I don't proofread my posts before I publish them... cause I keep my thoughts au naturale.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Febreze for the Holidays

Kids smell.  Animals smell.  Men smell... everyone smells.  Aside from reupholstering all your furniture, putting in new carpet, hosing down the curtains and throwing all the smelly people out of your home, there's not a lot you can do... so you think.

If you've never used Febreze, I'm not sure where you've been.  I've been using Febreze spray since it first came on the market.  You know the commercials where the people are lying on the floor sniffing the carpet and not wanting to move?- yeah, it smells that good!

Anyway, like any great invention, it inspires more great ideas.  Febreze has more products than just spray out there now and they also have a variety of scents. They offer a variety of candles, plug-ins (NOTICEables), fabric refreshers and air fresheners.  If you want to keep your house smelling like something other than what inhabits it, here are some great ideas:

The Febreze Holiday Collection is the perfect finishing touch to your holiday home
  • Discover decorating tips and ways to make your home more inviting for the holidays with videos from design expert Candice Olson at Walmart.com/Febreze
  • Refresh your home with six warm and inviting scents
    • Apple Spice & Delight: The warming scent of fresh-baked apples coated with sweet cinnamon (available only online)
    • Cozy Vanilla Sugar: Sweet as notes of vanilla that comfort you like a cocoon of blankets
    • Cranberries and Frost: Rich as ripe cranberries and frost on a white winter’s day
    • Glistening Alpine: As soothing as a tree-lined mountainside glistening with the scent of pine
    • Winter Magic & Glow: Crisp as sunshine-lit icicles in fresh, frosty air
    • Holiday Bloom & Cheer: As cheerful as a chorus of holiday aromas blended with winter blossoms
     


*These Febreze products, information, and two gift packs have been provided by Febreze.

Friday, December 28, 2012

2013 New Year's Resolutions

I tend to only make resolutions that I'm pretty sure I can accomplish.  Of course I always wanna resolve to lose weight, but let's be honest... who sticks to that resolution passed the first week?  If it happens, yay, if it doesn't happen, boo.

So this year I am making four more realistic and do-able resolutions.

1) Be nicer to my husband.  I have issues.  I'm hard to live with.  I don't like people.  But I chose to marry my husband and really, I can't imagine a better catch.  He loves me unconditionally, he loves my children like his own (well, one is his), he is a good provider, a hard worker and he would do anything for me.  Sure he annoys the crap outta me a lot, but anyone that doesn't completely agree with their spouse is annoying, am I right?  And although when he is grumpy it is hard for me to bite my tongue and not wanna throw him out the nearest window, I'm going to try my best to be nicer to him both to his face and behind his back.

No one tell him about this resolution- he doesn't read my blog, so don't be snitching on me!

2) Blog more and blog better.  I have three blogs.  This one, 365 Queries and my anonymous mental health blog.  I go through phases when I feel like blogging and when I don't.  Aside from reviews, which I've tried to be more selective about, I only blog if I feel I have something good to say.  I don't want to force out some blah blog about some menial topic like the weather.  I took a grad class last semester (I got an A, thank you very much!) that was all about writing for the web.  I learned so many good tips about being an effective blogger and social media persona!  Hopefully I can work on implementing these- I've been taking baby steps.

3) Play with my kids more.  I have issues.  "Play" is not a word that often enters my vocabulary, let alone my way of thinking.  Although I love my parents and thing they did a lot of things right, I can not recall a single instance when they played with me.  I'm sure they did when I was really little, but after that, I don't remember any form of interaction that involved fun having.  I was fortunate to have two older brothers who would play with me, though.  I can tell that when I do play with my children it means so much to them.  My sons are already happy-go-lucky and affectionate, but my daughter tends to be a little more reserved with those emotions.  But when I play with her, I find that she really feels happy and afterwards is very loving towards me.  I like it!

4) Finish my masters.  Now this is easier said than done.  I'm done with the grad class portion where I have to meet my hour requirements.  But I'm still waiting on someone to get on board with my capstone.  I don't know if it is because I burned bridges when I withdrew from the university in 2010 and no one wants to work with me.  I understand that many of the professors are legitimately busy, but nonetheless... I am hitting brick walls.  In theory I could be done at the end of this semester.  Is it likely?  No.  Unless I can find someone to direct my capstone by Jan. 14, it's a no go.  Then comes summer semester... and if I still can't find anyone... fall... then spring... you get my drift.  I just wanna be done with it so that my boss will quit harassing me and I can have more teaching opportunities.  Plus I'd like to start on my masters in sociology as well.

Well, that about sums it up.  I have a few little things here and there that I think about, like not caring so much about having shitty "friends" (there are a couple that aren't), being a better teacher, being more positive... but those are kind of lifelong ambitions.

Anyone wanna share their resolutions?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Guilt and the chubby guy in a red suit.

You know one word that probably doesn't come to mind when people think about Christmas?

GUILT
 I'm sure a few of you reading this are thinking, "um, I've totally been saying this for years!"  Okay, well to those of you who haven't... this blog's for you.  I have a huge issue with guilt as it is.  In fact, my new therapist pointed out to me the first visit how many times I used the words guilt and guilty when talking about my feelings.  I had never realized what a huge "burden" it was to me until she pointed it out.  But this blog is more centered around guilt and Christmas, so I will forge ahead.

My first point about guilt is the receiving end.  I've had this problem for YEARS... if my mom gets me a gift I don't like, I feel huge amounts of guilt.  I know she put a lot of thought into it, spent her hard earned money on it and was probably quite pleased.  So I feel awful if I don't like something.  I think that this is the reason why to this day I abhor (and I mean ABHOR) opening gifts in front of people.  I don't like having to fake a smile if I don't like something, but I don't want to hurt someone's feelings either.  What tends to happen if I get a gift I don't like is that I put it in a closet for a year until I can let go.  Then I feel guilty getting rid of it, but feel better about not hoarding things I don't need.  It doesn't really bug me if anyone else gets me a gift I don't like... because it's kind of expected.

Next item of guilt: gift giving.  I've never really realized how much guilt this brings until this year.  I don't really emphasize Santa with my kids.  I don't want to "lie" to them, but I don't want them to miss out on something that the kids around them are excited about.  So I don't really tell them about Santa, I just don't NOT tell them about Santa.  I let them think what they like based on the world around them, books, peers, mass media.  They can't even make a trip to the doctor without being asked about Santa.  But this year I was privy to seeing what both kids asked for from Santa.  Each only asked for one thing and guess what- I hadn't bought either of those things!  They were definitely not expensive items, I just didn't know they wanted them.  I'm not big on the "make me a list of 100 things you want and I'll buy 10."  I prefer at the age my kids are now to buy things I think they will like based on what their interests are.  Now if I noticed them eying something on the shelf at WalMart, I might keep that in mind, but I don't ask them specifically for a list.  I like to think I'm in tune with what my kids like.  But anyway, I felt guilty knowing that neither of them got the one thing they asked for.  Well, as luck would have it, what my daughter asked for was actually something I got for my son for his upcoming birthday.  He didn't ask for it, I just thought he'd like it.  So quick wrapping paper swap and under the tree it went with her name on it.  That meant he had one gift less than her... which meant I needed to get him another one... which left room for the thing he asked for.
  
Does this make it seem like my kids are spoiled?  I don't think so.  But it alleviated a bit of my guilt, and that's what I wanted.  I also feel guilty if I don't think the gift I got another family member is something they really want, but there's not much I can do about that.

Anyone else get Christmas anxiety due to guilt?    


Book Review: Not Your Mother's Book...On Being a Stupid Kid

Not Your Mother's Book... On Being a Stupid Kid created by Dahlynn and Ken McKowen

How many times have you thought about things you did when you were young that you would never share with your parents?  Or maybe you are willing to tell them, but not until you've moved out of the house and feel like they can laugh about it with you.  I know I have plenty of those stories, but I'd never share them with my parents!  I have told my friends and my husband, but I wouldn't dare tell my parents!  Not that what I did was illegal or immoral, just that I don't want them to shake their head and think they raised a moron.

What I liked about this book is that it is comprised of stories that the creators have looked over, chosen as the best and edited for the book based on what I'm sure numbered in the 100s.  They narrowed it down to 59.  From the very first story, I was hooked and here's why.  My ex-husband's grandpa used to tell stories of his childhood.  Of course, you never hear about these wild stories until you become and adult and then your parents and grandparents are ready to share.  Anyway, he used to tell us about how you could drive cars across the Mississippi in his home town because the ice would get so thick.  I kept thinking about how crazy that seemed and I would never have the guts to do it!  Well, guess what... apparently a lot of guys had the guts to do it back in the day (and probably today).  One of the first stories was a similar one about a group of boys who had nothing to do one day, not enough gas to drive very far, so they decided to drive on a frozen lake.  I won't tell you what happened, but obviously since he was able to tell the story, he survived the experience!  

The book is categorized into the types of events that the different stories pertain to and each are told from the culprits point of view.  If you ever did something off the wall, then I'm sure there are at least a couple of these stories you can relate to!  I would definitely recommend this for your own read, but think it would also be a great gift (think Christmas!) for any adult.  I almost said it would be a good gift for a teen, but then realized they might get ideas... so scratch that unless you think they can be trusted not to pull any crazy stunts!  
 
"Theres nothing worse than getting caught with your hand in the proverbial cookie jar, yet alone confessing to all those stupid things you did when you were a kid and lived to tell about. Yes, you know where the bodies are buried. 

Inside, youll read stories about crazy capers, double-dog dares and outlandish adventuresthose youthful escapades you never shared with your parents! Thus the reason to hide this book from your youngsters and especially your teenagers . . . you might give them ideas!

Exactly 59 authors from all over the US and Canada contributed original stories that have been published in the newly released book, Not Your Mother’s Book . . . On Being a Stupid Kid, the lead title in the edgy new entertainment series by creators Dahlynn and Ken McKowen"

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Restoring some faith in humanity.

So I have to say that lately I've been bombarded by how selfish people can be and also how lackadaisical people can be.  It just blows my mind how people don't realize that you can't just take, you have to give... it's called karma because when people do nice things for you, treat you with respect or do things that they wouldn't normally do just because they are good people... and you don't reciprocate- don't be surprised if your life doesn't come out roses.  I think this is generally because shitty people make shitty life choices and decisions and it crashes down on their shoulders eventually.

Anyway, but on a positive note.  I recently met this gal through my grad class.  We instantly clicked and although I never get my hopes up, she seems like someone I'd like to be friends with for a long, long time.  Anyway, she has really kept my spirits up and made me laugh (which is a huge deal in my book.)  Well, last night I drove 100 miles to class on a different campus just because she wanted me to.  I thought it would be nice to see her again (she lives a distance away) and it would be courteous of me to do so.


At the end of class right before I had to make the 100 mile trip back home at 8:30 pm in the dark in unfamiliar territory... my phone died.  I was a bit freaked.  Not only would the hubster be worried sick for 2 hours, but if something happened out in the middle of these podunk 55 mph highways, I'd be SOL.

Enter new friend... she (out of nothing but pure goodness of heart) GIVES me her car charger.  WHO DOES THAT???  She does!  I was so thankful and blown away that I have not stopped thinking of it.  It has somewhat restored my faith in humanity and I'd also like to thank her parents, cause they obviously did something right in raising her.

Thank you, New Friend.


Monday, November 26, 2012

A Little Ditty About BPD

As many of my loyal followers know (I'm sure there are sooooo many of you- haha), I have bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder.  Well anyway, I think most people know what bipolar disorder (BD) is to some extent, but I don't think as many people are aware of what borderline personality disorder (BPD) really is.

I found this interesting article through some social media circles I follow and I wanted to share a tidbit out of it that I find to be a big aspect to my personality and my BPD.

Well, first of all, here's a bit about common "symptoms of BPD."

"Characteristics of Borderline Personality Disorder. Is there someone in your life who has five or more of the following characteristics?
  1. This person makes frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment.
  2. Their life is filled with unstable and intense interpersonal relationships characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation.
  3. They have a persistently unstable self-image.
  4. They are impulsive in two of the following areas that are potentially self-damaging (spending, sex, substance abuse, shoplifting, binge eating, reckless driving)
  5. They threaten or make gestures toward suicidal behavior or self-mutilation (ex: cutting)
  6. Their moods tend to be reactive and include a mixture of depression, anxiety, rage and despair, lasting from a few hours to a few days.
  7. They have chronic feelings of emptiness
  8. They respond with intense anger which may manifest in physical fights
  9. They dissociate when under stress, which means they detach from a situation and don’t remember it later. Your memory of a particular incident may be very different than their memory of it.
Having five or more of these traits are indicators of a person whose personality fits the diagnostic criteria for Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). You may also see other attributes that are not part of the actual diagnostic code (DSM IV), but are common to the disorder. Many of these are related to sexual or physical abuse in early life. The person may suffer from deep shame which they are either consumed by or deny. Inside they feel worthless, isolated, empty, but will guard against exposing that inner truth to themselves or others"

First off, I want to point out that I was never abused in any way in early life, just wanted to clarify that!  Secondly, I only have 8 of these traits, so let's be thankful for that!  

Okay, so the main point I wanted to get to from the article, which I have found many similar studies on was about BPDs being able to "read people" very well.  I have always found that I had this knack, but never knew that it was so highly associated with BPD.  So here is the excerpt (from same article linked above) of interest on that: 

Some BPDs have an uncanny ability to read people so well that they can uncover the other person’s vulnerabilities. In Paul Mason’s book, “Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About has Borderline Personality Disorder,” he describes this sensitivity as an “astute ability to identify and use social and nonverbal cues of others. BPDs can empathize well with others and often understand and respect how others feel, and they can use these skills to “see through others.” It is thought that many adults who were repeatedly physically and/or sexually abused as children developed these social and emotional antennae as a survival strategy. This helped them predict and therefore prepare themselves for what their abusers were about to do.”

I found this to be quite fascinating and I was so glad to have my feelings on this reaffirmed.  Isn't it an awesome feeling when you learn something is a well-known idea when you have had a hard time convincing people of it when they roll their eyes behind your back and think you're delusional?

Anyway, thank you for taking time to enlighten yourself on BPD.  I'd love to hear thoughts on this! 
 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Today I Am Thankful for...

I know that this is totally cliche, but I gotta throw this out there...  you know, toss my hat in the ring...

Today I am thankful for:

  1. My husband: he is probably the most helpful guy I've ever met.  He does so much for me that it makes me feel lazy.  His love is unconditional and he tells me about 50 times a day.  He almost makes me believe that I'm beautiful, but he is the beautiful one on the inside and out.  He has never hesitated in his love for my children and he is one of the best dads I've ever seen.  This guy of mine, he is not afraid to do "girly" housework because he understands that we are a team and therefore should function as one.  He likes my cooking, he laughs at my jokes and although there are days that I would like to punch him in every place that it hurts, I wouldn't trade him for any other man on the planet!
     
  2. My kids:  first of all, I have never seen a group of such good looking kids!  I have been known to say that obviously I can't create an ugly child.  I must have adorable oozing out my gene pool.   And of course they drive me nuts from time to time (who doesn't), but I do think they are pretty awesome.  A is so sweet to me when she wants to be and makes it clear that I am the center of her universe (unless she is).  She shows me unconditional love and reminds me so much of myself that I worry what the teenage years hold.  L is adorable in his innocence and sweetness.  He's so happy-go-lucky and says the most random off the wall things.  He is very loving and affectionate and it's a rare day when he shows his temper.  He does things like rinse his dishes in the sink and change the toilet paper roll.  And of course, Baby H... although he doesn't do much right now, he's still a great baby!  His smile melts my heart, he is clearly on his way to genius and each day he does something that is so cute it reminds me of what a great family I have and how blessed I am.


  3. My parents:  although he grumbles about it immensely, my dad has been known to loan me a buck or two here and there when I am in dire need.  Of course I pay him back, but sometimes it may take me awhile.  My parents are always there to babysit even when I think we've worn out our welcome.  When I started the semester at work and realized the first day that the daycare was a nightmare, they quickly made it possible to alleviate some of my worries while I looked for a new option.  And of course I recently mentioned all the great things my mom does for me such as provide great friendship, listen to me complain and gossip with me like we are old biddies in a beauty parlor.


  4. The regulars:  my health, having a roof over my head, a job that I love, the ability to have been in college for the majority of 12 years, food, friends, certain luxuries like a car, televisions, phones, blah blah and a partridge and a pear tree.  
I have a great many things to be thankful for this year and I'm sure many of you reading this do too- it doesn't do anyone any good to dwell on the negative, but we tend to.  Instead, especially on days like this, we should rejoice in all the great things that we do have.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Monday, November 19, 2012

This year on my birthday...

So, it's another year, another birthday...

Since I have been an adult living on my own (like 12 years now)... I'm pretty sure I have cried on every single birthday.  It's not about getting old, it's just the realization that each year that goes by I am not where I want to be in life.  I don't like to think that it is my fault that this is true, but I have no one else to blame because I make all my choices in life, no one makes them for me.

I don't think I cried last year... but I can't remember- that was a whole year ago.

And I don't think it can all be chalked up to being bipolar either.  I just think that I overthink and so when I think about the things that I think about on my birthday, it really makes me think... and so I cry.

Anyway, I am writing this the Friday before because I probably won't feel like blogging on the day of.   But this year, although I am thankful for a great great great many things in my life, there are still some things that I had hoped would be different by now.

See you next year and I will update you on 2013's success or not.



On a more positive note!!  Happy birthday to my mother... she was given the greatest gift the day I was born... yep, painful labor and a 10 lb baby.  What more could a mother ask for?

And despite the years of extreme torture I put her through and our quite different views on thing, I would have to say that my mom is my best friend.  Whenever something happens good or bad, my first thought is that I have to tell my mom.  Even when I know that she has no interest in the subject (like when I called her Friday night to tell her about the new Twilight movie) she pretends to care, and that's mostly what I need.  Like I said, we have polar opposite views on many many things, but she has been an excellent role model for me in life and I aspire to be as respected as she is.  I have the greatest respect for my mom and thinks that she has done so much good with her life.  I can't thank her enough for all the wonderful things she has done for my family and I...

Happy birthday, Mom!!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

5 Movies I Will Never Get Tired of Watching

Although this is an absolutely pointless blog post, I do want to share with you guys the 5 movies that I could watch a million times (not consecutively) and never get tired of them.  About 10 years ago I would have said Babe and Lord of the Rings (the first one) because I fell asleep to them every night.  I don't watch either of them anymore...  also, I'm not going to bother with accuracy in regards to name spellings or anything, cause I don't care right now.

So, in no particular order, here are the 5 movies and a little bit about why I think they are so awesome!

1.  Anchorman

I am not always a fan of Will Ferrell, but he happens to be in two of these movies.  I think my favorite thing he has done other than these was when he did Alex Trebek in Celebrity Jeopardy skits on SNL.  The completely random and off the wall things that are said in Anchorman are just so stupid they are hilarious.  I am pretty dang stoked about Anchorman 2.  I think Paul Rudd is dreamy and the whole cast of the first one was fantastic.  Remember when Brick killed a guy?

2.  Bridesmaids

Although this is probably my last choice out of the 5, it's a doozy for mostly two reasons: Melissa McCarthy and the cute guy with the accent.  Again, McCarthy's off the wall, what in the world comments just make me giggle.  Did you know the guy she wanted on the plane is her husband in real life?  True story.

3.  The Other Guys


 Oh man, where to I begin?  Are you thinking what I'm thinking?  Aim for the bushes... this movie is so ridiculous it's ridiculous... and I love it.  Mark Wahlberg should only be allowed to do comedies.  It's one of those great thinks like with Robert DeNiro, Christopher Walken, Bruce Willis, Al Pacino... you are so used to them in serious roles that when they are in comedies it just blows your mind.  Michael Keaton's silliness was a gem too... and then the classic lines... you shot Derek Jeeter... he's a biracial angel!  Good times.

4.  Jack & Jill

I know, this one shocked me too!  I think I was bored one day and this was on, so I watched it.  I haven't found an Adam Sandler movie funny since I was 14, so this came out of left field that I thought it was so funny.  And the great thing about it is that my daughter loves watching it with me too.  I vow that one day I will have pets that I can name Poopsy and Pagogo.  I am using this photo because Johnny Depp has a great cameo where he is at a Lakers game with Al Pacino.  He's wearing a ridiculous Justin Bieber tee shirt and Jill asks him if he's from Duran Duran and he says yes.  I love me some Johnny Depp... but this movie was funny for many other reasons. 

5.  Bad Teacher

I think the first time I saw this I was really disappointed... but then the next 20 times I loved it!  For some reason, seeing Cameron Diaz play a money hungry deadbeat slacker is quite fun.  And her attitude about some things reminds me of myself.  I could never be quite so vicious, but still... and the chick who plays Amy Squirrel is great, Jason Siegel is great, Justin Timberlake is great, the dowdy teacher who wants to be cool is great  and the guy who plays the principal that I always confuse with Fred Willard is great.  The cast just makes the whole thing work out perfectly and the plot was actually pretty good as well.

The end.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Some Lucky Girl in 2028

...is going to get to marry my son.   Yes, he will be 30.  This is because he will have gone to school and established a good career before he gets mixed up with the likes of some she-devil girl!

I know I've mentioned how he drives me insane, but that is from a non-obsessive mom point of view.  But there are many ways that I can already tell he's going to be a great catch.  Those ways are:

  1. He'd adorable.  I mean, you've seen pictures.  The kid looks fabulous!
  2. He changes the roll of toilet paper when he uses up the last one- without being asked!
  3. He likes to rinse his own plate and put it in the dishwasher.
  4. He's affectionate.
  5. He's hilarious.
  6. He's always in a good mood.
  7. He likes to hold the door open for people.
  8. He offers to carry my bags for me.
  9. He's a cuddler.
  10. He likes babies.
Sure, he sometimes puts his shoes on the wrong feet, but I'm confident that by 30 he will get it figured out.  And not only will this girl be lucky that she gets to marry a guy as awesome as my son, but the icing on the cake is that she will get me as a mother-in-law!  I know how much of a big deal that is... believe me.  Sure, I might make her life hell from time to time because I'm always right, but I will also let her watch Golden Girls and gossip with me.  Of course, if I hate her, I will also be gossiping behind her back, but that's just how things go.

Again, you're welcome future daughter-in-law.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Honesty Really IS the Best Policy... Sometimes

I grew up being a huge liar.  Mostly it was little white lies, and initially I would blush and give myself away, but then I began to perfect the art so well that I think I convinced myself I was telling the truth sometimes.  When I met my ex-husband I had to my arse off quite a bit.  It's not that I felt like I had done something wrong, it's just that I know HE thought it was wrong.  I pride myself with having some sense, and I don't think I've ever done anything that was so stupid I can't get over it... except one big thing that I will always regret, but I thankfully can chalk that up to an extended manic episode.  Not that it makes what I did okay!  It's like people who cheat and say it was because they are drunk.  We all have a moral compass and if it was a good one, being drunk would never excuse any kind of behavior.  Clearly a lot of people lost their compasses somewhere in their childhood.  Well anyway, all of my crimes are victimless except for this one thing... and now you all wish you know what it was, but that is going to my grave my friends!

Anyway, so one of the biggest things I've learned in my life is that honesty is the best policy.  It started with my ex-husband.  When we met I lied lied lied to cover up things that he thought were wrong, but I didn't.  It was stupid, we were in high school, it was soooooo stupid.  But I didn't want him to get mad, so I would lie.  And then when he caught me lying, man did stuff hit the fan!  And he would always say, "I am more mad at you for lying than for what you did."  Then after that, I learned a lot from Judge Judy and she really did not like Liar Liar Pants on Fire..ers.   Then I started realizing, why should I have to lie?  I don't do anything BAD, so I shouldn't have to lie about it.  I have a pretty high opinion of myself (half the people I know probably think I'm a cocky bitch) and I don't think that there is anything I do that is malicious or BAD.  So why should I have to lie?   The only times I have felt like I needed to is when I knew the other person was super judgmental and I didn't wanna have to deal with the backlash.

With my current husband, he will say the same thing- he's more mad if I lie than for what I did.  Once again, I don't think I have wronged him in any way, but that is something he has to deal with.  I have passed this same theory on to other things in my life.  I find that I have a big issue with being lied to because it is SOOOOO disrespectful.  I am trying to teach my children about this, but of course they are afraid of getting "punished" when generally they are so bad at not being caught that they might as well tell the truth.

So I have this one student in my class this semester who breaks so many stereotypes.  I am so impressed and I truly think that his conscious decision to be honest, polite and respectful will get him far in life.  One day he clearly copied someone's vocab and did it in a hurry because he left off the ends of the definitions and it made no sense.  So I asked him about it and he said he did.  He had mentioned before that he doesn't like lying.  Anyway, so I have had an inkling about a few people in class who had been getting all their answers in the back of the book.  He is one of them.  He is pretty smart, so I think he does it because he wants to ensure good grades.  But then when review tests and mastery tests come up he doesn't know the material as well.  This chapter's answers were all varied, so when they came up with the exact "answers" from the back, it was totally obvious.  I took the 5 people in the hall one at a time and the generic response was, "I only look the ones up that stump me."  Well, it's not cheating, but I "lectured" them on how they don't learn from it.  Then I sent them on their way.  When I asked him, he flat out told me he does.  I greatly appreciated his honesty, gave him my short lecture and sent him on his way.  It just showed me how greatly I respect honesty in people.

To end this, I will quickly say that the only time I don't believe honesty is the best policy involves things you DON'T have to say.  For instance, if I think that someone is a complete loser living off the government and being lazy, I'm not gonna tell them... cause that would be malicious... it's true, but it would be malicious.

So, to sum up... maliciousness bad, honesty good.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Orajel Incident: Made for TV

I love my husband and it is with love that I post this story, because it was right off a TV comedy and sooooooooooo new dad typical...

Upon realizing that Baby H's inconsolability was due to the emergence of his first tooth, it was quickly decided that if he was going to go to sleep (and thusly if we were to get any sleep) we needed some Baby Orajel ASAP!

I had just showered and was in my jammy jammers sitting on the couch with Baby H, playing some Bruno Mars (his favorite) to try to get him to sleep.  He just seemed so exhausted and would randomly start crying like he had been pinched hard.  Poor guy!!!

So, since I was not appropriately attired, David decided to run up the block to the grocery store.  It is a chain, not a mom and pop store, so I was 99.99% sure that they had Baby Orajel.

While Baby H is fussing, it seems like the minutes are taking hours.  Finally David arrives and pulls out.... Baby Orajel TOOTH PASTE!  I laugh in a, "ooooooooooooh, David" kind of way.  I let him know (very nicely, which is shocking for myself) that it was toothpaste.  He claims that they did not have any other kind of Baby Orajel there... he offered to drive to a different grocery store a couple miles away.  I just couldn't do it... I had to get dressed and go back to the first store to prove to him that they had it... they just HAD to!

So we go...

And...

They have it!  We return the toothpaste and pay the difference for the right stuff.  I give him the $hit-eating grin that you know you would have a hard time holding back if you were in my position too.

We get home, rub some on Baby H's gums and BOOM- magic in a tube and he's been asleep 9 hours and counting...

My husband is so cute... lol.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Book Review: Notes to My Future Husband by The Coquette

I'm all for humorous books... I'm all for humorous books that are written in a super easy to read format.  Well, this book is both.  And although that is the case, I'm not saying it's perfect by any means... I like it, I love it, and I hate it.  Here's why:

This book was written by a woman (who is apparently a popular advice columnist on The Daily) who is letting her future husband know the low down on what being with her will entail.  According to the book she is currently single and had (what I interpreted as) a bitter breakup the last guy around.

Well, I definitely agree on a lot of her feelings.  A big wedding is dumb, I love red velvet cake, bachelor/bachelorette parties are great, guys should have guy nights after marriage with friends and girls should too.  The author is definitely pro separate, yet together lives.  She is very modern woman in her theories and does not take any of that macho bull hockey from guys (so she says.)

But here's my beef.  First and foremost, she keeps referring to her future husband as "dude."  I flippin' hate that... a lot.  Secondly, she seems... not... um... how do I put this nicely... like she's destined to be single forever.   Granted, I do think that there are plenty of guys who would be okay with her forward thinking attitude.  I think people can appreciate her openness and candor, but honestly, I think she's got a lot of things that she seems committed to being absolutes.  I think there are guys who would like some say on some of those topics.  And she seems a little too bossy and "bitchy" (her words, not mine.)  I wish her good luck in finding a guy... but she made it clear she can go through life without one.

Definitely a cute read~ light hearted and witty.  I actually gave it to my husband to read some of it just so that he realized he could have had it much worse, lol.

I just hope that the author doesn't find me, because apparently she is not afraid to "cut a bitch."

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Book Review: Poopendous by Artie Bennett

Normally, I don't like "toilet humor."  I try to redirect my kids from saying things that I might consider as gross or trashy.  Despite being about... poop... this book is adorable!  I am very much in love with books for kids that rhyme... but let me clarify... books that rhyme in a GOOD way.  Too many authors force rhymes, but in this book, the rhymes flow like... poop?  EW, me.

So when I received this book to review, I was very excited and immediately read it to A & L.  Although it is labeled as being for preschool age, A liked it/understood it far more and she is almost 7.  I think some of the animals and concepts were a little over L's head.  What was great about it for A was that about a year or so ago she was telling me about the different pets she wanted and asking me if they poop.  I kept telling her that every animals poops and she was not too happy about that.

This is Artie's number two book... his first being The Butt BookPoopendous has received many rave reviews (including this one!)  I'm planning to ask L's preschool teacher if she would like to read it to the class.
 

Poopendous is definitely a keeper for us!  I'm excited to read it to Baby H when he starts to potty train.

MOTR Grade: A

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The F-Bomb Debacle

For the umpteenth time, I will clarify... I am not a prude.

I suppose I have a few conservative views on things, but if you know me, you know I'm not a prude.  I think I make my stances on many topics very clear, but this one has been making me think lately.

When I hear someone use profanity, the context is usually what either makes my jaw drop, makes my eyes pop, makes me cringe or I just go with the flow.  Here are a couple instances I am referring to.

1) Casual conversation.  If my close friends swear, it doesn't really bother me.  I know that just like saying like... I was like so mad... so like when we were outside... I'm like 99% positive that he is HIV positive.. it becomes a habit.  I don't fault them for it unless they are being loud in public around strangers... then I try to hide my face.

2) On the job.  I would never swear on the job.  My mama taught me better!  LOL.  I'm sure it matters what job it is.  For instance, I work with mostly freshmen in college and to me they are still young and impressionable.  Therefore I like to provide a profanity-free environment.  I think I'm fun and that they like me (so the suck ups say) and I can do that without swearing.  I know there are jobs where it's not taboo.  If you work with other adults, they can handle it.

3) Around children. Now this is where I lose the friends and make people hate me.  I really don't think you should swear around children of any age.  Being a role model is what shapes these little IDs into developing their SUUUUUUUPERego.  Unless you want your kid to be a potty mouth, keep your potty mouth zipped.  Let's have a little tact, folks.

I am not the anti-profanity preacher here.  I love language and its various uses, but I think profanity should be like exclamation points... emphatic, but if you use it too much it becomes pointless.  I can recall instances when someone has used profanity in front of me and it was so unexpected it rattled my cage a wee bit.  I had never heard it from that person before, so I was caught off guard.

I am not perfect.  But here's the thing... when I drop an F bomb, you know it's about to go down, Charlie Brown.  I have to be super angry to let that fly and I tend to only reserve this for my husband... because I don't want anyone else to think I'm a potty mouth.  I also occasionally let the SHIZ hit the fan when I forget something, stub my toe, etc.  If my kids have heard any word from me, it's probably that.

This little thought tidbit I am sharing with you probably takes root in my own upbringing.  As a child we were unable to even say the word "butt."  To do so was grounds for quite the verbal backlash.  Although as we got older we used potty words with our friends, we knew better than to use them at home.  I recall one time my sister was in high school and she told me to go to Hell.  I tattled on her and my dad informed me that it was a place, not a bad word.

So thank you to my conservative parents who taught me that it's only okay to use profanity when you are yelling at the TV during a football game.  I am pretty okay with this life lesson.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

All I Want for Christmas is... Two Free Hands!!!

First and foremost, let me apologize to all my paraplegic readers... yes, I'm a wuss.

I do not like to be trapped... it's just one of those many things I don't like.  Trap me in a room, watch me go bat shizzzzz crazy.  Trap me in crummy relationship, watch me load up a uhaul by myself.  Trap me in a coffin underground with only a small supply of air to last me until a detective figures out all the clues in time to save my life... nuts.

So with that in mind, I hate being trapped on my fanny holding a baby 24/7 or trapped with one hand available to do anything... dishes, cleaning... I am not your old fashioned lady who is okay with having a child strapped to her hip.  My worst frustration is not being able to type with two hands.  Between trying to keep up with this blog, blogging for school, doing my school assignments, responding to the neverending emails in my inbox or trying to grade papers and enter the grades onto the computer... I need both hands!  Hunting and pecking just doesn't fly.

My two hand options are- go into work early or stay late so I can type or get up super early/stay up late so I can have two hands free.  But then comes the pick and choose time of what do I need to do more with those two free hands?  Should I clean, fold laundry, strangle someone or use the computer?

While you ponder that, I'll get back to you.  Baby H just woke up and now I have no hands available.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

My Daughter Drives Me Crazy!!!

If you recall, 8 months ago I similarly posted that my son drives me crazy.  Oh, how the tables have turned.  My son will be 5 in January and he is a sweet and easy-going little boy.  He loves preschool, he stays in bed all night and he pretty much agrees to anything you ask him to do.  I like to think of him as an angel now, lol.

My daughter, however, is another story...

Once again, children are a gift from God, blah blah blah.  Now that I got that formality out of the way, let me tell you about my mini-me.  She will be 7 in December, but I'm pretty sure she has aged a decade in the past year.  The attitude!!!  Here's my biggest beefs with this child:

  1. Socks.  Every fourth school day she has P.E.  Normally she wears flip flops, sandals or slip on shoes and no socks.  On P.E. day she has to wear sneakers and socks.  She complains about it EVERY TIME.  Then she will spend a good 10 minutes fiddling with the seams until my head explodes or I put her shoes on and drag her out the door.  And then with the shoes she spends another 10 minutes messing with the velcro straps.  Now, I did not like wearing shoes and socks when I was little (still don't), but I don't recall throwing a fit about it when I had to.  I just took them off as soon as I got home.
  2. Arguing.  She argues about EVERYTHING.  And I mean Ev...er...y...THING.  You tell her the sky is blue and she will tell you that it's actually gray.  So when I tell her to put her socks on for P.E. day she will try to tell me that she really doesn't need socks and she can wear the sneakers without them.  If we are running late she will try to tell me that maybe if her brother went to a different school we wouldn't be late.  Very contrary.
  3. She is such a ... meaniehead.  This little girl can be vicious.  It's amazing that someone so young can read people and exploit their weaknesses.  She knows what buttons to push and boy does she!  She doesn't really do this much with me, but she does it with pretty much everyone else.  She can be so mean to her brother.  Then it boggles my mind when she is mean to her friends because I would think she would want to keep them as friends.  I wouldn't want to play with her!
  4. She picks on her brother.  As mentioned above, she is super mean to L.  Some days when she's mad she takes all her frustration out on him and makes him cry on a regular basis.  She will tell him he can't come in her room and when her friends are over she will tell them to be mean to him too.  Poor little guy looks up to her and loves her so much and that's what he gets in return.
 These are just the highlights.  I know that she has A LOT of similar characteristics to myself.  David even says she makes the same faces as I do.  Her attitude doesn't phase me, because I know she's trying to get a rise.  But some people can't let it go and have to react about everything.  And it's not about discipline, because I think I do a very good job disciplining my kids.  I don't know why she is such a grumpy gus.  I thought this attitude was reserved for teenagers.  It bums me out because she is so smart and funny and it's great when she shows her good side.  Sometimes she says things that are very profound and she is very wise for her age.

I'm wondering if this post will get the same kind of reaction as when I wrote about my son.  Are girls actually harder to raise than boys?  I've always thought it was the opposite.  I know as teenagers girls can be absolute witches, but I've met some boys that aren't very nice to their parents as teenagers either.

Who's in the same boat here?

Monday, October 1, 2012

The Slackery Cometh

To my readers and business affiliates:

I will apologize for the recent "slacking" and probably forthcoming as well.  Between work stuff, school stuff and communication stuff, I don't have a lot of time for internet usage.  My 3 month old is attached at the hip, which makes anything other than hunting and pecking virtually impossible.  I have to use my sparse times before I start teaching and after my classes are done for the day to get as much done as possible.

I have a lot to say, just no time to say it!!  Plus we just moved, so I have been using that baby napping time to try to put stuff away.

I will try to churn some pithy words out soon!

Don't forget about me!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

"Overwhelmed" is profanity.

whelm verb: to submerge, engulf

overwhelm verb (used with object) 

1. to overcome completely in mind or feeling: overwhelmed by remorse.

2. to load, heap, treat, or address with an overpowering or excessive amount of anything

I have an extreme abhorrence for the word "overwhelmed" but mainly when people try to use it in regards to me.  I had one of the top 5 worst experiences in my life happen about 3 years ago in grad school and a certain pompous meanie face with total social ineptitude had the gall to say that I might be "overwhelmed" with my work load and personal life.  I was livid!  And of course the other aspects of that incident left me wondering about humanity and how on earth people could be so vicious and unfeeling blows my mind.

Well the other day my new therapist used the word "overwhelmed," but in a question as in, "do you feel overwhelmed and is that causing...?"  And of course the answer is no.  I don't feel overwhelmed.  She wasn't saying it in a mean or accusing or negative way, so I won't fault her for that.

Although I think that people may assume I am overwhelmed, whether from my behavior, irritability, throwing things at walls, no, I am not overwhelmed.  I would never take on more than I can handle.  In fact, I thrive on being busy.  Yes, some days I want to just bum it out, but I can't stand the thought of lying in bed all day, sitting around in my pajamas all day, watching tv all day... maybe for the first part of the day I can sit and chill, but that's about it.  My mind begins to flood with the things that I could be doing but I am not.  

I work, but not full time.  I am taking 3 grad classes right now, but I should have been finished two years ago.  I have 3 kids, but they are pretty great kids and I have a wonderful husband who helps me immensely.  Sure I get a bit frustrated when I am inundated with questions and ideas thrown at me in a 30 second period of time.  Sure I get set off by little things time to time, but that has to do with my mental illnesses and not because I am completely overwhelmed.

So if you think I am, I am not.  I am as busy as I want to be.  Life is short and you gotta pack as much of it as you can and right now I think there are many other things in life I could be doing.  

Oh, and I've been having a great physical issue with having a complete lack of energy and my psychiatrist is an idiot (as they all seem to be so far) and she just keeps throwing wacky meds at me to try and help me out.  

But I'm not overwhelmed.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

My Wedding Day Was Ghetto Fantastic

I like to think of myself as a pretty laid back person.  And I think expensive weddings (or weddings in general) are a big stinkin' waste of money.  A dress you can only wear once?  Flowers that die?  Releasing doves, a 20 person orchestra...?  What is the point?  Isn't the reason people get married because they are in love and want to make that commitment?

Well, that brings me to yesterday.  David has been harassing me to marry him for quite awhile now and although I have a distaste in my mouth when I say the word "marriage" I thought- yeah, why not?  I love him, we have a baby together and I could see myself being fond of him for quite some time.  But neither of us wanted to waste money on a fancy shmancy wedding, let alone expect our parents to pay a dime!  (At least David SAID he didn't want a wedding, but I secretly think he did.)

Come to find out that an awesome, fantastic friend is ordained.  She agreed to marry us, I let David pick the date, we met for lunch yesterday and boom- we were married.  I asked a friend to be a witness and our waitress was the other witness.  We did spend a pretty penny on rings, but David insisted on that and since he is Mr. Moneybags, I could not argue against it.

Per our officiant's suggestion, we stopped at a local Casey's and bought some Miller High Life to toast because apparently it is the "champagne of beers."  I don't drink beer, but I did have some for the toast.

Our moms knew of the date (surprisingly both remembered) and whomever they squealed to knew.  Otherwise I was most stoked about surprising people by putting it on Facebook.  I don't plan to actually tell anyone else, I will let them find out on their own.  Oh, I did tell my kids and my ex-husband who was watching the kids for me.  (The kids have known for awhile.)

And there you have it- I am now the other half... the old ball and chain... an honest woman.  I am sorry to all those who were dying to marry me, but you will have to wait and see if this marriage lasts.  I am kinda hoping it will.  David is a pretty decent fellow and he thinks I'm awesome, which is a pretty good quality in a spouse.

I like to think that my whole wedding was purposefully and wonderfully tacky as opposed to those weddings that are meant to be fancy and are actually trashy because the people are... well, trash.  And I was purposely mocking those people who think that a wedding should cost thousands of dollars out of their parents' pockets... like they don't have better things to do with their money.

I will have a reception sometime in the near future, though, cause everyone knows that is the best part.  But you can be sure it will be wonderfully cheap as well- but maybe not too cheap.

PS An hour after getting married, my car was parked on the street next to my friend's house.  She suggested we park on the less busy side.  Some lady backed into our car and we had to get a police report.  Luckily it's still drivable, but it just added to our exciting day!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Tuesday Musings...

(I teach remedial English at a community college.)

Each semester I get a new group of students, which brings a new batch of personalities and background stories.  It's not like elementary teachers who are occasionally sad to see their students go each year- I'm more than happy for them to go bye-bye because it means I get a break and get to meet new students next semester. 

This semester I have a decent sized group and by the 4th day I had all their names memorized (yet some of them still pronounce my  name wrong.)  I always have an assignment the first day where the students have to give me a short bio about what they think I should know about them.

I am very impressed because this semester and last fall I have had three students in particular who are single moms and they work harder at my class than most of the other students.  They each have more than one.  It impressed me because I hear so many moms say that they can't go back to school or they can't finish school because they have children at home.  One of the most important things I think that a mother can teach her child is that you don't have to give up on life to become a parent.  It's okay to devote a crap ton of time to your children, but you don't have to give up on what makes you happy or your dreams.

I myself finished my bachelor's degree when my daughter was 3 and my son was 1.  Currently I am teaching and taking 3 grad classes so I can finish what little I have left of my MA.  Right now my children are 6,4 and two months.  I'm not gloating or trying to talk myself up, but I'm proof that your kids are not in the way of school.  Just like these three girls I'm referring to are achieving their goals.  I love seeing their drive and hearing them say that they are doing it to give their children better lives.  In a world where it's so easy to live off the government and not work, it's great to see young girls who want more for themselves and don't just give up or become lazy.

Random off topic musing: It bugs me when I make a joke and some of my students don't laugh or smile.  I think I have three students who have yet to crack a smile... it irks me... are they robots or do they think all teachers are nerds?

Veggie Tales: The Penniless Princess- God's Little Girl Available Now!!!

So, if you're unfamiliar with Veggie Tales, you're missing out!  Veggie Tales feature Bob the Tomato and his good pal Larry the Cucumber.  They have a slew of other vegetable friends (and some fruits) that help them tell their stories.  All their stories have a religious overtone, but it is not being shoved down your throat and it helps teach kids great morals!
"In this Veggie-version of the children’s book A Little Princess, by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Larry the Cucumber stars as Captain Crew and helps to teach an important lesson about knowing your own true worth to his young daughter, Sarah, even if only through his spirit.
Sweet Sarah has everything a little girl could want. But when life takes a turn and she goes from riches to rags, will she realize that her true worth lies not in what she has, but what she has in her heart?
 
This was especially cute for me because I used to watch A Little Princess with Shirley Temple all the time when I was little!

My kids love watching Veggie Tales and as a parent, I love that it teaches them many good qualities and traits about life without being disgusting or obnoxious like a lot of the current cartoons are.  
 
Family Time Factor:  Personally, I think it can be enjoyed by all ages, but I'm biased.

MOTR Grade: A

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Another Awful Daycare Experience

I wrote a couple years back about a bad daycare that my kids were going to.

Well, I just had another unfortunate experience yesterday.  They is a daycare on campus at the college I teach at.  Although it is not affiliated with the school (they rent the space), it is still in the school.  It is very pricy, but it was convenient for me to send my son to last year.  I never had a problem with L going- he liked it, he didn't throw a fit going and there seemed to be no problem.  This year, L will be going to preschool elsewhere, but I needed daycare for Baby H.  I only teach one class Mon-Thurs and it lasts an hour, so I figured having H go to the daycare wouldn't be a big deal.  He was only going to have to go on Mondays and Wednesdays because I have family caring for him the other two days.  Of course, it's ridiculous to pay for a full day when he's only going an hour, but the convenience to me was worth it.

As you may or may not know, I used to be a stay at home mom while earning my bachelor degree online.  A didn't go to daycare for the first time until she was 2.5.  L was 6 months and it was so hard because he cried every day when I dropped him off.  It was only a couple days a week, but it was still difficult.  You think that no one can take care of your children as well as you can (of course they can't.)  So, the idea of Baby H going to a daycare at 2 months was very scary to me, but like I said, I didn't think two hours a week would be that bad.

I was wrong.  When I got there to drop H off, there were two women working with 8 babies that looked like they ranged in age from 3 months-16 months.  There were some screaming, a baby in a swing crying, it was chaos.  I know that the state licensed facilities are only allowed to have 4 babies per one adult, so it wasn't as though they were doing something illegal and had "too many" babies there at one time.  I felt bad leaving him and since I was early, I figured that I would feed him a bottle and rock him, hoping he'd fall asleep.  I stayed as long as I could, but he wasn't asleep so I put him in a swing.

Fast forward until I got back.  There was one woman eating in a corner.  The other was spoon feeding one child at the table. H was in the same swing as when I had left, but was crying so much his voice was hoarse.  He was sweaty and he had puke on his clothes.  His bottle hadn't moved from where I left it.  I picked him up, got his stuff and left.  When I got to the car I held him until he calmed down and I cried. 

There is absolutely NO WAY he is going back.  I would rather quit my job than send him back to that place.  Luckily I have found other arrangements that I am much more comfortable with as it is someone I know who has watched L before.  I had David call the daycare and tell them neither of my kids would be returning.  I just can't believe that people can sit back while babies cry and scream!  I care too much about my children to force them into a situation like that.

My poor baby...

Monday, August 13, 2012

iCarly The Complete Fourth Season is available now!!!

One of Nickelodeon's biggest hits has been iCarly. It stars Miranda Cosgrove (School of Rock cutie, Drake & Josh regular) as Carly, a girl who becomes a quasi celebrity in Seattle after broadcasting a webshow starring herself and her friend Sam. Carly's friend Freddie is the technology guy for their show.

Carly lives with her older brother Spencer and he is her legal guardian. This leads to the possibility of much more shenanigans and hijinks than when you're under parental supervision.

Each episode has Carly living out her regular life, without letting her fame get to her head. She is an intelligent and honest girl, which makes her a good character for young children to watch.

Another great element of iCarly is the fact that it is very now and current because Carly's show is on the internet. Kids will appreciate that it's not the same old boring storylines that could be transposed into any given decade.

The crazy situations that Sam, Carly, Freddie and Spencer get into make for a big amount of laughs every episode!


"Carly and the gang are back with all ten episodes from the fourth season in iCarly: The Complete 4th Season! This season, Freddie and Sam are officially together; Carly starts dating a super smart guy; Nora returns in a special two-part episode; the crew gets a VIP visit; and so much more, all while bringing on the LOLs. Guest stars this season include First Lady Michelle Obama and Jim Parsons of CBS’ The Big Bang Theory. In addition, enjoy five episodes from Nickelodeon’s latest hit show, How to Rock – on DVD for the first time!"



iCarly: The Complete 4th Season Episode Synopses:

Disc 1:
iDate Sam & Freddie
Carly steps in to resolve an argument for Sam and Freddie. Soon Freddie and Sam are coming to Carly for help with every single fight. Now that she’s involved, how can Carly remove herself?

iLost My Mind
Carly discovers that Sam has checked herself into a mental hospital, thinking she’s crazy for liking Freddie. Unable to check herself out, how can the gang free Sam before they have to film iCarly?

iCan’t Take It
Mrs. Benson discovers Sam and Freddie’s relationship after Gibby, now the subject of Sam’s abuse, concocts a plan to split them up. Will Carly fight for Sam and Freddie, or help Gibby break them up?

iLove You
Carly tells Sam and Freddie to try each other’s favorite hobbies. Meanwhile, Spencer bumps into his old babysitter and asks her to dinner. After reverting to their old roles, will they stay together?

iQ
Carly tries to impress a new boyfriend by trying to look smarter than she is. Meanwhile, the gang tries to find T-Bo a new place to live after he gets kicked out of the Groovy Smoothie.

iMeet The First Lady
A high-level government agency starts to inquire into the iCarly gang after they hack into a secure network to throw Carly’s dad an online birthday party.

iStill Psycho (Two-Part Episode)
Part 1: After receiving word that Nora Dershlit is going to be released from jail, the iCarly kids see what they can do to keep their old captor behind bars. Meanwhile, Mrs. Benson discovers the real T-Bo.
Part 2: The iCarly gang has to find a way to escape from Nora and her crazy parents. When Freddie figures out how to send a message to his mom, will Mrs. Benson get there in time?

Disc 2:
iToe Fat Cakes
The gang, minus Carly, takes Sam to the Canadian Fat Cake factory, only to find Sam can't get back into America. Meanwhile, Carly has trouble in the tub while getting ready for a date.

iBalls
After being snubbed in an interview about iCarly, Freddie tries to show his creative side by webcasting iCarly in 3D. Spencer hires an assistant he can't afford to pay.

iBloop 2: Electric Bloopaloo
Christopher Cane, the actor who plays Rex on Victorious, returns to host an in-depth interview with the stars of iCarly and to show their hilarious bloopers/outtakes.


Family Time Factor: This is something that anyone from 4-104 could get into.  The writing is witty, but there are many things that younger kids will find funny too.  Although I think some of the themes such as boyfriend/girlfriend/kissing is not something I want my younger kids watching, it's a pretty family-friendly show!

MOTR Grade: B+

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Dora the Explorer: Dora's Fantastic Gymnastics Adventure is Available Now!!!

My kids literally have like 10 Dora DVDs. They used to have more, but I thought it was getting a little excessive. My kids are Dora fiends. Most kids I know are Dora fiends. There is just something about Dora that makes her appeal to every child. As a parent, I love her upbeat attitude, and the fact that she teaches kids everything from Spanish to counting to colors to shapes. It helps them use their memory and critical thinking. My son is 2 and I will hear Dora ask a question and he answers her. It's mind boggling and I love it!

Dora is a little girl who likes to go exploring. She uses a map to tell her where to go, has a pet Monkey friend named Boots who goes along with her and then there's Swiper the Fox, who likes to steal things and hide them from Dora.

 Dora the Explorer: Dora’s Fantastic Gymnastics Adventure Episode Synopses:

Dora’s Fantastic Gymnastics Adventure
Dora and Boots are practicing for the Fantastic Gymnastics Show when Dora gets a special delivery – a beautiful rainbow ribbon. This means Dora gets to start the Big Gymnastics Show with her ribbon dance! But Swiper comes in and steals the ribbon soDora and Boots set out on an adventure to get the ribbon back in time for the show.

A Ribbon for Pinto
Pinto is really excited about the Big Horse Show and he’d like to win his very first blue prize ribbon. Dora, Boots, and Pinto are taking a train to the show, but the train breaks down and they worry they won’t be able to make it!

Swiper’s Favorite Things
Swiper is packing all of his favorite things for a sleepover at his Grandma’s House -- his pajama trunk, his favorite puppy book, and his very special funny bunny. Just as he is about to leave, a big wind gust comes in and blows everything away! Dora and Swiper journey to Crocodile Lake, through the Jumbled Trees, and race to Strawberry Hill to get Swiper’s favorite things back.



Family Time Factor:  As an adult, I find it tolerable to listen to while I'm cleaning or Facebooking or what not, but I'd never sit an watch it.  In terms of kids, I'd say 2-6.

MOTR Grade: A-