Monday, November 29, 2010

I Like The Sound Of Free!

Are you a procrastinator like me?  Who hasn't even thought about Christmas cards yet?  Go on, raise your hand.  So, here's the deal:  Shutterfly.com is offering bloggers fifty photo Christmas cards for free, just for blogging about their site and sharing their products.

FIFTY FREE CARDS!

Um, sign me up please!

I'm super excited about this.  I love Christmas cards.  I love giving them and I love getting them.  Friends, family, my vet - it doesn't matter.  I love them all.

I'm not the greatest though, at getting my act together.  First of all, getting photos worthy of a card is sweat inducing at best.  We have a family photo shoot set up for this Thursday and I've been stressing about it for a month.  A MONTH people!  Two words:  FOUR KIDS.  Yeah, you're breaking into a sweat just thinking about it too, aren't you?

But then, once I have the pictures in hand, I have to decide what sort of card I'd like to send.  Traditional?  Inspirational?  Timeless?  Quirky?  Whimsical?  Have you been to Shutterfly.com and checked out their cards?  The options are endless.

Right now I'm really liking this How Holly Story Christmas card:


It's got the right amount of photo openings for our family, and I love how I can add a couple lines about each of the girls.  It's a little more traditional looking than I usually go for, but it's definitely a top contender.  This is a flat card option, which is nice and simple.

I'm also loving this Joy Wishes Folded Christmas card:

If we can get the right family shot of all of us, this might be a keeper.  No pressure, right?  And with this one I love that if I'm a little behind in getting the cards out, it would sorta work for a new year card too.  See, look how practical that is!

Finally (I'm totally digressing from cards here), have you seen Shutterfly.com's calendars?  


I have to tell you, these suckers are the best.grandparent.gifts.ever.  Seriously.  What do your parents or in-laws really need that they don't already have?  A calendar full of pictures of your adorable children of course!  We do one of these every year for our parents and grandparents and they are a huge hit.  HUGE.

So, I've got a big decision ahead of me.  Which card to choose?  Hmmm... it's going to take a bit to decide.  I suppose first I should survive the photo shoot.  Deep breaths....

In the meantime, do you want to spread the Shutterfly.com love and receive 50 free cards yourself?  Check it.  It's too awesome to pass up!


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Thursday, November 25, 2010

So Blessed


Happy Thanksgiving from The Planet Pink!


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Monday, November 22, 2010

No, The Reunion Did Not Do Me In

Might as well have I guess.

Sorry for my slackerness.

I've started feeling guilty.  I hate guilt.

The reunion was way more fun than I thought it would be.  Lots of reminiscing, food, and no mums.  Also, strangely enough, no pictures of anyone other than my kids.

I guess it's official that you're a parent when you go to a college reunion and only take pictures of your kids and the kids of your former classmates.

Speaking of, we apparently now need to get a horse.  Thanks to my class lunch at the stables.  Princess #2 is in L.O.V.E.


So many pictures of her on that horse and I cut off the poor horse's head in nearly every shot.  A photographer I am not.

The hubs and I snuck away one night to go to the coffee shop where we had our first date 13 years earlier.  Well, it wasn't the EXACT coffee shop since Starbucks (who is taking over the world) moved into the space at some point in the last 13 years.  But still.  It was a coffee shop.

Ever hear that song by Landon Pigg?  (I know, unfortunate name)  I think it was written for us.  Check it out:



Sorry, that was a HUGE digression.

But I do love that song.  It's my ringtone for when the hubs calls.

And here's a pathetic self-portrait of the hubs and I reliving our first date:


What do you think of the bangs?  The jury is still sorta out for me.  I can't decide.  They don't look great in that pic.  Don't judge them by their end of the day-ness...  Cuz you know, that's not fair.

So here's the deal.  I have no idea how frequent I'll be with blogging in the next month or so.  But you all know the drill right?  Crazy busy time of year.  Got to focus on getting the family through the holidays.  Our calendar is stuffed full of parties, programs, rehearsals, etc.  And we don't even have teens yet.  Sigh.  If anything exciting happens I promise to let you know.

In the meantime, I'll leave you with this little gem of a conversation I had yesterday with Princess #2 and Princess #3.

Princess #3:  Mommy, how do you draw God?

Me:  However you like, honey.

Princess #2:  Because we don't know what he looks like.

Princess #3:  Oh come on!  He has a HEAD!


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Friday, November 12, 2010

Mums, Taco Bell And Quite Possibly A Trip Down Memory Lane

It's Homecoming!!  And you know what that means!

No, not ginormous mums and ribbons pinned to my shirt.  Seriously, where did that come from?  I just do not get that tradition....

ANYWAY.  It's my 10 year reunion!!

10 years ago at this time I was just a few months into "adulthood" (whatever that is).  Slaving away at a 9-5 (or technically 7:00-3:30) desk job, paying rent and putting the hubs through grad school  (now WHY was I so eager to grow up??).

This means also that 12 years ago this weekend the hubs and I met, fell in love and committed to a long-distance relationship.  It's another story for another time.  Maybe I'll tell ya someday.  :-)

Back to the reunion!  I'm giddy.  I can't wait to see all the people that forged through 4 years of exams, juries, recitals, break ups, make ups and 1 AM Taco Bell trips with me.

Of course, the most pressing question is:  What am I going to wear?!?

I told the hubs last night as I was stressing over packing that I felt like I needed to show everyone that I "haven't given up" (to borrow the phrase from a wise friend of mine).  I may be 30 something now (thank goodness we all are!) and I may have a gaggle of children following behind me, but I'm still the fun, funny, cheerful and enthusiastic little TT (my college nickname) that I was 10 years ago.  OK, maybe a bit more weary than before, but still.

(although, I have to say at the time I was seriously burning a candle at both ends.  I found an old college planner of mine a while back and I can't believe I made it out alive.  I'm not kidding.)

So I've painstakingly picked out my clothes (please tell me I'm not the only one who would stress about this.  It IS normal, right?), I got my hair done (Chelsea, I went with a chocolate red - more chocolate than red, but it's super cute), even cut bangs for the first time since college (and I'm PRAYING that they look better on me now than the did then, and I'm not just disillusional in thinking I can maybe repeat a trend I did 10 years ago).

And now we're off to a weekend of basketball, reunion lunches, breakfast with "the girls" and lots and lots of story telling and memories (just hopefully not the stories I'd rather not relive - I do have a few exes you know....)

I searched and searched but I couldn't find a pic of me from college on our computer.  That was back in the dark ages you know, when we used to take pictures with cameras that held film.  And you had to actually take the film to the store and get it developed in order to see the pictures.  Crazy, right?  So instead, here's a lovely pic of the aforementioned homecoming mums.  Now, I'm sure these ladies are lovely.  But, really?  Really?  Someone explain, please.


I'll be back on Monday with the whole lowdown.  Until then, have a fab weekend!



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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Confessions Of The Unfun One

Dear Princess #1,

I know I'm not a "fun" mom.

I don't play tickle tackle on the floor.

I don't sit and watch cartoons.

I don't let you stay up late and get you all wild and crazy right before bed.

You made that very clear last night when you told me you wished I was more like Daddy.



I have to admit, that stung a bit.

But you know, I'm not going to apologize for who I am and what kind of mommy I am.

You see, your daddy and I, we make a great team.

He plays and I plan.

He tickles tummies and I tackle toilets.

And above all, we both love you fiercely.



Our home is well rounded because we each do our jobs and we each meet needs.

If we were both the fun one, we'd have an empty fridge and dirty clothes and unpaid bills.

If we were both the unfun one, we'd have no laughter or smiles or joy.

We need each other and you need both of us.



We've fallen into our roles over time, and we're comfortable with them.

Sometimes the lines blur, sometimes we help each other out.

That's what marriage is about.  Someday you'll understand that.

We bring out the best in each other.



So I'm not upset that you wish I was more fun.

I imagine I felt the same way about my mom when I was your age.

I think it's probably normal.

I'll admit that mothering is at times a thankless job.

Hopefully someday we'll bond over that fact as you hold your own little one.

Until then, I'll keep doing my job.

The best job in the world.  And I don't do it alone.

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Monday, November 8, 2010

I Need A Me

The last couple of months I've been meeting with D, a friend of mine, for coffee on Wednesday mornings.

D just gave birth to her first little munchkin about 4 months ago (which I actually got to be present for - an AMAZING experience that deserves a post all it's own).  Anyway, like all babies, Miss O brought with her her own rules, so D and I have had plenty to talk about over the last few weeks.

As any woman who's had a baby knows, no topic is off limits once you've pushed a baby out of your hooha.  Modesty is checked at the door as soon as you're handed that paper gown and given a cup to pee in.  Likewise, we've covered every topic I think, from engorged boobs and green poop to projectile puke and nonstop screaming.

I realized over the weeks we've been meeting that I've got this baby thing down.  I've been round the barn 4 times now and very little phases me.  I've done it all or come pretty darn close.  Changed a poop so vile that the words to describe it should be censored?  Yep.  Strapped a screaming baby in the carseat and driving around the block knowing it is the one thing that will keep me from losing my cool?  Oh yeah.  Dug a booger the size of a marble out of my baby's nose while simultaneously catching puke with the other hand?  More times than I care to remember.  Lie wide awake all night, anxiously laying my hand across my baby's forehead?  Unfortunately yes.

Point is, I've been there, done that.  Deep in the trenches of early motherhood, I think (I hope!) I've been able to provide a bit of a lifeline for D.

It struck me the last time that D and I met during a conversation about teething coping strategies, that I need a me.  


I need someone I can call up and meet for coffee.  And sitting across the table over a steaming mug of joe pour out all my fears and insecurities and worries about my growing girls to someone else who's been there, done that.

Because while I might have the baby stage down, I feel very clueless and somewhat feverish about older kids.  I sorta joke about poor Princess #1 getting all my parenting mistakes, but part of me fears it's true too.  Surrounding myself with other women who have walked the road already and have emerged unscathed (or at least no worse for wear) is I think a key component to walking the road myself.

So, last week, I did just that.  I called up a friend who has sent two children off to college and has two more at home in middle school.  We sat and drank coffee and chatted about life and kids and everything. And it just felt good to be in the presence of a me.  To ask questions, get advice, laugh at myself over silly parenting faux pas I've made.  And it felt good.  I should have done it a long time ago.

My friends, do you have a me in your life?  Do you need one?  Find one!


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Friday, November 5, 2010

Oh Happy Day!

Today is Friday and I think that calls for a little Friday cheer!  Need a smile on your face?  Here's what's putting a smile on mine:


I wish you could smell through the computer.
Go to the store, grab a can of this and stick your nose in it.
Inhale and enjoy the fall goodness.



A mom of four should definitely have a mother's ring, no?
But four stones on one ring or four rings on one finger, it can get overwhelming.
I discovered this little gem while perusing etsy and now have it on my Santa list.
I've been a good girl this year.


My 10 year College reunion next weekend
Wait.  I'm not sure if that's smile inducing or a trigger for nightmares.
I'm in denial that it's been 10 years.
I hope I don't get a big zit on my nose or something.



Yoda ears and baby pictures
Nothing brings happy like looking at baby pictures of my loves.
Can't believe this one now has hair past her shoulders and has spent the last few days showing me the "letter she's working on".  
It's the letter H, by the way.



The Library
Free Books.  What doesn't make you smile about that?
Now if only they would put a Starbucks in the lobby.
That, my friends, would be perfection.


My friends, what is making you happy today?  Let me know what's putting a smile on your face!  


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Thursday, November 4, 2010

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

My Could Have Been



I was a Broadway Baby.  Except that I wasn't born anywhere near Broadway.  In fact, I didn't set foot on the sacred pavement until I was 17.  Funny now that I think about it.  That's about the age of countless hopefuls as they first set foot in the city to stay.  For me it was just a visit.  My only visit.

I lived and breathed the theater as a kid.  I LOVED being on stage.  For however introverted I am in real life, I came alive on stage.  As long as I wasn't being myself, I could be anything.  It was just small potatoes, church productions and school plays.  But I loved it.  I couldn't get enough.

I was the kid with the bizarre ability to memorize anything.  When I was in the 5th grade I was in a production of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.  I played the role of Beth, who narrated the story.  It was a hefty amount of speaking for a 10 year old.  Not only did I nail my lines, but I nailed the lines of every single other character in the show.  I have the video to prove it.  I mouthed the ENTIRE thing.

Musicals were my passion.  Oh how I loved to sing.  I began begging my parents for voice lessons at a very young age.  They finally gave in when I was about a freshman in high school and I began working with a Voice Major at a local University.  Eventually I became that Voice Major working with other young hopefuls.  Life's funny like that.

I did several shows in college.  I was a boy in Oliver!, I made people cry in Fiddler On The Roof, I caused rollicking laughter in Bye, Bye Birdie!  And then... I was just... done.  I got married, graduated and that was it.  I haven't been in a show since.

I don't think I made a conscious decision to quit.  It just happened.  I had those dreams of Broadway for so long and without ever realizing it, I gave them up.  Oh I know everyone has those dreams.  Every single person who's ever stepped on stage and caught the bug feels the same way:  that they somehow have that extra something special that no one else has.  But I really had it.  I mean, I think I did.  I really was the quiet nobody from Somewhere In The Middle, USA that was discovered in her little high school musical and was rushed off to NYC to be the Next Big Star where all her dreams came true.

Except.  It never happened.

It could have, I suppose.  I was never brave enough to venture beyond the walls of my church and school.  I didn't do community theater.  I didn't get an agent.  I didn't beg my parents to take me to auditions.

Now... sometimes... I kinda wish I had.

I have no idea where it would have led me, if anywhere.  And I have no desire to change where I am now.  And yet, still, I wonder...  I just feel like I've missed out on a part of me.  Not always, I'm not dwelling constantly on it or anything... but just every so often something will remind me of how much I loved the stage, and I get a twinge of nostalgia and dare I say, regret, that I didn't try just a little bit harder.  The stars didn't reach down and touch me, and now I'm too far away to touch them.  At least those stars.  Thankfully there's many, many more out there.

My friends, do you have any "could have beens"?  Any dreams you gave up, knowingly or unknowingly?  Do you wish you had done something different?  How do you think your life would be now if your "could have beens" became a reality?

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Tuesday, November 2, 2010

I Have A Problem

And it's a big one folks.

For whatever reason, God only knows, I have been blessed with....

*wait for it*

A Morning Person


Cute and sweet, no?

Yes.

Except at 6 AM.

It's like she wakes up as though she's already been awake for hours.

Follow me?  Definitely one of those "Hooray!  It's a new day!" kind of people.

Me?  Notsomuch.

We've already established the fact that I'm abnormally dependent on my coffee.  In an unhealthy sort of way.  As in, "don't look at me until I've had my first cup" sort of way.

Unfortunately, the FDA has not yet approved the coffee IV, which would solve all my problems.  I could get my first shot before I ever had to open my eyes.

Instead, I'm awakened each and every morning by this perky little blonde, skipping and prancing into my room.

I know, I know.  I should be grateful.

Gratefulness is hard to come by at 6 AM.

Let me get my coffee first.


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Monday, November 1, 2010

The Obligatory Post-Halloween Post


Have you OD'd on candy yet?

Having four kids will turn your house into Willie Wonka's workshop in a heartbeat on Halloween.  
The princesses cleaned up.  That pile above was just from church, with actual trick or treating yet to come.


Mythical beings were well represented by our crew this year.  A Garden Gnome, Tinkerbell, Little Red Riding Hood and an Autumn Fairy.


Our fearless Lil Red led the march up to each house,


while our most seasoned trick or treater hung behind, not wanting to be the one to ring the doorbell.


This one was just happy to be allowed to run freely.  And people were giving her candy!  Who wouldn't be happy?

*and of course going through my pictures I see I have zero good pics of miss Tinkerbell.  She was too busy collecting candy to pause for a picture.*


Trick or Treat!

My friends, I hope you had a spooktacularly wonderful Halloween!  Stay tuned for a fun Planet Pink Halloween video coming soon!

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