Monday, June 30, 2008 1 comment
Do you ever have those moments when someone says something and you are instantly taken back to an exact moment in the past. This weekend it happened to me. I was taken back TO 6th grade, Mrs. Gentry's social studies class. Mrs. Gentry was crazy~not haha funny crazy~but insane asylum crazy. Instead of being institutionalized she was given dozens of 6th graders!! She would order posters from the book fair~none of them had anything to do with social studies but she bought several at a time. This particular poster was of a brain. It was a detailed map of every part of the brain, and she was so thrilled to hang it up for us to see. One of the boys, probably Shannon Day, said,"Mrs. Gentry, where did you get your brain?" Mrs. Gentry would say, time and time again, "I ordered it at the book fair." He asked her several times every day and she always had the same reply. We laughed hysterically each and every time. She never got the joke.

I was taken FROM Granny's yard on Saturday. Angel was disturbed with a broken statue sitting on Grannys patio. Angel said,"Hey Granny, what happened to your boy's head?" She said,"I don't know." He looked confused and said,"NO, NO Granny, this boys head." I guess he thought he thought it was one of Granny's "boys" heads. It worried him to no end trying to fix the boys head. Finally Big Daddy loaded the boy in the car and vowed to fix his poor little head.


Friday, June 27, 2008 1 comment
What could I possibly add other than~these were taken at Barren River Lake on 9/9/06. This is Angel, of course, dancing to some long forgotten song. He can probably still wear those swimming trunks.


Thursday, June 26, 2008 No comments
These three sweet looking children, my own, will eventually drive me to drink. It may not be today or tomorrow but eventually, I will be a lush solely because of them. Some days I long for them to grow up and be responsible and other days I wish them to stay little so I can control their lives. I have been a mother for nearly 12 years now and they continue to amaze me daily. I was having chest pains a few weeks ago and Little Girl and Angel were in the car with me. I told her I didn't feel well and she said,"Can you drop me off first, in case you have a heart attack?" SWEET! Then she added,"You HAVE lived a long life, Mom" Yeah, 39 LONG years. There is no doubt that the sun rises and sets on the heads of these 3 kids. The wind blows because they want it to and every opportunity is available just because they desire it. We are caught in the middle of "you are special just for being you" and "maybe that is not your strong suit" kind of world. I mean do you tell them they need to watch their weight or that baseball may NOT be their best sport or that they can be anything they want to be when the world doesn't really work that way. So far they have good realistic goals about future careers, but at what point do you discourage them from getting a degree in Renaissance Art History in favor of something more practical? When do you stifle their dreams because they are not feasible? The have been told they are wonderful and loved and now they are entitled to the world at their doorstep. We parents walk a fine line in raising good well adjusted children. The moral of the story is......if you see me and I look like I have had a few too many drinks, I needed every one of them.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008 1 comment

We love baseball. Let's just start it. Last night, not so much. Future Troopers team lost 12-4 or so, I lost interest about the 2nd inning and was looking for the car. At one point, Big Daddy asked me to find Dr. P and see if she could possibly do a root canal while we waited for the game to end. A root canal seemed more pleasurable at the time. One bright note: my friend KD and her daughter Kourt came to help us endure baseball torture. She and Little Girl hit it off.

Apparently, we have subjected little girl to a terrible life by giving her 2 brothers. She looked at Kourt and said,"How many brothers do YOU have?" Kourt said,"4" Little Girl said,"Boy, you've got it rough." Kourt said,"Yeah, I will give you Tyler." SISTER BONDING TAKING PLACE RIGHT BEFORE OUR EYES.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008 2 comments
My friend, Skippy, has a saying: Every time, same. It not only means that some things never change but we probably would be shocked if they did. Welcome to the my world at the baseball park. Here is how the scenario plays out EVERY TIME: SAME! Angel: Hey Mom, Mom, Mom, hey Mom, Mom, Mom, Mom, I am talking to you.
Me: Yes, I hear you saying my name over and over and over.

Angel: Can I go over to the consheshon (concession) stand and get a snack?
Me: You just had supper and I brought you some cereal.

Angel: I just want to go to the consheshon stand and get another snack. I don't like cereal.
Mom: You will have to wait.

Angel: Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaase! Is it up to you or Dad?
Me: You can ask Dad if you want to.
Angel: Dad, Dad, Dad, I am talking to you!
Big Daddy: I hear you, what do you want?
Angel: I JUST want to go to the consheshon stand for a snack.
Big Daddy: Not right now, later, if you are a good boy.

Angel: But I am so hungary! Mom, I am so hungary!
Me: Our people are from England and Scotland, not from Hungary!
Angel falls on the ground and cries, not tears, just the sounds that go with tears.
Any night of the week no matter who is in attendance.


Monday, June 23, 2008 2 comments
Saturday was Little Girls 9th birthday! We had her party at the farm this year. Years past, we have had parties in town or at Nana's. She was incredibly excited to have people come just for her. She wanted a Hawaiian theme so we gathered all of our Polynesian stuff from years past and off we went. Her cake was beautiful~Wal-Mart in Morehead did a fabulous job. Boy, cakes have come a long way since I was 9 (a long time, I know) The brownish portion is higher than the rest of the cake. Kind of a little beach "above" the ocean! Little girl was heard saying,"Mom ALWAYS gets me balloons for my birthday." I hadn't, so someone strung a line of ballooms over the tables! Good work~I was chauffering and missed it all! Miss M, current best friend, as of Saturday! Best friends change with the wind when you are 9 though. She got stung by a bee but was able to continue her partying without much interruption.
There were go-cart rides. My sweet brother and his crafty nurse wife went for a short ride EVEN after I reminded them that should something happen to them me and Big Daddy would be raising that sweet baby.

Baby O wore his green and white Hawaiian shirt and was the belle of the ball. He was passed around and admired by all. Sidenote: One year ago, we were taking pictures for their adoption profile and now here he is!

The four girls and Big Daddy on the four wheeler. You can't hear Mrs. Butterworth (aka Nana) in the background saying ,"Doesn't look very safe to me, doesn't look very safe to me."

All in all there was fun, good food, cake and ice cream and slushies. All 3 girls wanted to spend the night but, that was too much for me for one day. We have all made plans to get together again.
I served these and they went over well. They can be made hours ahead of the event.
Tortilla Roll Ups
2 packages of cream cheese
1 cup (or so) of salsa
3 or 4 chopped green onions
1 small can of black olives chopped
Mix first 4 ingredients until well blended:doesn't have to be smooth
spread 2 or 3 spoonfuls on tortilla
wrap tortilla and chill until cool
cut to desired length
serve with salsa
I am not much of a cook but I will guarantee these are quick and easy and taste good, too.


Friday, June 20, 2008 2 comments
STEP 1: Find a old GREEN water hose in the garage. Must be green and have leaky spots in it~I don't know why, it just does. (If you need one, let me know). Tie between two trees out on the farm.
STEP 2: Find a old gray blanket that you have been saving "just in case you need it" and throw the blanket over the water hose. Looks pretty good!
STEP 3: Take advantage of the littliest boy's love of the game and make him carry an old bucket of baseballs to the "field". If you need an old bucket, let me know, we have several.

Step 4: Batter up! The oldest, The Future Trooper, goes first as the Angel does the fielding and Big Daddy pitches. When the Angel complains loudly, you switch and let him hit and the oldest does the fielding (usually in the go-cart.)
NOTE: It helps if you are a pack rat and have the materials at hand; if not, you may want to pay $5 and hit at the batting cages in town. Happy Baseball!!


Thursday, June 19, 2008 2 comments

Okay, we are having issues at our house. Big Daddy travels all over the world and buys me presents~he doesn't travel JUST to buy me presents, of course, just buys them in the course of his travels. Now that is cleared up...... I have thousands of $ of southwestern jewelry from Arizona from the bi-annual "recertification" trip: 3 hand carved bowls from El Salvador: 2 elephant motif bracelets from Afghanistan: 2 hand carved very intricate carvings from Korea: hand woven shawls from Egypt, all acquired over the years courtesy of military "vacations". The problem is....he thinks (incorrectly) that if he gives me more than one gift at a time he is not given proper credit. In past years, he has hidden the "excess" gifts in the storage building or in the trunk of his car. The CURRENT ISSUE at hand are the roosters above. I love these hand carved roosters more than anything he buys me. He gets them at the Big Sandy Airport in Prestonsburg, KY. If you don't know where it is look it up~ain't nothing there except Big Sandy Airport and the attached restaurant. Over the last 15 years I have been given about 10 of these roosters, each with a different theme. I love the mountains of Eastern Ky and the first one has the sun setting over the mountains on one side and the other side has the moon over the mountains~still my favorite. BACK TO THE POINT: Last week, Big Daddy bought me 3 of the roosters and he thinks he should still get 3 times the appreciation and thanks. So here goes: Big Daddy, the roosters you have bought for me are on a short list of my prized possessions, along with my engagement ring and the lamps my grandmother gave me. I appreciate the roosters 3 fold and thank you times 3 for thinking of me. That good enough? Y'all help me out and tell Big Daddy how much I love the roosters!


Wednesday, June 18, 2008 1 comment
Typical picture of Toby.

This is Toby Keith Carlisle~until a few days ago, I thought he must be in the witnesss protection program. You are witnessing the ONLY good picture in existence. Every picture I have taken for 5 years has been a disaster. He turns his head at the last minute or chases an imaginery squirrel or hides in the grass. He was certainly hiding from someone! This day I caught him off guard. He was watching the boys hit baseballs and didn't realize the camera was on him.. Here is his story....

A few years ago we were spending a Derby Day at the farm. The Future Trooper heard what he thought was a puppy whimpering. I said it was surely a bird or another country animal making weird noises. Anyway, I am a sucker for a puppy, so we set out looking for the origin of the sound. Eventually, we came upon a puppy and a momma dog. The momma was scared and ran away, but the puppy stayed (okay, we carried him home.) No one ever came to claim him so he became ours. We named him Toby Keith for obvious reasons and he has been nearly the perfect dog. He won't go near the road, he loves the kids and only chases the cats to show off for someone new. Countless people have come to the house and commented on what a cool dog he is.....yes he is! I will probably have this picture made into an 8x10 and maybe some wallets, it will be the only good one I may ever get.
SIDENOTE: If you are my grandmother you may continue to read, otherwise check back tomorrow: Mema, you are my favorite person in the world and I am planning a whole week of posts about you and the years we have had together. Maybe the last week of July to celebrate your birthday! Just because I have mentioned Granddaddy doesn't mean I like him better!


Tuesday, June 17, 2008 1 comment
I would walk through hell in a gasoline suit to play baseball ~Pete Rose

(and Will Carlisle)

I saw this quote from Pete Rose and it reminded me so much of my Angel. Since he could walk he has wanted to play baseball. At 2 years old he would walk through the house wearing his brothers keets (cleats). His first phrase was "I play baseball". My uncle Mark would tell him to "concentrate" and he thought he was.....he has both a right-hander AND a left-hander glove since he can't make up his mind. Some days he pitches right and some days, left. This year we were all relieved that he was able to play T-ball: 4 years old at last! He has throughly enjoyed playing with the Orioles. He hit the coach with a hard hit down the middle a few games ago and now he strives to do it again. He runs hard to every base and when he arrives he relives the hit to whoever is standing near. Slides into home plate, of course! When Big Daddy and I slack off he will look over at us and say,"Yell for me." and we do..... yesterday his coach said he was so impressed with his hitting ability especially considering his size. I guess hitting those 150 balls over the weekend really helped.

What Do You See?

Monday, June 16, 2008 1 comment

What do you see when you look at this picture?
1. A little girl tired of her little brother?
2. Creative choice of clothing by the Angel?
3. Hillybilly Mama's flower "bed"?
4. Kids enjoying a day at the farm?
5. The hope of sunflowers covering the fence row?

You know what I see? POISON IVY! Today is the 8th day I have suffered with poison ivy. Big Daddy swears he stood behind me and said,"There's poison ivy on the fence row." Maybe he did and I tuned him out or maybe he just always likes to be right! Either way, he and the dogs have not had an uninterrupted nights sleep for 8 days now! I do well as long as I wash the areas with the $22 generic WASH from Walgreens or apply the Benadryl gel LIBERALLY, but I scratch most of the night anyway. I have tried to call my nurse sister-in-law for a handy dandy tip on drying it up overnight, but she has been out of the country! Actually, she is just in Eastern KY with no cell phone reception! Help me friends~send me a sure fire solution to poison ivy~I am starting to get a little cranky~

A Marginally Happy Fathers Day!

Saturday, June 14, 2008 No comments
If it will disappoint you that I have not lived a chosen life, skip my post today. Check back on Monday! Okay, Fathers "original" father died a few years ago. I didn't go to the funeral. I know now I should have...not for me, but for my brother. For that I am sorry! I don't remember ever really "knowing" my Dad or yearning to spend time with him. He had demons, we all do, I know now. His were just very apparent. Because of my Dad, there a few things I know for sure~1. He was proud of us. He told me a million times that he was rich because of his children not the amount of money he had.
2. Education is vital. As a little girl, he would lick his finger and straighten out my eyebrows and say,"Your girlfriends and boyfriends will come and go but your education will be with you every minute of your life."
3. Some people are able to fight their demons and others are not. Dad was a drinker as long as I can remember and therefore, I am not. Never have been. I don't want to give that demon a chance.
I am also grateful that we were a part of his family. I have 9 or 10 aunts and uncles and 25 (or so) 1st cousins on Dad's side. I am glad he would rather leave us to play with our cousins than force us to tag along with him. My 4 closest cousins and I formed a wonderful bond that a lot of people don't experience. We learned to get along well and embrace our differences. (I am compiling a list of "farm" memories and will pull them out later.)
Thanks Dad, for giving me a brother and sister and marrying a nice lady after you and Mom divorced (thanks for that, too) and giving me a half-sister! I appreciate what you tried to do for us.

On Fathers Day, I also salute my granddaddy. His relationship with my mother has shown me that it is a wonderful thing for a girl to love her daddy. I have numerous wonderful memories of spending summers in Virginia with my grandparents. Granddaddy walked in the door just in time to sit at the table as The Andy Griffith Show came on the TV. (He and I "talk Andy" to this day.) His dedication to my grandmother such a wonderful testimate to his faith. If she gets up in the middle of the night, he gets up to check on her. I could write a book about my wonderful granddaddy (I may do that).
Big Daddy and Poppy have birthday's coming up, so they will get their very posts the first week of July. You won't need tissues for those!


Friday, June 13, 2008 2 comments
One of my favorite sayings of late is "Just when you think you are raising a genius they say(do) something stupid." I am missing my Little Girl this week as she is vacationing at Nana's (Mrs. Butterworth as Little Girl wants me to call her~her name is not Butterworth but she makes good pancakes.) Anyway, the Future Trooper and I were reminiscing some of her finer moments.....
1. A while back, Mrs. Butterworth took Little Girl to Long John Silvers for lunch. Mrs. B said,"What do you want to eat?" LG said (mortified),"Is fish really FISH?" Mrs. B said,"Yes, it used to be swimming somewhere." LG said,"I CANNOT eat anything that was ever alive, I will have the chicken." Cracks me up just to type it! SKippy thought it was good enough to cover my writers block today.
2. Last night, LG and Mrs. B were driving the golf cart around. Mrs. B pulled into the parking lot and LG said,"You want me to do the masculine role and park the cart?" Mrs. B said she was going to make a list of funny stuff she says this week, check back next week for updates!


Thursday, June 12, 2008 No comments

A while back, our Little Girl was playing with some friends and she suddently runs to me and says,"Angel needs to go to the potty." Angel wasn't potty trained until he was nearly 4 and had been to the DR. for a check up. Costs us $28 to potty train him but, that is for another post. Anyway, I asked him and he said,"No, Thank you." A moment or two later, Little Girl, motified by now, says,"BUT HE IS CLUTCHING!" Sure enough he was clutching as most boys do. He was giving the appearance that he was in desperate need of needing to use the bathroom but was trying to keep the hose from busting! Little Girl was about to die that her brother was acting this way in front of her friends. All the friends have brothers, so they didn't bat an eye. I took him by the hand and led him to the bathroom. He certainly needed to go but was eager to get back out to play with the girls. There was no more clutching! Welcome to our world!

It Occurred to Me!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008 No comments

It occurred to me a few weeks ago, and I was reminded last night that we may (possibly) be living the American dream. We have enough food, okay, way too much food: a nice house where the kids all have their own room: more cars than we can drive at a time: I could go on and on. This rant started a few weeks ago when our family was sitting at the ballpark, as we do most evenings. (See Future Trooper, JAMO, the Homerun Hitter, above)It was a beautiful spring night and everyone was happy AT THE SAME TIME. Little Girl said,"We live a really good life." I was reminded last night (once again at the ballpark) as I was sitting amongst my friends watching The Future Trooper play baseball. Everyone was laughing and sharing peanuts and there was even a little teasing going on..... today I am going to try (really hard) to be thankful for the following things:

1. Big Daddy, been married almost 15 years, same father to all of my kids!

2. Kids that are healthy. We have had a few scares in the past but all is well today.

3. Nice home, mortgage free.

4. Dependable (fuel efficient) car to drive to work.

5. Friends to struggle though the ballgames with....16 to 2 last night (at least the last time I looked)

6. A family loves our children, really loves them.
7. We both are educated with NO student loans!

For these things, today, I am thankful.

The Exception to Most Rules!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008 No comments
My sweet brother is the exception to most male stereotypes. He loves to fish and fix stuff, true enough. BUT, he also is the most thoughtful person I know. We must be very careful mentioning something we are wishing we had, he will buy it! If the kids mention a movie they wish their (terrible) parents would take them to see, he takes them. Last time I called him and asked what he was doing, he replied,"Washing bottles." He takes the baby so his crafty nurse wife can have the day to clean the house! My favorite thing about him is that he is fiercly loyal. He would fight a running saw (Mom's term) to protect any of his family! Here is a small list of the things that make him different:

1. He visits Dad's grave religiously.
2. He embraces all aspects of Daddyhood
3. He took our oldest, The Future Trooper, on his 5th grade trip cause Big Daddy was in Kuwait.
4. He worked hours at a time in our yard while Big Daddy was serving our country. He also put together Angel's new bed!
5. He goes shopping with his wife and holds her clothes and says,"Get it."
5. He is incredibly appreciative and humble.
Any time I hear woman complaining about men I feel inclined to add,"Except Jeremy, of course."
We love you, Jeremy.

Just take a minute, please, to visit Owen's new blog. He was getting bored at home and started blogging while his mom and dad were at work. He seems to be mechanical like his dad and creative like his mom. What a wonderful face to start the day!


Monday, June 9, 2008 No comments

I didn't think biker chicks wore plaid shoes, BUT, apparently they do. At least this one does. Little Girl loves to ride with Big Daddy on his Harley. They usually come home with chocolate ice cream on their breath. I think she likes to ride because her brother,the Future Trooper, likes to ride! She also likes the drama of carrying her helmet around and her hair flowing underneath. She usually tries to find a Harley Davidson T-shirt to complete the ensemble, but this day she and her dad were trying to get away while the (poor little) Angel was trapped in the bathtub.

On This Day~Somebody get me a tissue!!

Friday, June 6, 2008 No comments
On this day 64 years ago, the allied forces stormed the beaches in Normandy, France. My granddaddy was there~okay~ he wasn't THERE, he was on his way there. He would arrive on the 3rd or 4th day. Omaha Beach, as it was known, was the destination of many young soldiers. Granddaddy enlisted in the Army and must have know he would be sent overseas where he would see many of his comrades die. He was a young soldier from Johnson County, Ky, and was about to be involved in history.

I don't know the man he was then, but I know the man he is today, and think that many of these experiences have shaped his character. Granddaddy had polio as a child and had a broken arm that was never properly fixed, neither of which hindered his job as a tow truck driver in France and Belgium during WWII. He is the strongest and most dependable man I know. He is incredibly kind and faithful. His faith seems unwavering and I can only pray to be half the role model he has been to 5 children, grandchildren and now, great grandchildren. He lives his life with Christ as his model and it is apparent to all of us.

We have heard a few of the stories of Omaha Beach but I have no doubt there are stories that are clear to him but, we will never know. I am reminded of his sacrifice when I see a new American flag flying or hear the phrase "God Bless America." Men like him have paved the way for the lives we live and the freedoms we have. Being a military wife myself, I am especially appreciative of the sacrifices that were given on this day in 1944. There are fewer WWII vererans living every day. If you know one (or more) tell them you appreciate their sacrifice.


Thursday, June 5, 2008 No comments
This is the first year of t-ball for our Angel. He has loved baseball since he could walk and he watched his brother play. This year was his turn. With the help of the league asst. commissioner, we got a great coach Darrell. I don't know what he does for a living but he is very patient and is trying to teach the kids about the rules of baseball. He even reminds them to say "Please" and "Thank you" for their snacks. Angel is the littliest kid on the team and his shirt hangs to his knees. The team logo is almost tucked into his XS pants.

Every player gets to bat and run the bases. The first couple of practices involve teaching the kids to run to 1st base and not 3rd base. Our Angel's favorite part is when the players and coaches put their hands together and yell (at the top of their lungs) 1-2-3 ORIOLES!

Classic Little Girl

Wednesday, June 4, 2008 No comments

Yesterday afternoon, Little Girl and I stopped by my friend Skippy's house to return her camera. Upon seeing the new "professional do", Skippy said,"What are you going to do when the boys starting hitting on you?" Little Girl never missed a beat and said,"I'll just hit them back." Classic!
She has always had a way with words and the ability to use them in a humorous way. She can cut you down with just a short phrase and never bat an eye. For the last (almost) 9 years there has been a family grapevine of Little Girl phrases. I tell Nana, she tells Mema and so on and so on.....Mema says we should write them down but I think we would have to plant a forest to replace the trees we needed for paper. I love that girl and am sad she is growing up so fast.

A real professional haircut for Little Girl!!

Monday, June 2, 2008 3 comments

Little Girl has been so excited about donating her beautiful red hair to the Locks of Love Organization. She has been insistent that I take her THIS WEEK to have it "professionally" done. I usually trim the ends of her hair, therefore, having a real hairdresser is very exciting to her. We went to Wal-Mart on Sunday but there was a 45 minute wait (there were NO customers in the salon, by the way). She was disappointed but resigned to the fact that she could go to work with me on Tuesday and get it done at Great Clips in the evening. She was so brave.

The stylist asked her one time if she was ready and then clipped off the pony tails. Little Girl was a little shocked how short it was but was thrilled with the "bobbed" cut. I told her she had a "Dorothy Hamill" haircut. (showing my age, I know). Course she has never heard of Dorothy Hamill!
All the way home she tossed her hair and said,"I love it. "
SIDE NOTE: Being the terrible mother that I am, I left my camera at home~my friend Skippy had a loaner ready for me to use. Thanks to Skippy for the pics.

Big Daddy is out of town, there will be an uproar when he gets home. Stay tuned for Part II of the "Professional Haircut

Keys to the Pearly Gates?

I don't believe that doing good deeds will guarantee me a place in heaven but I am convinced keeping Tanner MUST get me extra points with someone up there. Who is the saint of animals? I don't know, but maybe he is keeping track of my puppy points.
A family friend found him on the side of a busy road and called me (the sucker) to see if I would take him. I already had one chihuahua so I agreed. The kids and I (Big Daddy was "out of the country") labored over a name then just gave up and, considering that he was tanner than Cricket, just went with Tanner. We took him to the vet who told us he was either neutered or "probably" couldn't have puppies. We eventually had four puppies, but that is for another blog.....I posted an ad in the local paper for a lost dog. A lady called and said she was certain that he was her mother-in-law's dog and she would like to come get him. I agreed and told her to come after 3 so the kids would be out of school and could say goodbye. WELL, that was October 2006! She never showed and I was too stubborn to call her back.
Anyway, he and I bonded right away. He loves me, no doubt about it. Every minute of every day, he loves me! He isn't the best at pottying outside or not always so pleasant company but I have yet to beat his faithfulness. The kids get tired of getting growled out and Big Daddy gets tired of yellow spots on the bath mat. But me? I love him, too and am hoping it will someday pay off!