Friday, September 28, 2012

Texting Update

Back in December of last year, I wrote about how I was pretty resistant to texting.  Well, I'm here to say that my resistance has been replaced by some amount of confidence in my texting abilities.  What I've definitely come to realize is that texting knows no age limit.  My teenage daughter is ecstatic that she can text me now and I text her back.  Last weekend, two of my friends and I were at a sporting event and we all had our cell phones out and we were comparing them to each other.  I use a TracFone which is a pretty basic phone, but it works for me.  On my birthday last year, I tried to upgrade my TracFone and after several frustrating hours trying to get my number switched to the new phone, I couldn't figure it out.  I ended up sending the phone back :(  I'm still learning cell phone "etiquette."  One of my friends was wondering if I was upset or mad at her because a lot of my texts to her end up in capital letters (like the text below):


I had to explain to her I was still kind of figuring out what I was doing and didn't quite have the hang of putting my texts in lower case letters :)  It's kind of interesting in our house with our cell phone plans.  Lauren, the hubby and I all have different phones and different cell phone plans. I have to buy minutes as I need them with my phone, Lauren has a monthly plan with unlimited texting and my husband has a plan that doesn't have many minutes during the week, but extra minutes on the weekends.  I NEVER thought I would say this, but I actually kind of like texting.  The hubby is still resistant to texting and once in a while someone will text him, but he doesn't know how to text them back.  Maybe I should give him some "lessons!!"

Monday, September 24, 2012

That "Go-To" Dress

It's been awhile since I've been to a wedding.  In October, we are going to two weddings within a week of each other!!  Both are relatively formal, so my usual mom "uniform" of shorts/capris/jeans and t-shirts/sweatshirts with tennis shoes probably won't cut it :)  About a week or so ago, I went looking for a dress. After trying a bunch of dresses on, I came home kind of bummed and deflated.  I was beginning to think I might have to wear my shorts!!  After a quick look in my closet, it hit me that I already had a dress that would be suitable for both weddings.  I have had this particular dress since before Lauren was born.

I guess you can say I have definitely gotten my money's worth out of this dress. I'm pretty sure I paid less than $100.00 for it originally. This dress must have some magical powers, because I have worn it when I was thinner than I am now and when I was heavier than I am now.  I think I even wore it when I was pregnant with one or both of my kids. I was pointing the dress out to the hubby a few days ago and telling him it was my "go-to" dress.  He was like, "what does that mean??"  I had to explain it to him that it's a dress that never goes out of style, it ALWAYS fits and I can wear it for just about any formal event. Men have it easier I think than women. My husband has a job where he has to wear a suit or tie at least a few times a week.  The other days of the week he has to wear a button down shirt and slacks. His hardest decision with what to wear to the weddings will be which tie should he wear :)  With women, you have to worry about the pantyhose, shoes, purse, etc.  Now that I have the dress figured out, I need to go dig around under my bed, find my high heeled shoes and brush the inch of dust off of them!

Friday, September 21, 2012

TV Dinners

After doing a quick look on the internet, I found that TV dinners have been on the food scene for over 50 years.  My mom cooked probably 95% of the time when I was growing up.  The only time I remember eating a TV dinner was when my dad was out of town for business. It was considered to be really special and something we didn't eat often.  The dinners at that time came in an aluminum tray with a piece of foil over it.  There were no microwaves in the early 1960's through the 1970's when I was little, so an oven was required.  Wow, have frozen meals come a long way since that time!  I do my big grocery shopping once a week and I don't know how it works out this way, but I always seem to be checking out around lunchtime :) By the time I unload the groceries, I'm usually pretty hungry for lunch!  I love to cook, but lately I've been buying a frozen meal while I'm at the grocery store and while I'm unloading all the groceries I toss it into the microwave.  By the time I'm done unloading the groceries, my lunch is usually done.  The price of one frozen meal even without a coupon is usually still cheaper than going through the drive through somewhere. I caught a sale last week and had a coupon, so I bought a few stuffed pepper frozen meals. Nobody in this house would eat that but me.  This week at the store, I bought sweet and sour chicken.  What is your favorite TV dinner??  How many of you out there remember the TV dinners with the aluminum trays??

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

I Don't Have Time to be "Sick!"

After feeling not quite 100% for the past two or three weeks, I decided I better pay a little visit to my doctor.  The diagnosis - shingles!!! Excuse me, really? I almost told the doctor, "I don't have time to be sick!"  Luckily, there is a medication that will get it cleared up in about a week or two.  As parents, do we have the "time" in our schedules to not feel well?? There is still laundry to wash, meals to make, kids to get to activities, etc.  Having shingles is kind of like having a continual sunburn on your skin. The doctor wanted to prescribe a very strong painkiller in addition to the other medication. She said, "you probably won't take it anyways!"  She was right.  After having a major operation back when Lauren was a toddler, a few hours afterwards, I was already picking her up. Two weeks after my operation, I was matron of honor in my sister's wedding.  After having my left knee operated on in 2006, I was driving the car a day later. Two years ago after my latest operation, I couldn't drive for two weeks - those were the longest two weeks I've ever experienced!!!  I had to depend on others and I couldn't barely stand it!!!  I guess I need to work on my "control" issues still :) My hubby has told me before, "when you go down, the whole house goes down!"  It's kind of true.  In my household, I'm the "master" organizer of all of our appointments, activities, meals, and everything else our family does.  They are pretty good about taking care of themselves, but I think they like when I'm running at full "capacity." After the medication starts kicking in and I head on the road to recovery, I'm hoping the next time I have to deal with shingles again, it will be when we need a new roof!!!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Feeling Like Part of a "Team"

Sports have always been a part of my life.  I tried karate, softball, basketball and soccer when I was younger.  My dad is a huge Washington Redskins fan and I grew up watching professional football on television.  I married someone who loves watching just about any kind of sports.  For about seven years, from the time I was about 10 or 11 until I was 17, I played soccer.  My nickname (which I actually had embroidered on my sports jacket) was "Tuffy."  The hubby gets quite a chuckle out of that one :) I loved being part of a team.  I have very fond memories of playing soccer with my "peeps."  One thing I always hoped was that my kids would want to play.  Lauren tried it and decided that she would go the route of competitive gymnastics which she did for a handful of years.  She now does cheer and loves it. A few months ago on our local news, I heard about a special needs soccer group in the area.  I have been looking for something like that for Dominic since he was about four.  He has done a few sporting events at school through the Special Olympics, but I was searching for a group where he could play soccer.  The group met for the first time this past Saturday.  There are kids from the age of four up to the age of 10.  All of them have special needs.  Dominic was more interested in hanging out behind the net on Saturday, but that was fine.  It was a little overwhelming for him.  He had another practice last night and this time he participated better in the "drills" that Coach M. had him doing.  Dominic called him "Coachman."  A bonus of participating in this group is that you get your own soccer ball.

When we were driving back home after practice, Dominic held the ball in his lap the entire ride :)  I love that there are organizations around like the Special Olympics and the group Dominic is participating in.  It gives those kids with special needs a place where they can feel part of a team. I'm loving being a "soccer mom!"

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Getting Back into the Routine

This past week was Lauren's third week of school and Dominic's first week of school.  One or both of the "kids" were around the entire summer.  I have to admit, the house has been pretty quiet with the both of them gone during the day.  Dominic was in school half-days most of the summer (we feel very fortunate) and he had to catch his bus early, so he was "kind of" in the routine of getting up, getting ready and going to school.  Lauren enjoyed sleeping in and staying up late during the summer.  She was busy with sports practices and seeing her friends, but she and I did get to spend a lot of one-on-one time with each other :)   I'm happy she still likes to hang out with me once in a while! Since I'm used to being by myself during the school year, it usually takes a little time to get into a different routine for the summer.  It seems like as soon as I get used to having both of the "kids" around more, then they start school again!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

"Loose" Change

If you saw a coin lying on the sidewalk or street, would you take a moment to pick it up? or would you keep walking? Doesn't it seem that coins seem to collect in the bottom of your purse, in your pockets, in the car or under the cushions of your couch?  Even though I check the pockets of the pants when I do laundry, some change inevitably seems to end up clanging around in the dryer. Towards the end of the past school year, I mentioned to Dominic's teacher about having a penny drive to raise money for charity.  I have heard of schools doing it, but I had never tried to organize one.  The school administration was on board about doing it, so after a little planning on my part, the drive began! I went to my local bank and told them my idea and they gave me penny, nickel, dime and quarter wrappers for free :)  I pulled a number out of my head of $100.00, thinking okay, maybe we would get $25.00 (if we were lucky).  The penny drive total actually went 50 cents over the goal for a grand total of $100.50!!  Some of the kids in the school (including Dominic) helped count the coins. To make it easier to count, I sent in sandwich sized bags and had the kids put 50 pennies in each bag. In  pennies alone, there were 4,750!! Some bigger bills were donated also, which really touched my heart.  At the beginning of August, the money collected was donated to a charity Dominic's teacher had selected :)  I was so impressed by the administration, teachers, students, parents and everyone else who donated or helped in some way.  I'm hoping the school makes this an annual event and that they pick a different charity to donate to each year.  What will you do with all of your "loose" change?

My New "Relationship" with the Sun

Long gone are the days that I would sit on the beaches of the Atlantic Ocean for HOURS at a time with just baby oil on my skin for prote...