Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Knock, Knock. Who's there?

Unfortunately, this isn't a joke. Christmas is just a little over a week away. Yikes. I have never in my life been this far behind this close to Christmas. The Christmas cards aren't mailed. Heck I don't even have a picture I want to use yet. The presents aren't wrapped. Well, that could be because I haven't bought them yet. I haven't been to the grocery store to purchase what I need for the Christmas meal. I am so going to love those long lines at the grocery store. John's birthday is Friday, the big 4-0! Am I prepared? Nooooooo.

I was getting ready for bed last night and slowly working myself into a tizzy. I stopped to read Lindsey her books. We are reading a Christmas collection and as I turned to the story of Little Robin Redbreast, The Little Donkey and the story of the birth of Christ, I slowly began to calm down. Jesus was born for me! Talk about the ultimate gift. How lucky am I? The presents and Christmas cards are nice, but they really don't matter. I am so fortunate to be alive, to have a wonderful family and friends, to have a roof over my head and food on my table and to have Jesus in my life.

So as I wrap up and get ready to jump back into the hustle and bustle of the season, I am going to try harder to keep this in mind. To really remember what is important and try not to get upset if something doesn't go as I planned. Wish me luck!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Letter to Lift Me Up

My mother gave me many gifts, not just the material kind. She gave me faith, hope, eternal optimism and most of all love. I found this letter this morning. It made me smile and cry at the same this. This is why I am who I am. I don't remember what this letter specifically addressed, but I know I was preparing to graduate and head to A&M in the fall. I was very worried about my Mom, she would be all alone. She wrote this to me, probably as scared as I was at the upcoming change, but you would never know it from her words. Thanks Mom and dear Lord, please give me these kinds of gifts to give to my daughter.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Princess Butterfly

Halloween turned out the be a blast this year. The week of Halloween Lindsey told me she wanted to be a butterfly. I was so excited! She wants to dress up. So I quickly start making plans for her costume. Buy the cardboard to make wings, and whala, we have a butterfly. Thankfully I found cute hot pink wings at Wal-Mart for $5 so I didn't have to make wings.

Thursday, Lindsey says she wants to be a princess. She said please. Well of course you can. However, Mommy is on a budget so I can't bring myself to spend $30 on an outfit we will wear once or twice. I Google how to make a tutu and we are off to Wal-Mart again to find netting and supplies for me to make a tutu. I found some hot pink netting and ribbon and off we go. Making tutu's is actually pretty easy. Having a two and a half year old helping has its challenges, but it turned out okay. Since we had the wings, we put them on together with a black turtleneck and black tights and the tutu. Roll the music...we have Princess Butterfly!

Lindsey wore the outfit to the George Bush Presidential Library for trick or treating through the library on Friday. (What a neat event) She did well, even saying trick or treat and thank you. She was actually excited to put it back on again and go trick or treating down our street. She even added "Have fun" for all the people handing out candy.

Now it is done. Another Halloween under our belt. I am thankful she had fun. Thankful she didn't try to eat all of her candy that night. Thankful she is willing to share her candy with her family ;) Thankful she will let her Mommy throw a wild costume together. Thankful I have the sweetest little girl in the world!
PS - The plan to have the manager at Wal-Mart (see previous post) take the heat for the lobsters really didn't do much. It is slowing down, but anytime we are in or driving by Wal-Mart a lobster discussion is a given!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Can I Get a Manager, Please?

I like routine. It is a good thing. When something happens to change our routine, it takes a while to adjust.

Super Wal-Mart is a normal spot for Lindsey and I to visit. Unlike most, I have no problems with the place. In fact, it seems as if I spend more time in line at Kroger than I do at Wal-Mart. Anywhooo. Our Wal-Mart routine consists of a slight struggle to get Lindsey into the basket, we visit the lobster tank, proceed on to the moo-moo cow pictures in the dairy department where we usually enjoy a string cheese, check out the kid's clothes for clearance and then head to check-out. Simple and easy...until a couple of weeks ago when we turned the corner in produce and saw an empty space. "Mommy, where are the lobsters. I need to see the lobsters. Please Mommy, get the lobsters." Oh gosh, you can't be serious, you have taken the lobsters away? I ask the seafood man about them and he tells us the dreaded news, the tank broke and since the store is slated for a complete remodel they have decided the lobsters would not go with the new design. Wait, no one asked me, dont' I get a vote, I don't need a new and improved Wal-Mart, I need lobsters for my little girl!

Every trip since then results in the same questions about the lobsters. Well, last night she asked about the lobsters as she was going to sleep. We are in the stage of asking "Why" right now. I could not get her to stop so I told her that we would ask the manager why they took them away next time we went. I thought she would forget overnight, but no such luck. First thing this morning, "Mommy, let's go get the manager and talk." Oh goodness, what have I done? All day I heard about the manager. So, since I needed milk anyway we headed to Wal-Mart. I was thinking of just telling her the checker was the manager, but lo and behold guess who was out roaming the store, the store manager, the big kahuna, the man with the power, the man with is picture on the wall. I explain our situation and he expresses heartfelt sympathy to Lindsey and explains the lobsters weren't safe because their tank was broken. (Must have kids of his own) He tells us that other children have been upset since the lobsters departed and if there is anyway he can get them back safely he will. She said okay and it is the last I have heard of the manager and the lobsters! Hope this is a long term solution! :)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Random Things to Remember

One day when I am old, hopefully I will look back at this blog and things that I have written will make me smile. I had been writing in my journal faithfully for almost three years, but recently I have lost steam. The little things I had been capturing on a daily basis seem to slip by and I don't like it. My goal is to get motivated again so I don't lose these precious memories. So in no particular order, here are this week's highlights.

1.) We are still trying to potty train. We were at work and did not have our potty seat with us. Needless to say, it was our first and hopefully last trip into the toilet. Not fun, but I guess I should be grateful it wasn't at the mall or a gas station, uggg.
2.) Lindsey seems to be developing a stronger bond with Maxwell. Maxwell is her stuffed dog. She called him puppy forever and then one day I heard her talking to him. I asked what his name was and she said Maxwell. We have no idea where it came from, but there is always a chair for him at our table.
3.) Lindsey saw a grasshopper for the first time this week. He was on the glass door at work. She studied him for a long time. I am imagining all of the things that could be going through her mind. She turns to me and asks, "Mommy, do gasshoppers eat mac and cheese?"
4.) Lindsey was busy coloring while I was working on the computer. She stood up to show me her art. The look on her face was full of fear. She started to limp and hang her foot. She froze, unsure of what was happening to her. My best guess is her foot fell asleep. How do you explain this to her? It's okay, it will go away, just hang on. Of course, it passed quickly, but it is so hard when things we as adults totally understand happen to them for the first time.

Ohhhh, the stories are endless, but I smell dinner so I better get back to it and make it look like I have been busy! ;)

Friday, October 2, 2009

Delicious Autumn!

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a
bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.
~George Eliot

What a great quote! I love autumn. Our leaves really don't turn like they do in the East, but the cooler temperatures are certainly welcome. I was able to work in yard today in a t-shirt and jeans and I didn't die of heatstroke and soon the mosquitoes won't carry me away!

We pulled all of the fall decorations out last night. Lighted pumpkins, plastic pumpkins, painted pumpkins and of course pumpkin candles. Yummm! I even made a pumpkin roll for MOPS yesterday. That is another thing about fall, MOPS starts back up and I am able to share time with other moms. What a great program!

Halloween is fast approaching. I wonder if Lindsey will wear a "real" costume this year? Then it is time for Thanksgiving. Yummy food and the perfect time to be thankful for all of our many blessings. Then, yes, it will be here, Christmas. I almost fell over in Target the other day when I saw Christmas decorations out. It was like September 25. Come on, put the brakes on, enjoy this season, it has so much to offer!

Anyway, this is a totally random post. Mimi will understand because I think she loves autumn as much, if not more than I do! Hope you all have a terrific autumn!

Monday, September 21, 2009

I'm Leaving on a Jet Plane

The good news is, I do know when I will be back again. My much awaited trip to Atlanta (yes, the land of overflowing rivers and torrential thunderstorms) is here. I depart tomorrow morning. Today has been a whirlwind of preparations and a whirlwind of emotions. Printing brochures, packing, making sure my instructions for Lindsey are as complete as possible, being excited, being nervous, just plain being tired.

So much races through my head right now. I am so sad that I won't see Lindsey until Friday. It feels so odd, so wrong honestly. I know she is in good hands, John and MiMi Betty will be fine with her. I just keep thinking what will I miss, will she forget me, will she be sad? Crazy thoughts as John puts it, but I just can't help it.

This trip does make me put things in some perspective though. I am thankful that I don't have to do this on a regular basis. At one time, my old job had me on the road quite a bit. I can't imagine leaving my baby girl on a regular basis. I am also grateful that I am on the exhibiting side of the meeting. Having been on both the hosting/planning and attending side of a trade show, I can say it's much easier being the exhibitor! This trip also made me think, this is what John does go through on a weekly basis. Every Monday through Thursday we are in Rosenberg working. I wonder if his heart aches a little bit when we are gone?

So, I guess I just need to try my best to focus on dazzling potential clients and signing them up for business. :) Just remember honey, Lindsey likes the yogurts pops in the freezer and there is such thing as too many mandarin oranges.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Waiting For the Leaves to Change

It is September. Wow! Part of me is thankful because it means cooler temperatures are getting closer. Part of me misses summer, because although I love Aggies, (afterall, I am one of them) I hate the traffic that the students bring back to town. The town does seem to have more pep with everyone back though, especially now that football season is starting.

I seem to find myself in this position alot these days, trying to catch up in one big blog what has been happening. I keep telling myself I am going to be better, but alas something else seems to come up.

1.) Preschool was a blast! Lindsey loved it and continues to talk about going to school. She made some terrific crafts and enjoyed her monkey lunch kit. I also loved my "time off." It really is amazing how many things you can get done all by yourself.
2.) We have been without our shaw for more than two months now. I am thankful that it went smoothly.
3.) Lindsey continues to obsess over Speed Racer. She constantly wants to watch John's DVD's. Her speed racer coloring book must go with us everywhere. He also must lay under her head when she falls asleep. Together we can pull off most of the theme song. I must admit, I did not like Speed Racer when my brother forced me to watch it 30 years ago, but I am trying to me more understanding since John and Lindsey both seem to love it so much! ;)
4.) Lindsey's vocabulary is amazing. I am so proud of her. It is a constant battle as a parent though to not let things slip. Not even really bad things, just little things I sometimes don't even realize I am saying. One of her favorite things is, "Are your surris?" and "Surrsly" (seriously) When I get annoyed at something I tend to say these, obviously more than I thought. She also likes to say, "Who is that guy/girl" whenever we meet someone new. She pats my back when I hug her and says, "I love you so much." Melt, melt melt. I don't want to forget these things. I want my video camera on all the time.
5.) Sissy has been having more health issues. We have had to up her medication again, but for the time being it is working. Maybe I need to ask Obama to offer a pet option in the new health plan.
6.) Work has been incredibly busy. We are putting several stores in this fall in addition to moving our headquarters. I can't wait for this. Due to so much happening, I have been spending three to four days a week in Rosenberg working. It is getting hard. I am ready for the move so I can spend more time at home with John and stop living out of a suitcase. I am excited about an upcoming trip to Atlanta where will be exhibiting. I am excited because I feel like I might finally be able to contribute something. I mean, I know what I do matters, but this is more like what I did in my previous life. Only drawback...four days away from Lindsey. Must admit I am a little nervous about that.

I am sure there is more, but John will be home soon. Off to have some family time! :)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Preschool Fun Days

Earlier this year I signed Lindsey up for her first preschool adventure. For each Thursday in July from 9 am - 12:30 pm, Lindsey would be playing with friends and Mommy would be out of the town. I have been dreaming about this for months. Three and a half hours of doing whatever I want!

After a rough night (we haven't had our "shaw" in almost a week, but last night she really, really wanted it) I had to wake Lindsey up to get ready. I asked if she wanted to go to school and she literally sat straight up and said "Yes!" We got ready and headed out the door. As we were getting out of the car and I put her backpack on and put her lunchkit in her tiny hands, it hit me. My baby is going to preschool. School will be next and oh my gosh, one day I will have to send her to college! I signed her in and took her to her class, she hands everything to her teacher, says bye bye and is off to play. I turn to leave and it starts. I quickly lower the sunglasses to hide the tears. So I sat in the parking lot, cried and called Marti to discuss these Mommy feelings. I knew John would just think I was crazy as all I could talk about was my three and a half hours of whatever.

After reassuring words from my veteran Mommy resource I was off for my whatever. Today's whatever included a pedicure and trips to the bank, optical shop, Office Depot and James Avery. I picked Lindsey up and was thrilled with a huge hug and a Mommy squeal. She was asleep before we made it to the house and I am now waiting for her to wake up so we can play.

For some it may sound silly, tears over preschool and one day a week for one month at that. This is a good thing, for both of us. However, it is yet another sign that my little baby is growing up. How time is flying.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Gone But Not Forgotten

I didn't want to let the day go by without remembering two important people. My Dad, Sigmund Lipinsky and John's Dad, Lonnie Williams.

So much of what I know of Lonnie is from stories from friends and family, as Alzheimer's had already taken his spark when I met John. He was a remarkable man. The stories always mention Lonnie's love for life, his giving heart and a joyful attitude. I know they are true because I see these very same qualities in John. A note about the picture of Lonnie and me at my wedding. As I planned our wedding, I realized April 24 was going to be a Saturday that year. This was my parents and my grandparents anniversary and I was thrilled that I would be able to share the same day. As it turned out, our church was booked all day and I had to select another day, March 20. How thankful I am it turned out this way as Lonnie's illness took a turn for the worse very shortly after our wedding. Had we married on the 24th Lonnie would have missed a day that he truly enjoyed. He was dancing and laughing and dancing and dancing. The man loved to dance! You could see the joy in his eyes.

The stories of my Dad come from family and friends as well. My Dad was quiet and reserved, dedicated to his family and his church and one of the hardest working people around. Since he passed when I was so young, I don't remember many specific stories of my own. I do remember him having surprises tucked in his nail pouch when he would come home, learning to polka while standing on his feet in the middle of our living room, him playing the accordion, snuggling next to him at church on Saturday night and us all going home and eating popcorn while watching Emergency on TV. (This was the real popcorn too, he made it in a pan with oil and everything!)

We love you and miss you both very much!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Our First Weekend Getaway

Here I go again, trying to catch up on all the craziness that is happening with the Williams family!
John and I had a fantastic time on our first parents only weekend getaway to San Antonio to celebrate out 10th anniversary. I admit, I cried when we dropped Lindsey off. At least I didn't let her see my cry. She was happy as a lark, playing with cousin Robin and Aunt Ro-Ro. The first few miles of the quiet were very weird, we just sat there, looked at each other and sighed. A few more miles into it we decided, hey we can listen to loud music, roll the windows down without fear of getting too much wind or just have conversation without spelling out words.

The Marriott was fantastic, right on the Riverwalk. We looked out onto the river from the 28th floor, what a view! That night we had dinner at The Chart House on top of the Tower of the Americas. If you are in San Antonio, eat here! The food, service and view from the top of the second tallest freestanding tower in America are amazing. We bought Lindsey a cute stuffed tower.

We woke up early to maximize the day. Had a delicious breakfast at the hotel (part of our amazing package), visited the Buckhorn Museum, ate lunch at Taco Haven, visited the Alamo, the Marketplace, cathedrals, hat shops, the mall and toured the Riverwalk by boat. Needless to say we were pooped! We walked over six miles, not including what we did at the actual attractions, so we simply relaxed on our balcony with an adult beverage and enjoyed a beautiful evening.

Sunday, we were up early again, ate breakfast and took the boat ride during the daytime for a different view (again, part of our package). We actually headed out pretty early to pick up Lindsey. It is so weird being without your little one. We would see something and both say "Oh, Lindsey would love that," What do you think she is doing now?" or simply stare at another child about the same age. It was odd not hearing the quiet sssshhhhh of the monitor, not hearing "Mama" first thing in the morning. Although it was difficult and there was part of me that didn't want to go, if you are a parent and you haven't had some alone time with your spouse, GO! It is amazing what a few days alone can do for your relationship with your spouse and with your child, I think it makes you appreciate them both a little bit more.

Lastly, a big Thank You to Rosemary, Robert Sr., Robert Jr., Richard and Robin. This would not have been possible without them. Not only did they surprise us with this fantastic weekend getaway, they took care of Lindsey. There is nowhere that Lindsey would have been more well cared for or would have had as much fun! So thanks for everything guys, we love you and appreciate what you did! :)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Teaching Conservation

It is true that with motherhood all hopes of privacy seem to fly out the window. We have begun to potty train in the Williams' house. Not hardcore training, but let's just say I don't spend much time in the bathroom alone. With that being said, I will go ahead with my story.

Although Lindsey is young, we are trying to teach her simple things like turning off the water when brushing her teeth, putting recyclables in the blue bin and to take only the amount of paper she needs when going to the bathroom or drying her hands. Since she really doesn't potty in the big potty yet, I only give her one square of paper for her to "wipe with." I am happy to report that she has she paper thing down. I just wish she hadn't figured it out after she managed to pull the toilet paper dispenser off the wall and was holding the paper hostage. After I pleaded for some paper, she conceded...and handed me one square of paper. "Here go Mommy!" Thanks!!!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Best Mom Ever

Tomorrow will be the fourth anniversary of my Mom's passing, although it feels as if its been a million years since I heard her reassuring voice and felt her sweet hug. Those who really know me, know that my mom was my best friend. She is the woman that I admire most in this world. She practically raised me alone since we lost my Dad so young and I can only strive to be half of the terrific Mom that she was.

I always feel a little blue as we approach tomorrow (happy and sad as it is my wedding anniversary too). I got a little pick me up when I got home today though. My mom had beautiful amaryllis plants in her front yard. She transplanted them when she moved from Houston to Rosenberg. These spectacular plants always bloomed for Easter. It didn't matter when Easter was, they just always bloomed. My mom passed away on Palm Sunday that year and it was the first year that I can remember the amaryllis plants didn't bloom. After she passed we dug them up in hopes of replanting them again. These poor little bulbs have been shifted from pot to pot, moved from city to city. A few weeks ago they finally arrived here to our home. I put them out on the back patio. The glorious rain last week really helped these little guys and to my surprise today I saw two of the plants getting ready to bloom! Now I imagine they will bloom before Easter, but I am so happy that it looks like they will bloom. The first time in over four years! John said they knew they were home now and that all was well. I like that idea. I kind of like to think that it is my Mom looking down on me and smiling.

Anyway, I just wanted to pay a little tribute to her today... the best Mom in the world!

PS - The two photos were favorites on my Mom's. Otherwise, the giganto hair of the 80's picture would not be posted. Check out the height of the hair.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Daddy Daughter Dance 2009

What is sweeter than seeing the man you love and the daughter you are head over heals for all dressed up and ready to dance the night away? Not much!

On Friday, John and Lindsey attended their first Daddy Daughter Dance. John was decked out in his suit and Lindsey was sporting her new red velvety dress with a little bow in front. John's best friend Blair and his daugther Bailey were also attending. We all met up at the Childrens Museum around 5:45 for pictures. Several moms were lingering outside ohhhing and ahhhing at every little girl and daddy that went in.

John said it was very well organized and amazingly not too crazy inside given that there were probably 50 - 75 little girls under the age of 6! They had a catered dinner, dancing, crafts, t-shirts and door prizes. Lindsey was a little young for most of the activities, but she seemed to have a great time and even made me (with some help from Dad of course) a pretty little picture holder. She fell in love with this one room with a large tree house in it and even started to go down slides!

We picked up our loved ones at 9 pm. They were still full of energy and not ready to go home. As Lindsey made a break for it to get back inside, John informed me she was tough to keep up with. I couldn't help myself, I had to say it, "You know I do that everyday, all day, right?"

After a quick detour to visit MiMi Betty and a quick change into our PJ's (note to all Moms out there, if you are not already packing PJ's and toothbrush in a bag in your car, start now. Thanks to Brandi for teaching me that!) Lindsey was out before we made it to the first stoplight and slept until 10 am the next morning.

At first there was a part of me that was sad that I couldn't go in and watch them. Looking back now, it was good for us. It gave John and Lindsey some quality time together, gave John a better appreciation of what I do on a daily basis (I hope anyway) and gave me a much needed opportunity to go to dinner, have adult conversation and drink a real soda without having to worry about someone wanting a sip!

Friday, January 23, 2009

My Favorite Handy Man

When I married John, it was for many reasons, far too many to list :) Never did I imagine in my wildest dreams that he was such a handy man!

We both knew when we bought a house built in 1969 there would be a lot to do. I hate to admit it but the majority, well pretty much all of it has fallen on John's shoulders. He has worked tirelessly to make our house more of a home, a home that doesn't look like it was built in 1969. He has:
  1. Revamped our interior doors (door work is tricky, don't let anyone fool you, anytime you take something that has been on a hinge for almost 40 years you are bound to have problems)
  2. Stripped, sanded, primed and painted almost half of the exterior trim (thanks to our understanding neighbors who are kind enough to put up with a half and half house)
  3. Textured and painted our guest bathroom, as well as hung a mirror. Yeah we can see ourselves. (Here is one of the few places I helped, I stripped the wallpaper off! Uggg)
  4. Worked to get our yard back in shape. It was pretty neglected for a long period of time and has needed some TLC. He recently trimmed back the holly bushes in front of the house and it looks so different. Why do people plant holly bushes anyway?
  5. Organized our office, complete with hanging pictures and connecting all of my docking station components. It looks amazing and was such a sweet surprise.

There is more that he has done, but these are the big highlights. There is still more to do, but I just wanted to say thank you to my favorite handy man for being so sweet and doing so much for me and Lindsey.