Things I've learned on the way to 40:


Our actions, beliefs and values truly shape who our children become; being a good parent is crucial.

When you have a baby at twenty-something, they are a baby for just a little while.

When you have a baby at thirty-something, they are a baby for only the blink of an eye.


Extra weight is much harder to lose now than a decade or so ago.

Having a plan along with systems & strategies for everyday things can really save you (time, money, and sanity).

Stressing over things we cannot control is truly wasted energy and wasted happiness. However, taking action over the things we can control is well worth it.


Being free of oppression (of any kind) truly makes one’s spirit soar- the freedom to live and be who you are is a blessing.


Enjoying life and learning to find the joy in life is more important than I ever realized in my younger years.

Realizing how fast time goes by the older you are makes you appreciate life that much more.

Life is too short for negative crap; whether it’s relationships, activities, or things.

Notes from Driver's Ed

The teenager has been taking Driver's Ed this summer and recently he was assigned to make a car out of a cardboard box. He had a great time doing this; a couple of Pampers boxes and a can of spray paint later he had quite a vehicle. Of course he then refused to take the bus to school with this thing because that would just be too embarrassing. So as we pulled up to school there was a line a mile long of moms and their kids with cardboard cars. As I saw what the other kids made I realized my son had made more of a mini-van - the thing looked like a tank compared to the little “sports cars” the rest of the kids made. Of course my mommy-mind goes directly to thinking; “Oh good--it’s safer that way!”

So now that he’s learning all the rules of the road he’s become quite a backseat driver. Whenever we go anywhere I hear:

“Mom, you know that fines are doubled in construction zones!”

“I wouldn’t follow that truck if I were you- his load is unsecured.”

“Watch out for that old lady crossing the street!”

Yeah, yeah. Ok whatever. Just get a good grade kid and learn to drive well...Mom needs a chauffeur.

Next up in the ongoing weight loss battle...

I think what the experts say about weight loss and fitness is true: apparently you have to eat less and move more. Who’d have thought? So I guess this is why my whole lounge-on-the-sofa-eating-bon-bons-while-watching-TV plan hasn’t worked! As I’ve previously mentioned I follow the Weight Watcher’s plan all of the time, most of the time, when things get out of control and I have to reel it back in. And I do exercise every day for ninety minutes, everyday for thirty minutes, every other day for as long as baby will eat breakfast in his highchair while watching a DVD before whining he wants out. This translates into “not enough exercise to burn the calories I eat”. And frankly, I’m just not willing to eat any less than I already am [when following my eating plan]. I like my food. There are however too many times I veer off my WW eating plan. I get very angry with myself for "falling off the wagon" because I know that I need to stick to it and when I do I am able to lose weight and maintain it. I've done it before but sadly, Mother Nature's cruel joke seems to be that women past early thirties have more difficulty taking off the pounds. Currently, I am back on track with the eating plan [as of a week ago] and sticking to it faithfully. However, that's not enough. Now I need to add in more exercise than I have been getting. The other day a friend and I were talking about exercise and she suggested running. My response was; “You mean on purpose?!” Other than in my teenage years when forced to for PE [and let’s be honest, that was awhile ago] I have never run—on purpose—for exercise. Apparently this is something people do. (Again, who’d have thought?) After discussing the advantages, the main one being getting your exercise in a shorter period of time, I decided I’m actually going to give it a try. While I fear this won’t be pretty I’m still going to take a stab at it. Honestly, I have visions of resembling Phoebe on Friends when she went jogging with Rachel.

In preparation for this new adventure I went out this weekend in search of some basic running attire. I found shoes I like and naturally they didn’t have my size so they had to be ordered. Grrr. (Lest I use that as an excuse to delay starting I decided to use a pair of shoes I have that will work in the meantime.) I also went to try on clothes and was looking for some kind of bottoms that would be comfortable to run in. Yeah, trying on bottoms-that was fun - about one notch up from trying on swimsuits. Then I got brave and tried on actual “running shorts” (you know, the short, side vented, Richard Simmons kinda things) knowing full well there was no way on earth I’d buy them let alone appear in them in public. So, while standing there in the dressing room I had an idea. I decided it might serve as further motivation to photograph myself in the shorts, then if this whole running thing actually “works” [and my legs end up looking like something that could be seen in public] I could have a handy before and after photo set. So I pulled out my camera and shot a couple photos. You won’t find them here, naturally, but if things improve I’m not opposed to showing them as part of a B & A deal one day. Anyway, I found of a pair of running capri pants that were comfortable and didn't look completely horrible. I already have a heart rate monitor so I can be sure I am getting enough cardio without pushing the line of passing out. I know I need to begin by taking it slow, which means starting out at maybe a half mile, a quarter mile, around the block, to the mail box and maybe back. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Gas Prices + Going Green = a New Lunchbox

It would be a gross understatement to say “gas prices are high”. Um, yeah. Due to the fact that the hubby drives a way-too-many-cylinders-gas-guzzler-behemoth-of-a-bucket-of-bolts-jalopy-that-won’t pass-smog he has decided to do something drastic go green. So he now rides his bike. To work. Every day. He decided this a week ago. Prior to the start of Hubby Bikes to Work we were out shopping when he spotted a lunch box. As he’s checking it out he notices that it has a handle with a clasp so it can attach to something and he says to me; “Hey, this can clip to my bike for when I ride to work!” I let out a little giggle because I didn’t think he was actually serious. Not that I don’t think it’s a good idea or see the wisdom in it, on the contrary, I think it’s a great idea. I just couldn’t see him doing it. So this past Monday morning he rolls up a pants leg (as yet he hasn’t located one of the hold your pants leg thingy’s ) clips his little lunch box to his bike, dons his helmet complete with the rear view mirror attachment [that he uses when biking with baby in the trailer] and off he goes down the street to work! It was a proud-but-still-can’t-believe-my-eyes moment as I watched from the window. Of course, my “Lucy” tendencies appeared when later in the day I went to the garage and for just a moment wondered why my husband’s car was still there. (Yeah, I know.) So hey, we’re saving money along with the environment, hubby is getting some additional exercise and I have a little story for the blog. It’s a win-win.

I’m going to have to blog about this…

That’s what I told the hubby about last night’s “event.” So the hubby and I we were busy doing some house clean-up projects, getting some things organized and sorted out. Hubby’s list included things like taking out all the extra crap I’d lined up in the hall and set by the back door and putting it in the garden shed or garage for storage. While he was working on this I was busy vacuuming followed by trying out my new steam mop (so far I have to say I’m pretty impressed with it! No chemicals needed, no refill pads to buy and it seems to work pretty well! Anyway, I’m not getting paid to do product reviews so back to my story.) The steam mop, as the name would suggest, gives off lots of steam and in doing so it makes a fairly loud steam-y sound. Well, somewhere between vacuuming and mopping I apparently didn’t hear the knocking at the back door. The door to the garage. Where hubby was busy putting stuff away. So, when I finally heard the knocking I then realized somehow hubby had locked himself out. Of course he naturally assumed his wife had locked him out. Like I’d do that very often! And he did have his cell phone with him so he totally could have called!

Oh No She Didn’t! Part 2

Okay, you all knew (or at least were hoping) it was coming. I pretty much had to do a follow up to my previous post: Oh No She Didn’t! Thanks for all your comments, compliments, links and e-mails. Because I have received so many questions about the “Special Reader” [including several people actually wondering if it was them!] I had to set the record straight. No, it’s not you. Or you. Nope, not you either. What’s interesting is that my original post never actually mentioned the term “blog stalker”, but what I wrote gave you all that basic idea (as shown in the comments). In fact, I wasn’t even certain of the actual definition of a blog stalker so I looked it up:

From the Urban Dictionary:
v. to secretly read someone's blog with the express purpose of learning more about them without their knowledge; to stalk via blog
I'm going to blog-stalk my friend's new boyfriend and find out what he's really like.I'm blog-stalking that cute girl in poli sci.My blog-stalker finally posted a comment; she should've known I was tracking her through my web stats.

All righty then, blog stalker is an accurate description! I think many readers might have gotten the idea that Special Reader was just an anonymous person that I happened to notice was frequently reading my blog (there were only a few subtle clues to suggest it was a specific person I knew). Well, the Special Reader is definitely not anonymous—nope, I know my Special Reader in real life. The reason why it was so amusing to me to have Special Reader reading my blog is because of who she is. So, since so many of you have been on pins and needles wondering about this I will clue you in. In fact knowing who it is it actually makes the whole post even more entertaining. No, really, it does! So you see how...what? Oh, I still haven’t told you?! So sorry about that, silly me! Okay, here ya go--it’s the current wife of my wasband. Yep! See, I told ya, even funnier now, huh? That should clarify things for those of you questioning “Could she possible mean me?” And to Annette in BC, (aka not Special Reader) thanks for commenting, you crazy blog stalker you, and if I’m ever up your way I would love to meet over chocolate. Oh, and in case any of you were wondering, Special Reader is still reading! (Isn’t that special?) Hi Special Reader!

Read the followup: An extra "special" Anniversary

Oh No She Didn’t!

Well hello there, Special Reader! I’m thrilled to have you. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Again. And again. And again. I love all my readers, but now I am talking just to you, Special Reader. That’s right – you! I must say I am flattered. I mean, I know my blog is witty, humorous, insightful and just darn entertaining, but wow, Special Reader, you must really love me. Of course, I know you have extra time on your hands since you’re off work now, so there’s that—oh but wait, you checked SAHM: Surviving Assorted Home Mayhem even while at work! What a super special reader you are.

I am a little surprised though. When you first began reading my blog I thought sure you’d take the opportunity to leave a scathing comment, especially considering this blog even allows anonymous comments. And even more so since the post a few down has a little something to do with you. Yeah, you know the one. Frankly, you could have knocked me over with a feather when I didn’t see a comment come in from you. But perhaps in reading my blog you’ve somehow been left speechless? OR have you recently begun to follow the old adage “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Nah!!!! Now, I’m just being silly!

So, does your husband know you’re reading this? I’d assume you’d want to share it with him but then again as often as you hop on to check out what I might have said you could be keeping it to yourself. Though at some point I’d think he might say: “get off the computer and come to bed!” So, did you call all your family members as soon as you found this blog to tell them about your discovery or did you quietly leave them out of your new find since you may not want them reading the things I might say? Well, no matter. This blog is for everyone, even you, Special Reader. Who knows, you might just discover in reading my writing what a delightful person I am and in no time we could be chatting over a cup of coffee, er, hot chocolate at Starbuck’s! Yeah, like that would happen. But stranger things have happened. You know, like you reading my blog. A lot. But hey, don’t feel like you have to stop now! No, not at all, you just keep right on reading. I won’t tell. It’ll be our little secret.

Read the followup: Oh No She Didn't! Part 2

Wordless Wednesday

Told to stop breastfeeding at Arizona Pizza | WINK News - Southwest Florida | YouNewsTV

Told to stop breastfeeding at Arizona Pz WINK News - Southwest Florida YouNewsTV
Updated story: Fox 4 Troubleshooter- Breastfeeding Battle
Edited 6-12-08: So now apparently more info is surfacing and it sounds as though the original story was not entirely accurate. It is unfortunate that any mom would make this up/embellish her story if that is in fact the case since it makes it that much more difficult for women everywhere that this does in fact happen to. Since this is a problem (regardless of this particular incident) my feelings and statements on the issue in general remain and I will keep up my original post as seen below.
This is becoming all too common. Yet another ignorant person attempting to prevent a woman from doing the most natural thing in the world due to their own silly hang-ups. This is why laws exist to protect a woman's right to nurse her child, people! And frankly, if we are going to talk about public actions/behaviors that offend people, let's get real and list a few:
1. Smoking. Doesn't even need an explanation.
2. Not bathing on a regular basis--to the point of creating a little cloud wherever you go that I have to walk through. Thanks for sharing.
3.Yakking on your cell phone- particularly while in the midst of other folks engaged in activities appropriate to the venue; like trying to have a meal in a restaurant. The hubby and I rarely get to enjoy a dinner out together--we don't want to hear about your latest business deal and neither does your date by the way- get off the phone.
4.Using pants incorrectly - their purpose is to cover your butt - pull them up!
When I nursed my last baby I did not hesitate to do so whenever and wherever regardless of whether he'd tolerate a cover over him. I did it in restaurants, while out shopping, and even in my Weight Watcher's meeting including the time we had a male leader. Thankfully I never had anyone say anything derogatory toward me regarding my shocking behavior. Of course if they had I would have simply stated: "If my nursing in public offends you please feel free to put a blanket over your head."

Note the Uncanny Resemblance

balloon baby

Critter Capers

Apparently word got out about our garage full of stuff. Yesterday we had a visitor who thought it would be fun to come on in and hide. We had just arrived home from grocery shopping (again—all those boys have to eat!) and as I was unloading bags out of the corner of my eye I saw something dart into the garage and underneath the car. I let out a scream and for a brief moment my heart skipped a beat when I thought it could be a lizard – I hate lizards, and pretty much anything reptilian. Unless of course it’s that adorable gecko with the British accent from Geico. Or perhaps these little fellas from Sobe Life Water—because, come on, lizards doing the “Thriller” dance? That’s just entirely too entertaining to be scary.
We’ve had numerous lizard and snake incidences around here, including live reptiles slithering through the house- their arrival courtesy of the kitty shuttle that seems to love to bring such things in. If I run into one of these things I am so creeped out that apparently I do a series of contortions known to my family as “the snake dance” which according to them is highly entertaining. What's equally as horrifying is encountering half lizzards and various lizzard parts in the yard. But getting back to the story…in this instance I caught just enough of a glimpse to realize a second later that it was in fact a squirrel. Whew- thank heavens! Luckily, I’m not afraid of squirrels. So I didn't have to scream - or do a dance. I just quickly called the teenager to come guard the garage to make sure Mr. Squirrel gets out before we close the garage door. This project took awhile. (Either that or teenager found a convenient way to get out of putting away groceries). He managed to snap photos during the squirrel expedition and eventually (we’re pretty sure) our visitor left to return to the forest and the rest of his little squirrel family.


As previously mentioned I do not like clutter. I do not function well with it and thus, made it my life’s work to keep it at bay and help others with the same insidious problem. It’s like a plague I tell you—it’s everywhere! My current personal clutter dilemma/project, shall we say, is working on going through all the extra stuff that appeared when getting married and combining two homes. Something we did three years ago. Yes, three years. In my defense, I did immediately get pregnant, have a baby and a host of other events took place during the last three years. But enough with the excuses already. Now there seems to be a major disagreement bit of confusion as to exactly who is responsible for the majority of the extra stuff that ended up making it’s way into our home, garage, garden house, shed, etc. (but it’s the hubby’s).

We have whittled it down little by little so it’s not quite as big as it once was. There have been numerous trips to the charity drop off center combined with multiple trash bags, shred-a-thons and BBQ burnings of old bills/paperwork. Speaking of paperwork---before we married the hubby’s bachelor pad had surfaces filled with junk mail—unopened, untossed junk mail. But, because there could be something important in the mix I didn’t dare throw anything away so I chucked it all into Rubbermaid storage containers and we loaded it on the truck and brought it to the home we now share. And right now I could take a trip out back to one of the sheds and visit said Rubbermaid containers. I could in fact build a small fort out of those Rubbermaid containers. And while I’m at it, I could open at least two of them and find nothing but stacks and stacks of photographs. Of his cat. All of them. I’m not even kidding. Sadly, this was the cat who was on his last little kitty legs during the time hubby’s bachelor pad was up for sale and mere days before our wedding. Yeah, rough times. RIP Gummy—we miss you little buddy. But, we have pictures. Lots of ‘em. Anyway, I digress….so all this stuff that made it’s way over has waited patiently for the day that hubby and I didn’t have “something else to do” in order to go through everything and decide what gets tossed. So, most of it is still waiting. When we venture into the garage and look at everything staring at us as we try to shimmy around, climb over and stumble through everything to get the actual useful thing we are looking for and I have to be honest, there is some unfortunate language spoken. At one point the stuff actually spilled over into the side yard---yeah, I hate to even admit this. Because basically it was like living in an episode of Sanford and Son. So, my point is that hubby and I have a little summer project on our hands because I am bound and determined to regain the order and organization around here. [read: get rid of the hubby’s “bachelor pad” crap once and for all!] The boys are talking about doing weight lifting and they’ll need to have a spot in the garage for this, so hopefully this will serve as further motivation. If not, I’m firing up the BBQ.

June at last

School’s out, kids are home, the BBQ’s uncovered and ready to go and the animals are lounging lazily in the grass.

The teenager’s lounging lazily, too, but I nip that in bud quick with various chores. Thank heavens for help at the grocery store. During our shopping trip this afternoon teenager had baby laughing hysterically as we went up and down the aisles—this is vastly better than the usual cry & whinefest I generally get when having to shop on my own with the little guy. Teenager served as further amusement when he came across the yogurt culture drink called “Yakult” and asks me if it’s Yak’s milk! (Umm, no, but creative guess!) The hubby tested out baby’s new drawing thingy and decided to draw a stick figure of the family—I commended him on his excellent artistic interpretation and told him I might just have to swap out the blog’s cartoon drawing for it. But for now, here it is.

Speaking of the hubby, guy geek-ness took over while strolling through our local shopping center past a bookstore that was having a “Star Wars” event. Apparently Hubby couldn’t resist the following photo op.