Friday, May 20, 2011

Belated Mother's Day Post

Whoops. I fell behind. The story of my life I tell ya.

Riddle House, Oldest on M.I.
I'll have to backtrack to Mother's Day. Garen did a dang good job of ensuring I had a good day. He deserves a post praising the fun I had with my family. I'll try to keep it brief though, since it was a while ago now.

West Wing
For Mother's Day I got to head off to Mackinaw Island with my family. Usually, I don't get around to doing the tourist stuff in the towns I live in, so it was a treat to go and check out the (what I thought would be) overhyped and overly expensive island. The ferry ride was free for the day, and we were also given a free ticket into the Butteryfly House.
The WHOLE House
The ride over was freakin' frigid. I don't know how I spaced how cold it is on the water. I grew up in that environment... but we froze all the same for the 18 minute ride. Once we got there the kids wanted to see horses. The island doesn't have cars. Just horses. Which are awesome, I admit, but Lillie was totally lost on the dang horses.

Butterfly in Lillie's Hair
We checked out some shops, walked around the main street and some side streets. We found a really old and tiny post office and the oldest building on the island.Then we settled in for some lunch. It wasn't an amazing lunch, but edible.

Hayden Holding Said Butterfly
After we ate we headed down towards the Butterfly house. To get there you pass a few private residences and bed and breakfast places. I found one house that looked huge. I took a picture while Hayden read the sign. Then after listening to him I realized I'd only taken a picture of a WING of the place. Here I thought this was a HUGE house, and it's just a huge WING. That was nuts.
Fort on M.I.

The Butterfly House was a hit for both Hayden and Lillie. I hate bugs. I hate bugs that fly, even pretty ones... but I sucked it up and went inside. I'm glad I did. The kids were loving every moment and even got to touch a few of them. One landed in Lillie's hair and got stuck. Hayden got it out.

Officer's Quarters
After the Butterfly house we headed up to the Fort. Here I thought it would be some campy recreation of a fort. Nope, it's the real thing. A lot of the spaces are still in tact, behind glass. It was really awesome to read about these people, how they lived (How some died) and how TB effected them, and how medical practices worked. (I've now seen how bloodletting worked). There were real cannons, gun demonstrations, and a cannon firing.
Lillie and I in Jail

The school was cool, but the officer's homes were the best, in my opinion. Lillie and I even got locked in Jail. Garen couldn't resist shutting the door and locking us inside. And then he left. No joke.
Oh he knows he did good

After all that, we made our way back down to Main St. Lillie STILL wanted to see the horses so Garen went and flagged someone down and got her a nice little ride. While they did that I snuck off and bought 2.5lbs of fudge. I cannot eat all this fudge... but what I can eat is AWESOME!

So there ya have it... My awesome day at Mackinaw Island for Mother's Day. Thank you Garen, Hayden and Lillie. I feel special and loved.

Here's some other shots from the day:

Freezing on the Ferry

Lillie on the Ferry
School House

Hayden on the Ferry
Fort in 1880s
Fort Today
View from the Fort
Old buggy
Hayden outside a Restaurant
Lillie @ Lunch showing us how butterflies go
Post Office, which looks suspicously like a house :)


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I'm At Work

Therefore, I should be working... but there isn't a lot to do right now. It's storming outside, there are no customers inside, and I already set up my workspace just how I want it... only to have it magically revert to it's orginal layout once I left for lunch yesterday... So I am opting out of that fight. But seriously, what does one do during the day when there just isn't much to do?


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Counter-Terrorists Win!

If you can really call us that anyways...

This particular post deals with the response to the death of Osama Bin Laden. My friend Dechion and another member of the blog community Big Bear Butt have also committed posts to this view. Their opinions are different than mine, and I do not mean to offend them. I found their works to be rather thought provoking as well. I encourage you to see their opinions... if you're into political and moral debates. If not, walk away... quickly... 

 I rarely have to put one of these before something I write. However, this post will touch on topics of extreme sensitivity, and subjects of mass debate. If you are easily offended by discussions on politics, religion, Osama Bin Laden, terrorism, Military or any other of those "Shhh you can't talk about THAT" subjects, I advise you to walk away. My opinions are often either really harsh, really from left field, and sometimes laced with rather inappropriate humor. Also, I am generally long winded. After this break, you may read on, and have your own opinion. I encourage you to share it. I however will not tolerate hate posts, general ass-hatery or nonsense. You have been warned.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Perception Vs. Reality

That title almost sounds like something out of "Inception". I assure you, this is nothing like that. However, I often wish I either had been dreaming, or that what I dreamed had instead been real. This two situations tend to have a 50/50 existence; meaning, I tend to feel both situations roughly the same, not one more often than another.

For example, I dreamed that having a job, going to school, being a busy soccer type mom would be fanciful. I dreamed it would be easy to be busy; to have places to be; people to talk to... The reality is I'm usually very overwhelmed, disorganized and always out of time.

However, on the flip side, I wish I'd dreamed up some of the situations I've found myself in when it comes to my perception of people, neighbors, friends, relatives; people I often have high hopes for, expectations of, and invest incredible amounts of trust, effort, energy and emotion into. In these situations I tend to find myself severely let down, disappointed and even angry. I'm sad to say that in one case, I perceived a person incorrectly in at least one area of their life... which sadly ended before I knew better, and I'll never get to tell that person how sorry and how wrong I was.

Of course everyone aspires to make their dreams their reality. Generally I don't dream big like owning a mansion on some tropical island somewhere with pool boys named Pablo. I dream of simple satisfaction, of knowing what I want and how to get it. Of loving relationships with friends, family, and maybe even strangers. Sure, I wish I could cure all cancers, rid the world of intolerance, bring justice, find God, and make millions... but for now I'd settle for getting through a whole day where the kids did their chores, homework, didn't fight or whine and did what they were told.

Perhaps that's the bigger dream, actually.

The point of this post is the realization that I put a little too much effort in people that didn't deserve it. How my perception of them became so distorted that I dreamed up some sort of view of them, rather than seeing the reality of who and what they actually were and are is beyond me. But since I've seemed to have woken up from the dream state of how I viewed these people, I suppose it is now time to face reality and move on. Still, the dream was nice while it lasted...


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Welcome Isabella and Eisen

Well, we're back from our visit to Milwaukee to pick out our newest family member. All that fuss about selecting a name and the kids did the most wonderful thing... they found a dog they liked right away, and knew her name almost as instantly. They settled on a female, which I am totally ok with, and they named her Isabella, or "Izzy" for short. Izzy is smaller than her brother, but her colors are beautiful and her fur is far softer than his. She likes to hop about, she mistakes Lillie for a sibling puppy, and she likes to snuggle up and be held. She's my kind of dog for sure. Bonus... Garen seemed to really like her as well.

Eisen is Bill's pup. Larger than Izzy, Eisen has a very square head. His fur is kinda course but his colors are even darker and prettier than Izzy's. His paws are huge! He'll be a big dog for sure. Eisen seems to be a bit afraid of heights so he doesn't like to be picked up as much as his sister, but he does snuggle up to people's feet like Izzy does. Both pups are doing great on the housebreaking... and they are rather playful. They pick on each other quite a bit, but all in all they're really good dogs.

Taking the kids to pick the dogs out turned out to be a wonderful idea. Lillie ran right into the litter of 7 puppies, even with mom and daddy dog barking madly from their kennels. That day was the pups first day outside, and they got ran around like crazy thanks to Hayden and Lillie. Hayden was a bit more timid about simply diving into a pack of puppies, but he eventually came around, too.

Sadly, we had to leave Izzy with Bill and Eisen until after our planned trip to Disney World this summer. I didn't have it in me to ask someone to watch such a young pup, and Bill's brother Len was more than willing to take in both pups for that week. So until June we'll have to settle for seeing her on the webcam... but at least she gets to spend a bit more time with her brother.

Here is a video of the kids meeting the dogs for the first time and some pics of selecting and then playing with our new family members... enjoy!

Hayden and Lillie playing with pups at the breeder's

Lillie holding Izzy at the breeders

Izzy in the foreground and Eisen in the background at the breeder's

Me and Izzy

Bill and Eisen

Izzy and Eisen (She's got pink, he's got blue)

Izzy chillin' in the back yard

Eisen who'd recently finished chewing on my shoe.


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A Rose By Any Other Name...

Would that apply to a dog, too? Does a dog still smell like a dog regardless of what you name it? Of course it does, but that doesn't mean I want to be heard shouting "Sir Snuffles McBeth Von Schnauzer Fluffypants the Third" every time I call the dog. I recently posted on Facebook for suggestions on what to name our soon to be addition to our family, but instead got a lot of reasons that I shouldn't own a new puppy right now. Granted, there were a couple names suggested among my friends and family, but thus far, the names my family likes I've found myself. Here's a list of what we've got so far.

There are other names we liked but those are the top ones thus far. Garen has a few other choices in mind like Thor and Odin... but I'm really not digging on those. We'll have to meet our new pup first, and then decide upon a name suiting of his/her personality, and of course of his/her being a German Shepherd. So it's not too late to throw out your .02 cents on this issue, if you've got an opinion on naming it, that is. On owning it, well that's a mute point now, it's already paid for.


Monday, April 18, 2011

The One With The Introduction

Ok, so maybe you get it, with the titles and such? Or maybe you don't. Just in case you don't (don't feel badly, Garen apparently missed the reference as well) the title of the blog and the title of this post are in relation to the TV show Friends, which used the "The One With..." format for every episode. I don't actually intend to label all my posts this way, but I liked the idea for the title of the blog... and hey, it's always a nice fall back when I can't come up with a clever title on my own for future posts.

So yup, a blog... on blogger... which is different than my previous wordpress attempts... and there have been many. This time around there's no just WoW, no just poems, no just "the kids drove me nuts today". I plan to simply post whatever crops up to my mind. Somedays it might be mindless complaining, other days, I might have an actual well formed opinion on something to share. Or maybe my kids were doing that cute thing again. Who knows? We'll see what I come up with. Otherwise, welcome. Make yourself at home. My life is pretty crazy so I hope you'll stay open minded with me here.