November 7, 2017

The Disney Disclosure

November 7, 2017
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It all started on a self pity kind of day while scrolling through Instagram. Pictures of miserably happy families so perfectly posed in front of the beloved Cinderella Castle grabbed a hold of me and pierced me right in the center of my heart where mommy guilt resides. 2016 wasn't the easiest year in the family/mom department so it only made illogical sense to surprise the twins with a trip to Disney. Big Dog didn't hesitate when I asked him if it was a good idea so I trusted that he trusted that I trusted I was making a good decision.

This picture is just flat disturbing. I'm offended at how magical this appears.
The planning began by simply alerting a friend that is a Disney planner (bless you, Whitney). And while I'm certain she took pleasure in planning our magical trip, I can assure you she did not take pleasure in answering my over one thousand text messages. Everything she did was perfect. She went above and beyond to ensure we had a magical trip at the hap, hap, happiest place on earth. She had nothing to do with the fact the Big Dog decided to prove a point by leaving for the airport later than his usual yet unnecessary 3 hours prior to boarding for a domestic flight out of Oklahoma City for crying out loud.

And this one. I can't. I just really can't.
You see, Big Dog (AKA: Airport Man), had us leave the house just late enough to be just late enough to miss checking our bags and nearly miss our flight. I was fit to be tied when he gave me a look and said, "See?!?! This is why I leave so early. THIS is what happens when you leave for the airport at the time YOU think you should leave." That's right. Mr. Prove a Point proved his point to the point I was in tears by the time we reached the pilot who kindly greeted us through his teeth. I dare say that set the tone for the rest of the trip.

Henry is very serious when considering where to send me with a Delta Gift Card.
Fast forward to arriving at Disney World. Exhausted, we inhaled lunch, met with family and dominated Animal Kingdom. Thankfully, the nearly missing our flight incident was punishment enough for one day. Wait, except for the line we waited in to board our Magical Express bus ride to the hotel. I nearly came undone when a walkie-talkie barked out that there were 15,000 people ahead of us. Friends, I warn against riding the Magical Express Cattle Call Bus. Take a cab and save what sanity you have left for the parks. You will need it.

Since I couldn't figure out the Magical Memories scam, I mean add on, I'm super glad Big Dog captured this!
Day 2: Magic Kingdom. My daughter woke with a stomach bug bad enough for me to call house keeping. It was disgustingly great. But the call of the kingdom was loud and she willed herself well and off we went. Now, if there is ever a time you should wear orthopedic shoes and pop a Valium, this is the time. Holy crowds and electric scooters! I felt like I had been transported to the National Electric Scooter Convention. Man, I'd never seen so many rent-a-scooters in my life. It was so distracting I missed riding Peter Pan and Pirates of the Caribbean. And the crowds! An hour and a half wait to experience a two minute ride that has you wondering what the creators were trippin' on. No thanks! I found myself completely creeped out by all the animatronics in It's a Small World. I swear those freaky little kids come to life at night and wreak havoc in that giant tunnel. I had nightmares that night. It wasn't pretty. Or magical.

A little time out for some mediation. I hurt too bad to stand on one foot.
Day 3: Hollywood Studios. Eh, it was okay. I mean, I peed my pants. And I cried. Listen, Tower of Terror should be illegal. There is no sign that says, "This ride is not for the weak bladders". Forget being pregnant or having a heart condition. What about completely wetting yourself? The whole up and then down and then back up to know you have to go back down back to knowing if you go down you have to go back up. I left my bladder and five years of my life on that ride from hell. So now not only did I wish I had orthopedic shoes but I wish I'd packed some Depends. Further into the day my feet started to hurt and sting. My legs were throbbing and my back was at war with the rest of my body. I was wishing so badly to be an electric scooter candidate. I wanted to crawl in a ball and cry out, "Mommy!". But there was a Pin Trading party to get to and I take Pin Trading very seriously. Just kidding, but I sure reacted as if I did. Long story short and forty-five minutes later fresh off a broken down Monorail we arrived at what was to be a Pin Trading party. Nope. No such thing. Let's just say thou shall not mess with me when the letters PMS are involved. And don't mess with me after I've had the rear-end of a 300 pound woman in my face on a broken down Monorail either. Not good, people. Not a good idea. Yeah, so anyways there wasn't a Pin Trading party. Even though it was on the activity schedule, Kevin! Can I just share that I'd been on the wagon for more that fifteen days before the Pin Trading fiasco? Yeah. Nonetheless, we managed to enjoy dinner (and a few drinks) that we were an hour late to.

Nothing to see here. Big Dog took this, then text it to me. Thanks for that. Preesh. Just the look of someone who could be committed to the nearest insane asylum. Or sentenced to It's a Small World for the rest of your life.
Day 4: Let's blow this place! Ha Ha. Not really. I mean, kind of. It's just that I was so tired and in pain and I peed on a ride. And let's face it, I had a blister on my pinky toe that I'd trade for a hemorrhoid any day of the week. If anything I reconfirmed my hatred for crowds, electric scooters, long lines, and retired people that drive busses and take nine hours to parallel park before opening the door. For the love, Disney! You killed me. I am currently walking dead.

When you tell your kids to go use up the remaining points on the meal plan at Goofy's Candy Shop but they get the one and only thing that's not included on the meal plan and rack up over $25 in hard core sugar.
Now, all that trash talk aside, we did make some pretty great memories and the twins got to have fun with no strings attached. They didn't notice the scooters, nor were they bothered to the point of criminal intent with the crowds. They laughed, got along and soaked up every drop of magic Disney oozes out. IF you ever do Disney use a Disney planner. It takes the sting out of the stick. Oh, and pack sunscreen even if it is December. And Dr. Scholls Gellin like a felon I'm like Magellan inserts, Depends, Valium, Pepto Bismol, and super cool orthopedic shoes (if you can find any).

You take your kid to Disney and they beg to go to the hotel arcade. I do love me some photo booth pics though.

I would have taken pictures of the animatronics but I heard if you do you will be cursed until your dying day.

PS: Since man buns are a thing now and seem to be socially acceptable, does that mean that men wearing Mickey Ears is acceptable too? Just askin'?

Baseball: It Happened to Me

When my son said he wanted to play baseball my stomach sunk and my knuckles turned white.  Seriously?  Sure, let's add one more extra curricular activity to our killer schedule.  No problem.  Sign us up!  Thank you Lord that you gave me a daughter that does not like dance.  You spared me there, no doubt.  So soccer, basketball, football and baseball.  Easy peasy.  

I've NEVER liked sports.  Ever.  The only sport I played was basketball.  Once.  The only point I made was via a granny shot.  Humiliating.  So when we added baseball to the roster I was less than thrilled.  The only thing I knew about baseball was it involved Cracker Jacks.  But as with everything else, I bucked up and committed to letting Henry play ONE season and prayed fiercely that he'd hate it.  

He loved it.  My first experience as a mom in the stands was so intimidating.  I was terrified.  My first memory is of this darling Baseball Mom shouting, "Get-cha a piece of it Jonny".  Get-cha a piece of it?  Huh?  Whoa.  This was real.  I quickly started Googling baseball lingo and slang.  I already stuck out like an old bat.  I didn't order a team shirt or hat and my street clothes screamed ametour.  Before I knew it, every parent in the stands started to shout at my son to SCOOT UP!  I was completely clueless and wanted to fit in so I shouted at him too.  And he immediately scooted up and hit it out of the park.  Not really but it felt like it.  All of this sudden, I loved baseball too.  

Two seasons later I was hooked.  I loved the kids and their families and I hadn't even had a single Cracker Jack.  But don't think for a second that I haven't participated in my fair share of macheese nachos.  "Ma-cheese".  Cheese from a machine.  Oh so terribly good.  If it's not a kid shaving years off my life, it's the food I eat.  Anyway,  I was becoming a baseball mom.  OMG!  But I still hadn't managed to courage to shout "Get-cha a piece of it".  I'm still ammeter level.  But I know a foul ball and how many times the pitcher can pitch.  I'm getting there.  

What I didn't know was how hot and bothered coaches can get.  I've seen parents come out their own shoes in rage at a poor skinny acne faced ref in soccer.  I've seen wives send their husbands to the car before being told to leave the field by an official.  Heck, I've seen parents get ejected from games.  But of all the balls out there, I've never seen a coach get his boxers in a wad at an 8 year old baseball game.  Quite a scene I tell you.  Poor umpire.  It can get ugly out there at second base.  Especially after everyone has left and it's just the coach and the ref. 

Baseball has happened to me.  I'll get fired up.  I'll jump up and down, clap and cheer.  I'll grab the knee of another mom when my son is up to bat.  I'll pick the shellac off my nails until they are destroyed beyond repair . But if you see me get hot and bothered drag me off to the concession stand for nachos with extra macheese and perhaps hand me a spiked drink.  Whaaaaat?  There's drinking in baseball? Trust me.  There is, Virginia. 

June 1, 2017

Green Acres: For Better or For Worse

June 1, 2017
I'll shoot straight and not beat around the hay bale.  I've been in a dark and desperate pit of depression and anxiety and basically spent February, March an part of April completely unavailable to life.  I've struggled with depression for years, but anxiety? Not so much. This was my first rodeo with anxiety and it was nothing short of debilitatingly awful.  After seeking professional help, taking specific supplements, surviving a near intervention from my dear friends, hitting the floor in tears of prayer, leaning on my family and holding on to Big Dog for dear life...I'm back and better.  Dare I say, better than ever?  But I have to tell you, I was convinced I'd never, ever, ever be better.  Never say never.  God answered my prayers and delivered me better than I was before.  The fog lifted.  

I look back and can't believe how bad I was.  How scared and desperate I was.  I was truly convinced that was it.  I'd forever be in a state of unbearable anxiety.  I'd never know anything but depression.  I'm thankful for my family and friends.  And walking.  I walk with a friend and it's been just about the best medicine.  However, in a strange and not so believable way, our green acres has had a way of keeping me from going back to the pit (I thought the only cure was a patio home).  After all, farm chores are the best chores.  Maybe.  Sometimes.  Occasionally. 

Fourth to walking, prozac and supplements, mowing is also good medicine.  A good dose of accomplishment will keep your head high.  If you're like me you know the importance and feel good of vacuum lines, a fresh swept barn, an empty dryer, dishwasher and my favorite (drum roll please) a freshly wiped down countertop.  But lately, mowing has been therapeutic and somewhat delightful.  Mowing to a farmer is like tea to the Englishman. 

See the line of definition?  The very definition of utopia when it comes to before and after.  Awe, the smell of freshly cut grass.  Is there not a candle for that?  Wait, actually the smell isn't so lovely.  Not when you mow over more than you can count piles of manure.  I mean, if you visualize it, not only am I covered in grass clippings and dodging bunny nests but I'm also inhaling manure spores for crying out loud.  Ew. Gross.  So gross. Flying pieces of manure.  Ugh.  

I apologize for that graphic but I pledge to keep it real on here even if it's stinky.  Anyhoo, I'll draw the line there.  Except, I drew a line, a deep and very defined line when it came to Big Dog getting cattle.  I said with certain certainty that there was no way we were getting cattle.  I put my boot down and had my hands on my hips and said no way no how brown cow.  Big Dog has always been a good listener but lately, his game of ask for forgiveness instead of permission is strong.  My firm stance was totally ignored and he brought home FOUR cows.  I think my hands have remained on my hips until writing this post and to be honest I haven't put on my big girl panties and truly forgiven him yet. 

The cows are all too appropriately named, by my eight year old daughter. Brisket, Steak, Hamburger and Roast.  I do declare.  I can't take it and question if she's truly my child.  

I thought sheep were dumb.  No.  Cows are dumb. Dumb cows.  I swore I wouldn't take a liking to them and I've stuck to my guns.  They even got out to graze on our neighbors pasture and I don't care.  Not one bit.  Big Dog was out of town, of course, and I wouldn't even go look to see where the dumb things got out and try to get them back in.  Dumb cows.

The grass is always greener.  I need a zoom lens.  These dumb cows won't even let me get within 100 yards of them.  I can hear one of them mooing as I type trying to figure out how to get get  over the fence and join her runaway homies.  Dumb cows.  

On a positive note, spring on the farm means new life (and hella lotta work).  And by new life I mean mail order new life.  Despite my toddler fit, Big Dog insisted we needed more chickens.  For the love.  When is enough enough?  Alas, mail order is the way to go when getting baby chicks.  Nothing cuter than picking up a box of chirping chicks from the post office and having the twenty people in line stare at you. 

I don't know why Big Dog thinks we need more chickens.  Fifty Shades of Eggs for your  rated G viewing pleasure. 

We ordered fifteen but ended up with fourteen because one was D.O. A.  Poor fella.  But aren't they cute?  And the gray chicks!  They came with feathers on their feet.  I'm obsessed.  

Just the sweetest, softest thing. That is until you pick it up and it poops all over you.  I literally scared the poop out of this gal.  But we got cleaned up and snapped this pic real quick.  

Isn't she cute, that little chick.  And my daughter obviously.  Oh, the arm?  Right.  Indeed.  It wouldn't be kosher for Big Dog to go out of town and tragedy not strike.  This little miss fell off a four wheeler and broke her arm.  And just because I'm a pro at broken arms because her twin brother broke both arms last September doesn't mean I took lightly to this accident.  It could have been much, much worse so I am ever so thankful that it is just a broken arm. One broken arm. Now she's in a purple cast and will be back to barrel racing in no time.  Deep breath.  

I've managed to NOT kill my lil rose bush.  And have learned to stop and see the beauty of the farm.  Well, I mean I'm working on it.  I'm a glass half empty kind of gal and so positivity is a challenge.  But I'm getting there.  My therapist has assigned me with seeing the good in things.  To notice the leaves on the trees and butterflies on the flowers or the soft baby feathers on little chicks.  It's a process. An expensive process.  Our deductible is just a leeeeeeeeetle high. 

In addition to spring chicks, we have a spring garden.  Sort of.  But at least the tomatoes are interesting.  We are expecting triplet tomatoes.  

The dogs are still pals and work tirelessly at keeping the coyotes away and posing for a perfect picture minus a muddy backdrop.

Diamond is still kicking it.  But for real.  Poor Diamond is being harassed by a stud miniature horse, named Apple Dumpling.  The whole thing is just weird and confusing to the kids.    Anyone want a horse? 

And the pigs.  Lottie is shockingly still alive.  Covered in mud sores, she still manages to get up once a day and eat.   It's not clear if Lottie has eyes.  Wilbur is still with us.  He's much more active and has apparent eyes. 

And now I'd like to end this post on a humble note.  While feeling pretty good about myself as I mowed four pastures in a row, I also managed to mow the garden hose.  Sure did.  Who knew that one must turn the mower implement off when finished mowing?  Better a hose than an actual water line.  We've had a our share of water line catastrophes.  

It's good to be back and active on the farm.  But I feel some respite coming on.  Life on the farm is no vacation.  It's always something.  Always, always.  You can count on it.  After all, it's green acres covered in horse and cow manure.  

Wait.  Hold it right there.  Before I can post this I must bring you up to speed on the cows that left our farm for greener pastures.  My heart tugged, just a little, and I agreed to help  Big Dog round 'em up and bring 'em home.  Bahahahahahahahah!  

Since we aren't actual cowboys, we round our herd, I mean Big Dog's herd, on ATVs. And you know what happens when you chase cows on an ATV?  You basically get flipped off and loose manure in your face.  Never get too close to the rear of an anxious cow on an ATV.  Especially when the wind is blowing.  

I learned this pretty quickly and decided I'd had enough of flying manure and decided to keep my distance.  Long story short, we were unsuccessful at getting them back over and called it a night.  Two days after our ATV escapade, the dumb things figured out how to get back over on their own.  Just like that.  There they were standing in their proper pasture staring at me.  

Oh and apparently we have witches on our land.  I haven't slept sound since.  The proof is in the cauldron. Witches.  Why else would there be a cauldron randomly sitting at the back of the land?  Great.  As if I need a 187th reason for one of our kids to crawl in bed with us at night.  Thanks, witches.  

And that's all I got.  For now.