My Real Life

April 27, 2011


Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 9:32 am

In our town, the main drag is lined with these beautiful, white trees.

They really are lovely to see as you drive or walk down the street.

Good town planning, in my humble opinion.



April 26, 2011


Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 7:05 am

After dinner, last night, Monkey Girl begged me to go to the library.

We had been there over the weekend and while the kids are looking for their own books and movies, I always pop a book or two in the bag that I think one of them will like.

I’m usually right, but have had a few misses.

Anyway, I picked out two books, this past weekend that I was sure Monkey Girl would like.  One was a graphic novel and another was just a cool book where the story was told through letters and journal entries, etc.

I was right with both.

So, she read one of them yesterday and finished the second today and she was dying to go back, because the one she finished today was Book 2 in a series, and she wanted to know if they had Book 1.

So, after we cleaned up, Real Man went outside with the big boys to have a catch and Tiny and the girl and I headed to the library.

We found the first book in the series, along with seven other books by the same author.

She. Was. Thrilled.

They didn’t have the other one that the other author wrote, but she walked her confident little self up to the librarian and asked her to put a hold on it when it was returned.

As we waited for the elevator to come (we had the stroller, or we’d have used the stairs), she was shifting her weight from one foot to another.  I asked her if she was okay and she said, “Mom, I’m just so excited!  I can’t wait to start reading these!!!”

Immediately, I was transported back to being 10 years old, myself.

I believe I’ve already shared that at least two nights a week, my Dad would take me to the bookstore at the local strip mall called The Happy Booker (which I’m just now realizing is uncomfortably close to ‘The Happy Hooker’, thus sullying my childhood memory) to buy books.

I’d browse and select and we’d always leave with each of us holding at least two or three books.  (We’d also stop at the arcade and spend a good hour there, but that’s a post for another time.)

I, too, would bounce on my feet and run to the car and start reading as soon as possible.  Exactly like Monkey Girl.

So, tonight brought up feelings of nostalgia and made me love that particular reflection of myself that I saw in her.

Is it nurture or is it nature?

Does she love books because she is genetically disposed to love them more than almost anything else?  Because I do.  Because both of my parents do?


Is it because she has grown up used to seeing her mother, constantly, with a book in her hand?  Because, when she goes to her grandparents house, she has to make her way around the piles of books in her grandpa’s home office and library, and the couch is always still warm from where grandma was laying, and the book is still propped open to the page she was on when we arrived?

Maybe it’s a little of both?

Either way, I love it.


I’ll be the first to admit that I see other reflections of myself in Monkey Girl, as well.

When she’s annoyed with Monkey in the Middle, her voice is an exact replica of mine as she tells him to “Knock it off,” and the eye rolls and sighs are perfect imitations of her mother.

Children are definitely a reflection of their parents, and you don’t get to choose what aspects of yourself you’ll see when you look at them.

I think I’ll enjoy and encourage those reflections that warm my heart and will try to work on the reflections that make me cringe.

Because, as my mother always wished…

…I have a daughter just like me.

April 25, 2011

Egg Dying Party 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 7:18 am

On Saturday, the girls came over for Egg Dying party 2011.

It’s a tradition, among us, to dye Easter eggs together.

We don’t get to it every single year, however, this was the 20th anniversary of our egg dying parties.

Yes, when we were 19, we were getting together to dye Easter eggs.

It’s how we roll.

Of course, we let the kids go first.

There was dye and there were stickers and glitter and shrink wraps for the eggs.

Egg dying is serious business with me and the girls.

See how carefully Erin is contemplating her next dye move?

See Kim and Michaela debating the merits of using crayons to further glamourize the eggs?

Yes, egg dying is serious business to the almost 40 crowd.

Yet, in the end, almost 4 dozen eggs were dyed…

…and another round of fantastic memories were made.

(and I got to show off the baby)

April 23, 2011

April Showers

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 11:05 am

So, I’ll admit it.

My boys don’t get a bath every single night.

Look, it’s been wintry and cold.

They go to school, they come home and play board games or Wii or xBox or computer or read books.

They don’t get too dirty in the winter.

They wash their hands constantly and clean their faces and brush their teeth.

They are presentable and “clean enough.”

I’m not saying we go weeks without a bath, I’m just saying it’s not every night.

Life sometimes trumps bath.


Those days are over.

Way over.

The boys have discovered showers.

Actually, they shower every summer at the beach house in the outdoor shower.

However, they somehow never made the connection between that shower and the two at home.

So, they continued to have baths.

Then, last week, Monkey in the Middle came home from baseball and Monkey Girl and I wrinkled our noses at each other as he ran past us.

I told him he needed a shower because he smelled like sweat and a shower would be quicker than a bath.

He thought it would be fun, and of course, because Monkey in the Middle was having one, Baby Monkey HAD to have one, so we said Middleman would go first, then it would be Baby Monkey’s turn.

Real Man helped the boys out with those first showers, and it went great, so the next time I figured they had it.

Next day, the boys are asking to take showers as soon as they woke up.

I was able to hold them off until they had played outside for the day and were settling in for the night.

Again, Middleman went first.

Baby Monkey waited.

And waited.

And waited.

See, I thought no one could ever take a longer shower than Monkey Girl.

I was wrong.

When he was finally done, we had a talk about water conservation and the corresponding length of showers.

Then, Baby Monkey took his shower.

Guess what?


Longer than Monkey in the Middle.

Me:  “Baby Monkey…you about done?”

BM: “Not yet.  I’m washing my feet!”

Me:  “Okay, hurry up, though.”

Five Minutes Later

Me:  “Baby Monkey…you about done?”

BM:  “Not yet.  I’m washing my hands!”

(Which got me to thinking…do people make a point of actually washing their hands in the shower?  I mean, isn’t the whole shower a long session of hand-washing?)

Me:  “You don’t need to wash your hands.  They get clean while you wash your body.”

BM:  “No.  I need to wash my hands, then I’m done.”

Five Minutes Later

Me:  “Um, I thought you were just washing your hands and then you were all done.”

BM:  “Um…I’m washing…I’m washing…”

Leading to me opening the shower curtain and peeking in to find Baby Monkey laying on the floor of the shower, on his belly.

BM:  “Look Mommy!  I’m swimming!”

Me:  “Out.”

I’m not sure if Baby Monkey actually washed anything that day, but hey, the water had to have rinsed away some dirt, right?

Since then the showers have shortened a bit in length, which is a good thing, because these boys want showers all the time.

Monkey in the Middle gets home from school and does his homework as quickly as possible and then says “Can I take my shower now?”

I remind him he has baseball and he can take a shower after baseball.

His response?

“I’ll just take two!”

We’ll wade our way through  these showers and keep them to a maximum of one per day, per child, until the teenage years when I might be begging the boys to take more than one a day, just to keep my gag reflex in check.

(I teach 8th graders…I know of what I speak.)

By then, we’ll have 3 boys needing showers and a teenage girl monopolizing the bathroom.

Oh, it’s gonna be fun!

April 22, 2011

Five Question Friday

Filed under: Five Question Friday — Amy @ 9:34 am
1. What is your favorite Easter tradition?
My favorite Easter tradition happens at my church.
Every year, at the end of the service, the choir sings the Hallelujah chorus.
My church choir ain’t your run of the mill church choir.
It is something to behold…with your ears.
Anyway, we sing the Hallelujah chorus and people in the congregation are welcome to sing along.
It gives me goosebumps every time and brings a tear to my eye.
Beautiful music does it to me every single time.

2. Are you a “shower” or a “long, hot bath” kind of person?
I bring in a book and soak away.
Love it.

3. Can you parallel park and if so when is the last time you did it?
Pleased to say I’m quite good at parallel parking, despite what my early years of driving may have foreshadowed.
I can fit that minivan into spots that defy reality.
Did it yesterday, as a matter of fact.
So, yes, I can.

4. What is your favorite Easter candy?
Uh, Reeses Peanut Butter eggs.
Ask me a hard one.

5. Easter: do you go all out with the Easter Bunny or focus on the religious part of the holiday?
About 50/50, I guess.
The monkeys head to their church with Real Man, I go to my church to sing in the choir and they all know the story of Easter and why we celebrate.
However, they love their Easter baskets, and the egg hunt at their cousins house and they fall asleep the night before with visions of chocolate bunnies and finding colored eggs.
It’s a good balance.

April 20, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Filed under: Wordless Wednesday — Amy @ 10:30 am

April 19, 2011

To Sir, With Love

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 10:38 am
Tags: ,

Okay, perhaps I’m overreacting here.

He’s not exactly going from crayons to perfume.

(…and if you don’t get that reference, then you are missing out on one of the greatest movies and songs of all time…)


I signed Baby Monkey up for Kindergarten today.

He went back with the teacher to answer questions and hop on one foot with his eyes closed and do all of those other things that, apparently, mean that you are ready for Kindergarten.

I was sure they’d bring him right back out and say, “Um, there must be a mistake.  This boy is just a baby!  He’s not ready for Kindergarten.  Bring him back in a few years, because, clearly, this boy is your baby.”

But, they didn’t.

They brought him back out and said “He did great!  What a great kid!  Can’t wait to see him here next year!”

And while that brought a rush of pride to my heart, I could also feel a little piece of my heart crack.

Another one of my babies…

Growing up,

Moving on,

Becoming independent of his Mama.

And while I know the job of Mama is to give them wings to fly, and I think I’m doing a pretty darn good job of that, inside, I just want to be with them every second of every day and hug them and kiss them and snuggle them and never let them go.

It’s a tough day for Mama, but a great day, nonetheless.

April 15, 2011

Five Question Friday – Not Today

Filed under: Five Question Friday — Amy @ 5:12 pm

I wasn’t inspired by today’s questions for Five Question Friday.

So, I’ve decided to skip it.

Writing something that doesn’t seem interesting to me doesn’t make sense.

Unless, of course, I’m being paid to do it.

Then, as long as I wasn’t morally opposed, I’d write it.

For the purposes of this blog, however, not happening.

So, I guess that’s that, for today!

April 14, 2011

One Word Thursday

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 8:05 am


April 12, 2011

Monkey See, Monkey Do

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 9:31 am
Tags: , ,

So, the little brother hero worship of the big brother has reached epic proportions in our house.

Baby Monkey doesn’t even try to be smooth in his desire to be like his brother.

Me:  “Baby Monkey, what would you like for dessert?”

Baby Monkey:  “I’ll have whatever Monkey in the Middle is having.”

Me:  “He may not have anything.”

Baby Monkey:  “Then, I won’t have anything either.”

Me:  “Baby Monkey, what are you going to play?”

Baby Monkey:  “I’ll just wait until Monkey in the Middle gets home from school and I’ll play what he plays.”

Me:  “He’s not going to be home for an hour.”

Baby Monkey:  “That’s okay.  I can wait.”

And on and on it goes.

He’ll grow out of it, I know.

But, right now, it’s pretty cute.

Because, as far as people to imitate go, Monkey in the Middle is a darn good choice.

Next Page »

Theme: Rubric. Get a free blog at