blushing! He always has this great little half smile when he comes to see me. I think it’s because every time I see him I smile. 🙂 Yeah, we’re dorks.

I remember exactly where we stood as he handed me a little red box. Inside was a fuzzy black ring box. I opened it up and inside was my engagement ring. I remembered telling him, “at least ask me or get on your knee!” Heh. He didn’t have to. We had been engaged for several months. I remember going into the jewelers and saying we have X amount, what can you show us? We bought it with cash. We’ve always had trouble with living beyond our means and we have credit card debt, blah blah blah, but this…this was special, we never had to make any payments on it. It was ours. We found the perfect ring with a dream cut diamond, wonderful clarity (I can’t remember the letter it was, but it was darn near perfect). We also found the wedding bands, super simple, just our taste. My dad even mentioned when I was wearing it that it was just right and that it was clean and simple and pretty. (and being an unabashed Daddy’s girl, I was very pleased). He brought me the ring while I was at work because he didn’t want to delay even an hour for me to get off work in order to give it to me. He brought it straight from the jewelers to me. This little detail makes me blush even now. He couldn’t wait to say I was his.

I don’t remember when Chad officially asked me to be his wife, but it was really early on. We had agreed that we wanted to get married, wanted children, etc. We also got matching “promise” rings from James Avery that we starting wearing in December 2004. We new after dating for two months, the search was pretty much over.

Chad used to, instead of always saying he loved me, would say, “Five and a half.” It was my ring size. He used to say it because it was a reminder that he knew my ring size and that he wanted to put a wedding ring on my finger one day. He did it all the time. I would get all giggly and blush, and I LOVED it.

I knew we were getting married, we had a date, we were working on the invitations, the decorations, I was wedding shopping, but the ring made it official. When I slipped that ring on, it was done. He wanted me and he had reserved me as his. No one else could have me. I was taken. I breathed a sigh of relief when I slipped that little band on my finger. It was mine forever. I have worn it every day for almost five years.

I took off the ring last night. Not because I’m not married anymore, of course, but because my fingers are swelling!! I knew it would happen, but last night my fingers were feeling particularly chubby. Sigh. Pregnancy swelling. Sheesh.

It’s still my ring, and I’m still wearing it, albeit on my necklace, but it makes me sad. It’s weird not wearing it on my finger right now. My finger feels…wobbly without it! Lighter and also, wrinkly. It’s all pruney and weird.

Stupid ugly finger.

Laughlady signing off! XD