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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy Anniversary, Sniper Babe-

Yesterday marked 17 years of wedded bliss for me and my sweetheart. This day is always overshadowed by web-slinging, nerf gun fights and light saber duels since it also happens to be our son's birthday. And that's okay! Our children were part of the package...right? Right!

So, last night Doug asked me if I was upset that he didn't get me a gift. For one thing, I was way too tired to even consider the question. And another, I was little perturbed that he'd think I was that bitchy. We spent ten days in Florida this year. We just got back from a quick and frightfully expensive trip to Minneapolis. Last weekend we traipsed to the Flat Iron restaurant in Omaha where we feasted on lobster, ribeye  AND ordered TWO appetizers simply because we didn't understand how the menu worked. (Please let's put the credit card away for awhile.) But the climax? The climax occurred this Friday when we got to see Cowboys and Aliens. It doesn't get much better than that....except for perhaps a Nerf gun battle. (I hear artillery fire at this very moment.)

You see, we have the perfect marriage. Because when it comes down to it, we laugh a heckuva lot. It's the secret of our success. And the fact that I'm such a great cook. I'm sure my hubby would agree.

Mr and Mrs Doug Kramer
Mr and Mrs. Mark Kramer
As I finish this blog, I came across a photo of Doug's parents on their wedding day. Mark (rest in peace) and Mary Ann didn't need to shower each other with material gifts and a lot of hoopla. But they knew how to be happy with each other's company. That's all that really matters. That's all I need. My spouse, my kids, my dog, and a few smiles.

PS For you faithful followers, you might have noticed the absence of me stating "my cat." Skye has been missing for one week now. My optimism is beginning to wane...But I'm still holding out hope for the little beggar to show up at the back door. He's been as good as any cat could be.

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Color of Summer

While my husband boldly marches into autumn (championing our children off to school and eager to race his combine through the fields), it seems I'm desperately clutching to summer as its last days slip away too quickly. My coping strategy? Yellow. And orange. I've had this incredible yearning to paint like a …painting guy.

Alex’s bathroom now has yellow and orange shapes in her room of reflection (aka, her bathroom). And those terrifying roosters that I fell in love with merely six years ago? The ones that covered the soffit in the kitchen? GONE! Now the cocks have been steadfastly covered by the color known as “stained glass sun.” It's yellow. Sure, it’s a bit monotonous now, but wait til I get the courage to crack a nail in the wall and add some art. Or something that looks like art for the low, low price of $5 or less. Just don't let me buy anything with a rooster.
Alex's Powder Room

 Now, I’m not terribly superstitious, (Wait! Yes I am! ), guess what came popping out of one of my seemingly barren flower pots this past week? Orange and yellow flowers. Sorry, can't tell you the genus or species. But they were real pretty.

And speaking of yellow and orange...Look at my kids' hair! No wonder I love those colors...(You have to look for the strip of orange in Alex's hair.)

 Blogging has been a bit on hiatus. Been watching old 30 Rock episodes with the hopes of enhancing my writing skills. I hope to come back strong in a few weeks…I've actually been writing episodes in my mind. When I was young, I wrote to the Love Boat with hopes of getting on the show. I didn't make it, but received an awfully nice response.  So now I've been considering sending an episode idea to Tina Fey at 30 Rock. Wonder where that will get me.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

School Pics

Second school day of the year, and guess what I forgot to do, again. Yep. Take a pic of my darlings before they're off to class. And my eldest even started high school this year. Pathetic. (I forgot last year too.) The matronly pride burns when I see all those Mom postings on Facebook with their smiling young-uns with backpacks. I truly want to slap myself because Alex and Cole have new shirts from Old Navy too. Well, you good mothers can bask all you want with your adorable photos. Because take a look at this! Now who's jealous...

Alex and Cole with a celebrity-BLUE! See how happy he makes Al?

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Demise of a Shopper

Apparently, sometime in the past ten years I lost my passion for shopping.  I know, devastating. But I realized something today, at the biggest mall in America, standing in the middle of Forever 21 while some band sung  oh-so-profound-yet-undecipherable lyrics. Shopping's not my thing anymore. And I imagine the  words that must come to my hubby's mind when he's forced to delight his senses at Bath and Body are,"This really sucks." (Insert F word if you're a realist.)

 I long for those Gymboree days with Raffi singing in the backround his while my mom and I oohed and ahhed over the daisy-print dress for Alex or a lime green sweater vest for Cole. Now we go into shops dripping with sex, and between the daisy duke shorts, disco shirts and stripper-studded ankle boots, I just can't get excited anymore. Once in awhile I'll point out a floral dress I don't completely oppose. That usually gets me a barf signal from my teenage rebel.

What about my stores you ask? The "mom" stores. Sigh. You can only package a banker in so many ways after 14 years.  I walk into some of my favorite stores-who I can only hope haven't sold their souls to sweatshops in China or India,btw... But I eye the racks.  "have this." "have that" "oh! My button-down shirt comes in purple (eggplant) this season? Fabulous! I only have light purple (violet), red (crimson), white(white), off white (butter), orange (melon),etc. I really do get the feeling that designers say, "It's for the working mom! She won't care...just add some cheap looking bling or a tacky print. It will make her think of her youth!" Really? Oh sure. Like watching Mrs. Roper on Three's Company.

Now, these are obviously the ramblings of a terribly ungrateful wench who has more than enough to wear. So let me end with something a bit more positive. There was one particular purchase that made me feel abundantly good. Have you ever heard of TOMS?

 I read about the company and the shoes in Oprah, of course. For every pair of shoes purchased, they make a pair for a kid in need. Yes, some kids in the world don't have shoes to wear. Can you even fathom?

Anyway, the marketing for toms is mainly word of mouth (Oprah probably tipped the scale a bit), but here is my small contribution as well: TOMS. So maybe shopping isn't all bad. I just needed a cause.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Kids of Summer!

You know your kids are awesome when he or she:

-still wants to do makeovers, at the age of 14...even though she will make you look like a scary wicked witch.
-calls you with tears in his voice, because you're not home yet and it's thundering, while his Dad is in the shower so as not to appear...less than a man.
-negotiates higher fees for a lost tooth with a gold filling.
-needs Transformer folders for school, and she's not a little boy. And is entering high school.
-makes a fort half the size of the basement, using every available blanket, and insists we keep it up until his birthday. He has a plan. And an imagination bigger than this universe.
-has more faith in everyone than anyone I've ever seen. Just when you think YOU are supposed to be the teacher, she does something or says something that makes you realize what a remarkable child lady she is becoming.

Gotta go. It's time to grab these awesome kids and enjoy the day outside. They love it when I pull them outside. I think they love it anyway. They don't actually say they love it. They actually groan a bit. But within minutes, they are laughing. Mark my words. They will be laughing.

Goodness, they are cute!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


So it's been hot right? Too hot to pull weeds...And perhaps I've been reading so much CS Lewis that I'm seeing my life in metaphors. So I came up with these maxims:

My pretty Phlox
My damn tomato plant

#1:"If you look past the weeds, you can find much beauty by just noticing the flowers." I know. Profound. Anyway - see my phlox? There is actually quite a mess of weeds underneath. Can't see it, can you?

#2: "If you plant a cherry tomato plant for the pure joy of it, there's nothing clever about controlling a mutant vegetable." Feed him Seymour. Okay, there's no metaphor in that, but seriously! I have a crazy, ugly vine going wild in a flower bed. And I'm the only person who will eat a tomato in the family. What was I thinking? Who knows.

Ah - but it's all in good fun. In six months these beds will be covered with the white, cold and fluffy stuff. Bet I won't be cursing the tomato plant then.